Anyone use AutoCAD 2020?

Discussion in 'General' started by acorn27, Mar 26, 2020.

  1. acorn27

    acorn27 4 out of 3 people in the world struggle with math

    For about 5 months I've been working with a small electrical engineering group (4-6 guys) that does industrial automation, PLC programming & upgrades, electrical panel building, vision, some robotics, etc. We also do a very small amount of basic mechanical design work to support some special projects. But the mechanical portion is very small compared to the electrical work and is typically only one of the guys.

    They have been using AutoCAD LT and Draftsight to do all the schematics and panel layouts, strictly a basic 2D electronic drawing board. One guy has a personal license of Solidworks for the mechanical modeling.

    We looked at some other options and are likely going to AutoCAD 2020 full version. It comes with the Electrical toolset, Mechanical Toolset (including solid modeling), and a few other toolsets.

    The electrical toolset provides some functions that should really speed up the electrical work, including symbol libraries, I/O numbering, etc. It also takes away a lot of the manual 2D CAD labor for schematics. The mechanical solid modeling looks decent too, at least for basic structural parts.

    As any wise person should do, run it by the BEEB think tank before making a decision. Anyone have any experience or advice to share?
  2. opinion914

    opinion914 Well-Known Member

    There is a hidden challange; We've been using AutocadArchitecture in our design firm and it has all the bells and whistles to speed up the process. Symbol libraries, 3-D potential, automatic Sections and Elevations, automatic schedules, etc. Great tools. The challange is getting the draftsmen to actually utilize these features. Hell, getting myself to exploit the program had been a challange.
    Think your team is willing to retool their habits? Would be a shame to pony up for the top-shelf package if only LT levels are being used..
  3. acorn27

    acorn27 4 out of 3 people in the world struggle with math

    That is a great point and it's something I've discussed with the guys. I do fear a couple of them will still tend use it like LT, so I'll have to work to show and train on how the tools can save time and reduce errors. These guys work in adapting new tech, so I know they are open to new things.
  4. Rhino48

    Rhino48 Well-Known Member

    What he says. AutoCAD is powerful, and flexible, but takes an intellectual and time investment to get the most of. All of these systems require a sort of autistic almost gamer like mentality to dig into and build work processes around the built in tools. While lots of those guys are out there, it's hard to find any interested in your niche at the time you need them. Then, ususally by the time you get one or two guys proficient, they'll drop the next product i mean improvement and it bends your curve again. And that's if your guys didn't quit because "I can't believe I've done this 3 years and I'm not a department manager yet."

    We're seeing this with the push for BIM and notably Revit lately. Guys can make the plans look like they were fully done with all the proper tools, but then you find out they are shortcutting a lot of the actual model integration, and then half the functionality is wasted. In that case you don't know until it's too late, usually.

    So, that said - I don't know anything about PCB design. I'm sure AutoCAD with the right overlay is amazing at it. Modeling - last I used it it was ok, but lacking in comparison to Inventor, Solidworks, etc. But if all else fails, you fall back to your bootleg version of Solidworks. :)
  5. CRA_Fizzer

    CRA_Fizzer Honking at putter!

    Do it. It's all we use for panel drawings.
    The wire number feature is very nice.
  6. quikie

    quikie Fugitive at Large

    I know SolidWorks has an electrical design component. I use use it for part and assembly design and am a big fan but haven't really checked out the electrical portion.

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