As I have grown to use SketchUp for all of my architectural production needs, my models have grown to be complex. Hundreds of components, dozens of layers, materials and scenes. SketchUp’s interface that dealt with these, while simple and effective for, say furniture, doesn’t scale very well for big buildings and the production drawings that I need to take from my models. For taking reports (using the “Generate Reports” tool), I expect you would need an even higher degree of organisation.
So my wish is for SketchUp 2018 to be the big ORGANISATION update, so that advanced and beginner users alike can happily organise complex models. I think a complete revamp on all these fronts would be a good start:
1. Material Palette (at least for Mac)
- the ability to see materials and their names next to each other (for Mac). I find that material names are becoming more important in my workflow.
- search bar to filter the list of materials
2. Scenes tabs
- when you have more than say, 12 scenes, the scenes tab gets awfully cluttered, to the point where you can’t actually read the name of the scenes, as it gets truncated (I resorted to shortening each scene name to a few characters to work around the problem, but it is not elegant). I have a suggestion for prefixing Scene names to sort them like this:
more discussion on this here: Managing scenes in SU
3. Layers panel
- Again, with the number of Layers I have to deal with, the panel is getting too cluttered. Other CAD programs have layers that are grouped according to its prefix (separated with “-” or “_”, and can be hidden and expanded. This would be a nice simple touch. Prefixed layer names are standard practice in the construction industry’s CAD.
Vectorworks does this:
…which works perfectly well for simple and complex layer systems.
4. Components Browser Panel
- This hasn’t changed for ages, and has become quite unintuitive.
- get rid of the “search 3D warehouse” - it is obsolete
- search bar should filter components in model, and search the local library.
- have the ability to show the selected component in the view in the Component Browser panel.
Not too much to ask, is it?