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  • #16
    Originally posted by BillH
    SolidWorks, ask the kid next door where to find it.

    Take the hint!!!
    The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

    Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

    Southwestern Ontario. Canada

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    • #17
      Originally posted by tony ennis
      What are some affordable CAD packages suitable for what we do?
      Boy, there should be a CAD sticky, no?

      It's the "we do" that's the rub. Some guys here produce production drawing for parts to be mass produced, some are designing for CAM production, and some of us just need a drawing of what we want to make to walk into the shop with.

      If you're in the last camp with me, try Google Sketchup. It's free, and incredibly powerful considering that price. It's learning curve is much easier than any of the "pro" systems, (I've tried many of them) but you can create highly accurate dimensioned drawings of just about anything you could make in a machine shop.

      Here's a recent project of mine, with part of the housing hidden. I could have drawn the teeth on the gears, but since this was just for me, I didn't bother. There's some part libraries out there, but they're so bulkily drawn they slow down the render too much.

      Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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      • #18
        Originally posted by John Stevenson
        This comes up every 3 months and there is no answer as it depends on what you want to do
        George: we really need a sticky.
        "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Ken_Shea
          I have but never used, Alibre so I cannot speak for it's ease of use, but it is suitable for 2D and 3D.
          I used the freeware version of Alibre for awhile, and I hate the klunky interface and design flow.
          I tried SolidWorks, and it's lightyears better in terms of GUI and the design flow is a lot like you're machining the model from the solid.

          Alibre is also built on a kludgey Java engine (seriously), so it's a memory pig, and has had a lingering issue with memory leaks.
          Alibre has been promising that they're going to remove the Java engine for awhile, but the last time I checked (about 6 months ago) they were still using it...

          If I had to choose, unless I really needed the 3D modeling, I'd go with SolidEdge...
          "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

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          • #20
            When you compare price and ease of use I don't believe there is a better package out there, IMO.

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

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


            Michael

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            • #21
              Tony,

              These were done in full version Alibre. I'm pretty sure they could also have been done in the free version.





              (These were for planning my EDM to mill conversion)

              And a telescope:



              I'm not a machinist or engineer and I can draw something useably decent as long as it's not too complicated - but it can take time. For me the big advantage of the 3D view is seeing interference and clearance in assemblies.

              Gary

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