Hoary old questions

I am not new to 2D drafting, or to computers. I am new to SketchUp and to Forums - finding how to post this was a struggle. First - my thanks to any one who responds. Then - what I am sure is a hoary old question. And, related to this, what’s the best way to find answers to hoary old questions, such as mine, without bothering experts for the nth time? A sort of internal version of Google might answer all my prayers.

Finally getting to the point - how do I print a good (smooth) cylinder? That SketchUp works with inscribed polygons and not with circles is severely testing my ingenuity at both the modelling and printing stages…

Hi @warthog1, welcome to forums.
You can search for your questions/issues by clicking the ‘magnifying glass’ at top right:

For example searching lead me to this topic where you can find your answer:

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I don’t think you need to worry about this too much on this forum.

There are a lot of good examples of the same questions sparking a variety of different discussions. Sure the core answers don’t fluctuate by much, but the surrounding conversations often do.

But more importantly, having the same questions pop up allows new users to have a chance at answering the old classics for themselves (and for their first time). And there is great value to be found in being able to share your solution with others when your just learning the subject for yourself… Something cementing starts to happen when you have to take what you know how to do, and commit it into words for the benefit of others.


Immediately after you select the Arc tool, Circle tool or the Polygon tool, stop.
Look to the Measurements Box at the lower right-hand corner of your screen.

Notice that it now is labeled Sides.
The default number of sides for a Circle in SketchUp is 24.
The default number of sides for an Arc in SketchUp is 12.
The default number of sides for a Polygon is 6.

If you wish to change the number of sides…
Simply type in a different number on the keyboard and press Enter before you draw.

After you have drawn a Circle, Arc or Polygon…
Select the entity and you can change the number of sides and the radius in the Entity Info box.

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Thanks to all - in turn:
Filibis - I had tried this without success. I think that it can be a case of knowing the right word to search for. The link you gave did lead me back to a post that I fell over while looking for something else - the one about exporting the file in a different format. I vaguely remembered it, could not find it again, and began to wonder if I dreamed it. I will see what I can achieve with the clunky hardware at my disposal - this computer will not even load SketchUp 2017.
Jim D - Thanks for the moral support. We all think a little differently, and it can sometimes take three different explanations before something finally makes sense. I always wonder at people who think that saying the same thing louder will do the trick.
Geo - I was on top of the first part of your explanation - but I had not realised that I could change the number of segments retrospectively. That will certainly reduce the amount of erasing and re-drawing that I do.
The particular project that led to my post is that I am trying to model the body of a steam loco that is not available commercially. I had drawn the boiler using 72 segments and, as a model, it simply does not look round. I will try Geo’s tip, increasing the segment count, and see at what point the computer throws in the towel.
There is a related question - how best to make two cross drilled holes in a tube, at arbitrary angles to each other, and not necessarily radial (ie on a chord line). Dead easy in AutoCad, but I struggle in SketchUp.

Without understanding fully what you want to achieve, here is a quick demo of making multiple holes through a cylinder.

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Thanks, Box. My version of SketchUp (16.0.19911) does not seem to have the exact command that you demonstrate. However, I had not tried creating the hole as a separate item, then pushing it through my tube (still very raw at this way of drawing things) and I do seem to able to get this to work.

All the tools in my gif are native tools, they have been combined together from different toolbars into one custom toolbar. I’m guessing the one you don’t think you have is the circle with the red X which is just Delete. It can be found on the ‘Standard’ toolbar. Or right click and select erase or hit delete on your keyboard.

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