Hi, I’ve been using Sketch-Up Pro for about a year now and use it as a hobby & project visualizer. I’m into timberframing and like to draw up my structures and joinery and play around with modifications (pitch angles, door placements, balconies, mezzanines,etc.).
I don’t really use this software professionally but I do intend on building big-lumber-swing-sets out of a plan I made and see if they sell. (beside the point)
Recently I’ve been wanting to build a model airplane out of 3/32’’ balsa wood and want to use my wife’s ‘CricutMaker’ to cut the pieces for the project. Since I’m not that adept in aerodynamics I don’t feel up for designing my own yet and want to use an existing plan. The plan I found is a .SLDPRT that can’t be opened with sketch-up without the ‘SolidWorks’ extension. I installed this extension but now it’s asking me to pay 150$ subcription to use the extension, and if I’m not mistaken, this if just to look at it and am not even sure if I’ll be able to explode the different components of the model.
So yeah… I’m wondering what are really the advantages of sketchup and of these other CAD softwares that use ‘NURBS’ instead of polygon faces. I’m also wanting to desing some moving mechanisms using gears and chains and think this is doable with SketchUp but havn’t taken the time yet to do the proper tutorial to learn about these types of dynamic parts.
I guess my questions are:
-Do I have to pay 150$/year to ‘SolidWorks’ to read a .SLDPRT file?
-When I do read it will I be able to play around until I get the flat templates i need to print/cut the wood?
-Are these other types of CAD softwares as easy to use as SketchUp and which is better for testing out dynamic parts and gearing ratios?
-If the top two work out, how would you go about exporting the individual parts of a wood plane from an assembled 3D model so they stay to scale with themselves.
Thanks, Sorry for the long post. I just want to be understood that 150$ extra of my SketchUp Pro subcription is a bit much for hobbies.