Day 3: Housebuilder Observations


If anyone has any discussion about these, I would appreciate it. I don’t want to miss anything.

  1. You can select a wall and change its properties. Same for the windows and doors. Couldn’t find a way to do that for the floor and roof (without deleting it and re-doing it).

  2. For the floor, it just does the joists, but doesn’t do the ledger or rim joists (ridge boards) (or any boards that go around the edges). You have to add those yourself as well as do any foundation work (cinder blocks, basement, slab, etc.). You also have to add the subfloor and then surface finish (underlayment, linoleum, carpet, tile, etc.). You can rotate the floor using the Move tool on the little red crosses if you’d rather have the joists run the other way.

  3. There’s no tooltips that I can find for the properties so I had to go outside the plug-in to find out what “Rake Overhang”, “Offset Justification”, " Plate Height", “Header Height” were. Maybe there is a user’s manual or something to go with it that I missed.

  4. If you put the floor down and then put the walls on top of it and then try to add in windows and doors, the little colored locator bar at the bottom is partially hidden by the floor. I had to drop the floor down, add the windows/doors to the walls, and then bring the floor back up. Same thing if you are going to change the window and door properties or delete them. Easier to do a wall, do the doors and windows, then attach that wall to the structure.

  5. Where the wall come together, it just does traditional corners (minus one stud). If you want California corners, or 3-stud, or 4-stud, you have to add those yourself.

  6. I did another floor and raised it up to use as the ceiling joists. (There’s not a ceiling button.)

  7. The gabled roof rafters don’t have collar ties or roof straps and I didn’t see a way to tail cut the rafters, so you have to do those yourself (or just make your own roof).

  8. For the windows, the jack stud runs all the way up to the header and then the sill is nailed to it on each side. That’s one way, but another way I’ve seen it is where the jack stud stops at the sill and the sill is nailed on top of it. I think it gets more support at the edges that way with wood underneath it. Same thing for above the window and door headers. I like cripple studs nailed to the king studs. The plug-in doesn’t do that, so you have to add those.

  9. Overall, it’s a great time saver, but there are a few adjustments I would make if I was going to actually use it to frame. Also, it would help me a lot if everything was color-coded instead of everything being tan. So, all the wall headers would be one color, wall studs another, sole plates another, etc. So, I can tell at a glance the different components.

One thing it does make me want to learn is the source code behind the plug-in so I can adapt it or make something like it incorporating everything I’d like to see.

Whew, I am just going to continue the regular Sketchup tutorials for Day 4.