Question 1. You can use layout object script triggers to perform a find when you select from the drop down.
Question 2. You can use lookups to copy the data from the customer table ( think historical ). Here is a basic demo that Comment has.
Thank you for the response, I truly appreciate it. Filemaker has so many great features, but sometimes finding the one I need can drive me nuts. And as usual, it is a simple solution, just a little hard to figure out.