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Dirty Water
11-24-2006, 08:07 PM
I'm doing a couple as builts over the weekend, and I'm using a free program called CadStd that is pretty lacking in features.

Since we only do a few of these a year, I'm not going to drop a grand for raincad.

Does anyone know of any free programs that can export autocad files (or even better, PDF's?)

PurpHaze
11-25-2006, 12:10 AM
PDF995 is a PDF "printer" driver. It's free (with a nag screen). You just open the File/Print and then change the "printer" to the pdf995 instead of your default printer and it will convert any file to PDF. Then save the PDF file (when the save screen comes up) and you can send it anywhere you want or print it out. Looks exactly the same as your cad file. It doesn't affect your original file at all.

http://www.pdf995.com/

Here's a CAD file I did up on our 1/2" swing joints. It's been converted to PDF.

Dirty Water
11-25-2006, 12:43 AM
Converting to PDF isn't the big issue, its the actual design software I'd like.

I just looked at your CAD, aren't you the artsy type, makes my as-built look pretty bad :)

LindblomRJ
11-25-2006, 06:53 AM
How about googles sketch up?

YardPro
11-25-2006, 07:59 AM
you can buy autocad LT for pretty cheap. I have seen it in staples for less than $200.00.
It will do way more than you ever wanted. I use full autocad 2004 for all my desigh work. It is a great estimating tool also.

Flow Control
11-25-2006, 08:36 AM
Check out ebay every now and then, I got my raincad for less then 250 and it was less then a year old.

PurpHaze
11-25-2006, 11:02 AM
What version did you get? I know the newer versions of RainCAD have machine codes and security codes built in so you have to go through Software Republic to register and get the codes in order for it to work. The unique thing is that if you need support from them they already know what machine it's running on, what version, whether it's the solo program or the suite that also includes the landscaping program and Irricalc, etc. Their service is superior and you can ask them anything about the programs.

PurpHaze
11-25-2006, 11:08 AM
Converting to PDF isn't the big issue, its the actual design software I'd like.

Sorry Jon... Thought you already had a freebee mini-CAD program and were just looking to convert those designs to PDF.

I just looked at your CAD, aren't you the artsy type, makes my as-built look pretty bad :)

That's just one of about thirty "installation detail" drawings that go with the written specification pages. Some people can't read English so we're hoping pictures will be more their comprehension level. :)

My designs sometimes get carried away too. I always show buildings and hardscaped areas and putting the final hatching into these things really dresses up a design drawing.:laugh:

Dirty Water
11-25-2006, 11:22 AM
Sorry Jon... Thought you already had a freebee mini-CAD program and were just looking to convert those designs to PDF.

I do but its horrible.

YardPro
11-25-2006, 07:52 PM
look at staples for autocad LT.

it does not have all the 3-D modeling that full autocad has, but i have NEVER used the 3-d part of mine.

Dirt Boy
11-25-2006, 08:59 PM
You may also want to download a program called DWGeditor from Solidworks.com.
It's free, it can open up Acad drawings, etc. Don't know about PDF output.

PurpHaze
11-26-2006, 08:24 PM
My son sent me a picture of the front of his house after he'd removed a Liquidambar and a Chinese Tallow tree (took him two days). It opens up the whole front now. He chided me that my drawing of his property was now incorrect. I pulled up the plot plan, removed the two trees and their common/botanical names and sent it off to him again all in about 30 seconds. :laugh:

Mr. Vern
11-26-2006, 08:33 PM
Well Jon - not sure anyone solved your problem, but at least that drawing answers the question we had the other day about just who it was that's using the scd 80 extensions on their swing joints.

PurpHaze
11-26-2006, 09:49 PM
Jon breathes a little too much fresh air up there in WA and sometimes it affects his memory.:)

Mr. Vern
11-27-2006, 12:48 AM
We had a thread going on plowing pipe and he mentioned that he thought I was using schedule 80 in my swing joints. I reminded him that I use funny pipe and that I thought it had been you that was using schedule 80. I just found it funny that your CAD file on a totally different thread answered the question definitively.

PurpHaze
11-27-2006, 08:01 AM
lol... I see what you mean. It's the only thing we use. :)

ChadsLawn
11-27-2006, 10:54 AM
Like the other guy said, Google Skethup is free and easy to use. It has some flash video trainning also.

telcomac
11-27-2006, 12:41 PM
I use a program called Visio to do my "as built" presentations.