How to get a sufficiently detailed image into the Component Options box?


Continuing the discussion from Problems using a custom thumbnail in a DC component options box:

Restatement of my problem:

I’m building a flexible component that, through component options, will size itself exactly to commonly available (in the US and other countries still using Imperial measurements) angled metallic stock. Length is up to the user and will be controllable either in Component Options or through the Scale tool.

I’ve successfully built the basic component. It responds well and quickly to component options. Now, I’m trying to include a schematic picture in the Component Options box - so that users will understand the 3 dimensions that can be set (Height, Width and Stock Thickness). The available standard sizes will be selectable through a single, long drop down list of standard sizes.

These are the travails of trying to get that schematic cross section into the Component Options box.

My first try, embedding the “share this” link from the picture as it exists in Google Drive, was a failure - with the details embedded in the topic that spawned this topic

Before I go on, I’ll try to illustrate what I’m trying to do in pictures! I want a smaller version of:

to appear somewhere in here:

I did manage to find a way to embed the actual picture from Google without the annoying garbage of Google’s picture viewer. Here’s the result - and the Component Attributes that generated it:

As you can see, the necessary details of the image aren’t discernible in the thumbnail.

My next idea was to embed html in the description field like this (shown with result):

So far, so good. But when I replace my placeholder text with the actual url as an <img ,> tag, nothing happens!

Huh? I thought you could embed html in the description field!!! So I looked at the applicable SketchUp Help Page. Rats! My recollection that you can include html in the description was inaccurate. You can include a very limited subset of html - and that subset doesn’t include anything that would result in the image I want appearing, at useable size, in my Component Options box!

At this point, I think I’m going to fall back on creating a page on my website with instructions on use of my component, and in the Description, included some bold wording saying “Hey! Click here for instructions! You will probably need them!” – Of course, the actual implementation will have kindler, gentler wording.

But I’m open to any ideas any of you might have! Please chime in!

Related problem - if you want to address this, please “Reply as linked Topic”:

My desire for including a detailed, readable schematic stems from the LONG list of available standard sizes for the cross section. The use of a “select one from the following options” drop down is a nice feature, but when the list gets long, it becomes cumbersome. I see no easy way to avoid that - and I think the detailed picture would help the user. That’s NOT the related problem - but feel free to address my reasoning - again as a linked Topic.

The related problem is: How can I systematically populate the option list in the drop down? I’ve got 9 options in there for testing, but there are at least 60 that seem to be common. And if I don’t do the data entry exactly right, they come out in a confusing order - at least without a LOT of editing.

Is there a way to load the options by copying/pasting from a spreadsheet? Or some other way?

Thanks in advance!


Populating components attribute options

Hi @sjdorst,

This help article list all html tags supported and <img> tags are not supported in summaries and descriptions and are therefore ignored.

you also had a typo in your screenshot… <iimg src="... :wink:

This being a relatively simple item with only 3 parameters, it could be easily described with words.

Since <a href=""></a> are supported, you could very well make a small help file/website hosted on your Google Drive or elsewhere and host the extra info there with supporting screenshot and all.


Hi @denisroy,

Thanks for catching that typo. Even knowing it was fruitless, I made the change in the actual component so I could replace the snapshot in my original post with one that reflected the correction <img src... instead of <iimg src ...

Buried in my original post was a link to the same help page.

Your suggestion is a good one, and is the one I’m likely to use. But before I do that bit of work, I’ll wait a little longer to see if anybody comes up with an oddball idea that works within the Component Options box!

Yeah, that’s the plan, procrastination excused by hope! :wink:


When editing your post, you replaced the wrong screenshot… :wink:


Aargh!! It’s tough to replace an image url when there are a LOT of images very close together in the post.

I thank you for pointing that out. And at this point, I’m not going to bother trying to fix it! I think others reading this post will get the idea! <fingers crossed>


More important would be how the use of your component appears on Component reports.
We would expect that users will want all uses of a particular size angle stock, to be listed on one line, so that the qty column correctly reflects the number used.

So I suggest testing a model, placing multiple instances into the model. Setting some the same size, others different, … then running a report and see if they all appear on the same report line.

It may be that the real answer is to have each angle size as it’s own component file, and the only options would be length and coating (galvanize, anodize, zinc-cromate, etc.)

ADD: Personally, if I want 1/2x1/2 square angle stock, I’ll just want to pick it that way in the Component Manager, from a collection sub-folder. (Going through a drop-down list of 60+ choices gets real old, real quick.)



Your suggestions are good ones, but have been overtaken by events! I forked this topic in order to have a new topic about Populating components attribute options, wherein you can see that I’ve abandoned that approach because I don’t want to manually populate the option list - and can’t find a quick way to do it semi-automatically.

Additionally, I’ve also temporarily put aside my idea of publishing the angle stock (and other metal stock components) because worrying about the details was taking far too much time away from my underlying project! I AM going to use this component as a sub-component in my underlying project, but for that purpose, I can include simple A, B, and C inputs, and just restrict myself to stock sizes, without the added complexity of restricting the component itself to stock sizes.

So for the time being, and probably a long time, detail work on THIS component is on the back burner, not off, but simmering at the lowest possible setting.


What I said still holds true, even for your use alone. What happens when you come to the point when you need to generate a report to use as a bill of materials for this project ?

All I’m saying is do a quick test report now, and see if the different size angles collate out correctly on the report.


In this case, what I’m trying to model is a product composed of steel angle stock, steel tubes, and a few other misc assemblies. But the end result will be a single unit, purchased from a single manufacturer, and ordered from a restricted option of sizes (thus my wanting to restrict the options for the dimensions of the individual components). If it ultimately gets used by anyone other than myself, then the only thing that should report in a BIM is "1 Each "

Thus, for my underlying project, BIM reporting of the sub-components needs to be either suppressed, hidden, or non-existent from the POV of the end user!