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By worn thumbs
I have a bit of experience with several 2D CAD programs and I have done a little with 3D modelling sytems such as proEngineer/Creo.Since I found Freecad I have been trying to become adept with it and am making slow progress.Has anybody else had a look at it?It became more interesting when they developed a machining module to generate toolpaths for CNC machines.Its a lot of capability for no cost,but the documentation really needs some effort.
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By MikeG.
I was with Autocad since R14. Because of the ridiculous cost I've finally gone over to DraftSight...another freebie. It's brilliant, entirely Autocad compatible, and took me about a day to become completely at ease with it. In many ways it is better than Autocad 2D (and there is a paid-for 3D pro version, which is cheaper for a lifetime's license than a single year of Autocad). If you struggle with Freecad, then I highly recommend that you give Draftsight a go.
By worn thumbs
Thanks for the suggestion .The thing is that like you,I used to use Autocad-did the basic course twenty years ago.I also moved to 3D modelling a good while ago in the day job and would prefer to stick with 3D and Freecad does 2D drafting anyway.I find it great that at no cost I can install a 3D parametric modeller and while I can deal with very basic stuff,I wish there was more and better documentation as the developers have done a great job but the help side of things is a bit behind.If,as I hope,a cnc router comes to life in my workshop before long I will be keen to use the machining workbench of Freecad and again it is a bit sparse on the help and documentation side of things.
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OpenScad looks interesting, seems to be considerable discussion on comparing it with FreeCad.

Can't get my head round Cad programs these days, too many years since I had to get my head round such, but I have recently been introduced to OpenScad and have managed to manipulate odd designs from the open source libraries to see how you can easily modify a project using an existing library.

For instance, the following puts the thread on the item below and only needs two numbers changing to change pitch and diameter, as a stub to the basic cylinder library.
module stub382()
screw_thread(38.1, 3.175, 30, 25, PI/2, 2);
translate([0,0,-2]) cylinder(h=50,d=20,$fn=100);
translate([0,0,-2]) cylinder(h=6,d=25,$fn=100);

tr1.jpg (10.32 KiB) Viewed 1405 times
tr2.jpg (12.37 KiB) Viewed 1405 times
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By Eric The Viking
That's nice. One of the frustrating things about SketchUp is the way it handles curves (spiral forms such as threads are even more awkward). I enjoy using it, but much time gets wasted working around the limitations.

Do any of the above have Linux binaries available - it might be worth me having a look.