Discussions for "Better snapping and precision modeling"

Does anyone know about the current process of improving precision modeling?

I’m a student majoring in architecture and have been waiting long for precision modeling to be improved. However, I haven’t seen not so much improvements for the past year or two. Only some auto-merge editing, some more snapping options, and little knife tool improvements…

There’s people and professors in department of architecture of our university who’s recommending Blender for architectural use, even though it is not fully feature-complete for this field. This is amazing becuase most people didn’t even know what Blender was just two years ago. I really think now is the chance for Blender to expand its potential to this new area. It’s a whole new market with many new possibilities, which may be even bigger than the movie/animation industry.

From my perspective as a student majoring in architect, the only reason Blender still lacks at precision modeling is because the community is more focused on animation, artwork, etc. That’s a good thing. It made Blender come this far. However I keep thinking, ‘With this wave of transitioning to Blender in department of architecture, is it okay to use as it is now? Maybe not…’. There are just not enough architects to contribute to the community yet, therefore not getting enough spotlight.

One thing I can tell is, only if the list items in the post by mano-wii becomes real(Possibly with the asset browser able to drag and drop trees, people and cars)… Blender will nearly have no competitors in the field of architectural visualization(Twinmotion, Lumion is currently becoming more popular).

Just to be clear, I don’t think Blender would be able to compete with mechanic/2D CAD programs(Since they need to support complex curve/nurbs functions such as fillet, split, trim and auto linewidth printing), but in terms of 3D architectural visualization, it’s nearly there.

Maybe then we will have more architects in the community and can talk about section planes, boolean extrusion, etc… thanks for reading!


I only know two major addons for such tasks:

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Thanks for the recommendation. I really appreciate it.

I’ve actually used both of these and currently still using ‘CAD Like transform’ addon. However It’s hard to recommend Blender to my colleagues if one needs to model basic building using a 5$ external addon… Things like basepoint snapping should be included in Blender by default to be used in architecture in my opinion.

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One more built in addon “tinyCAD mesh tools”.

I would also like to see more love for CAD modeling in blender, but this requires a specialist developer who knows exactly how to implement CAD features.

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I don’t know how exactly “Design” tasks works, example with UV editing (right column)

Maybe someone who very familiar with CAD process start to make Design tasks?
I only use some of CAD soft from time to time.
From my perspective I see it like “Sculpting” with its own “CAD” tab where all cad tools would be at “T” panel.

“Let me introduce myself” ©

I am a workflow designer in architectural company, who tries to make Blender compatible with CADwork workflow types (engineering, manufacturing, architecture).
You may be familiar with our research and proposals in this area, such as 1D_Scripts, CAD snap or even B.A.S.E proposal.

Default Basepoint CAD snapping is a subject we was pushing for a decade, and it is already almost finished.

Yes, this is how magic of marketing actually works - this way people use more popular software rater than more suitable. In practice, we are forced to use 2.79 for architectural work because its design better fits that goal, especially for complex projects.

Indeed, it is hard to propose cad features.
We think it is because there are almost no people in Blender development familiar with CADwork, such as engineers, who can can easily afford CADwork development.
Some potential features was rescently corrupted during redesign (selection, shading, outline, interface) to enhance ARTwork compatible workflows, so we are trying to fix that to make Blender compatible with CADwork again, instead of designing CAD features and architectural workflows (common groups, CAD tools, proxy systems, Linked data management, etc).
In short, Blender was pushed to the market so hard, that it worked, but alongside with powerful features it was corrupted during redesign.

So now you Blender is nice ARTwork tool, but have to buy lot of third party stuff in order to make Blender compatible with CADwork.

Interesting video about Free/Opensource AEC.
Also about third-party Blender BIM development

I wonder why we have not seen a CAD-centric fork of Blender yet… it seems to be a very popular topic that doesn’t really get any attention from the main blender foundation, I imagine it would be a ripe opportunity for a band of CAD-minded developers. The other specialized forks seem to be doing very well- Armor Paint, UPBGE, maybe it’s time for BCAD? It would be nice to have a modern and robust open source alternative to Fusion, MOI.

As far as I know, there were many such realizations (such as Fliud designer, Blender Mechanical, Archipack, etc).
But the problem is that CAD development is not feature-based but system-based, and such things are usually tightly centralized.
Around someone like Ton Roosendaal or Yorik van Havre…

Stupid question from someone who is rooted in rendering and game art production
Is Blender for CAD useful enough as mainly a polymodeler?
CAD is based on volume surfaces and NURBS, isn’t it?
(I obviously have very little idea about CAD construction, yet. :smiley: )

Nurbs are needed mostly for G1…G4 surface precision, ACIS is needed for infinite booleans and solid precision, so the most work that doesnot require ultraprecision, like architecture, can be done in polymodeling.


I would add that CAD modeling tools would benefits in all kind of hard surfaces modeling and even a bit to all kind of modeling and not strictly to architectural design. But i’m afraid that the devs are not focusing in any way in that direction. They said many times that they want to make film with the studio and take mainly the feedback and the direction of the development from it… And that’s a reality.

Since many years we claim that we need better hard surfaces modeling tools and it is most of the time ignored… even right click select shows that people want these tools. But once again ignored… that’s sad
Regarding the 2021 roadmap I can clearly see that it will not happens soon. The main focus of development is related to animations and films.

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Yep. That is true. I do welcome quite a lot of tools that are important to film and animation as well but it seems to be the focus most of the time with the Open Movie projects going on. Personally I’d also hope for game specific workflows and toolsets.
Ultimately though many tools at least are depending on each other and can benefit at least in parts.

Has this been shelved? I’ve been looking forward to the basepoint functionality for ages, ever since your addon was taken offline, and I can’t help but wonder why communication has gone dark!
Can we get an update?
I see it’s been moved to ’ Long-Term Scope (Inactive)’, but hope that it hasn’t simply been abandoned!

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Deveopers made a nice realization, but they got doubts about design.

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What’s your opinion about the design, Paul? I remember your proposal. My usecases are far too simplistic to have an opinion on it, but it seemed very well thought-out

In my opinion when I tested build with feature was that it is quite perfect.

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@mano-wii Can you clarify why this fell by the wayside? It’s an important project, and it seems to have been well-realised… what happened?

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I also liked a lot, using the modal key (B) to swap between standart transform and with basepoint is very fast and straightforward. It also looks very similar to modifier keys of the knife operation (in edit mode).

It’s a bit sad seeing it moved to Long-Term Scope (Inactive). Hope to see it in official build, maybe as a experimental feature in the near future.


A while ago, @ermo and myself developed Precision Drawing Tools, that now ships with Blender and has for some time. This project is not complete yet as we realise there are still many aspects of CAD oriented workflows that need to be incorporated into Blender, not least of which is making 2D drawings. We have done some work in this area, but are yet to finalise an exact requirements document.

So, to that end, if anyone wants to suggest improvements and additions to PDT, please let either of us know here, or start an “Issue” on the PDT GitHub page.

GitHub - Clockmender/Precision-Drawing-Tools: Precision Drawing Tools (PDT) Add-on for Blender 2.8 and above

You will also find the Wiki there, which gives an insight into the sort of things it does currently. I have other projects on the go, so have quite a heavy schedule, considering I am retired!!! Anyway, either of us know if you have any more requirements for this project that you would like us to build in.

Cheers, Clock.