Capturing objects from inside another!



I’m new to SketchUp and I’m using it to try and remodel my bathroom.
First, I created a rectangular box that represented the internal dimensions of the bathroom, added two rectangular shapes to represent a window and a door and then deposited a bath and a toilet inside my box. I now want to position the bath and the toilet in the desired locations before adding a sink and a shower. However, I can no longer pick up either object since placing them totally inside the box. I also do not know how to ‘choose’ the internal walls so that I can decorate.
I’m going to listen to the new starter videos (only managed to contain my patience to start to the first one so far) and I’m sure I will come across a solution. However, in the mean time I thought I would call upon the SketchUp community.
So, in anticipation of not having to view every last second of the training videos, thank you all in advance for any advice or clues.


There are a lot more details you will need to spell out before anyone can give specific help. It would be useful if you can upload your SketchUp file so we can see what you are talking about.

For example, have you created Groups or Components for any of your items? You say you “deposited a bath and toilet inside my box”, but you can “no longer pick up either object”. How did you put them in there? I don’t understand why you can’t get to them to manipulate them the same way. Do you mean that they now pull parts of the box with them when you move them? Or that they are “glued” to the floor of the box? Too many possibilities to be sure what to say…


Thank you for response.
The file is too big to upload (possibly because the uploaded files of the bath and toilet are quite detailed, as a new user I have not taken much notice of file sizes so far).
I have not created any groups or components.
I uploaded a sample bath file and toilet file from the sketch 3D ware house and simply dragged them into an approximate position. Now I cannot find a way to click and pick up the bath or the toilet. I can only pick up the outer surfaces of the six sides of the rectangular box. I have no idea how to get inside my box!


There are several ways to go about this, each with some advantages and disadvantages. The main aspect of all of them is to get to a point where the items inside the box are visible so that you can select them. You need to get the faces of the box out of the way.

One way is to select one or more faces of the box and make them into a Group. Create a new layer and associate the Group with that layer. Then turn off visibility of that layer. You will then be able to see inside the box and manipulate items there. In many cases you will want the walls to be Grouped and to have a layer for them anyway, so this is not necessarily wasted effort.

An alternative that is more likely to get you into trouble is to hide the faces themselves. This has a very similar effect as the previous, but a serious downside: SketchUp doesn’t keep a tidy record of what is hidden or when you hid it. It only provides “unhide last” and “unhide all”, and sometime “unhide” either gets more than you wanted or fails to get everything (e.g. it works only within the current edit context; it won’t affect hidden entities inside Groups or Components). It is very easy to get confused about what is hidden.

Yet another way is to temporarily delete faces of the box. Then they obviously can’t be in the way because they don’t exist any more. Provided you don’t also delete the edges, you can easily regenerate the faces later by tracing any edge with the line tool.


Every Face in SketchUp has two surfaces, or sides. After you select a face, in the entity info window, you will see two rectangles showing the materials applied to the “front” and “back” of the selected face. By clicking either rectangle, you can apply a different material to either side of the face.