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    Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    I recently signed up with a community shop, and now have access to all sorts of CNC equip including a waterjet cutter, and 4 axis mill. I've started learning on Inventor because I get it free as a "student", and this place pushes Autodesk products pretty hard.

    I guess what I'm asking is if anyone has experience with both Inventor, and Solidworks. If so, which one do you think is more friendly for newbies modeling suspension, and learning CAM?

    Currently, I'm having difficulty finding learning resources for Inventor. I've gone through some basic part modeling and assembly tutorials, but most resources assume the viewer has previous CAD experience. I still haven't found any understandable info on Inventor CAM
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    Re: Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    AutoCAD was one of, if not the first CAD packages released. It draws things like a draughtsman would. Inventor is different and builds on this but it was written by autodesk for autocad users. It is great for the oldschool drafties but I find it clunky and not straight forward to use. Inventor is still far superior to autocad though, and is powerful in the right hands

    Solidworks is my CAD package of choice. They are making it more user friendly by the day and it integrates easily with built in tools like FEA (stress analysis) and CFD (fluid flow simulation). Trust me, when you had to program this the long way round, what used to take me days I can now do in 15 minutes. It also links in easily with lots of CAM packages that integrate within the solidworks browser, so if you update your part, you can automatically update your toolpaths without starting from scratch. I have modelled lots of suspension in solidworks and I think its as easy as anything else.

    One thing I will say though, is that one single CAD package is not enough - you need everything, CAD, CAM, and other tools that may be specific to your needs. If your community shop is pushing Inventor, it may be worth pursuing this option, as it will likely link with the rest of their software, particularly if they have CNC stuff and you need to integrate it with a CAM package.

    Also, Very jealous you have a community shop with lots of CNC toys to play with.
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    Re: Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    Senior Member Jerm's Avatar
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    When talking about certain CAD packages and which one is "best" its basically boils down to what Hambam said, if the end user or end customer prefers a certain model type than its likely best to use that. I'm a mechanical designer and I've used them all. once you know one its not hard to make your way thru the others. Inventor is very good for seamless integration with 2D autocad stuff. This works well for sending 2D drawings to shops which can only handle the old school autocad stuff. Many fab shops these days still use AutoCAD 2000 and the likes. I found anytime a shop needs a DXF file its best to save it as the oldest DXF possible so there are no issues when the fab shop reads it in.
    Inventor also has FEA stress analysis abilities just like solidworks does.
    Keep this in mind: Solidworks is owned by Dassault, which is the maker of CATIA. Its not in the best intrest of Dassault to make solidworks super powerful, because then they won't sell any licences of Catia.
    It seems as though solidworks and inventor are strong in certain areas of the country depending on where you go, and it all has to do with how hard its pushed in that region. Have you checked youtube for any inventor tutorials?
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    Re: Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    Sorry for the thread sidetrack.... But, can you tell us more about this community shop??? Is there a website for it? I've always fantasized about starting one up or somehow getting involved in one, would love to learn more. I don't think I live in a big enough city to support one, but still fun to think about. Thanks!
    Just another Dreamer....

    My website: http://www.moto-mule.com/
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    Re: Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    Thanks for helpful input. I'll probably stick with Inventor based on what you guys are saying. I've checked Youtube, and there's little out there that doesn't assume you're already experienced with CAD. Many are just walk throughs, and they give no explanation on what the different functions are actually doing. https://www.youtube.com/user/AutodeskEd/videos is one channel that actually did it right, but they have a limited amount of materiel on Inventor.

    MrBracket, The shop I go to is TechShop. I don't think they have any locations in Oregon, but they like partnering with universities so you might soon get one in Eugene because of your college

    I'm temped to pay for a more official lesson plan. Has anyone tried cadlearning.com? They offer a subscription service where you get access to their tutorials for $50 a month, but I wasn't too impressed with what I've seen.
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    Re: Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    I love solidworks, taught myself all I know watching youtube video's over the years. I'm on it over 16 hours some days and use it at least 5 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    There's a guy named cad junkie that has quite a few step by step videos on youtube, 3 to 12 min. long that are amazing. He starts off with the very simply basics and shortcuts and moves up to more advanced stuff that is easy to follow. I wish I would have found him years earlier....
    www.SinisterSandSports.com
    918-521-3736
    Yes, i'm on facebook clicky clicky.................

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    Re: Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    Most of the CAD applications have their own tutorials included as part of the software install. That should get you the basics. Sounds like there are a few sources for video's to carry you even further. SolidWorks is more prevelant than AutoCAD Inventor which might give you an advantage when transferring data between CAD systems. I use IronCAD, the user interface is easier to drive tha both of those systems (IMHO), but its not well known. I helped build the company years ago, so I am a bit biased. Truth be told, if you spend enough time with any of them, they will do the job.
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    Re: Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    The Bob Ross of MBN Bullnerd's Avatar
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    "I'm on it over 16 hours some days and use it at least 5 hours a day, 7 days a week."

    I don't want to side track either but I gotta ask Yoshi...based on this comment and some others in recent posts...are you running another business that we don't know about(which is fine)or are you redesigning/modeling your standard line of cars? That's a ton of design and plasma time(from other posts) yet I don't see anything new on your site? Not bashing, just curious.
    "Speed is time-time is speed"-Dennis Hopper

    Quote Originally Posted by TALON View Post
    did you use a special bigfoot camera or something ,you know all blurry could be a tree stump kinda thing .
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    Re: Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    Senior Member darwinpayne2000's Avatar
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    Someone linked to an article a few months back where they were discussing the Smartcar and how people were putting high performance motorcycle engines in them. The engine required a major suspension upgrade to handle the performance. Yoshi was the main guy quoted in the article and he discussed how popular the upgrades were and how it was starting to eclipse his buggy building business.

    If that's what he's working on these days, then I hope he's making a pile of money from it.
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    Re: Inventor vs Solidworks or something else?
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    The Bob Ross of MBN Bullnerd's Avatar
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    So he'll be changing the name to Sinister Smart Cars?
    "Speed is time-time is speed"-Dennis Hopper

    Quote Originally Posted by TALON View Post
    did you use a special bigfoot camera or something ,you know all blurry could be a tree stump kinda thing .
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