Friday, January 16, 2009

Dynamic Components: Sheer SketchUp Magic

Dynamic Components represent a groundbreaking new development in SketchUp that allows you to do all sorts of things with components. For example, a window can be inserted that contains parameters for the maximum size of glass panes. The component can be stretched to fit, whereby the component with then auto-configure itself to the maximum pane sizes and resize the mullions and transoms to your settings (according to how the DC is designed/ controlled by you or the originator) The controls can be hidden or e.g. in the form of a pull-down menu.

Here are some tutorial videos

Here is a link to some tutorial drawings about how to use DCs

DCs can also be used to e.g. Configure stairs- Just re-scale a stairs component and it will reconfigure itself to your set tread sizes, risers, and even have the maximum 16 risers to a straight, angled or dogleg landing.

If you are carrying out multiple copies of detailed components, it may be well worth your while learning how to create dynamic components for SketchUp. Note: DCs can be used in the Free SketchUp version but may only be created in the Pro version.

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Sunday, January 4, 2009

SketchUp: What can't it do?

More reasons to use SketchUp as a serious draughting tool:

Layout 2 (which comes with SketchUp 7) now allows SketchUp drawings to be converted into vector lines inside the Layout program. These lines can be controlled individually or collectively to provide the exact lineweights required. This tackles one of the last few barriers to replacing CAD with SketchUp. The drawing below is a sample detail drawing at 1/20 scale

In the drawing under, some of the lines have been converted into vector lines and new lineweights are selected for each individually or collectively (the lines are grouped according to the original groupings in the SketchUp drawing.) Note the thickness of the line delineating the foundation. This thickness was selected within the Layout program itself. Colour and linetype can also be controlled instantaneously.

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