Is there an elegant way to have multiple partnumbers for one component?

With the current component shortage, I sometimes want to give a component some alternate part numbers to have the option to choose between different manufacturers for example.
This might come in handy for parts like EEPROMs or voltage regulators when the design does not require hard specifications which leaves a vast choice of possible, pin- and function-compatible parts.

As of now, I just concatenate them in the value field, separated by slashes.
This has the side effect, that the schematic either has to provide enough space for the looong value filed, or it gets unreadable.

Is there a “mechanism” in KiCad that allows to add alternate part numbers and only show the one I would select as default?

Industry solved his before we were born with “House numbers” where the private number indexed a list, later a database of approved alternatives

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I would recommend either storing them in separate fields (hidden, only exported) or storing the relationship between the “driving” part number (the one in the KiCad design) and various alternates through an external mechanism.

I read a bit, well in fact it was quite a lot of searching and reading :wink:

Learned that there is a powerful BOM generator in EESchema and added an Alt_Part field.

Also learned that the script has to remain in the original plugin folder, having it stored in the user plugin folder (on windows), fails to load the modules…

My way is to always create/use my own libraries (mostly copied from the main libraries).
You can alias any part based on a “main” part.
You’ll see this in the standard libraries as well, where the aliased parts have deignators in italics.
This is a neat and tidy way of doing it, but does require you to modify the schematic file when changing the part.

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