looking for design software advice

Discussion in 'Education' started by goldhunter_2, Feb 23, 2012.

  1. goldhunter_2
    Joined: Apr 2010
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    goldhunter_2 Junior Member

    My oldest son is off at college my youngest will be out of high school in three more years. What this means for my personal schedule is that I can finally build another boat and do some traveling.

    I am confident in my actual ability to design and build the current boat , it isn't the first BUT way back when I did this type stuff we used paper drawing and lofted all parts by hand then cut, yep seems like allot looking at what CAD an cut files are used now days ......... I know it would be much faster and easier to have computer drawings and cut files for a plasma table the problem is I have download things like soildworks & training videos and maxsurf13 but I can't seem to comprehend the use of these computer programs (I guess that the old saying you can't teach a old dog new tricks referees to me) SO I decided I would even check the local collage but they do not offer a naval architectural course , how ever I did find a school up in Melbourne Florida (about 1.5 hours drive form me) that has that course but will not allow me to enroll for just that one class:mad: Does anyone have suggestion for a easier for me to comprehend software program or some other way to find a hands on educational course somewhere near by me?
     
  2. DCockey
    Joined: Oct 2009
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    DCockey Senior Member

    It's still allowed to design and build a boat without a computer involved.

    Rhino provides some very good tutorials. You can download an evaluation copy and the tutorials for free. www.rhino3d.com http://download.rhino3d.com/rhino/4.0/evaluation/download/ http://download.rhino3d.com/Rhino/4.0/Rhino4Training/

    A couple of "distant learning" alternatives if you are interested in learning to apply Rhino to boat design:

    Yacht Design School offers a CAD course on how to use Rhino in designing boats. It teaches how to create hull surfaces, etc in Rhino and do stability and related calculations using Rhino and a spreadsheet, and is pretty extensive. They sell Rhino to CAD course students at the educational price which means the cost of the CAD course plus Rhino is about the same as the regular price of Rhino. I bought my copy of Rhino this way and did about half of the course. Quality of the material is generally good though somewhat uneven. The instructor, Nathan Shawl, is very responsive and helpful. There is no set schedule. http://www.macnaughtongroup.com/ydsform1.htm Price info at bottom page.

    ProBoat E-Training periodically offers a six week course by Cliff Estes in "Rhino Modeling for Marine Designer". http://rhino1202.eventbrite.com/ I haven't taken this course but I do have the"Modeling in Rhinoceros for Marine Designers" CD which Estes' sells though his Baseline Technology company. http://www.basline.com/Products.shtm The CD material seems more oriented towards someone looking to create geometry based on an existing design rather than creating a new design. It is not as comprehensive as the YDS course.
     
  3. goldhunter_2
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    goldhunter_2 Junior Member

    yes I understand that I can still design the without a computer maybe I didn't word it correctly my main reason for wanting to use the computer design is so I will be able to have the "cut files" for a plasma table where I can just sit the 8'x24' sheets of aluminum to cut parts without hand lofting and hand cutting each one


    I had been looking for "naval architecture schools" I'll try searching for yacht design schools , thanks

    I have not tried the rhino software yet I will have to check it out maybe it will not be as hard for me to learn , the kids now days seem like they are born plugged into a computer and this stuff easy for them but it takes me a while to figure it out..lol
     
  4. DavidJ
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    DavidJ Senior Member

    Rhino is probably the best for the price as it will allow you to do the full design. The hull design specific software like maxsurf/autoship/delftship/mulitsurf/ etc you will probably still want a 2D drafting program to create your cut files.

    DCockey's suggestion of the yacht design school program sounds like a good choice for learning the software. I also have the Cliff Estes CD and it's only so so. It's fairly cheap, but I can't highly recommend it. Especially for learning the type of cutfile production and detail drafting type of stuff you want to know. It isn't much better than the tutorials included with Rhino and the Rhino training manuals. Yes the examples you model are boats instead of coffee cups but the tools are the same.

    The problem with looking at Naval Architecture education is that NA schools aren't really there to teach CAD. They are 3 to 6 year degrees that usually sprinkle the educations with a course or two involving CAD. The student does a year or two in general science and engineering classes and another couple of years doing specific marine engineering courses. You might be required to submit a drawing to display the results of your work but rarely do they offer full time classes in how to make drawings.

    I really wouldn't worry about how to draw a boat as the main stumbling block. If you can use CAD to produce a set of plans for a house you can use it to produce boat plans. Learning software and learning boat design are separate tasks. I'd recommend taking some autocad classes at a local community college. You will learn much faster with face to face time and Rhino shares a lot of commands with autocad. If you are proficient in 2d ACAD it is a lot easier to learn 3d Rhino. You will already know all about trimming, offsetting, and the differences between curves and arcs.

    One other option you could consider is getting somebody else to produce your design on computer. Especially if you would rather spend more time building and less time fighting with software. It might be substantially quicker for you to draw your boat by hand and then pay somebody else to turn that into cutfiles. It is very easy to convert hand drawn lines plans into a 3D model. Depending on the complexity of the boat you want to design it may also be a lot cheaper to get somebody else to do it. Just a thought.
     
  5. goldhunter_2
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    goldhunter_2 Junior Member

    I am thinking about the yacht design school DCockey mentioned my concern is I just don't seem to learn things well if it is not a hands on one on one type actual class , but may give it a try anyway.

    yes that was the problem the school I spoke with had they would not allow me to sign up for just the CAD course but I am trying to speak with another local school to see about taking just a regular autoCAD course to help me grasp how the computer stuff works. I used to actual draw houses but with appear I can't use the computer for them either ...lol

    I actual talked with karsten a while back since he has worked with aluminum hulls , modifying his plans would be expensive but can be done, custom design would be even more expensive and I image the point you mentioned about the complexity and size of what I want would also cost extra. form what I understood for our talking was that transferring simple sketch or detailed draws to the computer was difficult and time consuming basically he had to start form scratch so I just dropped that idea.


    now I have another question , you mentioned I would also want a 2D software for the cut files as I mentioned I have tried the soildworks and it had a way to take your 3D object and break it down into 2D views for individual sheets of parts ........ I ASSUMED that all the 3D modeling software did this, was I wrong in that assumption?
     
  6. Petros
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    Petros Senior Member

    You might just do it the way you are used to, with hand drafted drawings (it would be much faster than learning to use all new CAD method of lofting), and than just pay a local NA or designer to covert it to your digital cut files. He/she might even offer some helpful design input too. Most will be grateful to do a small job right now.

    In my own consulting firm I have found that creating CAD files is not any faster than doing it by hand, even after I have a fully experienced cad operator to create the drawings. I can usually create complete drawings faster by hand (I have been doing that for almost 40 years) over an experienced CAD operator.

    The CAD drawings are faster for doing changes, and it allows you to transmit drawings faster and covert them for other uses (like the CAM cut files you are referring to).

    But, unless you want to spend the next six months just getting proficient at creating cad drawing before you even start creating real drawings, it is far more cost effective just to pay someone with the expertise to create the cut files you want from your hand done drawings.

    If you want to learn to use modern tools anyway, that is a separate issue, but for doing just one project it is an incredibly inefficient way to work. I am not even proficient on current software anymore, I hire the CAD drafting out if I can not do the drawings by hand. But that frees me up to do the more important parts of the job, rather than creating drawing files.

    Good luck with your project.
     
  7. DavidJ
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    DavidJ Senior Member

    I second everything Petros said.

    Yes almost all 3D software has some way to turn 3D into 2D. Some do it very well, some not so well. However, almost all the time some cleanup is required in 2D to produce a usable output. Rhino works well as a 2D drawing program and as a 3D modeling program. None of the hull modeling software does particularly well in 2D. Solidworks is a great modeling package and it produces very nice 2D drawings in only a few clicks. However, it has very limited 2D tools and drawings often have to be exported to something like autocad for cleaning up.

    Yes converting a hand drawing into a computer drawing does mean starting from scratch. The drawing part, but not the design part. If your lines plan is all drawn out and scanned into the computer a 3D hull model can be created in less than one working day. At that point you can take a section from that model in a couple of seconds.

    I will try to explain what is involved in producing a construction design package. This is what was probably being explained by Micheal Kasten (I assume that's who you meant when you said karsten). The part of a drawing package that takes the longest to produce is the detail design drawings. These can take hundreds of hours even for a small boat because you draw out every piece and show how they all go together. But if you are building the boat yourself you don't really need somebody else to make you these. A simple numbering of this piece goes here could be enough. From what I understand all you really need is a hull model and an expanded plate drawing. That would not take a professional very long to produce, even for a very large vessel. As for complexity, each additional piece you need will require more work. A few bulkheads or other major structure tossed in would take a little more time, but still much much less than buying and learning software. Now if you need every single bracket fit to the hull, numbered, and nested that would be a LOT of work. The more pieces, the more detail, the more cost. For example I once did the complete structural design for an aluminum landing craft that had less than 70 total parts. It was being built by an experience builder that did not need welding schedules or construction details. The entire design was 3 sheets and it was completed in about two days. I've also worked on vessels that have taken hundreds and hundreds of drawings and thousands of man hours to produce the required level of detail (bigger vessels obviously). So really it depends on how much detail you need.
     
  8. goldhunter_2
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    goldhunter_2 Junior Member


    Yes that is who I was speaking of , I sorry for the misspelling. and no I don't need the welding schedules or construction details the main propose would be to get the plate drawings so I could transfer to cut files. I actual stopped the hand drawings after speaking with him before but sounds like I mite consider that route.





    you may be correct I am sure it would be much faster to draw but I have not found anyone local to transfer to cut files at this time. in the worse case scenario I will draw and loft everything by hand




    Thank you to everyone for the input on this matter
     
  9. rwatson
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    rwatson Senior Member

    For my projects, I had files created, amended, and CNC nesting done by people I have never even met.

    One of the beauties of the internet is there are lots of clever people looking for jobs out there, and they can do it better and easier than I can.

    I have never even met, or physically spoken to the last 3 experts I engaged for my projects, and the results were every bit as good as I had hoped.
     
  10. TANSL
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    TANSL Senior Member

    Dear friend, I am a retired naval architect and, therefore, with time to do things. I own software developed for myself that allows working with AutoCAD, moving from flat 2D "Body Plan" to 3D models, get the pieces of shell and internal structure, made "nestings", process them and, finally, get files for numerical control cutting.
    Of course, once you have the 3D model, you can perform all calculations in naval architecture, stability, load conditions, ...
    Depending on the ship that you are thinking, is likely to help you. Could you give me more details of what you wish to do?
    Ignacio López
    My e.mail : 657677483@orange.es
     
  11. goldhunter_2
    Joined: Apr 2010
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    goldhunter_2 Junior Member

    TANSL
    your email was returned looks like your system takes my email as spam

    Hi. This is the qmail-send program at yahoo.com.
    I'm afraid I wasn't able to deliver your message to the following addresses.
    This is a permanent error; I've given up. Sorry it didn't work out.

    <657677483@orange.es>:
    62.36.20.20 failed after I sent the message.
    Remote host said: 550 Spam detected
     
  12. TANSL
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    TANSL Senior Member

  13. goldhunter_2
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    goldhunter_2 Junior Member

    I think the hotmail address worked (it hasn't been returned yet like the others)
     
  14. The Loftsman
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    The Loftsman The Loftsman

    Lofting-nested parts

    Hi Goldhunter,
    Do not know if you got any further with this quest of yours, but i happen to agree mostly with the two main responders to your post, CAD is faster once the design is done but it is really just a quicker way of making mistakes if you ask me, contract the little bit of work that you need done out to someone, or take the time to learn one of the many CAD packages.
    Better still do the work manualy by yourself and get the satisfaction of doing a good job that you have proved out by hand and you know it fits.

    Cheers


     

  15. MikeJohns
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    MikeJohns Senior Member


    The auto hull generators are pretty good, their huge advantage is to produce a hull that meets all the desired coefficients in the first round.

    Hand drawings were a pain and took ages and several iterations particulalry with a new hullform. Even then there were compromises that just weren't worth going around the spiral for again.

    Computers are much more accurate and faster in the hull design phase, i'd save the sketching for the general style but i'd never draw lines by hand now.
     
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