3 December 2014

SKETCHUP PLUGINS




As usual it was a long time since my last post. Just want to share SketchUp plugins I use. I will organise them by Developer name so it will be easy for you to find them. I also will provide links to the plugin page for more information.
The first thing to do is to get a SketchUcation Plugin Store plugin it has a best collection of SketchUp plugins. It also helps to organise, update and sync plugins via cloud. Another source is SketchUp Extension Warehouse.

Repeat Copy [Chris Fullmer]            
This plugin helps to populate scene with objects like trees, grass, people etc. You can select multiple components and place them in the scene with random rotation and scale. Unfortunately not free         
   
Scale And Rotate Multiple [Chris Fullmer]                        
Gives you an ability to randomly rotate and scale objects in your scene. Say you have a lot of trees or beach stones, you can select them all and apply random scale and rotation. Really helps in modelling landscapes.

Exploded Arc Centerpoint Finder [Chris Fullmer]                
It is always a problem in SketchUp to find a centre point of exploded arch or circle, well this plugin helps you to find an arc centre point and place a mark in the centre for future reference. Unfortunately it doesn’t work with curves that are not exploded. There is another tool that makes it - Guide Tools from ThomThom.




Joint Push Pull Interactive [Fredo6]                   
This plugin works as a typical push/pull but with curved surfaces or multiply planes/meshes at the same time. Helps to make windows, multiple openings or extrude non-coplanar surfaces.

Bezier Spline [Fredo6]                                         
Now you can draw complex curves, unfortunately there is no much precision control. To make precise models sometimes helps to draw a cage for future Bezier curve by hand using arcs and circles and then convert them into Bezier.

Round Corners [Fredo6]                                      
Well it is round corners, helps a lot in creating furniture and roads curbs.

TopoShaper [Fredo6]
It is a great tool for creating very clean topography models based on contours.

Very helpful plugins, they give you more control on selecting things in you scene or go back to your previous selections. There is also an ability to select only edges or faces.

Material Tools [ThomThom]
It is a must have for visualisation in SketchUp, especially  when you are getting a messy models form someone else. And to be honest you always get a terrible models with thousands of unnamed materials randomly applied to the model. With this plugin you can quickly clean/purge/remove all materials from part of the model or from the whole model just in one click. 



Shell [ThomThom]
Who have used 3ds Max before will love it. It is not as powerful as 3ds Max Shell modifier but you can make a simple shell offsets in your model. Windows glass for example.

Guide Tools [ThomThom]
Places a reference centre point to you circles and arches.

This one is very cool, helps to create very complicated forms. Basically works like loft or rail in Rhino. One thing keep in mind is that you have to have identical number of edges between rails and profiles to make a good model. Another thing is that your rails and profiles should be welded. To break you curves into specific number of segment just use a SketchUp divide tool and then weld them with Weld plugin form Smustard.


Self explanatory, but you can select elements you want to purge. Whith default SketchUp purge it is quite annoying when you loose all your styles.

2D Tools [TIG]
Gives a lot of Autocad like 2D drawing tools like trim, fillet etc. I am using it for making road radiuses, it gives more precise results.

s4u-to Components [Suforyou]
It is very cool plugin it does a lot of great stuff. It looks like panelling tools for Rhino. Basically you can apply a components to a surface to create different 3D patterns, facades, screens and so on.


Weld [Smustard]
Welds selected edges in one spline.

Path Copy [Smustard]
Copies a component along path.

Profile Builder [Whaat]
It is very easy to create structural elements of the building with this plugin. Walls, metal beams with different profiles, rails and so on. This plugin is very powerfull and what nice about it is that all element you have created have some sort of history and you can go back and update profiles at any time.

SketchUP STL [SketchUp Team]
Gives an ability to export your model for 3d Printing, but it is very limited you have to keep track your models watertightness and wall thickness by yourself.



Solar North [SketchUp Team]
Self explanatory, but helpful in changing shadows directions while rendering.

Shapes [SketchUp Team]
Gives a set of standard prebuilt 3D shapes. Not use them to often, but sphere is helpful.

It is a non free plugin, but it creates very beautiful 2D/3D sections and plans with lots creative options. I would highly recommend it.

Render plugin, although it is not the fastest render, especially on one machine, it gives you a very beautiful images. 



Simple way to make simple visuals for a small cost. Not really use it, there is no control over materials properties like gloss, bump etc.

I think all these plugins are very helpful and speed up my modelling process. Hopefully you will find these plugins helpful in you work as well. You also can find a lot of information about individual plug at SketchUcation website.