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Frame Generator - BOM - Unit Qty

Message 1 of 6
292 Views, 5 Replies

Frame Generator - BOM - Unit Qty


I am setting up Frame Generator for use in handrail design.
My default design unit is (inches). And I would like to keep that.


However, when looking at the BOM, my frame members come up with a length quantity. Which is great, but it's in (inches). I would like to change this unit to (feet), so that it's shown in my drawing parts lists as (feet).


How do I change this unit type?

I have tried...
1) change unit of custom frame profile to (feet)

     -i did not like this, because my rail diameters and wall thicknesses also changed display to (feet) in the frame config
2) modify custom frame profile parts (prior to adding to content center) DocumentSettings-BillOfMaterials-BaseUnit (Length, G_L) parameters both set to use (feet)
   -this did not seem to do anything for me
3) modify template .ipt and .iam (Length, G_L) parameters both set to use (feet)
   -this only seems to affect my shown sketch unit lengths in the BOM. (not useful to me, see snapshot)

How the heck can I convert this unit to feet???

And furthermore, once I do, how can I round this number up to the next foot? I shouldn't have to do all of this with a script in excel post BOM output... Right?



Thanks for the help.

Labels (1)
Message 2 of 6
in reply to: JusticeSmith

Hi! I believe the unit is dictated by the frame member family (structured shape). You will need to replace the family template. Actually, you don't need to do that in assembly BOM. In the drawing PartsList, the unit conversion is fairly straight forward. Just select the desirable unit for the given column, it will be converted accrodingly.

Many thanks!

Johnson Shiue (
Software Test Engineer
Message 3 of 6
in reply to: johnsonshiue

I appreciate you taking the time to respond, your answers have helped me on many occasions.


That being said, when you say that I need to replace the family template, that's something I've tried a few times. (see attempt 1) In that attempt, I purged the family from my content center, then modified the units of the part before re-publishing. It did some things I didn't really want.


I have also done the Drawing-PartsListStyle-ColumnFormat method you mention too- that converts the unit as desired, though changes my count quantities to Inches for some reason? You can see this effect in the snapshot below...

(snapshot - original parts list above, modified style below)



You can see why this wouldn't be the ideal approach. Part counts shouldn't be changed to inch units.
I also realize I could add a separate column to reference a new parameter, with an iLogic rule doing the conversion. I really don't want to have blank spaces in my parts-list for non-frame members however. 

so ideally, I'd like to convert units at the lowest level possible, to avoid issues like seen in the snapshot.

Message 4 of 6
in reply to: JusticeSmith

Hi @JusticeSmith 

The cleanest way to do this is to change the length unit for the u it qty in the family. Place as custom change the parameter units in the parameter window ensure the length qty is changed to ft before you save the file. Carry out a replace family template. Place from content center a member from the family and Check the unit is as you need. 

Then to actually update your current document you need to  change the family being used to another or indeed  change the size of the extrusion. This forces all the current custom placed frame members to be deleted. Now change back to the family you want. All the units should now be as you need. 


Here is a video explaining the unit qty process in the document file

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Message 5 of 6
in reply to: A.Acheson

Your reply was very helpful, I feel much closer to my solution after following your advice.
Though even still, the frame member persists as an (inch) value.

-changed part template to (feet)

-changed assembly template to (feet)

-changed content center part template to (feet)

-specified content center length parameter as (feet)

-specified content center bom length parameter as (feet)
-skeleton sketch drawn and specified as (feet)


So if I place from content center, the "Tube-R 1.5" QTY is correctly read as (feet)

But if I use frame generator, the unit changes back to (inch) for this member (36.0) - [see snapshot below]



Am I just missing something obvious here? It seems that when the length (G_L) gets recalculated via Frame Generator, my units convert back to (inch)... Is this an override?

What the heck is going on? Lol

Message 6 of 6
in reply to: JusticeSmith


Hi @JusticeSmith 

I did the same change as you and confirm it does nothing to the Frame Generated parts. They still come in with the wrong length unit despite it being changed in the family. So I am assuming frame generator is changes the units based on a hidden template! There must be a workflow to make this work. Hopefully Johnson can point to it. 


Edit: You need these two items together in the part file then do a replace family template. Just changing the base unit alone does not work. 









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