Weird question, but what's the advantage?

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Weird question, but what's the advantage?

Postby heviarti » Wed Jan 22, 2014 9:26 pm

Everyone has been telling me I need CAD software. I run Linux on all of my computers, and have since 1997, so I opted to try Qcad. I am curious what the advantage of doing this with software might be. I tried to make a quick drawing of something I had rattling around in my head (a pretty easy part). So, having managed to make two concentric circles, I decided to look for an erase tool. After three hours of looking for a way to erase, I gave up. I couldn't even get it to stop making circles. So, if it takes three hours of searching to fail to find a tool that is one of the most basic things, how does this improve on a pencil, paper and an eraser? It would take me five seconds to erase a mark on paper. I don't see an advantage. What do you see as an advantage?
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Re: Weird question, but what's the advantage?

Postby andrew » Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:27 pm

heviarti wrote:So, having managed to make two concentric circles, I decided to look for an erase tool.


1. Click an entity to select it.
2. Press the delete key.

heviarti wrote:After three hours of looking for a way to erase, I gave up. I couldn't even get it to stop making circles.


Right-click or Escape key.

heviarti wrote:So, if it takes three hours of searching to fail to find a tool that is one of the most basic things, how does this improve on a pencil, paper and an eraser? It would take me five seconds to erase a mark on paper. I don't see an advantage. What do you see as an advantage?


This is a question that often comes up. So often, that it has been answered by many before me. I suggest, if I may, to google for "the advantage of using cad".
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Re: Weird question, but what's the advantage?

Postby J-J » Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:36 pm

Hello heviarti, welcome to the forum

After three hours of looking for a way to erase, I gave up.
...as fast as "select" and "delete", with no eraser chips to clean either!

I have drawn on a table with pencils and eraser for a lot of years, when I decided to move to CAD, I did not see myself investing months of training to master a complex software package, but I found QCAD and we fell in love. I agree that you do have to invest a bit of time to get going. The program is so intuitive once you have started, that after a short while you learn while you do your projects.
Now, my drafting table is wrapped up, and I would not even consider starting any project other than a quick hand free sketch without QCAD

Take the book and follow it, you will love the efficiency and precision you can achieve with QCAD. Work on a large screen (26 +), not a laptop, two screens are even better!

Good luck
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Re: Weird question, but what's the advantage?

Postby Clive » Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:50 pm

Hi heviarti,
J-J is absolutely right here, once you get your head around things - you'll wish you would have tried it sooner. I remember years ago drafting things out on a board and using drawing instruments...and it has to be said that nothing beats the feeling of using your hands in this way to accomplish a technical drawing, so I think there are quite a lot of us 'older' users who can acknowledge what you are saying here. My suggestion would be to keep an open mind about using QCAD and try not to get too frustrated in the early stages but instead see it as just a different way of doing things.
You know, you have an advantage over many people who start out drafting only having used a CAD program because you can use all of that knowledge that you gain from manual drafting and apply it to your thinking when using a 'computer' based CAD program.
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Re: Weird question, but what's the advantage?

Postby heviarti » Thu Jan 23, 2014 2:15 am

I guess one of the things I have learned to do is crossing from side to side of a circle to mark a series of straight lines inside a circle for crenelations or to make a flat on a cam or collar, I then erase the remaining part of the circle or the portions of the line that are unnecessary. I can't seem to select anything other than a whole line for deletion. Am I the only one that does this?

How is this precise? Can you tell it to represent a 1.625 (for example) bore at 3x scale? If you can do that without endless trips through dialogs, it may have some value. Will it plot out the mystery dimension if all other dimensions are present?
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Re: Weird question, but what's the advantage?

Postby J-J » Thu Jan 23, 2014 7:33 am

If you can do that without endless trips through dialogs, it may have some value.


you can do all that plus much, much more, but, READ Andrew's book, you will be surprised how easy it all goes together, http://www.qcad.org/en/qcad-book
All your questions will find an answer.
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