Getting started

I am a very very novice user who is just trying to get started. As my first task I wish to draw a side view diagram of a 2x4x80 inch metal box beam, locate 4-5/8 in dia holes in each end and transmit this diagram to another farmer so that he can determine if his plow assembly will attach to my plow.
I can start sketchup and draw a horizontal line but can’t seem to set the scale to inches. Where and how do you specify how long the line is? Given that the box beam is 80 inches long and the hole layout is 2x4 inches located 1&1/4 inches from each end it would be nice if I could show the detail of each end with a break in the middle of the beam.
I somehow thought this would be more intuitive, usually I can poke around a program and figure it out pretty quick but I’m obviously not that cleaver
Is there some place I can go to get some instruction and become orientated?
Thanks in advance.

Look at the videos in this playlist to get started:

The program really is simple and fairly intuitive. Just invest a bit of time and patience and I’m confident that you can model the example you described in short order. You can always come back to this forum with any questions about using the tools or various techniques to construct your models also.

Good luck.

1 Like

Don’t miss the Video Tutorials Playlists … especially the Toolbar Series

Thanks to you both. Will do.

After re-reading your original post, I will try to specifically address your expressed concerns here:

  1. Start by selecting the template that is most appropriate. Go to Window → Preferences → then choose the desired template. Once your preference has been saved in a skp file, SketchUp will always open with the same template unless you change it later. In the case you mentioned, you should probably choose either the Architectural Design Feet & Inches or the Construction Documentation Feet & Inches Template (or you may prefer the Simple Template Feet & Inches).

  2. Find the View toolbar and select either the Iso, Top or Front view to start. You can orbit to any view you want after your initial view is established. For this example start with the Iso view and draw a rectangle on the Red-Green axis.

  3. If you have selected one of the feet inch templates, type 24,80 and hit return. You do not need to indicate inches in this case. This produces a 2’ x 80" rectangle. Now use the push-pull tool to extrude the rectangle up in the blue axis direction. Type 48. Hit Return. Now you have produced the rectangular solid as described.

  4. Place the hole where you want it. Use the tape measure tool to locate a guide line 1.25 inch from the edge and another to locate the circumference of the desired circle (This guideline should be the exact distance from the previous guide to equal the diameter of the circle). Place a final guide at exactly half the distance and model a circle with the center positioned such that the radius ends exactly on either of the guide lines. If the circle needs to be moved to be centered, make it a group and position as needed. Alternatively, you could create a square having the same side length as the circle diameter and position the square as desired and then inscribe the circle within the square. Using this approach, you should delete the square after the circle is placed in its ultimate location.

If you want to establish a length of line, just start the line and then type the length. You don’t need to try to type the information in any specific location. It will register automatically in the value control box (VCB).

Hopefully you find this helpful.

Here’s a quick version to get you moving, you didn’t say if it was 1.1/4 hole center or edge but you get the idea. Keep an eye on the measurement box at the bottom. Start an action, type what you want and hit enter. Don’t try to click in the box to type.