CAD..for those using CAD in their design process

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Robert Miller, Jan 12, 2006.


Input device(s) of choice used in CAD for boat design.

Poll closed Feb 11, 2006.
  1. Mouse

    24 vote(s)
  2. Trackpad

    0 vote(s)
  3. Tablet & Pen

    1 vote(s)
  4. Scan Hand Drawing for Conversion to Cad Files

    0 vote(s)
  5. Combination of two or more of the above ... please explain.

    2 vote(s)
  6. Other ... please explain

    3 vote(s)
  1. Robert Miller
    Joined: Dec 2003
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    Location: Rhode Island

    Robert Miller Junior Member

    For those using a CAD package in the design of boats .. (2D,3D, and modelling)...

    Are you drawing predominantly with a mouse, trackpad, or pen & tablet?
    Are you scanning a hand drawing, and using your software to convert this image to useable CAD files?

    If you please, respond in the poll, AND add your specific thoughts and comments to the thread below.

    For example, if using a tablet... which one, specifically?
    For those using a combination of these input devices, would you please describe your typical workflow methods?

    Thanks for all thoughts.
  2. RHough
    Joined: Nov 2005
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    Location: BC Summers / Nayarit Winters

    RHough Retro Dude

    Inside the CAD program I use a combination of mouse, and command line commands to work on drawings.

    The hull shape is imported from Hullform, not designed within the CAD drawing system.

    I'm an amateur in that I don't do this for a living. I learned mechanical drawing in college and use the same methods when working with paper or software.

    It sure is nice to have all 3 views get updated when any view is changed :)

    I'm sure that if I had started with a CAD program I would draw differentially, but I don't do anything with CAD that I could not do on paper.
  3. CGN
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    Location: MX

    CGN Senior Member

    Just the mouse, a scanned file is used only if i have to
  4. LP
    Joined: Jul 2005
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    Location: 26 36.9 N, 82 07.3 W

    LP Flying Boatman

    I think that the method might also depend on the intent. Is the boat a project that you intend to build or create plans to offer to the public? Is a great amount of accuracy required? Is it the reproduction of an existing design? Or, are you building a "model"? What is the source of information on the hull?

    If you have a lines plan, it can be digitized(scanned) and brought directly into a CAD package. You can trace the lines with the mouse and move them around to establish the loft path for the hull. In doing it this way, you are depending on the designer to draw the hull fair. In any event, should you actually be building the craft, it should be lofted full size anyways.

    The problem with designing or drawing directly into a CAD package is that if there is not a hull design module for the package, there is no guarantee that you will build/draw a fair hull and plus it's a real bear to create a hull in a straight CAD program.

    If your trying to recreate an existing design, create a data set from the table of offsets (build a table of offsets from the lines plan if you don't have the table) that can be imported into a hulldesign platform (Freeship for instance). This will give you a set of control curves that the hull can be built around.

    If you are creating your own design, create it directly within a hull design package. The hull design software will also return a variety information about your design that is immediately useful to know and can be used down the line for other calculations.

    Once you are comfortable with the hull, it can be exported to your CAD software for furthur developement.

    Like RHough I don't do this professionally. I'm a hobbyist and do it mostly for the mental stimulation. I've spend time as a mechanical designer and done some work as a 3D modeler. Showing my age, I took manual drafting the last year it was offer at the local university before they switched to computer drafting. In regard to input device, I use the mouse, but if I know the exact dimension, I'll keyboard it. Unfortunately, there is not one single product that will do the whole job (I don't know of it anyways) and if there was, I'm afraid it would be quite costly. Especially for the hobbyist.

  5. Jeff
    Joined: Jun 2001
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    Location: Great Lakes

    Jeff Moderator

    I like a wacom intuous tablet and the wacom 5-button 4d mouse (use the pen for photoshop, but the tablet mouse for cad.) I like this because the position is absolute on the tablet so after a while you can hit a given toolbar button without looking. (on the other hand, I started swearing by tablets when mice still had balls.)
  6. Raggi_Thor
    Joined: Jan 2004
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    Location: Trondheim, NORWAY

    Raggi_Thor Nav.arch/Designer/Builder

    Mouse and keyboard in AutoCAD/IntelliCAD.
    Never use the mouse to give a fixed point or distance, use the keyboard when you need accuracy.
  7. Sander Rave
    Joined: May 2005
    Posts: 204
    Likes: 7, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 59
    Location: Amsterdam; The Netherlands

    Sander Rave Senior Member

  8. yipster
    Joined: Oct 2002
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    Location: netherlands

    yipster designer

    work with a big mouse, have to get myself a good pen tho as magic markers all dryed out :(
  9. Sander Rave
    Joined: May 2005
    Posts: 204
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    Location: Amsterdam; The Netherlands

    Sander Rave Senior Member

    same problem over here.. copics and tria's need special care these days ;-)
  10. Hans Friedel
    Joined: Oct 2003
    Posts: 115
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Sweden

    Hans Friedel Senior Member

  11. spank
    Joined: Feb 2004
    Posts: 51
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    Location: Boston

    spank Junior Member

    I use a mouse and a 3-d spaceball. If you work regularly with 3D packages, then this is a very powerful tool that saves vast amounts of time, not to mention helps reduce the possibility of carpel tunnel.

  12. Gilbert
    Joined: Aug 2004
    Posts: 525
    Likes: 5, Points: 28, Legacy Rep: 28
    Location: Cathlamet, WA

    Gilbert Senior Member

    I use the keyboard and mouse in autocad and freeship.
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