One of the biggest question that we are faced; “How should I be creating a model in a single part, assembly, or combination of these two?” What we need to know is to compare and contrast some of the aspects of these method and apply to your respective project.
It is also essential for you to identify the actual deliverables, the final output use of the project, what are the types of drawing be needed in the assembly file, and how are the files needed being shared with to manufacture the components.
In the design intent phase, we need to specify the model itself and how the design information is going to fit the shapes and variations into sketches, features, and component parts to one another. The complexity of the product and the interdependency of the component parts to one another is one factor that will help you determine which method or combination of methods to use.
Other factors to consider would be how to handle materials, mass properties, components that need to move and rotate, bill of materials, exploded views, and fastening components including insert nuts / threaded inserts.
To ensure that the output results meets the deliverable requirements, evaluate the advantages whether to insert a part to another part file or to create an assembly, what fastening features would be required such as Lip /Groove, Mounting Boss, or Snap Hooks. Also, if any of the mentioned feature could be achieved through multibody and assembly techniques.
Further evaluation will be required should you consider the two method; Multibody and assembly techniques. For instance, creating a multibody part can be done using what is commonly referred to as “master part” technique, or just be a collection of separate bodies tied together by shared sketches. As you add features, you can choose to merge with previous adjacent bodies, or create a new body with the feature. There are several methods for dividing up bodies into more bodies such as Split or the new for 2013 Intersect tools.
If you are creating the individual in-context parts in an assembly, it may be more difficult to blend complex shapes between components, but you can easily share some shapes and profiles of parts within the same assembly using such tools as offset surface, convert/offset edges, and derived sketch.
With the above context we could conclude that; yes, you would be able to create a model in a single part, assembly, or combination of these two.
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