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Clemens M.
(@clemens-m)
Noble Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

One of the biggest challenges for me was to find the correct workflows through the different workbenches. I can recommend the video tutorials of MangoJelly

Secoundt challenge is the so called topological naming problem - the effects are described on post in front of mine by Thejiral

For me: I found my tool.

Best regards, Clemens

Mini, i3 MK2.5S, i3 MK4, CClone (Eigenbau)

Posted : 25/10/2023 10:49 am
nhand42 liked
Robin_13
(@robin_13)
Reputable Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

In FreeCAD, the issue (Topological naming problem ) is being worked on.  The issue is that when you make certain changes, the mapping goes all to hell and you have to remap the items to the correct faces or where they are attached.

If you go into the sketch or item and select the Data > Map Mode, you can select the correct face to attach the sketch or item to.  I was working on a vary large project and as things changed, this was a common issue as changes were requested.  Once I learned this, I extended the time of the growth of my bald spot by not pulling out my hair.  🙂

There is a FreeCAD fork that is supposed to have this fixed and is supposed to be fixed in the near future in FreeCAD. 

Posted : 30/10/2023 12:38 am
Acht and nhand42 liked
Thejiral
(@thejiral)
Noble Member
RE:

Thanks everyone for explaining the issue and actually also telling me that it has a name 😉
Now, it also makes much more sense to me. I am torn if I should try out that fork or rather wait for FreeCAD itself getthing a hold of it. Maybe I have a look into Data>Map Mode first but I think this is still rather bothersome and only a partial solution. 

There is another issue which I think is not related to topological naming but rather that distances change directions if you move other parts too much or in the wrong way. This can completely mess up your sketches beyond easy repair if you change some underlying dimensions. These may also be non-reversible, even if you press undo the messed up situation will persist. What I mean is you make a restraint that something is 20 mm right of a point. If that point moves the wrong way this restraint might change to 20 mm left of that point. Is that just how parametric designs work, that there is no directionality or is it FreeCad? Or is there an option I missed out?

This post was modified 4 months ago by Thejiral

Mk3s MMU2s, Voron 0.1, Voron 2.4

Posted : 30/10/2023 7:45 am
Acht liked
Michael Phillips
(@michael-phillips)
Active Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I loved the concept of OpenSCAD

If you like to program to make your models, CadQuery might be worth a look. It is a Python library so you have a widely used language to work with. It doesn't have a GUI but you can use your favorite IDE or text editor. Then you just need a viewer that will reload the model when the file changes. On Windows I just use File Explorer preview. It will show previews of STL files if Microsoft's 3D Viewer is the default app for STL files.

My machines: Prusa i3MK3S+ with MMU3 and Sienci LongMill 30x30 CNC router/laser

Posted : 30/10/2023 12:38 pm
HappyKatz liked
Robin_13
(@robin_13)
Reputable Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I do understand your issues.

I am using Version 21.1 now and have less issue than with 20.  I make sure that you have upgraded.

I find that when making major changes to sketches, do them slowly if you are dragging them.  May have to work with each section of the sketch as needed.

 

 

Posted : 30/10/2023 8:28 pm
Michael Phillips
(@michael-phillips)
Active Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I made a mistake when I said that there isn't a GUI. They have CQ-editor. I had tried to install it in the past but it always failed, I was trying to install into an existing virtual environment then. I decided to give CadQuery another try, been using OpenSCAD, and I was successful installing CQ-editor using a pre-built installer. It installs CQ-editor in a folder with it's own conda Python installation and it worked.

https://github.com/CadQuery/CQ-editor/releases/tag/nightly

My machines: Prusa i3MK3S+ with MMU3 and Sienci LongMill 30x30 CNC router/laser

Posted : 31/10/2023 11:34 am
Frio
 Frio
(@frio)
Estimable Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

You could give Solid Edge Community Edition a go.  It is free for hobbyist purposes with no serious limitations and is not cloud connected, although you do need to create a Siemens account to download it.

Personally I'm not a huge fan of the interface but probably still worth a try.  It is quite capable.

Posted : 31/10/2023 7:17 pm
vhubbard
(@vhubbard)
Estimable Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I use the Solid Edge community edition.   Works well for me.  Free for makers.  Not free for business use.   It has a yearly release/update.   The key is this is well supported by professional development.    It takes time to learn as all the CAD systems do.    It has 3D printing support features also.  Even functional threads.   Saves to .step, .stl and many others. 

CAD/CAM was my profession for 40 years. In my oprinion, start with a high end system, you will grow into it soon.  

Posted by: @frio

You could give Solid Edge Community Edition a go.  It is free for hobbyist purposes with no serious limitations and is not cloud connected, although you do need to create a Siemens account to download it.

Personally I'm not a huge fan of the interface but probably still worth a try.  It is quite capable.

 

Posted : 16/11/2023 4:41 pm
ssill2
(@ssill2)
Noble Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I find I tend to use Blender and OpenSCAD.   Since I used to use blender to do animation, it was sort of comfortable for me to design parts in it.   It has become more friendly to 3d printing needs too.  Of course it's not going to be as good as a CAD/CAM tool that is meant fore creating parts for manufacture, but it has the advantage that if you design non mechanical parts that like characters etc it has a ton of tools for that too.   I do like OpenSCAD for parametric things, and I want to learn to use it more.

Posted : 16/11/2023 5:29 pm
Acht liked
Robin_13
(@robin_13)
Reputable Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I have not done it myself but a friend of mine has recommended using FreeCAD to do some of his drawings and Blender to do some of the more complicated curves.  I do know he designs stuff for his plane in FreeCAD and Blender as well as online flight simulator.

With FreeCAD, it is learning the correct work benches and work flow to ensure things work. 

 

Posted : 16/11/2023 6:29 pm
ssill2
(@ssill2)
Noble Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I tried freecad before, I found it to be a bit buggy.   I only tend towards Blender because I'm familiar with it from my animation days.   I think many folks use a combination of tools.  I know this was the case when I was doing animation.  Blender is pretty amazing for being completely free.   The problem I find is that documentation out there often lags behind the current release.

Posted : 16/11/2023 6:33 pm
Netpackrat
(@netpackrat)
Reputable Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

 

Posted by: @netpackrat

I have been using this software for about a year and a half and I have been reasonably happy with it.

Posted by: @zab

I have been using Alibre Atom3D  for a number of years now.  It's low cost to purchase (currently $149) and once you own it, you own it.  Resides on your PC so you don't need to be online to use.  Uses sketches similar to Fusion to create objects for 3d printing.  Doesn't do everything that Fusion does, but for my purposes it has worked very well.  They have 'professional' versions but they cost considerably more.  With Atom they usually put out updates once or twice a year but an annual update license is only $50.  If you don't want to buy the lifetime license they also now have the option to pay a monthly fee which includes any updates while your license is still valid.  In either case, all the files stay on your computer and not on the cloud.

 

FWIW, I cannot recommend this software anymore, for reasons having nothing to do with the software itself, but rather the company that makes it.  I work a late shift, and don't get home until the wee hours of the morning.  This morning, some a-hole salesman from Alibre called my phone as I was trying to sleep, to tell me about whatever upgrade deal they are currently offering.  This was the second time this has happened since I purchased the software last year.  I have never purchased any other software where the company has felt the need to harass me by phone to purchase upgrades.  The entire $%*&^&* point of the Alibre software was that you buy it and there is no ongoing BS, subscription, etc. 

Posted : 16/11/2023 10:59 pm
Acht
 Acht
(@acht)
Trusted Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

While freecad still is pretty buggy, if you know your way around it is actually quite usable. So far I always was able to realize my projects with it, but I admit it is way harder to learn currently, since there are a lot of kinks that have to be ironed out.

Posted : 16/11/2023 11:37 pm
Clemens M.
(@clemens-m)
Noble Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

Since using FreeCAD 0.21.1 I have to say that this is a great step forward. It makes more and more fun to use.

Best regards, Clemens

Mini, i3 MK2.5S, i3 MK4, CClone (Eigenbau)

Posted : 17/11/2023 12:30 pm
karl-herbert
(@karl-herbert)
Illustrious Member
RE:

@Clemens:

Wie sagt man so schön: einem geschenkten Gaul schaut man nicht ins Maul 👍 

Wenn man sich etwas in die Materie hineinlebt, kommt man mit FreeCad ziemlich gut zurecht.

Schöne Grüsse,

Karl

Statt zu klagen, dass wir nicht alles haben, was wir wollen, sollten wir lieber dankbar sein, dass wir nicht alles bekommen, was wir verdienen.

Posted : 17/11/2023 1:41 pm
Davebert
(@davebert)
Trusted Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I like DesignSpark Mechanical. I have used Fusion 360 but it's too expensive if you want all the features. I tried FreeCAD but it has a greater learning curve and some bugs. DesignSpark mechanical has a FREE version and two paid versions but the Engineer level offers PCB making too. The Creator package is only $11.99 a month or $136 per year. In fact it is the first and ONLY subscription I have ever purchased.

https://www.rs-online.com/designspark/mechanical-software

Posted : 18/11/2023 4:01 pm
Robin_13
(@robin_13)
Reputable Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I looked at Design Mechanical and seeing the limitations on the free version was a zero for me.  I cannot afford the monthly or annual payment for something that isn't making me money and I have made money using FreeCAD.

For PCB's I use pcb-rnd and looking at KiCAD.

I find that FreeCAD 21.1 is pretty stable compared to what 20 was.  There is also RealThunder which fixes some of the FreeCAD issues but has other issues.

For simple projects, FreeCAD is quick to learn.  More complicated, yes, it is much harder.  But I found it easier to learn than AutoCAD and many of the procedures are similar to Inventor which many at work use.  I know that we spent lots of money to send people on AutoCAD and Inventor courses so they are not easy either but much more expensive.  Much of the problems with FreeCAD is knowing what limitations are with what workbenches due to different developers.

 

 

 

Posted : 18/11/2023 7:42 pm
Acht liked
Davebert
(@davebert)
Trusted Member
RE: Alternatives to Fusion360

I don't have extra money but DesignSpark is something I used from V4 (when it was FREE) on so I am used to it and I like it. It is the *only* software in my life I have ever subscribed to as I hate subscriptions. I will look at the latest version of FreeCAD as I was very interested in it years ago and also had the RealThunder versions on my pc. I have too many PCB software apps to count so I am good there. 🙂

Posted by: @robin_13

I looked at Design Mechanical and seeing the limitations on the free version was a zero for me.  I cannot afford the monthly or annual payment for something that isn't making me money and I have made money using FreeCAD.

For PCB's I use pcb-rnd and looking at KiCAD.

I find that FreeCAD 21.1 is pretty stable compared to what 20 was.  There is also RealThunder which fixes some of the FreeCAD issues but has other issues.

For simple projects, FreeCAD is quick to learn.  More complicated, yes, it is much harder.  But I found it easier to learn than AutoCAD and many of the procedures are similar to Inventor which many at work use.  I know that we spent lots of money to send people on AutoCAD and Inventor courses so they are not easy either but much more expensive.  Much of the problems with FreeCAD is knowing what limitations are with what workbenches due to different developers.

 

 

 

 

Posted : 19/11/2023 1:00 am
Ruby Woo
(@ruby-woo)
Member
RE:

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______________________

This post was modified 3 months ago 2 times by Ruby Woo
Posted : 01/12/2023 8:38 am
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