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dealing with similar parts of varying dimensions

paul_1paul_1 Posts: 27Member ✭✭
edited July 2016 in Community Support
i'm designing a small cabinet, built entirely from common dimensional lumber -- 1x3, 1x5, 1x12, etc.

there will be multiple instances of each kind of board in the final assembly, and those instances may or may not be the same length.

so while there may be lots of different parts (a 1 foot 1x3, a 2.5 foot 1x3, a 4 foot 1x12) they're all pretty similar.

obviously i don't want to create a new part for every different type and length of board, but creating a handful of parts representing
a 1 foot 1x3, a 1 foot 1x5, a 1 foot 1x12 would be useful as prototypes to then modify as needed.

first -- do i need to create a new sketch for every new part?  it seems that if i draw a rectangle, and extrude it into a new part then that sketch is locked to that part, and resizing the rectangle in order to extrude the next part (i.e., a 2.5" wide board rather than an 11.25" wide board) affects the dimensions of the first, already extruded, board.

second -- once i succeed in creating all my 1 foot board "prototypes", will i be able to import them into an assembly, and resize them separately there?

thanks for helping a newbie....

Answers

  • mr_deekmr_deek Posts: 3Member
    At this time it does not seem you can use a project in another project. ( Feature to come they say ).

    You can export the board ... then import them ( you loose weldments and most dimension control after ...

    You can say import a 8ft board ... use it as a reference and use extrue to remove 1.5' off an ext or put holes in ... etc ...
  • philip_thomasphilip_thomas Posts: 543Member, Onshape Employees, Developers
    Until we have linked documents, don't forget that you can copy/paste part studios from one document to another.
    That way you would have one document containing one or more part studios with all your standard parts that you can then copy paste into your current document to use in assemblies. :)

    https://cad.onshape.com/help/#elementtabs.htm

    Thank you for your support of Onshape.
    Philip Thomas - Onshape
  • viruviru Posts: 615Member, Developers ✭✭✭✭
    edited March 2016
    @paul_1 , You can use variable option to create first part. After that you have to make duplicate if you want to use in a same document or copy to clipboard option and paste tab in another document. You can get all your requirement by putting value in variable. Kindly refer below video for more detail.
    I hope this will be helpful to you. If you want something different then feel free to write.



  • paul_1paul_1 Posts: 27Member ✭✭
    viru said:
    @paul_1 , You can use variable option to create first part. 


    thank you.  the trouble with an animated gif is that it's hard to tell where it begins, but i think i figured it out.  :-)   but i'm a little confused:  i thought variables were global to the document.  so after changing the variables for each next part, hasn't that caused the sizes of the previously created parts to change as well?
  • paul_1paul_1 Posts: 27Member ✭✭
    Until we have linked documents, don't forget that you can copy/paste part studios from one document to another.
    That way you would have one document containing one or more part studios with all your standard parts that you can then copy paste into your current document to use in assemblies. :)

    https://cad.onshape.com/help/#elementtabs.htm

    Thank you for your support of Onshape.

    but my problem is that i don't have "standard parts".  all of the boards, while they have a few standard widths and heights, will all have different lengths.

    perhaps i need to re-ask my second question, because that's probably the crux, here:  once i succeed in creating all my 1 foot board "prototypes", will i be able to import them into an assembly, and resize them separately there?   i'll need to take a prototy[e 1x3x1' board and resize multiple instances of it to different lengths.  when i was experimenting yesterday, it seemed like everytime i resized a part (to give it a new length), all instances of that part were resized at the same time.

  • philip_thomasphilip_thomas Posts: 543Member, Onshape Employees, Developers
    Paul there is an 'ideal' solution that we don't have yet (configurations), but there a a couple of viable workarounds (one available now and one in about 3 weeks).
    For now, you can RMB over and part studio and 'duplicate it' creating a copy of the board. Each board can then be edited to its desired length. As you need a new board length in the assembly, create another part studio copy and edit its length.
    Additional workflows will become available in the coming weeks :)
    Philip Thomas - Onshape
  • paul_1paul_1 Posts: 27Member ✭✭
    i see.  thanks!
  • bengt_gustafssonbengt_gustafsson Posts: 1Member
    I think this is a very important issue, that does not get solved by the "classic" configurations of for instance solidworks: We need to import the idea of a function call from the programming world so that you can use a part in an assembly (calling a function) and supply actual parameters (dimensions and counts) to the part from the assembly. Inside the part you would need something similar to the current "variable" concept called "parameter", or maybe just a way to tell a variable that its value is to come from the client assembly. Then when you insert the part in the assembly a dialog pops up where you must enter the parameter values.

    I have used SW quite a lot eariler to create track layouts with different length parts, different radius curves, etc. and it is really irritating to have to create a named configuration for each individual track length (as obviously the track has to adapt to the terrain). The indirection via the name also hides the parameter values (typically I used to name the configurations "long" "short" etc which soon broke down).

    In these days of additive production being able to make parts in any length rather than just a fixed set of configurations makes even more sense.
  • gary_monsongary_monson Posts: 2Member
    Has this been solved? I'd like to use Onshape to design furniture, but if I can't create "prototype" parts that can be resized, then the work becomes too tedious.
  • philip_thomasphilip_thomas Posts: 543Member, Onshape Employees, Developers
    @gary_monson - there isn't really a point where any CAD system can say this is 'solved'. You are looking at a very powerful and flexible tool that you would like to use to design furniture. There are many professional Onshape users doing exactly that and i bet that every one of them uses a different workflow. If i had to take a guess as to the most common workflow, i would say that it would probably look something like;
    • Design a new piece of furniture using top-down assembly design based on a master layout sketch (possibly utilizing variables).
    • This will generate the required pieces.
    • To make variations on this piece, create a new branch for each variation and update the variables driving the geometry
    • All elements in that branch will then update (the individual pieces, the part and assembly drawings) 
    You will no doubt feel that you have a special case and i would point you to the public documents where there are many examples of work done by other free users.  Here are some examples;

    Good luck! :)










    Philip Thomas - Onshape
  • ilya_baranilya_baran Posts: 607Onshape Employees, Developers
    At the same time, we're working on configurations with power-user options along the lines of what @bengt_gustafsson described.
    Ilya Baran \ Director of FeatureScript \ Onshape Inc
  • brucebartlettbrucebartlett Posts: 1,082Member, OS Professional, Mentor PRO
    At the same time, we're working on configurations with power-user options along the lines of what @bengt_gustafsson described.
    Yes, I am looking forward to getting that table so then I can design all manner of tables. 
    Engineer ı Product Designer ı Onshape Consulting Partner
    Twitter: @onshapetricks  & @babart1977   
  • gary_monsongary_monson Posts: 2Member
    @gary_monson - there isn't really a point where any CAD system can say this is 'solved'. You are looking at a very powerful and flexible tool that you would like to use to design furniture. There are many professional Onshape users doing exactly that and i bet that every one of them uses a different workflow. If i had to take a guess as to the most common workflow, i would say that it would probably look something like;
    • Design a new piece of furniture using top-down assembly design based on a master layout sketch (possibly utilizing variables).
    • This will generate the required pieces.
    • To make variations on this piece, create a new branch for each variation and update the variables driving the geometry
    • All elements in that branch will then update (the individual pieces, the part and assembly drawings) 
    You will no doubt feel that you have a special case and i would point you to the public documents where there are many examples of work done by other free users.  Here are some examples;

    Good luck! :)










    Thanks very much! Absolutely inspiring to see that others have created designs similar to what I'm going for. I guess I'll be spending lots of time on the learning curve, which believe me, is really fun!
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