I tried using DXF export in Blender 2.49, and the output is full of major errors, like objects in the wrong place. I reported this in the bug tracker at http://projects.blender.org/tracker/index.php?func=detail&aid=20185&group_id=9&atid=125 with uploaded examples. These are simple cases - meshes only, just lines and circles. At first I thought the problem was related to grouping, so I removed all the grouping and it still didn’t work. I cleaned up everything to the point that it’s a trivial 2D drawing with lines and circles, and still can’t get a valid DXF export.
All I need is to get out usable 2D information for import into a CAM program, where I can edit further before cutting metal. But even that doesn’t work.
Is there some trick, or set of restrictions under which DXF export actually works? Or does nobody use this feature?
John, I think most of the effort of late has been on reliable DXF import rather than export. However, some searching here in the Python forum may give you some more (independant) options for this, or at the very least some insight from the experience of others.
However, an alternative is to seek another format that your CAM app imports. Or even utilizing an intermediate format + a translation app to get more reliable results. For example, I’ve always had good luck with the STL format (mostly for import) so this might be an option for you. I know blender-exported STLs have made it into FreeMill okay for me.
Frankly, I’m a bit surprised that you’re using blender for your 2D drawing for CAM at all. Its not the optimal solution, is it? Its very handy for many CAM-related things (such as depth maps for use with image-to-Gcode apps) but for 2D? I would love to see what you’re attempting!
Another solution that you might find interesting or useful is HeeksCAD by Dan Heeks. He’s got a CAM component that, while still early in development, has some decent functionality even now.
Are you using the “DXF” or “Autodesk DXF” option? I occasionally export drawings in the dxf format and have had no trouble with the latter script.
Mzungu, in case you’re curious: when designing buildings, I work both with paper and with Blender. Eventually the result of both should end up in CAD drawings. Although 2D export of a 3D model rarely results in a pretty drawing instantly, it still saves time compared to redrawing the whole shape in 2D.