Originally Posted by JohnnyMc
... By the way, how do you go about designing your parts. Do you draw scale parts on paper first, then transfer information to your 3d program to figure out? What 3d program do you use or recommend that is not very expensive? Thank you.
I always use my computer, even for first drafts.
I´ve downloaded EmachineShop free software that makes designing new parts so easy. You can draw just like on paper (even complicated boundary lines that program will group), adjust material thickness and then go with the machining (bend, mill, drill) process.
Once part have been finished, you can get a 3D view and fly around to check every corner. Next step can be online ordering (expensive, but you receive a completely finished part), or export to DXF files that can be sent to other waterjet cutting/CNC milling companies.
Once at home I can mill bearing holders and some slots/lightening windows with my own Proxxon system.