DWG files in Sketchup

Hi everyone,

I’m trying to import a PDF professional survey in SketchUp to model a garden from it. I’m using Inkscape to transform my PDF into a DWG (or DWF). Unfortunately when I then import my DWG file into SketchUp, all the letters & numbers that were on the original PDF file disappear!
Any idea how to fix that?

Many thanks,


You could try pdf-importer | Estimator For Sketchup this plugin is very good

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SketchUp doesn’t support AutoCad text. The LayOut importer does.

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Might be a good idea to spend a few moments reading the Help article.

Especially under the part titled, “Understanding what CAD elements SketchUp can import”.



inside inkscape, select your text (or select one text then right click and select same > object type, to automatically select every text objects) then go to path menu and pick object to path.

-note that you might have to double click several time to enter the groups that contain the texts before being able to select them -

It will convert every editable text into vectors that you will be then able to import inside sketchup

This method is similar to illustrator’s decompose function


Hi Paul,

Thanks for your reply. I have tried your method but it still doesn’t really work… I’m sharing two screen shots with you: one is what I have on Inkscape (the survey with all the text and numbers information), the second one is what I have on Sketchup after doing what you suggested (I do get some letters and numbers but they seem to all be imported randomly on the top left side of my document!)

Thanks I’m gonna have a go at it, hopefully this will fix my pb!

export to dxf in R14 instead of R12 version and leave options to default, it should work

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God you really know your stuff, thanks, you basically solved my problem!
Last thing if you don’t mind me asking : the dxf file is now pretty heavy (around 25mb). Is there a way to make it lighter? I’m concern SketchUp starts lagging quite a lot

Edit the object and get rid of the stuff you don’t need. The title block stuff and the borders are all geometry now. That’s adding a lot to the “weight” of the model.

Look at everything you’ve imported and figure out if it helps. If not, erase it.


that or i would simply keep the plan without text and export the PDF to jpg, import it in sketchup and lock it to use as a reference


Thanks Dave, just did it, definitely helps =)

Okay makes sense too, thanks for all your help!

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Make it a practice to avoid putting in anything that doesn’t add benefit to the model. For example, if you have to show the buildings in your garden design, don’t add any more detail to them than you absolutely need. Don’t bother adding door components. Just draw a rectangle for the door and push it in slightly.

Presumably you’ll make a 3D model of the garden. Pay attention to the plant components you add. One heavy, overly-detailed plant component can bring your computer to a screeching halt.


Okay that makes sense. However I sometimes had to create more realistic garden designs for clients and I had to use quite a lot of details & plants (see picture below). Would you advice me to do it differently?

I would advise you to look closely at the components you add (or create) to make sure the detail they include adds to what you need to show the client. The general advice for components you get from the 3D Warehouse is to bring them into a separate file to check them out and determine whether they need to be cleaned up or perhaps rejected in favor of another.

Here’s a quick example. I selected a random BBQ grill like you might build into an outdoor kitchen. It’s a nice looking model.

Look at all the detail inside, though. You could just about reverse engineer this thing and build your own from scratch. Curiously it has a grate on the bottom but not one where you’d put food.

It’s a 49 Mb component. Fine by itself but in the context af an entire garden and patio plan, probably overkill.

I guess the bottom line is look at what you are sticking into your project and make sure it is adding something. Don’t turn your short story into War and Peace.


In regard to the appliances. I’ve found sometimes the logo on the 3d warehouse model is heavier than the whole appliance and even a good part of the whole model.

For dwg import. I’ve imported many topographic maps etc. Text and dimensions are no use in SketchUp. I just import what could be used in creating 3d elements. if you want some of that you might use it in LayOut where 2d information belongs.

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Most definetly overkill!! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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Great tip, Dave!
If I wanted a toilet with 7,000 faces, I could get a $10k computer and a copy of Revit.


Thanks for the tips Dave =)