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Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby scaleautofactory » Tue Oct 08, 2019 2:55 am

Sketchup,for web is basic - no way to use required plugins especially for 3d printing.
I recommend sketchup make 2017 - since sketchup 2018 no more free software only the web based app.
Then add the recommended plugins like jointpushpull for adding thickness, quadface tools and subd for smoother surfaces, stl.exporter...
For design work a standard grafic card is sufficient.

For sketchup web a mouse support is Required - it works more or less with IOS 13 and ipad - but the web app is not very useful for design work - just my experience.

If someone needs some more advice or help about sketchup - feel free to contact me via mail or PM.
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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby stubeck » Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:40 am

What 3D printers do people recommend as well? I tried to get into this a few months ago with Blender, but frankly didn't have the time to understand it fully...and even if I did figure it out, I can't justify the high costs of 3D printing for the testing phase of this.
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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby VR2 » Tue Oct 08, 2019 11:30 am

Stubeck, concerning a 3D printer recommendation, you may look into my thread (WIP) about building the Porsche RSR turbo in which I've posted my experience with the Anycubic Photon along with some printed parts a couple of minutes ago
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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby indycals » Wed Oct 09, 2019 2:16 am

stubeck wrote:What 3D printers do people recommend as well? I tried to get into this a few months ago with Blender, but frankly didn't have the time to understand it fully...and even if I did figure it out, I can't justify the high costs of 3D printing for the testing phase of this.

My recommendation: Don't get one - ESPECIALLY if you are just now trying to learn design. I know people are doing cool things with the Photon, but I also see a lot of failures, and it's time consuming. Shapeways has it's issues (moving the goal posts on pricing), but I just uploaded a file to Shapeways and Sculpteo and Sculpteo couldn't come anywhere near Shapeways price.

Blender was the first app I tried but that was 7 years ago now. My impression was that blender was better for animation than 'parts design' although I know it can be used for parts designed.

I tried sketchup and found it a much better platform to learn on. I finally settled on Rhino and I'm very happy with it.
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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby gp-models » Wed Oct 09, 2019 6:07 am

I have seen a couple of results from the anycubic photon on youtube which are realy impressing, the price of the printer is realy cheap in my view and worth every cent.
Like Michael i`ve seen a few bad results too, but these have been more design mistakes like less supports etc, not coming from the printer itself. About the time, i don`t know how fast other filament printers are, maybe faster caused by thickness of layers, but all we modelers need is a good printing quality and that`s what this printer can do with the resin and thin layers. The speed depends not on the amount of parts your printing in this case, it depends on the hight of the object, so you can arange the parts in a way that the printing table is full of objects and it needs the same time like doing only one piece.
Handling after design phase seems to be easy as you only transfer the datas, choose a few options and your ready for printing, still looking userfriendly.
Bigger problem as Michael said is the design process for which a lot of experience is needed, that`s why i fear it too like many others for sure, 3D design is not easy to learn and it takes a lot of time when your not confirm in such things, or even do it as job each and every day. I hope that these softwares are getting more easy and userfriendly in future, and that prices drop down a bit, not everyone can do an investment of a few thousand $ only for software when using it for hobby.
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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby bestbalsakits » Wed Oct 09, 2019 8:56 am

Any shape that is based on circle/rectangle/square or a combination of is pretty easy to design. It gets complicated when surfaces show carvature in all directions and needs to fit in beween.

Printers are being sold as plug&play, and although that might be more or less so when printer is new oob, printing your designs gets pretty complicated soon after. Printers are still very fragile & wear out fast. If you're unable to troubleshoot & fix yourself, it gets expensive. Resin is expensive, build plates & reservoirs are consumables, this means they wear out and need to be replaced every so many prints (failures or not).
If you start panicking when your PC needs an update, don't buy a printer. They all are computer based, and in need of updates regularly.
If you start panicking when a simple door of your house won't shut flat anymore, don't buy a printer. List of faults/errors/... are endlessly, and more than one of these needs you getting in to fix, unless you have endless deep pockets of money. If my printer needs to be returned to manufacturer, it costs Euro 850 to start with, so that does not include any parts.
If you don't have a room were you can spill some resin on the floor without the worry of how to clean, don't buy a printer.
If you don't have a room with enough ventilation possible (more for certain makes, less for others), don't buy a printer.
I'm sure there are other reason why not to buy a printer, but these are the first that come to mind.

On other hand... should you buy a printer, you'll learn to love it i guess...

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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby daniel » Wed Oct 09, 2019 10:26 am

Because of the great parts/infos from VR2 I just bought the Anycubi Photon from ebay for 280€ . I think it's a great price and I just can't wait to test it myself.
Luckily I cna answer all tips from Wim with a yes ;) I have a room, ventilation and best of all 3D skills....will kepp you updated if you care.
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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby BMW » Wed Oct 09, 2019 11:34 am

I can see that great things can be created in sketchup, but I stand by not recommending it :)
It's easy to get started with, but it is still in my mind cumbersome to work with.
I prefer to learn Blender..

On 3D printers, I have done considerable research on home 3D printers, and have decided to hold off buying one till I am very comfortable with the modeling. The reason is as bestbalsakits and gp-models state:
They are expensive to start of with - not only do you need to buy the printer, but also a UV lamp, resin, alcohol etc. On top of that, you need to work a bit with getting them setup right t print basics, and then there are the special cases for printing your own models, how to separate them, how to make the workable etc.

For now, the Anycubic Photon is the printer I am aiming for :)
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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby stubeck » Wed Oct 09, 2019 1:38 pm

VR2 wrote:Stubeck, concerning a 3D printer recommendation, you may look into my thread (WIP) about building the Porsche RSR turbo in which I've posted my experience with the Anycubic Photon along with some printed parts a couple of minutes ago


I'll take a look at that, as I say below, I'm still well away from getting anything.

indycals wrote:
stubeck wrote:What 3D printers do people recommend as well? I tried to get into this a few months ago with Blender, but frankly didn't have the time to understand it fully...and even if I did figure it out, I can't justify the high costs of 3D printing for the testing phase of this.

My recommendation: Don't get one - ESPECIALLY if you are just now trying to learn design. I know people are doing cool things with the Photon, but I also see a lot of failures, and it's time consuming. Shapeways has it's issues (moving the goal posts on pricing), but I just uploaded a file to Shapeways and Sculpteo and Sculpteo couldn't come anywhere near Shapeways price.

Blender was the first app I tried but that was 7 years ago now. My impression was that blender was better for animation than 'parts design' although I know it can be used for parts designed.

I tried sketchup and found it a much better platform to learn on. I finally settled on Rhino and I'm very happy with it.


I'll take a look at those software packages. The problem almost is chicken/egg here. I need to design parts first, but before that happens I need to know what it costs to build them, and then I just don't do anything because I still have a ton of cars to make and stopping to make a part is such a foreign concept I don't know where to start! For a hot second I had thought about making kits out of the cars from the Codemasters F1 games, but the print time is so high that even if I partnered with someone like you for the decals, I'd probably only be able to make a hundred or so models a year at my house for example...so it requires I use Shapeways before I hit mass...and frankly that isn't going to happen.
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Re: Looking for a good and easy 3D design software

Postby indycals » Thu Oct 10, 2019 8:32 pm

"I had thought about making kits out of the cars from the Codemasters F1 games" First of all - that'd be a big no-no in terms of doing something like that without permission.

Second - 3d files for video and 3d files for printing are two very different things.

Third - for mass production resin is the way to go. All the kits I came out with I used 3d masters and then had them cast in resin or white metal. MUCH cheaper than 3d printing.

Start simple, use Shapeways to get the feel of things. There's a lot to learn. Heck, I've been doing it for 7 years, I've got hundreds of parts and 4 full kits under my belt and I still consider myself 'advanced novice'. And then I look at the Photon (I follow a Photon group on facebook) and see all the things needed to learn there and even if it made financial sense, the time to learn all the ins and outs is just something I don't have.
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