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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-24-2015, 12:08 PM Thread Starter
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Default Best way to learn Sketchup

I'd tried various ways to learn Sketchup but my output was difficult and spotty. Then I got the Fine Woodworking sketchup for woodworkers and learned it pretty well in a long weekend. Fine Woodworking’s Google SketchUp® Guide for Woodworkers - The Basics Fine Woodworking’s Google SketchUp® Guide for Woodworkers: The Basics - Woodworking - Design - Instant Download - Taunton Store

It contains a video and a copy of the video transcript. I just followed the steps and created my own cabinet in a weekend (stayed up late several nights). Printed out the transcript for later reference. It costs $13, money well spent.

I've been able to do a lot with it since, though there are a few things I will work on next, like putting on joinery and fasteners. I've made plans from articles and even found an error in one of the plans. Whenever I do a project now I make my own plans and it's pretty quick.

I'd tried various of the free approaches and none of them worked near as well, though I plan to consult those other videos for some additional tips. Highly recommended.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-24-2015, 12:51 PM
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Thanks Katie. I gotta try it.

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-24-2015, 01:35 PM
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Yes ma'am. I bought that download a couple of months ago. Very helpful. Dave is an expert to say the least.

I found a free add-in that will display a grid on the drawing surface. Very helpful when drawing as the your tool will snap to the grid lines. The default is 12 inch grid squares.

Look in the Extension Warehouse. Search for "Grid Tool".
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-24-2015, 02:37 PM
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Yeah, I use SU for every project. If you haven't already, check out the extension "cut list". It does a good job of listing all your components and sizes. Makes for a good check list as you are cutting things. It also gives you an ok sheet goods cut diagram though I can usually do better.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 07:41 AM
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Thanks for the "grid tool" tip Mike - do you know how to change the default spacing?
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 10:38 AM
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Hey, MT. The grid tool is a nice find. In general, I think I draw more guide lines than anything else.

Have you tried the "projections and guide tools" extension? I find it pretty useful. The "guide by division" tool allows you to create a centered guide between 2 lines - I use that a lot. Beats hunting for the midline snap point. And guides at intervals does 1/2 of what the grid tool does (only one dimension) but allows setting the interval distance. edit: it's not marked as compatible with 2015 but seems to work just fine.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 11:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wildwood View Post
Thanks for the "grid tool" tip Mike - do you know how to change the default spacing?
Rob, all you have to do is type in a different spacing on your keyboard.

1) Activate the grid tool from the menu.

2) Type in your spacing for the squares and press enter. You should see the number change in the spacing dialog box. Note: You don't have to click into the spacing box first, just punch in the change on the keyboard.

3) Draw your grid.

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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 11:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBa View Post
Hey, MT. The grid tool is a nice find. In general, I think I draw more guide lines than anything else.

Have you tried the "projections and guide tools" extension? I find it pretty useful. The "guide by division" tool allows you to create a centered guide between 2 lines - I use that a lot. Beats hunting for the midline snap point. And guides at intervals does 1/2 of what the grid tool does (only one dimension) but allows setting the interval distance. edit: it's not marked as compatible with 2015 but seems to work just fine.
Yes sir. I use guide lines a lot. To me, drawing is just like doing it out in the shop with a ruler and pencil. Once I figured that out, things got a lot easier.

I will check out that extension you mentioned.
Thanks.
Mike

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-26-2015, 12:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBa View Post
Hey, MT. The grid tool is a nice find. In general, I think I draw more guide lines than anything else.

Have you tried the "projections and guide tools" extension? I find it pretty useful. The "guide by division" tool allows you to create a centered guide between 2 lines - I use that a lot. Beats hunting for the midline snap point. And guides at intervals does 1/2 of what the grid tool does (only one dimension) but allows setting the interval distance. edit: it's not marked as compatible with 2015 but seems to work just fine.
Thanks Phil. I installed that extension, but only tried the divide by division tool. That works great for finding the center of the workpiece.

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-26-2015, 07:08 AM
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Rob, all you have to do is type in a different spacing on your keyboard.
Thanks Mike - I don't know why I didn't think of that!
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