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What does FT use to create its plane plans?

#1
Sorry if this has been covered before, but I can't find what I'm looking for.

What does FT use to create its plans? I've been experimenting with Sketchup Pro and have created a set of plans. Knowing what lines to cut and what lines to crease, the plane will go together fine...but there are a lot of lines and they currently are not coded or labeled.

Sketchup has worked well, but I can't seem to change line colors. From what I have read about Sketchup, lines are not really lines, but edges. You can change edge colors if you set line color to be 'set by material'. This does not work for individual lines. How do you set cut, fold, and glue lines to different colors? Should I use a different program?

Also, what about printing to scale? I can export to PDF but it seems to add a very large margins to the plans. my foam board is 40"x32" and so should be my plans, but the PDF plans came out 88"x44". First I created a box that is 40x32 and then placed the individual pieces onto it. I've printed onto a single sheet of paper and cut out the pieces and they fold up correctly.

Lastly, how do you add text to the plans? I would like to add model name and directions onto the plans. The text I have been able to add seems to scale erratically.

So, does FT use Sketchup, or something else. If anyone is creating plans similar to FT plans and you have figured out how to do what I'm asking...I would appreciate your help.
 

pressalltheknobs

Posted a thousand or more times
#5
Josh Bixler designed most of the FT planes and he uses Corel Draw apparently. Not sure how they translate that to the Laser cutter control files but maybe there's a clever print driver.
 
#6
I've been going through Jason's videos. I found them when I began this project. They have been a big help. I never would have gotten this far without them.

I guess I'll have to watch the rest of them. I was hoping that either one of the FT guys, or someone using Sketch up would know.
 

Kurt0326

Your ADD Care Bear
Mentor
#7
I've been going through Jason's videos. I found them when I began this project. They have been a big help. I never would have gotten this far without them.

I guess I'll have to watch the rest of them. I was hoping that either one of the FT guys, or someone using Sketch up would know.
I've been working with the program for a while now, I could answer some questions. The hydroplane in my signature is a Scetchup if you want to look at it.
 
#8
Kurt,

That boat/plane is so cool. Your Sketchup drawings are real nice. How did you make the esc, receiver, servos, and battery? Real nice.

I can't look at the plans in your Dropbox because I am currently using my android. I will have a look tomorrow.
 

RAM

Posted a thousand or more times
#10
I've been working with the program for a while now, I could answer some questions. The hydroplane in my signature is a Scetchup if you want to look at it.
wow, how did I miss that post. Time for you to update it. Has it flown yet?
 
#11
pressalltheknobs said:
Josh Bixler designed most of the FT planes and he uses Corel Draw apparently. Not sure how they translate that to the Laser cutter control files but maybe there's a clever print driver.
Most laser cutters accept simple vector graphics files (or pdfs containing said vectors) with the line widths set to "hair line" to cut stuff.
In most cases it's even possible to manipulate laser power, cutting speed and pulse frequency of the laser depending on the color of your lines through the printer driver.
Corel Draw is simply one of many vector-able drawing programs.

My local fablab got me into inkscape

It's a free, open source program that allows for vector manipulation.
You can directly open the pdfs supplied by flite test if you want to shuffle bits around (Well, that one guy at the fablab could. Looked so easy when he did it, too) to better fit the laser cutter you might have access to...

I've hardly scratched the surface on what this tool can do, but I'm impressed already. They also have a great community section with lots of tutorials.
 
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Kurt0326

Your ADD Care Bear
Mentor
#12
wow, how did I miss that post. Time for you to update it. Has it flown yet?
The answer is no not yet, I hadn't had time to work in it. The real problem is making it repeatable. And I still have short falls. I did post a link for the scetchup file in that thread if you want to pay with it.
 

RepRapper

Old Time RC'er
#13
Corel Draw seems to be the preferred program to use with laser cutters. I know mine pretty much forces you to use it. I draw in freecad and then have to port it to Corel Draw to cut it. As far as colors are concerned a lot of Draftsmen use different colors for drawing layers in CAD. So one layer would be the cut layer, and the rest would be print or fold layers. Just gussing but that is how I would do it.