How to insert BOM in Onshape Drawing and coming improvements in OpenBOM for Onshape

Onshape Insert BOM user interface was changed recently. It was a result of Onshape BOM improvement. But it raised a question that for some people new insert BOM command may be not less intuitive than the old one. In this article, I want to share details how to insert OpenBOM in Onshape new interface.

First let start from Insert BOM. Here is new user interface. It is tuned automatically to Onshape associative BOM. I can appreciate Onshape intuitiveness to show BOM dynamically, but it can be really cool to be able to switch this option off (after you see it once). I hope Onshape product managers are reading this blog :). I know they do…

Insert OpenBOM (application) user interface is hidden behind a new button. See the picture. When you click on this button an old familiar user interface is coming and you can select BOM application as you used to do before.

The following short video can give you an idea how to use it now.

So, what is next for OpenBOM and Onshape?

Here is a teaser… New stuff is coming — new OpenBOM Onshape application. We are thrilled by Onshape improving some BOM related features and more robust APIs to work with Onshape data. We are going to leverage it at OpenBOM.

In one of the coming OpenBOM releases, we’re going to introduce “Import from Onshape BOM” function that can allow you to bring BOM defined in Onshape in the assembly fly-out panel. We are also checking a possibility to create an automatic function to add OpenBOM BOMs for all assemblies (btw, tell me what do you think about it?) . So, stay tuned… New stuff will be coming soon.


To access insert BOM for OpenBOM app in Onshape drawing is a bit tricky now and I hope I clarified it for you. I also hope Onshape will provide a corrected behavior there. Beyond that, OpenBOM provides a robust and comprehensive tool to create BOM in Onshape. It allows you to do many thing that are very much unique — automatic thumbnail preview, extracting materials, dimensions, mass, integrate with McMaster Carr catalog and many others. Last, but not least, OpenBOM is capable to share data outside of Onshape. So, if your contractors, supply chain, procurement and anybody else needs to have access to BOM with data, OpenBOM can do it for you.

If you have any questions, please reach me out — oleg @ openbom dot com.

Best, Oleg

PS. Let’s get to know each other better. If you live in the Greater Boston area, I invite you for a coffee together (coffee is on me). If not nearby, let’s have a virtual coffee session — I will figure out how to send you a real coffee.

Want to learn more about PLM? Check out my Beyond PLM blog and PLM Book website.