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  • mochinist
    replied
    Originally posted by Spin Doctor
    Happened with pencil and paper too
    That is no doubt true, but if I get a print that has actually been done with a pencil and paper and I'm talking a real print, that is scaled, dimensioned and not missing butt loads of information, it is pretty safe to say that the guy that made it probably knows what he/she is doing. With solid modeling I get prints that just look like the guy knows what they are doing.

    Leave a comment:


  • Spin Doctor
    replied
    Originally posted by mochinist
    Something I see a lot of is people designing parts that have no business designing parts
    Happened with pencil and paper too

    Leave a comment:


  • mochinist
    replied
    If you just need a simple 2d drawing you can't beat autocad or its clones, or a simple piece of graph paper and a pencil. I think a lot of people run for the computer any chance they can get when a lot of times they could just sketch it out and be building it already, I have a guy that works for me like that, luckily he is a good machinist and makes up for it in other areas, still annoys me though.

    Learning the command lines on Autocad will make you so much quicker. I know an engineer that does all of his work on an old version of autocad(v14 I think) anyways most of his machines have over 40,000 parts and its all drawn in there, no fancy 3D program and his parts are all smartly designed.

    Something I see a lot of is people designing parts that have no business designing parts, solid modeling programs have made this easy to do.
    Customer: "What do you mean you want $10k to make this part." Me: " We'll you have radiused and filleted(with non standard radiuses of course) every possible surface on the part, instead of telling me that the 4 countersunk holes are for a 1/4-20 screw you call out a hole size and a countersink size and left the default tolerance on of plus or minus .0001", and lastly you have a 4-40 threaded hole going 2 inches deep in 304 ss. You made a very nice picture though"

    rant off Thats nothing against solidworks

    Leave a comment:


  • ogopogo
    replied
    Turbocad and 3D design programs

    Hi, I cant afford Solid Works either , but am reasonably satisfied with the free version of Alibre Express (alibre.com - downloads.) It has limitations of course but I am glad I persevered with it. ( I printed out all the on screen tutorials)
    Alibre have a helpful user forum see alibre.com/forums
    Also a program of interest- CoCreate OneSpace Modelling Personal Edition at www.cocreate.com/One SpaceModelingPE.cfm
    For more reviews and articles re CAD see also manufacturing .cadalystcom
    Finally I also use TurboCad, ( V10.5)and would not describe it as you did. Coming from 40 plus years of manual drafting and design I initially found it difficult to use any CAD program, but now would not go back. For most smaller machined parts I prefer Alibre. Hope this helps.

    Leave a comment:


  • Nick Carter
    replied
    Originally posted by Bruce Griffing
    I'm interested in Rhino, but don't want to bother with the download trial if it does not meet some basic reqirements. These are difficult to discern from their website. Does Rhino support assembled parts? Can you move them relative to each other? In other words, can you do fit checks? Also - does it link up with a reasonable CAM package?
    You can group or create "blocks" that are assembled parts. Not sure if there's a way to check for fit other than by eye, although there are a ton of plug-ins that will do all sorts of FEA, etc stuff.
    Rhino will output in a slew of file formats so you can use just about any CAM package, as well most will accept Rhino's 3DM file, as it's an open source format. Many people use Visualmill with Rhino.

    Leave a comment:


  • Spin Doctor
    replied
    CAD is a tool. Nothing more, nothing less. As I stated before I like AutoCAD, but then it is what I am used to. If I got my start in SolidWorks I would most likely be saying what a kludge. But I think one thing all CAD systems need is a big enough monitor so that you can set the display setting high enough with out needing a micro scope to see what you are doing. This was done in AUtoCAD for a model ship competion I entered before my first wife got sick

    http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v1...rsenal%20Ship/

    Leave a comment:


  • Michael Hall
    replied
    For the money these are hard to beat and for the "once in a while user" the learning curve is not very steep.

    http://punchcad.com/products/viacad2d.htm $49

    http://punchcad.com/products/viacad2d3dV6.htm $99

    There are demo downloads available at punchcad.com

    BTW, just a satisfied user, no connection with punchcad.


    Michael

    Leave a comment:


  • RTPBurnsville
    replied
    SolidEdge has a free 2D package that is very nice. This is a professional quality software package, check it out.

    http://www.plm.automation.siemens.co...2d/index.shtml

    No connection, just a very happy user.....

    Leave a comment:


  • BigBoy1
    replied
    Getting Into CAD

    I'm one of the "old farts" that grew up doing engineering work with a slide rule and drawings with paper and pen. (I still have my slide rule on top of my computer as my "back-up" tool.) I've been wanting to get into CAD but the price has stopped me cold. I called Solidworks and asked about a CAD package and was told that they could get me going with a $4,000 software cost and $1,200 a year maintance fee.

    For that kind of money, I can sure buy a lots of pencils and paper!!!

    I looked on the internet and found places where you can get CAD packages for $50 but you download the software on-line. Sounds like a den of computer viruses.

    The problem I have is I don't want to buy a package and find it doesn't do what I want or is very hard to use. I tried a test package CD from Alibre Software and I couldn't even get their test CD to run. In calling there technical support line and I was just blown off because I didn't have there purchased package.

    Are they any reasonably priced CAD packages out there that are user friendly and where a test version can be had to try to see if they are what one wants? All I'm looking for is a package the will generate nice looking 2D drawings. This is for my own personal use, not for a company.

    Bill

    Leave a comment:


  • oldtiffie
    replied
    Just another tool

    There are some here who may just want to "test the water" so to speak and try out a simple package at little or no cost so as to see how it "fits and feels".

    Some have quite simple needs really and so may not need or want or be able to use any of the "high end" very sophisticated packages with all the "bells ans whistles" that go with it - not to mention the costs and "learning curves" - some of which are very "steep".

    Most simple and cheap or free CAD packages will do a lot of what is wanted in the shop.

    This package is free and was posted by "Steve" - many thanks Steve - as he uses it for his CNC - and he KNOWS and USES his CNC. If its good enough for him, its more than likely that it will do most if not all basic tasks that many may require in the shop. It is a simple "3-D"/"modeling" package with a very good tutorial:
    http://www.emachineshop.com/

    "Sketch Up" (from "Google") is very good too - especially the "free" version.

    CAD is all too often seen as an end in itself, whereas it is only another tool in the shop/"armoury" and as such is only a means to the end - the "job" you are doing.

    Its far too easy to "dive into the deep end" with CAD and just get over-awed or over-whelmed by it all and just "give it away and go back to basics".

    Some here may not have a high order of "math" skills, but with a bit of common sense, CAD can either solve or help you either solve or by-pass that problem.

    I have had AutoCAD since its very early days (25+ years ago - version 2.16 - which pre-dates "Windows"). I have 2004 on my machine as well as three other recent cheaper - and for my purposes now - even better CAD packages in many cases and they range from quite cheap, to very cheap to free. All have their uses and limitations and all perform very well. I have not "fired up AutoCAD" "in anger" for 15 years and will almost have to go back to "square one" and "re-learn it" which is not needed as the simpler cheaper packages "do it" for me now with my small shop and only occasional use.

    Most of the stuff that I'd use CAD for can be done on a calculator as I like to use and keep my basic math skills. So I sketch by hand and use my calculator.

    The simpler free/cheap packages have good tutorials and "help" files - use them and use them in order to as to develop basic skills and build on them is an orderly and systematic way - there are very good reasons for it.

    If anyone thinks that CAD is going to entirely eliminate the manual "sketch" or "scratch" pads they are in for quite a surprise - it just won't happen in many smaller/HSM shops.

    Many may have noticed that I sketch manually a lot and post to Photo-Bucket. I also use - and have used for years - my fax machine as I can sketch while I am thinking /talking on the phone and it can be on its way almost immediately to someone who wants it quickly or who (n)either has or uses a computer or a CAD package - and there are still a lot of them.

    I usually don't get past the "construction line" stage in either 2-D or 3-D in CAD as my problem has been solved at that stage and "finishing-off" is only putting lip-stick on the pig.

    So, its "horses for courses".

    Give it a try and stick with it. It can be as frustrating as hell at times, but when you over-come the problems and find out what its limitations and capabilities are in the way you want to use it either in or for your shop - you will glad you did.

    But do remember, that CAD is just another tool - nothing more and nothing less.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bruce Griffing
    replied
    I'm interested in Rhino, but don't want to bother with the download trial if it does not meet some basic reqirements. These are difficult to discern from their website. Does Rhino support assembled parts? Can you move them relative to each other? In other words, can you do fit checks? Also - does it link up with a reasonable CAM package?

    Leave a comment:


  • 3jaw
    replied
    I'm a big fan of AutoCAD but I must admit that I haven't used any of the other CAD packages so I don't have anything to compare it to. At one place I worked we used AutoCAD solids to design checking fixtures for automotive components. We did not have parametric solids so changes were a little bit of a pain (you get used to it though).

    I feel the real secret to AutoCAD is to learn to draw using the command line instead of trying to use the menus. I can fly through and design a simple part almost as fast as I could freehand sketch it with pencil and paper. My left hand is typing commands and my right is driving the mouse.

    Somenone complained earlier that they had to know beforehand what the length of a line had to be. Not so, the "OFFSET" command is your best friend and can be invoked simply by typing in the letter "o", enter the offset distance, pick the entity that you want offset and the side you want it on, and voila'. This is just one example of many shortcuts that can be used in AutoCAD that can speed up the design process.

    I guess the point to this whole thread is to find a CAD package that works for you and you are comfortable with. I don't think there is an absolute "Best" CAD program that works for everyone.

    Greg

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  • Nick Carter
    replied
    I love Rhino, best piece of software I've ever bought.
    One of the great things is their newsgroup. If you ask an question, even a stupid one, you'll get a bunch of helpful answers. Support is very important.
    There are usually multiple ways to do the same thing in Rhino, which means that you can develop a workflow that is comfortable for you.

    Leave a comment:


  • gellfex
    replied
    I'm with the "no pencil & paper" crowd. I've used Designcad for 18 years, played quite a bit with Solidworks and currently am a fan of Sketchup. What I like about Designcad and sketchup is that I can design the way I think. Stretch a piece here, or there. move this feature, scale down that. While Solidworks was amazing I found the workflow of design clunky for me. If I was doing a part for a production run, there no doubt it's superior, but even costs aside, it wasn't my favorite.

    I still use Designcad for 2D sketching, but have moved most of my 3D to sketchup. There's certain ways in Sketchup to emulate some of SW parametric features by using the "component" and mirroring commands.

    Leave a comment:


  • lazlo
    replied
    +1 Bill. Once you get hooked on 3D assemblies, you'll never go back

    Like Bill, Toasty, and others have said, the interface and creation flow on SolidWorks is superb -- it's really is like virtual machining of the part.

    Leave a comment:

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