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#69523 by greenbergman
Sun Jul 24, 2016 10:44 am
I'm taking a plunge into 3D drawing, with an eye toward exporting to Sketchup for view rotation as well as modifying the elements. So far, I've been doing it a crude way with, of course, crude results. I've drawn a base plan in 2D, then exported to skp. After importing it into sketchup, I've been tracing the plan so that I can create sketchup 3D shapes and then can alter the faces/solids though push/pull, move, etc. to manipulate them into the forms I need.

This has been tedious and ends with me creating a mess as I create further shapes in Sketchup. Obviously, I'm not approaching this right.

(The drawing, btw, is exterior massing of an existing building (no fenestration, etc.) and then the simple masses of surrounding buildings -- existing and potential -- for a zoning analysis to show how that building may be impacted. The base plan I've created in DataCad is the flattened 2D outline of the building's massing with stepped roofs and roof bulkheads, etc., and the adjacent property lines and existing buildings.)

So...how should I be going about this? I'm not fluent in DataCad's 3D shapes, but when I've created some and then gotten them into Sketchup, they aren't alterable.

Can you all point me to the right (or a right) method? Are there CheapTricks articles and DataCad videos I should start with? (How can I search for and retrieve CheapTricks articles? I have many, but not all, issues saved digitally.) To start, I think I need a better understanding of DataCads's 3D shapes -- I've skimmed through the DataCad manual (V17) but, as good as it is, it didn't get me to a point where I understand which shapes to use when.

And then, how can I alter them in sketchup?

Many questions, obviously. I need some pointers to get me started.



David Bergman RA LEED AP CPHD

architect - David Bergman Architect
designer - Fire & Water Lighting
author - Sustainable Design: A Critical Guide
blog - EcoOptimism
adjunct faculty - Parsons School of Design

david@cyberg.com http://www.cyberg.com
212 475 3106 twitter: @EcoOptimism
#69524 by Robert Scott
Sun Jul 24, 2016 1:37 pm
The very first thing you want to do is obtain the book "Sketchup for Dummies". This will give you a solid grasp on components and groups which will "protect" your geometry.
There is also a video tutorial that goes along:

http://www.dummies.com/how-to/computers ... tchUp.html

One thought to immediately erase from your mind....Sketchup does not behave like CAD.

#69525 by greenbergman
Sun Jul 24, 2016 4:23 pm
Thanks Bob. Yes, I have the Dummies book, which I'm wading through. I don't think, though, it will address what types of DataCad 3D entities play nicely with SketchUp.

Thank you as well for the Dummies video links. I've been going through those as well. And I'm trying to understand SU layers, which as you mention, are apparently quite different from DataCad's concept of layers.

#69528 by Robert Scott
Mon Jul 25, 2016 11:18 am

Although I started modeling in DC now do 95% of my modeling in Sketchup. James Goodman will hopefully chime in here as we have been sharing models back and forth from DC to SU without issues over the last 1 to 2 years. Imported DC entities should (and this is a good thing) import into SU as a group or component. A double click or right click/edit group will allow you to edit the SU entities.

A few important SU tips:

Always draw new geometry on Layer 1.
Use layers for visibility control
Learn to use groups and components...these are you friends and will prevent geometry from sticking together.
Think of your SU model as a block of clay and carve away or add to it.

#69635 by Ted B
Sat Aug 13, 2016 3:32 am
I use Sketchup Layout for final construction drawings in some of my projects, it's great for documenting and annotating elevations generated in Sketchup while keeping the model "live" for revisions. The nuisance I find is there no simple "live"-method of using Layout as 'paper-space' for details or floor plans drawn in Datacad. I find as .dwg or .dxf imports that the text, dimensions and much of the non-geometrical elements just vanish. It's OK if it's strictly line-work like a blank base-floor plan. But completed annotated floor-plans, sections and details give unpredictable, but unusable results.

My current work-arounds are;
a. Plot the detail or completed floor-plan to .PDF then convert it to a .PNG or .JPG. Then insert that image into Layout and re-scale it as-needed. This also works for images or web-page Mfrs. cutsheets or details screen-captured and edited to suit. As purely-images they can be challenging to the final .PDF document's file-size. For standard detail that never change this works. The downside is any revisions made to Datacad- generated material can be cumbersome via this-method, as you have to revise- PDF replot - JPG reconvert - JPG reinsert - resize all over again.

b. I plot the completed Datacad drawings with titleblocks the conventional-way as .PDFs to a plot-folder on a sheet-by-sheet basis; a01, a02, a-8, etc... Then I plot from layout the paper-space page or pages similarly as .PDFs into the same folder as a03, a05-a07, etc... Once every page has been plotted or printed to .PDF, using PDFTools I merge then together as one .PDF file with the pages in proper consecutive order. You just have to be sure to coordinate the construction document page-numbers and what sheets or pages you include in each .PDF file. I have clients that want the collated .PDF file for their 'paperless' offices. The worse that happens if all goes well is some of the pages come out of the printer reverse-oriented 180-degrees-around and you have to manually flip them around before stapling and issuing. For on-screen use as .PDFs, you just have to 'rotate' the view 90 or 180-deg.

If you'd just making in-house check-plots you can just batch print them out uncollated -- then collate by-hand one or two sets.

. . .My ultimate wish-list would be to insert Datacad Xrefs as groups or components "live" from my Datacad construction documents into Sketchup Layout's paper-space, while maintaining the same inter-operability as between Layout and the 3d-model in Sketchup.

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