Here is a list of best free CAD software for beginners for Windows. Using these CAD software, beginners can learn and create 3D and 2D models without knowing too much about CAD. All of these software are simple and easy to understand for beginners and novice users.
These CAD software are simple, but they do not lack any important feature and also serve advanced features for professional users. To create and design a 3D model, these software provides various base models (Cuboid, Cone, Sphere, etc.) along with various sculpting tools. All of these also let you use a mouse to operate tools that make designing more simpler. Apart from sculpting tools, you also get various view orientation tools to look 3D models from all angles. Once a model gets completed, you can save or export in STL, OBJ, DAE, FBX, etc. files.
My Favorite CAD Software for Beginners for Windows:
LeoCAD is my favorite software because it provides the simplest way to create a 3D model. Plus, it is very simple to understand and to operate that could prove really beneficial for beginners. In it, you also get a lot of predefined models of various different categories which let its users to create a design just by modifying the existing models.
You can also check out lists of best free CAD Viewer, CAM Software, and CAD software for Windows.
LeoCAD is free open source CAD software for beginners. It is one of the simplest CAD software that you can find for free. The main focus of this software is to let new users quickly create a 3D model without needing to know much about CAD and 3D Modeling. At the same time, it also offers a lot of features to satisfy the need of advanced users.
In this software, you get various solid model sections like Animal, Antenna, Bar, Container, Panel, Plant, Vehicle, Wedge, etc. In each section, you get various predefined 3D shapes related to that section. You can easily drag and drop shapes to the canvas and join them through mouse to quickly create a 3D structure. Along with shapes, a Colors window is also present in it to quickly assign different colors to different models.
This software stores all the steps performed during 3D model creation, which you can access from its Timeline Section. Using Timeline Section, you can also move to any previous step or to the next step of the model creation process. This helps novice users to easily produce a design. Besides this, simple tools such as movement, snap, rotation snap, relative transformation, etc. to change model orientation, model position, model angle, etc., are also present in the toolbar. After creating a model, you can easily export the model as 3D Studio, BrickLink, Collada, CSV, HTML, POV_Ray, etc. formats.
In general, it is one of the easiest software to create 3D models for beginners.
Home Page Download Page
k-3D is another free CAD software for beginners. It is an intuitive, consistent, and powerful CAD software which fulfils the needs of both beginners and professionals. In it, you can create both 3D models and 3D animations. Beginners can use its simple Toolbar Tools (scale, rotate, polygon edges, curves, etc.) along with Create menu tools (array, bicubic patch, bilinear patch, NURBS, etc.) to quickly create a 3D model. Not just creating design from scratch, you can also import and modify predefined 3D models through its Modify tab. General shapes to start the 3D designing process like a polygonal cube, polygonal cylinder, sphere primitive, etc., are also present on the toolbar.
The creation of 3D animation is also not very hard in it and novice users can also make simple animations using its dedicated Animation menu present in the Create menu.
The software also lets you save 3D models and animations in various formats like Wavefront OBJ, GTS, K3D, etc.
Overall, it is a good CAD software for beginners. This software also supports plugins which might come in handy for advanced users who need more tools to create precise 3D models.
Home Page Download Page
3D Slash is a free CAD software for beginners. This software has both online and offline versions through which you can create 3D models. It uses a simple sculpting approach to create 3D models. In this approach, you get 3D cuboid models as a base with various sculpting tools. By sculpting the cuboid using Hammer, Plots, Lines, and Curve tools, you can shape the cuboid into a desired 3D shape. To easily sculpt the base 3D model from all angles, this software also provides orientation sliders. Plus, you also get a zoom tool that helps you create small and precise carvings over the base model. After creating the desired 3D structure, you can save it as STL, OBJ, DAE, FBX, etc. formats.
Note: This software requires a 3D Splash account to work. Plus, some of its advanced features are locked in this free version of 3D Splash. It also automatically uploads all your content and designs to its server.
Home Page Download Page
Wings3D is yet another free CAD software for beginners for Windows. It is also a polygon modeler that uses subdivision modeling method to create 3D models. In this software, you get various inbuilt 3D shapes like Cube, Cylinder, Sphere, Cone, Octahedron, etc. You can use any of the available shapes as the base and also use multiple shapes at a time to create complex 3D models. In order to sculpt the base shape into the desired 3D model, you can use various sculpting tools like Extrude, Extract, Sweep, Inset, Intrude, Flatten, Bump, Lift, Hole, etc. All the shapes and required tools can be accessed easily from the right-click menu. Apart from sculpting tools, some view orientation tools to view the model from all directions are also present. In it, you can easily move to any previous or next step using undo/redo options which is again beneficial.
Overall, it is a simple yet powerful CAD software that can be really helpful for beginners to learn about the basics of CAD. Another handy property of this software is its ability to export a 3D model in various 3D file formats such as 3DS, DAE, RWX, STL, etc.
Home Page Download Page
3D Builder is a free Windows 10 app for beginners that lets novice users create desired 3D models without knowing too much about CAD. This software allows quick 3D model creation as it takes external 3D object, image, and 3D scanned copy of an object as input. Besides this, it also provides various inbuilt 3D shapes like a cylinder, cone, cube, pyramid, torus, hexagon, wedge, etc. to create 3D models from scratch. To convert the base model to desired 3D shape, you can use its simple editing tools like simplify, split, smooth, emboss, hollow, etc. Plus, to provide a realistic look to a 3D model, you can use tools of its View menu through which you can add shadow, shading, color, reflection, etc., to the model. After creating a 3D model, you can directly 3D print it or save it in various files like 3MF, STL, OBJ, PLY, GLB, and GLTF.
This software also supports touchscreen devices that further simplifies the 3D model creation process. Overall, it is a very handy software for beginners who want to quickly and easily design a 3D model. Home Page Download Page
FreeCAD is free and open source CAD software for beginners. This software is suitable for both beginners and professionals. Using it, you can design machine parts, architecture, ships, and meshes. To create different types of designs, you get different sections like the part design, architecture design, ship design, etc. In each section, you get design specific tools. Creating a complete 3D model from the scratch is slightly complex, because of which this software also offers various predefined models. Beginners can make changes on predefined models to learn about 3D modeling and create 3D models with ease. Various tutorial links describing the process to make 3D models are also provided by this software. After creating a 3D design, you can save it as PDF, OCA, STL, POLY, JSON, DWG, DXF, etc. files.
Apart from above tools, this software also offers handy features like Macro Recording, Macro Editing, Scene Inspector, Dependency Graphs, and more. Overall, it is a complete CAD software that helps beginners to create a 3D design with ease, at the same time it also offers every essential tools for professional CAD users. Home Page Download Page
Strata Design 3D
Strata Design 3D is a free and feature-rich CAD software for beginners. Using this software, beginners can learn about various aspects of the CAD and 3D modeling. Not only for beginners, but is also quite handy software for professionals.
In this software, you get a multiple window interface that allows you to work on multiple connected projects at a time. It also offers all features to create a 3D model from the scratch or create a model by modifying an existing or imported 3D model. All the basic tools to start the structure creation like Base Shapes (Cuboid, Rectangle, Cone, etc.) along with Sculpting Tools (Pen Curve, extrude, subtract, reflect) are present on the floating side toolbar. In addition to that, all essential sections to give a realistic look to a model such as Textures, Shapes, Backgrounds, FX, Gels, etc., are also provided by this software.
Once the 3D model gets completed, you can also render it after specifying the light intensity, shadow, transparency, etc. ray-tracing parameters. Both rendered or non rendered models can be saved in various formats such as XWF, DXF, VRML, Design 3D, etc. Home Page Download Page
LibreCAD is another free open source CAD software for beginners. It is a simple 2D CAD software through which beginners can easily create simple 2D shapes and structures. In it, you can easily create 2D structural designs using its Tools menu. The tools menu is filled with multiple tools like Line, Circle, Curve, Ellipse, Polyline, and more. You can easily select one tool at a time and start making shapes and designs. All the designing can be done in it with the help of a mouse. It also supports layers, hence, you can put and combine designs of multiple layers into one. Besides this, some View related tools like Zoom, Auto Zoom, Previous View, Redraw, etc., can also be found in it.
Apart from various available tools, this software also supports external plugins which allow you to enhance the capability of this software. After making a model, you can preview it using its Print preview option and directly print through its Print option. Additionally, you also get the option to export the 2D model in SVG, PDF, and in various Image Formats. In general, it is quite simple and basic software that makes it ideal software for beginners and for novice users. Home Page Download Page