What are the Best CAD Programs to Partner with My CNC?

October 3, 2016

Computer aided design or CAD is one of the most valuable tools in the manufacturing world today. The right type of program will make the process of creating prototypes easier, and also work in tandem with computer numeric control or CNC machinery to produce finished products in bulk. The key is to choose one of the best CAD programs to interface with the CDC manufacturing service that will produce those finished products. Here are some examples of the most popular programs on the market today.

TurboCAD Deluxe

One of the features that makes this CAD program so effective is that it has the capability to create two and three-dimensional models. That's different from some of the competition that is designed to handle one or the other. In terms of flexibility, this software will allow the inventor more options in perfecting the design and providing more detailed information for the partner who ultimately produces the prototype and the finished product.

Ease of use is another key advantage. There's no long learning curve to master using the design tools or saving the results.

This software program also offers the benefit of being compatible with many different files used by CNC manufacturing companies. The ability to utilize the files as is rather than having to convert them to a compatible format saves a lot of time and effort.

DesignCAD 3D Max

This CAD software is noted for being easy to learn and use. The interface is intuitive, something that will save time when it comes to creating designs. DesignCAD 3D Max will also support the creation of two and three-dimensional files, something that allows the designer more flexibility.

While the software does support most of the files used by CNC machine manufacturers, the range is not quite as broad as the options offered by TurboCAD Deluxe. Specifically, this software will not the STEP and DGN formats for 3D production.

In terms of pricing, DesignCAD 3D Max is a more affordable choice. If the designer finds that the range of features is sufficient, opting for this more budget-priced software is worth considering.

SketchUp Pro

Anyone familiar with CAD software is likely to feel at home with the SketchUp Pro. The layout of the screens and the easy access to different tools make it possible to dive right in and start designing. Thanks to the way the interface is laid out in such a logical fashion, recreating those designs hastily sketched on a notepad into workable electronic files will not be difficult.

The range of files and digital images supported also makes this software worth considering. It will create files in most of the formats used by CNC manufacturers, although there are some limitations in terms of tools to come up with designs for projects like home designs.

In the end, the best CAD program depends on what type of product the inventor wishes to design. Compare the features found in multiple programs and get recommendations from the machinist who will produce the components. Doing so will ensure the project proceeds without unnecessary delays.

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