Please, I need help, I am over my head with my project

Thank you SU community for your warm welcome.

I started to draw a roof access ladder, and I was able to figure a few things myself. This is my first SU drawing, other than simple buildings sketches.
This ladder consists of steel tubes, and I have no clue how to draw a curved tube/cylinder.
Very much a novice at this, and I would really appreciate some step by step help.
Best regards,
KarlMy 3-D Drawing.skp (194.8 KB)

Select the curve, choose Follow Me tool, then click on the circular face to form a curved tube:

Your model has other problems though, such as lots of reversed faces. All the blue/grey faces are outside in. There’s also gaps between your tube sections.

Thank you Gordon,

I just did this, and it was fairly easy, as I had drawn the centerline from the beginning.

Not sure what to do with the other noted problems yet, but I am happy to see my project to take shape…even you can’t look too close at it.

Again, thank you for you help

Best regards,
Karl Volger

There’s quite a few things that need fixed. I’ll start with the bracket at the bottom of the ladder. It consists of two parallel faces which are only connected by the holes in them. There should be faces all the way around the perimeter too.

Unfortunately, the screen capture sofware I use, LICEcap, doesn’t record my keystrokes so I’ll try and explain them here. I selected both plates and made them a group. Selected the face furthest from the ladder and cut it to clipboard, clicked out of the group, pasted in place. Edited the group, push-pulled the face until it met the face I pasted outside the group. Then deleted the face outside the group. Edited the group again, softened faces to make the facets on the inside of the holes smoother.

To clean up your model, I’d delete all the tubular faces of the ladder. When you do that, you’ll see some stray edges that need deleted. You’ll also see some of the rungs don’t touch the upright edge of the ladder. One of the rungs has a centre line that isn’t level or perpendicular with the upright stringer of the ladder. Clean all of those things up before you start to use follow-me to create the tubes.
My 3-D Drawing_gm1.skp (211.6 KB)

On the reverse faces issue (grey surfaces)…right click on the object look down the list for reverse faces …If you have lots of grey faces click on a white face then right click and look down the list for Orient Faces. If your not exporting this to a render program or 3d print then it wont matter so much if you dont

Here’s me doing some cleanup. Yes, I’m a bit bored being stuck in the house longer than usual…


About 2/3 of the way through you’ll see me erasing a rung to find there’s no edge inside so I undo the delete and draw an edge inside the rung from centre point of one circle to centre point of the one at the other end. There’s also a rung with a small gap which I meant to go back to fix but didn’t do it in this video. There’s the 4th rung which has a centre line off the level and not parallel to the cylindrical surface around it.

Sometimes it’s better to just start again. I noticed that if you look at Camera -> Standard Views > Front, the stringers of your ladder are more than 6 inches out of alignment:
Screen Shot 2020-04-05 at 02.19.32

This may help your progress The Learning Center Check out the sketch up Fundamentals

Thank you Paul for your help

I just get to use the Follow Me tool, but there ate still lots of mistakes to be worked on. This is my really first interesting drawing project.

Best regards,
Karl Volger

Thanks Gordon again,

I am sitting here in La Paz, Mexico, in the same situation, that everything is going to be closed off soon. This gives me time to learn more about SU and create something usable. Tomorrow on Sunday, it’s my special time to connect with my family in Germany, to hear their stories about their situation. Later on I shall dig back into the drawing project. Eventually I like to get the correct dimensions displayed, but right now I am happy to see that project taken shape on.

I really do appreciate your effort, and I will try to follow your steps.

Best regards,
Karl Volger

Gordon, I might have to do that, with the correct dimensions from my 2-D drawings. The left stringer is relative simple, just one tilt back angle, but the right one, some tilt back angle and a slew angle towards the left stringer. That skew is then straighten out, to meet the top bracket parallel with the left one.

Best regards,
Karl Volger

Thank you Dave,

Yes, that is a very good suggestion, as I have jumped into this without any real knowledge about it.

Best regards,
Karl Volger

Something to remember when you are using the follow me tool is to select all the lines and curves you want the shape to follow first…so all those lines are turned to blue…then click on the follow me icon…then the shape you want to follow the path…that way any awkward joins or angles will be covered

Thank you guys again, I just saw your corrective videos…Whoa!!!
Yes Gordon, I will start over again, trying to make a correct dimensional model. The position and the location of the top and bottom brackets are the given fixed points of this ladder design, and I shall start drawing them correctly.
Will keep you posted

I do feel real stupid, not finding the Learning Center and studying it first…much to learn here.
Thank you RLGL for pointing to it.