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Are there any graphics programs that work like AutoCad or Inventor where you can draw objects and give them precise dimensions? Even better, something parametric like Inventor. I don't like lining stuff up by eye or using flaky snap grids. I'm hoping for something really extensive, and straight forward as if one was drawing simple parts (I plan on making icon vectors). Is there anything like this?


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Illustrator can be set up somewhat that way. Using a grid and enabling snap to grid helps with units and works a lot better than Photoshop. And objects can be sized precisely. But nothing comes close to drawing for 3D. I tried Rhino for a while for its path operations (fillets, curve control). If I remember correctly it was a lot cheaper than Solidworks or Autodesk programs. – KMSTR Jul 1 '13 at 12:24

Presumably you mean "free" since you have mentioned two extensive packages that do what you want.

FreeCAD is an open source parametric 3D modeler.

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Probably your best option is to use Illustrator w/ the CAD Tools plug-in from Hot Door:

One can of course edit any object's dimensions / properties directly and numerically using the Transform Palette in Illustrator.

Macromedia FreeHand of course, allowed one to add dimension lines using PostScript programming.

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