Everything simple is painfull... WHY?


example :

  • window\preference : construction feet and inch
    then decided to change :
  • window\Model info\unit to decimal, mm, 0.0m

then draw a new rectangle, then decided to change the dimensions

(of course I had 30 years old DOS program that let me type the NEW dimensions…).

Since nothing is simple, easy and intuitive in SU, I decided to use “SCALE” command (because I could not find any other solution) and try to stretch the rectangle to 39*185mm

first, there is no field showing the x and y dimensions when trying to do that
second, the only way I could found to see what I was doing, was to add dimensions text
third, when scaling (by stretching) I could reach the 39mm but the closest I came to 185 was 185.1
fourth if I try to zoom in to maybe gain more precision, I loose the dimension text because it goes out of the screen visual area, and anyway I do not get the 185.0mm…


  1. why can’t I enter the PRECISE dimensions of the rectangle I want? (Don’t tell me because it would be too easy, would not challenge my patience and I would not loose my precious time trying to figure that out or because it is a more advance soft that we had in DOS…)

  2. why can’t I stretch it to the EXACT 185mmm that I want?

  3. if the rectangle was a representation of a metal extrusion having a perimeter wall of 3.2mm, when I scale the outside the inside wall would scale to… WRONG… I just want to “stretch” one side then move the inside wall… but the way it work, the other side would change dimension having me loose MORE TIME trying to fix it!!!

any “brilliant” solution that could help me like SU?

P.S. Since Google had that software that I am being told it is so easy to draw with it… I wonder where all that hype is coming from!

  1. To make a rectangle with precise dimensions, type in for example 3,3. Separate your dimensions with a comma.

  2. 3 To resize the rectangle precisely, you can use the tape measure tool to measure the new length, the move the edge to the guide.
    SketchUp Training Series: Tape Measure tool
    This training series is what taught me SketchUp. The videos teach how to use all of the main tools in SketchUp. If you are interested in learning, then I highly recommend watching the entire series.

  3. You can use the move tool or the push/pull tool, then type in the amount you want to move it.

P.S. I think it’s easy to draw with, but that wasn’t always the case. At one time, I was a total beginner and had a lot of difficulty with it. Over time, with help from the training videos, I learned how to use it. I have faith you can get over SketchUp’s learning curve to the ease-of-use that’s on the other side…


Aren’t you using the VCB (value control box) as you draw for entering in the dimensions. SU will allow for any combination of input units… even directly after the initial rectangle was drawn.

for example:

click somewhere in model space with the rectangle tool to set the first point, and then randomly click anywhere else you’d like to set the second point.

now start keying in dimensions into the vcb:


10cm, 10"
1’, 300mm
20cm, 10 1/16"
5.5", 1.25’

enter in these sets of input values, or more,… and that rectangle will keep resizing itself until you stop entering in dimensions.

a number without any unit assigned to it will simply follow whatever units you have set in place within the model info panel.

Draw a line of any length.

and then while it’s still selected go into the entity info panel, and enter in some other length to change it to that new value.

In the same entity info panel you can also adjust radius values for arcs and circles, or the segment counts which control how many lines are used to constitute them.


to Jim D

if the VCB is the field at the bottom right of SU Make 2017, I just cannot click into it. It is read only!

for the line it does work :o)


Okay, I don’t have a copy of SU Make installed on my machine. . . I only have a pro license… so I can’t immediately test out how the vcb works within the Make version.

I have a really hard time believing that they would have crippled that feature for the Make users.

With missing functionality like this I question to quality of the installation you have.



it does work with the measuring tape. THANK YoU

But 14 clicks and a non intuitive interface is not making things easier and faster. It is now worst than learning a DOS software!


You’re welcome. I’m glad you got it working. 14 clicks sounds like a lot… I think you might be doing it wrong. It sounds like you’re having a lot of difficulty learning SketchUp. Trust me, watch the training videos and you will be an expert in no time.

I know it can seem like a drag typing in dimensions, but it’s a lot easier to learn than AutoCAD’s command line. For example, to create a line in SketchUp, you click-release-drag, type in the dimensions, then press enter. In AutoCAD, you type in the starting coordinates, followed by < and the angle, then type in the length of the line. It’s much harder because it requires a lot of math and typing, yet yields basically the same result as SketchUp.


Once drawn, SketchUp just sees it as a collection of faces and edges. You can draw it the right size the first time by typing the size e.g. 50,100 for a rectangle 50mm x 100mm assuming you’re unit is mm. Don’t click the VCB, just type!
Don’t expect every program to work exactly the same way. Windows 10 doesn’t work exactly the same way as DOS. Do you still use the command line all the time instead of the mouse in windows 10?

You can. After scaling, type a number and it scales up that many times eg. 2 scales it twice its size. If you type a unit, it scales it to exactly that size. Use scale tool, then type 185mm and it will be scaled to exactly that size.

You should be able to scale them independently if you want.

Sometimes it is easier and faster just to delete an object and draw it again the right size, depending on how complicated it is.



not only when I just finish to draw a rectangle i can’t change the dimensions even if i see it but if I select another rectangle previously drawn, in Measurements (that you call VCB) it shows NOTHING. The only information that I could have is in Entity Info and it is the Area… that is it !


Once drawn, the rectangle is just a face and four edges. It is not a parametric rectangle that SketchUp ‘knows’ is a rectangle. Some objects are like this in SketchUp, but not many. You can edit a line’s length unless it is attached at both ends. You can edit the segments in a circle and its radius and some others. Note that circles are really just polygons in SketchUp.


Invest more energy in learning and less in ranting.

You certainly can.
Aidan Chopra explains the power of the Measurements box in this video tutorial.

You can enter precise dimensions while using the Scale tool.

The current online ‘documentation’ barely mentions this function.
And the SketchUp Training Series video tutorial fails to mention it at all.

See this excerpt from the SU7 User’s Guide
Scale Tool SU7 User Guide.pdf (73.3 KB)

Use the Move tool to modify geometry precisely.
See this compendium of Tweaking Tool Tips at the SketchUp Sage site…


No one seems to have mentioned this. Don’t click in the VCB before typing in it. When the VCB is available for you to enter numbers in, just let go of the mouse and type.


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