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Thread: Web based Sketchup? Alternatives?

  1. #1
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    Web based Sketchup? Alternatives?

    My old computer died and along with it went my version of downloaded Sketchup. On my new computer this morning, I tried the web based version of Sketchup free and it was absolutely terrible. It took me 5 minutes to draw a line. The UI is terrible - I couldnít believe how few buttons there were and no options to add more like in the old downloaded versions. How on earth do they think itís a good idea to lump together commands like the circle tool, rectangular, etc into one button, then after clicking on it having to find the command you want. Not at all happy with it.

    I read in a thread here from earlier in the year that one used to be able to download Make, but thatís apparently be done away with in place of the Shop version which requires a fee of $119 a year I believe.

    Am i correct in that most all the other modeling software has a free trial period and then a fee is required to keep using it? I donít want to spend the time figuring out how to use something then have to pay for it.

    An understand these companies need to make money but Iím a little POíed that after years and years of free Sketchup theyíre now charging. $119/year is not in my shop budget.

    I tried reaching out to Dave Richards whom Iíve talked Sketchup with before but he seems to have vanished?

    Surely not everyone who uses free Sketchup is no paying? What free programs are people using? Or is there more to Sketchup Free that Iím missing?

  2. #2
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    Apr 2013
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    Not a fan of any online software I've tried. When I lose the Sketchup that I have, I'll find something else. Free is good, but I don't mind paying. It won't be a subscription though. I don't do subscription software.

  3. #3
    I quit Sketchup because of that. Same here looking for another option but in no rush.

  4. #4
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    It looks like they are all going to the annual subscription model. If you could find someone with an older free version who still has the install files on their computer, you could probably get a copy of these files and install onto your computer. It looks like the oldest version available on their website is 2017.

    I ran across this on Ebay (see link). This seller is apparently offering a lifetime subscription license for Sketchup Pro 2019, and has sold over 100 with great reviews. I assume that one would download the trial version of Sketchup from the Trimble website, then once installed and running on the computer one would install this license code to permanently activate the Sketchup program. But if you don't like all the "improvements" they have made over the last few versions, then this might not be for you anyway.

    David

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Sketchup-Pr...IAAOSwlf5dS~gJ
    Last edited by David Buchhauser; 11-22-2019 at 1:43 AM.

  5. #5
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    I have a perpetual license to Sketchup Pro 2016 but am switching to Fusion 360. I prefer the parametric modeling approach but there is a learning curve to go through. Fusion 360 is free for now for Hobbyist use. I wouldn't mind paying for it but don't like subscription models.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Funk View Post
    I have a perpetual license to Sketchup Pro 2016 but am switching to Fusion 360. I prefer the parametric modeling approach but there is a learning curve to go through. Fusion 360 is free for now for Hobbyist use. I wouldn't mind paying for it but don't like subscription models.
    Hi Greg,
    If you sign up for Fusion 360 for "student" use, they will give you a 3 year free trial. If you sign up for personal hobby use, they offer a 1 year free trial. After that, they want $495 per year. I have been using Fusion 360 (very occasionally) for the last 2 years under their "free for startups under $100K income" category, but they have recently discontinued that category. So I recently changed my account to the student version. All the features are basically the same as they were. I would be happy to pay for the program if it were not a subscription model. I would probably even be willing to pay a subscription fee if it was a more reasonable annual fee - like maybe $150 per year for hobby use.
    David

  7. #7
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    If
    Quote Originally Posted by David Buchhauser View Post
    Hi Greg,
    If you sign up for Fusion 360 for "student" use, they will give you a 3 year free trial. If you sign up for personal hobby use, they offer a 1 year free trial. After that, they want $495 per year. I have been using Fusion 360 (very occasionally) for the last 2 years under their "free for startups under $100K income" category, but they have recently discontinued that category. So I recently changed my account to the student version. All the features are basically the same as they were. I would be happy to pay for the program if it were not a subscription model. I would probably even be willing to pay a subscription fee if it was a more reasonable annual fee - like maybe $150 per year for hobby use.
    David
    I’m using the personal use only license. It’s not a trial and there’s no mention of switching to a paid plan. I doubt they’d convert many occasional use hobbyists to a 495/yr plan. It’s not worth it for documenting the odd project.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Day View Post
    I read in a thread here from earlier in the year that one used to be able to download Make, but that’s apparently be done away with in place of the Shop version which requires a fee of $119 a year I believe.
    Is this what you're looking for:

    Downloading Older Versions

    The Make 2017 version is still available for Windows and Mac.

  9. #9
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    I was recently in the same situation and lost access to Sketchup Make 2016 when my PC died. I thought I could simply take the hard drive out and access files on it from my new PC however when I tried launching Sketchup 2016, I received an "expired license" message and never got any further. I also had Sketchup Make 2017 on that drive, but I've always had a bug with that version where the active file would just shutdown and disappear and I'd lose all of my work so I stayed with 2016 which was reliable.

    I decided to change to Fusion 360 with the free license for individual non-commercial use since I'm just a hobbiest. I really liked the parametric modelling capabilities and animation capabilities, but about half way through the training course I was concerned about their license terms changing. Since the Fusion 360 learning curve requires a considerable investment of time, I chose not to continue.

    Most recently I downloaded the last free version of Sketchup Make 2017, but immediately after doing that, I had the same problem with a file closing and losing my work that I had on my old PC. So now I feel stuck. I can't justify the cost for pro license of either platform, and the new online Sketchup is absolutely awful. I guess all good things must come to an end.
    Dick Mahany.

  10. #10
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    Sep 2019
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    Aurora, IL
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    Fusion 360 is pretty nice and being free helps. I find it generally easy to use (disclaimer I do a lot of parametric modeling at work) It generally works quite well for me but I keep running into odd bugs. It has a reasonably simple UI, but still can do more exciting things if you dig deeper into the program.

    Parametric modeling is great but there is a learning curve. Being careful in design gives you lots of flexibility for making small changes quickly and seeing how they will affect your final result. You can of course use it in a less parametric fashion, but being able to drive entire models from one or two dimensions is a lot of fun, at least I think so...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Cooper2 View Post
    Fusion 360 is pretty nice and being free helps. I find it generally easy to use (disclaimer I do a lot of parametric modeling at work) It generally works quite well for me but I keep running into odd bugs. It has a reasonably simple UI, but still can do more exciting things if you dig deeper into the program.

    Parametric modeling is great but there is a learning curve. Being careful in design gives you lots of flexibility for making small changes quickly and seeing how they will affect your final result. You can of course use it in a less parametric fashion, but being able to drive entire models from one or two dimensions is a lot of fun, at least I think so...
    I agree. It took me a few days but I now have a basic cabinet design with raised panel doors and a face frame that I can simply modify with two parameters, width and height, and everything in the model adjusts appropriately. I even animated the door openings although not sure that has any practical value for me other than entertainment.

  12. #12
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    I went ahead and DLíed Make 2017. Seems to be exactly what Iím used to so Iíll use it as long as I can. SO much better than the web version of Free.

  13. #13
    Join Date
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    Seattle, WA
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    Fusion360 has changed their subscription model a few times, but as of right now it's 100% free for personal/hobby use. They have limits on using it for income, but anybody worried about the price shouldn't care about that.

    The great thing about Fusion360 is that it's a real parametric CAD program with the capability to make tool paths in 2D, 3D and 4D. If you have any inkling at all of getting a CNC or carving setup, Fusion360 will support it right out of the box. It's a super powerful piece of software.

    The learning curve for Fusion360 is a bit higher than Sketchup, but IMO it's 100% worth it. If you look on youtube they have excellent how-to guides from Lars Christian. You'll be up and running in no time. As a bonus you get free cloud storage of your CAD files with an online viewer. Want to show somebody your project from a work computer without Fusion? No problem. Want to design on one box and have a second computer in your shop to read dimensions off of? Sure - works seamlessly. Even on the free version.

  14. #14
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    Here is the Autodesk page covering the "free for hobbyists" terms. It looks like it is still free for personal use. Apparently the free 1 year trial is for professional users. I had previously misunderstood the terms of their offerings.
    David


    https://www.autodesk.com/campaigns/fusion-360-for-hobbyists

    Fusion 360 free for hobbyists.jpg

  15. #15
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    SketchList might be an option. I downloaded the 30-day trial, tested it out, and got excellent support from the company to help me use it. I haven't decided yet whether to buy it or not. After a couple of weeks learning curve, it appears to be a viable option for drawing basic 3D cabinets, drawers, etc. When it comes to curves, etc., they can be drawn but it's seems to be a little less capable than SketchUp.

    After the 30-day trial SketchList is $200 but it resides on your computer and no annual fees. You can buy it through Rockler or on the SketchList website; same price.

    Also, if you don't need a 3D program, try DeltaCad. It's cheap, extremely easy to use, but it's 2D. For simple projects it's great. Just means you need to draw all views separately (like we used to).

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