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Where to begin?

How do I start 3D drawing.

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Swarf Maker10/06/2019 08:55:27
84 forum posts
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Yes, F360 files can be stored locally. A recent upgrade also means that you can export them to 11 other CAD file formats for use in other programmes.

You can also import quite a wide range of file formats as well. Both import and export translation require you to be connected to the internet and the computational power is then provided by 'the other end'.

I often use the simple QCAD Pro software to generate dxf files and then import them to F360 to start the creation of a 3D model. I also use TurboCAD 2016 Pro Platinum for some of the things that it does best, like gear and thread generation. Files are then transferred to F360 in either dwg or STEP format.

SillyOldDuffer10/06/2019 09:49:01
5127 forum posts
1073 photos

Posted by paul rayner on 09/06/2019 20:55:55:.


Also you say that drawings are saved in the cloud. which I didn't know, does this mean you cannot save it elsewhere eg usb stick?

Is it possible to load it onto a computer not connected to the internet?


Fusion 360 is essentially Cloud based. It can only be loaded via the Internet. However, because the 'Cloud' isn't reliable, for example if someone takes out your internet connection by crashing into a telegraph pole, Fusion has an off-line mode that allows the user to carry on working on their current project for up to 2 weeks.

This is a temporary arrangement with many restrictions. Users who don't like the Cloud can't download Fusion from the internet once, disconnect, and then use it locally. Working off-line removes some important functionality, full description here and is time limited.

I like Fusion very much, but it's a cloud product and using it requires regular connection to the internet. Designs produced by Fusion can be copied and exported at home, but the software could be discontinued or charged for at any time. How likely are AutoDesk to pull the plug? I think it unlikely, but they're a business with commercial pressure that we aren't party to.


SillyOldDuffer10/06/2019 11:55:32
5127 forum posts
1073 photos
Posted by Ivan Winters on 09/06/2019 19:18:58:


I started with FreeCad. I couldn't even get into the opening screen to try a 2D sketch (these are the base from which all 3D assemblies are created). Looked at a tutorial but it didn't explain how to start getting the basics done before using the fancy tools the tutorial was going on about. ...


Agree it's not easy! I described the magic incantations needed to get into FreeCAD 2D-sketch in this thread recently (5th June) Easy enough when you know how and not necessary to sacrifice a virgin...

One problem with FreeCAD (and other software) is that web advice can be out-of-date. The way FreeCAD starts has changed a few times, and following an old tutorial can be confusing. The advice I've provided is correct in June 2019.

I'm fond of both FreeCAD and Fusion360. FreeCAD is good for single parts and it runs on my preferred platform (Linux). I switch to Windows10 and Fusion for multiple parts / assemblies / complicated projects. Lots to like about Fusion, but it's a cloud service and may not always be free.


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