Free or Low Cost Hull Modeling Software? (2012)

Discussion in 'Software' started by Admin, Jan 1, 2012.


Which free or low cost hull modeling program(s) do you use?

  1. Bearboat

    0 vote(s)
  2. BoatExpress

    1 vote(s)
  3. Carene

    0 vote(s)
  4. Carlson Design Hull Designer

    3 vote(s)
  5. Free!Ship

    19 vote(s)
  6. Free!Ship Plus

    19 vote(s)
  7. DELFTship free

    25 vote(s)
  8. HullCAO

    0 vote(s)
  9. HullForm

    2 vote(s)
  10. jSDN

    0 vote(s)
  11. PolyCAD

    3 vote(s)
  12. Other (please post below)

    5 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
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  1. mctaggert
    Joined: Feb 2012
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    Location: NC, USA

    mctaggert Junior Member

    Chined hull modeling software

    I've been using Carlson's Hulls program for doing quick designs and working out ideas about chined (plywood) hulls. It's primitive, but works fine for what I've been doing and I've been reluctant to take on anything more complex.

    Now I'm ready to make the move to something more complicated. Any recommendations for any of these hull modeling programs? I'm mostly working on plywood multihull designs for my own personal enjoyment. I've downloaded Freeship+ as it had the most users listed in the poll, but I'm ignorant of all this software and open to suggestion. Free is the main criteria, with modeling chined plywood hulls next. Thanks for any suggestions
  2. Leo Lazauskas
    Joined: Jan 2002
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    Location: Adelaide, South Australia

    Leo Lazauskas Senior Member

    I think that it will be difficult to find something much better than Freeship for
    the price you are willing to pay :)
  3. pistnbroke
    Joined: Jan 2009
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    Location: Noosa.Australia where god kissed the earth.

    pistnbroke I try

  4. lewisboats
    Joined: Oct 2002
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    Location: Iowa

    lewisboats Obsessed Member

    For developable hulls I second will not do something that can't be done in ply. That being said... FS/DS will enhance what Carene can do immensely because it isn't as rigid if you use it right. I start almost all the hulls I draw with Carene because I can create a useable base hull in a matter of seconds to a few minutes then flesh it out in FS and/or DS.
  5. alanrockwood
    Joined: Jun 2009
    Posts: 130
    Likes: 16, Points: 18, Legacy Rep: 116
    Location: USA

    alanrockwood Senior Member

    Safe site for Free!Ship Plus download?

    Regarding the Free!Ship Plus downlaod, when I go to the official download sites and try to download the program it links to the site "", and I get warnings from McAfee Site Advisor that it is an unsafe site. Does anyone know of a safe site where the latest version of Free!Ship Plus can be downloaded?
  6. Boat Design Net Moderator
    Joined: Feb 2010
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    Boat Design Net Moderator Moderator

    At hydronship, click download on the top menu to get the full list and then try downloading by clicking the small gray disk icon at the end of the description on the left. It appears the small disk icon there loads the file directly from whereas the download option on the right links to it on depositfiles.
  7. CmbtntDzgnr
    Joined: Jun 2011
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    Location: somewhereonearth

    CmbtntDzgnr Senior Member

    Wishes Wishes

    I wish Freeship/Hydronship would be re-written so that:

    -- hydros can be shown while the user edits the model

    -- hydros can be edited to push the model

    -- spheres/egg shapes could be attached to a surface and moved around to evaluate sponsons, blisters, and duct tunnels, with real-time with hydros displays (obviously, Low quality would have to be set unless a SUPER fast CPU and GPU enable smooth, quick updates in the Highest Quality setting

    -- more hydros constraints could be pre-applied to stop or warn the user from overtweaking a model

    -- import of multiple hulls to compare them in the same window instead of running multiple instances

    -- the MNVDET spreadsheet tool could drive Freeship/Hydronship to enable faster modeling

    -- Freeship and PolyCAD talk to each other better and with mutual driving of a model in the middle, rather than a model in one or the other

    -- MNVDET, PolyCAD, and Freeship/Hydronship work together, with the model in the middle, not separately moved from interface to interface
  8. spidennis
    Joined: Feb 2007
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    Location: south padre island, texas

    spidennis Chief Sawdust Sweeper

    that doesn't sound like free or low cost to me
  9. CmbtntDzgnr
    Joined: Jun 2011
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    Location: somewhereonearth

    CmbtntDzgnr Senior Member


    True, not free, and not cheap.

    But, if the trio got together, and produced something that is greater in sum than the individual parts, then I'd very gladly plunk $500 towards that singular/combined product.

    I like the interfaces of each, and I'm psychologically invested in the information and feature, so it would be awesome. Now, if only ViaCAD had a few more tweaks I want, the 4 of them would be super.
  10. krishkannu
    Joined: Apr 2012
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    Location: india

    krishkannu New Member

    can freeship generate cross curves
  11. Izugarrin
    Joined: Mar 2011
    Posts: 10
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    Location: Spain

    Izugarrin Student

    Yes it does great KN, but the problem for me is that I use NURBS surfaces created in Rhino or in Maxsurf and is complicated to export to Freeship.
    It´s just to use Freeship for the entire process I suppose.
  12. goldhunter_2
    Joined: Apr 2010
    Posts: 44
    Likes: 3, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 36
    Location: USA

    goldhunter_2 Junior Member

    I have liked the maxsurf pro 13 so far and found it to be much easier to work and understand then other for me. but have to say it doesn't have a very good library.

    Rhino even with the T splines, and rhino marine plug ins was difficult to use for someone not farmiler with cad (solid works was easier)

    delftship just didn't like

    freeship agian didn't like

    autoship was to hard

    multisail 8.0 (I think was the name) had a good size library better then all the others I tried but don't know how to transfer the library info to maxsurf

    I tried several others also but don't remember all the names nw
  13. pcfithian
    Joined: Sep 2010
    Posts: 54
    Likes: 2, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 39
    Location: Long Beach, Indiana

    pcfithian Junior Member

    Attached Files:

  14. Boat Design Net Moderator
    Joined: Feb 2010
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    Boat Design Net Moderator Moderator

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