CAD software refers to a type of software program used by engineers and designers to create 2D and 3D physical component models. These applications have an easy-to-use user interface, toolbars, and a large library of 3D models. Many tools also enable you to print on multiple pages.

Following is a handpicked list of Top Free CAD Software, with their popular features and website links. The list contains both open source (free) and commercial (paid) software.

Best Free CAD Software

Name OS Price Link
ZBrushCore Mac, Window Free Learn More
FreeCAD Windows, Mac, Linux Free Learn More
OpenSCAD Linux/UNIX, MS Windows, Mac OS X Free Learn More
QCAD Windows, Linux, Mac Free Learn More
LibreCAD Windows, Apple, Linux Free Learn More

1) ZBrushCore

ZBrushCore is free CAD program that offers a simple way to make 3D sculptures. This application is easy to learn for people having no experience. It has many brushes to make models.

Features:

  • Offers Tessellation (Covering surface with pattern).
  • Automatic UV (Ultraviolet light) Creation.
  • Easy to use toolbars to access frequently used tools.
  • You can optimize the brush the way you like.
  • It provides preloaded materials to design objects quickly.
  • This application has a symmetry mode that enables you to define an axis.

Link: https://zbrushcore.com/mini/


2) FreeCAD

FreeCAD is an open-source tool to design a real-life object of any size. This software allows you to modify your design easily. It enables you to effortlessly create 3D design from 2D.

Features:

  • Runs as a command-line application
  • Parametric associative document objects
  • This CAD program has built-in Python console
  • Graphical creation of planar geometry.
  • Fully customizable/scriptable graphical user interface

Link: https://www.freecadweb.org


3) Open SCAD

Open SCAD is a tool for creating solid three-dimensional objects. It is free and available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. This program enables you to quickly preview the parts of objects. You can use it to make a parametric design by changing the parameters of objects.

Features:

  • You can import and export the SVG, AMF, and 3MF files.
  • Offers easy to use GUI.
  • It provides CSG (Constructive solid geometry) geometry engine.
  • You can customize the software the way you want.
  • It can play sound notification on completing rendering.
  • Supports shortcuts.

Link: https://www.openscad.org/


4) QCAD

QCAD is an open-source application designed for CAD in two dimensions. It enables you to create technical drawings like building plans, mechanical parts, interiors, and diagrams.

Features:

  • It allows you to input and output DXF (Drawing Interchange File) and DWG (Drawing) files.
  • This CAD program includes more than 40 construction tools.
  • QCAD offers a library with more than 4800 CAD parts.
  • It provides easy to use JavaScript interface.
  • This application enables you to print on multiple pages.
  • Support for TrueType fonts.

Link: https://www.qcad.org/en/


5) LibreCAD

Liberated is a free CAD program for 2D design. It allows you to create a CAD project of a high standard. This tool includes a wide range of tools for drawing shapes like line and circle.

Features:

  • Developed by an experienced team and supported by a friendly community.
  • LibreCAD started as a project to build CAM capabilities.
  • This free cad software is available in more than 30 languages.
  • You can use it for creating 2D drawings.

Link: https://librecad.org/


6) BlocksCAD

BlocksCAD is a free CAD software that helps to make three-dimensional models that are appropriate for printing on a three-dimensional printer. This cloud-based tool allows users to learn the concept through visualizing and designing models.

Features:

  • Download files for a three-dimensional printer.
  • It enables you to create lessons.
  • This application allows you to edit your model in less effort.
  • It helps you to improve math and computer science skills.
  • You can manage the account with ease.

Link: https://www.blockscad3d.com/


7) Wings 3D

Wings 3D is a free CAD software for making three-dimensional design. You can use this application to move, scale, rotate, cut, and weld any object of your choice.

Features:

  • It provides a smooth preview of your design.
  • You can add texture to your model.
  • Wings 3D enables you to export any image for painting.
  • This tool enables you to customize your interface.
  • Supports hotkeys (shortcuts) for the ease of convenience.
  • You get a wide range of selection tools.
  • It contains a wide range of modeling tools.
  • Supported languages are English, Italian, French, Japanese, German, and many more.

Link: http://www.wings3d.com/


8) SketchUp Free

SketchUp Free is CAD software that enables you to make objects without any hassle. The tool comes with a 3D gallery that lets you search for models and share among other users. This application lets you visualize your ideas.

Features:

  • It helps you to customize the 3D workspace.
  • You can collaborate with other people.
  • This free cad program offers easy management of layers.
  • Google SketchUp helps you to set lightning effects.
  • Supports numerous plugins.

Link: https://www.sketchup.com/plans-and-pricing/sketchup-free


9) KiCAD

KiCAD is an open-source automation suite design for CAD. It has a symmetric editor that helps you to create any design without limit. This application allows you to make a PCB layout with up to 32 copper layers.

Features:

  • It has a 3D viewer that you can use to inspect your design on canvas.
  • The tool contains a large library of 3D models.
  • This free cad program allows you to modify the appearance of the board.
  • KiCAD enables you to quick start your design with a built-in schematic symbol editor.
  • This application supports a wide array of tools.

Link: https://www.kicad-pcb.org/


10) NanoCAD

NanoCAD is an easy-to-use CAD application that helps you deliver a great user experience by providing high performance, a classic interface, and a native. This engineering design tool has been built to deliver design and project documentation for all industries.

Features:

  • NanoCAD implements an efficient and easy to learn, classic-style CAD user interface.
  • It uses the industry-standard DWG (*.dwg) file format natively.
  • It includes an extensive set of tools for creating and editing 2D/3D objects.
  • The nanoCAD scripting engine helps you to automate everyday routine tasks.
  • The tool also offers plot settings dialog that allows you to set multiple plot areas and create multi-page plots.
  • Reduce eye strain with contrast improvement
  • Allows you to display all nearby measurements in a drawing
  • Create, edit, and view CAD drawings
  • Remove multiple objects with easy selection and object preview.

Link: https://nanocad.com/


11) Leopoly

Leopoly is a 3D CAD software that is designed with a fully customizable digital landscape that can be easily used for any project. It offers solutions that manipulate 3d designs, speed up sales cycles, personalizes product experiences, and more.

Features:

  • It has built-in templates for 3D design.
  • This software includes intuitive tools and objects that can be easily customized.
  • Leopoly offers easy to use interface.
  • Allows you to STL (stereolithography) file.

Link: https://www.leopoly.com/


12) TinkerCAD

Tinkercad is a tool that offers a fast and easy way to draw a 3D design. It can be used by teachers, hobbyists, professional designers, and kids to make models. This application enables you to move, scale, and rotate objects with ease.

Features:

  • You can modify shapes and objects.
  • It enables you to align objects.
  • This tool allows you to rotate any shape.
  • You can import .svg and .stl file formats.
  • Tinkercad design can be exported in. stl, .vrml, .x3d, and .obj.
  • It provides many shortcuts for quickly performing any action.

Link: https://www.tinkercad.com/


13) Meshmixer

Meshmixer is a program that helps you make three-dimensional printing. It supports numerous selection tools, including surface-lasso, brushing, and constraints. This application can automatically align the surface.

Features:

  • You can perform stability and thickness analysis.
  • You can drag and drop elements.
  • It offers 3D positioning with pivots.
  • Automatically set the orientation.

Link: http://www.meshmixer.com/


14) Sweet Home 3D

Sweet Home 3D is a Computer-Aided Design software for making interior design. It allows you to draw plans of a house, arrange furniture, and view in 3D. This application can be accessed from smartphones, computers, and tablets.

Features:

  • You can drag objects to the plan.
  • It allows you to change color, size, texture, location, and orientation of furniture.
  • The tool automates the plan with room areas, texts, arrows, and more.
  • You can control the sunlight effect and customize lights.
  • It enables you to export the output as a bitmap, PDF, videos, and 3D files.
  • Sweet Home 3D offers numerous plugins programmed in Java.

Link: http://www.sweethome3d.com/


15) Open Cascade Technology

Open Cascade Technology is 3d model modeling software development for CAD. This application can easily deal with 3D or 2D geometric models. It provides a visualization module that provides complex mechanisms for representing graphical data.

Features:

  • It contains a wide range of topological and geometrical algorithms.
  • This 3D CAD software provides ready to use solution for handling application-specific data.
  • It offers an intuitive user interface.
  • You can calculate the volume and surface properties of shapes.

Link: https://www.opencascade.com/


16) SculptGL

SculptGL is a cloud-based tool that helps you to draw 3D sculptures using various tools like brush, flatten, smooth, inflate, and more. It allows you to apply symmetry and import/export files in 3D printable formats.

Features:

  • The tool can detect UV.
  • You can use this software in real time.
  • It allows you to undo and redo.
  • Supports alpha texture for each tool.
  • You can manage color, metalness, and roughness.
  • This tool can optimize pre and post transform cache.

Link: https://stephaneginier.com/sculptgl/


17) DraftSight

DraftSight is a feature-rich 2D and 3D CAD solution. This tool is a strong competitor of SketchUp. This is an easy tool to create, format, and arrange layers to ensure your design is organized and conforms to layering standards.

Features:

  • You can make 2D design and documentation
  • Quickly modify move, rotate, copy, and scale entities with one command.
  • Import existing blocks from your libraries or create new blocks that can be used as repeated elements in your designs.
  • Helps you to increase your efficiency with features like PDF Underlay to reference your PDFs

Link: https://www.3ds.com/products-services/draftsight-cad-software/


18) 3D Slash

3D Slash is a tool for creating three-dimensional models. This tool offers a fun way to create a design. You can use this application without any training. It enables you to paint models using color palettes.

Features:

  • Create 3D text or logo in one click.
  • Make a model with high precision.
  • You can copy-paste, move, resize, or combine models with ease.
  • Shapes can be inserted into your models.
  • It enables you to select parts of objects by color.
  • Share your creation on a social network.
  • It can be accessed from the web.
  • Make shapes using a photograph or image.

Link: https://www.3dslash.net/index.php


19) SelfCAD

SelfCAD is an application that helps you to make a 3D sketch, sculpt, and model. It contains many artistic drawing tools. This tool enables you to share your work with your colleague.

Features:

  • You can import, export, convert, and edit the objects from images.
  • Supports 3D painting.
  • Share your design on social media networks.
  • You can design printable objects without any hassle.
  • This application can be accessed from Safari, Chrome, and Firefox.

Link: https://www.selfcad.com/


20) Blender

Blender is a 3D modeling software for developing visual effects, animated movies, games, and more. This tool allows beginners to import or export video in MPEG, QuickTime, and AVI file formats. It offers keyboard shortcuts for convenience.

Features:

  • It has a path tracer for realistic rendering.
  • You can create, transform, sculpt, and edit your models.
  • It offers a real-time preview of the 3D scene and tracked footage.
  • You can customize shortcuts.
  • This tool helps you to turn still characters into impressive animations.
  • You can export your design as an image.
  • It enables you to draw a polygon shape.

Link: https://www.blender.org/


21) SolveSpace

SolveSpace is a 2D or 3D parametric tool that enables you to draw objects with revolves, extrudes, and Boolean operations. It allows you to export your drawing as PDF, SVG, and DXF (Drawing Interchange File).

Features:

  • You can import parts and drag them easily.
  • It allows you to analyze the traced path to the spreadsheet.
  • The tool allows you to draw a solid shaped model.
  • You can perform repeat (pattern), rotate, or translate operation.
  • This free drafting software enables you to export your drawing with an adjustable canvas size.

Link: http://solvespace.com/


22) Fusion 360

Fusion 360 is a cloud-based 3D design software that is suitable for educators and students. The application enables you to make various engineering parts.

Features:

  • It has a unified environment that enables you to create high-quality products.
  • You can create and edit a sketch with a sketching tool.
  • Quickly create a prototype to validate your design.
  • It provides manufacture ready outcomes that help you to meet your design specifications.
  • This free drafting software makes it easy to program your manufacturing process.

Link: https://www.autodesk.com/products/fusion-360/students-teachers-educators


23) LeoCAD

LeoCAD is an application that helps you to create new models without any hassle. It enables you to share and download from the internet.

Features:

  • It is open source so anyone can edit the features with ease.
  • This free AutoCAD program has a library of 10,000 different parts.
  • Anyone can build a model using advanced techniques.
  • It offers a friendly graphical user interface.

Link: https://www.leocad.org/


24) DesignSpark

DesignSpark is a platform that provides a solution that supports engineers to accelerate design cycle time. It enables users to draw a solid model in a 3D environment and create files to use with three-dimensional printers.

Features:

  • It allows for unlimited and frequent design changes using a set of tools.
  • This free AutoCAD program allows you to change the line thickness.
  • It enables you to upload DWG files.
  • The software can be used on 4K displays, UHD, Full HD.

Link: https://designspark.zendesk.com/


25) Vectary

Vectary is one of the best free cad software for beginners 3D designing platform. You can access it from any browser without installing it. This web-based application provides high-quality 3D results. The program helps you to assemble your first design by simply drag and drop.

Features:

  • It provides high-quality templates.
  • You can drag and drop 3D models.
  • It offers various advanced and fully textured material.
  • This free 3d CAD software offers smart shortcuts to speed up your work.
  • Make photorealistic rendering with just one mouse click.
  • Supports collaboration.
  • You can easily print design on 3d printer.
  • It enables you to attach comments to your models.

Link: https://www.vectary.com/


26) MicroStation

MicroStation offers advanced parametric 3D modeling capabilities. It allows infrastructure to deliver data-driven, BIM-ready models.

Features:

  • Design with true 3D parametric modeling
  • It helps you to ensure the proper application of organizational and project-specific standards and content.
  • Create precise drawings using a comprehensive set of drafting tools.
  • You can view and work with design information from others in real time.
  • Confidently work in the right context for each project with the required settings and standards automatically applied.

Link: https://www.bentley.com/en/products/brands/microstation


27) BRL-CAD

BRL-CAD is a powerful and the best free cad software for beginners. This 3D auto-cad Software offers interactive geometry editing, high-performance for rendering and geometric, and a system performance analysis.

Features:

  • Help you to make a better CAD system.
  • Free for the people all over the world.
  • Constructive solid geometry.
  • Offers a graphical display window.

Link: https://brlcad.org/


28) Clara.io

Clara.io is CAD software that helps you to make free 3D models from a web browser. This application contains a familiar user interface and tools for creating characters with ease.

Features:

  • It allows you to import/export more than 30 file formats.
  • This free 3d CAD software offers a drag and drop facility.
  • Clara.io application helps you to customize the plugins.
  • This application offers a huge photorealistic material library.
  • Clara.io enables you to share your creation with other people.

Link: https://clara.io/

FAQ:

⚡ How does CAD improve the quality of design?

CAD software enables designing to use a large number of tools that help to perform engineering analysis of any proposed system. They offer good accuracy and enable you to reduce errors drastically.

❓ Why is CAD useful in designing a product?

CAD is useful in many ways:

  • it allows for the easier development of products.
  • It also provides good modeling and even offers a basis for making a virtual network.
  • In engineering, CAD is very important and used to design and develop products that are used by customers.

⚡ What is the connection between CAD and CAM?

CAD and CAM both include the implementation of knowledge of mechanical engineer with the help of software. The most crucial relationship is CAD design generated in CAD tools.

❓ Is CAD difficult to learn?

No, CAD is not difficult to learn. Design-oriented people can easily learn any CAD tools. They just need to become comfortable with UI and commands.

❓ Why use CAD Software?

Here are the reasons of using CAD:

  • Provides higher-quality designs.
  • It enables you to reuse and change the design with ease.
  • Improve accuracy.
  • Easily share the final design with other people.

✔️ What products are made using CAD?

Here are the products that are made using CAD:

  • Technical drawings
  • Blueprints
  • Floor plans
  • Building plans
  • Architectural designs

 

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