Cutting holes through stacked panels


I’m a new user (using SketchUp Make) and couldn’t figure this out. Sorry if it’s been asked, but I searched all day without finding an answer (maybe my terminology isn’t correct).

I have three 1-in thick panels that are stacked directly next to each other. Each panel is a separate component. I would like to drill a 2 1/2-in hole and screw the panels together.

I tried editing the first panel and cutting a 2 1/2-in hole by drawing a circle and using push/pull, but after I move the panels apart I can see there are no holes in the other two panels (and the hole in the first panel extends past the depth of the panel).

I also will need to repeat these every 2-in along the length of the panels. I’ve seen some neat tutorials on cutting a hole in a 2D panel first, then using push/pull to give it depth, but I think that would require me undoing a lot of work I’ve already done.

Lastly, what is the convention used to indicate where screws or bolts should be positioned? I’m new to wood working, and haven’t seen many SketchUp models that show fasteners. I’d like to mark things like “#10 3-in deck screw”.

Thanks in advance!

You need to understand that when you edit a component you are only impacting the geometry within that component. With native tools you could “drill” the hole through the first component. Then you can open the next component to edit mode, use the hole in the previous one as a reference for drawing the next circle and push that through. Then open the third one and repeat the process.

If the components can at least start out at the same size, you could begin with a flat face, layout the holes and extrude it to thickness. Make that a component and then copy it. Assuming the 2nd and third need have different overall dimensions you can make the copies unite and modeify their dimensions to suit.

You could also draw a cylinder as a “drill”, cut it to the clipboard and then open each component and paste the geometry in place. Then run Intersect Faces and finally delete everything that isn’t the panel and the hole.

If you have more than a few of these and you place any value on your hobby time, you could invest in Bool Tools 2 and use its Trim tool to drill the holes in very short order with a cylinder component.

Another option would be to use the Drill tool in the Wudworx tool set. It will drill an array of holes in short order and can even countersink or counterbore them if needed.

You might also consider how much value there really is in modeling the holes. Sometimes there is and sometimes there isn’t. It just depends on how you are using the model. For whom are you putting these holes in?

You can place labels into the model. Maybe a single label that says something like “Coated deck screw, 3 in. long, 12 places”

why not just put an X to mark the spot and label it drill thru (X) places with an arrow to indicate the locations?

Thanks DaveR, that was very helpful! I think you and RLGL are right to consider the value of modeling the holes. I hadn’t given it much thought, but realized it’s overly detailed for my purposes. Glad to learn the technique for future reference though.

1 Like

Yes, it’s very easy to get carried away with the joy of modeling and include details that are beyond what’s necessary. Detailed modeling of the threads on fasteners and tapped holes is a good example. In most cases the bolts or screws will be purchased, not made, and the holes will be drilled and tapped. But you can easily add thousands of edges and faces to a model by including all the details!

1 Like