Modify a model

Updating existing models without starting from scratch.
David Heim
9m 47s

Shortcuts in Lesson

Create ComponentGG
Copy (with Move tool selected)Drag + CtrDrag + Option

Updates in 2023

In the latest version of SketchUp 2023, you may not see the Flip Along component's axis in the right-click menu. You should use the new flip tool instead. See our guide on the flip tool for details on how to use.


Welcome back. In this video, I'll show you how easy it can be to modify a SketchUp model without having to start from scratch. Here's that side table from a previous video, I'm going to transform it into a hall table. So I'm going to make it longer and narrower and taller. I'll use the move tool to do most of that, and I'll rely heavily on the inferences that SketchUp provides, so I know where to reposition things once I've changed their size and shape. Going to be begin by altering the size of the top, going to make it 40 inches long, just placing a guideline there, and I'm going to make it only 12 inches wide. I'll place another guideline, and I can use the move tool to do the stretching, just double click the top so I can make those changes.

Draw a box with the select tool around one edge to highlight it and use the move tool on that edge, click and just begin dragging till I can touch that guideline. I'll do the same thing here to shrink the top, highlight that edge with the select tool, get the move tool, click on that edge and just push until I can touch that guideline and I'll get a prompt as always.

Next thing I want to do is put the top in its new height. Get rid of these guidelines, they're just confusing. I'm going to put in one right over the blue access line and another one that goes up 30 inches and where those guidelines cross is where the top has to go. I can just highlight that by clicking once with the select tool, click until I can touch that spot where the guidelines cross. And again, I get a prompt and there's my new height. Now I want to use the offset tool on the underside of the top, so I know where to reposition the legs.

It's going to hover on that edge, click and drag toward the center type 1.5, because I just want a one and a half inch offset for the legs. I'll reposition two and then make copies. Next thing I have to do is stretch the legs, but I don't want to change anything about the untapered part of the leg. I'm just going to click on this, double click this leg to highlight it so I can make those changes and I'll use the select tool to draw a box just around that untapered part to highlight that.

And now I can go back to the move tool, click and just start pulling up and I'll touch one of those corners on the underside of the top, and that gets everything stretched just to the right length, but I haven't changed anything about the mortises or the untapered part of the leg. Next thing I'll do is, kept two of my legs in position and then copy and flip the copies into the correct position, it's going to click once on that leg. And again, rely on those inferences to know when I've got out of the correct spot, do the same thing here.

Just use the move tool, click on that corner and drag it over. And again, I get another prompt to tell me when I've hit my mark. Now I can hold on the shift key and click on those other two legs, select those and then press delete to get rid of them. Again, pull down shift while I click on the two remaining legs. This time I'll use the option key in conjunction with the move tool to make a copy, get it in position then right click and choose flip along, in this case it's the green direction.

And finally we'll work on the stretchers. Again, I can eliminate two and I'll change the size of the remaining two and make copies. We'll do the short stretcher first, click once to highlight it, jockey it into position with the move tool. Just make sure I have it right. There's my inference. I'm going to highlight this one apron, right click and choose make unique, that way I can shrink it without shrinking the other one. Highlight the end, get the move tool and drag until I can get that prompt and touch cursor to stop that move and we'll get this remaining stretcher or apron into place.

There's my prompt that tells me I'm in the right spot. And we'll stretch this one more time (silence). There you go. Now I can make copies of these stretchers and put them into position. I'll click on the short stretcher, tap option and drag this into position up here, and it's one. Do the same thing with the other.

And there is our new table. I can keep going. If I wanted to make it a little bit wider, I could. I could change out one of the aprons and replace it with a drawer if I wanted. And if I really wanted to keep going, I could keep moving and stretching and changing the size of the components until I transform this from a table into a breakfront. So as you can see, it's just as easy to change a model in SketchUp as it is to create it in the first place.