Selection tool to select connected faces in one plane - SU8

selection

#1

Imagine situation that you work on terrain and you need to select all connected faces in one plane. This means to select all faces in the same elevation of the same hill (but the faces but be connected). How would you do it? Is there some selection tool (for free)?

Also is there some tool which can extend the connected faces selection + N faces? Or just select the outer border of the faces selection?

And the last request, is there tool which can save or restore the selection? This means, when I lost my selection to restore the previously saved selection. This would be tremendously helpful.


#2

Take a look at these extensions:

1- Selection Toys and Selection Memory. [by ThomThom]
2- Selection Memory and Selection Memory 2 ($) [by Rick Wilson]
3- Selection Manager [by dominikh] - This plugin seems to be the most advanced of all. You can save & load selections even after exit & reopen SketchUp file! (Read the instructions there given by dominikh)


#3

I know this tool ST 2.2, but when I asked I did not expect there is such tool there. Is it? I will check it once more.

Edit:
Now I see there is in context menu one more Select menu then I was used to use. And this is Selection Toys menu, I didn’t know of. So now I managed to select Connected Faces by Area.

Is there also saving and restoring of the selection?
I did not found out how to select border of selected faces. I mean the outer border of the selected area in a plane.


#4

I could use some clarification of both what you mean and what you want to do with the faces once you select them. The core issue is that both “elevation” and “plane” are infinitely thin things. An absolute match to them usually won’t yield much.

In a terrain mesh, most faces are not purely horizontal. They are tilted. So what does it mean to be “in the same elevation” when most faces have each corner at a different elevation? Perhaps that one or more of the corner vertices of the faces lie within some range of elevation? Similarly, each face lies in a plane defined by its corner vertices, but except in an area where the terrain is dead flat, no two planes will be the same.

If you want to select within a range of elevation, one way to do it using native tools would be to view the terrain from the side and drag a Selection Tool window across the model covering the range you need. You could use a left-to-right window to get only faces entirely in the range or a right-to-left window to get faces with any portion in the range. Then orbit the model to see what you got and, as needed, remove non-connected faces from the selection.


#5

The terrain which I create is on this way: I select some square faces in one plane and then with move tool I drag it up on blue axis +4m. This creates elevated area. Once deselected I have problem to select all the elevated area connected faces…

Manual selection is too much work. Next problem is that when you make mistake and SU will deselect them, you lost a lot of work. So I would like to save the selection and have the possibility to restore selection if needed. Raster based editor programs like Photoshop have channels, which can save raster data like selection or masks. And similar thing is needed for SU.

Selection toys Context menu - Select -> Connected Faces by Area work well, but when I add some extra triangles to the selection, I need to save it. Too often times I get lost of the selection.


#6

Did you not notice the second plugin that @filibis offered you.


#7

Ah, I will check it up! I think he updated the post. I’m sure.


#8

Selection Memory

Can you tell me how to use this?
I see just:
Edit » Cycle Previous Selections
But how to save the selection?


#9

When selected , make component, you could then save it . (Rightclick->Save as )


#10

Do you speak about Selection Memory plugin? Because this does not make sense. I do not speak about duplication of entities. When you select faces of mesh and create component that creates copy of selected entities and passes them to Components. But that’s not what I want. How could I restore such selection? Clicking on Component item will create new object, which is not what I need.


#11

If you have something selected, you can make it a component, there is no other way to save selections
Could be a nice feature request , to go back and forth in the selections, like zoom previous and next


#12

I am sure it is possible in Ruby. But not sure if anyone had the idea to make a plugin for this. Even if I had the code in Ruby, this would be a bit complicated to write it to console every time I need to update/store my selection or restore it from memory.


#13

The original question was about surfaces on specific height, I would set camara to parallel and select front view in standard views


#14

I have already managed to select the squares which was in the connected same elevation.

Now I give you a little bit different but similar task. How would you select the area of the “island” in the red circles but leave a small border around it? I mean to select almost all titles but leave about 1-2 “border” non selected. Here by “border” I do not mean the edges, but the faces which are on the border of the island. By other words, the titles which are near the green background of the image, should not be selected, but the inner of the island yes.

The island is all same height.

Edit:
I have found this process to select border of faces:

  1. Select -> Faces By Face

  2. Select -> Bounding Edges (This operation takes a lot of Time! Cca 10 minutes)

  3. Select Only -> Selection border

  4. Select -> Connected Faces

  5. To select the area without border I would need to invert the selection (in the faces which are in the island). Is it possible?

I tried: Invert Selection

This is the moment when i would like to save the selection before I deselect the rest of model.

A moment of tension. I must be very careful while deselection. I do not want to suffer heart attack when I would do a mistake and deselected all.

And here is the result:

So works. :slight_smile:

Extended process:
After I selected the area at image above, I have moved the entities up +4.5m. Then I can repeat the process above with s small change:

The area which is selected is not that big.

After step 4. I will fill it by different material because I cannot repeat the invert selection now.

Then I deselect all and click again in the same place with select->Connected by Material.

This result in this selection:

Which selects the area which I want to move up. And i can repeat this process as many times I want.


#15

Selection Memory lets you cycle through your previous selections.


#16

There are more plugins that might suit your needs better:
1- Selection Memory and Selection Memory 2 ($) [by Rick Wilson]
2- Selection Manager [by dominikh] - This plugin seems to be the most advanced of all. You can save & load selections even after exit & reopen SketchUp file! (Read the instructions there given by dominikh)

I edited my first post to include all these plugins.


#17

Thank you very much.

Filibis:
The best answer. Selection Manager is exactly what I looked for. It will be great help for me. End of frustration for incidental deselections. :smile:

Edit:
I thought, one more thing would be useful when you need to expand your selection (faces) +n faces. Or reduces them -n faces. Possibility to select connected faces +n titles inwards, outwards or in both directions.


#18

Check this plugin to do such things: QuadFace Tools


#19

How to move the toolbar? I cannot move it and it takes too much space. I just see nothing on lower resolution of screen.

Edit:
Ah, I got it working. I move it uppwards to be the first toolbar in top.

Thank you, this is also good plugin.

Edit 2:
Now I noticed: When I select “island” of titles… Then I press Shrink selection, so it will reduce only top and bottom. It look like the function uses rectangle algorhytm. It looks like it can not to work with Selection Toys -> Select -> Select by Area. It just looks like working only with default “Select” tool in SU.

When I try Shrink selection of the selected Island so it does not start with the borders. I repeat it and it removes the edges from the top. Maybe the calculation is based on a middle of the area, This algorithm does not work well


#20

I’m not quite sure what you mean by ‘reduce only top and bottom’ and about algorythm. (@thomthom might reply you on this) Did you check his great documentation by the way?

I don’t have that menu, are you sure you typed correctly?