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Forum topic by Gpaw posted 02-16-2011 05:16 AM 3735 views 0 times favorited 25 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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65 posts in 2688 days

02-16-2011 05:16 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question

can you help with a wood working cad program

25 replies so far

View bigpops0259's profile


302 posts in 4150 days

#1 posted 02-16-2011 05:36 AM

Sketckup7 seems to be poplar with most of the guys here free downloads on line on google

-- Marty Ohio

View auggy53's profile


159 posts in 2680 days

#2 posted 02-16-2011 05:54 AM

i use homeplan pro , ive had it for years . its free for 30 days and 39.00 after that if you keep it. buy it online

-- rick

View steliart's profile


2595 posts in 2689 days

#3 posted 02-16-2011 11:32 AM

I’m using SketchUp 7pro with few extra plugins

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions

View RandyMorter's profile


228 posts in 2691 days

#4 posted 02-16-2011 06:50 PM

I’m using Sketchup (somewhat successfully) which is free from Google. I got Via CAD 2D from Staples a couple of months ago and found it more convoluted than Sketchup so I don’t use it at all now. I don’t find any of them very intuitive or easy to use (I’m a software devloper by day and I tried a number of different apps demo versions, although I don’t claim to be an expert on them).

Since Sketchup is so popular with other wood workers I’m trying to use it the best I can.

-- Randy Morter, Phoenix, AZ

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Lucas Peters

6 posts in 2993 days

#5 posted 02-16-2011 08:52 PM

Another vote for Sketchup.
I used a high-end model/animation software package in a previous life and Sketchup is far less technical and more intuitive. The main hangup I’ve had with Sketchup is that I’ve not been able to find a very satisfactory way to print out quick parts/cutlists.

-- Lucas Peters @ WOOD Magazine

View rogerw's profile


262 posts in 2690 days

#6 posted 02-17-2011 03:55 PM

i use the real thing – autocad. don’t know what i would do without it.

-- >> my shop teacher used to say "do the best at everything you make for your mom because you're going to see it for the rest of your life!" <<

View Les 's profile


201 posts in 2691 days

#7 posted 02-19-2011 01:08 AM

I agree, autocad is the way to go!!!

-- Stay busy....Stay young

View cabs4less's profile


235 posts in 2763 days

#8 posted 02-19-2011 01:37 AM

sketchup is a good one but if you want to go 2-d A+ Cad also called cad academy is just like autocad but half the price. I’m a draftsman and I have used a lot of programs and depending on wat I’m drawing will decide wat program I use If I want to draw furniture I would use sketch-ups If cabinets then A+cad If mechanical solid works ect. but I get all these programs free so I can do that but if i just had to have one then A+cad would be it because you can draw anything with it wit enough practice.
P.S. Versa cad is pretty reaswonable to and its a little like autocad and A+ but its more keyboard than mouse oriented

-- As Best I Can

View Unionwood's profile


7 posts in 2655 days

#9 posted 02-19-2011 01:58 AM

Sketchup has great videos as well to help you Along. It’s easy and quick to get the basics down!

-- Support your local

View Steven H's profile

Steven H

1117 posts in 3060 days

#10 posted 02-19-2011 02:25 AM

Go take a class

View Tony Strupulis's profile

Tony Strupulis

260 posts in 3124 days

#11 posted 02-19-2011 02:27 AM

If you want “traditional” cad, check out TurboCAD. It’s got 90% of the functionality of AutoCAD but sells for less than $200. Allegedly, it is compatible with AutoCAD. I’ve had limited success going back and forth. It is sorta like a combination of AutoCAD and MicroStation.

-- Tony -

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 3069 days

#12 posted 02-19-2011 02:46 AM

Sketchup seems to be the CAD program du jour for most. I’ve fooled with it a bit, but prefer TurboCad. You probably want to stay away from the full-on 3D CAD programs unless you’re willing to spend time on the learning curve. Once you get fairly proficient, however, it’s a great tool. I just spent about three hours making a drawing for a bathroom vanity for a customer, and I have every cut figured out for every board. The actual construction will be almost anticlimactic. – lol

CAD drawing is MUCH different than using paper, pencils, triangles and T-Squares. When I’ve taught folks to use CAD it was usually a long, difficult, road from “Here’s how you draw a straight line.?

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View brtech's profile


1029 posts in 2923 days

#13 posted 02-19-2011 09:22 PM

Designers who learned on 2D CAD systems tend to like the Autocad model, and have trouble dealing with Sketchup. Sketchup has a totally different model for how you get where you want to go, and if you know any other 2D, or even 3D CAD program, making the leap to Sketchup is pretty tough.

On the other hand, most 2D CAD programs work the same, so when you learn one, it’s fairly easy to move over to another one.

If you don’t know any CAD program, then you need to decide if you want to model a complete 3D shape, or draw a 2D plan. Even 3D autocad is really not a whole lot more than pushing together 2D drawings. More traditional 3D modeling programs like Solidworks are different yet, although it’s not so hard to go from a 2D autocad to Solidworks. It’s a lot easier than going to Sketchup.

Sketchup is really an amazing program, and the basic version is free. Hard to beat free. There are a lot of woodworking specific tutorials around, and some plug ins for making cut lists, and typical joinery models (M &T, dovetails, ...). It has a learning curve, and that curve is bigger than a basic 2D drawing program.

I personally think SU is great, and unless you are a mechanical engineer with a company who will pay for a full solidworks seat, SU is the way to go.

View Todd Peak Woodwork's profile

Todd Peak Woodwork

8 posts in 2323 days

#14 posted 01-20-2012 07:34 PM

Our good friend Matthias hooked us up proper here:

-- Todd, Maineville, OH,

View helluvawreck's profile


31105 posts in 2867 days

#15 posted 01-20-2012 09:18 PM

I can’t afford Autocad although I would love to have it. I use Turbocad Deluxe and it costs only $130.00. We use it in our in plant machine shop, we use it to design our molding profiles, and we use it to make the dxf files needed for the computerized router that makes our templates that we use to make our molder knives. It may not be as good as Autocad but at $130 it’s hard to beat. It does everything that I need it too and proces very good drawings.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

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