Intro to CAD


There are some people on my team who are starting to learn how to CAD before season starts. Other than having CAD classes during meetings, what are some good online tutorials/videos that would help them learn to CAD specifically related to FRC?

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1114’s Simbotics Solidworks Series and 973’s RAMP Videos are two of the best resources you’ll find for learning design and CAD for FRC.


Okay, thank you!

What software does your team use?

We use both SolidWorks and Fusion 360.

Is there a reason you’re using both? I don’t know much about Fusion’s workflow and compatibility but generally mixing two CAD softwares isn’t the best idea.

My team uses solidworks for CAD, but one of our mentors and I do CAM using fusion 360’s built in system. The only reason is that I am used to it, it works on MacOS, and it’s easy enough to do file transfer. With fusion I can do CAM on the team CAD laptop that I have checked out (which is an enormous brick) or on my personal 2015 MacBook Air which is much lighter and easier for me to take to classes at school. We haven’t had any problems with it at all thus far.

Our team uses both softwares because we CAD on our own laptops, so some of us have Mac and others have Lenovo or Dell.

I highly recommend against this. Using two different softwares for CAD presents a whole bunch of compatibility issues that would be a pain to deal with. Why not use Fusion 360 all around? It’s supported by both Mac and Windows. Or have you looked into Onshape? It’s hosted online, and all you need is a web browser to access it, regardless of what type of computer you’re using.

Both options are free and standardizing the software you use for CAD will save you a lot of headaches when working together to design a robot.

Check out the Solidprofessor voucher. Their material is very very good! Plus their videos are searchable, so as you progress, you login, type in what you are looking for, and the good video will show up on how to do it. It’s extremely easy to use and understand.

Oh, I put these videos together some time ago. Pretty straightforward and short for each one. If you are completely new, they will help a bit with basic functionality of Solidworks.

Awesome, I’ll check them out! Thanks!

Big +1 for Onshape, we use it and its great

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I’m all about Onshape, as I’ve posted here and mentioned all over CD, if you search for it.

It works really well for many teams and I’m happy to support whoever wants to give it a shot.

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This is a very good beginner tutorial it does not directly relate to FRC but it covers the basics well, there are other videos in the series too.

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I will definitely check that out! Thank You so much!

I’ll second this for 3357, Fusion is nothing compared to Solidworks, but the CAM engine for Fusion is amazing, however we are looking to move to Solidworks CAM in 2020 so we can keep it all under one hood.

I would recommend you only use Soldiworks if possible, also look into grabcad for keeping track of all your users working on the same models.

I’ll look into that, and GrabCad is definitely useful! Thanks!

It very much depends on the system you are using. Solidworks is the mechanical industry standard. Solidprofessor provides FRC teams a full suite for them to use and I have found that to encompass everything about Solidworks and also a true working knowledge about Solidworks you will need to know.

If using Autodesk products, I recommend checking out their student expert site as they have many tutorials from beginning to advanced across all their different products.

Check out The Compass Alliance CAD Pathway