Tutorials by catamountain

 Faux Dynamic Star  
 Multiple leader lines using 'Paste in Place"  
Time to rock  
Traditional Cabinet Pull  

Tutorials by George Knowles

Creating Real World Shadows  
 Printing to Scale  

Tutorials by jimhami42

SketchUp Is [not] a Surface Modeler

How do I draw a sphere?


Help Center Tutorial | Video Tutorial


Easy. Download one from the 3D Warehouse :-). If you would still like to make one yourself, feel free to click on the Help Center or Video Tutorial links above.


- SketchUp Guide Tommy



How do I draw a rectangle or circle (or polygon) oriented vertically?


You’ve probably already figured out that if you’re drawing on an existing face, the shape-drawing tools adopt the orientation of that face. But if you’re drawing out in open space, the shape-drawing tools orient themselves based on the direction of your line of sight (camera angle) in relation to the horizon and axis system and the location on-screen of the tool itself.

 If the horizon is high on your screen, or off-screen above it, and the drawing tool is low on the screen, that means that your line of sight is facing predominantly downward. In that situation, the shape-drawing tool is oriented to draw on a horizontal plane—specifically the ground plane. The Circle tool and Polygon tools appear blue in that orientation, meaning the axis of the circle or polygon is parallel to the blue system axis, which is vertical.

 If the horizon is low on the screen (lower than about two-thirds of the way up), and the drawing tool is high or somewhat high, that means that your line of sight is predominantly horizontal, and the shape-drawing tools will draw shapes that are oriented vertically. If you are facing in a predominantly north-south direction, the Circle and Polygon tools will turn green and will draw on the Blue-Red origin plane. If you are facing in a predominantly east-west direction, the Circle and Polygon tools will turn red and will draw on the Blue-Green origin plane. The Rectangle tool will draw with the same orientation, but, of course, it does not change color.

You should experiment to see how different combinations of camera angle and tool location affect shape orientation.


- Gully Foyle



How can I maximize the drawing area, using a 'shortcut' button to hide toolbars?

There are two parts to being able to toggle a maximized drawing area with a single key:
  • Create a custom toolbar with all your favorite tools on it.
  • Create a hotkey to toggle that toolbar.
  •  Note that this is a Windows only feature.


Start by building yourself a single toolbar that has all the tools you use (your own version of "View > Toolbars > Getting Started" or "View > Toolbars > Large Tool Set") using Jim Foltz's Custom Toolbar Plugin.  Turn off all your other toolbars.

If you want to try out the rest of this idea without building a toolbar first, just turn off all toolbars except the Large Tool Set and treat that as your "custom" toolbar for the sake of experimentation.
Now, with only the one toolbar visible, go to "Window > Preferences > Shortcuts."  In the Function list, scroll all the way down to View/Toolbars/... (or type "bar" in the Filter field) and notice that all your toolbars are listed there, even the ones added by Plugins, including your Custom toolbar that you created with Jim's plugin (this powerful tool really needs a better name so we can all talk about it more easily).
Select your Custom toolbar (or the Large Tool Set) and in the "Add Shortcut" field, type your hotkey.  I used Alt+T because it can be typed with my left hand only while I keep my right hand on the mouse.
Click the + button.  If your hotkey is already in use, SU will tell you what it is already assigned to and let you cancel the change.  Alt+T is not assigned by default.
Click OK and you're done.  Now you can toggle your custom toolbar, your only toolbar, on and off using your hotkey.
If you have two sets of tools, your most common ones and the specialized ones you need only in certain circumstances in this project, create a second toolbar and put it on a second hotkey, something like Alt+G or Alt-B, if you're using Alt+T for the main one.
I don't think SU allows you to eliminate the File menu bar at the top or the Status bar at the bottom, so I think this is the maximum real estate you can get with SU.
- August
Subpages (3): catamountain Geo jimhami42