Free and easy to learn 3D CAD

Related to all sorts of CAD and CAM tools. Users should post questions, comments, and recommendations with respect to their favorite CAD and CAM tools.

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Patio
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Re: Free and easy to learn 3D CAD

Post by Patio » Fri Mar 16, 2018 11:23 pm

I think Solidworks was the easiest to use, starting from, not knowing much. I thought it to be pretty intuitive, in operation, and easy to set clearances and locate interferences.
I use Fusion 360 now. I think it is real close to SW, in operations and the price is better for hobbyist (free).
It now has a sheet metal section, (Draw it in 3D, then fold it flat). It does Animation, (Stress tests). It does CAM, (generates G-code).
It can make drawings from the 3D part, where you place only the dimensions you want seen. For me, this is the best part, being I have manual machines, and I can take the drawings to my shop.
I do not know how to set clearances with it yet. (Guess I need to go figure that one out! :) ).
It also allows one to collaborate with others, within the software, as a guest.
Either way, I find it easy to use, extremely powerful and very useful.
Just another opinion.
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Prepare for tomorrow!
Forgive the past!

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JohnR
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Re: Free and easy to learn 3D CAD

Post by JohnR » Sun Aug 26, 2018 5:01 pm

Anybody taken a look at cad software called " freecad ". pretty powerful.
A lot of people are using it in the 3d printing community.

John Hasler
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Location: Elmwood, Wisconsin

Re: Free and easy to learn 3D CAD

Post by John Hasler » Sun Aug 26, 2018 5:55 pm

I've used it. Powerful but complex and somewhat buggy. Don't select "US Customary Units" from the "Units" menu ro you will forced to dimension in inches, feet, and yards (they are European and I think they did that intentionally to thumb their noses at us). Select "Imperial". Freecad also has lots of libraries and add-ons.

I'm currently checking out Solvespace (http://solvespace.com/index.pl). Seems simpler to use and more solid than Freecad but more limited. For example, You *will* have three decimal place in Imperial and two in metric.

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ChipsAhoy
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Location: Arizona

Re: Free and easy to learn 3D CAD

Post by ChipsAhoy » Tue Jan 29, 2019 9:39 am

I've spent the better part of the last three months trying to wrap my head around this computer 3D drawing stuff. It is a very tall learning curve for me. BUT, all is not lost....
I tried, FreeCad, Onshape, Tinker Cad, Fusion and Solidworks.
Hands down the easiest for me to learn was Solidworks. Not just running the program, but getting a handle on the concepts. I have a long ways to go, but things seem to be moving along faster now. I highly recommend it over the few I've tried. Now comes interfacing with the 3D printer, it takes another software cutter, Cura seems to be OK. I don't think that I'm going to start trying a bunch of others. BTW, all my targets are to create filetypes *.stl to go to the Ender printer.

RMinMN
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Re: Free and easy to learn 3D CAD

Post by RMinMN » Thu Feb 28, 2019 6:57 am

I started CAD just a few weeks ago with Fusion 360 and slice for 3-D printer with Cura. Both have steep learning curves but both have a lot of power too. Fortunately the filament is cheap and I'm not under any deadline so when I make a mistake and the printed object comes out wrong it isn't a major cost. I have spent a lot more time on Fusion 360 than on Cura but I'm learning to make the two programs work to my advantage.

John Hasler
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Location: Elmwood, Wisconsin

Re: Free and easy to learn 3D CAD

Post by John Hasler » Thu Feb 28, 2019 8:22 am

John Hasler wrote:
Sun Aug 26, 2018 5:55 pm
[In Solvespace] you *will* have three decimal place in Imperial and two in metric.
I've since learned that this is incorrect. The documentation implies this but you can have as many decimal places as you wish.

earlgo
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Re: Free and easy to learn 3D CAD

Post by earlgo » Sun Mar 03, 2019 9:00 pm

I am bummed out. I have been using SolidWorks since 2000 in the jobs I worked. The last place allowed us to have a home user license and this year on Feb 28 the SW 2008 timed out. I am at a big loss as I am not a veteran and am not likely to be a student again, so I don't qualify for the student version.
Guess I'll go shed tears in my beer. :(
--earlgo
Before you do anything, you must do something else first. - Washington's principle.

earlgo
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Location: NE Ohio

Re: Free and easy to learn 3D CAD

Post by earlgo » Wed Apr 10, 2019 1:27 pm

Ran out of tears for the beer, so I logged into ONSHAPE, the cloud version,(sorta') of Solid Works and have been working my way through the lessons while doing models relevant to the lessons. It still isn't SW but it may be after I get a leg or two up.
--earlgo
Before you do anything, you must do something else first. - Washington's principle.

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