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Old 02-28-2019, 12:29 AM   #1 (permalink)
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3D CAD for streamliner design - Fusion 360, or....?

Hi, all!

Trying to model and then cut male forms for a composite streamliner travel trailer, and I'm wondering if there's a better software out there for my needs than Fusion 360.

Software parameters:
Free or very inexpensive
Can develop 3D surfaces in complex curves
Can output surface areas for total/selected areas
Can create forms with shell allowances
Can export forms to be cut on a CNC router

I saw that Macskyver had used Fusion 360 in his aeroshell design/build, and it seems to check a few of the boxes I have. What I am wondering is if there are better/simpler options for a beginner, or if I need to just get to learning this and enjoy having the new skill at the end of the learning curve.

Thanks for your opinions and help!

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Old 03-05-2019, 01:00 AM   #2 (permalink)
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No responses yet? maybe everyone is snowed in.

What experience do you have? What hardware do you have?
Quote:
composite streamliner travel trailer.... 3D surfaces in complex curves
So your going to CNC formers for an eggcrate form to shape what?

I honestly don't know the best suggestion. One approach might be a NURBs modeler and slicing software like 3D printers use. Have you thought about the size of the CNC router required?

Personally, I find a box modeler has enough of a leaning curve. I use Wings 3d and it outputs 13 file types including .stl. I use Wings™, .3ds and .obj.

My designs have a simple convex hull that can be defined to eight decimal places. I like the idea of formless construction, using peel patterns. Using a sphere that is oblated differentially on three axes.





Resulting in a motorhome



I'm currently modeling an old trailer I had, a 1953 Silver Streak Clipper. I find that modelling the end caps would be easier in a NURBs modeler.

edit: I have no idea why those IMGs won't embed, you can open them in a new tab.
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Old 03-05-2019, 12:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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If you are producing your own plug form with a CNC, then you could do what I did on my CarBEN project. I used SketchUp. The problem with SU though is the 3D model is difficult / impossible to use in CFD to test it.
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Old 03-05-2019, 01:33 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I had thought about mentioning CarBEN EV5 Full Sized Prototype Construction - 5 Seat Electric Car, but started with 'what materials?'.

Randy Grubb or Christopher Runge do hand-beaten aluminum over an MDF eggcrate.

https://duckduckgo.com/?q=sketchup+export+options

It all comes down to the tool-chain. Modeler-->slicer-->CNC.

ThomCat316 Do we get to see the design? That determines a lot of parameters.
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Old 03-06-2019, 09:08 AM   #5 (permalink)
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SolidWorks is a 3D modeling package that is widely used. While the retail price is $4000, there is a legal way to get a student copy for free. The student copy does everything that the full priced copy does, except that any drawings are labeled as "academic use only". You can use it for your hobby, but not for business use (making money).

It's a member benefit of the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA). Check it out: https://www.eaa.org/eaa/eaa-membersh...esource-center

SolidWorks does have specific requirements for processor, memory, and graphics card.
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Old 03-06-2019, 10:54 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThomCat316 View Post
Hi, all!

Trying to model and then cut male forms for a composite streamliner travel trailer, and I'm wondering if there's a better software out there for my needs than Fusion 360.

Software parameters:
Free or very inexpensive
Can develop 3D surfaces in complex curves
Can output surface areas for total/selected areas
Can create forms with shell allowances
Can export forms to be cut on a CNC router

I saw that Macskyver had used Fusion 360 in his aeroshell design/build, and it seems to check a few of the boxes I have. What I am wondering is if there are better/simpler options for a beginner, or if I need to just get to learning this and enjoy having the new skill at the end of the learning curve.

Thanks for your opinions and help!
I looked into the CFD/CAD/CAM TESLA,BMW,and M-B use,and never received a call back.
Since I wasn't a deep-pocket corporation,they probably figured I'd fail on the net-worth/economics metric for customer viability.
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you may need something of this caliber,as you will need full-scale simulation and the resolution of millions of panels to get accuracy.Not for a desktop computer,but could be done on hundreds of parallel computers.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
One iteration of design requires almost 2-days run time on a supercomputer.
There is some information available online.
If you have a 5-figure income,go for it.You'll need that just to create each data cloud for each simulation.
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Old 03-09-2019, 04:10 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I have used many of the 3d programs and I would definitely go with fusion 360.

The free programs are generally not that well backed up. Sketchup did not agree with the way I think when designing stuff.

Industry standard is solidworks, fusion is a competitor and being an underdog at the moment autodesk (also the creator or autocad) is trying to get people onboard fusion 360.

It is an expensiveish program that is free for students hobbyists and small businesses.

In my opinion it is better than solidworks. Or it agrees more with the way i think.


I do not think the time investment you make will be wasted/lost.

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