A new feature for the Sketchup drawing tools?

Hi All,

The modifications to the tape measure tool in SU2019 got me thinking how a similar concept could be applied to any of SU’s drawing tools- (line, rectangle, polygon, circle, arc etc…)

From the point of view of my own workflow, the process described below would remove a step in my current drawing process. Namely, creating a construction guide/point to determine the starting position of a new entity, relative to another entity. I don’t know how many times per day I use the ‘delete guides’ function!

Please feel free to point me to an extension that does this…I have not been able to find anything to date.

Let’s assume I have drawn a simple rectangle, flat on the ground plane. My rectangle measures 10m x 10m (sorry, we do metric in AU). Lets say I am drawing a floor plan and I want to start a new line 90mm in from any given corner of my rectangle. My typical next step would be to first draw a guide point/line to give me my new starting position.

So how about this?:

  1. select the line tool
  2. hover over any vertex of my rectangle
  3. tap a modifier key, no need to hold it down. This could be any key and, indeed, user definable. This action commits to memory this ‘reference point’
  4. Now from this reference point, I move my cursor in any direction along the edge of my rectangle and as I do so info is displayed about where my cursor is in relation to this reference point. Its displayed at my mouse cursor and also in the ‘measurements box’.
  5. I push my mouse along the edge until reach a value of 90mm. I can now click and begin drawing my new line as usual.

Voilà! No guides required.

As an Alternative to manually arriving at my new starting position by moving the mouse, I could enter this value using my keyboard after picking my reference point. i.e. I simply type ’90mm’ into the measurements box and my cursor snaps to my new position ready for me to start a new line. There would obviously have to be some sort of inference locking involved here to determine the direction etc.

Further, this initial ’memorised’ reference point could be any point generated by the inference engine such as a midpoint on an edge, the centre of a drawn circle, a guide point/line, or the drawing axis itself.

This could be applied to the move tool too.

I’d be interested to see if any other users out there might find this useful…

PS. It looks as if other users have tried to find a solution to this in the past:

1 Like

However it is not exactly what you described, but some concept (e.g. get on-off the construction lines, points" automatically", the “memorized” point… etc.) seems to be similar in one of my unfinished but published plugin:

You may find it useful…
(Probably I could take into consideration your requirements … :wink: , no deadline I can promise…)

I added this feature to my tool, this is a demo video

1 Like

What you are describing is, in a way, the moving of the Sketching Context.
If you rightclick on the Axis, it will popup in the context menu.

Note. You can set a shortcut for the ‘Place Axis’ tool, but you cannot for the Move Axis context item…

1 Like

I believe S4U’s custom line tool can use inferences for the initial point …

https://extensions.sketchup.com/en/content/s4u-linetool


More generally, it has been discussed in the past that the native tools need to also do this, but it hasn’t percolated to the top of the “todo” list.

You’re right, this is not exactly what I describe but looks useful in its own right. Thanks for the input

Hi there, I watched the video and this looks, at first glance, to be what I’m looking for. only thing is, I can’t seem to find Curic DIO in the extension warehouse. Where do I download it?

You can get DIO here!

2 Likes