Inventor Customization

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michmaju
Posts: 29
Registered: ‎09-01-2011
Message 1 of 5 (252 Views)

Automated extraction of parts list from pdf to compile complete drawing package

252 Views, 4 Replies
03-07-2012 10:02 AM

pdf drawings are king at our company.  When we creat a product, pdfs (and sometimes stp files) are generated and placed in folders organized numerically by part number.

 

Our challenge is that finding all the current pdfs for an assembly is not automated.  Thus, to get all the current drawing pdfs, someone has to open up the top level pdf, read all the part numbers, go get/print the pdfs of the parts, subassemblies, subassembly parts,  etc.  This is time consuming and error prone and getting worse as the number of parts we always increasing.

 

I'd like to automate the process.  I'm thinking about a program/script that:

  1. Extract parts list from pdf of Inventor assembly drawing
  2. Copy pdf of individual parts/subassemblies to a directory
  3. Merge all pdf for that assembly into single pdf

Has anyone done anyting similar?  Have any advice?  See any reason why it wouldn't work?  Able to articulate why pdfs as king is a horrible idea?

 

Thanks, 

Matthew
INV 2013
Valued Mentor
Mike.Wohletz
Posts: 375
Registered: ‎07-29-2008
Message 2 of 5 (247 Views)

Re: Automated extraction of parts list from pdf to compile complete drawing pack

03-07-2012 10:27 AM in reply to: michmaju

It looks to me like item #1 is the biggest challenge, if you can go back to the original model and extract the parts list the next items would be much easier. When it come to extracting data like you are wanting to do PDF is not king anymore. 

 

*Expert Elite*
Curtis_Waguespack
Posts: 2,815
Registered: ‎03-08-2006
Message 3 of 5 (238 Views)

Re: Automated extraction of parts list from pdf to compile complete drawing pack

03-07-2012 02:24 PM in reply to: michmaju

Hi michmaju, 

 

These link might be of interest:

 

http://forums.autodesk.com/t5/Autodesk-Inventor-Customization/Plot-all-related-files-to-PDF-from-an-...

http://forums.autodesk.com/t5/Autodesk-Inventor-Customization/Printing-all-drawings-of-an-assembly-f...

 

 

I hope this helps.
Best of luck to you in all of your Inventor pursuits,
Curtis
http://inventortrenches.blogspot.com

 

 



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Valued Contributor
cean_au
Posts: 100
Registered: ‎07-11-2011
Message 4 of 5 (232 Views)

Re: Automated extraction of parts list from pdf to compile complete drawing pack

03-07-2012 08:40 PM in reply to: michmaju
I once worked in a company where tif is the king. The beauty of tif or PDF is that engineer or sales don't need a cad software. Cad is for drafter only. It's an expensive tool of their trade. I once use a vbs script to parse the file name which include project num and part num to insert them in a word document, then print out as single PDF.
Contributor
mttb
Posts: 20
Registered: ‎12-15-2010
Message 5 of 5 (190 Views)

Re: Automated extraction of parts list from pdf to compile complete drawing pack

04-08-2012 04:41 PM in reply to: cean_au

Hi,

 

I have implemented such a system.

These are my hints:

- make a 'release' macro:  export the partlist as xls (1 level, no tree) and save drawing as pdf. If you use version or revision numbers you can add them to the drawing number (filename).

- Make a macro in excel: file open dialog for selecting partlist xls of main assembly drawing. Calling a subroutine recursively you can gather all necessary data. read the cells containing other drawing numbers and call the subroutine again. During the exploration of the tree you can copy the xls's and/or pdfs to a different folder. You can also join the xls data in a tree file.

- When the program is done you still have to join them. There a free programs to do that (e.g. PDFTools or PDFforge).

Whether pdfs are a good choice: Depends on your needs. If you stick to the 'release' plan it's usually fine, I think. But remember that they basically are a 'screenshot', so not continuously updated. For that you need IV. 

 

Have fun!

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