The purpose of this supporting function is to maintain the basic data needed to create product variants through configuring products, as well as to connect the basic data to the appropriate product structures.
To use this supporting function, there must be an item for which variants are to be created. This is indicated by configuration code 1 or 2 in 'Item. Open' (MMS001/G). Also, the item must have a product structure.
This diagram shows the basic data in this supporting function.
Features are specified in 'Feature. Open' (PDS055). See Enter Feature. Feature names can also be updated in different languages in 'Feature. Enter Names/Language' (PDS057).
Features are connected to a product structure header in 'Product. Connect Features' (PDS009). This program is called by using option 13=Features/prod in 'Product Structure. Open' (PDS001).
This connection can be made to regulate the order the features are displayed when a product configuration is created.
Features can be connected to a closed product structure line (material or operation line) in order to automatically regulate whether the product structure line is included in the product configuration. Both features and options are connected to such product structure lines.
This method is used when all possible variant combinations should be included in a product structure, or when normal distribution between different variants should be taken into account during requirements planning and costing.
There are two variations on this method depending on how options are entered when a product variant is configured. With the first, letters or numerals are entered; with the second, the component number is entered.
If extra material lines are obtained in a product structure when these variants are used, it is recommended to use selection matrices in order to choose the component number. This applies even when it is not desirable to change sequence number in the product structure, depending on the line selected.
Features can be connected to an open material line in order to determine component number or included quantity when a product configuration is created. For more information, see Connect Configuration Element to Product Structure. When there are features on an open material line, their options are entered manually as a component number or included quantity. In certain cases it may be better to use selection matrices, etc. in order to make correct selections in the product structure.
It is doubtful whether features should be used to determine the item number in an open material line, since it is simple for the person creating the product structure but places greater demands on the person configuring the product. Part of the simplicity of creating a product configuration is lost since the user must make a decision each time.
Options are specified in 'Option. Open' (PDS050). See Enter Option. Option names can also be updated in different languages in 'Option. Enter Names/Language' (PDS058).
Options are connected to features in 'Feature. Connect Options' (PDS056). See Connect Option to Feature.
Enter Variant Combinations
Invalid variant combinations are specified in 'Feature/Option Comb. Open Invalid' (PDS051). See Enter Invalid Variant Combination.
Obligatory variant combinations are specified in 'Feature/Option Comb. Open Obligatory' (PDS054). See Enter Obligatory Variant Combination.
Customer or country-specific variant combinations are specified in program 'Feature. Connect Default Options' (PDS053). See Enter Customer or Country-Specific Variant Combination.
Formulas are created in 'Formula. Open' (CRS570). See Create Formula.
Formulas can be connected to an open product structure line in order to calculate material quantity or operation time when a product configuration is created. For more information, see Connect Configuration Element to Product Structure as mentioned in the previous section. A formula can be complex and result in various partial replies, so that the same formula can be used in many different structures. By saving the formula results in a drawing measurement, several formulas can form a string of calculations.
Enter Selection Matrix
Selection matrices are created in 'Selection Matrix. Open' (PDS090). See Create Selection Matrix.
Selection matrices can be connected to an open material line in order to determine component number or material quantity when a product configuration is created. For more information, see Connect Configuration Element to Product Structure as mentioned in the preceding section.
A selection matrix differs from a formula in that it gives a predefined result for a specific combination of options. It can also be used to determine discreet quantities and measurements.
Whether a selection matrix, feature with item number as option, or phantom product structure is used to design a product structure does not affect the results, which can be the same. If a feature with item number as option is used, a simplified product structure is obtained. However, this also means greater demands on the person creating the configuration. When a selection matrix or phantom structure is used, it is easier to determine the rules for creating a product configuration. It is suitable to use a selection matrix when:
Enter Drawing Measurement
Drawing Measurement are specified in 'Drawing Measurement. Open' (PDS080). See Enter Drawing Measurement. Drawing measurement names can also be updated in different languages in 'Drawing Measurement. Enter Names/Lang' (PDS083).
Drawing measurements are connected to a product structure in program 'Product. Connect Drawing Measurements' (PDS081). This program is called by using option 14=Draw meas/prod in PDS001. See Connect Drawing Measurement to Product Structure.
Drawing measurements are used for calculations as well as internal or external information, and can be connected to product structure lines. The product structure header contains information on how the measurement is to used. It also indicates if the drawing measurement is fixed or if it is determined when a product is configured using formulas, selection matrices, or features. The product structure line regulates whether the drawing measurement should be printed on detailed manufacturing documents together with each structure line. This results in a unique definition of the drawing measurement for each product structure.
Drawing measurements do not only indicate the measurement of a drawing; they also offer information on weight, volume and area, as well as alphanumeric values.