[Lab] Google Sketchup

Paul & Andrea Mumby themumbys at gmail.com
Fri Feb 28 16:22:32 EST 2014

Sketchup is very capable for 3D Printing. Though not out of the box. You
need a plugin.

I pretty much use Sketchup, or OpenSCAD as my 2 primary design tools for
all my printing.

Most 3D Printers require a file in either a specific format for the
machine, or some variance of GCODE (typically still fairly specific to the
tunings of the machine). Which is where a "Slicer" app comes in. There are
dozens of these for free. Cura is a good one (but primarily for ultimaker).
These almost all take an STL format 3D Model, and slice it up into the
layers needed for 3D Printing, and output a GCODE (or other format) file.

To output an STL in Sketchup is easy, you just need is this plugin

Check the comments if you have trouble installing it. It's a bit different
in the new version of sketchup, in V8 it was a bit simpler. But still
fairly easy to do once you get the right paths and such.

Once the plugin is installed you just select the model parts you want to
export, (I prefer to group them, and check they are a complete object, by
checking for volume by right clicking on it once it's grouped, and choosing
"Entity Info". If it shows a "volume" in there, then it's "water tight" (no
holes, and therefore a solid object). That is one thing to check to ensure
it's printable.

Then export to STL.

Hope that helps!

On Fri, Feb 28, 2014 at 4:11 PM, Aurelius R <maxrowsell at gmail.com> wrote:

> I have just stumbled onto the amazing thing that is Sketchup. In school,
> we learned the beginnings of Blender and also another one whose name I
> can't remember, and I always wanted to get back into it.
> I think because I have experience working with 3D models, I only had to
> watch the very basic tutorial videos and I was off and running, though I
> suspect the average person wouldn't need much more than that either.
> I've designed the shelf I've always wanted, which is freestanding and sits
> on my desk to give me shelf space above my monitors. Hard to explain
> without seeing it. I also prototyped a project case with a speaker hole in
> the bottom and standoffs etc.
> My question for all you 3D printer experts out there is, what format do
> most 3D printers take? I've noticed that this program can export the 3D
> models in quite a few different formats.
> My other question was, if I wanted to print a small case for one of my
> boards, am I allowed to do it at the lab?
> Thanks!
> ____________________
> Peace, Love, Empathy
> Alexander Max Rowsell
> _______________________________________________
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> 1. subscribe http://artengine.ca/mailman/listinfo/lab
> 2. then email Lab at artengine.ca to send your message to the list
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