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Author Topic: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie  (Read 37488 times)

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Offline RICH

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Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #10 on: May 16, 2009, 03:58:22 PM »
JAY,
I don't think there is a single low priced program on the market that does it all.
What CNC you do today may change in the future. None of them are perfect, some are better than others.
You can spend a lot to time trying software and not having fun. So maybe just use a free CAD and software program, learn from that experience, and then you will be able to say something is right for you and be able to evaluate shortcomings when you test a program.

So as the car salesman analogy goes " for every seat there is an ask but he won't know he dosn't like the car until he drives it for a while".

RICH

Offline Greolt

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Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2009, 03:46:41 AM »
I have both Sheetcam and Cut2d

My recommendation between the two would be Cut2D.  Very easy to use intuitive interface. Just as good on a milling machine as a router.

Sheetcam has some extras if you are using a plasma  cutter.  But apart from that Cut2D wins hands down IMHO.

Nothing wrong with Sheetcam, good program, but since having the Vectric product I have never used Sheetcam since.  I use a mill, a router and an engraver.

Greg
Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2009, 09:12:59 AM »
Thanks Greg, I have been using both programs trial versions, knowing that they are both limited by being a trial, the cut2d seems to be much eaise and simpler to use and grasp.  Not that Sheetcam is over my head but I do seem to like the Cut2D a bit better.  I will make a decision here in a day or so and get something.   Jay
Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #13 on: May 18, 2009, 06:00:18 PM »
Hi.
I've been using ViaCAD 2D/3D and CamBam together for the last year or so and it's a marriage made in heaven, as far as I'm concerned. ViaCAD is $99 and CamBam is $149, so they're well within your price range, and I think wonderful value for money. ViaCAD does excellent DXF and STL file exports (amongst many others) to CamBam and can switch instantly to a 2D only mode, which is absolutely ideal for drawing the profiles you're going to need for most of your cnc work. Both of these programs are very powerful and both have strong 3D capabilities. The combination has, more or less, caused me to stop using Dolphin Partmaster - which is itself a good piece of software, but probably outside your price bracket.

Cheers.
Martin.
Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2009, 11:25:58 PM »
Thanks Martin, I will look into both programs.  I have to say I am happy this forum is here, you folks are a big help and as I get more and more into all this i'm going to need ya all.  thanks  jay
Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #15 on: May 20, 2009, 11:57:00 PM »
If you have an engineer student friend, you can get the educational version of SolidWorks for $200 USD.  Normally sells for $4-5k.  Fantastic 3D CAD program.

Offline Chris.Botha

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Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #16 on: May 21, 2009, 12:25:28 AM »
rhino is also available at about 200 or so for student versions.. one of the best nurbs programs I have ever worked with.

packs a lot of punch for a small pricetag.. most my jewellery is designed in it.  rhinocam would close the deal if you were up for the extra 2K price...
Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #17 on: May 21, 2009, 08:06:52 AM »
I had heard of both rhinocam and Solidworks and had looked them up its when I seen the prices and then the vast number of other programs like them I asked for help from you all.  Don't have any engineer friends.  Thanks for the input.  At the moment I need to wait on it.  Laid off from work at the moment, don't want to spend anything.  I do have a bit more time to spend in the garage though.   Thanks   Jay

vmax549

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Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #18 on: May 26, 2009, 01:17:50 AM »
HIYA JAY IF you have time on your hands and no money there ARE free programs out there to learn on. Maybe not the best but free is free when you really need it.

(;-) TP

Offline bowber

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Re: Which CAD/CAM software for newbie
« Reply #19 on: May 26, 2009, 06:07:09 AM »
Hi Jay

Not a good time for a relativly expensive hobby then.

I'm self employed so I have to watch what I spend all the time and there are usable alternatives that are free but they do take some getting used to and also you'll need to learn about editing Gcode by hand as most of them don't do everything for you.

It's a good idea to get used to editing Gcode anyway so have a search on the internet for simple tutorials on Gcode.

Steve