Race Car Design Software

Race Car Design Software

Race Car Modeling/3D Modeling

Software for creating models of your race car concept or detailed design.

3D Solid modelers provide the ability to create parts, connect them to make assemblies, and ultimately a complete vehicle if desired. If they are “parametric”, part dimensions and properties can be adjusted using parameters or even other parts, enabling things like auto-sizing.

3D surface modelers enable the creation of what are called NURBS curves, which form complex flowing shapes that are useful in creating stylized bodywork. Some modeling software provides both solid and surface modeling capabilities.

2D CAD software provides 2D drafting capabilities.

Autocad 360

A free CAD software from Autodesk which runs on desktop or laptop via your web browser, or download the iOS or Android app to access it on your smartphone or tablet.

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Blender

A free and open source 3D creation suite primarily used for surface modeling such as that used to style bodywork and visualize race vehicles.

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FreeCAD

FreeCAD is a parametric 3D modeler. Parametric modeling allows you to easily modify your design by going back into your model history and changing its parameters. FreeCAD is open-source and highly customizable, scriptable and extensible.

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LibreCAD

Free open-source 2D CAD application for Windows, Linux and Mac

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QCAD

Free open source 2D CAD for Windows, Linux, and Mac.

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Aerodynamics Design and Simulation/CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics)

Software for simulating the flow of fluids (primarily air in the case of race car design) around a 2D or 3D object. Frequently used for testing whole body shapes, wings, ducts and underbody floors on race cars.

ANSYS Student (Fluid Physics)

Free use of CFD simulation as well as other ANSYS engineering products including Structural Physics and simulation workbench. Free renewable student license good for 6 months at a time. At this writing, supported only on Win 7 or newer 64 bit OS.

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Autodesk Flow Design

A virtual wind tunnel that enables visualization of airflows around vehicles and objects with support for a variety of CAD file types. Available in commercial and free student version as of this writing.

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EasyCFD

CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) Software for analysis of aerodynamics. Provides import of DXF or other geometry point data.

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Elmer FEM

Elmer is a free open source multiphysical simulation software. Elmer includes physical models of fluid dynamics, structural mechanics, electromagnetics, heat transfer and acoustics, for example. These are described by partial differential equations which Elmer solves by the Finite Element Method (FEM).

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Flowsquare CFD

A free CFD software. According to the developer "Flowsquare is a two-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software for unsteady, non-reactive/reactive flows. The aim of this software is to provide a handy CFD environment so that more people can get to know what CFD is like and simulate flows for their educational and/or academic interests"

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OpenFOAM For Windows

A free CFD software package that utilizes OpenFOAM (originally designed for Linux) along side a Microsoft Windows user interface.

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simFlow

A CFD software that is available as both a free node-limited version and an unlimited commercial version.

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Chassis/Structural Design/FEA (Finite Element Analysis)

Software for analyzing the structure of a 3D model by constraining the model and applying loads. Often used in race car design for analyzing torsional rigidity and load bearing.

ANSYS Student (Structural Physics)

Free use of structural simulation as well as other ANSYS engineering products including Fluid Physics and simulation workbench. Free renewable student license good for 6 months at a time. At this writing, supported only on Win 7 or newer 64 bit OS.

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Autodesk Finite Element Analysis

3D Finite element analysis software including free education version for students.

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Elmer FEM

Elmer is a free open source multiphysical simulation software. Elmer includes physical models of fluid dynamics, structural mechanics, electromagnetics, heat transfer and acoustics, for example. These are described by partial differential equations which Elmer solves by the Finite Element Method (FEM).

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LISA

LISA is a free node-limited finite element analysis package for Windows with an integrated modeler, multi-threaded solver and graphical post-processor. A commercial version is also available.

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M3d FEM

Free Finite element software for analysis of structures such as race car chassis or other mechanical objects.

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Suspension Design

Software for designing and analyzing suspension systems and geometry. Some software includes kinematic capabilities that simulate vehicle dynamics using the designed suspension.

OptimumKinematics

Suspension design software that enables 3D suspension geometry definition, setups and simulations. OptimumG also sells vehicle dynamics simulation and tire modeling software programs.

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Racing Aspirations Suspension Geometry Calculator

Online web-based suspension geometry calculator

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Susprog3D

3D suspension design software for more than 40 variations on independent and live axle suspensions. Visualization of the suspension motion, centers, tires and attachment points.

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Kinematics

Software for simulating motion physics in either 3D or 2D. Used in race car and automobile engineering for problem solving and simulating vehicle behaviors on or off road.

CarSim Mechanical Simulation

Commercial-level software (also in use at Universities used) used to model full vehicle dynamics.

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Working Model 2D

A two-dimensional motion and physics simulation tool that includes motion sources (motors, torques, etc.), and mechanical elements (gears, levers, etc.) and physics (gravity). Very useful for solving 2D "what-if" problems without constructing a physical model.

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Project/Process Management

Software for managing tasks and schedules, in either a single person or group collaboration environment. Useful in race car design and construction for documenting tasks and timelines if need be.

Freedcamp

Free online project management and collaboration site

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GanttProject

Another free project scheduling and management application to manage tasks and schedules for your race car project.

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ProjectLibre

A free open source replacement for Microsoft Project. Useful in managing tasks and schedules for your race car project. Run on Windows, Linux, Mac and other OS.

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TaskJuggler

A free, open source project management software for managing the tasks and schedule for your race car project.

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Miscellaneous

Software that provides general usefulness for race car designers and builders.

LibreOffice

A free open source office suite compatible with Microsoft Office and available for Windows, Mac and Linux. It includes a MS Visio-like application called "Draw" which can be used to create diagrams in addition to the usual office applications for word processing and spreadsheet.

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OpenOffice

Free open source Microsoft Office compatible suite for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Includes an MS Visio alternative program called Draw in addition to the usual productivity applications like word processing and spreadsheet

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Suggest a Sofware

Have you found a great piece of software that has benefited you in your race car design and construction, but isn’t shown above? Please let us know! (We especially love free stuff!)

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