Can you recommend a program to simulate or model the design for a building project with PVC tubing?

Radie February 24, 2011
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I am building a “sculture” out of PVC tubing. Does anyone know of a software or website that will allow me to lay out my design?

Specifically, I am building a little jungle gym for my toddler. It has become tough to test out ideas on graph paper and was hoping for some sort of program that would help.

I suppose it doesn’t have to be PVC specific (though that would be ideal), it could be a SIMPLE program to build wire-frames perhaps?

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  1. Anonymous
    February 25, 2011 at 7:38 pm

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  2. Mike
    February 25, 2011 at 7:21 am

    There are a lot of 3D wire-frame software out there but I'm afraid none of them really suits your needs. They all have a rather slow learning curve if you want to do more than rendering basic shapes.

    Freeware:
    Google Sketchup http://sketchup.google.com probably the easiest one
    Blender http://www.blender.org/

    Share-, Trial-, Demo-ware:
    AutoCAD http://usa.autodesk.com/autocad-architecture/
    Maya http://usa.autodesk.com/maya/
    Cinema 4D http://www.maxon.net/products/cinema-4d-prime/

    • Will Radie
      February 25, 2011 at 4:14 pm

      Well.. I have messed with Sketch-Up before and I suppose I could peek back in an see what I can hack my way through as far as wire-frame.

      For what it is worth I do want to make a simple structure out of 1 and 2 foot squares.. Just some tubes crisscrossing each other for my son to crawl around on... VERY basic.

      Now that I think about it.. Using a CAD program and LDAW (http://www.ldraw.org) might do the trick. I might be able to use the virtual LEGOs to stand in as PVC.

      • Tina
        February 28, 2011 at 4:10 am

        Will,

        which program worked best for you in the end?