Synced Sketchup Models

I am preparing architectural plans/construction documents for a residence using Sketchup and Layout. If possible, I am thinking to utilize two models linked to one Layout file. The purpose is to have one model for design the building and all of its architectural components: walls, floors, ceilings, roofs, basement, doors, windows, decks, finishes, The second model would be for structural layout, building details, plumbing, HVAC, and electrical schematics and collision management. Is there a way to sync the basics of the design model’s floor plans, envelop and openings with the Structural and details model to ensure they are the same and changes in one model would be reflected in the other. Obviously, the structural plans and project specific details would mostly be developed once the design concept is somewhat solid. And not to confuse things, more typical details utilized on multiple projects might be in a third Sketchup model but would not be synced with the other models I might link directly into the Layout file or import the appropriate details into the structural Sketchup file.

I think I know how to link multiple sketchup files into on Layout file

Any specifics or simple guidance would be very helpful. If you can tell me I;m completely out in left field that helps as well. Thanks for your assistance.

You could make the common design elements in one model, then make it all into one component.

Then R-click, Save As… a component to a file.

Then in your Model A, Import (or use Xref plugin) the Common component.

Do the same in your Model B.

Then add details to A, different details to B.

If you have to edit Common, then open and edit it, then reimport into A and B.

Or edit the instance ‘in place’ in A or B, close the instance, and Save As… component Common again, and reimport into the other (B or A, respectively)

That should work.

Depending on how large you think the models will get, you may just be able to do it within one model as long as there is careful layer organization.

I did something similar before where I had all the structural elements in one overall group, and design elements in another, then assigned each to separate layers (e.g. “Structure” and “Design”). You can continue doing this drilling down to smaller and smaller groups as necessary (i.e. columns, walls, you name it).

These layers then become visibility controls as you set up your scenes for LayOut. For example just turn off all your design layers to isolate the structure groups and make sure the scene is saved with those layers off.

If it’s too large for one model, I would start one model with the necessary reference information, and then save an additional copy of it. Then rename the copy to your second model. When you import one model into the other for reference you can sync it to the most recent version of the file by right clicking on it and selecting Reload. My biggest tip here for syncing models is try to avoid moving things in relation to the origin, since reloading models will reference that point as a constant. That saves you time having to reset the correct location each time.

Even with synced models, having a handle on layer visibility will still probably be your best friend.

I hope that helps!

Thanks John,

I appreciate your assistance. I’ll give that a try to see if it works.


Use layers too, or instead, as d_b suggests

Thanks for your help. Exactly correct file size is my concern, the residence and detail may be small enough to manage with layers.


You’re welcome! I’ve abused SketchUp with some pretty large combined models so I’m constantly looking for systems to handle large amounts of info. It’s so easy to max out what your computer can handle…

I am always happy to help even if I don’t understand the reasoning. So here goes,…

You are completely out in left field.” :wink:

(But I still fail to get why a baseball metaphor will really help you so much.) :snicker: