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Thread: Parts explosion

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2005
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    9

    Parts explosion

    I am trying to design a database to define the scope of supply of industrial equipment. These equipments are quite similar, but some of the parts and type of parts supplied with them are different.

    In classic parts explosion the scopes of supply are rather fixed. But I would like to define certain criteria that must be met by the equipment to have a certain part.

    Imagine the equipment were cars. If one picked 'Toyota', the car color could be red, blue or white. With 'BMW' it would be blue, black and grey.

    Same thing for parts. For Toyota I would like to have engine A, engine B or engine C. For BMW engine D, E and F.

    I know this sounds quite OO, but:

    I would like to define a list of 'part types' a car should have.

    Car might have: Color, Engine, Stereo, Door nr, etc

    Then for Color, Engine, Stereo and Door nr I'd like to define criteria that must be met by a car in order to have those options.

    Like: Stereo only allowed for Toyota.
    Engine allowed for Toyota and BMW

    Does something like this make sense at all?
    Thank you for your comments!

    PS: Please show mercy, I am a beginner

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    Sure, this make perfect sense to me. Using your automobile example, I'd use three tables. One for manufacturer, one for options, one for "allowed options". Manufacturer would have a primary key defined (some column/attribute to uniquely identify each manufacturer), and so would options). The primary key for the "allowed options" table would be the combination of the primary key values from the manufacturer and the option (with foreign key constraints so that only values from the other tables can be used within the "allowed options" table).

    Using your example, you need to think a bit about how you want to track model years and which option values are allowed. Sometimes these change over time.

    -PatP

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    9
    Thanks PatP for your reply!
    following your example: what about possible values the option 'Engine' can take for 'Toyota'? Would I need two more tables for that? (i.e. one for a list of all Engines and another one to relate the allowed engines to the option 'Engine')
    This is what is not very clear to me.

    Thank you for your comments!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    It depends on how you plan to use the breakdowns. So far, you've only discussed lists of manufacturers and options, so options could include "4 cylinder Toyota", "6 cylinder Toyota", "4 cylinder Ford", and "4 Cylinder widget". If you need more power to manipulate the option data, so that you need to track more details about those options, then you have a more complex problem that might make those sub-tables necessary.

    -PatP

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