complete newbie question-wooden or steel tentlike onstruction

I am a complete idiot in 3d drawing or cad programs. I would like to make a tent-like construction from wooden or steel poles. Constructing is no
problem to me, but to calculate the connectionpoint edges of the wood or steel: no clue at all. I do not want any extra connections, i like steel rods, cut to the exact edge and welded together most. Cutting and welding i can do. Is this possible with a probgram like SW? Even for a (smart) newbie like me? Or should i turn to a professional CAD-drawer? Could anyone turn my head in the right direction?
Rutger
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You lost me... connection point edges? If you can construct it, you should have the edges?
Sounds like a layout issue or the type of pole intersection or connectors used?
Hmm... well, I'd suggest, if you are not doing this, to layout the the tent construction using 3D Sketches and planes? And add your connectors at the ends of your sketch layout to insure no more connection point edges are used??
I don't know, I'm just guessing...
..
Rutger wrote:

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I'll try to clear things up: at the top of the 'tent' 4 poles come together, at one point. Cutting the metal or wood in two orientations (45 degrees and 90 minus the degrees of the slope of the roof) you get a very beautiful ansd solid connection.
Like this:
| | | | | |_________ \ / / \_________
Now it will not be a regular shape with 4 walls, but an irregular shape with 7 walls.

make a

welding i

me?
in
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I still don't get it but I'm sure it's simple..
As a reference site,.. which of these union are similar to your question?
http://www.duratarp.com/peak%20roof%20fitting.htm#P3
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Rutger wrote:

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connectors
no
wood or

steel
like
head
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Well, that site is obviously a company selling the corners and I do not know of a site which has a tut on pipe/cut/unions/welds? Some else might know?
I'll post a image and model(s) which might help but I'm not sure if you can use it in the SW eval?
http://www.zxys.com/swparts/4union.png
http://www.zxys.com/swparts/4union.zip
Someone here might have another one using the new 2004 weldment features... I have not used it yet (I may try it later?).
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Rutger wrote:

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I don't think he actually has the program Paul -he just wants to work out some difficult angles for saw cuts at the corners so he can weld bits together into a frame(?)....in which case someone with CAD can definitely help him...a lot cheaper than buying it.
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Oops... yep, sounds right now. :-/
Sorry, Rutger. So, yes, SW or most any 3D program can solve this problem.
BTW, there are a lot of cheap 3D programs and some freeware or time limited programs out there.
And, if it is something simple, I'm sure someone can help you. (of if you can agree with a price for helping?)
..
neil wrote:

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You are completely right. About program and about workflow... I looked at the program (evaluation) and concluded that it might be a little bit over the top.
Rutger
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so you have an evaluation of SW2003/04? but you would like/need some basic help using the program tools? have you read the help section? SW is quite capable of drawing the geometry-with a bit of time learning you can do it yourself - it would help to talk to/look over the shoulder of ,someone who uses it. anyone near you? however the simplest way for you to do something that doesn't need an engineers calculations might be to pull out some scrap materials and just do a bit of experimenting with a corner until you are happy with your general approach. I did a repair job on a mangled stockcar frame where I had to cut the front end off and make new bits to fit as I went -used a plasma cutter and a grinder a lot. suggest you start by laying up your 7 sides on a big floor and making the pyramid after that, then stick some legs under it. to help you out if you have 2m sides a circle fitting inside that will be 4.153m dia. the angle between sides is about 128.5 deg, a circle going though the points will be 4.609.5m dia hope this helps neil
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