Hey guys, how do people make nice plans drawn on the computer? What program(s) can I use to make plans like FliteTest or other users do? It'd be nice if there was a free program out there that I could use!
There are some free image programs out there, but you don't really want an image program for designing.
Adobe Illustrator is a good program, but $200. If you are a student you may be able to get a discount on the price for getting the Student version (limits you to not useing the program to make money from what you create. how they track that, I dont know).
If you are useing Mac, there is CADintosh, a $35 CAD program. I use CADintosh for all my plans, but am looking at getting a newer version of illustrator.
i totally forgot about Sketchup. You want one of the older versions though. RCG has a good walkthrough on how to use it, and even a link to the older version thats beter for plan making and the plugin that lets you "unfold" a modle into plans
Please note though, that if you have experiance with other 3D programs or CAD, the learning curve will be a bit harder since its so unlike other programs. I cant use Sketchup because of my past experiance with 3d programs and CAD. Just cant get my head around it
I have used Sketchup before but only briefly. I didn't think of that so I might give that a try! And I have used AutoCAD LT 2006 quite a bit in school but I won't have access to that after I graduate in a few weeks
You know, I tried inkscape but I did not like the interface. Hard to beat the price but to make a 3D model and interpolate ribs and formers its harder to beat sketchup. Many plugins will take your 3D model and slice it up and put it on a plane for you. If you want a DXF to CNC or laser cut your parts its a plugin and export away. I've also used Sketchup in conjunction with my wife's SilhouetteSD to cut parts or graphics.