Phil hunt

sketchup v vw for 3d modelling

19 posts in this topic

morning

Have never used SketchUp for 3d modelling but have been watching a few tutorials on youtube and it does seem a fantastic piece of kit.....i guess if you know how to use it!

I am interested to see how many of you guys integrate the modelling element of SU with VectorWorks and if any of the SU 3d modelling tools you would like to see on the 3d modelling pallette in VectorWorks....if any......many thanks

 

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Personally, I see no point whatsoever to use SU for anything. Have it installed, but never use it. It looks cute for a few minutes, until you realize that most things takes longer to do than in other programs. The user interface, in my opinion,  makes simple things complicated. The VW 2018 program folder is 7.6 times bigger than SU 2017, and the reason is simply that there are much more of everything. Simple can be good if you don't have time to learn a way more complicated program, but also means that you hit the roof of what's possible much quicker. SU has admittedly a far healthier third party market, but much of it is of somewhat questionable quality as it's done by amateurs. 

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its seems flashy promo videos for SU do indeed sell the product...but I have seen this happen with other programs I use......

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hi dave thanks for the link i have seen this...really good video (gave me a few ideas to try).....my question was more out of curiosity with skp.....i have never as i mentioned used it to model and most of my work is 3d modelling.....but thanks for your interest  

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We use it all of the time and take the models from SU into VW after clean up work. VW tools are far superior and despite claims to the contrary VW is much quicker than SU.

 

The one area where SU beats VW hands down is with texturing, which VW is absolutely awful at. In fact a large green crayon held in a boxing glove would be superior to VW for texturing. SU relies on a lot of plugins which at times is not great but there are several UV mapping tools which help enormously.

 

The model into VW works very well indeed and scaled textures are respected in VW and rescaling of objects is also respected with the texture also resizing correctly.

 

There are a lot of things to be aware of when working between SU and VW but as long as you follow a set of rules you are good to go.

 

I am happy to answer questions on the process.

 

<Edit> I should also say that SU is free (SU Make) and its all you need and we have been using it seriously for years. So the flashy promos are absolutely fine because the product is free. Maybe it is an urban myth but I believe Google stipulated that Trimble had to provide a free version for life during the sale of Su.

 

Edited by barkest

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I think SketchUp is very easy and intuitive to use.

I play with it every 5 years or so -_-

 

But I think the geometry produced  is often horrible and I hate when clients bring SketchUp Models.

May need some months, then there will be released a program called Shape.

That will be "free" and similar like SketchUp but works with true Solids in DWG format.

So if it is intuitive in the end, you can use the geometry you created instantly and  lossless to apply

IFC things in another App later.

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I agree with @Zoomer, the geometry from Sketchup is often revealed to be really terrible when you bring it into other 3D programs.  It's often not suitable for any kind of 3D printing without a lot of cleanup.

 

I have a pretty strong background in Rhino and if I need to do any 3D modeling more complex than a simple box, I usually do it Rhino.  VW's modelling is like pulling teeth compared to Rhino.  I occasionally 3D print models for work, and I always take the geometry out of VW to clean up in Rhino, because even simple things like joins and subtractions get weird really quickly.  VW's NURBS implementation is not particularly useful, extruding can only be done on a limited selection of object types, drawing 3D polylines or curves is difficult, and surface creation is not intuitive either.  I'm roughly 300% faster in any program that gives me a command line, vs forcing me to use a limited set of shortcut keys or menu/tool palette selections.

 

You can also run Rhino on just about anything (seriously, I've run the most recent version on an ARM powered Windows tablet with 1gb of shared video memory).  And it's more stable than VW (and cheaper).  So if you're looking for a better 3D modeling program than VW, there are definitely options.  There's also things like Blender, Solidworks, and all the Autodesk options, the choice of which really depends on what your application is.

 

I do my architectural drawings in VW because I'm paid to and it's moderately ok at them and cheaper than other BIM options.

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thanks

so why do so many pieces of software allow the SKP files to be imported if the geometry is terrible...(.i have to say I agree but sometimes it gets me out of a hole when I need a 3d model)

or is it that so many people are indeed using the software because it is an affordable option?

 

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15 minutes ago, Phil hunt said:

thanks

so why do so many pieces of software allow the SKP files to be imported if the geometry is terrible...(.i have to say I agree but sometimes it gets me out of a hole when I need a 3d model)

or is it that so many people are indeed using the software because it is an affordable option?

 

 

I think it's both the price and the fact that the program is pretty non-threatening to beginners.  I do get that things like Rhino can be pretty intimidating when it opens by default with a command line, 4 different views of the model, roughly a dozen tabs of tools at the top of the window, a toolbar down the left side of the interface, and a bunch of tabs of various additional functionality on the right.

 

Sketchup opens with roughly 8 buttons and a cartoon person.

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I quite like the girl who opens up in Sketchup although her fashion style needs a bit of up grading :-) other than that I have it never use it.  I agree with Claes and Zoomer. Promises much, delivers little. A cheap pretender. D

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8 hours ago, barkest said:

We use it all of the time and take the models from SU into VW after clean up work. VW tools are far superior and despite claims to the contrary VW is much quicker than SU.

 

The one area where SU beats VW hands down is with texturing, which VW is absolutely awful at. In fact a large green crayon held in a boxing glove would be superior to VW for texturing. SU relies on a lot of plugins which at times is not great but there are several UV mapping tools which help enormously.

 

I agree completely with @barkesthere, texturing in SketchUp is so easy compared to Vw (which is really really bad).

 

Quote

 I should also say that SU is free (SU Make) and its all you need and we have been using it seriously for years. So the flashy promos are absolutely fine because the product is free. Maybe it is an urban myth but I believe Google stipulated that Trimble had to provide a free version for life during the sale of Su.

 

 

One correction to what barkest says here, which was true until the current 2018 release of SketchUp Free (formerly ‘Sketchup Make’). Now ‘SketchUp Free’ only runs inside a browser window and extensions are not supported on the Free browser version. If you need to use any extensions, you have to get the Pro version.

Edited by rDesign

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@rDesignThanks for that I did not know about SU Free.

 

You can still download SU 2017 Make https://www.sketchup.com/download/all

 

Disappointed that it now runs in a browser but at Uni we purchase the pro version and it will be interesting to see how we go with Free in the future

 

@Jim Presently you have to save as Su 2015 for VW2017. It used to be the case that you would go back on version but clearly that is not the case currently. Could you confirm the versions of Su that work with 2018 and if you are going to keep pace with at least the previous version of Su?

 

thank you

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13 hours ago, nrkuhl said:

I agree with @Zoomer, the geometry from Sketchup is often revealed to be really terrible when you bring it into other 3D programs.  It's often not suitable for any kind of 3D printing without a lot of cleanup.

 

I have a pretty strong background in Rhino and if I need to do any 3D modeling more complex than a simple box, I usually do it Rhino.  VW's modelling is like pulling teeth compared to Rhino.  I occasionally 3D print models for work, and I always take the geometry out of VW to clean up in Rhino, because even simple things like joins and subtractions get weird really quickly.  VW's NURBS implementation is not particularly useful, extruding can only be done on a limited selection of object types, drawing 3D polylines or curves is difficult, and surface creation is not intuitive either.  I'm roughly 300% faster in any program that gives me a command line, vs forcing me to use a limited set of shortcut keys or menu/tool palette selections.

 

You can also run Rhino on just about anything (seriously, I've run the most recent version on an ARM powered Windows tablet with 1gb of shared video memory).  And it's more stable than VW (and cheaper).  So if you're looking for a better 3D modeling program than VW, there are definitely options.  There's also things like Blender, Solidworks, and all the Autodesk options, the choice of which really depends on what your application is.

 

I do my architectural drawings in VW because I'm paid to and it's moderately ok at them and cheaper than other BIM options.

 

 

It's true that most of us use a combination of programs, depending on what you do and what you wish to achieve. Hands up everyone who uses Photoshop for example. Personally, I have about five or ten programs I consider my core inner circle programs. 

 

I would definitely not use Rhino for the bulk of architectural modeling, and not for 2D drafting. VW's NURBS implementation could be improved a lot (I almost always use another program there and import the geometry, though not Rhino), but just a few clean-ups in the user interface would take it much closer to Rhino, even though Rhino by no means is my favorite, it's still admittedly better than VW at this. Solidworks and the AutoDesk options  are way more expensive, and besides Revit, mostly focusing more on mechanical modeling, so they are perhaps in another league. As for Revit and ArchiCAD, I somehow doubt that they are nowhere near as flexible as VW is for things other than Architectural work. 

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@Claes LundstromI agree that Rhino does not easily put out decent 2D graphics, and if I can do things in VW with Plugin objects, great.  Where VW breaks down is once you move past that though -  Complex residential roof shapes get painful pretty fast.

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No program does everything, so therefore I almost always use combinations of tools. In this quick sketch, the NURBS surfaces where generated in TouchCAD, the solid modeling was done in VW, and the rendering in Keyshot. With a little practice, I guess it was under a days work, and all programs did something they where good at. 

 

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Interesting....so what was the final program you used to transfer you model file to key shot.....and was it a steep learning kerb for keyshot. Thanks

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17 hours ago, Phil hunt said:

Interesting....so what was the final program you used to transfer you model file to key shot.....and was it a steep learning kerb for keyshot. Thanks

 

The model was direct exported from VW to Keyshot using the Collada format. KeyShot is basically a stand alone rendering program that reads from other programs via plug-ins, but also reads a wide range of file formats. I mostly tested it for product visualization, where it's more easy going than with architectural models.

 

Rendering quality is by far the best of quite a few programs I used over the years. Very good textures. All materials tested (metallic paint, chrome, rubber, leather, glass ) looks very realistic. The background image used was a stock one, it's 360, and it instantly generates shadows and reflections in the model despite the model not really standing on something, and updates instantly and follows the model when you rotate the model. Photo realistic realtime updates. I'm testing on a demo, so what you see is a screen dump, and it takes say 5-10 seconds to get there after a change of say color of view. Seems to communicate well with VW in all sorts of file formats, including IGES, XT, STEP, DWG, DXF, 3DS, OBJ, VRML, Collada, etc. 3DS and Collada allows you to bring over Renderworks stuff like textures and lights, but where Collada works better as it exports as NURBS models, whereas 3DS exports as trimeshes. So far good then. Bad things, and the this is a colossal flaw, is that it can't smooth off a polygon or trimesh based model (what the ... where they thinking there not being able to do what virtually all other programs can do), and it's also quite expensive. 

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