This is a list of free and open source 3D CAD (computer-aided design) software packages. More precisely MCAD (Mechanical computer-aided design) software.

 

- FreeCAD

- About FreeCAD

FreeCAD is a general purpose parametric 3D CAD modeler, whose development is completely open source (LGPL License). FreeCAD is aimed directly at mechanical engineering and product design but also fits in a wider range of uses around engineering, such as architecture, finite element analysis, 3D printing, and other tasks.

FreeCAD features tools similar to Catia, SolidWorks or Solid Edge, and therefore also falls into the category of MCAD, PLM, CAx and CAE. It is a feature based parametric modeler with a modular software architecture which makes it possible to provide additional functionality without modifying the core system.

FreeCAD is also multi-platform, and currently runs on Linux/Unix, Windows, and Mac OSX systems with the same look and functionality on all platforms.

FreeCAD is maintained and developed by a community of enthusiastic developers and users (see the contributors page). They work on FreeCAD voluntarily, in their free time. They cannot guarantee that FreeCAD contains everything you might wish, but they will do their best! The community gathers on the FreeCAD forum, where most of the ideas and decisions are discussed. Feel free to join us there!

 

- Salome Shaper

SHAPER is a parametric and variational CAD modeler. It offers improved ergonomics that are best suited for the drawing  from  the  graphical  interface. The variational aspect allows the user to draw interactively a sketch with dimensions and constraints, just what he sees on a technical drawing. The parametric aspect ensures that the final shapes are automatically updated when a parameter of a CAD feature is modified. It also allows simple assembly of 3D parts. 

Create, modify, import and export (IGES, STEP, BREP, ...), repair and clean CAD models.

SHAPER module of SALOME is destined for:

  • import and export of geometrical models in IGES, BREP, STEP and XAO formats;
  • parametric construction of geometrical objects using a wide range of functions:
  • viewing geometrical objects in the OCC viewer;
  • transformation of geometrical objects using various algorithms.

 

- BRL-CAD

BRL-CAD is a constructive solid geometry (CSG) solid modeling computer-aided design (CAD) system. It includes an interactive geometry editor, ray tracing support for graphics rendering and geometric analysis, computer network distributed framebuffer support, scripting, image-processing and signal-processing tools. The entire package is distributed in source code and binary form.

Although BRL-CAD can be used for a variety of engineering and graphics applications, the package's primary purpose continues to be the support of ballistic and electromagnetic analyses. In keeping with the Unix philosophy of developing independent tools to perform single, specific tasks and then linking the tools together in a package, BRL-CAD is basically a collection of libraries, tools, and utilities that work together to create, raytrace, and interrogate geometry and manipulate files and data. In contrast to many other 3D modelling applications, BRL-CAD primarily uses CSG rather than boundary representation.[2] This means BRL-CAD can "study physical phenomena such as ballistic penetration and thermal, radiative, neutron, and other types of transport". [3] It does also support boundary representation.[4]

The BRL-CAD libraries are designed primarily for the geometric modeler who also wants to tinker with software and design custom tools. Each library is designed for a specific purpose: creating, editing, and ray tracing geometry, and image handling. The application side of BRL-CAD also offers a number of tools and utilities that are primarily concerned with geometric conversion, interrogation, image format conversion, and command-line-oriented image manipulation.

 

- OpenJSCAD

JSCAD (formally know as OpenJSCAD) provides a programmer’s approach to develop 3D models. In particular, this functionality is tuned towards creating precise models for 3D printing.

JSCAD provides:

  • ability to create and manipulate 3D models, as well as 2D models
  • ability to use JavaScript programming concepts, and libraries
  • ability to save 3D models as STL (and other) formats

 

- NaroCAD

The goal of this project is to develop a fully fledged and extensible 3D CAD software based on the concept of parametric modeling of solids, comparable to well known solutions.

 

- OpensCAD

OpenSCAD is software for creating solid 3D CAD models. It is free software and available for Linux/UNIX, Windows and Mac OS X. Unlike most free software for creating 3D models (such as Blender) it does not focus on the artistic aspects of 3D modelling but instead on the CAD aspects. Thus it might be the application you are looking for when you are planning to create 3D models of machine parts but pretty sure is not what you are looking for when you are more interested in creating computer-animated movies.

OpenSCAD is not an interactive modeller. Instead it is something like a 3D-compiler that reads in a script file that describes the object and renders the 3D model from this script file. This gives you (the designer) full control over the modelling process and enables you to easily change any step in the modelling process or make designs that are defined by configurable parameters.

OpenSCAD provides two main modelling techniques: First there is constructive solid geometry (aka CSG) and second there is extrusion of 2D outlines. Autocad DXF files can be used as the data exchange format for such 2D outlines. In addition to 2D paths for extrusion it is also possible to read design parameters from DXF files. Besides DXF files OpenSCAD can read and create 3D models in the STL and OFF file formats.

 

- SolveSpace

Solvespace is a free (GPLv3) parametric 3d CAD tool.

Applications include:

  • modeling 3d parts — draw with extrudes, revolves, and Boolean (union / difference) operations
  • modeling 2d parts — draw the part as a single section, and export DXF, PDF, SVG; use 3d assembly to verify fit
  • 3d-printed parts — export the STL or other triangle mesh expected by most 3d printers
  • preparing CAM data — export 2d vector art for a waterjet machine or laser cutter; or generate STEP or STL, for import into third-party CAM software for machining
  • mechanism design — use the constraint solver to simulate planar or spatial linkages, with pin, ball, or slide joints
  • plane and solid geometry — replace hand-solved trigonometry and spreadsheets with a live dimensioned drawing

 

- gCAD3D

3D CAD/CAM - software for MS-Windows and Linux. This program is free software (GPL-3); you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation.

 

- FlatFab

Flatfab is software that helps you design and fabricate 3D objects. We imagine in 3D but ideate and draw in 2D. flatfab seamlessly does both.

Flatfab marries digital modeling and traditional craftsmanship. 3D printing in new-age materials is great for small complex objects, but prohibitive in time and money for anything bigger than your fist. Flatfab enables designers and hobbyists to use their own skills working with common tools and materials, anything that is reasonably flat and can be cut: paper, plastic, wood, steel, even stone.

The flatfab way

  • Create your design fluidly, using connected planar parts
  • Print your design as 2D curves, ready to cut
  • Cut your design, with a digital cutter or by hand
  • Pack it flat, if you need to transport it
  • Assemble the parts together, there are no tools required!

 

- FREE!ship

FREE!ship is a surface modeling program for designing ships yachts and boats. Subdivision surfaces are used rather than NURBS to give the designer the freedom to design any desired hullshape. Unfold surfaces, panel based hydrostatics, various exp formats