Welcome to 3DCADForums

Join our CAD community forums where over 25,000 users interact to solve day to day problems and share ideas. We encourage you to visit, invite you to participate and look forward to your input and opinions. Acrobat 3D, AutoCAD, Catia, Inventor, IronCAD, Creo, Pro/ENGINEER, Solid Edge, SolidWorks, and others.

Register Log in

Need open source or low cost CAD recommendations


New member
Hello all!

I'm starting a new venture with some acquaintances for which I will be doing mechanical design, and am looking at my options for a CAD package. Unfortunately, we can't justify the price of a seat of any of the big name CAD softwares at this point. As you imagine, I've come across quite a few alternatives that are free or low cost. To date, I've tried a BricsCAD, TurboCAD and FreeCAD. I haven't had enough time to fully evaluate those yet, but have already come across some rather annoying bugginess in FreeCAD which makes me shy away from using it (perhaps an incorrect assessment).

That said, I wonder if some of you folks with experience using some of the multitude of free or low cost CAD options out there might be able to pitch in your two cents on what your choice would be if you were in my position. It may be relevant to note that I use ProE/Creo at work, though it seems like I'm much more likely to find something with workflow similar to AutoCAD than ProE.