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Thread: Frustrated with sketchup

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Mountainburg, AR

    Frustrated with sketchup

    I know it is me. But that does not lessen my extreme frustration with the evil torture chamber called sketchup!!!! All I really want to do is design a corner cabinet for my office. It took me SEVERAL Hours to draw my cabinet in sketchup, and then I wanted to change it's size and I screwed it all up beyond recognition. Drawing this out on paper HAS to be easier and faster!!!
    I think my problem with sketchup is that I want to be in the shop cutting wood and not at the computer drawing lines. I just want to BUILD the thing, not draw it. So I just start drawing boxes and the like in sketchup not knowing what I am doing. I end up with something that kinda looks like what I want, and then when I try to get the measurments right and stuff like that I screw it all up. Hence my extreme frustration.
    I think until i can get it into me head that I need to actually follow some of the tutorials and take the time to really learn how to use this program, I will just go back to a sharp pencil, a ruler, and some graph paper. At least I know how to use those tools.
    Has this happened to you too ?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    somewhere east of Queen Creek, AZ - South East of Phoenix
    It can be frustrating but it can also be a great tool. I use it as an design aid when I am tossing around and isdea but unlike some I don't use it to get every detail. for instance LOML wanted a desk. She specifically wanted a two drawer file caninate, a work space, four drawers, another work space and another two drawer file cabinate. By suing SU I was able to actually lay it out and determine that the top would neeed to be 9 feet long. Sure I could have done it on a piece of paper but it was very quick in SU.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here what I came up with and it did realy save me when I was buying materials. I am only a novice with SU.
    "There’s a lot of work being done today that doesn’t have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesn’t have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    SE Minnesota
    Larry, I tried calling. No answer.

    Gotta get you on the road to using SU, you know.
    Irony: The opposite of Wrinkly

  4. #4
    To answer your question, yes I too became quickly frustrated with Sketchup. Its a cool program, but when I went to draw up an addition onto our house, it was all messed up. Like you said, I am sure its great, but maybe pencil and paper might be better for drawing out my plans afterall.

  5. #5
    Yes I struggled with it also and was pretty much resigned to using it as a pad and pencil if that. I had tried a bunch of other inexpensive CAD programs in the pastand never got very far.
    Then I stumbled across Dave Richards armoire tutorial, this demonstrated pretty much everything I wanted to be able to do with it.
    I just hunkered down and spent maybe 10 hours going over and back over that tutorial as well as few others of his.
    Since then I did a fairly simple small jewelry box with 5 drawers with all the joinery detailed.
    I asked Dave if he would look at it and critique my SU usage. After graciously spending 1 1/2 hrs on the phone with me I came away with more tricks and techniques.
    For me this has been well worth the time invested thus far and think I'm at the point of generating some decent drawings with joinery detail and dimensions.

    Well that’s my story

    Dave if you read this move-copy-divide command rocks

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    The Ocean State
    Ya know...I'm thinking those of us who have been called by Dave trying to help should send a Christmas present.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Portland, OR

    I too found Sketchup pretty frustrating to start with.

    But I found the canned tutorials that come with it to be a good way to get past that first level of pain. I found that they were a good choice even before I jumped in to the various threads that Dave Richards has so kindly provided for us all

    I'm not very far down the road but I do plan to keep working at it as I'm sure that it will far surpass my pen and paper abilities sooner rather than later.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    The Heart of Dixie
    It's really frustrating when you a Draftsman from way back. I can visualize so for the most part rough hand sketches are all I need. But sketchup does have advantages for getting the scale right on the details.

    I am finally getting to where I can do some with it. What your trying to do IMHO is run before you learned to walk. I did the same thing. I learned a lot of about sketch up by doing a shop layout. I found a site where I could down load machines someone had drawn. Then just lay out my shop and place the machines. Not as easy as it sounds but a great learning exercise. I suggest you back up and try something easier, then try running. Worked for me.

    Of course I still sketch stuff out. Old habits die hard.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    SE Minnesota
    Quote Originally Posted by Glenn Clabo View Post
    Ya know...I'm thinking those of us who have been called by Dave trying to help should send a Christmas present.
    Aw shucks. I don't know what to say. Thank you.

    I wish there was an easier way to demonstrate how to do some of those basic things that some find difficult. Once you've got those basic tools under control, there'll be no holding you back.

    Larry has given me some ideas of things to investigate which would allow folks to log in to a sort of class where I could draw in SU and those logged in would see it in near real time. Maybe after the New Year I can figure out how to set it up and do that. I expect one thing that will be a big factor is figuring out how to finance it but who knows. Maybe I can figure out how to hook the WalletVac™ up to my computer.

    In the meantime, keep asking questions. I'll keep trying to answer them.
    Irony: The opposite of Wrinkly

  10. #10
    I agree with what others have said. I think I am trying to run before I walk. Maybe I will tackle something easier first...something small. I will say this though, it is darn cool what you can do with that program.

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