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I notice there is quite some time since anyone posted anything about sketchup.

1770 Views 22 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  DesertRatTom
Is this because everyone is now full bottle, or, doesn't sketch up apply any more?
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I've been using Sketchup since it first came out and was a Google product - free and super useful. I stayed with it for many, many years, always upgrading as long as it was free. I use it only as a hobbyist and could never justify the cost. My wife owns the last paid, non-subscription version because she uses it in her theatre scenic design work. That version has lots of nice features that allow the creation proper drawings you can give to a master carpenter for building.
With the advent of the subscription model, the price went beyond what she could justify for her business, so she lives in fear that a future MacOS update will kill off her version of SU. I still run the last free version from time to time but discovered that all of my files opened just fine in the web version so I'm pretty much set if I update my MacBook Pro and SU stops working.
I do a lot of designing of 3D-printed stuff for theatres and escape rooms (and me) and SU simply doesn't cut it because that's not what it's designed for: it's for architecture, woodworking and landscape design (and theatre sets). It's not parametric and has a problem with small dimensions - sometimes planar surfaces stop being planar and everything collapses in a heap. Being parametric means I can couple dimensions so that if I change one, the others change with it. SU can't so modifying a design to change one dimension can be a nightmare.
For this reason, I have migrated to FreeCAD after tinkering in Fusion360 and a couple of others. I really liked F360 but the free version is somewhat limited and the CAD files are proprietary - if Autodesk decides to quit offering a free version, all my designs are gone. FreeCAD is different from and less polished than F360, but it is open source and under constant development. There are zillions of tutorials in every language imaginable and finding help or guidance is pretty easy.
FreeCAD is not at all like SU and I spent a year un-learning the SU paradigm so I could use FreeCAD properly. It requires more discipline to use FC I think, because there is an important order-of-operations you need to follow to create and object that can be printed or built. I'm old but the learning process has been very exciting and I can spend hours refining a design and printing prototypes. Eventually my wife comes up and reminds me I was supposed to cook...
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