Importing cad file and it disappears as I zoom in

When I bring in a cad file - site plan, it is visible until I zoom in to start drawing over and then it disappears in sections the closer I get. I zoom out an I can see it again. Ho can I get it to import on the 2d flat plane of SketchUp?

Hello, this is camera clipping, see this help page : Clipping and missing faces | SketchUp Help
especially these points :

  • This can also happen if your model is very far away from the origin point (the point where the red, green, and blue axes intersect). In that case, you can move your model closer to the origin point following these steps:

  • Select all of the geometry in your model by typing Control+A or Command+A , or by clicking and dragging the Select tool across your geometry.

  • Change to the Move tool by going to Tools > Move .

  • Grab a corner point of the selected geometry that is on the ground plane and start to move the selected geometry.

  • Type [0,0,0] (including the square brackets) in the Measurement toolbar (which is in the lower-right corner of the SketchUp window). This causes the selected point to be moved to the origin point.

  • Most frequently, clipping occurs after a DWG import and is caused by a combination of the above points. If you’re moving your geometry to the origin or checking for scale, you’ll want to ensure that you can see all the geometry in the model. These three steps will help you do that:

  • Turn on all your layers in the Window > Layers menu.

  • Unhide geometry using the Edit > Unhide all command.

  • View all hidden geometry by clicking on View > Hidden Geometry .

After making all your geometry visible, go to Camera > Zoom extents to see the full extents of your model. If you find that you have geometry located long distances from the origin, removing that geometry will help resolve this problem.

Thanks - but its only partially there - I got it to the entry axis but when I zoom it still cuts off the imported file, the closer I get.

Can you upload your file through Dropbox or wetransfer so we can have have a look at it ? It could be due to blocks in the dwg

I don’t do acad - I use MicroStation, so this was converted to .dwg and its what I have been trying to imp[ort. Thanks for your help!

Is this what you are expecting to see? Your .DWG has many stray labels and entities which import miles away from the origin.

The main culprit are some lines labeled “1FtConc” about 22 miles away from the origin, look at the size of the blue bounding box which tells you what is included within the component. If you are looking for only the bulk of the plan that lives near the origin, then the simple way to is to open the imported .DWG for editing, draw a selection box around the area you want, copy that to the clipboard then erase the imported .DWG component and paste in place the stuff you copied. If you need some of the entities that are scattered you will have to do more careful work with the outliner.

in addition to what @endlessfix said, which would be the right thing to do, for the next time you need to export from microstation, make sure you don’t have stray lines wandering about. It’s always best to pull the problem out by the roots.
Personally, to make sure none of this happens, before saving as dwg, I copy only what I need and paste it in a new file, especially if it had been sent to me by another company.
Did you notice you had a warning when import completed in sketchup ? “some geometry is very far from origin, etc.”. If you see this message again, go back to where it came from and clean !

Yes I noticed those remote items- so, I did a void clip to remove those items but apparently it didn’t. Those were imported from the architects files Excellent idea on the cut and re-paste. So…I did that cleaned it all up…it imported to the right location but still…when viewed from one direction it all cuts off. see attached file:

Upload the .skp. Not the .dwg

hey…I didn’t save the other non-working one…so I started a new .skp, uploaded the better cleaned up file and Volia all fixed! Finally! I do appreciate your help…I’m getting it…the .dwg has to be super clean, or is screwed up from day 1…makes sense Thanks all!


Indeed, many problems can often be traced to sloppy CAD files before import. :+1: