Carbide Create Replacement

Looking to Upgrade Carbide Create to something I can use for 3D Design.
Any ideas.

Low Cost or Free if Possible
Easy to set up and use for the beginner
Compatible with XL machine and Carbide Motion

Easy and 3D don’t seem to go together.

The community has notes on software at:

for the free stuff and: for commercial.

Which you choose will depend on what sort of projects you want to make, how you wish to work, and what sort of licensing you might want.

My suggestions on things to research:

  • Solvespace — free/opensource, good for mechanical design
  • OpenSCAD — free/opensource, if you have any programming experience
  • Moment of Inspiration — low cost commercial, good for freeform work
  • Shapr3D — if you have an iPad Pro and an Apple Pencil
  • SketchUp — if you won’t be selling anything

Fusion 360 is amazing, and free. Spend like 10 hours watching videos, I now use it for everything.


Seconded. Fusion360 is free as long as you are making less than US$100,000 / year with it. Even at the full cost it would be great value.

You can use it to sketch, design, strength analysis (useful if cutting a structural part), Rendering, and create 2.5D & 3D CAM/Toolpaths

There are thousands of videos on youtube to learn it, the learning curve isn’t that steep.


Lots of things are 3d. I think it depends on what types of projects you want to make. I can make a lot of things in Fusion 360, but I won’t be creating a bas relief of a bunch of wild horses with it.
Can you be more specific?

Fusion360 has a bit of a learning curve coming from 2D design, but it’s an exceptionally powerful suite. I really like fusion360 now that I’ve spent the time with it.

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