I have some doubt about plugins

We know plugins make su interesting.Sometimes we have to use plugins to make some complex modles,why not add some useful and frequently-used plugins to the install-pack like sandbox tools.With respect,I hardly think the default plugins is enough at present.Add some specific useful functions to make a specific version like Sketchup Architecture. It coule be great!

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Useful and frequently used by one user is often quite different from another user. Satisfying every user would create a huge program along with a huge price tag I would guess. Which in my opinion is why this ‘pick n choose’ plugin system works so well.


Besides it gives a plugin author like myself something to do. :slight_smile:

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I’d be keen to hear which plugins you are using today that you think should be integrated into the core SketchUp modeling application? What have you found to be indispensable in your daily work?

I’m particularly interested to hear what you think would help finish out a set of tools for a specific version like “SketchUp Architecture.”



An extension that I use very frequently, and I suspect is one of the more universally-useful ones, is Solid Inspector2 by @thomthom .

Architects love Skalp and/or Condoc tools…

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I offen have trouble when I try to draw a curve(not noly an arc). I really need tool like ”Bézier curve“,and…seems that sketchup don’t have a Welding tool to connect two or more lines. Actually,other tools for line is also very important to creat an modle. I think add this tools to sketchup is worth looking forward to.

Often, it’s seemingly insignificant things that either subtly enhance or conspicuously diminish value.

I believe a good many Pro users are puzzled and frustrated by having to scrounge for plugins merely to have tools generally considered elemental, yet absent from SU Pro.

A native Query tool
A native Invert Selection command
A native global Select All Instances command
A native Make Faces command
A native Weld command
A native Dimension Angle tool
A native means to toggle Endpoints via hot key
A native Guide Point tool I.e., Place one point or mark all vertices in selection.
A native Bezier Spline tool
A native uniform-segment Ellipse tool
A native Make Group and Make Component command that acts upon single entities
A native command to Resize Window and Resize Viewport
A native command to List / Print Shortcuts

And lastly…
Painfully absent from SU Pro is a clear, concise, comprehensive and well-organized PDF User’s Guide.
One that by every measure reflects the meaning of ‘Pro’, thereby exhibiting respect for professional SU Users’ time and investment.


xlines, skalp, drop vertices, purge, purge, purge

I’d take that further and say Weld is so essential I’ve often wondered it doesn’t ship native with Make. I’m a Pro user, so it wouldn’t necessarily affect me, I’m just saying that it’s so “elemental” (as @Geo calls it) as to seem a no-brainer function to have as a part of the basic commands.

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It is in the Component Browser contextual menu. It would be nice if it appeared in the right-click menu for components in the model viewport too.

It is in LayOut. It seems that the developers are thinking that users will do all their dimensions there.

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The key feature being, global.
Select Instances in the Components Browser context menu is limited to current context.

Selecting anything outside the active drawing context goes completely against the logic behind what a drawing context is. I use TT’s selection toys for this all the time but I absolutely don’t think it should be a native feature as it would be extremely confusing to any new user who still haven’t understood what a drawing context is.

In my opinion the same goes for most suggestions in this thread. I think what makes SketchUp great is how easily it is to understand. There is a limited number of tools, commands and concepts that all fit nicely together. On top of that you can install plugins that adds new concepts that can even contradict the original logic of the software, but only when you are ready to do so. I think it would be very unwise to try to add popular plugins into SketchUp (with a few exceptions such as weld curve which is merely the opposite of the native explode curve function). If users want everything to be thrown at them at once they can just use Blender.


I use a similar, but simpler one, all the time.
Instances by Rick Wilson
With that, a Select All Instances command appears in the Component context menu.

That you and me, experienced Pro users, must resort to plugins to fill a gap in elemental functionality, illustrates my point and begs the question…
Why shouldn’t SU Pro have native Select All Instances-Global and Select All Instances-In Context commands?

If we’re going to postulate perpetual ignorance, then neither will work.
It’s certainly no more confusing than when a user, unfamiliar with the concept of context, goes to the Components Browser context menu and finds Select Instances grayed out.

To my last point, where would users turn to learn about such things…
…the Knowledge Center, as it’s labeled in the GUI, the same labeled elsewhere as Knowledge Base and still elsewhere labeled SketchUp Help Center?

The Knowledge Center/Knowledge Base/SketchUp Help Center contains an article titled:
Introducing Drawing Basics and Conceptshttps://help.sketchup.com/en/article/3000083

The article never mentions the concept of modeling context.
And there is no Glossary in the Knowledge Center/Knowledge Base/SketchUp Help Center trilogy.

A well-conceived manual introduces Concepts right up front and has a Glossary towards the end, as does the SU7 PDF User’s Guide. Therein, the Concepts section explains Context on pg. 49 and the Glossary entry, Context, further explains the concept on pg. 882.

ICBW, but I feel certain that outright omission and prolific use of irrelevant metaphor* the likes of which one finds in this ’manual’ cannot replace clear description of fundamental concepts and a Glossary.

*melting sticks of butter or chocolate bars
*housing blocks in a post-industrial dystopia
*perfectly worn-in blue jeans
*paint-splattered overalls
*a hot pink geometric gown
*Junya Wantanabe’s Spring 2015 couture collection


I can’t agree. When a new user tries to use Select Instances from the Component browser context menu and it is disabled they are likely to realize there are no instances that they could have selected with Select Tool either. The result is the same as when there are no instances in the model. It is consistent and makes sense.

Selecting entities outside the active drawing context was never intended. That is the basics of how drawing contexts work. The parent drawing context is either grayed out or completely hidden and no tool will interact with it. Children drawing contexts can’t be interacted with either, because all tools interact with the containing group/component as a whole. The only reason why e.g. Thomthom’s Selection Toys can select anything outside of the active context is because the developers who created the Ruby API never thought of preventing plugins from making these selections. It is very useful but still a hack that doesn’t at all fit into the native user experience. Try using move tool on a selection spread through several drawing contexts with axes that don’t align and you’ll see how oddly it behaves.

I’d strongly agree whatever you have mentioned - the plugins as well as on the PDF documentation.

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I would like Weld added - in addition to the ability to set my desired gradient color to the sky background. Something more dramatic than a white horizon color would be nice.

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I can sympathise with the OP about an ability to install a ‘plugin pack’, or even ‘batch install’ plugins. Would certainly help beginners get up and running.

While it may be the case that SU plugin choice should have a free and easy feel, I think there is such a thing as a toolset for different disciplines within sketchup: architecture, engineering, woodworking, landscaping, etc.

Would be nice to have some guidance particularly for beginners on this.

…Which if developed by SketchUp would increase the baseline cost. Then begs the argument for a built-in render engine, etc, etc…

Imo, the attraction of SU is the simplicity and low cost compared to its counterparts.

All the tools are there and easy enough to find with many available with a donation as opposed to a hefty price tag. And most applications can be achieved with the default toolset.

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Currently, the trend is that Resellers provide custom packages for different kind of clients, eg SketchUp Pro with a render plugin SketchUp Pro with Dibac, or some resellers also provide (tested) hardware configurations for SketchUp. As a client, one just wants things to get done, not be bothered or have to pick special kind of set-ups etc. by themselves. Give them a choice: are you a landscape architect?- take this etc.