Gothic Tracery simplified

Here’s a video to help understand a quick way of constructing some seemingly complex geometry.
Two notes, n on my keyboard is Curvizard Weld (could be any weld) and ctrl b is Paste in Place.
No other plugins or Pro tools used.
In hindsight I didn’t need to make the original path face a component, it was automatic to separate it from the profiles I would draw next. You can see the pause where my mind is thinking why the f just before I explode it.
I also have trouble slowing down enough to really make it clear what I am doing.


Clever workflow!

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Thanks @Cotty I must admit it took me a few minutes to think it through. There are a couple of errors in there that I would have preferred to rerecord but I was in the pub and other things were drawing my attention away.

For people who don´t want to think themselves :wink:

It’s interesting, the power of social media.
I posted this here and on my facebook page at the same time.
This thread has been viewed 166 times, many of those won’t have actually looked at the video.
On the other hand, the video on facebook has been viewed 129,000 times.

It probably includes the view count when it is just posted under their feed and someone is scrolling by?

No, the view count is over half a mill.

Rename Your video on facebook not using the word “gothic” - let´s see what happens :wink:

Aren’t you guys just a breath of fresh air.

The facebook version is actually call simple tracery, so I doubt it’s being shared by Goths.

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I believe it! It’s an awesome gif!

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Wait… you are telling me that Facebook has more members than our forum? I don’t know if I buy that… You fudging numbers, @Box?

You know me @TheOnlyAaron if there is fudging involved I’m in.

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Nice tutorial. Is mirroring with the rotate tool a new function. I’m on 15 and can’t figure out how to do that. I haven’t found any other sources of instruction on mirroring that outlines that technique. Possibly related, my rotate does not inference thregeometry of the arc.


That confuses a lot of people but the reality is it is simple rotation, not mirror.
I Select the curve, then drag the Rotate tool down from the rotation point to set it on the blue axis, then copy rotate to the other side.
Requires no special tools or SU version.

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Thanks! A true mirror would be nice but this is still a good trick.

There’s TIGs mirror plugin for mirroring…

It may not be the way that Box showed, but you can use the scale tool to mirror*; personally I find it much more intuative than the “flip about the xxx axis” from the r-click menu,

(* drag in a direction and type “-1” for the scale factor)

The only down side is that you can’t tap [ctrl] to apply the transformation to a mirrored copy: you need to copy, transform and paste in place: using the rotation tool as box did means that it’s a simple two click process (since [ctrl] will copy) but it only works well because it’s a 2D line on one plane.

One thing to keep in mind is that this is a tutorial, not simply a video of me modelling.
There is quite an art to making a Tut that is both interesting and informative, mainly you need to be able to see everything that is done. Which is why there is an onscreen keyboard, and toolbars.
I could actually model this tracery much faster by using keyboard shortcuts for tools and plugins, but all that would achieve would be a video of me going ‘look at me, don’t you wish you could do this too!’, rather than a video showing how to do something with all the tools and actions in a fluid and efficient way.

Not to mention, there are always other ways of doing something and it isn’t possible to show every version in one video.


Thanks the mirror tool is perfect! The scale works but only if the axis you are flipping on is the same as the bounding box.
I am working on instructing coworkers on SketchUp modelling methodology. Shortcuts will be a priority. It is good to know where the tools as fundamentals, but it is painful to watch my coworkers model without using shortcuts knowing that they could do the job in a fraction of the time.