Sketch-up / LayOut difficulties. (AutoCad User)


I have been using Auto-Cad / Auto-Desk for years. But recently saw some great renderings in sketch up, and AutoCAD is just too expensive, and the 3D is pretty cumbersome. So far with the tutorials and huge library I am loving the ease of 3 dimensional drawing. HOWEVER, can I somehow lock Sketch up into 2d to put in the layout before I extrude the walls of the building? I had a hard time in layout getting anything to change dimensionally. If you look in the bottom corner I cannot seem to get a 36’ building on the space in 1/4" scale - Paper is A3 - Plus, there don’t seem to be the tools I need in layout to draw, like offset! (Which I use all the time! I also cant get the layer thickness to apply to my layers. So I went back to sketch up… is that where I should be drawing plan views?


I would suggest doing the bulk of the drawing in SketchUp and then go to LayOut for the dimensions, text and so on. There are something you might draw in LayOut like dashed lines but most of it should be in SketchUp.

You can set the camera to Parallel Projection in SU and use the standard Top view for showing the plan of your building. Create a scene in SketchUp for that view and use for the viewport in LayOut. Then you can set the scale as needed for the vieport. Scale settings are available and wouldn’t make any sense if they were in Perspective view.

There are several options for showing the plan view as well as perspective views of your raised walls. One common method is to use a section cut through the walls to show the plan. The section cut can be displayed in one scene while it can be turned off in another to show the walls in their entirety if you wish. Other section cuts could be used for interior elevations, too.


Yes. I do it all the time. I draw floor plans in sketchup from field measurements. Navigate so that you are looking straight down. Draw a rectangle large enough to be a working surface for the floor plan and then make it a group. No begin laying out the walls on the rectangle. Once you have all the walls in place, you can extrude to wall height. Check out YouTube for videos on preparing floor plans in SketchUp. After you have modeled the building, you then create scenes to depict the various drawings you want to produce- floor plans, elevations, sections and import into Layout for dimensions and annotations.


Thank you, I certainly hope you get paid for helping out the newbies!

One more question. When I try to draw a wall taller than another it seems there are restraints and I cannot go taller than what the current wall is. (I had to draw stairs from bottom up to prevent this)

I get the error “Offset limited to X”


You’re quite welcome. No pay for working here but I enjoy helping folks like you who want to learn SketchUp and LayOut.

Without seeing the model, it’s hard to tell exactly but often a Push/Pull operation can be limited when running into a slope face. There are some other cases, too. Sometimes you can get past it with a second Push/Pull operation or you might hit Ctrl to start a new Push/Pull operation.


SketchUp is similar to ACAD’s “ModelSpace”. This is where your geometry should be drawn. Just be aware that geometry interacts in SketchUp. (Edges and faces intersect, vertices stick to each other, etc.) In SketchUp, you make collections of geometry into Groups or Components to separate them from other geometry.

SketchUp’s scene pages are similar to ACAD’s saved views.

LayOut is similar to ACAD’s “PaperSpace”. LayOut can use either the model’s default view, or any/all of it’s saved scene page(s) , as scaled viewports.