Ram50Ron
Ram50Ron New Reader
7/12/18 2:01 p.m.

GRM engineering hive learn me what CAD package you use for personal projects.  I do a lot of CAD at work, on both Solidworks 2015 and Siemens NX12.  I have a student version of Solidworks 2016 at home that is set to expire in 20 days with no way to renew for free.  I still have access to my .edu email since I graduated less than a year ago so I cold possibly snag another student edition of some other CAD software.  I have a couple buddies that swear by Fusion 360 but the user interface seems a little clunky to me.  Has anyone used Fusion 360 that could offer any insight on it.  I know I probably just need to power through my dislike for it and get accustomed to it.  It's just hard to break 8 years of Solidworks use and 4 years of NX use for yet another CAD package.

I do have access to both Solidworks and NX12 on the work laptop at home but I'd rather do my personal projects on my personal laptop without corporate software licenses for to avoid potential personal IP conflicts.

WonkoTheSane
WonkoTheSane Dork
7/12/18 3:18 p.m.

I haven't used it extensively, but there will be some reprogramming if you're normally a SW pilot..  The biggest limitations seem to be on the higher-end stuff.  The 95%-of-the-project appears to be quite functional, though often not as polished or flexible as you're used to with either of the more professional offerings.   My friends using it say the biggest concern is the licensing & cloud storage/subscription model, not necessarily with the software which they've used to make some quite impressive assemblies.

 

For the price, as a home-gamer, I'd roll the dice for a while.   For a shop, the subscription model would keep me from even evaluating it.

pheller
pheller PowerDork
7/12/18 3:29 p.m.

I still wish I had the time and space to have a little 3D printer so I could prototype little doodads, then have some online CAD shop CNC said doodads in metal. 

ProDarwin
ProDarwin PowerDork
7/12/18 3:33 p.m.

Are you making a bunch of money off these projects, or is this just for hobby use?

If hobby use, try Solid Edge (free).  There is still some reprogramming, but its a lot closer to Solid Works.  Ignore all of its 'synchronous' BS, put it in 'ordered' mode and it will function just like a good parametric modeler.  I think its actually superior to NX in a number of ways.

I used it for 5 or 6 years IIRC.  Now I am stuck with NX at work.

Ram50Ron
Ram50Ron New Reader
7/12/18 3:49 p.m.

In reply to ProDarwin :

Intentional use is for hobbies.  I'm really just trying to separate work and play just incase I stumble into a patentable project or something that has potential for really small scale 3D printing revenue, nothing commercial.  I have a friend from college that designed and sold cupholders for a Honda CRX, I helped him with printing them when he got flooded for orders.

californiamilleghia
californiamilleghia Reader
7/12/18 4:36 p.m.

anyone use Qlone  to scan an object before putting it in a cad cam program to clean it up ?

Just wondering if its worth learning or if there is something better ?

pheller
pheller PowerDork
7/12/18 5:22 p.m.

What's Qlone?

californiamilleghia
californiamilleghia Reader
7/12/18 5:43 p.m.
pheller said:

What's Qlone?

its an app that has you take photos of your object and the app makes a 3d file out of the photos, 

look at YouTube

Johnboyjjb
Johnboyjjb Reader
7/12/18 7:13 p.m.

Fusion 360 allows free hobby use in the license. Also see Mike and Lauren's Fusion 360 class for info on how to get started.

https://www.learnfusion360.com/courses/fusion-360-for-hobbyist-and-woodworkers?coupon=YOUTUBE

 

Ransom
Ransom PowerDork
7/12/18 7:56 p.m.

In reply to Johnboyjjb :

Thanks for the class link!

Just starting to tinker with Fusion 360. Note that it's free until you make $100k. So it's home/hobby/startup.

I'm trying to learn a bunch because I haven't studied drafting since high school when it was mechanical pencils and vellum and OH MY GOD I'M THAT OLD GUY NATTERING ON ABOUT THE ARCHAIC TECHNOLOGY OF HIS YOUTH!

Sorry 'bout that.

Stefan
Stefan MegaDork
7/12/18 8:23 p.m.

In reply to Ransom :

I graduated in 95 and we still used paper and pencil in our drafting class before we got to play with the IBM PCjr’s with AutoCAD on them.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin PowerDork
7/12/18 9:02 p.m.
californiamilleghia said:

anyone use Qlone  to scan an object before putting it in a cad cam program to clean it up ?

Just wondering if its worth learning or if there is something better ?

I've used something similar.  It sucks if you want to engineer off those surfaces.

californiamilleghia
californiamilleghia Reader
7/12/18 9:10 p.m.
ProDarwin said:
californiamilleghia said:

anyone use Qlone  to scan an object before putting it in a cad cam program to clean it up ?

Just wondering if its worth learning or if there is something better ?

I've used something similar.  It sucks if you want to engineer off those surfaces.

can you explain ?

I thought it would be easier to start with something like a Qlone scan than start with a blank page !

But I really know very little and am just starting.....

ProDarwin
ProDarwin PowerDork
7/12/18 9:14 p.m.

Well, first of all a scan usually comes in as a point cloud or a mesh.  Many CAD softwares are terrible at working with these, if you can work with them at all.  Second, the quality of the scan is usually pretty poor.  Its ok for a visual representation or very approximate details, but nothing that needs to be accurate.

Here's a post about it from a few years ago:  https://ilostmysocketwrench.wordpress.com/2014/12/29/diy-3d-scanning-2/

Ram50Ron
Ram50Ron New Reader
7/13/18 12:02 a.m.

One of my friends told me that you can get a free copy of Solidworks if you are an EAA member. Looks like a 3 year membership is $100.

Linkerino

That might not be a bad way to go for me. I still want to try Fusion 360 I might have to force myself to use it on my next printing project.

 

Ram50Ron
Ram50Ron New Reader
7/13/18 12:05 a.m.

In reply to californiamilleghia :

I have not. I used to play with a Romer Arm laser scanner a lot at my last job so picture based "3d scanners" aren't really worth the trouble in my book. Even working off of an imported STL from the romer arm was a serious pain in the butt, that is if I could get it to import without crashing NX.

 

Ram50Ron
Ram50Ron New Reader
7/13/18 12:11 a.m.

In reply to Stefan :

I graduated high school in 2012 and I did some paper drafting in one of my tech ed classes in high school since we didn't really have CAD or anyone that knew how to teach it even.  I'm glad I never had to do any serious engineering that way, I give anyone who did serious props.

Brotus7
Brotus7 HalfDork
7/15/18 11:38 a.m.

I learned SW in college, but have used NX daily for the better part of the last decade.  For me, the software choice is largely a function of what I'm trying to do.  I've found SW to be the simplest software to use when designing a tubeframe chassis using it's 3d sketches and weldment function.

I prefer NX for almost anything else, but that's probably a function of seat time.  Recently, I've dabbled in Fusion at home and I'm pretty impressed. Modelling is very straightforward, although I haven't done any assemblies or kinematic stuff yet though.  Honestly, the best part is that the hobby license includes the FEA package.  Again, it's like Work bench light in that the mesh controls look basic, but it's a real solver powered by NASTRAN and it's free.

Ram50Ron
Ram50Ron Reader
8/30/18 3:28 p.m.

Just wanted to update this thread.  I now have a fresh license of Solidworks 2018.  I ended up signing up for an EAA membership, I figured the $40 a year is a convenience charge I'm willing to pay for software I am familiar with. 

bigeyedfish
bigeyedfish New Reader
8/30/18 3:44 p.m.

I missed this thread when it started.  I used Fusion 360 in a production shop for a few months.  The vast majority of the business was machining steel plates, and for that application it was great.  Easy to learn.  Solid 2.5 axis usability.  So cheap that the first job pays for the whole year.

I'd like to work with SolidWorks more and that license is cheap enough I might do it just to develop those skills.  At my current job we use Inventor and I hate it.  When I need something modeled (not terribly often) I just get an intern to do it.

2002maniac
2002maniac Dork
8/30/18 4:38 p.m.

Interesting to see a few NX users in here. I've been an NX user for 6 years, now transitioning to Creo for NC programming.

From what I've seen Fusion 360 seems extremely capable for the price.

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