NEWBE INTRO -- AND CALL FOR HELP running SKUP with an ancient MacBook

Hello. My name is Larry Kunkler (aka: kunkprime, and kunk)

I am a complete NEWBY too. SketchUp. I’m also a retired Mechanical Design Engineer. As such I am used to CADD systems like Pro Engineer, Unigraphics, Solid works and Fusion 360. I’ve tried SKUP a few times, but didn’t like it’s operation or lack of associativity. It seemed counter intuitive. Then a friend showed me (Mitch Moore) his amazing work on SKUP. I was blown away and decided to give SKUP a serious re-try. The light finally went on and I was having much good fun with SKUP.

All was happiness and light until I spilled a bowl of cereal on my open MackBook Pro…It was dead, really, really Dead. You would think the dummies at Apple would put a membrane between the keyboard and mom board et. al. But of course that would mean fewer replacement sales…just sayin.

So, now I’m using my Wife’s ancient MacBook. It will support simple tasks like browsing and UTube but, that’s about it.

It won’t run Fusion 360, LightBurn, and is not able to run SKUP very well. The main problem there is no header or top (main) tool bar. It’s still slow (like me) and problematic but, should be ok for practice if I could just get the header or top (main) tool bar to magically appear…HELP

In closing, I live in the Beaverton, OR area and own a small (micro) woodworking business named “Forest Glen Woodworks”. I have been a woodworker just about my whole life and have a very well equipped shop. I also just added an Ortur LM-3 to the electronics area but can’t get it to run with my (wife’s) ancient MacBook.

Well that’s about all…kunk

I don’t know what to suggest for running SketchUp on a “Wife’s ancient MacBook” but if you are using Sketchup for your “small (micro) woodworking business named “Forest Glen Woodworks””. it would be clear that you need to be using SketchUp Go or SketchUp Pro. Certainly not SketchUp Free as your profile indicates. It might be that SketchUp Go would run on your old computer but it might not. It might come down to needing to replace your hardware if it can’t be repaired.

Hey Dave,

Thank you so much for the info. My “business” is just an (IRS defined) hobby at this point. Although I sure would like to see it actually make some money. I’ve built around 20 beautiful laminated edge grain cutting boards this year. All of them went to friends and family at the f&f price of $0. I think I may have just solved why my “business” isn’t making any money, ha ha.

I sure don’t mind paying for SW if it works for me. I think SKUP might, but I’ll need some time on a working copy before I spend money on it. I have also had a Fusion 360 free license for many years, It’s a much more powerful program that I am more familiar with. It will probably remain my go to SW. But, I like SKUP because it seems more powerful than I first thought, and has less complexity and “overhead”.

I also agree with you about the hardware issues. I am currently looking into a new Mac Mini M2 as a replacement for my MacBook Pro. It’s fast, powerful, and cost effective…What’s not to like.
Thanks again for your timely reply…kunk

1 Like

SketchUp can be as “powerful” as F360 and I think more intuitive. Look at the link in my profile if you want to see examples of some of the stuff I’ve modeled with SketchUp. I use it professionally for woodworking related projects plus other things.

Sometimes it helps to just talk through a problem and you end up finding the solution on your own.

No matter what, the hardware needs to support the software. Out of curiosity are you wedded to Macs? As a shareholder I’d like you to purchase a new Mac. As a SketchUp user I would suggest you at least look at some PC’s with Nvidia graphics as an alternative.

1 Like

Dave R

Thanks for the very helpful suggestions. Unfortunately for me I’ve been using Macs since they were “Lesas.” Now that thing was a pain in the. I then bought one of the first B&W Macintosh and got my first exposure to Mac Project and Mac draw. Then I set up my Engineering group with Macs to do project management and low level CAD. I’ve pretty much used Macs my whole life. I really like Macs but Hate Apple’s borderline unethical business practices. A ture love/hate relationship.

I’ll probably be replacing my beloved Pro with a Mac Mini M2. The thing is a beast and can be had for $500 or less all day long. It’s also hard to spill things on remote puter-in-a-box and keyboards are dirt cheap.
Thanks again for the suggestions…kunk

1 Like

Do you know the model of your wife’s MacBook? I used sketchup pro for many years for my work on a 2013 13” MacBook Pro without any issues, in 2021 I got an M1 Max MacBook Pro to replace it and some months ago I updated hardware for an old pc that I hadn’t use in years, updated may be not the correct term since the only part I reused is the case, I love Macs but I’ve been doing archviz also so I needed some Nvidia powerful gpu and I got the RTX 4070ti, I wasn’t much into windows as well, windows vista and 7 were really awful but now I’m enjoying more using a pc with windows 11. In your case I would go for an m2 Mac mini, M series Macs are awesome, the only negative point is the lack of gpu power compared to a Nvidia dedicated gpu, the support it has with rendering engines to make use of they’re Ray tracing tech has no match for now, but I don’t think you need that power as a hobbyist and still MacOS is more enjoyable than windows imo.

Personally I think nothing Apple is cost effective…


Thank you for the excellent information. I think you"re correct the MM M2 is the way for me to go. Now I’ve just got to convince the boss of me…kunk

You guys are happy with the silicon chip?? Trimble support tells me that they do not support SU pro on the mac oS Sonoma which ships with the 2023 Macbooks–. My experience with trying to adapt the latest SKU 2023 version Macs OS Sonoma (AKA version 2023) is a nightmare. system crashes, files not upgrading from my older SU 2015 and extensions simply not loading. Trimble tells me that they cannot predict when they will decide to support Sonoma and Apple apparently refuses to communicate with Trimble. Further Apple recommends highly against downgrading their OS to the recent OS 2022(Ventura), so I am caught in the middle. Or so it seems…

Extremely happy with it.

At this time of the year I like to think that Sketchup 2024 is around the corner, that version will have support for Sonoma, I haven’t updated the OS of my Mac but if you search on this forum you’ll see that the main issue that sketchup was having with sketchup 2023, something related with the materials, is solved with the latest update from Apple, I think I read that it wasn’t solved for previous versions of sketchup and sketchup wont release an update to fix that for old versions. If you still use Sketchup 2015, you’ll have to deal with those issues or upgrade to the latest version.

Yes I can stick with 2015 with no model warehouse access and no Trimble support. So I am more or less trapped in SU 2023 running on Mac’s OS Sonoma . And its a lot more than just adjustments to “materials” at least to my experience. (the latter work fine at my end but the other problems are far more substantial–as enumerated above. It calls into question as to why anyone on a mac running OS Sonoma (2023) should have purchased SU 2023 in the first place.
Its not just a matter of downgrading the OS on a Mac at least one running with the silicon / m2 chipped machine: The Mac folks prohibit you from doing so. Thus it appears that other Mac SU users as myself in similar circumstances cannot down grade out to a lower Mac OS and we can’t go forward until SU 2024 comes out and have been stuck in limbo between Mac and Trimble policies here.
I would have appreciated more up font transparency from Trimble : Question is: are they going to at least offer a refund or at least a credit for SU 2024 ?

We can’t answwer that question for you. Contact customer support and ask them.

If you are going to choose to stick with an old version of any application you should ensure that you don’t let the computer’s operating system advance out from under it.

This issue has been fixed on Apple’s end since the problem was created on Apples end. You can read more in this thread.

1 Like