Design for laser cutting

advice

#1

Hi I’m new to SketchUp. I’m trying to use it to design a microfluidic chamber, but the tutorials seem to only show how to design houses. Does anyone have any suggestions for good tutorials on designs other than houses. Thank you.


#2

Sharing a photo of a microfluidic chamber would help us understand what you want to accomplish.


#3

Just remember to export your design as a 3D DWG file in the end. That will convert arcs and circles to real - non segmented objects.

No need for faces, you only need to keep lines for the final output.

If some of the lines will be used for laser engraving, then separate them on a different layer.


#4

I’m trying to design something similar to this chamber. I have the exact measurements but am trying to translate it into SketchUp Free. It might be just that I’m not able to do it with the free version, I’m not sure.


#5

You start by importing the image and then prepare it to draw over it.


Then you can draw over the image just by using the line, circle and arc tools.


#6

One could model the 2D tool path in…
SketchUp Free, SketchUp Shop, SketchUp Make 2017 or SketchUp Pro 2018

However
None of the free versions can export the file types* necessary to drive CNC equipment.
*DXF or DWG

A subscription to the web based SketchUp Shop is the least expensive.
https://www.sketchup.com/products/sketchup-shop


Then again, to me it seems a bit overkill to use a full-time 3D modeler to draw a simple 2D tool path.
There are free as well as very inexpensive 2D CAD programs more suitable to the task.

DraftSight Free, professional-grade 2D design and drafting solution … with a learning curve.

CadStd Pro Inexpensive, simple but capable 2D CAD without any frills.
http://www.cadstd.com/