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Drawing a Compression Spring

Drawing a Compression Spring

A friend of mine e-mailed me asking for some help on how to draw a small compression spring. He's working on a detail sketch of a small latch and wanted to add the spring. The basic process is to...

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Drawing a Live Edge Slab

Drawing a Live Edge Slab

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The other day a woodworker sent me a photograph of a live edge slab of walnut. He wanted to know if it could be drawn in SketchUp. Here's what I came up with.   The image he sent me was a JPG file...

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A Kissing Gate at Hadrians Wall

A "Kissing Gate" at Hadrian's Wall

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We just returned from a hiking trip along Hadrian's Wall in England at the border of Scotland. This is a stone wall built long ago during the reign of the Romans. We only did about 25 miles of the...

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Furniture Drawing Styles - Old vs. New

Furniture Drawing Styles - Old vs. New

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I'm continually interested in furniture drawing styles. I admire many of the older styles (pre-computer) for their beauty and efficiency. It's hard to imagine how they were able to get so much...

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Drawing Roundovers on Intersecting Parts

Drawing Roundovers on Intersecting Parts

This is a model based on a stool designed by Pierre Jeanneret and manufactured in the 1950's in both France and India. I came across a couple of photos of an original and decided to use it for my...

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Turned Cylinder or Paper Towel Roll?

Turned Cylinder or Paper Towel Roll?

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I rarely use Materials and Textures in my SketchUp files. While these are critical features for many SketchUp users, I'm not so motivated to make the hardware and wood look more realistic. Im...

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Using Follow Me--Some Setup Considerations

Using Follow Me--Some Setup Considerations

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Follow Me is one of the most useful native tools in Sketchup for creating complex shapes. If the tools in SketchUp have analogues in the shop, Follow Me can be thought of as a router or shaper as...

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Angled Dovetails - Knife Tray - Third Phase

Angled Dovetails - Knife Tray - Third Phase

This is the third in a series on modeling this 18th C. Williamsburg Knife Tray. In this episode I show the making of the angled dovetails in the corners. As you might expect, the splayed angle in...

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A Wooden Canteen

A Wooden Canteen

Recently I was contacted by a fellow who is into historical re-enactments. He was looking for a plan for a wooden canteen and wondered if I could draw one for him. He had a couple of photos of a...

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Williamsburg Knife Tray - Phase 2

Williamsburg Knife Tray - Phase 2

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This is second in a series re-constructing the 18th Century Williamsburg Knife Tray. In the first episode, I showed the tracing over of a hand-drawn sketch. These traced-over shapes (faces) were...

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Raked and Splayed Legs

Raked and Splayed Legs

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Stools commonly have legs that are splayed in both directions: raked and splayed. Drawing legs at these compound angles in SketchUp can be a bit challenging but there's a plugin called, of all...

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Knife Tray - Hand Sketch to Model

Knife Tray - Hand Sketch to Model

Years ago I saw this Knife Tray in a Colonial Williamsburg home. It sat on a table about 20 feet away, so this is an approximate representation of what I saw and sketched by hand. Recently, I came...

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Adding Dual Dimensions to Your Drawings

Adding Dual Dimensions to Your Drawings

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If you are using SketchUp to make dimensioned drawings and have a need to show two different dimension units, a new plugin called Dual Dims created by the plugin guru known as TIG will be a great...

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Cope & Stick Kitchen Doors

Cope & Stick Kitchen Doors

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In my shop, doors are made with through mortise & tenon joints, typical of classic 18th C. procedure. So I was quite curious about the joinery seen on our new kitchen cabinets. I wanted the classic...

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Burial Urns for Veterans

Burial Urns for Veterans

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Recently I did a volunteer SketchUp job for a group of woodworkers in North Carolina. They are building simple burial urns for veterans using their donated time and materials. These urns are getting...

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A Simple Lattice

A Simple Lattice

I was having a conversation with a friend who designs some beautiful high end kitchens and other interior spaces using SketchUp. He was showing me a sliding pet gate that his client wants to...

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Lessons in Flip Along

Lessons in "Flip Along"

The Flip Along function is one of the most confusing for newcomers to SketchUp. But it's a feature that's hard to avoid in woodworking because we continually flip, or mirror, components in our...

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Angled and Tapered Mortises

Angled and Tapered Mortises

Recently I had an e-mail from a woodworker who is getting started with SketchUp. He was struggling with drawing angled mortises. He was trying to use Push/Pull but of course Push/Pull only works in...

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When to use Groups

When to use "Groups"

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You may be curious about using "Groups" vs. "Components". Often our blog posts have emphasized the importance and effectiveness of "Components". On rare occasion we may make a Group, but Components...

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A Little Round Plant Stand

A Little Round Plant Stand

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I sketched out this little plant stand the other day as a short diversion from a very large SketchUp project I've been working on. Sometimes I find it nice to be able to just make a quick model that...

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Learn the art and science of designing furniture in SketchUp with Fine Woodworking's official blog. Moderated by a devoted community of woodworkers, we feature step-by-step SketchUp tutorials on designing components, downloads of pre-built 3D models of furniture parts, and news and information about the evolving world of digital furniture design.

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