Contentious statement....

Discussion in 'Software' started by wunwinglow, Feb 19, 2004.

  1. wunwinglow

    wunwinglow Active Member

    ...or try and avoid folds altogether. Nearly. This egg-crate construction is all slotted together, no glue at all yet. All the tweaks have been down to me not getting the geometry right in the first place, but the card thickness allowances all worked out fine.

  2. Maurice

    Maurice Member


    Two questions please.
    How would you rate DeltaCad for someone trying to get started in CAD ?
    How do you go about your unfolding ?

    and one for Tim
    Why do you tweak in Coreldraw rather than Rhino ?

  3. wunwinglow

    wunwinglow Active Member

    I use Rhino to do the basic 3D structure modelling and the unrollsrf operations, then copy all the pieces to a seperate layer, all orientated in the same plane. Export those as an .ai file into Coreldraw. This way I keep the pure 3D stuff in a 3D program, and the 'printed' imagery in a 2D output-orientated program. Opening up location slots to suit different paper thickness' is easy to do in Corel, and I have not damaged to original geometry in the Rhino file if I need it for something else; plastic card, or stereolithography, or rendering, or whatever. Also, all the colouring, outline parameters, labels, copies, mirrored items, instructions etc can be done in Coreldraw for export as a pdf. The tool sets in each program are better suited to those processes. Horses for courses, in other words. There is nothing to stop you doing it all in either, if you want!

  4. DeltaCAD is 2D. I use it for page layout, and flattening of simple to medium geometry. It is a very good piece of software, but needs drafting experience and geometry skills to create anything but simple models due to lack of 3D. Works better than any other low-end program I've tried and a good value at under $50USD. Professional tools comparable to "brandname" light-duty 2D programs. There is a demo on their website (

    I have CADVANCE6.5 registered ( but have yet to install and try it ^_^.

    For 3D meshes made in AutoCAD I use "Tailors" ( to unfold. A seemingly cumbersome method, but I like the exacting control it gives (unless someone knows how to get properly scaled and reliable DXF output from another unfolder?).
  5. Maurice

    Maurice Member

    Thanks both. Good food for thought.

  6. barry

    barry Active Member


    Maurice your right my geometry was never any good, but I fancied trying out a simple design. I read Tim's tutorial on Rhino and I almost understood it, and very kindly he sent me a couple of program freebies to try out.

    Unfortunately I have still been unable to get a bitmap background to start with. I saw that NOBI uses Metasequoia great, I will try that, trouble is you can't buy it unless you live in Japan, I can't afford Rhino or Autocad so I would appreciate some kind soul how knows what he is doing suggesting:-

    a.... a program you can actually buy for a reasonable price (less than £50 in my case)
    b.... how you can approximate to Tim's suggestions
    c.... maybe a few screen shots of how to do it.

    Even then I guess it will be too much for me to chew !!! so really don't break your balls doing it.

  7. Gil

    Gil Active Member


    Try looking at TurboCAD..., you can get version 7.0 for around $14.00 U.S. It allows you to draft in 2D and 3D and supports most of all popular input/output formats. I've been using TurboCAD for some time now and find it to be less phenomenal than say Rhino but it's great for many tasks which Rhino isn't.

    Best regards, Gil
  8. NOBI

    NOBI Active Member

    Hi there,

    many technician term and a lot of english sentence make me a little confuse :oops:

    yes, Barry...metaseq sell only in Japan. if u outside japan no way to purchase. metaseq unregister version can save in only .mqo format what can unfold in pepakura. metaseq not have a measurement for your 3dmodel to measure or for scale but it can tweak in coreldraw. metaseq have texture ability what can unfold in pepakura with texture. metaseq use friendly vertex's (or point's) control. u can modified each vertex (or point) easily.

    d/l metaseq and try...if u want to buy and u can not buy because u live outside japan please contact me. im not live in japan too but i can solve problem for u

    Tim, incredible frame's hull...i like that
  9. NOBI

    NOBI Active Member

    forgot to post a pic :wink:
  10. Maurice

    Maurice Member


    To some extent many of the 3D programmes have been developed for the "geometrically challenged" although there is still some need to be able to visualise the shape you want to construct.
    May I suggest a visit to
    to look at possibilities.
    Now I know that he found TurboCad too difficult and I suspect two things
    first that "The Haggard One" has no greater knowledge of geometry than yourself
    and secondly that since he is currently in Arizona he is using the more limited but freeware version of Metasequoia from
    The free version of Pepakura Designer from
    is more than adequate for practice and the full version is not too expensive.
    Rather than try to extract colouring from the 3D model whilst unfolding you might find it easier at first to put the unfolded patterns into an "art" graphics programme for colouring.

    And certainly do be encouraged by the wonders NOBI achieves with this combination.
    Being Thai he is gifted and inventive. :)


    (Oh and any damages caused by following these suggestions are deemed to be the result of your own stupidity for listening to me in the first place. :lol: )
  11. barry

    barry Active Member


    Thanks for all the information enough to keep me going for quite a while.


    I shall tread very carefully so as not to cause myself unecessary injury!!


    the great thing about the english language is that you can mangle it and it still makes sense, anyway my Thai is non existant so you are streets ahead of me.

    I was always the one at the back at school who asked dumb questions so here we go again. Do you guys use a mouse, a pencil mouse or an input tablet to enter curves etc. I ask cos it takes me all my time with a mouse to hit a particular point on the screen. :oops:

    Well we had DOS for Dummys did n't we

    Thanks all :D
  12. RyanShort1

    RyanShort1 Member


    I've been working (off and on - off right now until I finish some other unrelated projects) on a model of a Piper Tomahawk in TurboCad. If you have correct dimensions or an idea of what the dimensions should be, then it's a whole lot easier, otherwise, if you're just going "by mouse" it can be really tricky. Personally I prefer to start an entity with the mouse and then use the keyboard (typing in coordinates) from stuff I measure out, although I'm sure some other folks are better with the mouse than I am.

  13. NOBI

    NOBI Active Member

    Hi There,

    Thank you very much Barry, i think i must learn a lot in English, English is international language and everybody MUST understand eventhough he live in Uganda or Jamica :wink:

    for me i use both muse and keyboard for designing model, keyboard use for press shortcut to make my work fast. many people use something like pencil mouse or tablet to assist thier work but i never use it, i can not use it hehe but i think that will help work easy and fast.

    Ryan, sound great on Piper Tomahawk, u use turboCAD? i heard that new version of TurboCAD can handle 3Dmodel too...which version u work with? cant wait to see your work 8)
  14. wunwinglow

    wunwinglow Active Member

    I use mouse, Wacom Graphire pen tablet (brilliant!) and keyboard, but the most valuable thing I can suggest you practise is the use of the snap functions in you CAD program. Usually there are LOTS of options, snapping to a grid, other elements in your drawing, limiting lines along certain directions (ortho) and so on.

    Some CAD programs can 'read' a set of co-ordinates to create a shape, or indead a stream of instructions to do a whole bunch of stuff, all at the click of a mouse. This is usually called 'scripting', and is another aspect of using the software that is well worth learning something about.

    All CAD programs can work to levels of accuracy far, far beyond a mouse on its own.

  15. Maurice

    Maurice Member


    Yes TurboCad v7 was good and v8 is now very good at 3D.


    And of course you have your SEKE's fully set up and only ever use "circle centre and point" for setting and measuring distances. :)


    Just don't take it personally. Computers struggle to draw predictable curves with precision.
    There's nothing yet as sophisticated as the eyeball Mk I and a steady hand.

    (well himself did ask for controversy :twisted: )
  16. Darwin

    Darwin Member

    Back OT

    Returning to the original topic of this thread....bitmap vs vector. One thing to keep in mind is that we should consider our hard drive as being the box into which we store all the tools we use for our hobby. Anyone who has been at it for a while usually has accumulated a large and diverse range of tools. The thread was started with an opinion that, since Corel Draw was wonderful for drawing and Photoshop was crap for drawing, therefor vector based software is superior to bitmap based software. There is a huge flaw in that argument, for it is a comparison of apples and oranges. Continuing with the mechanics analogy, it is possible to drive a nail using a crescent wrench. However, just because a crescent wrench is a lousy hammer does not mean it is crap just was used for the wrong purpose, with predictable results re user satisfaction.

    Getting to a bit more basic philosophical level....there are two main genres of 2D graphics packages: drawing packages and image manipulation packages. Corel Draw is a drawing package, which incidently happens to include some image manipulation capability. Photoshop is an image manipulation package, which happens to have some drawing capability. If your intent is to create drawings, then Photoshop is inherently going to be a crap program. If your intent is to recolor an existing drawing, then Photoshop is an excellent tool.....and that value judgement has nothing whatever to do with whether the package is bitmap based or vector based.

    Each approach to drawing has strengths and weaknesses. My own viewpoint is that one can never have enough tools, and a complete toolbox will have both vector based and bitmap based graphics applications. As far as which is "best" for a particular individual may well lie with the specific individual's total life experience (enough buzz words for your yuppies in the group?). As an example, I harken back to an era when desiging was a 2D task. Thinking 3D is still foreign to my nature, and I have not worked with it enough to be comfortable, yet 2D is like putting on a favorite old pair of slippers. Extending one's desiging into the third dimension absolutely requires mathematically based groupings of lines. So, if your intent is to design in the virtual world (on the computer) rather than in the real world (large wastebaskets full of crumpled up paper), then you will consider the worst vector-based package as being superior to the best bitmap based package, and rightly so. My comfort being old-timey real world, I find bitmap based packages much more comfortable to use than vector based. Bottom line, the best package is the one most comfortable to you, and is a wholly relative concept.
  17. neoneanderthal

    neoneanderthal New Member

    .... (enough buzz words for your yuppies in the group?). ....

    i am not now nor have i ever been a member of the yuppies party

    ..... an in any case i refoose to come out from under the bed .... :lol:
  18. Maurice

    Maurice Member


    Sometimes a little work is needed.
    The "reliable" bit is just too true.
    Whilst 2D CAD is absolutely precise the third dimension involves so much complexity that current technology requires 3D CAD to introduce approximations. Even just extracting 3 views from 3D can produce hilarious and inaccurate results.
    Dr Zakov illustrates this, and the results of his solution, in his manual for SurfMaster.
    All the "programmettes" only deal with relatively simple development of single basic elements.
    Mind you I'm sure I asked Tim to let us know the output formats from his full copy of Pepakura.
    (must be too busy establishing that elephants can fly without using magic feathers :lol: )

  19. Extracting 3-views from 3D (watch the perspective settings)? I only do that for reference in the instructions. 3-views go into 3D to develop some parts. True that 3D is lower tolerance than 2D (especially when using Mesh software instead of CAD), but the only essential "approximations" I involve are with curves, in which the basic geometric forms are calculated in 2D not 'unfolded', and complex curves are arrayed facets averaged between buildable and smooth.
    When I use "projected" or "extracted" I don't mean "draw it the way it looks", I mean "mathematically interpret the actual face geometry and recreate it onto the XY plane".

    Of the few times I tried Tenkai, when I finally got a result into DXF (multiple conversions) analysis of it left me no trust in this method. I have yet to experience Tailors to provide a result that falls out of tolerance, as I calculate parts to the third decimal place.
    If Pepakura can output directly to DXF it might be useful, otherwise I might as well go back to my feel-good method; the fail-proof (unless you're unskilled) calculated manual draft projection.

    In my eschelons of process the final CAD result is in 2D, unfolded and projected parts are analyzed and revised against each other with a system of target characteristics. It's amateurish to call the unfolded output from a single program the final product. Once all the parts are Designed, then they are arranged onto set-scale sheets and exported for painting. A current model in design has been protobuilt, it had two errors among the 75 parts; I forgot gluetabs on the end of one curved part, and I didn't like how close a barrel rested to the edge in a turret.

    As I've repeated, methods can be exchanged, but each individual will need to interpret them into ways that work for them. My methods are mine, and do not seem to be of value to anyone here, so this will probably be my last post in this forum.
  20. wunwinglow

    wunwinglow Active Member

    Hi guys, sorry I've been at work, slaving away to keep my boss' new boat fueled and ready to go...

    Up the workers, I say.......

    I am still trying out Pepakura, but I get Rhino v3 in a few days, and this works much better than the previous version on unrolling surfaces, so I'll get back to you on this.

    Masamune, you are right that most of us develop our own ways of approaching things, dependent on what tools and software we have at hand, our 'life' experiences, our own appreciation of modelling and what we are prepared to put in, and expect back in return. I for one find your descriptions fascinating, so please don't hold back! I am listening, and am sure I'm not the only one! All contributions are valued, and I apologise if I appeared dismissive in a previous post; my intention was quite the opposite.

    Back soon, I gotta get some sleep!


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