Adapting construction lines

Construction lines are very useful and second nature to architects and draftsmen. It is also great to be able to extinguish them all at once, as you can in SU. But there are times when it would be useful to be able to keep selected ones, say as reference centrelines. It is also handy that they show in LO as faint dotted lines.

So what I would like to suggest is an option when you invoke Delete Guides, say to Delete All or Delete Selected. AFAIK, you cannot protect them by having them inside Groups or Components as Delete Guides does what it says on the tin and deletes all, wherever they are.

@simoncbevans your FR seems unnecessary to me because if you select some set of guides, you can already delete just those ones by pressing the delete key (or Edit->Delete, or whatever your favorite shortcut)! The whole point of Delete Guides is to kill them wherever they hide so that you don’t have to pre-select them.

I didn’t make myself clear then! I want to be able to keep using Delete Guides to delete them all at a stroke but with the ability to ring fence certain ones. If you always had to select and delete, not only would the task be laborious but there would be a danger you would still delete ones you meant to keep by mistake. Maybe what I am after needs a different solution? Like a means of selecting and protecting from the Delete Guides comprehensive blitz!

I wonder if there is an available extension that would allow you to “Select All Guides”, then you could shift-click on the ones you want to keep (thus UN selecting them). Once you’ve unselected the ones you want to keep, the <delete> key will rid your model of those still remaining.

I looked at @thomthom’s Selection Toys, but didn’t see a way to select Guide lines with it’s edge tools. I did not take the time to download it and experiment, so the ability may be there, just not self-evident in the Extension Warehouse description.

Maybe the key is that you want this tool to be able to select across multiple edit contexts? Otherwise I still don’t get it. You can fence select guides already…

Or is it that you want to select ONLY guides even when the fence includes other entities?

Thanks to @sjdorst and @slbaumgartner for suggestions but I am not sure whether I am not explaining myself well enough or whether the facility I want is there but I’m too dim to have found it!

On a single operation, it s of course easy to select, deselect, and delete. The problem comes with using the Delete Guides option. Of course, you could simply decide never to use it. But I do find it very handy and use it all the time. It saves a lot of time compared to selecting and deleting. But it means that I cannot keep any construction lines at all if I do. So my ideal here would be to identify lines I want to keep and “protect” them from the Delete Guides command. Clearly, there would have to be a means of unprotecting them as well.

Here’s an example. I do a drawing based on centrelines which I set up at the outset. Then I use a host of other construction lines. When I’m done, I want to delete all construction lines except the original centrelines. Instead of selecting all guidelines, then going in and looking for the ones I want to keep (and hoping I haven’t missed one) and deselecting them, before finally deleting, I would have identified the ones I wanted to keep when I created them in the sure knowledge that a blanket Delete Guides would leave them standing.

Why not draw your center lines using the Line tool. You can group them and put them on their own layer so you can show them or not as desired.

This clarifies for me that what you seek is a sort of “flag” that can be set/cleared on a selected guide or set of guides to protect them from deletion. There are a bunch of analogous flags on other entities, so this isn’t so far fetched. The closest equivalent is a locked group or component can’t be edited. Seen that way it makes sense!

Dave, I have thought of that but the problem is that the lines then all look the same. If we had different line types or colours in SU, that’s probably the workaround I would use.

@slbaumgartner You have it in a nutshell! An on/off flag is exactly what I am after.

I just tried an experiment. I created a rectangle, pulled it up to have some thickness, then placed guide lines on all 12 edges.

Next, I selected only the 4 vertical guides, right clicked to see if “lock” appeared – it didn’t. So while they were still selected, I put them in a component, selected the component, right clicked - and was able to “lock” them - they all turned red - so far, so good!

But then I tried “Delete Guides” and the went away - as did the component containing them.

So locking guide lines as part of a locked component doesn’t protect them from the “Delete Guides” command.

I think @Dave’s suggestion:

is as close as you’ll come to what you want to do using existing features.

As for this as a Feature Request? I don’t see where I’d use it, and I suspect it’s utility for most SU users would be nil. So even if Trimble “puts it on the list”, I expect it to be so low priority that it might appear in the 2022 version!

But you could make those lines a different color if you want.

Can I? Without having to set up a special style option?

Here’s a drawing as an example. The lines running down the centres of the walls are centrelines of foundations (the blue parts). Ideally, they would be broken lines but you can’t do that in SU (you kindly showed me how to do it in LO). It would be nearly as good to have them in red, say. How would you do that and leave everything else unchanged?

True. I didn’t mean to suggest that it would. The lock on a group or component prevents a user from opening it for edit via the GUI. You can’t normally edit contents of a group or component without opening it, and if you can’t open it you can’t alter it. But Delete Guides already operates across all contexts without the user opening any of them!

That said, I agree that this FR may appeal to a limited audience…

Test.skp (224.5 KB)

If you apply a material to an edge and turn on “color by material” in the style, those edges will get that color instead of the default.

Is a line on its own (ie unattached to a surface) an “edge” or does this only work for solids?

All non faces are edges. There are no lines in SketchUp. Lines are a 2D concept.

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I did a few of the centerlines in your model to illustrate the idea.

Test.skp (226.7 KB)