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Rod
02-13-2003, 07:50 PM
I'm interested in doing a little design work, possibly cues landscape interior and more. I know little but would like to learn. For you engineers etc out there, what is a decent program? I want to keep it on the inexpensive side. Can anyone offer suggestions? I see it being sold on ebay but I never know exactly what they are selling.
Opinions?

Here is the link,
http://search.ebay.com/search/search.dll?cgiurl=http%3A%2F%2Fcgi.ebay.com%2Fws%2 F&krd=1&from=R8&MfcISAPICommand=GetResult&ht=1&Sor tProperty=MetaEndSort&query=CAD+software

Thanks --- Rod

dddd
02-14-2003, 02:03 AM
the cost directly affects the ease at which you can create geometery and label parts.
then it may depend if you prefer to use a digitizing board, or use the commands on the screens. i will look around and see what i can come up with be in touch

dennis

Wally_in_Cincy
02-14-2003, 08:30 AM
I've been using AutoCAD for 10 years. It's become the industry standard pretty much. It's a steal at $4500 /ccboard/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

If you know anybody in the field you should be able to get the software and load it. Of course that would be illegal but what the heck.

Do you have any friends who are draftsmen or engineers?

Rod
02-14-2003, 12:18 PM
Nope Wally don't know anyone. My friends aren't that smart, remember their pool players! /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif I could go for one percent of that price though. /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

Rod
02-14-2003, 12:23 PM
Thanks Dennis,
I have a couple of freebies now that I am trying to learn. It's going to take a while I fear. This stuff isn't easy, I admire anyone proficient using it.

heater451
02-14-2003, 02:29 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Rod:</font><hr> I'm interested in doing a little design work, possibly cues landscape interior and more. . . .<hr /></blockquote>CAD isn't my forté ('yet' that is, I'm learning Microstation right now, and I've got a copy of AutoCAD 2000, and an eval copy of Solidworks http://www.solidworks.com/ . . .), but I know some of what's out there.

I've also got Punch!Software, Super Home Suite ( http://www.punchsoftware.com/index.htm ). It's good for basic floorplans, but I don't really think it's worth the $80. It does have some decent texturing, and a 'built-in' 3D app for making simple furniture (of course, the more time you spend with it, the more complicated you can get), but it's almost too simple. Punch! has a separate "Landscape" offering as well.

There are some 2D/3D packages out there, and you will probably be better off with some sort of 3D (solids) setup, for doing cues--to get the conical sections right. Note: "2D" may just mean that you work mostly in flat views (orthographic), but can render an isometric view, as opposed to working with 3D solids to build.

Let see. . . .I **think** that AutoCAD (Autodesk.com) puts out a basic, inexpensive retail package, but I'm not sure. In any case, they have a trial for A-CAD2002 ( http://usa.autodesk.com/adsk/index/0,,842175-123112,00.html ).

As I said, my school uses Bentley's Microstation, but I don't know what it costs--and I don't find their site all that informative or helpful (lot of words, little content): http://www.bentley.com

There is also TurboCAD ( http://www.turbocad.com/index2.cfm ), but their retail packaging is confusing--which is computer industry standard, actually. . . .They have a 2D/3D "Designer" box, which is the econo pack. Then there is a "TurboCAD v8" box, which has pretty much the same info on it. Also, to add confusion, those two are distributed by another company, while 'Turbocad' (the company?) sells TurboCAD v8 "Standard" and "Pro". The "Designer" box is $39, the first "v8" mentioned is $79, and the "Pro" version is $499.

Then, there is a few different app packages from Upperspace ( http://www.upperspace.com/ ). Again, the range is from $30, to $500--check their "other products".

I like the look of the TurboCAD stuff in the store, but the packaging pisses me off. The DesignCAD stuff looks even better, but I'm willing to bet it's a little more complicated--but it may be worth the learning curve. (From what I've seen so far, CAD company's could learn something in GUI design from Adobe and Macromedia. . . .).

You can do a lot of stuff in a straight-forward CAD app (like Microstation or AutoCAD), but having a specialized one for landscaping and building/home interiors might save some time. For example, the Punch!Software stuff is fairly intuitive for non-software-geeks, but it's focus is very narrow. OTOH, going with the full CAD packages will probably require an added "How to" book purchase, a class in how to use it, or someone like Wally, whose brain you can pick.

As I said, the stuff's not my area (yet), but I'm working on it. . . . /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

BTW, I just noticed that you mentioned some "freebies" that you have--what did you get? (PM me, if you want.)


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Rod
02-14-2003, 03:51 PM
Thanks Heater,
I'll save your post for reference. I know so little that it is hard to even know what I want. I wish I had started 6 years ago with my first pc. I do find it very interesting which is why I'd like to learn. The full blown pro Cad software I'd have to take classes to comprehend.

Most web sites offer little in documentation. I guess they assume you have some idea of what your doing and need.
I got a basic one Cad Std a 2D program. I have Pro Desktop Express and just sent for the registration key. It should come any time.

I found these at, http://www.freebyte.com/cad/cad.htm there are many more. Smart Draw is another just for the experience. Qcad is another and seems like a good program from the reviews I read. The problem is it locks up my system. http://www.qcad.org/index.php3

I have a lot to work with now so I'd better keep reading and learning before I spend any serious money on a program.

Rod

SpiderMan
02-14-2003, 05:06 PM
Rod,

For the end-all in flexibility, of course there's AutoCAD. I've used it to do everything from drawing wiring diagrams and schematics, to designing my reloading bench, to creating photomask layouts for gallium arsenide microwave integrated circuits.

If you were being more specialized, such as home architecture, then there are specialized programs that not only provide a means to do the design but print out an optimized list of materials when you're done. And furnish a 3-D illustration of the finished product, with landscaping /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

You can probably pick up versions of AutoCAD that are a few releases old at used-software stores for reasonable prices. Anything you create in an older version will be forward-compatible to the new releases. There's also a version called "AutoCAD LT" that is a "lite" version missing a few of the more esoteric features but at a greatly reduced price.

Better yet, take a cheap course in AutoCAD at your local community college, then you can buy the software as a student (for non-commercial use) at a fraction of what the rest of the world pays.

SpiderMan

Wally_in_Cincy
02-15-2003, 01:17 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote SpiderMan:</font><hr> Rod,

For the end-all in flexibility, of course there's AutoCAD. I've used it to do everything from drawing wiring diagrams and schematics, to designing my reloading bench, to creating photomask layouts for gallium arsenide microwave integrated circuits.

If you were being more specialized, such as home architecture, then there are specialized programs that not only provide a means to do the design but print out an optimized list of materials when you're done. And furnish a 3-D illustration of the finished product, with landscaping /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

You can probably pick up versions of AutoCAD that are a few releases old at used-software stores for reasonable prices.

<font color="blue">Never thought of that. Good idea. Then maybe find a used copy of the book "Inside AutoCAD" to match that version. I have one for Release 11. </font color>

Anything you create in an older version will be forward-compatible to the new releases. There's also a version called "AutoCAD LT" that is a "lite" version missing a few of the more esoteric features but at a greatly reduced price.

<font color="blue">About $600 IIRC. And it does anything Rod would need, including 3D. However I don't think you can figure the weight and balance point of 3D model of an assembled jet engine with that. /ccboard/images/graemlins/laugh.gif </font color>

Better yet, take a cheap course in AutoCAD at your local community college, then you can buy the software as a student (for non-commercial use) at a fraction of what the rest of the world pays.

<font color="blue">My friend and I did that, splitting the cost. $350 total. I recouped my $175 twentyfold that winter working at home on the side. Man I need to find another gig like that LOL. I'd have to give up a lot of pool time though. And get a decent computer. </font color>
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