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Tin Falcon

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A you may know I am looking for a usable cheap or free 3d cad program.
I paid good money to use alibre then felt dumped.

I have been playing with free cad but!!!...... it is free and about due for a serious update may be more usable soon.

Today I learned about design spark mechanical. It is for electronics designers but looks promising and it is free. the hope is you use the library of components from RS/ Allied electronics and buy there parts.

And there is autodesk fusion 360 interesting free for students and enthusiasts. $300 per year for professional use. or 40 per month. They seem to encourage storage of files on there site and I got a popup warning that the site was tracking MY computer location. after i accidental downloaded the download.exe file hmm not a warm fuzzy.

I read a couple of good reviews on design spark. Looks good will produce an stl file and is free and i would not expect spy ware attached.


anyone use either program.

Tin
 

barnesrickw

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I've heard you can find it on some place called "pirate bay", but I legally purchase all of my software so I don't know much about that kind of stuff.


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littlelocos

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Hey Tin,
Have you looked at TurboCAD lately? Their "Deluxe" version runs $129. Not free, but has no strings or expiring subscriptions attached. I use the Pro/Platinum version for all of my CAD work and have enjoyed working with it for probably 10+ years. The Deluxe version does 3D and outputs STL files as well. Other than being a dedicated user, I have no connection with TurboCAD.

Check it out at: http://www.turbocad.com/TurboCAD/TurboCAD-Windows/TurboCAD-Deluxe-21

Enjoy,
Todd.

Todd Snouffer
Littlelocos Model Engineering
www.littlelocos.com

p.s. TurboCAD Deluxe also comes with the "phone-a-friend" option if you should get stuck or something. :)
 

John Rus

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I don't know if you checked out progecad or not but the free version has basic 3D capability and the pro version has full 3D capability. I haven't dabbled much with the 3D part of it yet but I really like the user interface and enjoy working with it very much. It's very similar to autocad in form and function.

Hope this helps,
John.
 
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Tin Falcon

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I've heard you can find it on some place called "pirate bay", but I legally purchase all of my software so I don't know much about that kind of stuff.


Sent from my iPad using Model Engines
Rick I think you misunderstood. In no way was I asking for or suggesting anyone get involved in pirated software.

The design spark software is completely free for all users it is intended for professional use the only string I see is you need to give basic personal or professional info.


Autodesk fusion is a 90 free trial and then free for students and enthusiasts.

My concern is the string is that they monitor how you use the software.
the ying is it is there software and they are letting people use it on a non profit basis for free. the Yang is I am not fond of others poking in my personal computer.
tin
 

sssfox

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dieselpilot

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Fusion 360 certainly looks capable for the money. Don't they disclose specifically the data they are tracking? Does it do detail drawings yet?
 

barnesrickw

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I have an older copy of turbo cad I was going to sell on e-bay. But it's v12, and only 2D.


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barnesrickw

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Sorry Tin, trying to be funny.


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RonGinger

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So what is wrong with Alibre? Yes, the company has new owners and they made a change to a dumb name, but the program still runs exactly as it did before. There are also upgrade paths to the newer version, for money of course, but it it still an excellent bit of software.
 

Tin Falcon

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So what is wrong with Alibre? Yes, the company has new owners and they made a change to a dumb name, but the program still runs exactly as it did before. There are also upgrade paths to the newer version, for money of course, but it it still an excellent bit of software.
I agree Ron That Alibre By any other name is still excellent software for the money.

My gripe with them (and this was discussed in the cubify thread) is I have given them IIRC $300 over the last three years. And they wanted IIRC 3-4 hundred to renew.
I expected that if/when my subscription ran out I would no longer be able to upgrade and would not be able to call or email for support. What I did not expect is the program to freeze and not open when the subscription period ended.
I made two phone calls to 3-D sys geomagic any only got a recorded message. I called 3-D sys cubify and was told there is no licence transfer from Albre PE and I would have to pay $ 199 for a licence but there is no expiration and no annual fee.

I may buy into it I do like the product it does what I want . But I would much rather put that two hundred towards a 3 - d printer.

Bear in mind I do not put all the blame on 3-D sys and I may have erred in how I handled the transfer to the new product and probably should have communicated to them before my licence expired.

I am drooling over the $499 - $570 3 -d printers but when I add in shipping a couple rolls of plastic some spare parts and $200 for software my stomach gets queezy and I lose my enthusiasm.

I want to be able to draw in 3 ,export an stl for a printer and easily make dimensioned 2-d drawings from my 3d part. and the only program I know will do that is the geomagic design at lease one I can afford.
Other programs I have tried are enough different I am struggling to model a part.
I am considering downloading OpenSCAD. The downside is a steep curve and will take time to learn. the upside I will be learning a scripting language and it is open source.


I guess the bottom line here is I do like alibre PE now replaced by Geomagic design but resent paying another $200 to use it .

I want fast easy 3-D modeling with output for 3-printing and 2-d drawings.
Tin
PS
I did download resister and open designspark mechanical . it is huge program Probably excellent for designed purpose. But not sure if it right for me and my purposes. will leave it installed for now.
 

clivel

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Although I have no experience with DesignSpark Mechanical, I have been a happy user of DesignSpark PCB for a few years now, it is an excellent product, especially given the price - free.
Based on my experience with PCB, I think it would be well worth devoting a few hours to taking DesignSpark Mechanical for a test drive.
 

kquiggle

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Based on a quick look at the product site, it was not clear to me what CAD formats are supported by DesignSpark Mechanical. It appears that it will import Sketchup files, but otherwise uses a it own CAD format. Can anyone tell me if this is correct? I mention this becasue the ability to import from and export to other software may be an important consideration for some people.

Related to this topic, I have prepared an overview of free CAD software (with links) for those interested:

https://sites.google.com/site/lagadoacademy/miscellaneous-projects/free-cad-software---overview
 

Tin Falcon

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You could try this new Free-cad program >>

http://www.freecadweb.org/

Full 3D and parametric associations
.

I have it installed and am attempting to learn it sometimes I get it to make shapes I want.

if I draw a square or circle and pad or extrude i get a solid object. like i want if I draw a rectangle with rounded ends and extrude I get something that looks like a horse watering tub. It extrudes the outline not the whole thing and yes the solid object block was checked.
It is a viable option if I can learn it.
Tin
 

dave-in-england

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.

I have it installed and am attempting to learn it sometimes I get it to make shapes I want.

if I draw a square or circle and pad or extrude i get a solid object. like i want if I draw a rectangle with rounded ends and extrude I get something that looks like a horse watering tub. It extrudes the outline not the whole thing and yes the solid object block was checked.
It is a viable option if I can learn it.
Tin

~~~~~~~~~

Tin,

I loaded the cad program and tried it for two hours.

Seems to be a good, but cheap plastic version attempt at Solidworks.

I use Solidworks 2010 and 2012 full time.

You could spend years learning this free program,

or I would suggest,

that you find a friendly Military Veteran, or a College student, and give them

$50 cash to obtain for you the Student version of Solidworks.

Then you can spend a year learning the real cad program :wall: ! Ha Ha.

There is just about nothing that Solidworks cannot do,
( Once you learn how to do it :eek: )

Unfortunately, the student and Vet versions are 2013 issue onwards, and will not run on Windows XP, so you will need to check if your computer system will support it.

The student and Vet versions will run for one full year, for $150 or less.


https://store.solidworks.com/veteran/default.php


dave

.
 

Till

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if I draw a square or circle and pad or extrude i get a solid object. like i want if I draw a rectangle with rounded ends and extrude I get something that looks like a horse watering tub. It extrudes the outline not the whole thing and yes the solid object block was checked.
It is a viable option if I can learn it.
Tin
Even the objects are called solid, they aren't. They are made of surfaces, the programm calculates the boundaries and hides everything outside of the boundaries.

The solids are hollow. Hide one of the faces and you can have a look inside.

I installed the programm some time ago but never started it, so here we go. I don't understood what you want as a result, so I tried both.

Open the sketcher and make a sketch. Apply constraints until fully solved. It turns green. and says fully solved.
(I can't read the dimensions either. I don't know where to change font style sorry)


1. Variety
Open "Part" in the drop down menu
Press ctrl+A the outline turns green
click extrude
choose the direction, enter a number
click "set to axometric view" on the top right of the window
click apply


press ctrl+Z to undo if that's not what you wanted.

2. Variety
Open "part design" in the drop down menu
press ctrl+A the outline turns green
click pad
enter a number
click "set to axometric view" on the top right of the window
click apply



Is one of these what you wanted to archive?
Off topic: how can I remove the large previews from "attached images" in the forum?

picture1.jpg


picture2.jpg


picture3.jpg
 

Tin Falcon

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Dave in England thanks for the fantastic suggestion. According to the link the Veteran cost is only $20 per year. I served over 20 years in the reserves and have a couple DD214s probably the smart way to go. I know about this program . It has been crazy the last few weeks and kind of forgot about that program. running win 7 so should not be a problem.



Till thanks for the help.

sounds like i need to constrain myself or I mean constrain the elements of the part then pad instead of extrude.

Tin
 

Till

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Yes that's the usual way in every cad program. Elements on the screen must be defined precisely so the program can create unambiguous data you can perform operations with later.

I recommend using one of the big established cad-programs, too (if you can afford it).
Here are some reasons for the hobbyist:
-You’ll find lots of help, tutorials, parts, data tables, scripting and extensions online
-They already include lots of features that allow you to create complicated objects and perform difficult operations with very few clicks or even all at once in no time. Most of these could be used for the very easy creation of totally different things they weren’t intended for.
-They include very powerful algorithms to “guestimate” what you’ll actually want to do while working. eg suggesting operations or automatically setting numerical parameters in an intelligent, useful way while you are moving the mouse over a geometry or by clicking a special point, or, or, or… dramatically increasing your working speed
-Most of the functions have already proven to work actually in the way it was intended ;)

With CAD you don’t “draw” anything, what you do is modelling. Modelling something can be done in many different ways, same for the many different numerical operations behind the scene (including precision) that are usable to reach that point and store it someway.
The outcome may look similar or identical, but further operations and usage of your work is very limited by the way your work was created.
CAD is all about creating data.
Today, the big established cad-programs allow you to create data of very high quality.

One of the big downsides (probably unimportant for most hobbyists) is that documentation on how the programs work behind the scene - not training - eg algorithms used and how to access them, interfaces to manipulate them, has become more difficult to obtain lately, even for good money. That kind of Information was often provided for free with previous versions in the past.

The market has shrunken to a few big players and they are well aware of it.
 
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