PC-DMIS Excel Form Report

Published by CMMXYZ on April 9, 2020

This tutorial will demonstrate how to use the new Excel Form Report in PC-DMIS to generate a multi-piece inspection report. This new function in PC-DMIS also allows programmers to use their own custom Excel template in addition to the pre-loaded templates included in the CMM software.

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In this video, I want to show you how to append an Excel Form Report. I've done a video previously on the Excel Form Report. This was introduced a couple of years ago around about 2019, 2018. What I want to show you today is how to do a multiple part report, which will append a customized Excel template. I'll show you my template.

Here's a simple template I made up just for this demo. I'll have eight dimensions total, and four-part total. I'll run my program in a loop to show you how this template will be appended with each execution of my program. The other thing you need to know is where to put this template. PC-DMIS comes loaded with premade templates, but if you want to include your own Excel template in this tool, you need to put it in the right folder. I'll show you where to find that.

You can see the path where PC-DMIS has put it. They've put it in the Users > Public > Public Documents section of your computer. And you can see here, I have several versions of PC-DMIS installed. If you go to the one you're using, I'm using the new 2020 R1, let's open that, and you can see there's a folder called Excel Form Report. If we open that up, you can see the Template folder, and there's all the preloaded ones and you can see mine called cmmxyz.xlsx. By putting my template in this folder, I have access to it inside of PC-DMIS.

Here's my program. I just have two features with two dimensions, X, Y, Z, and diameter for each circle. I just keep it real simple, and I've just made my program run in a loop to simulate running four parts. I've done a few other things in my program. I have a variable for the date so it'll insert the date in a field of my choosing. I'll get to that in a moment. I also have two TraceFields, one including the variable for the date and the other one will be a prompt for the operator to choose their name from a dropdown list. Both of those will be plugged into my Excel Form.

The next thing we need to do is actually set up our Excel Form Report command. I'll do that right now. I'll put it inside the loop after my dimension infos right there. We find the Form Report under Insert, Report Command, and Excel Form Report. We have to do a little bit of setup if this is the first time we've used this template. In the Template dropdown, you can see some of the preloaded ones, AS9102, Five Part Study, and so forth. The one I want to use is this one here.

There's my template. The first thing I want to do is actually plug in my TraceField. You can see these cells here, Part Name, CMM Operator, Date. What I need to do is link that to a TraceField or information in my program. For part name, we're just going to give that a right-click, Refer to, Part info., and Part Name. The Part Name will just be plugged into there. CMM Operator, my program is actually a TraceField. I have two options here. I can drag it from over here and just put it into that field, or I can right-click, Refer to, and it'll give me a list of my TraceFields here. In this case it's the Date, which is in a TraceField. I'll just give that a click.

The next, we need to work with this row here, so row 5 in my template, and I need to drag over that information. DIM number will be a Counter so that it'll just count in sequential order, DIM 1 through 8. In my case, PCD ID. This PC-DMIS ID field here, I found that when you're appending, you need to have this included because I've tried to do an appended report without the PCD ID and it just doesn't work and I'm not exactly sure why. Let's just include that. Next, we'll go to Nominal. We'll just drag that over, and the rest. You can see how that works.

For an appended report, we need to actually drag over the Measured Value field for each part in my Excel template. I don't just do this once. I have to do this for every time I want to append the execution of my program. The next step is important. I need to highlight this row here, the entire row, right click, and I need to set this as a data area. When I do that, it'll turn yellow. That's very important. This will not work unless I do that.

Another very important thing that is different from the normal Excel Form Report, because this is being appended, I need to go to Report Settings down here on the lower left, and for my Part Name, I can't have a name that will be different with each execution. In other words, if I include a time in the name of the report like you can see down here, every time I run my execution, the Part Name will be different. That won't work for appended so this is very important. All you do is simply hit the drop-down and remove anything that will make a difference. To keep it simple, I'll just make it Part Name. My Part Name needs to be the same, which it will be every time I execute my program.

The next thing we can do in the Report Settings is set the location. I'll just keep it simple, put it on my Desktop. I have a folder called Inspection Reports where the completed appended report will go. That's it for here. I'll just click Okay. I will create my command line now just by hitting Create here. That's it. You can see it's down here, one of the last commands of my program. That's also important. This command line needs to be after my dimensions. If it's before my dimensions, won't work.

Let's scroll to the top of my program. You can see I've called my part name Excel Form Report 2, I was doing some testing earlier. I'll just keep it simple and call it Excel Form Report. That will be the name of my file that generates in that Inspection Report folder.

Let's run this and we'll see if this works. This is just part of my program. Because I'm running in a loop, I want to give the operator an opportunity to say how many parts am I running? In this case it'll be 4 so I'll just enter 4. and this is actually part of the new TraceFields, came out a few years ago, where we can have a dropdown for selections. For CMM operator name, I'll enter mine and I'll say Okay, and Okay to run, yes. There's part 1 and part 2, 3, and 4. Okay, good. Let's open up my report and see if it worked.

Here's my folder where I keep my inspection reports, and you can see it's generated a report. I'll give that a double click. Good. So it worked. You can see it worked exactly as I wanted it to. Obviously, all my results are the same because I'm working offline. But this is actually quite a breakthrough in PC-DMIS because a lot of customers have been asking for this. Essentially, up to this point, PC-DMIS was a one-off reporting software, but using the new Excel Form Report and the append function, you can now do multi-parts in one report. And it's not too difficult to do. A lot of the work is actually in Excel and then we just set our template inside of PC-DMIS, and we're good to go.

I just wanted to give a quick tutorial on the append function of Excel Form Reports because I've been getting a lot of questions about it in the last little while. I hope you found that useful. Thanks for joining me, and I'll see you next time.

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