LOL... I was yanking your guys' chains because you all seem to care very little about expenses. Clearly you have more disposable budget than I do. But, that is all good. We are who we are. I'm better off than some, apparently but quite a bit behind others.I have played with a bit of casting before I got my mill. Glad to see you settled on something. I haven't used SolidWorks in forever. I'm sure its even better than when I played with it.
I have used Pro E and Siemens UG-NX both for engineering firms. And have had some experience with Solidworks. I have used the free cad programs of Granite, Creo, and freeCAD plus evaluated a few others. EVERY CAD PROGRAM HAS ADVANTAGES AND PROBLEMS. Building a model seems to take the same amount of time independent of the program. The big advantage of CAD is that changes and drawing are faster. That is a big savings for companies. The general approach of all successful cad programs basics are the same so using one program is not that difficult then another. The layering of getting to features has to be learned but that just takes practice as does the approaches to get around the particular problem in each cad program. Cad program divide into two groups: those that retain a history of the steps taken. So each time a model is open the computer goes threw the history file to build the model. To alter the model or fix a crash requires going back in the history to make changes. This becomes almost impossible for huge models such as for a casting, metal or plastic of a housing. Often large sections of a build are thrown out. The other group has a file that is the end result like a step or Igus file, you have parameter for many features of the model which can be changed, and your model could crash so undue capacity is required. It typically is created when the model is saved so a working history exist between saving the model. Thus to change the model the person cuts away and then build the replacement if needed. The model does not crash the same. Usually a feature can not be done so a work around feature of features is made.LOL... I was yanking your guys' chains because you all seem to care very little about expenses. Clearly you have more disposable budget than I do. But, that is all good. We are who we are. I'm better off than some, apparently but quite a bit behind others.
FWIW, though. I think that SolidWorks beats the pants off Fusion. HOWEVER, it is far more difficult to learn. It is really geared more to the larger organization. Not diss'ing Fusion, but it isn't perfect for every situation.
Onshape also supports SprutCAM through an add-on though I rarely use that. They support several other CAM products the same way as well as Kiri:Moto.I really like Onshape and used it almost exclusively before I got my mill. The lack of CAM pulled me over to Fusion. Ironically, the CEO of OnShape is Jon Hirschtick who founded SolidWorks. Who knows if they'll glom on some CAM natively to OnShape, but for now I think VisualCamc is the only CAM extension specifically for Onshape? I haven't tried it though. Maybe it's not as crippled as Fusion is?