Hopefully this is the right place for this as I could see it going in General too. Question #2 below is the most directly related to Skill Share.
I’m not a scientist, but I’m here on the GOSH forum because I contribute to open source CAD, and am interested in CAD as it relates to (and enables) open hardware projects. I’m interested to hear from the GOSH community on two main questions about open source CAD, although discussion may reveal others that need to be asked.
- Does open source CAD currently work for you, or are you forced to use other solutions like Fusion 360? If open source CAD does not work for you, why not?
- Are there open science projects that need CAD help from time to time? If so, how do I find out about these needs? We have members of the CadQuery community who are periodically looking for things to make and contribute to. There are no guarantees, but if there is a way to discover projects that need help with CAD, my thought is those needs can be forwarded to the open source CAD community (or at least my corner of it).
Please let me know your thoughts.
Some additional context: Two of the most directly relevant projects I contribute to are CadQuery and Semblage. CadQuery is a Python based CAD scripting API, which is parametric at its core. What this means is that you create a Python script to generate a CAD model, and it has settings that can be changed to alter the dimensions of that model. You could have a sensor box that has the parameters of “sensor_length” and “sensor_diameter” that change the dimensions of the box to fit a sensor. In this way you create one CAD model for a whole family of sensors, rather than creating a model for each sensor. Semblage is a newer CAD project I have started which is currently in rough alpha condition (not recommended for anything but technology preview). The goal of that project is to merge the mouse-driven and programmatic CAD worlds so that users get something akin to FreeCAD or Fusion360, with the power of programmatic CAD being accessible just below the surface.