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Low Cost CAD

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  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Low Cost CAD
Posted by Don Stauffer on Thursday, January 28, 2021 4:31 PM

I used to have a great low cost CAD, Autosketch by AutoCAD.  The last low cost version did not work with Win10.  They now have a new version, but it is anything but low cost.

I have been trying free CAD programs, but have found nothing yet that is worthwhile.  Even if it looks like an okay program, the users manuals are written by ESL and unreadable, or by people that are more interested in showing everyone how smart and eridite they are rather than help the user.  Or the thing is so buggy as to be unusable.  What do I do now?  So-called low cost CAD seems to be even more expensive than 3D printers, one of the tools I want CAD for, but I can even use a decent 2D CAD for my current project.

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Thursday, January 28, 2021 5:12 PM

Draftsight by Dassault Systemes is what I have been using.  Up until recently, it was free, but now they're charging for it.  Still a pretty nominal cost, at 99$ per year for a subscription.  I'd still be using it if it weren't for the fact that my employer got me an Autocad license.  May still start a subscription for Draftsight though, because I like how it works.  Its not as buggy/clunky as Autocad.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    January 2021
Posted by PFJN2 on Thursday, January 28, 2021 7:15 PM

Hi,

Over the years I've used a variety of low cost 2D CAD programs like IntelliCAD or AcceliCAD, but eventually as I have moved more into 3D stuff I started using ViaCAD 3D by Punch CAD.  Unfortunately over the years the price of their 2D/3D or full 3D PRO versions has gone up a bit, but i still like it a lot.

Pat

PRS
  • Member since
    January 2021
Posted by PRS on Thursday, January 28, 2021 7:52 PM

I use Fusion 360 for designing 3d printed stuff. Lots of good tutorials online also.

Free for personal use.

https://www.autodesk.ca/en/products/fusion-360/personal

 

  • Member since
    April 2004
Posted by Jon_a_its on Friday, January 29, 2021 5:45 AM

I Started with Sketchup (not 3D watertight!), then academic versions of AutoCAD, Rhino, Dassault Systemes & Solidworks. (!)

Another vote for Fusion 360 (free for personal use) although I haven't used it a while.

 

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  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Friday, January 29, 2021 4:05 PM

I do have Fusion360.  I have had a hard time getting to use it- the bits of the manual and tutorials I have found are not that great :-(

Seems like a lot of authors do not understand the difference between a tutorial and a reference manual, and try to do both in one document.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    February 2021
  • From: NE England
Posted by boston1832 on Wednesday, February 17, 2021 6:18 AM

Don Stauffer

I do have Fusion360.  I have had a hard time getting to use it- the bits of the manual and tutorials I have found are not that great :-(

Seems like a lot of authors do not understand the difference between a tutorial and a reference manual, and try to do both in one document.

Hi Don,

I struggled with Fusion360 as well for quite a while. Eventually I came across this set of tutorials by an Australian guy who puts across the basics very well. He takes you through creating a series of fairly simple 3D components. Nothing too elaborate, but by the time I finished I had the skills necessary for what I needed, which was a simple but slightly awkward 3D print project.

As far as 2D software goes I've used TurboCAD for many years but it's become increasingly expensive and seriously buggy. I've now moved over to QCAD since I only really needed TurboCAD for 3D which F360 does so much better. Admittedly the QCAD documentation isn't brilliant but they do offer an ebook manual in their support package (about GBP30 per year here in the UK). QCAD seems to be fully AutoCAD compatible - I'm involved with a full-size steam loco restoration project and I've used it for reading and amending documents from fairly new versions of paid-for AutoCAD without any problems.

I hope that helps.

Tags: Fusion360 , QCAD

Regards,

Chris

  • Member since
    December 2002
Posted by 7474 on Friday, February 19, 2021 11:40 AM
Another vote for Fusion 360.
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