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  1. #1
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    New Fusion 360 limitations

    Effective October 1, 2020, functionality in Fusion 360 for personal use will be limited, and you’ll no longer have access to the following:

    Probing, 3 + 2-axis milling (tool orientation), multi-axis milling, rapid moves, automatic tool changes
    Multi-sheets, smart templates, output options for drawings (print only).
    Download options from public share links
    Cloud rendering
    Export options including F3Z, DWG, DXF, IGES, SAT, and STEP
    Simulation and generative design
    Unlimited active and editable Fusion 360 documents (10 doc limit).
    Fusion 360 extensions
    So ... what other integrated CAD/CAM systems can I look at?
    There didn't use to be anything good in the Linux world -- maybe that has changed?

    I'm especially hit by the limit on document numbers -- I have tons of old cruft I sometimes go fishing in.
    Also, the "automatic tool change" is weird -- does this mean I can only export one toolpath at a time? I use a manual toolchanger, but I export all the paths in a single file.

    Oh, it's even worse:

    No multi-axis milling, probing,
    automatic tool change, rapid feed

  2. #2
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    To save people some searching:
    https://www.autodesk.com/products/fu...751.1600196235
    So unlimited archives and a limit of 10 active/editable documents and you're free to alter that list at any time. My guess is this is meant to inconvenience the license cheaters. Unfortunately it also inconveniences legitimate hobbyists. I'm starting to wish I'd maintained my early adopter license but they may have found a way to limit that as well. I was into it for $600 (or maybe $900) at the time.

    Even with the new restrictions I still see this as the best free software available. The scary part is this may not be the end of the license changes, like a death of 1000 cuts.
    There didn't use to be anything good in the Linux world -- maybe that has changed
    I've kept one foot in the FreeCad world just in case AutoDesk shuts the door completely. Compared to Fusion it's buggy and clumsy but it is free forever.
    Anyone who says "It only goes together one way" has no imagination.

  3. #3
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    Also, the "automatic tool change" is weird -- does this mean I can only export one toolpath at a time?
    It's all a bit vague isn't it ? I'm wondering how the doc limit will effect some large assemblies if each component is counted as a doc.
    Anyone who says "It only goes together one way" has no imagination.

  4. #4
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    FreeCad -- sure, but what's the CAM story there?

    Also, the "export each tool as a separate program" seems so arbitrary to me, even though I don't have an ATC. I guess I could come up with a naming convention and a simple script to splice them together after export.
    They claim that I can export multiple toolpaths that use the same tool as one file, but it's one file per tool.

    And the motivations for limiting rapid moves are terrible. "You can only high feed at the cutting feed rate, but most small mills won't be impacted."
    Yeah, uh ... cutting titanium, I move at a few inches per minute. This will easily double my cycle time.

  5. #5
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    FreeCad has the Path workbench for CAM. It's has a decent number of features but nothing close to Fusion.
    Anyone who says "It only goes together one way" has no imagination.

  6. #6
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    At least there aren't ads in display window or video ads before exporting finished product..... Want to draw a circle, just watch this advertisement for a new truck....

    I can't say I really blame them, I don't think 3d printing or even Tormach would be as successful without Fusion (mine came with a "powered by fusion360 magnet). Sort of the Windows OS of the maker world. Sure you can use a high end professional product at X thousand per seat or a Free product of limited potential with a big learning curve. I would wonder how many folks using an ATC are really selling less than $1000 per year. Personally, I think a better approach would be to place everything made with a free license freely available on a Fusion style thingiverse. If it's really a hobby, no need for privacy. If it was ever private on the cloud....

  7. #7
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    I don't sell anything and I don't have an ATC (I do have a PDB) but I certainly make personal amusement projects that require more than one tool. If I understand the announcement correctly I have to output the gcode for each tool into a separate file. Plus, I can't use my 4th axis. Plus, I can't do rapids. Plus, ...

  8. #8
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    In another forum, an astute member pointed out that solidworks student premium is available for free to members of the EAA (experimental aircraft association) which cost 40 a year or less to join. Maybe a whole better way to go than paying for fusion as a hobbiest. Limited to non-commercial and who knows what else.

  9. #9
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    Quote Originally Posted by cyclestart View Post
    It's all a bit vague isn't it ? I'm wondering how the doc limit will effect some large assemblies if each component is counted as a doc.
    The way I read it, it will only spit out the tool paths with the same tool at a time. So if you have a 2D adaptipve followed by a 2D Contour with the same tool, then those will go in the same program, but if you need to follow it up with some drilling, then thats another program you have to load. TWO more programs if you want to spot drill them before hand.

    This is a ridiculous change that is only meant to be annoying.

    The lack of rapids I can live without, its not a huge deal for a tormach sized machine, and its an incentive for people with larger machines and faster rapids to buy the software.

    Now if you want to tap a hole, its 3 programs to pull up, spot, drill, tap. If you have two sizes of tapped hole, then your looking at 5 programs.
    Want to use your superfly? thats another program.

    I have licensed copy of F360, but this is still a stupid change.

    Those with routers and ER collet spindles probably won't feel as effected.

  10. #10
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    More importantly, is there any guarantee that the price will remain at "only" us$300/year? Or that more features won't be removed?

  11. #11
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    I could see them capping the lines of code at some point...

  12. #12
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    we have been warned...thx fu360

    Hell yes... https://www.freecadweb.org/

  13. #13
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    STEP is a common import format for other CAD. What other CAD imports .F3d ? I don't know.
    What imports best into FreeCad ? STEP
    STEP disappears as an export format from Fusion soon.
    Looks like I'll be busy.
    Anyone who says "It only goes together one way" has no imagination.

  14. #14
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    CAD/CAM software is a tool just like a mill or lathe. In fact it's a very important part of the workflow. In the age of freeware I think many people believe software can be downloaded so it must be free, but a package like Fusion is complex and expensive to develop and maintain. We users have had it good for a number of years but I'm sure the free version has been exploited by many companies using it to make good money but they don't seem to be receiving much criticism here.

    I started to use Fusion when Alibre conveniently "lost" their license server. The only way to ensure I could continue to use the product would have been to buy a new license. Today a comparable Alibre license would cost me around $1750. Maintenance for subsequent years costs a further $700 per year. That gives me only CAD and with fewer features than Fusion.
    My last Sprutcam maintenance update cost me $376 back in 2016 (maybe that's changed since). Again, that's only for CAM.

    I checked all "quality" alternatives but all were far too expensive. Fusion still comes out top whether free or $800 for 3 years for CAD and CAM. Now with PCB design included I also have the advantage of larger prints with more than 2 layers in the same package.

    Someone on this forum once said that if we wanted a cheap hobby we should take up knitting. CNC Machining is not cheap an we shouldn't expect it to be. I'm always amazed how people would buy a fixture plate (which 99% don't need), or the servo upgrade without blinking an eye, but software has to be free. I don' thin anyone expects Tormach to supply free toolholders for hobby use only, so why should software be any different?

    Having said that, I wonder if Tormach might be able to negotiate a Tormach specific version at a reduced price with at least support for tool changes? I'd still probably have to go for the full package but it might be interesting for a lot of other Tormach users.

    Step

  15. #15
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    Guys,

    As a hobbyist I am equally concerned about where this might go. Autodesk are going to try and maximise their income stream and especially
    for the hard times we are currently in. As far as FreeCAD is concerned I am prepared to accept present limitations witha view to wonderful things
    coming in future. I am not interested in cloud computing per se and would not want software to be supplied like fusion 360 is.

    I know that f360 might leave a lot of people in the lurch in the short term and there will be more left in the lurch later. Who says adesk will stop
    here? They have purchased :instructables" and might that go the same way?

    I hope that some clever software guys will go over and develop a 5D workbench that will be an add on to FreeCAD and get a bigger income from
    community donations than they could get as a salary via "the suits".

    Autodesk was never the same after John Walker was squeezed out. His web site is worth a look. Fourmilab .ch is for canton helvetica
    not china!

    The CAD world may never be the same after this latest announcement from Adesk.

    Regards

    Tony Aimer

    Johannesburg
    South Africa
    tonyATaimer.co.za

  16. #16
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    Step, I completely understand the costs of software development and maintenance -- I spent my working life doing development and I owned a software company for many years. My problem is the change in terms of use. It would be fine if one could continue to use all of the functions in the current free version. I could accept the situation if Autodesk were to offer a perpetual licence at a specified price. I could then evaluate the alternatives and make a rational decision. However, whether business or hobbyist, it is unacceptable to have invested hundreds (thousands?) of hours in training and designing widgets and then be given two weeks notice of drastic changes in their offering.

    Fortunately, I have been putting off becoming proficient in Fusion so I am essentially unaffected.

  17. #17

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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    I read the announcement email and had a lot of the same reactions as most of you hear. I was pissed that the only good tool I have been able to find that isn't far beyond my financial reach is being gutted from every angle. Even on a tormach, the lack of rapids hurts bad (especially since I just installed servos last weekend). Hell, a simple drilling cycle on a part that I'm getting ready to make is going to turn into an unnecessarily long program. It's roughly 20 smallish holes in a part that is actually larger than the working area of the machine (will have to flip it to get the other 20 holes done). With a feedrate in single digit ipm all that travelling around the table is going to suck something fierce. I spent a good amount of time looking at other options and eventually slapped myself and accepted the same thought process as Step. Ultimately we have all been benefiting from Autodesk's generosity in offering such a powerful program for nothing. Compared to all the other options that I've seen, Fusion is either massively more capable in every respect, or so inexpensive by comparison as to be essentially free even if it isn't (or both in some cases). I have very much enjoyed the past year of working with the software for free but I can't knock them for wanting to push people into paid subscriptions. They, like anyone else, deserve to get paid for their work. They are still offering a free version, albeit one that is too restrictive for my purposes going forward which they really aren't required to do. In my experience, most freebie software will let you get all the way to the end of a project, only to inform you that you can't save it for any kind of external use (or in some cases, not at all) so this is still better than a lot of other options.

    I agree that more notice would have been better, two weeks is hardly enough time to properly react to a change like this, which is probably the point, it creates an urgency that is probably intended to "force" users into subscribing rather than lose functionality while they look for something else. Kind of a b*#$h move there. I do also worry that as time goes on the cost of subscription will only increase to maintain today's functionality but that's a risk with all software. Very little anymore is available without a subscription. Even a heavy hitter like mastercam is software as a service these days. Stop paying the annual renewal and bye bye software. Intuit did the same thing to Quickbooks several years ago AND jacked up the annual renewal at the same time. Pissed me off beyond words. Then I realized that switching to a different package was going to cost upwards of 20-50k and I'd still be paying a good chunk for annual renewal anyway.

    My monologue has gone on long enough but to summarize, I may not be happy about what's happening, but I get it from a business perspective. I'm sure someone else will step in as the new go to for hobbyists and makers but that will take time and the software will be limited and buggy until there's enough community behind it to make it work well. For what it's worth, I'm a weekend keyboard warrior so if anyone does want to start up something along those lines I'd be happy to get involved. I'm by no means proficient in any programming language but I've taught myself to be dangerous in several so I can probably help out to some level.

  18. #18

    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    I think the problem is that a lot of businesses were running Fusion for free in their shops. In process probing for example, who is that for? Not the hobby type folk. Getting rid of rapids is just petty, though.

    I started on Fusion with a paid subscription because I wanted support. I paid $320, this was three years ago. It's on sale now for $297 for a year. I make money with my machine, but I am still a hobbyist. I do it in my spare time, after work, and only accept the work I have time to do. Otherwise I run the machine to make parts for myself, mostly for fun. I don't love $300 a year, but I'm sure I spend twice that annually on end mills alone. So I'll probably bite the bullet and pay up. Alternatively, I could take a class at the community college and get an Edu license. I believe they last three years, and a class is only like $450.

  19. #19
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    FYI, if you have a personal license for hobby use this is what you agreed to:
    Fusion 360 for personal use is free for 1-year for qualifying non-commercial users. A hobbyist user must generate less than $1,000 USD in annual revenue, using Fusion 360 for home-based, non-commercial design, manufacturing, and fabrication projects.
    https://www.autodesk.com/products/fusion-360/personal
    I'm not a Tormach owner so I'll stop monopolizing this thread. As a linuxcnc user thank you Tormach for the trajectory planner.
    Anyone who says "It only goes together one way" has no imagination.

  20. #20
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    Re: New Fusion 360 limitations

    Onshape still has a free license so long as you don't make any money with it and will run on Linux in a browser. All your files will technically be public but who's going to looking for them?

    Lots of "inexpensive" CAM programs around depending on how you define inexpensive. Not many run in Linux so far as I know but I don't follow that market.

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