Help with sketchup model to cnc- truck bumper

I purchased a custom truck bumper plan that was designed in Sketchup. I am trying to get a set of files in dxf or jpeg together to send to my local machine
dxfshop so they can cut the parts out on their cnc, but I’m not having any luck.

I have tried the “simple dxf” extentsion, but when i go through the steps on the extension, and save the file as a dxf, the file is blank in my dxf viewer and my cnc guy can’t see anything either.

I also purchased the “get fabber” extension. When I use this, it saves to an svg file but is really pretty useless.

Please help! I’m willing to upload the model if that would help. I’m a complete novice at this software.

The components/groups you export for the operations must contain geometry and all of those components/groups must be nested inside a component/group outer container.

It would be my first guess you haven’t made the outer container but uploading the file would be useful too.

Your profile says you are using SketchUp 2020 Pro. Have you tried the native dxf exporter?

I have tried the native export and it just makes a dxf of the entire model, so not helpful for my cnc person.

ill try the suggestion above. I’m not wanting to upload the model just yet as It’s not my work and I don’t want it to get stolen from the creator.

You could copy/paste just that one component into a blank model and try the native dxf exporter on that

Are you trying to create flat patterns something like this?

Those little pieces floating above are the parts that going in at the step-downs indicated by the arrows.

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yes that is exactly what I’m looking for! How do I do that!?

You aren’t going to get that with a simple dxf export from SketchUp so it’s kind of no wonder you weren’t getting what you wanted. I unfolded it manually using the Rotate tool. To avoid distorting it many of the surfaces were copied during rotation and the originals deleted. In this case I started by exploding a copy of the component and rotating all of the geometry so the face with the rectangular hole in it is vertical and parallel to the green axis. Then I rotated the rest to make it flat. It’s probably not the best layout. but it was just for the example.

You could look at an extension like Unwrap and Flatten Faces. It might do what you want but it might make it worse than mine.

I assume the whole thing will be made of welded flat plates. If that’s the case then the faces don’t need to be in contact with each other which could simplify things.

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correct, I don’t need all the pieces to still be touching once they are laid out flat, I really just need basically a blueprint to send to my cnc person.

I really haven’t had much luck at all. I’ve tried exploding- select group> right click> explode, but nothing happens… I’ve also used the unwrap and flatten, then move them away from the model, but all I can manage to do it make a giant mess of unorganized pieces.

@DaveR i would totally paypal you some $$ to just create this for me

What are you expecting to have happen? All exploding does it remove the group or component container. It doesn’t spread the faces out.

I might be able to get back at in in the next day or two. How much are you thinking? Send that info via a PM by clicking on my name and then “Message”

I was expecting explode to move all of the pieces away from each other, like in an exploded view diagram…

PM sent.

Yeah. That’s not what Explode does.

Looks like you managed to send me a message.

Hello friend, I would like to do something like that, do you have a plugin for sale that allows me to do that deployment? And then cut in cnc.

Dave did it by hand, just rotating one piece at a time.

you can also consider This extension, it’ll make it, sometimes, if the shape is not too complex, and you might need to redo it several times - every time you try it, there is a possibility of gettin a different result (on a complex shape)

Then you have outside softwares like pepakura (PC) or unfolder (mac) but they ain’t free.

I studied that extension’s code to learn about how to transform an arbitrarily oriented face onto the ground plane for an extension I wrote for a client.

It works by looking for edges that join two faces and when it finds such, rotating one face around that edge so that it is coplanar with the first. Then it works from the rotated face to seek another edge about which to unfold. The algorithm is indeed random, as the choice of edge to unfold at each step is arbitrary. It tries to find an unwrapping that fits as many faces as possible onto the same plane, but gives up after a configurable number of tries, with no guarantee that it found a perfect solution. So, yes, trying again can produce a different unwrapping each time.

The statements above are consistent with the extension author’s documentation, not something new that I discovered.

I did it that way because I didn’t get a satisfactory result fromUnwrap and Flatten or a couple of other extensions I have that can do that sort of thing. Doing it manually with the Rotate tool was trivial.

I do pretty much the same when building paper models, if I have to choose between 5 min of trial and error or 5 min or manual rotation, I’ll probably do the rotation.

one case where I’ll use the extension is almost flat - but not quite so - stuff.

like on these faces, I’ll simply duplicate them appart, enable hidden geometry, and just right click. because when taken separately, they only have one right answer. and in that case it’s quicker than manual rotation. AND the result comes as a group, easy to replace in contact of the other pieces :slight_smile:

(it’s all about lazyness really :wink: )

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