OHHHH WOWOWOWOWOW

Leo Voisine

Member
Messages
4,772
Location
East Freeetown, Massachusetts
In industry I used Solidworks and got quite good at it. MAN - do I miss it - HUGELY

Sketchup just does NOT cut it for me - mostly because it is not parametric

I started to get into Fusion 360. Sure it's free, or at least it WAS.
Fusion 360 is good and I reccomend it. PLUS - it has machining. I tried it once, but I really don't need it as I prefer Aspire.
I had to upgrade my Fusion 360 to a paid subscription at I think it was $150 / year.

I was watching April Wilkerson on Instagram and she was using Solidworks. WOW
That's the first time I see Solidworks on a "DIY -hobby" level.

SOLIDWORKS? REALLY?
WOW - I love Solidworks.
I would MUCH rather have Solidworks than Fusion.
GONNA do it
It's only $99 dollar a year.

April said you can get a limited time 20% discount.
Now if I can only find it.
 

Brent Dowell

Administrator
Staff member
Messages
15,683
Location
Reno NV
I've enjoyed using sketchup, due to it's ease of use for me at least. I've tried to use fusion 360 a few times, and if I follow the tutorials, I can generally do something, but never really got the hang of it.

Might have to give this a try if you think it's worthwhile.
 

Leo Voisine

Member
Messages
4,772
Location
East Freeetown, Massachusetts
I KNOW - there is a steep learning curve to Solidworks, but as an engineer designing jigs and fixtures every day for a living and using it just about all day every day for 13 years I got pretty good at it. Also there were 20 other design and manufacturing engineers using it as much as and more that me. We also had paid support. I had ample opportunity to use it and learn it.

If anyone does decide to try it out, I MIGHT be able to help.

I can do Fusion 360 but I am a novice at it.

I CAN do Solidworks - period.
I could get a job as a Solidworks design engineer without hesitation..

To me it's like being away from home for a long time and then finally getting back to my nice warm heated waterbed.

It is a fair bit clunky to get it installed and working - BUT - well worth it.

Ahhhhhh - home at long last.

I just whipped this up in about 5 minutes. There are several upgrades that I need to get used to.
This is a very SIMPLE part.

First.jpg

A project on my list is to draw my ENTIRE machine in Solidworks.
Then to draw up my rotary axis and design a brake to hold rotary motion, fired via "M" code in the CNC G-Code program. I will need to write that into the post processor.

I did a pile of that stuff at work, so it should be fairly easy for me.

Whooo Hoooo

I can do some real honest to goodness design work - I am SOOOOOOO excited.
 

Darren Wright

Administrator
Staff member
Messages
18,640
Location
Kansas City, Missouri
I purchased, but just fyi, they need to setup your account, which takes about a half hour to see any links. Just watch for the follow-up email saying your account is ready.

Any idea how big the install download is @Leo Voisine? I may need to wait until my data plan refreshes for the month.
 

Leo Voisine

Member
Messages
4,772
Location
East Freeetown, Massachusetts
Downloading JUST the 3D maker portion is not enough to get you into the "real" solidworks CAD.

Once you get that portion installed there are a few more steps.

It took a while, but I do other things while waiting.
I am making Pillow bungs, and the "pillow" top is a L O N G run.
So I get downloads working, then I get the pillow top working then I go get some Vinyl Siding out.

I think all together it took a couple of hours to get where I wanted to be.

I also needed a file from the internet.
I can email that to you

Then you go into the 3Dmaker Solidworks and go to a certain APP inside the maker software.
That App will take an hour or more to install.

After that - you have full access to Solidworks Professional.
Of course there are limitations, but they are minor.
 

Leo Voisine

Member
Messages
4,772
Location
East Freeetown, Massachusetts
Darren, I remember one time you said you had trouble remembering about variables and parametric

That is simple - I can walk you through that.

Solidworks is SOOO much easier than Fusion.

Once into assemblies, Solidworks makes it easy AND parametric.
 

Ryan Mooney

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
7,040
Location
The Gorge Area, Oregon
Passed on to some folks I know, I suspect they'll find it useful!

Two licensing limitations stood out for me as mildly problematic (at least combined):

"3DEXPERIENCE SOLIDWORKS for Makers is meant for personal projects and non-commercial use. Per our terms and conditions, you may sell items you make for a profit up to and not exceeding US$2,000 a year."

Ok that's mostly fine I guess, lots of companies have similar terms. A bit low ($2000 isn't much nowadays) but "fine".

Further down though

"Files and data created with your Maker account are digitally watermarked and can only be opened up in another Maker platform. You cannot open up files created with your Maker account within a commercial or academic platform."

That seems a bit problematic combined with the above. So you'd have to re-implement all of your models if you upgraded? I mean sure if you're Leo and it take like 2 minutes per :D but for those of us who aren't that could be a relatively high bar.

The next jump up is . "One standalone license is $3,995. The annual subscription service price, which covers technical support, upgrades, and more for one year, is $1,295." which is quite a bar to jump up to!

So this seems most useful if you're not going to use it to design any meaningful number of things for commercial sale but almost entirely for "in-house" items (there's probably a lot of us in that class), or you're just interested in learning the tool and planning to shortly move to a MUCH higher volume of pro-sales and don't mind re-doing all of your previous work.
 

Ryan Mooney

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
7,040
Location
The Gorge Area, Oregon
Yeah it's still a super interesting deal! Seemed worth noting the limitations as they might be nice to know depending on the use case. For 90% of the usage I could imagine see from folks here or similar hobby users I reckon it's still pretty interesting.

I see there are some extensions limitations as well, but I don't know enough know if that's meaningful for non-pro's. I suspect mostly not based on my (very) quick read.
 

Leo Voisine

Member
Messages
4,772
Location
East Freeetown, Massachusetts
Fusion 360 is also really good. I paid a subscription fee based of things that suit me. For the most part Fusion will do all that Solidworks will do. For me - Solidworks is a no brainer, because there is zero learning curve.

Fusion can do FULL 4-th axis machining which is a big plus for me. Solidworks does not do any machining.

So - at least for me. Solidworks as well as Fusion has aspects for me.

Either way, for a new user learning Fusion "may" be a little easier - maybe. But either way - they both have a steep learning curve.

As I mentioned before. I want to design a brake for my rotary axis. Solidworks will be much easier as there is no learning curve to me. I would have done it in Fusion, but it would be a lot harder because I don't know fusion as well as Solidworks..
 

Ryan Mooney

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
7,040
Location
The Gorge Area, Oregon
Good perspective!

I have a buddy who's building out an industrial design and maker space for the local college and he was pretty interested in the Maker version after I fwd'd it to him. The goal is to be able to prep folks for more industrial design and control jobs plus offer some facilities to the community. So having something like Solidworks and a way to use it outside the purely education space seems like it could be super useful for folks heading into that space.
 

Leo Voisine

Member
Messages
4,772
Location
East Freeetown, Massachusetts
It is certainly a GREAT intro into a real job.

Solidworks is extremely well accepted in the industrial world. If a business needs to fill a position as a designer or engineer it is always a BIG point when reviewing resumes to see Solidworks on the resume. Training people to use any CAD is expensive. I got lucky. Particularly in a work environment whereas people don't keep a job for a long term anymore. Engineers are "generally" moving on every 5 years or so, as, I did. There are lots of reasons for that, and a different topic.

So, getting the maker platform is HUGE, particularly for anyone looking to enhance their skills base. I know this is a "woodworking" forum and many of the folk here are not looking to become design engineers. Also, many folk here are on the older end of the age spectrum. I suppose I am a bit "unique" coming at this from a different angle. I do a lot of non-traditional woodworking and I do a lot of non-woodworking things in my shop. In a "traditional" woodworking forum, I don't really "fit", but this forum is a bit unique. It is not really a "maker" forum, but it is receptive to "maker" things. In my view, it is migrating and that is good. A couple of "maker" youtubers I like are Darbin Ovar and April Wilkerson. They get into a lot of stuff like; Leather, Welding, metal, wood, CNC and so on. Mike here like blacksmithing, others are into CNC, some into photography, and some into gardening. Like I said, this forum is not just about traditional woodworking.

So, my introduction to Solidworks Maker platform is more to the "maker" aspect of this forum. It's not for all - for sure, but it IS for some.
 
Top