Course Content
SketchUp PRO
About Lesson

If you’re happy with your 3D model, you’ll probably want to present it appropriately. This implies the creation of various graphic attachments that contain specific elements such as dimension lines, labels and notes. Since none of this can be done in SketchUp, it is necessary to master the use of a special program called LayOut. In this lesson, I’ll show you what it’s really all about.

At first glance, it seems as if the entire job can be completed within the basic program, because SketchUp also has functions for dimensioning and entering various notes. This means that at any time you can start the Label function and with two clicks create a new label or use the dimensioning function and add several dimension lines. For the sake of example, I will measure the width of the windows and their mutual distance, but it should be borne in mind that such elements are difficult to fit into different scenes. In order to prove it to you, I will show the entire model from the top, and this will automatically be reflected in the appearance of this label. As you can see, it is now facing upwards and the dimension lines are no longer visible at all. It is for these reasons that I would not recommend that you insert various descriptions, notes and dimension lines directly into the 3D model. The only exception are elements that have a temporary character and serve to remind you of an operation that you have yet to do, but it is best to use them as little as possible.

Before I show you how this all looks in LayOut, I’d like to point out that this program relies heavily on scenes that exist within the base project. This means that they represent the basis for creating new attachments that can have different dimensions and contain elements that are not directly related to the basic geometry. In this example, the largest part of the document is occupied by the view of the interior, while below it there are various textual contents that only accompany the basic image.

If you want some other content to be displayed on this sheet, it is enough to select the appropriate element and go to the section called SketchUp model. After that, it will not be difficult for you to select another scene from the list and thus change the basic content. I have created several different attachments in this way, and each of them has a different scene, which of course includes the display of the entire base. It is characteristic of it that it can be shown in a precisely determined scale, and in the same way it is possible to show different sections and views. In this case, there are not many dimension lines and special notes on them, but they can be added very easily.

On the attachments that follow, you can see how completely different scenes are combined, and if you decide to supplement some of them with appropriate captions, they will be tied to exactly specific elements. This means that the program will automatically remove them if you change the display and display them again as soon as you put everything back in place.

A special convenience is represented by the so-called overlapping contents (Overlays), because by applying them it is very easy to add elements that supplement the basic display. I chose an example in which the electrical installations were drawn over the architectural plan, while the model itself remained completely intact. For better clarity, I’ll remove the drawing in the background so you’ll be able to see what this scheme looks like and how easy it can be manipulated.

In the same way, it is possible to create real technical documentation, which, in addition to schematic representations, also contains very detailed drawings. In this case, I used the basic 3D model to create the section and then added hatches, descriptions and dimension lines to it.

As you could see for yourself, LayOut allows you to use your 3D model as a basis for creating various graphic attachments, and their complexity depends only on your wishes and needs. In the next lesson, I’ll show you how you can prepare your model so that it fits as well as possible in LayOut.

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