How to Automate Your Electrical Schematics Part II

Article by Delvin Masilamani updated June 19, 2011


Now that you have been introduced to Options and Variants, there are a few common questions that customers ask me all the time –

  1. Where can you apply it?
  2. How can you apply it?
  3. What happens to the Bill of Materials?

Before I answer these questions I would like to point out that you have to make options before you can assign them. You make options and variants in the Options & Variants Tab in the project window.

The answer to the first question is you can apply it anywhere in your design. The Options and Variants can be applied to all the sections of your design. Application can be symbol specific or device specific, that is you can choose to turn Remove/Change just a contact of a relay or the entire relay with the Options and Variants. As E3 WireWorks keeps everything associated your panel is also kept up-to-date!!!

The second question would be more interesting if I were to post a video (Coming Soon) , but for the time being – There are multiple ways of assigning options and variants.

  1. Select all the devices you want to assign the same options you want to assign and right click and choose assign options menu item and make the appropriate choice.
  2. You can simply right click on a device and either go to assign options menu item again if you just want to assign options or go to device properties and Options and Variants tab and assign options or variants.
  3. You can also right click on the device in the device tree and assign options and variants from there.

We have already spoken about modular designs and saving parts of you design with Sub-Circuits. Options and Variants can be a part of that Sub-Circuit. So the next time you want to have a part of your design which can be configured you can just drag and drop from the library just like any other component and you will have not just the your saved design but also the Options and Variants that you added to that.

This has been really helpful to a lot of customers because it takes modular design to a whole new level.


The Modular Designs that we spoke about can also have the options and variants and these are carried with the design. So the Next time you pull a design that you have saved into your project the options and variants are included in your project. You can disable these options and variants as in any normal project, you have complete control. Just because you pulled in a Modular Design does not mean that you cannot change it you can if that is the need of the hour.

As for the Bill of Materials (B.O.M), E3.WireWorks keeps it updated at all times. If you are adding Sub-Circuits the devices are added to you B.O.M and if you are changing the Options and Variants the Bill of Materials is kept up-to-date according to the changes you have made using the Options and Variants. This hold true for all the reports E3 WireWorks lets you generate.

Read Part III

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Delvin Masilamani

Delvin is ‎Senior Solutions Expert at Javelin and is based in our Oakville, Ontario office.