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Need Low Cost Autocad Replacement

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Baithog

Florida Machinist Group Moderator
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#61
I have been looking for a 3D modeling program to do drawings for manual and CNC that I could afford. I have TurboCad, but not the high dollar version that would interface completely with CAM. Sketchup was promising, but the learning curve was daunting and, again, only the pay version really was an all round CAD. I downloaded Fussion 360. and I am enjoying it. It has decent tutorials that are available through the help menu. I have not gotten beyond drawing yet, but it is supposed to do CAM without having to sell your kids to use it. It does dimensions in the sketch unit of the program and can export to STL and DXF. I have worked myself through the sketch and create features and have managed to produce a mostly complete model of the base casting of a mini mill. There are some holes missing, the mounting tabs, and some of the webs on the underside.
2016-02-26 (2).png
I am looking forward to being able to apply my planned modification to the model before committing to metal.
 

Groundhog

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#62
Im looking at a 3d modelling program to replace inventor? I use a work computer to play around with to learn but I just dont get how the programs thinks? Nothing is intuitive to me? I get that frustrated with the way it flips things around when you go from 3d to sketch.

I have turbocad and it just cant do what I want in 3d. I find 2d stuff fairly easy on any of them, im probably doing it wrong as I have had no training but I can get what i need out of it. But when it comes to 3d im stumped. Have been told solidworks is more intuitive than inventor but i can not afford that.
Any suggestions.
I am an ex-autocad user turned Turbo Cad user. I've been using Turbo Cad Platinum for quite awhile, but haven't upgraded since V18 (2 or 3 versions old). I use it daily for both 2D and 3D drawings for my CNC Mill. Turbo Cad Platinum will do anything I can dream up in 2D or 3D. I think the basic (and maybe pro) versions are a lot more restrictive. However, I see the new version of platinum is around $1,600 - which is the reason I'm still with an older version.
 

C-Bag

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#63
As a further suggestion you might not have heard of I'll throw out CorelCAD. I'm a pencil and t square guy and as far as digital goes am a CorelDraw user. When I upgraded my CorelDraw it offered me CorelCAD for cheap and went for it. It installs and works great on Win7 but I've not had a reason to really dig into it as I don't have any CNC machines. It seems to compare well to AutoCad in basics and I've read where several AutoCad folks went to it because you could actually own it.
 

shooter123456

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#64
Another perk of the Fusion 360 that I discovered on the weekend is that is includes a basic stress analysis add-on. I am blown away that Autodesk lets people download this for free for hobby use. Even the yearly commercial subscription isn't very expensive.
My theory is that they are still developing it and it can be buggy and unstable at times. They want to get people hooked on it while they iron out the kinks then eventually will charge what it is worth.
 

Groundhog

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#65
My theory is that they are still developing it and it can be buggy and unstable at times. They want to get people hooked on it while they iron out the kinks then eventually will charge what it is worth.
I think you are probably right. I'm looking at going back to my old version of TurboCad and VisualMill.
 

DaveInMi

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#66
I use an old '95 version of AutoCad LT running windows xt on an old desk top in my shop that is dedicated to drafting. I'm old enough to think in 2D. 3D just confuses me. As you can tell, I don't worry much about updating. I bought it second hand from the A place for $30 a few years ago.
 

rzbill

The cheapest thing in an airplane is the pilot.
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#67
I use an old '95 version of AutoCad LT running windows xt
Dang, you beat me. :) LT '98 is my home CAD. Started using AutoCad when it was just AutoCad with no numbers or release years attached to the name.

By the way, be careful of the next Windows upgrade to anything. My LT '98 quit working when I went away from XP (even when I selected backwards capability options). Upgraded because IE was too far out of date to keep working on current internet. SO.....no AutoCad was not an option. Forced me to try Linux Mint. Things are fine now and Mr. Gates will never get another red cent from me.
 

JohnG

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#68
AutoCAD was my work software starting when they took the K&E drafting arm off my desk around 1990. When I bought my retirement machine with Windows 10 at the end of last year, I wasn't going to learn another. I bought an AutoCAD 2007 license off EBay. That was the last year they sold it outright rather than as a yearly license. I also bought software called a Longbow Convertor which to my way of thinking is some sort of pulley that does a 2 for 1 conversion of 32 bit software into a 64 bit operating system. I'm sure that is hopelessly naïve.
Anyhow, the convertor ran for almost an hour, and suddenly AutoCAD appeared on my screen. It has worked flawlessly right from the start. Total cost was under $300.00 for permanent AutoCAD. Before I retired, I did have to use my work machine to convert my newer personal drawings back to 2007 format.
I just use 2D CAD. The 3D is there, but I haven't tried it. The product design guys I worked with all went to SolidWorks when they went 3D. My work was code compliance, and all the P.E.s I worked with used 2D programs, so I stayed with that.
 

Blackjackjacques

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#69
AutoCAD was my work software starting when they took the K&E drafting arm off my desk around 1990. When I bought my retirement machine with Windows 10 at the end of last year, I wasn't going to learn another. I bought an AutoCAD 2007 license off EBay. That was the last year they sold it outright rather than as a yearly license. I also bought software called a Longbow Convertor which to my way of thinking is some sort of pulley that does a 2 for 1 conversion of 32 bit software into a 64 bit operating system. I'm sure that is hopelessly naïve.
Anyhow, the convertor ran for almost an hour, and suddenly AutoCAD appeared on my screen. It has worked flawlessly right from the start. Total cost was under $300.00 for permanent AutoCAD. Before I retired, I did have to use my work machine to convert my newer personal drawings back to 2007 format.
I just use 2D CAD. The 3D is there, but I haven't tried it. The product design guys I worked with all went to SolidWorks when they went 3D. My work was code compliance, and all the P.E.s I worked with used 2D programs, so I stayed with that.
ACAD LT is a decent option for about $380/year as a subscription, it has all the latest bells and whistles. Solidworks student edition is available for free with a membership with the Experimental Aircraft Association.
 

4gsr

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#71
I use Draftsight, but I really don't have enough experience to know if it's good or bad.
Draftsight is Darn good for 2D drawings. It's my main program I use along with SW's. I still prefer Draftsight over SW right now.
 

unclpepe

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#72
After Windows 98 quit providing service updates I replaced the operating system with Linux Mint. Linux Mint is FREE! Software is also free. Currently, I am learning freeCAD 0.16 which is the latest stable release. The program is 3D CAD and robust. YouTube and the freeCAD website (called a wiki) provide tutorials. After designing something, you can export the file as G-code. Another program, named Camotics has a CAD simulator.

I’m still a fledging learner, but I find it kind of fun.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
 

Alan H

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#73
I have a background in AutoCAD and mechanical drawing. I dropped AutoCAD years ago as the cost of the upgrades increased extensively. I would like to get back into it without facing a massive learning curve.

I am looking for a low-cost replacement that would have most of the AutoCAD features.
If you are going to renew your skills and you want low cost, I suggest you consider Fusion 360.

It is free to a hobbyist and is quickly becoming the defacto standard.

There are a huge number of YouTube videos out there that are extremely well done on almost all aspects of it. You can be self taught and accelerate your learning and output.
 

clif

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#74
Solidworks offers student edition free to veterans
Not exactly, to quote their website;

The SOLIDWORKS Student Edition cost to qualified US and Canadian Military including reserve, active duty and retired/discharged military personnel is $20 USD/$40 CAD.

For US, a copy of your DD214, DD256 or DD257 form is required.For Canada, a copy of your NDI 75 or CFOne Card replacing the NDI 75 (Effective Jan 1, 2016) or CAF 75 (Record of Service ID Card) is required.For Active Duty (US/Canada only), please provide a Statement of Service verified by your Chain of Command and include date of entry and end of service dates

Eligibility Information


The SOLIDWORKS® Student Edition is only available to US and Canadian Military including reserve, active duty and retired/discharged military personnel.
Proof of eligibility is required before you can complete your order.


https://store.solidworks.com/veteran/default.php

Granted the student edition is listed at $99.99 which means the veterans offer is a great discount (80% off), but technically not free.
 
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