How to Create Groups and Components?

I am trying to learn the CORRECT way to develop models on SU. Up till now I hadn’t used the powerful Groups and Components feature, as I found the procedures cumbersome and confusing. Now I am forcing myself to delve into the proper procedures to work with these tools, and have discovered that the 2017 Make version that I have been using seems to be lacking some of the features in the Windows Drop down. One of the tutorials that I’ve been studying shows that there are features in the windows drop down that are missing on my program. Most notably are the features related to the Groups and Components . Are these “plugins” or extensions that the tutorial displays, or is there a way to fix these missing elements?

The SketchUp Make 2017 version of the program has full support for Groups and Components. In addition to dynamic menu entries on the right-click context menu, the Edit menu has relevant functions listed on it.

The right-click context menu only shows operations that are relevant to what is selected or what is being clicked. For example, draw some raw geometry (say a circle), switch to the Select tool (e.g., by pressing Spacebar), and then select the circle’s face and edges by double-clicking somewhere on the face. Now right-click on the face, and there should be functions listed for Make Group and Make Component. Similarly, the Edit menu at that point should show Make Group and Make Component functions which are active (not grayed out).

PS. I hope you do not object to the fact that I edited the topic title to be more than just your name. I added a brief summary of what I think is the subject of your query.


can you specify what you see when you rightclick on an entity? Or share a screenshot?

Howdy, Mike W. I’ll beg your indulgence for my unfamiliarity with some of the SU jargon, I’m not sure exactly what an ENTITY is. As TD explained a geometry must be selected in order to display the context menu…it this an entity?
Another question is: how do I share a screenshot? The entity clicked to display the context menu on my screen is the same as what you show in your example. I think that my issue has been solved, and I thank you for your patience.

I always advice to keep an eye on the ‘entity’ panel. On Mac we still got floating panels, on Windows, you got to have it visible in a tray, or drag it out to be floating. Anything you select with the arrow tool shows what you got and some extra information.
An ‘Edge’ has a length, a face has a square footage, solid groups have a volume etc.
The icons below represent visibilty and different shadow settings of the entity. There is info what Layer is assigned. Lot’s of info.

The outliner shows the ‘object’ tree (Groups and Components are entities that are now called ‘objects’)

1 Like

An “entity” is basically any “thing” which is part of a SketchUp model, seen in the model-space viewport window and selectable with the Select tool. Examples of entities are edges, faces, guide (construction) points and lines, groups, components, section planes, and text labels.

1 Like

The project that I am working involves designing and building prototypes of miniature houses. After several trial-and-errors, I decided that I’d ask for procedural help in getting these models successfully accomplished. This picture shows a wall with simulated ship-lap siding cut into the wood to give a realistic “texture”.

The problem that I can’t seem to get around is developing the window and then slipping it into the fluted wall surface. I’ve gotten the ship-lap wall drawn easily, made it a Group, then drawing the window, making that a Component because I wanted to “cut Hole” when I inserted it into the single-layered wall. I was going to give the wall it’s 1/2" thickness after I had the window set in place

. The result is that I don’t know how to go about accomplishing what seems like should be a simple procedure.

There are all sorts of tools and extensions that will cut a hole in a wall for you to stick a window in, but all they do is automate the process.
Understanding the fundamentals will take you far further than using any shortcuts.
Here I have shown the very basics of how to use the intersect faces tool to cut a hole in one group to fit the other.

Window in wall


Thank you for the great information!! This begs for an additional question. The tool bar shown in the instructional video employs a tool that I’ve not seen before. The Circled “X” does not occur in the toolbar that I have available in my 2017 Make version (to my knowledge) It was used as an integral tool in the procedural instruction, and I’d like to learn how to 1) get this tool, or 2) find a tool that I have to accomplish the same purpose.

I believe you are referring to the Eraser tool. It is a part of the “standard” tool bar. To enable go to the view menu and select toolbars. It can be enabled from there.

1 Like

You can also just hit delete on your keyboard.

1 Like

I really appreciate all the help that everyone has lent to my using Groups and Components.
But now another question arises, and that is once I have created a series of components, eg. windows, doors and corner treatments,
for use in one model, how do I go about storing these components for use in a separate model. The houses that I’m modeling will be in “pieces” eg. each wall is a separate model, and the windows will be used in each of the walls. Again thanks for your help and I’m learning a lot from ya’ll!

You create a local collection to keep them in. I was going to type how but then just used the search function and found a good explanation from Dave.

1 Like