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Max The Magnificent
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Re: RepRap forum stuff
Max The Magnificent   8/16/2013 10:38:26 AM
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@Randa11: http://reprap.org/wiki/Useful_Software_Packages

Wow -- very useful -- also I now know what RepRap stands for :-)

Max The Magnificent
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Re: Even cheaper?
Max The Magnificent   8/16/2013 10:34:48 AM
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@ost0: The Buccaneer 3d printer from these guys (Pirate3d  Inc...

This does look tasty -- I like the iPad / WiFi interface -- but I've already ordered my Solidoodle so I'm focused on that now :-)

Max The Magnificent
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Re: Sketchup with 3rd party free .stl exporter easiest learning curve
Max The Magnificent   8/16/2013 10:29:33 AM
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@Davy.Baker: I dabble with them all at work, but at home I prefer Sketchup with the third party .stl exporter added in.

Thanks for the great advice -- I must admit that I'm leaning toward SketchUp based on other things I've heard -- is there a website for the .STL exporter or do you get that from the SketchUp site also?

Max The Magnificent
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Re: 3D MCAD
Max The Magnificent   8/16/2013 10:26:50 AM
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@Aeroengineer: At that point you might then start looking for a secondary package to back up the first one.

Oh joy! :-)  All I want is a simple life ... initially I need a package that will allow me to capture things like gears (not just round ones -- ones with unusual shapes) ... maybe later I will move to a package that supports more "organic" shapes.

The trick is to find something cheap (free) that is easy to learn, reasonably sophisticated, and can drive my 3D printer (I still smile when I say/type "my 3D printer")

Max The Magnificent
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Re: FreeCAD (From Germany) is also not too bad
Max The Magnificent   8/16/2013 10:22:59 AM
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@wmwmurray01: The AutoCAD 123D online will allow one to have parts made, and shipped to you (Both Metal via CNC, and 3D Printer - Resin)


Can you use the AutoCAD 123D with your own 3D printer?

Randa11
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RepRap forum stuff
Randa11   8/16/2013 4:59:18 AM
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http://reprap.org/wiki/Useful_Software_Packages

ost0
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Even cheaper?
ost0   8/16/2013 3:37:55 AM
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The Buccaneer 3d printer from these guys (Pirate3d  Inc) claims to have an even lower pricetag of $347. They seem to have rised quite a bit of money from Kickstarter.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/pirate3d/the-buccaneer-the-3d-printer-that-everyone-can-use

Im not sure how realistic this is, but I kinda like the pirate style. Note their store is called Treasure Island :) Being an old Monkey Island (the old game) fan helps.

 

Davy.Baker
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Sketchup with 3rd party free .stl exporter easiest learning curve
Davy.Baker   8/16/2013 12:18:06 AM
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I dabble with them all at work, but at home I prefer Sketchup with the third party .stl exporter added in.   Sketchup can NOT import .stl files though (or at least well ?) - for that I use NetFabb to slice, and/or rotate and/or scale donated .stl designs.   This is more art than engineering though using Sketchup and NetFabb (compared with Solidworks (3D), Autocad (2D) and Inventor(3D)).   Makerware (from Makerbot) is a great way to import multiple .stl's, and independently scale, rotate or move each, then export back out as a single .stl (or two different files if doing dualstrusion).   This free package also  exports to their proprietary editable format (.thing) and machine code .x3g (gcode choice no longer works), but don't let that stop you from trying it out ! (since it also saves out graphicly tweaked .stl's as another .stl)   Best, Davy

Aeroengineer
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Re: 3D MCAD
Aeroengineer   8/15/2013 7:42:12 PM
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One of the things that a lot of people do not know is that most mid level and above MCAD packages offer scripting.  I know that both SolidWorks and CATIA offer VB scripting.  I also know that both can be made extensible with custom programed interfaces that use their API's.

 

The reason most people do not do this is that for most shapes, it is much easier to use hot keys and a mouse.  The other reason is that most mechanical parts will change in their lifetime.  The GUI allows for fast modification of these parts. 



This becomes readily apparent when you start to work with complex curvature.  Most of these shapes are defined by higher order math, and it would be a nightmare to try and program that into a script.  Even the programs do not always get it correct.  I was helping a friend last night attempt to fix the leading edge of a wing model done in a MCAD program.  Despite the inputs being correct, that particular MCAD package could not handle that shape. 

 

Hence many companies will have two or three cad packages to be able to take care of issues like this.  Each place that I have worked at has run no less than three MCAD packages.  This is excluding modelers that are used for finite element programs. 

 

As has been said below, each MCAD package will have its strengths and weaknesses.  It is best to try a few and see which feels right.  It will take a while to learn its limitations.  At that point you might then start looking for a secondary package to back up the first one. 

wmwmurray01
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FreeCAD (From Germany) is also not too bad
wmwmurray01   8/15/2013 5:32:54 PM
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FreeCAD (From Germany) is also not too bad -- I have a friend from college that has done some really impressive stuff with Blender.   The AutoCAD 123D online will allow one to have parts made, and shipped to you (Both Metal via CNC, and 3D Printer - Resin)

 

 

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