Sketchup alternatives

What other free sketchup alternatives also use the 3d warehouse AND have a similar interface to sketchup itself?. Blender is too difficult to follow for this senior citizen…also, no way I can afford a sketchup pro subscription on a senior fixed income.

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The 3D Warehouse is specifically for SketchUp users. There are some applications that can import .skp files but you would have to download files from the Warehouse in your internet browser.

Presumably you’re using SketchUp as a hobbyist. Why not use SketchUp Free?

Your profile says you are using SketchUp 2017 Make. You could keep using it.

I would, but I can’t seem to import components …even using the collada files. All I get is wire frames with no textures.

regarding sketchup free…as a web based unit only…neither my internet nor computer is equipped to keep up with the demand

Are you extracting the contents of the Collada file corectly? You should end up with a folder contain the materials and the .dae file. What are you trying to download?

I’ll have to screenshot and show what happens.

You could also use the open Newer Version extension from the Extension Warehouse. Download the .skp file from the Warehouse and use the extension to open it.

BTW, after importing the .dae you can edit the materials in the file and remove the transparency.

Downloading components or model from 3D warehouse might be more demanding from your internet connection then installing the web based app as a local app.

I can recommend you FormZ by AutoDesSys. There is a Free version and two paid ake plans as perpetual licenses. Opens and saves SKP files. Also the way of modeling is similar but it has many tools for nurbs, take a look at this.

Here is what I am getting…Architectural template - feet and inches … look at the bathroom set…very basic…I can’t get rid of the wire frame contour lines.

This is simply an issue of learning to smooth geometry. Fortunately, all you have to do is watch this video!

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As @TheOnlyAaron indicated, you just need to learn how soften edges. As you say, “very basic”. Looking for an alternative program because of this is like buying a different car because you haven’t learned how to turn on the headlights in the one you’ve got.

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What kind of thing do you model? Blender isn’t as difficult as it seems, the UI can be a bit overwhelming but once you get to know it it’s a great software and there are addons that let you download all kind of assets from blender like blender kit, If you model architecture there’s a free software called CYPE architecture, it’s more similar to Archicad or Revit than to sketchup and includes a library of assets as well.

Also turn off profile edges.

I do like Sketchup Pro for some things and it is easy to learn and fun to use even as a beginner and a bit, so I think you should persist with the Pro version because of Layout and the powers to generate scaled drawings and you are not needing it for actual production design or construction work.
However, I am learning Blender right now and for me there are a few direct parallels with SU in that they are both polygonal surface modelers and so a range of common or similar techniques for dealing with surfaces / faces in some areas.
Blender is many times more complex yes, but the UI is superb, the toolset insanely good, the support on you tube like for SketchUp, is endless and generally excellent, and the range of modeling methods, solutions and opportunities seem almost limitless and it is super fun to use. I love it and heading for later on towards like yourself, I can guarantee you Blender is the total bee knees and free.

Sketchup has some great things going for it too when you get yourself a bunch of plug-ins and learn how to use them the options are many and sometimes it is horse for courses - scaled drawing output is important to me and Blender does not have that, but it has 2 built in render engines so a user does not need to be buying add on render engines it is all contained unlike even the free version of SketchUp and these are not toy render engines plus it has a virtually unlimited materials options, while SketchUp seems oriented towards different things and people .They both have strong points no doubt.
However, if you are not going to be able to buy subscriptions for software and you do not need scaled drawing output, it is worthwhile asking yourself what is it that you want to do with a 3D modeling program ?
It might be that the free SketchUp is enough and that is awesome because it is a cool program.
Still, Blender is also free and free SU vs free Blender is not a fair comparison IMHO. I disagree Blender is hard to learn - if you can use SU you can learn other programs it is only desire and time, and of course like SU, Blender has a universe of free plug-ins , content, materials and support, it is just attitude man,. get amongst it.

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I empathize with you. I have felt this way at times, myself. But I just haven’t found anything else to scratch my itch to create…

Presumably you’re using SketchUp as a hobbyist.

I am a hobbyist, myself. So I can’t afford a pro subscription, either.

Why not use SketchUp Free?

I don’t use SketchUp Free (i.e. the web version) because it does not have all the features of SU 2015 Make. And even though I have pretty good internet speeds, I find it lags. But… (see below)

Your profile says you are using SketchUp 2017 Make.

I have SU 2017 Make also, but I rarely use it. I prefer SU 2015, because I find the performance of the 2017 Make to be unusable on my 2014 machine.

I can’t seem to import components…

Where do you get the components from? Why are they collada files?

Thanks, @MikeWayzovski - I might just try that!

If the component already had softened edges that end up “hardened” by the time @RWK gets them imported, then it’s a real pain to find all those edges that should be softened again… So let’s be careful about saying it is “simply an issue of learning…” and “you just need to learn…”.

I have found Blender to be pretty inscrutable, and I’m a software developer! I tried learning it twice - granted I didn’t have many hours to put into it. I think Blender assumes too much knowledge of computer graphics concepts (this is also a criticism I have for some of the rendering tools I have tried). At least SU, though a little buggy here and there, is fairly intuitive for starting out.

I’m intrigued to learn more about FormZ and CYPE, though, again, I don’t have a lot of time / motivation to learn new tools.

Back to SketchUp Free on the web… I said previously that I don’t use it, but that’s not completely true. I do sometimes open up SU Free to access the 3D Warehouse (Trimble cut off access to the warehouse from SU 2015 / 2017). I find something in the warehouse that I want to use, and I download it to my machine in 2015 format, so I can import it directly into my model. No converting to collada or anything like that…

Would that work for you?

[Sorry, I gave wrong information, above. Apparently SU Free has changed, so I am no longer able to download models in earlier formats. So my brief encounter with SU Free has come to an end - it is completely useless to me.]

there is a free extension by eneroth that allows you to open recent files in older sketchup, on PC.

Sketchup files since 2021 are the same (until now at least), so you can download SU files from the warehouse and use them in either 15 or 17.

That worked! I was able to get things imported into SU 2015. :sunglasses:

Eneroth saves the day! :tada:

Thanks, nab, for the pointer. :wink: