Grooved Board proceedure


I have been able to extrude a semi-circular groove in a board-like object using the “Follow-Me” tool (see attached image). However, the method I used required editing of the image to correct unintended features. Is there a simple method to create the groove without any unintended cuts, or features?


You show only the result after editing, so I must guess. But it is highly likely that you hit the well-bemoaned small geometry threshold of SketchUp. Operations such as follow-me can generate very small geometry, particularly where they turn corners. SketchUp has a tolerance of 0.001 inch below which it starts to merge vertices and delete their associated faces, which causes cuts or gaps.

The standard workaround is to scale the model up by some factor (experimentation may be needed, since the necessary factor depends on the size of the details in each case), perform the follow-me, and then scale the results back to the original size. Small details will be retained during scaling; the issue is just that SketchUp will not generate them on its own.


Actually, the problem is to get the proper planar orientation I had to place the semi-circle on an external edge face of the board perpendicular to the groove-plane, select the groove-plane and the use the Follow-Me tool to create the groove. This had the unfortunate consequence of cutting a hole in the side of the board. I needed to erase that side of the board and replace with the Rectangle tool. The problem is I don’t know of away to drop the semi-circle at the proper orientation down through the plane of the board so the Follow-Me tool starts on the plane of the board, not on the outside edge.


How about:



@Shep beat me to it. You just have to not be intimidated by the warning about the path - most of the time the issue it warns about is not a problem. In those cases where it does cause a problem, you have to try something else, such as the following:

Another technique is to cut a notch in the follow-me path and draw the profile there. Do the follow-me and then fill in the gap by drawing lines between the ends of the follow-me groove.


This method is a bit easier:



Dang! The guys are beating me to posts left and right this morning!


Perhaps, but now it’s off to work so have fun.



Personally, I believe all you guys have been very helpful and informative. I never though of displacing the semi-circle off the edge. I was toying with the idea of splitting the board in half to open-up a plane and then merge the halves back together, but the push/pull technique is superior.

Thanks again for all your timely responses.


When a part has symmetry, it is often better to draw half, move and flip a copy, and merge the pieces into a whole. Little would be gained in your example, but in other situations, e.g. a board with complex joinery on the ends, the savings can be huge.


It’s important to understand the relationship between the profile and the path.
The path tells it what direction while the profile tells it the shape as well as the starting position.
As you see here, the profile is nowhere near the path, but their relative positions determine the finished geometry. It’s mportant to keep the profile perpendicular to the path.


I moved 8 posts to a new topic: Use Follow-me tool on non planar surfaces

Use Follow-me tool on non planar surfaces

Hi Guilly,
Please invite me to join this SketchUp group.!aboutgroup/sketchup


Hey, @jabonin, the link you provided is for the old, discontinued Google forum, which was replaced by this forum hosted by Trimble, of which, of course, you are already a member.