This page is intended to collect feedback on my book – SketchUp: A Design Guide for Woodworkers. Feedback can be any of the following:

    • Errors in text e.g. incorrect hyperlink, spelling, incorrect internal reference, etc. Anything that needs to be corrected.
    • Errors in illustrations e.g. image doesn’t relate to the subject being discussed, error in a procedure that doesn’t work etc.
    • Incorrect statement e.g. something I said is simply not correct.
    • You can also leave constructive feedback on any part of the book or suggestions for improvement. I welcome all your comments and suggestions, positive or critical.

I will review all reported errors and feedback. Any reported errors I agree with will be added to the Errata list on my Support Page.

When leaving a comment please do not include any contact information in the body of the comment, since that information will appear publicly. If you need to send me contact information please use my email address

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109 Responses to “SketchUp: A Design Guide for Woodworkers Feedback”

  1. Jim says:

    I have some suggestions regarding Figure 7, page 156.
    1) You have 2 10.25 dimensions for the top of the leg to the bevel.
    2)There are no dimensions for the length and width of the side apron.
    3) The table height dimension is already provided in the Front View. If you provide the dimension in both views, a phantom dimension line appears in the Front View.
    4) The dimensions from the bottom of the leg to the bottom of the apron and to the end of the bevel are superfluous and not needed. If you have a 1/64″ tolerance in each you could have errors totaling 1/32″ (considering the total top to floor). I agree that they are nice to have, but don’t really add much information.

    I’m a retired Mechanical Engineer, so bear with me should I appear overly critical.

  2. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    You are not overly critical and I very much appreciate the thoroughness of your reading. I also appreciate that you take the time to provide feedback.

    I agree with your comments. Unfortunately I can’t change anything until and if a second addition comes out (which depends on how well the book sells). But I will add your comments to the errata. However, your point about the tolerances adding up is not correct. While the displayed dimension is accurate to 1/64″ the internal accuracy of each point in the drawing is the accuracy of the computer’s 64-bit math; the error would be close to infinitesimal, at least for our purposes.


  3. Jim says:

    With regard to tolerances, I was referring to accumulative fabrication tolerances. I was taught to not over-dimension drawings. I agree that for the normal woodworker this wouldn’t be a problem because they would fabricate each part individually.
    Also, with regard to the phantom dimension, you had the same problem that I did in the scene showing the drawer side. Notice the 1/2 dimension showing. It is from the edge view.


  4. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    I was taught, like you, not to over dimension. But that was 50 years ago when I was in engineering school ;<) Joe....

  5. Jesse Garcia says:

    I should have kept working on trying to figure out the problem I was having more, before I e-mailed you.

    I tracked it down to forgetting to explode the front and back way back in pages 111 and 112 before Intersecting the faces.

    I redrew the front and back and now everything is back on track.

    Thank You

  6. Joe says:

    Hi Jesse,

    Did you email me with a problem? I can’t find your email in my Inbox. If you emailed me I sincerely apologize for not responding. But I am glad you discovered your problem.


  7. Jim says:

    I’m having problems with the dovetails in Chapter 11. On page 190, you state that the dovetails are 8 degrees relative to the Red Axes. Shouldn’t the angle be relative to the splayed edge? It seems like when you cut them you would want it relative to a physical edge.

  8. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    The dovetail lines are on the surface of the splayed side. However, you can draw a line on that surface that is parallel to the Red axis. That is what the Protractor tool is doing for you when your Protractor cursor is black, you click on a point and move it along the Red axis and click a second time. Now you move the second line up or down eight degrees and the dovetail line will be at eight degrees form an unseen line parallel to the Red axis. If you are still having problems contact me via email and I will create some drawings for you. By the way, you can view the video of the Dough Box on my Popular Woodworking Blog.


  9. Jim says:

    I guess I didn’t communicate very well. Let’s say we are going to draw the top edge of a pin. There are 2 ways to do it. As I read your book, you would place the protractor at a point on the edge, rotate the protractor until you are on the red axis and then rotate 8 Deg counter-clockwise.

    Another way is to place the protractor on the edge at the point, click near the the top edge and then rotate the protractor counter-clockwise 98 Deg. This method produces a guideline at 8 Deg counter-clockwise from the normal to the edge. The 2 methods differ by ~14.5 Deg. It seems to me that the 2nd method is what one would use to layout the dovetail.
    I’m not into cutting dovetails by hand, so I may be wrong.

  10. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    Yes, you can do it that way too. The first time I drew the Dough Box I did it that way and didn’t like the looks.I remember seeing Pope John Paul II hand dovetail casket and the interesting way they did that so I experimented and came up with this method. There is no right way (though there are wrong ways) to hand cut dovetails. By the way, I hand cut dovetails on all of my furniture pieces. It is an artful, fun and rewarding task.


  11. Jim says:

    With regard to Figures 11 and 12 on pages 200 and 201. Although not stated, I believe the construction line between points A and B in Fig. 11 are the same as the line A-C in Fig. 12. At first I was rather baffled when I studied Fig 12 as there appears to be some lines to the right and parallel to A-C. After looking closely at Fig 13, I concluded that the mysterious lines in Fig 12 are construction lines representing the radii of the bottom section of a leg. Please confirm. If so, I would suggest text referring to Fig 12 that explains this. I only picked this up after purchasing a PDF version of your book. In the hard copy it is not clear.

  12. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    Yes, your interpretation is correct. You can actually see this in Figures 13 through 17. I will add this to the Errata section of the support page for the book. Thank you again for your careful eye and willingness to report problems.

    You are over half way through the book now. I hope you are finding it useful.


  13. Karl Wagner says:

    Hi Joe! Great Book. Figure 25, Chapter 7, Page 134, there are two “F”s and no “G”. Figuring it out is pretty simple.

  14. Joe says:

    Hi Karl,

    Thanks for the feedback and compliment. I appreciate that you took the time to report the error. I have a book support page where you will find other errata. If you haven’t been to you might want to check it out.


  15. Jim says:

    I’m back looking at Figure 12 on page 201. I’m confused about the 10 21/64″ dimension. I believe it’s location is somewhat arbitrary depending on where you placed the construction line to establish point D. It seems that point D could be located anywhere along the top edge of Plane 1. Why couldn’t any corner of Plane 1 be used?

  16. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    You are exactly right. The only purpose of Point D is to choose a point that guarantees that you are drawing the construction line on Plane 1 and not somewhere else in free space. So any point on Plane 1 will do.


  17. Jim says:

    On Page 201,you state that the construction line between points A & C lies on Plane 1. Maybe I’m reading too much into this because it also lies on Plane 2. Am I missing something here? I agree that BOTH planes bisect the leg and I have no problem with laying out the leg out-line on just the one plane. After the construction line is created, I see no need for Plane 2.

  18. Jim says:


    Moving right along, I measures 9 13/16″ between the 2 front legs at the bottom V’s. On page 209 you mention ~10 61/64″. Are we talking about the same dimension? Also, I now see a need for Plane 2 when I construct the side rungs.

    Sorry for bothering you so much, but the small details always seem important to me even though when fabrication begins they’re rather insignificant. I’m still learning quite a bit. It seems like each page ha something that impresses me.

    Keep up the fantastic work.


  19. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    You will shortly. Be patient. I write slow ;<) Joe...

  20. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    In figure 26 you will see that 10 61/64″ is from the end of the rung to the other end. If you measure from the bottom of the V to the bottom of the other V you are not including the tenon that goes half the distance into the leg. I believe that is the difference. Let me know if I am wrong.

    You are no bother. I am happy to see how you progress through the book and what issues you uncover. And thanks for the compliment, but I will take constructive criticism too if you have some.


  21. Jim says:

    I took a closer look at Fig.26. You were referring to the upper side rungs and I was referring to the lower front rungs. When I measure between the center lines of the front lower legs at the intersection with the horizontal construction line, I get 11 13/64″, the same as what you show. I need to pay closer attention to the content of the figures.

  22. Joe says:

    I should have realized we were talking about two different rungs too.


  23. Jim says:

    You’ve been so helpful, maybe you can solve my problem. The legs of the stool are completed. I created the longer rung with no problem. I then deviated from your approach. I have Pro 2016, so I thought I could yous the Solid Tools/Trim option. The 1st problem was that the legs were not solid components. For whatever reason the top of the legs were open. I solved that by editing a leg and drawing on one of the circular segments of the top end. So far so good. The legs were “solid components”. I made the rung into a component. It was solid. I selected one leg and made it unique. I then used the rung as a “cutter” and created the mortise in the leg with the Tools/Solid Tools/Trim option. The leg became a Group, as expected. The mortise of the leg was created, BUT the 11 1/8″ length at the top of the leg was missing except for one segment of the circular path around the leg. Any suggestions regarding why this happened?

  24. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    I am a bit surprised that you were able to edit the leg and make it a solid. The Intersect Faces tool in SketchUp has great difficulty handling very small triangles, which are almost always present in irregular shaped parts like this; and usually in quite a few places. That is why I scale things up a factor of 10 when using Intersect Faces. But that does not assure that there still will not be small triangles. The problem with small triangles is that it is difficult to determine if the three points are on the same plane and hence SketchUp doesn’t create a Face. This leaves an open triangle; a hole in the model. This problem has always been a part of SketchUp due to the internal accuracy of the application. For some reason the developers have never seemed motivated to fix it. Perhaps because doing so would slow large models to a crawl or perhaps it is not important to their biggest markets (architecture).

    I suspect some of those problems carried over to the Solids tools when they added them too. However, without seeing your model as it exists prior to using the Solids tools I can’t give you a specific answer. If you can email it to me and I will take a look.


  25. Jim says:

    I don’t know if it’s worth mentioning this, but….
    As drawn per your dimensions and comparing with Figure 1 on page 196, I find 2 differences. 1st the spacing between the legs where they penetrate the seat is 6 3/4″ per Figure 1. The Sketchup model shows 5 15/16″. The culprit may be differences in the leg length. Figure 1 shows 27″. Per Figure 10, the corresponding length is shown as 21 9/32″. For the purpose of the splayed leg exercise it’s not important. However, it may mean a difference to someone laying out the penetration in the seat and they used the 6 3/4″ spacing.
    Chapter 12 served it’s purposes for me and now I’m off to modeling a clock hood.

  26. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    Good observation and you are probably correct about the why. However, it was never my goal to make an accurate (to the fraction of an inch) reproduction of the Shaker Stool in the Kassay book. Merely to show the reader how to do it if they wished to. It was simply a teaching tool for me. When I write the 2nd Edition I will add to the Student Exercises the goal of redoing it as an accurate reproduction ;< ) You might want to give it a shot now :>(


  27. Jim says:

    Thanks for the prompt reply. I’m not too sure lengthening the legs will solve the discrepancies. The 6 3/4″ dimension is tied to the splay angle and the spacing of the legs. I’ll play with it and see what I can do with it.

    In an earlier exchange of e-mails, you mentioned the Sketchup to Layout book by Matt Donley. There is also a book by Bonnie Roskes. I liked the book by Roskes better, but hard copies are pricey. The price for the e-book is ~$40. She usually updates all of her Sketchup related books yearly, but new material is skimpy. Both the Donley and Roskes books are helpful, but they’re oriented toward architecture not furniture or woodworking. The Roskes book is more basic and helps with setup and templates. I would welcome any book by you which involves Layout and Sketchup.

  28. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    Actually it has three dependencies. The spacing of the leg centers at the floor, the length of the leg (or more useful the height of the seat) and the splay angle. I believe the parameter I violated was the seat height. Have fun. It’s a good mental and math exercise.

    I am actually mulling over another book and have begun to form some ideas that I think are useful to the woodworker. They would include both SketchUp and LayOut. If you have some ideas or topics you would like to see covered I am all ears.


  29. Jim says:

    I thought I’d let you know that I created a version of the Shaker Stool where the distance between the center lines of the legs at the bottom of the seat is 6 3/4″ per Fig. 1. The height of the seat top (w/o the cushion) is 18 3/64″. The leg lengths are 18 9/32″. To adjust the leg from your model, I reduced the 11 1/8″ dimension in Fig. 10 to 8 33/64″. I really think the stool is too short. But I was curious about what the stool looked like using the 6 3/4″ restriction.

  30. Joe says:

    Congratulations Jim!. You can probably draw this stool in your sleep now and that is a great way to learn SketchUp (repetition). If I ever get the chance to put a 2nd edition out I may rewrite that section to make it a true reproduction. So thanks for the impetus.


  31. Jim says:

    With regards to Fig. 17, page 228, where are the construction lines located? Did I miss something?

  32. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    The profile (section) in Figure 17 on page 228 has to be the same as the profile in Figure 13. So you can refer to Figure 13 to get the details of the construction lines.


  33. Jim says:

    I asked the wrong or incomplete question. I was looking for the location of the center of rotation. Per Fig. 10, it’s 7 1/4″. I should looked closer!!!

  34. Joe says:

    Ahhh! Glad you figured it out.


  35. Gordon Runkle says:

    Dear Mr. Zeh:
    I tried to locate the Plugins folder as suggested on page 146 of your book, but was unsuccessful, and the following was displayed:

    Error: #
    :in `’
    SketchUp:1:in `eval’

    Why is this?

    Yours is by far the best book on using Sketch Up for woodwork design I have seen, and I have worked through several of them.

  36. Joe says:

    Hi Gordon,

    My sincere apology, but you have found a typo in the book. Notice the difference in the Ruby console results below.Ruby Console

    Notice that in the failed instruction SketchUp is spelled SketchUp as the trade mark requires. However the SketchUp Ruby command requires a module name of Sketchup with the u lower case. So type this line into your Ruby Console (do not cut and paste).


    Thanks for the find and reporting it. I will add it to the errata on the Support Page web page.

  37. Jim says:

    When I attempt to cleanup the arch cove trim (page 230)after slicing it, the cove face disappears. I selected the unwanted portion of the cove trim using a left to right motion. When I do, the entire cove portion of the trim (including what I want to keep)is selected. Any suggestions?

  38. Travis Floyd says:

    I have THOROUGHLY enjoyed your book! I had tried to model some projects on my own, and have learned a LOT about how to do it “right” with your help.

    While trying to install the Ruby Scripts in Section 8, I had a difficult time figuring out how to do it on my MAC. I am running OS X El Capitan, and I could not find where the Plugins Folder was!

    I finally found instructions to Open a Finder Window, Click “GO” in the menu bar, Press the Option Key, and Library is added to the menu list. Click that, and it takes you to the HIDDEN Library folder under the User’s personal folder. From here you can get to the \Application Support\SketchUp 2016\SketchUp\Plugins folder!

    Another note… You have a functioning Layers_2.2.rbz file in the chapter download for Chapter 8, but your ZIP file under your site “My Plugins” then “Layer Management Tool” wouldn’t install. Maybe you should replace the zip file with the Layers_2.2.rbz file. All in all, I learned how to do it manually, but the working file would have saved time.


  39. Joe says:

    Hi Travis,

    I am glad you found the book helpful and enjoyable. I wrote is as I myself was learning SketchUp and tried to capture most of what troubled me.

    I am almost exclusively a Windows/PC user, but I do have a Mac with OS X El Capitan just so I can answer SketchUp related questions from Mac users. I too struggle finding files and folders. Sounds like you developed you own technique.

    For future reference, there is no difference between an .zip file and a .rbz file. In fact all you do is start with a zipped .zip file and change the extension to .rbz. But I will definitely take you advice and update my web page. Thanks,


  40. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    Could you please send me a .skp file to look at ( When I get it a figure out what you are having troubles with I will send you email and post it here as well. But if you selected the curve at the end that defines the cove face then you will loose the cove face. Also, try menu View/Hidden Geometry to get a better idea of what you are selecting. Thanks,


  41. Gordon Runkle says:

    Dear Mr. Zeh:
    On page 128, in the first paragraph you write: “….captures the vertical sides and the top of the original trim…” I believe this should read: captures the vertical sides and the top of the 2nd trim piece. Similarly in the second paragraph where it reads: “top and bottom of the original trim.” I think it should read: of the third trim piece.

    In Figure 14, on page 128, there is a minor typo where it states: “primitives of the third rim” which I believe should read of the third trim.

    On page 157, the text says: “Use the completed Bedside Table reference model to check your progress and correctness.” In the drawing referred to the back is: on Layer: Back, Name: Back, and Definition: Back. The sides are: on Layer: Sides, Name: Left (or Right) and Definition: Sides. However, in the text, on page 74, we used: Layer: Aprons, Name: Back Apron, and Definition: Back Apron and Layer: Aprons, Name: Left (and Right) Apron, and Definition: Side Apron. I suggest that there should be a single consistent usage.

    Thank you and best wishes.

  42. Joe says:

    Hi Gordon,

    I should have hired you to review the manuscript and proof copies ;<) Thanks for the thorough read. I will add these comments to the errata on the book's support page. If I get the chance to put out a second edition these changes will be implemented. Joe...

  43. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    The problem is that your slicing plane doesn’t completely slice the arch. See images below.

    Slicing Plane


    Because the outside edge of the slicing plane is at an angle, I suspect it is also not at a right angle to the front and back edges. I would carefully recreate it. By the way, did you use the left to right motion or the right to left motion?


  44. Randy says:

    I have copied the link from your book SketchUp A Design Guide for Woodworkers into my browser to download the Bedside Table drawing. It merely gets me to your book page which does give me links, none of which get me the drawing. I’ve also tried the 3D Warehouse and searched for Bedside Table with no luck.

    A couple of comments on your book . . . I have some very limited experience with previous versions of SketchUp over the past couple of years, so I already have a basic knowledge of the drawing tools, etc. I find the explanations in your book confusing and wordy, in fact to the point of actually confusing my existing knowledge of SketchUp sometimes. I have picked up a few new pieces of information which are helpful. There are also a lot of errors in the text.

    Now, I find that, when I try to download your model to move on to your actual drawing chapters, none of your links actually get me to the model nor does it exist in the 3D Warehouse under the name Bedside Table.

    Please provide assistance concerning retrieving your models from the book.

  45. Joe says:

    Hi Randy,

    The link in the book is:

    When you pasted and followed this link it should have brought you to the page titled SketchUp: A Design Guide for Woodworkers. Immediately below the page title is the line “Note: For Chapter Download Files Click Here”, where Click Here is a link to “Sketchup: A Design Guide for Woodworkers Support Page” whose URL is:

    On that page you can scroll down a ways until you get the heading Downloads and below that heading are folder icons for each chapter. You are looking for the downloads for Chapter 3, so click on “Chapter 3”. There you will be asked if you want to Open or Save a zipped file which has all the files needed for Chapter 3. At the beginning of each chapter you can return here and get the files for those chapters.

    In addition, The next heading below “Support Files by Chapter” is “Sample SketchUp Models”. There you can download ten additional models.

    I apologize if I have confused you in the first two chapters. But I believe if you continue on your confusion will sort itself out and I hope your opinion of my book will change.

    If I can help further, please let me know.


  46. Randy says:

    Thanks for you help on downloading the files. Prior to your response I had already found all of those pages and the links, but didn’t get the pop-up message you indicated; still don’t. I was able to download the Bedside Table however. Maybe Google Chrome operates differently that Windows Explorer plus I have Windows 10 and Microsoft Edge may also perform differently that Explorer did. Thanks though.


  47. Joe says:

    Hi Randy,

    You will need to download a zipped file for each of the chapters, so if you are us Microsoft Edge here is what you need to do:

    1. Go to
    2. Click on the desired chapter link (see first image below)
    3. The download will start and the progress will be shown at the bottom of the page (see bottom of first image below)
    4. When the download is finished you will see the message shown in the second image below
    5. You can now choose either Open or View downloads

    The zipped file will be in your Downloads folder unless you have changed the default download folder for Edge. Hope this helps.




  48. Mike Epprecht says:

    I am unable to access any of your support pages. Also, I have Sketchup Make Version 16, is there much of change from the book?
    Thanks, book is great, just got stuck on a couple of things.

  49. Joe says:

    Hi Mike,

    Can you tell me a little more about why you are unable to access the books support page? The link for the support page is:

    Do you have problems accessing this link? What browser are you using?

    There is very little difference between SketchUp Make 2015 and 2016. In 2016 there are a few icon changes, but they are minor. E.g. The pan tool has a flesh colored hand instead of a white hand. The major visual difference is that in the Windows version all of SketchUp’s significant dialog boxes have been grouped into a tray on the right side of the screen, instead of floating in the work area. There are two Window menu commands for managing the tray and they are very obvious.

    Thanks for the feedback. If you give me some more info on the support pages problem I would be glad to help. Also, see post #47, my reply to Randy. It may help you.


  50. Jim says:

    Page 237, Fig.2. The flat is shown as 1/8″. It should be 1/4″.

    To fit the router profile, I used Fredo’s cubic BezierSpline plugin. It produces a profile that goes through each of the control points.

  51. Jim says:

    After reading your response to Randy and Mike Epprecht,please note that the path listed on Page 16 leaves out the word “design.” I should have mentioned this earlier.

  52. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    Yes, that is the plugin I use to teach, but when the SketchUp Team came out with Bezier Curve Tool I found it easier for first time Bezier students to use. There are a lot of Bezier plugins, but Fredo’s may well be the best, especially his cubic Bezier.


  53. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    Regarding the flat dimension shown on Page 237, Figure 2; you are correct that it should be 1/4″. However, if you download the .skp file I provided for Chapter 14 you will see that the flat is 1/8″. The difference is where I started the Bezier curve. In the book it was at the mid-point of the top’s edge. In the .skp file I started 3/8″ up from the bottom of the edge. My bad for not being consistent.


  54. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    Actually, either you or someone else did point that out earlier. It is item 1 on my errata list. See . Also, whether you include the word design or not you will get the same content on that page because I created a page with the URL to catch this problem. Thanks for the careful eye and a willingness to report these things.


  55. craig nelson says:

    On page 16, second column, third full paragraph beginning with “Throughout this book I will”

    Mistake at the end of the paragraph. As an example you use the command Edit/Intersect Faces/With Selection

    however, when you walk the reader through how to execute that command, you make the error by saying “and finally selecting With Model”

  56. Joe says:

    Hi Craig,

    Nice catch and thanks for reporting it. I have added it to the errata list on the book’s support page ( ).

    Also, thanks for purchasing my book. I hope you find it useful.


  57. Jim says:

    It’s me again. You lost me on page 260. Per page 259, I made the profile a Group and created a rotated copy. On page 260, you say extrude both profiles 5″ in both directions. My problem is how do you extrude the edge of a zero thickness profile? The missing step is to give each profile a thickness (1 1/2″), right? Or did you really mean to extrude the faces of the profiles 5″? The figure on page 260 looks like the faces were extruded 1 1/2″ and then the edges extruded 5″.

  58. Jim says:

    Please ignore the stupid question I sent earlier. If I had tried it instead of over thinking it I would have been O.K.

  59. Joe says:

    Hi Jim,

    There are no stupid questions and I appreciate all the feedback and corrections you have given me. Now get to work and finish the book.


  60. craig nelson says:

    Hi Joe, love the book!

    I’m stalled a bit in the workspace chapter. On page 23 you mention the view/toolbars command.. however I don’t have such a command. I do however have view/tool palettes command. Is that what you are referring to? I also don’t seem to have the list of toolbars you suggest we open on page 23 (8 of them). I do see some of those scattered around but they are not together as you mention. Also I don’t have the Getting Started toolbar showing in the list of Tool Palettes. I’m running 2015 and 2016 – same issue with either.

    Thanks again for the great book!


  61. craig nelson says:

    Joe please disregard my last comment/questions … I jumped the gun a little. I’m on a Mac – and I just saw your referral to Appdx A. Sorry!


  62. Joe says:

    Hi Craig,

    No problem! And I am glad you like the book. Don’t hesitate to post or right me via email if you have a question.


  63. craig nelson says:

    Hi Joe, having a blast going through your excellent instruction. But I’d love to view this on my iPad (which you probably know doesn’t have a dvd reader).

    Do you know of a way to copy if over and view this on the iPad? Thanks!


  64. Joe says:

    Hi Craig,

    I’m confused. Do you have a copy of my book on DVD? I wasn’t aware that they were selling it in DVD format. Does your iPad handle PDF files? If so the book is available in that format at:

    Thank you for purchasing my book and if you need help I am always available.


  65. James M Kent says:

    Re: Pg 16 “References to Tools and Menus:” info Window menu does not appear to coincide with Sketchup version 2016

  66. Joe says:

    Hi James,

    That is correct. The book was published in December of 2015 and written for SketchUp 2015. Just a few days later SketchUp 2016 came out and in the PC version they changed the Window menu. They moved most of the dialog boxes on the 2015 Window menu to a Default Tray (and you can also have a custom tray) in 2016. So the first thing that appears in the Window menu now is the Default Tray. If you choose it you will see the dialog boxes that use to be in the Window menu. The tray is positioned on the right hand of the screen and is quite useful. Sadly, the SketchUp development team didn’t see fit to make the same change in the Mac version.

    If you need further help with 2016 changes let me know. But I think you will find them rather minor.


  67. Mike says:

    Hi Joe:

    First let me say – Fantastic Book! I am recently retired and while I have used Sketchup in the past I struggled with it (especially if I haven’t used in a while). After moving through the book I am amazed how powerful it is. This is a great reference I can go back to “re-learn” if I need to to.

    Having said that, I proceeded through the book with few problems until Chapter 11. I made the splayed leg but I am having real difficulty with changing the bounding box using change axis. I did it once but can’t reproduce it. Also when I did change the box I had problems positioning the legs on the rectangle so that the leg bottom lied flat.

    Please advise with any hints. (also FYI I am using a Mac).

    Thanks much,


  68. Joe says:

    Hi Mike,

    Can you please send me your .skp file to ? I will look at the problem you are having and send you a procedure. I will also post it here for others to see. Thanks,


  69. Vic says:


    Great book! I’m on an iMac and things are fine so far, but I’m at the point where I want to install Ruby Scripts. Layers Mgmt and Bezier Curve Tool installed OK, but at the Extension Warehouse, the Weld installation reports: “This extension has not been marked as being compatible with your version of SketchUp. You may experience usability issues if you try to install this extension.” I note that I have Version 16.0.19913 copyright 2015. Is this going to be an issue if I install it??

  70. Vic says:


    PS: I don’t see your Consruction Plus tool set anywhere at all.

  71. Joe says:

    Hi Vic,

    No, it works fine. I have it installed on my machine and have no problems. I’m glad you like the book and thanks for purchasing it.


  72. Joe says:

    Hi Vic,

    Sounds like you didn’t get my plugins from the correct place. You should be getting your installation files from the book’s Support Page ( ). Since Ruby scripts are introduced in Chapter 8 of the book go to the Support Page and scroll down until you see a Chapter 8 hyperlink next to a folder and click on the hyperlink. Depending on the web browser you are using you will be asked to ”Open with’ or ‘Save File’. Choose ‘Save File’ and you will download a ZIP folder. Unzip it and there will be three folders. In each folder there will be a .rbz installation file. Drag and drop the .rbz file to your desktop or any folder you choose, but be sure to remember where you put it. Now you can use SketchUp/Preferences/Extensions/Install Extension with these files. The other chapters work the same way.

    Let me know if you still have problems.


  73. Vic says:


    Oops. Sorry Joe, I had seen the support page, just didn’t follow thru and download it. All’s good – thanks!

  74. Larry Pasha says:

    There could be an error in chapter 12 page 207 where we are directed to copy the leg, move it along a construction line and eventually get 3 copies all properly placed. If there is not an error or omission in the instructions, then I am about as thick as a fence post as I can not figure out how to follow the instructions and end up with the correct conclusion.

  75. Larry Pasha says:

    Joe, please disregard my previous message. I finally figured out I was attempting to perform the task with the “move/copy” tool rather than the “rotate/copy” tool. Previous to your book, I never considered the rotate tool as also a copy tool, I think this contributed to my problem. 🙂

  76. Joe says:

    Hi Larry,

    Glad you discovered the trouble on your own. Most SketchUp Modelers don’t understand how Copy works, let alone Rotate/Copy. So now count yourself among the enlightened. ;<) You will use this technique again to put the tacks on the seat cover if you finish the stool. Have fun. Joe....

  77. Allen Hills says:

    Page 138, lower left: I’m OK with “Right click the Home View
    Scene tab and choose Update.” However, I have no idea how to complete or the intent of the following instruction “Select “Save as new
    style” and Update.”
    Thanks. Allen

  78. Joe says:

    Hi Allen,

    Hmmmm, you got me. I believe what I was trying to say is that you just changed the current style by changing from Camera/Parallel Projection to Camera/Perspective, therefore you should rename the style to something like Perspective and click the “Update Style with changes” icon (two semi-circle arrows on the right) in the Styles menu. I will add this to the Errata section on the Support Page.

    Thanks for the sharp eye and for purchasing my book.


  79. Scott Moran says:

    Hi Joe, really enjoying your Sketchup textbook. I tried to download the Layers Management tool into v.2016 Make for Mac, but I get an “unable to install extension for some unknown reason” message. This is after I change the suffix from .rb to .rbz (icon remains grayed out and unselectable until I do that). Any known compatibility issues with v.2016 and/or Mac?
    Many thanks, Scott

  80. Joe says:

    Hi Scott,

    I am not sure where you downloaded the installation file from, but you should not need to change a file extension. I will send you the correct installation file via email.


  81. Scott Sante says:

    Hi Joe,
    Like a few others, I have downloaded the Layers Management tool and am having difficulties with finding/using it. I have Sketchup Make 2016 on a Window 10 PC. When I install it, Windows reports the two (optional?) dialog boxes confirming that it installed successfully. I now have a “…\Plugins\Layers-Management” folder with the file layer_2.2.rbz in it.

    The problem is that the View Menu does not have any Layer_0_Warn option nor does the Toolbar dialog box have any Layer Mgmt options to check. Window/Preferences/Extensions does not show an option check, either.

    Any suggestions?

    I am very glad I bought your book as I struggled for a year with Sketchup and you cleared up several problems I had in just the first few sections! Thank you!

  82. Scott Sante says:

    Immediately after posting my previous plea for help, I decided to try installing the .rbz file directly from the “…\Plugins\Layers-Management” folder instead of the Downloads folder as I had been doing.

    Everything is now running correctly and is visible as you describe in your book.

    I summize that the .zip file (which I changed to an .rbz file) only ‘unzipped’ the extension while creating the appropriate folders and copying the layers_2.2.rbz file. It did not seem to actually get SketchUp to recognize the extension. Is this normal behavior?

    Just for the record i downloaded the file at least four times and tried installing each instance getting the same result each time. Only when I installed the extension from the path returned by the Sketchup.find command did it work.

  83. Joe says:

    Hi Scott,

    I apologize for getting back to you so late. Every year this time my rather large family – I have 11 siblings – has a family reunion and people come from all across the country. It ties me up for a few days. By the way, thanks for purchasing my book. I really appreciate that.

    I think your problem started when you changed the .zip file to a .rbz extension and tried to install it. My General explanation in the book of how to install a Ruby script is probably the cause of the confusion. It is true that a SketchUp Ruby Script extension with a .zip file extension can be changed to a .rbz file extension and installed as I described.

    However, not all .zip files are SketchUp Ruby Script Extensions, and that is the case here if you downloaded the extensions from the Chapter 8 download folder on my web site support page. If you open that .zip file you will notice three folders: Construction-Plus, CutList-Bridge and Layers-Management. In the Layers-Management folder is a PDF version of the installation procedure and a simple user’s guide and the .rbz installation file called layer_2.2.rbz. It is this latter file that you should copy to your desktop and then follow the procedure from step 3 onward on page 141 of the book. The same is true of the other two folders.

    I am not clear on how you finally got the Layers Management tool installed and working, but if it is working as I described you are probably OK. Hope this helps.


  84. Tandy Penn says:

    Is there a PDF version of your book available. I heard your talk at the woodworking show and thought you said there was but I have been unable to find it. I did get the paperback version from amazon, but they didn’t have a PDF version.

  85. Joe says:

    Hi Tandy,

    Yes, there is a PDF version, though it is only available through the Popular Woodworking On-Line Store. Here is the link:

    Thank you for your patronage. I very much appreciate it.


  86. Alan McDonald says:

    In chapter 6: given Figs. 10 and 12, Fig. 11 should be reversed, so that the front is to the left in all three. That would save some mental gymnastics needed to relate Fig. 11 to the dovetail modeling.

  87. Joe says:


    Some how I missed this post when it was originally posted. I sincerely apologize. I am usually very prompt in approving a replying to posts. I have no ideal how I missed yours, but again I am very sorry.

    You are correct. Figure 12 on page 195 should be reversed. I will add this to the errata and correct it in a revision. Thanks for purchasing my book.


  88. Parker says:


    On the chapter review, page 71, the last two paragraphs in first column both are referring to the “back left leg”. In the second to last column it should have said “we copied and mirrored the left front leg to the right front leg position” correct? Not even a big deal, but I know you want to make sure things are clarified. Sorry if this has already been asked.

  89. Joe says:

    Hi Parker,

    Thank your for purchasing my book. I very much appreciate it. Also thank you for taking the time to point out an error in the book. Your observation is correct and I will add this to the errata list on the book support page.


  90. Adam Brayshaw says:

    Joe –
    I am working through your Sketchup book. As I made progress, I’ve upgraded to Sketchup Make 2017, working around the obvious changes to how Sketchup accesses things differently since version 2014. However, when I get to Chapter 8, I have not been able to find any way to get SU to sucessfully install your Layer Management plugin.
    Do you have any updated files/instructions to use with SU 2017?
    This is an extremely well-written book, BTW. I’ve learned so much in the first 7 chapters.

  91. Joe says:

    Hi Adam,

    Glad you are finding the book helpful. I will email you an installation procedure that should get you back on track. Thanks for purchasing my book. I really appreciate it.


  92. Scott Pettigrew says:

    Trying to learn sketchup (for the 4th time!) and I’m stuck on pg 63. Not sure, but could be due to the new version of sketchup I’m using. I created a layer called “legs”, but where the book says “In the Entry Info dialog box, use the Layer drop-down…” I don’t have a layer drop-down in the Entry Info box.

    I have layer0 and a layer called legs, but clicking them on and off does not add or remove the leg.

  93. Joe says:

    Hi Scott,

    Thanks very much for purchasing my book. I am glad to help with any problem and answer any question. See the attached image to see where you can find the Entity Info layer drop down. What operating system are you on and what version of SketchUp are you using? It could make a difference.

    Also, if you wish you can write me directly with questions at . Always tell me the operating system, SketchUp version and include your .skp file. Also, as detailed a description of your problem as possible would help.

    Entity Info layer drop down


  94. JKJ says:

    Just received your book and going through marking all the Errata.

    Number 13 states: Page 195, Figure 11 should be reversed in the horizontal direction to be consistent with Figures 10 and 11

    There is no figure 11 on page 195.

    There is, however, a figure 11 on page 105

    Also, Errata #13 doesn’t make sense as written: “Fig 11 should be reversed … to be consistent with Figs 10 and 11.


  95. Joe says:

    Hi Jordan,

    I apologize if Jordan isn’t your first name. And thanks very much for both buying my book and pointing out a mistake in my errata. I guess that is a hierarchical errata when you have to correct an errata ;<). I am not able to reconstruct the original error at this moment. But I am going to look carefully through the book tonight and try to figure it out. I will get back to you tomorrow. Thanks again. Joe....

  96. Joe says:

    Hi Again Jordan,

    Mystery solved. Here is what the errata should have said:

    Page 105, Figure 11 should be reversed in the horizontal direction to be consistent with Figures 10 and 11 through 19. This would put the front details on the left in all figures.

    I apologize for the mistake and will fix it immediately. Thanks for your help,


  97. emmett herman says:

    sent you an email sunday but i still need help cutlist bridge 4 extension manager in sketchup 2017 make says the extension has an invalid signature. how can fix that?

  98. Joe says:

    Hi Glen,

    Did you install the latest version I gave you a link to? It’s version 4.4.


  99. Ahmed ELSaadawi says:

    Hi Joe,
    I went to buy your book on Amazon but was not able to get an online version of it. With the current COVID 19 pandemic, it is quite difficult to rely on shipping the book around especially to where i live, so i was wondering if you can advise how (and if) i could purchase a e-version of the book. Thanks in advance for your support. Stay well and safe.

  100. Joe says:

    Hi Ahmed,

    There has never been an on-line version, but Popular Woodworking use to sell a PDF version for $19.99. Popular Woodworking has gone out of business. If you want to pay via PayPal I can email a copy to you. My email address is


  101. Ray says:

    Hi Joe,
    I’m considering the purchase of your book. Just wondering what version of Sketchup you reference in your book, and of any plans for updating to the latest version of Sketchup PRO 20?

  102. Joe says:

    Hi Ray,

    The book was written for version 2015, but the differences between 2015 and 2020 are not insurmountable. A lot of people have used it to learn on 2020 and any problems you have I will help you through. I have tried several times to convince my publisher to allow me to update the text. They don’t believe it would be cost effective. I wish I could.


  103. Georges Patrick Savaria says:

    Hello, up to now (I am at chapter 3) there is what seems a missing drawing. At page 38 figure (1) one there is 4 drawings. On page 40 you state “the fifth drawins in figure (1).
    Also on the questions of the layer manager, in sketchup 2017 make, dowloaded recently, you do not acces to it by the layer manager extension does not show when you check the layers toolbar. After searching for a wile, I foud you could create layers by manage default trays/manage trays.
    Hope this is any help.

  104. Georges Patrick Savaria says:

    Hello, up to now (I am at chapter 3) there is what seems a missing drawing. At page 38 figure (1) one there is 4 drawings. On page 40 you state “the fifth drawins in figure (1).
    Also on the questions of the layer manager, in sketchup 2017 make, dowloaded recently, you do not acces to it by the window/Layers menu. This being said you may add layers by the tray manager : window/manage trays.

    Hope this is any help.

  105. Georges Patrick Savaria says:

    Hello, as a correction or précision on my initial comment:

    On the questions of the layer manager, in sketchup 2017 make, dowloaded recently, you do not acces to it by the window/Layers menu. This being said you may add layers by the tray manager : window/manage trays.

    Hope this is any help.

  106. Joe says:

    Hi Georges,

    You will find the Errata section for my book at this link about half way down the page.

    You will find the fifth figure there. Also, the book was written when SketchUp’s latest version was 2015. The Default Tray was added in 2017. Thanks for the feedback.


  107. Joe says:

    Hi Georges,

    Yes, the tray gives you access to all the dialog boxes that use to be under the Window menu.


  108. Ernest Jensen says:


    Re: “Add Invisible Layer” with latest version of SketchUp Pro does not appear to work. The “invisible layers” I add are not invisible to later and other scenes. Unless I am missing something obvious and assuming there really is a problem, it is possible the error is related to SU’s change in vocabulary: What we used to call “Layers” are now called “Tags”. If I have correctly identified and described an incompatibility’ is there a work around or fix available?

    Thanks, Ernie

  109. Joe says:

    Hi Ernie,

    Can you give me some more information? What OS are you using and what version? Are you sure you are using the correct icon; the one with the red plus sign and the white background? I have tested it a number of times since your post and it seems to work fine. I am using SketchUp 2020 Pro and Windows 10 Pro. I don’t have a Mac to try it on. So perhaps that is a problem. Let me know your OS and version.