All posts filed under: Tim Killen

Creating a Complex Crest Rail in SketchUp

When I published a post about the second design for my daughter’s new bookcase, I got an interesting comment from Dennis. Among other things, Dennis suggested I add a subtle curve to the top of the crest rail to soften the look of the bookcase. I liked this idea and started the process of adding another curve to my SketchUp model. But making this modification to my model was a lot more difficult than I had planned. While I know the process needed to remove three curved planes from a square SketchUp component, after repeated attempts, I had a crest rail with multiple errors. Since I want to know how to correctly accomplish this process, I called on Dave Richards, a SketchUp master who writes at Fine Woodworking.com and has published an exceptional instructional DVD on SketchUp. I emailed Dave my model and naturally, he had a different and simplified way to create the crest rail. Below is what Dave taught me along with some steps of mine to break the crest rail into three …

SketchUp Tip: Get to Know the Scroll Wheel

When watching a video showing SketchUp instruction, one of the things I pay attention to is how the mouse is being used. In my early days of using SketchUp, I was always intrigued by people like Tim Killen and Dave Richards because they could so effortlessly move around a model (there are plenty of things they do which still intrigue me). I later learned how this was possible – it was through activating the mouse scroll wheel, usually in conjunction with some other action. Forget grabbing the pan tool, or clicking on the zoom tool, or reaching for the orbit tool. Eliminating these extra steps starts with the scroll wheel. The two images you see above are from SketchUp’s Quick Reference Card (download it here). When I first saw this card, I was a little overwhelmed by all the information it attempts to communicate. In fact the printer I used at the time had a hard time clearly printing the tiny font used. But, the Quick Reference Card contains many golden nuggets of tips leading …

Getting Help With a SketchUp Model

I just completed my latest assignment for Sawtooth Ideas. The image above shows what is called a “Pendulum Doll Cradle” taken from an issue of Woodcraft magazine. When I get the email with a new assignment, I always look forward to opening the woodworking plan and looking through the project. I immediately saw this one as something to test my skills since I have not recently attempted creating anything like the spindles needed (read on for more about the spindles). In the image above, note the eased edges on many of the horizontal surfaces. I was nearing completion of the model when I realized I would have to round-over many of the component edges. This was a challenge requiring the use of the offset tool and the follow-me tool. I had some clean-up to do after this process; I am sure there is a plugin which would have worked better, but that would require me to find the plug-in, install it and learn how it works. I didn’t have the time for all of that. …