Benbox Laser Machines/CO2 Lasers/3D Printers

3D Printers => 3D Printer Software => Topic started by: ThothLoki on August 11, 2017, 04:07:28 PM

Title: Modeling Software
Post by: ThothLoki on August 11, 2017, 04:07:28 PM
So, starting out with 3D printing, I decided to use tinkercad as it was easy, free and could be used anywhere.

I am starting to get to the point of wanting something more robust. I want to keep it free for now though.

My question is this: What is everybody using for their 3D modeling software?
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: Lob0426 on August 11, 2017, 06:55:13 PM
I use Sketchup.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: Administrator on August 11, 2017, 07:35:54 PM
Sketchup.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: mrehmus on August 11, 2017, 07:39:15 PM
I use Alibre 3D CAD which does a superb job of turning out 2D DXFs as well. I use it to turn out engineering drawings of model engines for my magazine.

But it is not free. If I had to choose another program, it would be AutoDesk's Fusion 360 which is free and even has a good 3-Axis CAM module as well.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: Administrator on August 11, 2017, 07:57:21 PM
Holly cow I'll say it's not cheap: $1000.00 to 1600.00.

I used AutoDesk's Fusion 360 and here is my take on this one: It is free for folks like us but its over kill for what we do and it's a bit complex in my opinion. It is also a very massive program and you need a PC with some horse power to run it. To put it another way, I'd say using Fusion 360 is like using a jack hammer to crack open an egg  :)

So far, I see Sketchup as a leading 3D software solution.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: ThothLoki on August 11, 2017, 08:25:35 PM
I initially tried sketchup. I did not like it. I was probably not using it correctly though. How do you set something to exact lengths and locations?

I have been dabling in Fusion360 and it does seem like a beefed-up version of tinkercad.

The designs I usually make are parametric, so meshmixer and blender are out 9even though I have them). I have not dove into openscad yet because I have not had the time to learn the programming language side of it.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: Administrator on August 11, 2017, 08:48:57 PM
You can use the keyboard to set your size values. For example, to draw a rectangle, press the R key and then start it with the mouse, a small window will open at the bottom and you can just type in it's size such as 10,40 and press return.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: ThothLoki on August 11, 2017, 09:47:34 PM
well, I guess I will have to try it again! Thanks Ralph!
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: Poeli on August 12, 2017, 01:09:32 AM
I would give blender a try. It is a full 3D Software for modelling, sculpting, compositing, rendering and it is free.
Free does´nt mean, that it is a not professional software. Blender is used by indie 3D art companies as well as 3DMax, Maya, Cinema4D etc.

https://www.blender.org/
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: Zax on August 12, 2017, 04:54:57 AM
I use 123D Design and OpenSCAD, but do most of the designs in TurboCAD 3D.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: ThothLoki on August 13, 2017, 09:21:21 PM
Ok. So I am giving fusion a try this week then openscad and sketchup each a week after.

I have to see if I can get over my hurdle with sketchup. Also, I don't know if I am ready for another programming language quite yet.

I tried blender a while ago and should give it a go again. I don't know if that one is my style atm.

So far fusion seems similar to tinker as in some of the layout. Honestly, it feels like going from duplo to knex  ;)
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: nottingham82 on August 13, 2017, 09:46:26 PM
I grew up on 3d Studio Max and Autocad R14 so I tend to stay with the autodesk software because its more familiar.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: pedwards2932 on August 15, 2017, 05:33:05 PM
I just got my printer working and have loaded Cura which came with the printer but I have used Sketchup a lot.  My question is how do you get it from Sketchup to printer.  The files they gave me to test with are .stl but it seems there has to be more info in file to give the printer set up info?  I think you have to get a plug in for Sketch up to turn your drawing into an .stl?  Do you pull it into Cura afterwards to set all the printer parameters.  Sorry to be such a newb but I usually can pick it up pretty quick once I get started
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: ThothLoki on August 15, 2017, 06:13:22 PM
I just got my printer working and have loaded Cura which came with the printer but I have used Sketchup a lot.  My question is how do you get it from Sketchup to printer.  The files they gave me to test with are .stl but it seems there has to be more info in file to give the printer set up info?  I think you have to get a plug in for Sketch up to turn your drawing into an .stl?  Do you pull it into Cura afterwards to set all the printer parameters.  Sorry to be such a newb but I usually can pick it up pretty quick once I get started

Yes, you need to download and install a plugin for sketchup to export STL files
https://extensions.sketchup.com/en/content/sketchup-stl

After you have exported the STL file, you bring it into Cura. Yes, set your printer parameters and away you go.

Think of it like this. Sketchup, Fusion 360, Tinkercad etc is like Microsoft Word or Pages. Cura is the printer driver. When you go to print a document from Word or Pages (or LibreOffice for that matter) and hit the print button, a window pops up asking you how many copies, what paper size etc. That is what Cura does.

We are all newbs at one point. I am still pretty new to most things. Heck, one guy on this forum made a weird suggestion that you could possibly engrave on slate  ;) Who knew?
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: pedwards2932 on August 15, 2017, 06:17:48 PM
Thanks for the info, that is sorta like I had it figured.  Once you add the printer parameters then can you load the .stl to the memory card and print from the card like the samples?
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: ThothLoki on August 15, 2017, 06:42:59 PM
Yes. What printer did you get?

When I got my printer, it turned out my card reader didn't work. Monoprice offered to replace my printer but I said no thanks. I don't like using ad cards anyway. I hooked a raspberry Pi running astroprint on it so I can monitor my printer anywhere
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: pedwards2932 on August 15, 2017, 07:49:54 PM
I got an ANET A8 the card reader works......since these jobs can take while I didn't want to use my laptop if the card will work...I'll use that.  Rasberry pi sounds interesting though.  Thanks for the info.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: ThothLoki on August 15, 2017, 08:20:22 PM
I got an ANET A8 the card reader works......since these jobs can take while I didn't want to use my laptop if the card will work...I'll use that.  Rasberry pi sounds interesting though.  Thanks for the info.

I hear ya. That's why I went with the rpi

Take a look at octopi and Astro print. Both have weaknesses and strengths
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: effdub on August 28, 2017, 08:36:35 PM
Sketchup didn't make sense to me. Fusion360 is badass, but way too complicated for the simple stuff I need to do.

My favorite is TinkerCAD. It's very rudimentary, but also very easy to use for relatively simple but functional models.

OpenSCAD is also very awesome, but can take some time to understand. I find it most useful to start with an existing model's code and modify to my needs.
Title: Re: Modeling Software
Post by: ThothLoki on August 29, 2017, 05:05:40 AM
Sketchup didn't make sense to me. Fusion360 is badass, but way too complicated for the simple stuff I need to do.

My favorite is TinkerCAD. It's very rudimentary, but also very easy to use for relatively simple but functional models.

OpenSCAD is also very awesome, but can take some time to understand. I find it most useful to start with an existing model's code and modify to my needs.

I thought the same thing about Fusion and TinkerCAD. I am now using fusion360 a lot more for my new designs, but tend to use tinkercad when modifying or merging stl files downloaded from thingiverse