MEP (Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing) Solutions

Hi all,

I’m really keen to start using SketchUp for our Mechanical and Electrical Design in future. The issue I seem to have is there is very limited information on extensions and workflows, especially for the Electrical elements.

It would also be great to see if anyone is using Layout for the production of MEP design and tender drawings as I’m struggling to make that move from AutoCAD unless there are some extensions I’m not currently using.

Thanks in advance for your help and feedback.

1 Like

I don’t know really well what is currently available for mechanical or plumbing but I have done some work on an electrical extension (the focus is primarily residential electrical). I will say that it is fairly basic and is only really good for inserting fixtures (outlets, switches, lights, fans, load centers etc…), it currently has no functionality for representing the actual wiring or “circuits” yet.

I think PlusSpec is able to handle plumbing and mechanical (ducts), however I’m not sure to what extent.

3skeng also has some plugins for modeling pipes and ductwork which I think are fairly comprehensive.

My electrical extension is the first plugin in my MEP suite, however I have not begun to work on the other two as of yet.

Trimble MEP began developing a subscription plugin, MEPdesigner for SketchUp c. 2014/5

Despite the glowing predictions in AEC Magazine … it didn’t last long.


Trimble apparently dropped SketchUp in favor of AutoCAD, AutoCAD MEP, and Revit.

Trimble SysQue and Revit

FWIW, there are remnants of Trimble MEPdesigner in the 3DWH

https://3dwarehouse.sketchup.com/by/trimbleMEP?tab=models

1 Like

Wow, I didn’t even know this was a thing. I did come across some of these models in the warehouse when I was researching what was available for load centers from other designers.

Ultimately I ended up designing all of my own low poly components since I am stickler for getting things dimensionally accurate and I like to follow an actual product lines that I am familiar with (eg. Square D, Carlon, Leviton, etc…).

I am curious to find out more about this extension.

I guess Trimble has their feet in both camps (SketchUp and AutoCad/Revit).

They have a number of MEP products but they all seemed to be tailored to work with AutoCad or Revit:

It makes me wonder why they decided to terminate their develop of the MEP extension. Based on the article above (AEC) there was at least 6 months of development invested into the project, and based on the screen shots it looked like it was already quite far along.

With all of this focus and market push on Revit I sometimes waiver in my faith and begin questioning why I am devoting my entire career on developing these plugins within SketchUp…

Then I actually try to use Revit and I am quickly reminded why I chose the SketchUp route. No doubt Revit is a powerful piece of software but is it a joy to use?

1 Like
3 Likes

Growth by acquisition … If you can’t buy 'em, join 'em.

June 14, 2016

1 Like

In addition to developing the extension, there’s the task of developing the content.
Why go to the trouble when you can buy it in bulk?

Nov. 7, 2016
Trimble to Acquire Building Data to Expand Constructible Model and BIM Content Offering for Construction
https://www.trimble.com/news/release.aspx?id=110716o


Trimble Building Data
http://building-data.net/

3 Likes

We need access to those Warehouses (Tekla has its own)
Many (MEP) manufacturers have their products in IFC4 format, which can’t be imported in SketchUp.

1 Like

I agree it would be great to get hold of this data as it would still be totally relevant today and a massive help to all users who wish to push forward with MEO on the platform.

Tried PlusSpec but initial view is it’s limited and will take time to build up.

1 Like

VBO developed a piping plugin… not an expert in this area but it might be of interest

1 Like