Freecad – best open source model development environment

CAD is short for computer assisted design, while I was in school study engineering, professors always recommend some sort of CAD software for developing the 3D models. Recently, I heard that 3D printer can import 3D models and can print that into a product. I am a big fan of DOTA2 and all the characters there has corresponding 3D models. For example, here you can download the model for a hero “Juggernaut”, however, there are three different types of models that you can download.

FBX: FBX (Filmbox) is a proprietary file format (.fbx) developed by Kaydara and owned by Autodesk since 2006. It is used to provide interoperability between digital content creation applications. FBX is also part of Autodesk Gameware, a series of video game middleware.

MAYA: a very popular software for 3D model development. Very expensive too $1300+

SMD: is a specific format that developed by the company Valve who is the company that built DOTA2

While I was doing some research how to download some open source software to play with 3D design, I came across FreeCAD.


However, OpenCAD is not omnipotent and I have to convert the FBX format into STL format to be able to load into Freecad. I am using an online converter greentoken, but feel free to leave a comment if you have a better solution or you happen to know how to load in FBX, MA or SMT directly into Freecad.

Here is how it looks like in the end:


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