PDF to SKP Conversion

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There are many times when you want to import existing information into Sketchup in order to incorporate it with your model. PDF is a very common file format, and you'll find many architectural drawings are shared in PDF format as well as most product data manuals. Currently, you cannot import a PDF directly into Sketchup on the Windows version so the usual way to import something at least is to convert the PDF file into a raster image.

In this SketchUp tutorial, we'll introduce a free tool that you can use to convert PDF's to DXF files, which you can import into Sketchup Pro.

Gothic Window #2 - A Simple Tracery

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In our previous tutorial, we created our first Gothic Window - however it was just the opening and a basic frame. Now, in this tutorial, we are going to add a simple tracery - practically a sort of mullion division in "Perpendicular Style" where only the top part of the tracery will be a little bit more complex.

In this SketchUp tutorial, we are going to use Solid tools (or Intersection for Free users) and some linear arrays to evenly distribute the mullions. Very precise moving and alignment is the key of this part.

Modelling a Gothic Window #1

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This SketchUp tutorial is the first in the series about Gothic architecture. Now we shall only model the basic opening, the splayed embrasure, a basic frame and create the necessary components so that the window will cut holes into walls later correctly.

In this tutorial, we'll make special use of the Scale tool and its modification keys (namely the Ctrl key) to be able to model efficiently. The only plugin used are Weld by Rich Wilson.

Modelling a Slanted Cone

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"I'm trying to find a way an easy way to draw a slanted cone based on the known radius of the base, a known height, and a known vertical and horizontal angle at which I'd like the cone to lean."

A forum post for which we definitely do not need a plugin but can be done in a couple of very easy steps. In this tutorial, we shall follow some very basic tips how to enter exact dimensions and how to move vertices snapping to guide lines.

Building a Dome - Part 2

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We have seen how to build the "base" of our dome in this previous tutorial. There we got to the point where we established a so called "hanging dome" by various means of intersecting geometry.

In this current tutorial, we shall add different, further elements that have made great domes of architecture history what they are now although each has its functional role, too.

In this tutorial, we are going to use the very basic SketchUp tools like the Arc, Circle, Selection and PushPull tools only. 

Building a Dome - Part 1

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Building a dome in SketchUp

There are a wealth of different dome structures built during history. In this SketchUp tutorial, we shall examine the different steps towards developing a dome with (eventually) pndentives, a drum and a cuplola (in Part #2) as we can see them starting from Ancient and Medieval times up to the Classic revival (or Classicism) of the late 17th to the 19th centuries.

During the process, we'll use quite basic tools to build simple, basic shapes these magnificent structures are built up from.

Creating a Cross Vault

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In this SketchUp tutorial, we shall demonstrate the work-flow on how to model a cross-vault (in this case with semicircular vaults) or "groin vault" in an efficient way, avoiding problems that can occur as well as providing tips for more logical and efficient organization of the model.

Here the Solid tools cannot be used for boolean operation so all these things will be accomplished by the "traditional" Intersect tools, namely the "Intersect selected" operation only (as we are modelling with vault thickness).

Arched Windows in a Curved Wall

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In our latest tutorial, we showed how to use boolean operations when having to cut holes into curved surfaces. Back there, it was a simple, rectangular window - and also small enough not to cause problems with its parallel sides in a cylindrical wall.

In this tutorial, we shall demonstrate, how to add larger windows that "respect" the radial nature of a cylindrical wall in SketchUp - i.e. their sides and even the top will have a certain, widening shape. To make it more interesting, we'll add three windows at a time and they are arched.

Window in a Round Wall

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In SketchUp, components can only automatically cut holes on single faces as demonstrated in this tutorial. Even when it comes for openings to cut holes on both outer and inner faces of a thick wall, we need to use workarounds as described in this tutorial.

Now as components cannot even cut holes in round surfaces, we need to truly intersect our openings into these objects. In this tutorial, we'll show two ways (one for users of the Pro version and one for those of the Free version) how to cut a simple window into a curved (cylindrical) wall.

A Few Shadow Tips & Tricks

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In SketchUp, there are a few little tips and often "hidden gems" (even bugs or "nicer to say" unfavourable features) that we can exploit to our advantages. This is also the case with different shadow settings, SketchUp's incapability to display png transparency in shadows and a few others.

In this SketchUp tutorial, we are trying to demonstrate a few solutions with the Shadow tools and settings that are not as common as others and show a "fix" for an often misunderstood problem.


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