TechDraw Roadmap

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Preferences-techdraw.svg


The TechDraw Workbench was introduced officially as part of FreeCAD in version 0.17. It is relatively new and hasn't had the years of development that have benefited some other workbenches. Still, TechDraw now meets it's original design goal and can now "produce basic technical drawings based on the 3D model".

Here is a rough roadmap of areas to be addressed in the future (in no particular order).

Current Activity

  • leader line and rich text annotation block
  • cosmetic geometry - add center lines to Views, eraser for cosmetic items
  • bug fixes

Upcoming

  • center line between edges
  • color/weight/style/visibility setting for individual lines in a View.
  • change from "real time update" to "update on demand"
  • Coverity and PVS-Studio code quality fixes

Recent Changes

  • various bug fixes, backports
  • cosmetic vertices
  • Annotation toolbar

Possible Changes for v0.19

View Options

The ability to create a view from a 3D window or from existing 2D geometry.

Navigation Models

TechDraw does not support the various navigation model used in the rest of FreeCAD (CAD, Blender, etc).

Standards Compliance

TechDraw does not fully conform with any standard. The ability to select a drawing standard and have the various idiosyncrasies respected is required.

HLR vs Face Occlusion

TechDraw PartViews use the OCC Hidden Line Removal algorithms to project the Shape. HLR is computation intensive, and some (many? most?) views do not require hidden lines to be displayed. A new method of generating views is required. This may require getting the image directly from the 3D display.

GD&T, ControlFrames, Symbols

This area of TD is weak and needs to be upgraded.

Draft/Arch coexistence

There are inconsistencies between the way the Draft/Arch and TechDraw modules represent shapes. This limits the suitability of TechDraw for Draft/Arch users. One notable short-coming is that TechDraw is unable to apply Dimensions to the Svg images it receives from Draft/Arch.

Templates

Making a template with editable text fields requires significant expertise with SVG and an SVG editor like Inkscape. Making the template creation process simpler will be a priority in the v0.18 development cycle.

Drawing Tools

This includes the ability to add leaders, callouts and detail highlights to Views. It is a prerequisite to many enhancements, particularly in the drawing annotation area, such as feature control frames and reference highlights for detail views.

2D Geometry

A number of 2D geometry functions were recently added to the Part module. This needs to be reviewed with an eye towards replacing custom 2D geometry code in TechDraw with standard code from Part.

"non-Vertex" Dimensions

There is a need for Dimensions that do not rely on specific vertex/edges, but on extrema of the figure - for example, overall width/height. Also the ability to create Dimensions based solely on the 3D model even if there is no corresponding projected geometry.


Bug Fixes/Feature Requests

See the bug tracker for up to date information.

  • the inability of Qt to export fills/hatches to SVG continues to be a problem, particularly for users of Draft and Arch workbenches.
  • "broken view" - the ability to depict very large objects on the page.
  • helix projections - https://forum.freecadweb.org/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=9513&start=10
  • colour management
  • thread notation
  • "view groups"