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FreeHand Forum • View topic - FreeHand in 3D (convert to DXF)
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FreeHand in 3D (convert to DXF)

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FreeHand in 3D (convert to DXF)

Postby Handsfree » Tue Oct 16, 2018 10:07 pm

Some of us CAD designers who had bought FreeHand MX on the promise that it would now export to DXF format where very disappointed to learn that the Mac version did not work as promised. DXF never worked on export. All we could do was export to illustrator (groan) and then and then export again from Illustrator. However if your still using FreeHand (any version) then you could try this neat trick by using INKSCAPE (which is available on Linux, mac and Windows and costs zilch). The latest version (v.94) is quite good on importing FreeHand files (PDF only) and export to CAD formats (like DXF). This is the only way you can export your flat 2D plans into the 3D environment of SketchUp. Once imported you can use the drawing tools to outline the plans you have outlined (they import as flat floor plans) and its quite a novel experience seeing your flat drawings come alive in 3D. From there they can be grouped (as components), rendered in colour (as materials) and finally animated (as scenes) in SketchUp. The sequence is fast and fairly easy. I have learnt few more CAD tricks along the way to produce this example movie (of which you do need to tweak the default export settings (in SketchUp) to get the best movie export size as i had to do here. Alternatively you can export to a single hi-res jpeg format as a still photo in 3D which is pretty easy to do too.

I think you’ll all have fun with this. I did and here is an example movie I have just completed which shows what you can do with a FreeHand to DXF export and using 3D Modeling. See example movie (3.9Mb Mp4) https://tinyurl.com/FreeHand3D


Other links that may be of interest to FreeHand users:
Link to INKSCAPE (for DXF conversion) Mac/PC and Linux options available
https://inkscape.org/en/release/0.92.3/
Link to X11 (required for Quartz on a Mac if not already installed requires os 10.6.3 or later). X1 is open source but Quartz is an Apple system extension to enable open source software to work on a Mac osx (which is based on Unix).
https://www.xquartz.org/
Link to SketchUp! (Mac and PC versions - no special version requirement)
https://www.sketchup.com/products/sketchup-pro
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Re: FreeHand in 3D (convert to DXF)

Postby FFH Mark » Sat Oct 20, 2018 9:30 pm

Wow, that is terrific to view the video. Interesting that bringing the FreeHand-created PDF into Inkscape is the workaround to export as CAD. Will post this to the community on FB and Twitter.
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FFH Mark
 
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