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Thread: Goodbye Free SOLIDWORKS

  1. #51

    Join Date
    Apr 2021
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    Finland
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    I started using CAD in 1987 with Strim 100. Last 20+ years I have used Catia V4 and V5 before retiring this year. I also made the CSWP.

    DS offers also different packages to individual students, but it is difficult to say what they really offer. https://edu.3ds.com/en/backtoschool

    I like how easy the FEA with assemblies is with Solidworks. It is much easier to use than Ansys, though less versatile. FreeCAD seems to lack this feature.

    I have used the free Solid Edge 2D for making electric schematic drawings for the vintage aircraft we have restored. It is a very good and easy to use software for that purpose even if the free version doesn't save high quality jpegs to use in POH. https://www.plm.automation.siemens.com/plmapp/education/solid-edge/en_us/free-software/free-2d-cad

    Solid Edge seems to offer free educational and community versions of their 3D CAD too. I think I will test them before 3Dexperience. https://www.plm.automation.siemens.c...ware/community

  2. #52
    steve's Avatar
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    Jul 2011
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    Utah
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    Siemens also offers a 60 day trial version of their flagship CADCAM product, NX, aka Unigraphics.

  3. #53

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    Sep 2021
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    6
    So does anyone have anything they report on the new 3dExperience for makers? Still wanting to see some reviews from actual users. What I can find out so far it no one likes it.

  4. #54

    Join Date
    May 2020
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    5
    I use SolidWorks for our office and had a chance to speak with our VAR yesterday about the 3D Experience SolidWorks. He actually walked me thru him creating a part and saving locally. I'll have to say, the speed seemed as fast as my desktop SolidWorks. He explained that while some of the features were in the cloud, the SolidWorks desktop is installed locally with the "Premium" version found in the "3D Maker" offering. You have the option of saving to the cloud or locally during your "File Save as". You can use it on any pc as your login is stored in the cloud. He also said there are features in the Desktop SolidWorks that are not in the 3D Experience due to cost, one of them being "CAM". He said 3D Experience isn't able to handle "Add-In's" which is another reason CAM isn't available.

    The major drawback for me is the ability to go between my office SolidWorks and the 3D Experience. He said I could create a part in my office software and open it in 3D Experience but once the file was saved in 3D Experience, you would not be able to open it in a commercially licensed SolidWorks so that rules out me being able to do parts for work and home on the same software. He said importing a file from 3D Experience to another cad package shouldn't be a problem. DS is just looking out for their financial stability and didn't want people buying the cheaper version and mixing seats with the full blown version. The VAR said he's been using it for roughly 2 years and he can see vast improvements.

    I personally will wait a bit to renew my membership and buy the 3D Experience software. I think it has a long way to go if it ever gets there to be as user friendly as the desktop SolidWorks. The sad thing is, this will hurt EAA with new and membership renewals.

  5. #55
    This is bad, really bad for me. I retired in 2019 after many years in product design, used many different CAD programs - Xerox Expert in the mid 80s, Pro E in the 90s, Solidworks from 2000 onwards. I found out about the 'free' S/W version from EAA and have been using it for numerous projects, but they cannot be made public or hang out on the web. Too much intellectual property at stake. I've got too many assemblies, subassemblies and parts to store in the cloud on someone's server I have no control over. Not going to happen.

    I'd like to stick with S/W but now I'll have to look at Alibre or Onshape, but they have their limitations too. Over 20 years invested in S/W and now they do this. Just awful, truly awful. Goodbye S/W.

  6. #56

    Join Date
    Sep 2021
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    6
    Well, I pulled the trigger on Alibre Design Expert over the weekend. I had been doing the trial version for a couple of weeks. In my day job I use Solidworks everyday doing tooling design so the EAA setup was great for me. I also do design work for myself and my own wood working projects and such. So I didn't have to learn another software package. I like Onshape but not the free public idea and can't afford the get a subscription. Not real fond of the whole cloud thing either. Alibre will do everything I need even if it is in a different way than Solidworks. It is close enough that I can manage and I own it and can save local, also I don't have to rely on an internet connection to do anything. For the power it is really affordable.

  7. #57

    Join Date
    Apr 2020
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    2
    I just started using it, but fusion 360 seems to be quite nice. For the average person, it appears it will be just as intuitive as solidworks.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  8. #58

    Join Date
    Mar 2020
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    4
    Quote Originally Posted by gwbruce View Post
    Well, I pulled the trigger on Alibre Design Expert over the weekend....
    What was the price? $1450 as shown on their website?

  9. #59

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    Sep 2021
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    6
    Quote Originally Posted by jridge16 View Post
    What was the price? $1450 as shown on their website?
    Yes. I went ahead and got the one year maintenance too. The total was $1800.00. I know it is a lot but I am not tied to the cloud for any of it and don't have to worry about where or who has my files.

    ripley98: I have used Fusion 360 and like it but when they cut you back to only 10 open files I kind of got turned off. That really wasn't going to hinder me but it is another of the cloud based packages and to subscribe to it was cost prohibitive for me. It has a few quirks that bothered me too but it is a nice software.

  10. #60
    rwanttaja's Avatar
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    Jul 2011
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    Seattle
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwbruce View Post
    Yes. I went ahead and got the one year maintenance too. The total was $1800.00. I know it is a lot but I am not tied to the cloud for any of it and don't have to worry about where or who has my files.
    Folks should note that this is the "Design Expert" version of Alibre, which supports CAM features. The "Atom 3d" version is $150, and generates files compatible with my 3D printer.

    Ron Wanttaja

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