Unless I am to co-design something with someone living far away, I see no reason for bothering with the DXF or DWG sort of files.
These days I am slowly working my way through the QCAD manual. This is more like a good old course manual, say in Word Perfect , Word or Excel. I have now come to Part IV on p.162 out of 246 (218 really; the last part on projections I don't need now).
Ok, ok, I have made a couple of sidesteps to the last part about printing and exporting to other file formats:
Printing is wonderfully easy. Drawing has all the time been done in 1:1 scale (I just zoom in and out between details and overview). For printing one chooses a scale where the drawing fits within the printer's paper format, say 1:50. The printer preview function lets one move the drawing around on the preview "paper" until it looks good. The amazing thing is that when checking the printout with a 1:50 scale, it is bang on! I can also print it to an Adobe (PDF) file, as easy as that.
The standard export "bitmap" or photo format is called PNG. I hadn't heard about it, but all my photo programs handle it. The QCAD then asks for wanted resolution, and once set (say 3000 x 4000pix) the resulting PNG file comes out nice and tidy and surprisingly small. In QCAD I hide a number of helping lines in a special "layer" which I just turn off before printing or exporting.
I am glad I asked this list for help to find a CAD program. I don't know if QCAD is the best program, but it surely will do the job for me. To anyone who wants to try CAD for the first time I strongly recommend going for a program with a real manual.
Special thanks to Paul Thompson for help in the beginning!
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "jcuknz" <jcuknz@...> wrote:
> I concur .... and wonder why the average person needs a CAD programme when drawings can be sent in something simple and common like GIF without being a huge file. As Paul knows I have just received QCAD Pro but that, to me, is for originating rather than transmitting except to people who I know have a CAD programme, not that I want to inflame the situation so ignore me :-)