Often, in the documentation of shop drawings or the creation of architectural views, it is necessary to create cross sections, especially when working with 3D models. Google SketchUp provides a very useful tool bar and tool set just for this purpose. It is a tool bar called Sections and you can make it viewable by going to View/Toolbars/Sections and checking it.

However, SketchUp has a minor flaw due to the fact that it is not a solids modeler like AutoCAD. When you perform a cross-section in SketchUp it is like cutting a shoe box in half; you can see inside the box from two openings. However, when cross-sectioning a building or a piece of furniture you are cutting through solids and what you expect to see are more faces like cutting a solid block in two. To fix this problem I suggest you download a Ruby script called SectionCutFace.rb. After following this link save the file as a text file with the name SectionCutFace.rb. Note the .rb file extension. This file must be a text file and it must have the .rb file extension.

This tutorial takes you through an explanation of the use of the Sections tool bar and context menu, as well as the use of the SectionCutFace Ruby script. I use a Side Table model as the vehicle to demonstrate their use. You can download this model from my Free Plans page and experiment with these tools on your own. Have fun!

Leave a Reply

8 Responses to “SketchUp’s Sections Tools For Cross-Sectioning”


  1. Don Thomson says:

    Hi Joe,

    Is there anyway we can download this video for offline viewing? I didn’t notice a download option.

    Thanks!

    Don


  2. Joe says:

    Don,

    Try this link:

    http://chiefwoodworker.blip.tv/file/2215769/

    Scroll to the bottom and you will see a download button. Unfortunately this file is not mp4 but flv. But I suspect you can play it on your system. Let me know if you have problems.

    Joe….


  3. Don Thomson says:

    Thanks Joe! I will give it a try and let you know.

    I don’t know how I’m going to survive the summer not having any new tutorials from you 🙂 I know, you have a life also, right?

    Anyway, you have made it possible for me to become productive, very quickly, in delivering usable renderings to my customers for review and approval. So far the response has been great from them.

    Have a great summer (if it ever gets here)!!


  4. Joe Zeh says:

    Don,

    I may have withdrawal symptoms myself. I enjoyed creating the tutorials and the camaraderie of the woodworkers that used them. But I will be back with a new series in the fall.

    In the meantime I am also trying to finish a SketchUp book I started last year. It will cover much the same material that the videos cover. In fact, I intend to package the book, videos and supporting SketchUp models on a DVD.

    Let me know if you have problems downloading the Sections tool video.

    Joe…


  5. Don Thomson says:

    Thanks Joe!

    Let me know when the book is done. I will be the first in line to purchase a copy.


  6. Joe says:

    Don,

    Get your wallet out. I’m working on it ;<) Joe.....


  7. Dan Carmichael says:

    Don,

    Try this link:

    http://chiefwoodworker.blip.tv/file/2215769/

    Scroll to the bottom and you will see a download button. Unfortunately this file is not mp4 but flv. But I suspect you can play it on your system. Let me know if you have problems.

    Joe….

    I tried the link and do not see a download button at the bottom, what am I missing here? I can not seem to download this video and save it to my tutorial videos you have created.

    By the way the tutorials are excellent and have made it much easier to grasp the concepts and become more efficient at using Sketchup. Thank you very much for taking the time to share your vast knowledge, your an excellent teacher.


  8. Joe says:

    Hi Dan,

    Unfortunately BlipTV has changed their website and policies and you can no longer download this video from them. If you are willing to work with me a bit I will set up a Dropbox where you can download it. It will require you and I to pass back a forth a couple of emails. But if you help me to debug the process it will then be a method I can use for others who have similar problems downloading my videos.

    If you are willing please reply to this note in the affirmative and I will start the process.

    By the way, thank you for the kind words and your interest in my tutorials. Thanks,

    Joe….