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Discussion Starter #1
Hi MT Stringer & Other Sketchup Masters.....

In this short Sketchup Video by David Heim - he demonstrates how to draw a small table in less than 4 minutes.
Great video - have learned lots by watching it. However, I am stuck on a couple of his steps. Can you help?

Question #1 - At 00:12 of the video - He makes the leg longer and says "I do this in 2 steps, because I want that line around the top".
a - how do you keep a line around the top? I didn't see a way to essentially make the leg into 2 parts...
b - Why would you want to do this?

Question #2 - at about 00:50 of the video, he has a leg and an apron and proceeds to copy those, rotate them and then use the /3x to make 3 copies of these to form a small table.
I have tried to do this....Can't make it happen - I spent a couple hours last night trying to rotate this leg exactly the way he is rotating it so I can copy it 3 times......The key to this may be the guide lines that he has running under the leg/apron.
At 00:58 he says "Now I can use these guidelines down here to copy/rotate both components"
Now - I am relatively new to Sketchup, but can anyone tell me how to use the copy/rotate tool to make this happen?
Is there some kind of "shadow" guide lines that can be drawn to make the rotate operation happen correctly?
He doesn't actually demonstrate creating the actual guide lines - does he have some option enabled?
When he starts the video, he has 2 sets of guide lines going in each direction by default....
I understand that once he rotates it correctly - he can use the 90 and then the 3x keywords to finish it up
It is driving me mad.....

I have watched many different videos on the Rotate tool. It has not been intuitive for me to learn this Rotate tool, so I need some help
If you can explain it to me - that would be awesome!

Thanks Alot


Super Moderator
5,772 Posts
Question #1...

He made the leg in two steps so he could later (about the 3 minute mark) taper the leg. The taper stops at that line and does not go all the way to the top of the leg.

Question #2

I am not that experienced with the Rotate Tool. At times, it gives me fits also.

And I don't usually make square tables so I make a leg component, duplicate it and then make the stretcher to fit between them. Once I have them made, I can copy them and move them to the new location. Usually have to use the Flip along tool so any changes made to the components will be mirrored. And add two more stretchers to make the table frame whole.

Sorry, that is all I have I can share.
Good luck.

Note: I might have to try those guide lines. I think he pulled a fast on on us by not saying what he did to set up the project before he started the video...or I missed it.

127 Posts
You will note that in the video he always says I'm typing in the actual values. So he must have done the whole thing on paper first to be able to do this.

I attach one project as sold to client as per skecthup and the finished article, but there was a lot of paperwork involved after sketchup and before build.

I would not want anyone to be put off using sketchup by viewing this video.

My theory is use the tool as long as it is useful, but if you have to fight with it(sketchup) stop and use a different tool(pencil and paper)


6 Posts
sketchup problem

I'm just a learner when it comes to sketchup but I believe he's using shortcut keys to accomplish this task.

When you go to rotate something,you must first triple click the object to select it,push "G" to make it a component and press enter.Then push"Q" to rotate.this will give you the protractor to place at the center of rotation.
Hope this helps.

Search "youtube" for "Sketchup " and "Jay Bates"..........he does a super job of explaining sketchup tricks


1,651 Posts
@nsecrist Nate, he makes the leg in two sections with the line so he can taper just the lower section. To do this, using the extrude tool, extrude the first part, then press the control key and extrude the second. The control key should put a plus (+) sign next to the cursor so you know it's going to add a section.

The rotate uses the x and y guidelines as the center. First select both components, the leg and the stretcher. Then select the rotate tool. Click on the center point of the guidelines, making sure the protractor is blue for the vertical direction, then click one of the lower leg corners. Now rotate 90 degrees and click. The type x3 in the text box to tell it to do that a totla of 3 times.

He had already drawn the guidelines in the model, 3 for each axis. The guidelines are drawn once you have decided on the width and length of your square table. You draw a guideline for the left, right and center, on the green axis and then the same for the front, rear and middle on the red axis. The pivot point is the center/middle crossover point.
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