Creating (custom) BOM Properties

In OpenBOM, a BOM Property is a data attribute, for example, Part Number, Quantity, Description. Think of a BOM property the same way you would a column header in a spreadsheet.  There are two kinds of properties:

Public.  All properties defined by you or anyone registered toOpenBOM are available for use.  Public properties cannot be duplicated.  That is to say, a Public property once created, for example, “Supplier Type” can be used by any other registeredOpenBOM user.  Anyone trying to create a new property with the name “Supplier Type” will be notified that particular property already exists.

Private. A unique property (i.e., not a Public property) defined by a registeredOpenBOM user in a “Property Table” will be available only to that user or another registeredOpenBOM user the Property Table is shared with.

Note: Part Number is a default Public property that is automatically created with every new BOM.

Here’s how you create Properties within a BOM:

There are two ways to create a Property within a BOM. Click the Property icon in the tool bar in a BOM view

Or click the “v” next to a property name existing property to view the drop-down menu. Properties can be created either to the Left or Right of the chosen property using “Insert property on left” or “Insert property on right“:

Next, enter and search for a Property name when prompted.

NOTE: By default, Public properties will be included in the search.  Otherwise, only Private properties will be searched if you uncheck “Include public properties.”  If you enter a Public Property that already exists, you will have the opportunity to select that pre-existing property. Otherwise, if it’s a new property you will be given the option to create it as a new Public property or a new Private property, even if that Property is a pre-existing public property. Let’s start with a pre-existing Public property…

Here’s a screenshot where we enter a pre-existing public property, “Quantity”.  All existing public properties matching “Quantity” are searched and returned.


Once you found the desired public property, in this case, “Quantity”, click on it. This is what you will see:

Click “Add” to add “Quantity” to the BOM:

Repeat for each property you wish to add.

Here’s an example where we create a new Property that didn’t exist before, “ACME Part Type”. You’ll note that an option is available for keeping the new Property public by leaving “Public” checked or making it Private by unchecking “Public” and assigning it to a Private Property table (learn more about Property tables):

There are seven (7) property types available to choose from when creating a new Property.  These include: Number, Text, List, Multi-selection list, Reference, Image, and Checkbox.  Learn more about the different Property types by clicking, here.

Special note regarding removing an image from an Image property: Cached images are saved in about 15 minutes. If you add and then wish to remove an image from your BOM, you’ll need to wait 15 minutes before it is permanently removed.

Once added, “ACME Standard Part” is a public property available to all OpenBOM users to see and use in their BOM.

Let’s add one more property to our BOM, this time we’ll create a Private Property and assign it to a pre-existing Property Table.  In our example, we’ll add a new Private property that has special significance for your company and you don’t wish it to be Public, “ACME Internal Cost”.  Note: Uncheck “Public” under “Create new property” to ensure the new property is indeed made private:

Select desired Property type and a Property Table you have already created, e.g. “Company Internal”:

Click “Add” and two things will happen. (1) The property will be added to your BOM:

And (2), “Acme Internal Cost” will be added to the Private Property Table, “Company Internal” and available only to you and those you have shared the “Company Internal” Property Table with.