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Forum topic by Bob42 posted 01-19-2011 03:35 PM 1612 views 2 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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456 posts in 3786 days

01-19-2011 03:35 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question resource

What is the best way to learn sketchup? I have tried in the past and had trouble. I downloaded version 8. Please help.

-- Bob K. East Northport, NY

15 replies so far

View VinnieP's profile


141 posts in 3317 days

#1 posted 01-19-2011 04:34 PM

Do a search on lumberjocks. There are tons of posts on this subject. They have links to free tutorials. There are a lot of videos on youtube and google.

There is also a book called Sketchup for Woodworkers if you would rather have something to hold.

View rpalm's profile


57 posts in 3376 days

#2 posted 01-19-2011 04:40 PM

Check out Chiefwoodworker’s videos on Sketchup. Best free tutorials I’ve found.


-- Robert, I don't understand everything I know about this.

View PurpLev's profile


8535 posts in 3644 days

#3 posted 01-19-2011 04:47 PM

I would start with the SketchUp tutorial videos on youtube made BY SketchUp which cover the basics of using SketchUp – drawing, moving, etc. each video focuses on a single tool, and is easier to follow along as a beginner than a video that discusses the use of several tools all mixed together.

Also Bob, feel free to PM me with any questions you may have.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View IrreverentJack's profile


727 posts in 2838 days

#4 posted 01-19-2011 04:50 PM

Robert beat me to it. Joe Zeh’s videos are great. -Jack

View Jonathan's profile


2608 posts in 3046 days

#5 posted 01-19-2011 05:02 PM

And if you don’t find the above tutorials to your liking, Barry just did a review on purchased SketchUp tutorials here:

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

View Bob42's profile


456 posts in 3786 days

#6 posted 01-19-2011 05:15 PM

Thanks all. I am going to try the Chiefwoodworkers video first and see how I do.

PurpLev, Thanks I will take you up on it if needed.

-- Bob K. East Northport, NY

View Don Johnson's profile

Don Johnson

685 posts in 2776 days

#7 posted 01-19-2011 06:17 PM

I definitely agree that Chiefwoodworker’s videos are well worth viewing. I had ‘played’ with Sketchup, watched the introduction videos, and felt that I understood the general principles and the various tools, but had considerable difficulty in actually creating something ‘real’ from specific dimensions.
After following Jos’s ‘Drawing a Basic Bedside Table’, I ‘got’ the idea of using Components and Layers – which I had previously though would only be needed for complicated designs. Once I grasped this concept, I found I could readily create drawings with parts going where I wanted them rather than their attaching to, and distorting, existing parts.
It takes a little time to create components and layers – thinking up names for example – but once done, I KNOW which part I am modifying when I edit it.

-- Don, Somerset UK,

View Jonathan's profile


2608 posts in 3046 days

#8 posted 01-19-2011 06:22 PM

This is the first time I’ve heard of the Chiefwoodworker’s tutorials. I plan on going through and watching all of them, sometime in the next few days.

Thank you for posting the link. Maybe this will save me a few bucks!

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

View northwoodsman's profile


242 posts in 3742 days

#9 posted 01-20-2011 06:08 AM

I purchased a downloadable e-book called “SketchUp Guide for Woodworkers” from Fine Woodworking that is specific to woodworking. It begins with designing a template that you begin each project with and progresses on to advanced items. In each chapter you create a project using new tools and techniques that build on the previous chapter. I’m going to check out Chiefwoodworkers tutorials, but this download from Fine Woodorking is great. It was around $10.00. This is the 4th time that I have attempted to learn SketchUp and this is the only thing that has worked.

-- NorthWoodsMan

View lew's profile


12056 posts in 3751 days

#10 posted 01-21-2011 02:49 AM

I recently got the book called “Google Sketchup- The Missing Manual” ISBN: 978-0-596-52146-2.

Although I had been playing with the program and received help from several lumberjocks, I still had troubles. This book has been helpful. Like virtually every “how-to” manual, there are still some unanswered questions but I am getting better at Sketchup.


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View SouthpawCA's profile


270 posts in 3229 days

#11 posted 01-21-2011 03:40 AM

I 2nd Bob Lang’s videos. I’ve tried the others with some success, but Bob Lang explained it more – like when and why to use components and when/why to use groups.

-- Don

View schroeder's profile


702 posts in 4121 days

#12 posted 01-21-2011 05:45 AM

Fine Woodworking online mag – Sketchup for woodworkers – by woodworkers – it’s the best for what we do…


-- The Gnarly Wood Shoppe

View Richard's profile


1916 posts in 2686 days

#13 posted 01-21-2011 05:46 AM

This site helped me a lot with getting started on it. He uses a Mac but also shows how to use a PC.

View hianupam's profile


20 posts in 2678 days

#14 posted 01-21-2011 06:02 AM

I am currently reading Sketch-Up Guide for Woodworkers (eBook). I bought it at taunton press for ~9 bucks. Really helpful.

-- Measure Twice, Cut Once

View Bob42's profile


456 posts in 3786 days

#15 posted 01-23-2011 02:57 PM

Thanks again to all, So far the chiefwoodworkers video has helped a great deal and it’s free. I am still working on it as time allows. I will probably follow that up with the Bob Lang video’s.

-- Bob K. East Northport, NY

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