SketchUp BIM Workflow

Nowadays in Europe we are quite concerned about the need to carry out our projects under BIM methodology.
I attach my little workflow in case it is useful for anyone.

English version:
SketchUp Bim Workflow.pdf (15.6 MB)

Spanish version:
SketchUp Bim Workflow ES.pdf (11.8 MB)

Extensions links:


Excellent resource !
I’m sure many will benefit from this; we would have done when we were starting out !


Can I share my SketchUp BIM Workflow based on VBO workflow here?

02. vbo_sketchup_tag (en).pdf (1.1 MB)

All based on Tags/Layers and a plugin to automatically mappings tags to IFC named “5D+ Auto VBO”
here: 5D+ Auto VBO now supports export 2D DXF with layers - Extensions - SketchUp Community

It’s quite simple.


Of course!

We should organize a videoconference among all those who want to share our BIM knowledge, what do you think?
Surely a few of us can get together and learn from each other?


buildingSMART International has just announced that IFC 4.3 now formally is approved and published as an international standard by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

More information:

Hopefully SketchUp will also embrace this standard and improve IFC support in upcoming updates/releases


fingers crossed too !

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Hopefully. I hope they take the standard seriously.

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Yeah, sure. Why not?

The need for IFC4.3 is primarily used in civil applications (talk about road(s)map :slight_smile:
Trimble Quadri is already compatible:

Since this app uses conversion rules to map other fileformats (dwg/tekla/rhino/SketchUp) to a set of ‘features’ inside Quadri, it is easier to map those into the 4.3 schema.

When first introduced back in 2015 or so, the ifc importers for SketchUp relied on third party open source , which makes it harder to maintain (and adapt to trimBIM).
A few hurdles were taken since, but the industry keeps evolving.

The need of IFC is for “collaboration” we (SketchUp users) also want to collaborate with Civil Projects. Most of the civil projects include Buildings so if you want to participate in them you will need IFC 4.3

I downloaded the IFC.4.3 and created an .skc file:

(Compressed, the skc is in the zip)
IFC (65,2 KB)

When imported in SketchUp, one can see these added elements (via the filter file);


Have fun!

Note: I did not tested with export.


Good news. I’ll test it.

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As a museum exhibit designer I find more and more often I need to interact with others who use BIM (generally of the Revit variety), but I don’t know how to classify my design work because it doesn’t fall into building standards. Does anyone have experience or recommendations for integrating out-of-the ordinary components ranging from interactive digital elements, traditional exhibit components like casework and objects, to a variety of unique sculptural elements into a BIM workflow, particularly using SketchUp? These things all may rely on the architecture for installation: for instance, suspended LED walls—electrical, structural, data; cabinetry with power and humidity sensors; heavy objects like vehicles on display (think military). The design process is sometimes concurrent with the architecture, and sometimes it follows fast. Any wisdom to impart?

Maybe this can help you it’s part of

You can ask for an specific item in Building Smart forum

I would suggest to keep it simple and just use IfcBuildingElementProxy. It is important to add some additional Info (Rightclick > Dynamic Components > DC Options) after you have assigned the classification tag.
Check the advanced attributes for this, too.

With SketchUp 2024, it comes with the option to tesselate or give it more body, check the release notes here:

Standard tesselated for smaller file size, off course also dependent on how complex the geometry is.


TC view Art

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Receive an Ifc model with all elements as IfcBuildingElementProxy is the worst for a Bim Manager.

The problem of rejection that we SketchUp users have against other modelers like Revit or Archicad is that we give them a lot of reasons by exporting bad IFC files. Exporting everything as IfcBuildingElementProxy is giving them many reasons to reject our models.

When you want to quantify a BIM model for example, you need to know what IFC class the elements have in order to distinguish them from each other. You cannot mix LED walls-electrical, structural, humidity sensors etc as the same class.

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Oh, I agree on this, but we have to start somewhere. I actually had some art in mind, which is probably more difficult to categories.
While other programs have more way’s to automate these things, I doubt they can handle everything in a museum, let alone make the right relationships.


The filter in the classifier toolbar makes it easier to search for the right classification when it is ’ unsimplified’ but the key here is, if the BIM manager didn’t provide a proper IDS ( Information Delivery Specification ) it kind of defeats the whole purpose of the collaboration with different softwares.

Just fill out as much as you can in the Component options, so the data can be read and be used to differentiate or be grouped by:


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@rtches is right, we are often giving the stick with which to be beaten by the Big Boy BIMmers :smiley:
but @MikeWayzovski is right to point out that if you don’t have an IDS that relates to a particular building dictionary for example, the basic ifc2x3 schema is pretty lightweight…
If you do have a particular dictionary reference, or indeed do a deeper search,you might like to use @brewsky 's bSDD plugin…

But if you do, then I would strongly recommend using his other plugin, ifc_manager to export your file, as the native ifc export from SU is still all messed up & will not necessarily keep your classifications intact !

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Wow, thanks for all of the great input. This will give me a lot to dig into.

This is just what you were looking for Search IFC class - find the correct IFC class to use in your BIM model

BlenderBim is doing a really good work.