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Old 09-13-2019, 10:22 AM
weldtoride weldtoride is offline
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Default Solidworks for $40

I previously got Solidworks software by taking an evening course in it at my local community college. The student version was free to enrolled students in the SW class, and the instructor was excellent. I took all 3 SW classes offered, so I has SW for three years, then my home copy timed out for the last time.

The student version was a full-blown edition, except for the timing out after one year. Additionally any drawings outputted were tattooed with "student version, not for commercial use". This doesn't stop a shop from water or laser cutting, however.

Now through partnership with the EAA, I learned that SW is offering the student version free of charge to any EAA member, and there are multiple SW forums, tutorials, etc available thru EAA, in addition to the student forums offered by SW.

EAA basic membership starts at $40 a year, and there are other member benefits as well. I have attended the Oshkosh event multiple times where I have sat and watched welding instructors from Lincoln and Miller, as well as many great metalworkers present workshops, including Kent White.

https://eaa.org/eaa/eaa-membership/e...esource-center

It sounded too good to be true to me at first, but yesterday I downloaded the latest version of SW and it's running again on my machine.
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Last edited by weldtoride; 09-13-2019 at 10:01 PM.
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Old 09-13-2019, 12:53 PM
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mr.c mr.c is offline
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Mark: Is this a CAD only or CAD/CAM? That is, will it generate G-code.
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Old 09-13-2019, 09:42 PM
weldtoride weldtoride is offline
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Carey,

The immediate answer to your question is above my pay grade.

I do know that SW is a CAD system. Since thousands of users do build things with it, it's just a matter of how they translate into CAM.

You can export drawings easily as dxf files: https://help.solidworks.com/2018/eng...dxf_export.htm

3D models are a different entity.

I sent an email to a nephew who designs in SW, asking what they use where he works, but a response may take a while....

Solidworks has a partnership with SolidCam:

https://www.solidworks.com/partner-product/solidcam

I do not know what the financials are regarding SolidCam and the student version of SW CAD. Whether or not it is available with the student version is a question for SW. I have downloaded additional SW free "libraries" and extras in the past from SW, but maybe this is a bigger add-on?

There are 3rd party programs, this is one that came up in a search, I cannot speak for it beyond that:

https://mecsoft.com/freemill-for-sol...in-solidworks/

I'll let you know when I hear form my nephew.

Hope that helps.
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Last edited by weldtoride; 09-13-2019 at 10:00 PM.
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Old 09-14-2019, 09:44 AM
Reno Reno is offline
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Carey, I recently bought CamBam to use as a CAD/CAM program. It seems complicated at first, but the free download has a generous trial period and there are Utube videos that help with understanding the process.
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Old 09-14-2019, 10:38 AM
billfunk29 billfunk29 is offline
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Default g codes

Solidworks will not do G-code.
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Old 09-14-2019, 12:30 PM
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mr.c mr.c is offline
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Thank you.
I have found CAM programs to be "finicky". I test them trying to generate code for a TuckPuck. I haven't found one yet that will do that simple shallow internal taper. I wind up hand writing the code. I pull the coordinates off of my CAD drawings. Time consuming, but at least the cutter goes where I want it to go. I have seen some CAM generated files go some strange places.

The SolidWorks deal with EAA is tempting. Sometimes jumping from one cad- cad/cam program to another is harder if you are used to another product than if you were a complete newbie. Particularly for an old brain. I think that Will uses SW and Ben. Tempting. I have an old version of BobCad that I started out with,and a Yeager cad/cam that I seem to remember being DOS based, Vector 3D, an older Alibre 3D, and trying to get a handle on learning Fusion 360
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