Groups vs Components redux


Continuing the discussion from Rotate bounding box:

I’ve been looking for a modeling difference between groups and components when the user has no need for duplication or saving as a component. And @DaveR has just supplied one: To change the bounding box on a group, you have no choice but to rotate the geometry. With Components, all you have to do is change the axis!

Thanks Dave!


you can change the axis on a group too, via right click near or on an open group axis and follow the context menu


You just had to burst my bubble, didn’t you?:man_shrugging:


still think components have the edge in this case, as you don’t have to enter and position the cursor on the axis, just right click the component


Are you looking for reasons to use components instead of groups?


I have eschewed the use of groups under any circumstance, and prefer to use components exclusively. Even if the item appears only once in the model, I save as a component and obviously where an item is duplicated, it is immediately made into a component.


I already exclusively use Components. I just recall a couple of threads where someone asserted that there is no difference between them when the modelers only purpose is isolating geometry. Something didn’t feel right about that. You identified a difference, hitherto unknown to me, so I can now put a reason on my unease!


Since Sketchup is a suite of tools - why not use them when they make sense. Often I use groups because I don’t want the component window to be filled full of components that could simply be groups. Of course if there are multiple copies then I make components.

In scripting I often use a temporary group, perform a transformation (rotate and move it into position) and then explode the group.

So for me groups serve a purpose.


I use groups for things that would be irrelevant to show in the component browser. I even make duplicated objects groups, if I know I wont be modifying them again. E.g. a table leg can be a group in an architectural project because the table as a whole is the component that I might later pick from the component browser, not the leg.

Contrary to popular belief duplicated groups share the same definition, just as components. The difference is that groups are made unique as soon as you modify them while components requires you to actively make them unique from the context menu. You can try yourself to copy a group a few times, select it and look in Entity Info how many there are in the model. As long as you don’t make individual groups unique and end up with duplicated identical definitions there’s no file size benefit in using components either.

Even if I change my mind and realize I want to edit a duplicated group in all instances there is ThomThom’s Selection Toys to convert a group to a component.

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