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Printrbot Talk Forum • View topic - CAD for elementary students

CAD for elementary students

Discussions about CAD use and designing

CAD for elementary students

Postby itsmrtang » 2016-Feb-Wed-20-Feb

Which CAD software would you recommend for 10-12 years olds in an introduction to additive manufacturing class?

Cloud-based would be best since students have Chromebooks. Our computers are 10+ years old.

Students eventually will print small objects they have designed on a PrintrBot Play.

Thanks much!
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CAD for elementary students

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Re: CAD for elementary students

Postby ei8htohms » 2016-Feb-Wed-21-Feb

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Printrbot GO v.1 - steampunk
Auto bed compensation via endstop wired bed mounts
Thrust bearings and Oldham couplers for the
8mm Igus trapezoidal leadscrews w/
Igus DryLin nuts
PB LCD/encoder
GT2 belts
X and Y motors upgraded to Kysans
Twin 30mm fans

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Re: CAD for elementary students

Postby frankv » 2016-Feb-Wed-22-Feb

Cloud-based doesn't necessarily mean that the CAD program runs on some computer in the cloud.

For example, OnShape.com runs on your local workstation, I think in JavaScript.

For simple objects (and complex ones), OnShape should be fine.
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Re: CAD for elementary students

Postby Thor » 2016-Mar-Wed-04-Mar

The age you mention is pretty young to start in the deep end (SolidWorks / Inventor being the deeper side of the pool). There are a number of programs you might try, but I just (in fact, an hour ago!) ran across this site: https://makethingsnow.com/beta/.

It looks promising, especially if the kids are already familiar with minecraft!

If your students are keen, they might also try their hands on Sketchup, but the stl export function might be a problem.

Slicing and printing itself is a matter of importing into Cura and sending it to the printr.
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Re: CAD for elementary students

Postby evanalmighty » 2016-Mar-Wed-10-Mar

Onshape.com
It's very well supported, easy to learn/catch on. And once they learn it they can use it in the future at their jobs. OnShape is very similar to Solid works, Caria, and NX which are the main tools used in the industries today.
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Re: CAD for elementary students

Postby BobP » 2016-Nov-Mon-08-Nov

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Re: CAD for elementary students

Postby BobP » 2016-Nov-Mon-09-Nov

FWIW, I have used SketchUp in classes that I teach at my local library. The youngest students have been 5th graders and they seem to be able to work well with it but I keep the functionality quite simple. I create a tool set that shows only the tools needed to complete our project so as to not overwhelm them with SketchUp's vast array of features.
STL export is not a problem, simply go to the extension warehouse (access built into SketchUp) and get the STL export extension. A nice feature of the STL export extension provided by the SketchUp team is that if your students are more comfortable doing their 3D modeling in inches (instead of mm), the STL export has a check box you can select to cause the export to be converted to milimeters.
If the 3D designs are kept simple I think "older" computers will work OK. I have been running SketchUp on my older Toshiba laptop with 4GB system memory, 1.3GHz AMD Turion processor.
That being said, SketchUp is NOT the easiest tool to use for 3D modeling. I prefer it because it is similar to CAD tools I have used in a previous lifetime. I would give "Tinkercad" a look as it might allow younger students to realize successful projects more quickly. Tinkercad has a very nice tutorial and it is web-based. However, even though it is web-based it allows easy download of your designs for local printing.

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