Confusion360. oh, so confused

Hi all. Maybe its because it’s 3:35am, but I am absolutely flummixed.

I am trying to go through the tutorial on how to make a laser cut laptop stand. I am trying to just understand the basics on how to use Fusion360 for my Glowforge.

I have done what the teacher has done a dozen times, starting new files as I go, but I can’t seem to make the mental connection to how the sketch gets started. Here is a very bad 3am video on my problem. I hope some of you will endulge me with an explanation of why, after doing what seems to me to be exctly what he does, it does not come out the same?!?!?

Thank you kindly.


A few things I’ve noticed.

  • Fusion 360 has changed quite a bit. The constraint icons particularly. For example, perpendicular used to be those little boxes. Today they look like upside down T’s.

  • The first thing you point at and say, “look at this crazy thing”. It’s a constraint. That particular one is “coincident”. For example, it can mean, hold this point on that line. In your case, it means the start point of your line and the origin point are coincident (the line is stuck there).

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I think your result matches his, but in the new UI.

Wait… So I’m not crazy? Even though it’s 5:42am and I’m still playing with my new toy?

Thanks for the info. There are a few other things that are driving me crazy. Like after he finishes setting his constraints, he clicks End Sketch and it goes automatically to this nice 3D view. Mine just stays put. I found that clicking the house by the cube brought me to the same point, but it makes me think I’m doing something wrong.


Thanx for reminding me of something important with my continued learning of F360, if the video is over 6 months old it is for concepts only! The program evolves that quickly.

No, you are not doing anything wrong, it is just that your preferences are set different than his. Click on your username in the upper right and you will find a preferences line, click that and a dialog will pop up with lots of things for you to set the way you want. As you slowly go from using Confusion360 to Nirvana360 you will want to go back to this and change things to fit your personal style. I have mine set like yours is as poping to an isometric view often messes up what I was trying to do. As you have discovered, it is but one click to go to the “home” view.

Something else you need to know now. For any one thing, you want to do there are usually about 4 ways to get there! For most of these, there is not a right way and a wrong way, just the way you like to work. For a few things, there are “best practices”, that simply means that you will save yourself a lot of trouble fixing things if you will do it this way.
I like videos too but if you want something that you don’t have to start and stop the video for, I have some written tutorials in the matrix. They are about 6 short lessons that at the end you will have made a finger jointed box. They are not so much about the box though as learning the basics and a few best practices like creating components early.


Fantastic. I will check them out.

Yah. They moved to the “T” icon from the square. Constraints are nice, but can make your drawing behave weird, especially when you are deleting lines. Also having a lot of constraints puts quite a load on the system, as it is constantly trying to maintain all the constraints. Mirroring an object creates a ton of constraints. If you don’t need them you can deleted them by choosing the “Select” Menu item, and under Selection filters disable all, then enable geometry constraints, consider dimensions as well, I put my dimensions in after I am done, I find them a bit cluttery while I’m actually drawing.

Another thing to consider disabling is “Design history” Secondary click the first item in the design browser tree and select “Do not capture design History.”


My experience has been that not enough constraints make things get weird when you go to adjusting things with dimensions.
I think the sweet spot is just enough to make the sketch “fully constrained” but no more. When a sketch is fully constrained it will turn from blue to black and at that point won’t do weird imposable things like lines crossing that are not supposed to cross and such.

I’m sorry, I know I say there are no wrong ways but to me, this is like saying “the ship has so much more room if you remove the lifeboats”. :scream:

I absolutely don’t mean any of this as a personal attack, we just disagree on these particular things.

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I have not opened fusion360 as yet but apparently need to. In AutoCAD you can operate that way or pick the one you want when you want it. Inkscape has similar but keeps jumping to the nearest case when that is not what you want and goes to endpoint when you wanted perpendicular ( or the reverse). if they are nearby. Obviously I don’t know if that is possible but it would be good to know when I go there.

I usually run with design history on, but occasionally it messes up, making it difficult to continue. I had to shut it off the other day when it caused a problem displaying a component while in sketch mode. It’s a known issue. I rarely use the timeline, probably because I don’t know what I’m doing. I learn every time I open it, and it has done everything I have asked it to do so far.

I’m pretty sure you need to turn it off if you are using the sheet metal engine too.

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All I can suggest is to keep playing with it. There is a certain technique, or approach, to designing on a computer. Each piece of software tends to have its own way of doing things, but after a while, you start to get a “feel” for how to create things in the virtual world, regardless of which tool you are using. It’s similar to working with wood, there are many ways to shape it, none necessarily better than another, but each able to do more than what you might expect.


I’m glad to learn @jonnyvermont that I am not the only one that is confused!!!

My version does not act anything like the videos I have been viewing! My thinking is that the person making the video must be using all sorts of keyboard commands that are invisible in the video and not telling me what they are doing out-of-sight!

Love your statement ‘Confusion360 to Nirvana 360’ @markevans36301!

I hope I get there soon!

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Lars has a series for beginners where he uses a clean install.

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