Computers and CAD software geekery

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  • Computers and CAD software geekery
  • stonemonkey
    Member

    well google sketch up is becoming popular for the architects
    but autocad is probably the best for you but to get the free student version i think you need a uni email address but i might be wrong

    joemarshall
    Member

    If the parts aren’t complex, then http://www.emachineshop.com have some software that is sort of useful. It checks things fit with CNC machines too (assuming wherever you are getting things done uses the same machines).

    I think most CAD software doesn’t support Apple (the industry standard ones like Autocad, Solidworks etc. certainly don’t support it), but you can run the Windows software in a separate boot partition (or potentially using Parallels or similar to run the Windows software, although CAD tends to be a bit processor heavy).

    Joe

    joemarshall
    Member

    Bear in mind with a standard CAD program as opposed to the emachineshop stuff, you may need to know more about the machines that you’re working with, as some machines if you send a bad program, they can literally crash (in a physical, thousands of pounds damage kind of way). Although probably the CNC shop will handle this from your drawings, but the emachineshop stuff is nice in that it does notice things straight off.

    Joe

    Milkie
    Member

    AutoSketch is pretty good, basically a light version of AutoCAD. Pretty easy to use too.

    You won’t need an ultra fast machine, unless you are making very complicated things.

    Pierre
    Member

    interesting… I suspected that the industry standards might be more PC-based than Mac. I’m only slightly influence by the thought that an iMac will look much nicer on my desk than the PC clutter that’s currently there!

    : P

    Pierre
    Member

    Hi, please excuse the complete n00bishness of this post but was hoping for some pointers on where to start:

    1) My old PC is dying. I want to get a new one. I built my old one from components so I’m not an idiot with electronics and assembly. My wife has a MacBook and it’s very nice.

    2) I’ve got a couple of ideas for bike components I’d like to design and mock up. Nothing too fancy but I have never used CAD software before. Can anyone recommend a free or very cheap software package that I could use to design things and then send industry-standard files to CNC people to mock up prototypes from?

    …and are the above two points compatible without spending a lot of money on expensive specialist kit? I’d quite like to go down the Apple route if possible, yes I know it’s more expensive but everyone I know with an Apple has had a lot fewer problems than everyone I know with a PC.

    Cheers!

    : P

    Oggles
    Member

    go for the iMac 😛

    I have mine boot camped for the sole purpose of running pro engineer. (and hypershot)

    ooOOoo
    Member

    Alias is coming for your macs too

    coffeeking
    Member

    If you only want to sketch out in 2D what you’ve thought up in 3D then you can get a free copy of Solid Edge 2D.

    Not sure Apple is the way to go, not exactly engineering industry standard.

    Premier Icon takisawa2
    Subscriber

    If you want to design in 3d Autodesk Inventor is easy(ish) to use.

    flamejob
    Member

    We use Vectorworks which (in it’s 2009 incarnation) uses the Solid Edge 3D engine used in Pro Engineer, Solid Works etc.

    I am sure you could obtain a copy from somewhere.

    … or just use VM Ware (as stated above) to run a Windows app in OS X. I run it every now and then to check what our drawings look like from the other side of the fence

    mrmo
    Member

    i have heard somewhere that autocad may be appearing on the mac in the near future.

    Premier Icon theginjaninja
    Subscriber

    A Mac is a PC these days.

    Just run it in VM Ware Fusion or mock it up in Vectorworks.

    compositepro
    Member

    run parralels or bootcamp on the mac and instaal windoze …this gives you access to all kinds of pc engineering type software solidworks runs on it …tried and tested Unigraphics runs natively on a mac but you wll need very deep pockets if your serious…maybe at a later date

    ooOOoo
    Member

    I think it depends on what Pierre has in mind – a cube with a hole in it or a beautifully surfaced part with complex features….??

    Pierre
    Member

    Thanks for all the info everyone! Sorry, hadn’t checked this thread for a while…

    I was planning on playing with a couple of ideas for shifters and levers so I don’t think I was after anything “beautifully surfaced” or, in fact, any particularly fancy visualisations. I’d like to mock up a few components and see how they fit together, but I can always do that with actual models rather than on screen if necessary. (or, because I’m fairly used to the old school way of computing, I’ll play with wireframes!)

    I think an iMac is probably the way forward for everything else I need to do, and VMware or Parallels for the PC-dependent stuff.

    Thanks for the advice.

    : P

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