New user - Query about workflow for creating a model of an object

Hi there.

I’m brand new to this forum and to SketchUp in general, I’ve been using it for two months. I have a question about workflow, the order or process with regards to how to go about recreating a real world object within SketchUp.

For example, I’d like to create the object in the attached, but I know there is probably a certain order that would be best practice to create this item.

I don’t need to be shown how to create it because I can search this forum for ways to do specific things, which I thank you all in advance for; but I would appreciate some tips regarding what order I should do things in order to create it, and what I should think about beforehand when creating objects like this so that I don’t end up having to undo work in order to correct the process.

Thanks in advance for any support you can provide to me, it is very much appreciated.


Poly x30.pdf (423.4 KB)

Depends on what you want to do with the model once created. For example, if you just want its outside to look like it does in the image, you don’t need to be bothered about what goes on inside the case. If you want to send something to be 3d printed, you need to take certain precautions.

In general, you need to work out first which elements need to be discrete and model them as a Group or Component.

Thanks Simon for responding. This model would be used for images only, no need to worry about internals.

Thank you.


Then I think I would start my modelling the silver bit separately from the dark grey bit. Once I have their basic shapes formed and connected, I would deal with some of the detail. At that point, you would have to decide how accurate and complete the visual detail needs to be. That may depend on how close up someone might be able to look at it. The basic rule in all drafting work is that adding detail follows an exponential trajectory, ie. it gets increasingly time consuming at each level. One of the problems often encountered in the 3D Warehouse is that models are over-detailed and they become high polycount and difficult to make use of. Experienced users will often simplify such models before using them. If a viewer is only going to see something at, say 1/50 scale, there is not much point in modelling the ant as it will just be a black dot, however finely detailed it may actually be. Form of output is key here.

Thank you for your help Simon.

I’m not afraid to say my inexperience with SketchUp this morning now has me asking how to actually create this object. It only has to be basic, it won’t be seen close-up, but should be obvious there are curves. Any assistance is appreciated.


This should get you started. Begin with the silver bit.

First, draw a rectangle 441.8 by 62.5. Then round off the ends. Then extrude up by 65mm. Now you have a round ended 3D shape. Then select one main surface and use scale and modifier to create universally tapered sides. Now you should have the basic shape you need for that part and can go on to refine it as much as you need.

I should say that if you are a beginner, you are jumping in at the deep end!

Thanks Simon. That’s worked perfectly for what I need. Thanks for your help. Paul

If you haven’t already done so, look at the SketchUp Campus and follow the SketchUp Essentials learning tools, at

There are also lots of tutorials on YouTube, but look for the later ones. Some of the older videos either show inefficient or just out of date examples.