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PDF to TurboCad

Old 10-10-2018, 12:26 PM
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ripplewave
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Default PDF to TurboCad

Hello All,

I am hoping someone out there can enlighten me. I have been working with TurboCad 17 Deluxe to create new designs with the intent of getting them laser cut and have become fairly proficient over the past year. What I would also like to do is convert some of the PDFs, floating around the internet, to update the design and create cut files. Does anyone have any experience using a PDF as a template to draw over in TC? I have found a myriad of converters than can convert it to a ton of different format, but have had no success. Ive not been successful on any forum either.

Any help is appreciated

Thanks

Joe
Old 10-10-2018, 02:30 PM
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R8893
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Joe, I use a different CAD program, but TC probably has the same tools I use. I am basically self-taught, so there are probably easier ways. Be forewarned, it is a tedious project.

First I scan the plans and import to the program. Then I place loci along the curved part I want to copy. I have a tool that fits a curved line to any number of points. I use this tool to connect the loci and then see how well the line matches the pdf line. Then I nudge the loci to where a better fit would be obtained, delete the first line, and reconnect the "dots." I repeat until I am satisfied with the result.

Chuck
Old 10-10-2018, 03:01 PM
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ripplewave
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Default Hey Chuck!

Thanks for the tips! I wonít be able to see how they work until I can get a pdf into TC. Thatís my big dilemma. I canít seem to see if it does act like it opens or imports the file.
Old 10-12-2018, 04:40 PM
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PDF is an image and not a table of points and vectors and other numbers which is what you need for CAD. I can import a PDF as an "object" in my TC15. But it's just one big image. Not separate bits and bobs that can then be moved around separately like you would like. Plus the line widths depending on the size of the PDF tend to be rather wide. Again not good for sending off to the laser guy.

What I and others have done to make actual CAD files is to import the image then trace over the key parts. Somewhat time consuming but that seems to be what is required.

There's raster to vector conversion programs and you're welcome to download and try them. But they don't know what to do with large wide lines either. So the results when you tell it to go ahead and convert are such that the time needed to clean and correct things ends up being just about as much work as tracing over the lines yourself.

Not good news I know. And I'd be just as happy if someone can point to a newer and better performing raster (image) to vector conversion app that doesn't cost the world.
Old 10-12-2018, 07:52 PM
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Chad Veich
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If the PDF was made from a vector format file then it can often be converted back to a vector format file without introducing too many offending artifacts. Sometimes they convert back nice and clean and other times they are nearly worthless. Depends I suppose on the file itself and how it was converted in the first place. My software of choice for the conversion (or de-conversion if you prefer) is Adobe Illustrator. If you have a PDF file that you would like converted into a DXF file I would be happy to give it a go. No guarantees about the outcome but it won't cost you anything to try.
Old 10-14-2018, 07:26 PM
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ripplewave
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I was simply looking for a way to use the pdf as a template to trace over. I was looking for specific menu steps, etc. I did figure it out. Thank you all for your input.
Old 10-15-2018, 06:29 AM
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Originally Posted by ripplewave View Post
I was simply looking for a way to use the pdf as a template to trace over. I was looking for specific menu steps, etc. I did figure it out. Thank you all for your input.
I use Draftsight instead of TC but its the same process. At Zamzar.com you can convert the PDF to JPEG image. They send you the converted file to your provided email. I use to insert the image as a background inside Draftsight and trace over the parts I want to print on card stock paper and use it as templates. Hope it helps. Alex
Old 10-28-2018, 05:03 PM
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there is no simple way to convert line images to vectors...so ,always, import the images,and trace the vectors on that image layer.It is not as tedious as it seems.In autocad,draw a rectangle in the shape you want,then,edit it by adding points,then editing as polylines,then changing segments to curves

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