When building electronic devices, the build often proceeds in several stages. Usually the SMD components are placed and re-flowed in the first stage. In the second stage, most through-hole (THT) parts are mounted. Sometimes there are even more stages, for parts that are difficult to mount automatically, or that require special attention. One might also require that all assembled boards go through testing before they are confirmed as working and stock is added to the resulting sub-assembly part.
PartsBox supports multi-stage (partial) builds in the "Production" plan (and higher). At each build stage, it is possible to select the components that are to be assembled. Stock will be removed only for selected parts. Builds that are in-progress are listed in a separate section.
It is possible to have any number of builds in progress, with any number of stages for each build. Every build gets a unique id, which allows marking boards that are going through production and tracking them. Stages are automatically numbered and comments can be added to describe what has been done in each stage.
Once a build is done, it can be finished, which adds stock to the sub-assembly part associated with the project and makes that stock usable in other builds.
A multi-stage build is represented by the same ID Anything™ code, regardless the stage it is in (build progress), so that ID Anything™ labels can be attached even to incomplete devices. This allows for quick identification and access to information about builds that are in progress.
Multi-stage builds are an essential feature for automated production beyond tens of units.