Better sketching capabilities


First I would like to say that I love using shapr and so dies my students. It’s a great introduction to CAD and yet it’s very powerful. However, I wish there were more sketching possibilities to make this an even more powerful CAD platform that can compete with the big guys in a big way. Here are some of the sketching features that I really miss:

  1. The ability to sketch in layers. Right now, everything that is on the same plane ends up on the same layer. For complex CAD drawings, a single layer can contain thousands of sketches. There should be an option to create new layers to sketch on but still be on the same plane and with the possibility of connecting and interacting with the other layers on the same plane. Think of how Affinity Designer does this with vectors.

  2. The ability to calculate inside the app. Just simple functions like adding, subtracting, dividing and multiplying should be available in the box where you write dimensions. For example. If I sketch a line that is 9,58 cm long and I want to add another 4,35 cm to it I know have to leave the app and use a calculator to get the new length when really it should only be a matter of hitting “+4,35” and that is then automatically added to the existing length of 9,58 cm. This is also something that is possible in a graphic software like Affinity Designer but not in the more powerful shapr3D.

  3. The ability to chamfer and filet edges in a sketch. To do this now, one has to mess around with circles and the trim tool, calculating exact angles to get the circle perfectly lined up. This is very time consuming.

  4. A better scale tool that uses scale instead of percent. One should be able to define a scale to a drawing, for example 1:1 and then also have the possibility to scale it to for example 1:100 or 1:1000. Right now one must calculate exact percentages between different scales.

I hope to see at least some of these features in the near future. Thank you for doing a great job with this app so far.

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  1. and 2. are on our roadmap. 4. is clear, but I would love to better understand why you need 3.

Very good news to hear that 1 and 2 are on your roadmap. This will make me and my students very happy.

Regarding number 3 I will try to explain why. It’s not very common that things we draw have straight edges. Many objects found in our surroundings have either chamfered or filleted edges. Let’s for example say that I’m drawing a front elevation of rectangular television set with rounded corners. The assumption in Shapr3D now is that I sketch a rectangle and then extrude it into a 3D model. After that I can chamfer the edges so they become rounded. But what if I am not interested in a 3D model at this point? What if I only want to create a sketch of the television and then export that as a dwg file and share it with others? For example, maybe I want to give my students an assignment where they need to create a 3D model based on drawings. Without the rounded corners in the drawing there is no way for them to know they are supposed to be there.

The only way to chamfer the edges would be to draw circles in the corners and then use the trim tool to get rid of the straight corners. This requires using Pythagorean theorem on the radius to get the correct distance from the edge at a 45 degree angle. Very time consuming.

Basically what this boils down to is how much you want to compete with big guys like AutoCad. You already have a very powerful CAD system that is far more user friendly and fun to use. Why not make it a very powerful CAD system as well?

Attached is an example of a side elevation that contains many chamfered edges, all done with circles. It took a while to get them right.


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For a fillet, just draw two lines, each perpendicular to a side, at a distance from the corner of your fillet radius. The intersection of those lines will be the center of your fillet arc. No Pythagorean Theorem needed.

That’s not to say a dedicated 2D fillet and chamfer tool wouldn’t be handy. :wink:

Good points, thank you.

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Yes this works but it would be nice to have it as a built in option instead of having to work around it :slight_smile:

I like to draw a circle and then lines and erase the unneeded bits. It’s a form of dyslexia I think…

That said, I am not sure about the Apple Pencil as I am a PC guy, so I am asking: Some pens have erase functions by flipping over. Can that be used to “erase” the bits of lines you don’t want in Shapr sketch mode?

The Apple Pencil 2 has a second sensor in it; when you double-tap near the tip, the pencil is changed to an alternate mode. That mode is configurable and one of the options is usually erase. I haven’t experimented with the modes that Shapr3D supports.

Eraser more fit to work on a different sketch structure type of apps.

Like drawings apps that does not deal with connecting points to make a sketch

Edit: It’s awesome to select Trim tool with it though. :grinning:
My humble opinion.

Also I’d like to mention to Shapr3D Devs
There is a sensitivity issue on far sketch and objects selecting.

Like it’s hard to select something when you zoom out even if it’s clear

Sometimes you gotta zoom in or by luck you hit the target

That was the context of “erase” I was thinking of. I find the double-tap difficult to do, though. Is there a trick to it?

I would like to tell you
But I don’t have that pen unfortunately

Well that’s what I was getting at, alternate button set up for the trim tool, or the erase function