W02 - Computer-Aided Design

1. Weekly Assignments ( -> what I did this week )

  • Model (raster, vector, 2D, 3D, render, animate, simulate, …) a possible final project, compress your images and videos, and post it on your class page ( -> This week, I tried several CAD software, and made the simple model of my Potential Final Project. )

Have you?

Questions from “Fab Academy 2020 Assignments and Assessment

Computer-Aided Design

( -> my answers )

  • Modelled experimental objects/part of a possible project in 2D and 3D software ( -> tried GIMP, FreeCAD, sketchup, fusion360 )
  • Shown how you did it with words/images/screenshots ( -> see the next paragraph )
  • Included your original design files ( - > fusion360 file )

2. Description of Assignment work

Evaluate & select, Demonstrate & describe processes used in modeling with 2D and 3D software

(1) 2D raster


  • I installed GIMP, and painted some lines.

  • The characteristic of raster CAD was confirmed, by magnifying the part of the above.

whole image detail
2020-02-08_at_15.50.52_2d_raster_gimp_result 2020-02-08_at_15.48.19_2d_raster_gimp_detail_result

(2) 2D vector


  • I installed FreeCAD, and drew some lines.

  • The characteristic of vector CAD was confirmed, by magnifying the part of the above.

  • whole image detail
    2020-02-08_at_15.52.08_2d_vector_freecad_result 2020-02-08_at_15.52.08_2d_vector_freecad_result

fusion360 ( sketch )

Taking this opportunity, I wanted to make something practical. So, I made a “iPad supporter for MacBook” ( in my case, auxiliary monitor instead of iPad ).

  • cardboard prototyping

    ipad_supporter_cardboard_test1 ipad_supporter_cardboard_model
  • modeling in fusion360 ( sketch )


  • laser cutting

I used 0.5mm PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plate.

masking tape for bending the PET plate
ipad_supporter_1 ipad_supporter_2

(3) 3D CAD

sketchup ( sketchy physics ( physical simulator ) )

  • “sketchy physics” is a physical simulator as a plug-in of sketchup. I installed them and tried simple example. Although the file ran with sketchup2013 on my MacBook, “sketchy physics” is not supported on the newer version of sketchup.


video example, sketchy physics

Rhinoceros + Grasshopper ( + Kangaroo )

  • ( I’ll try parametric design and physical simulation, when I have a time. )


  • I’ll use fusion360 to proceed my final project, because this system has necessary functions such as 2D sketch, 3D modeling, assembles, joints, etc.
  • Then, I made simple model of my final project, which shows some outline of the project. The details will be designed later in accordance with this fab academy course.



tree-structure of the components, and the drive simulator



generator and slider ( corresponds to the pedals of bicycle )




shaft, bearing, pulley rotor, stater
2020-02-11_17.52.51_FP_gen_shaft 2020-02-11_17.54.03_FP_gen_stator

3. Important Learning Outcome

  • I think “FreeCAD” is a powerful open source system which has variety of functions, although the interface is a little difficult to understand.
  • Also, I feel a great possibility of the Rhino + Grasshopper ( + Optimus ) which can handle the multi-objective optimization problem.

( to download the files, click here )

GIMP file GIMP_sample.xcf

FreeCAD file freecad sample.FCStd

fusion360 files

“iPad supporter for MacBook” monitor supporter rev1 v7.f3d

Final Project “generator” gen assy v1.f3d

Final Project “drive simulator” simulator assy.f3d

5. Appendix



sketchy physics


Rhino + Grasshopper ( + Optimus )