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What is a good, cheap, 3D part modeling program? Answered

I need a program to design 3D parts, if I had a few thousands of dollars budget, I would of purchased Inventor or Solidworks but they are much too expensive.
Searching the web I only found all kinds of open source programs that are not "professional" enough. I am looking for something cheaper than 100$. Anybody knows about one? Thanks.

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steveastroukBest Answer (author)2012-08-02

Try
http://www.alibre.com/products/hobby/

Its 200 USD, but about the best offering I've seen in that price point.

It can be extended to the Expert version, with simulation, CAM software etc etc

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bwrussell (author)2012-08-03

I thought I remember Dassault saying something about a hobbyist version of solidworks but I could be confusing that with 123D or Alibre. I've heard Sketchup has come a long way, you might give it a shot.

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rickharris (author)2012-08-03

Good /cheap are usually mutually exclusive!

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mpilchfamily (author)2012-08-02

I think one of the best free ones out there is Google Sketchup. If that is too limited then i'm afraid you will have to shell out more the $100 to get something you'll like.

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canucksgirl (author)2012-08-02