2017-12.2: A SketchUp 3D drawing primer

08 Dec 2017

Average: 4.9 (10 votes)
27:05 - Dec 2017 Act II - A SketchUp 3D drawing primer (2017)

So, you want to buy a 3D printer.  Hold up there, boss!  First you’ll need to know how to create virtual models for the objects that you want to print.  Miles Hale is here to give you an introduction to SketchUp, a free software program for 3D modeling.

Links to the Quick Reference Cards for PC and Mac can be found on this page:  https://help.sketchup.com/en/article/3000081

Act III:  Bill Scobie’s Rio Grande Southern, pt. 2 ...

Go to Act III


Miles, Rick,

 I just watched your video on SketchUp and went to download it for Windows 10 directly from their web site and the only FREE version I could find is one that has to be used VIA their WebSite.
I downloaded the Pro Version Free Trial but it shows it expires in 30 days.
Where did you get your FREE version.  Is there a version for the MAC that is a free version and not one for the PC?

Thanks for your help,


The non-commercial (free) version of Sketchup 2017 is Sketchup Make. 

You get it here: https://www.sketchup.com/download?sketchup=make

Hey guys,
  I was reading further about this Free version of SkecthUp on Trimble's BLOG and it appears now with the 2018 version the FREE version is now WEB BASED ONLY.  And according to the folks on the BLOG it is terribly slow and is missing lots of features. 

So i guess us modelers will not be able to make use of the Free program Miles was so gratious to show us how to use.  Dang it, I was really looking forward to jumping in and trying this software.  Pro is just too expensive for the everyday modeler to afford to buy.

if anyone has found a source for the earlier free installable version please post a link.

Thanks, Pete

Just noticed your post and followed that link.  Although it does allow you to download a free version it is also NOT the 2017 version they state it is.  It is in fact the 2016 version and in addition is only 32 bit.

So bottom line is I guess since its free we can't complain too much...;>)

But anyway, thanks for the link!  I still do plan to check out the software to see what it can do.


This was, for me, easily the most informative segment on Train Masters TV in a very long time. I made the mistake of buying the 3-D printer first and then discovering the software required was somewhat intimidating. This segment has removed a great deal of the intimidation and has got me starting the process of exploring the software as a prelude to getting my 3-D printer up and running. I hope that it is possible to have further segments which do more than introducing the software and start teaching some basic skills germane to making components for model railroads. Andrew Bruce


Type in your web browser: Sketch Up Make

The page will offer the free version. Once it is loaded be sure to check out the Help menu at the top of the Sketch Up page. It offers some great free videos for learning the program. Kent Hurley and I both learned from these vodeos. They are short and easy to understand.

Have fun and let our trains put a smile on your face!


What was that tool you had to allow you to navigate in 3 dimensions and zoom? I believe you said it was around $100. Bob

Hello Miles,
First let me say how helpful I find your segments on TrainMasters TV. I have a copy of Sketch Up and until I watched the video on TM TV I was reluctant to use the program. Frankly, it was bewildering! Now I’ve begun a couple projects I’ve had in mind.
To my question… At the end of the video you spoke of a cheat sheet for the program's tools. I cannot find this download on the TM.TV or MRH website. Am I missing something? Can you point the way?

Best regards & keep up the excellent programs,
Harry B Houchins
Gotham Central Railroad
Eugene, Oregon

Hi guys, This is Ed Wilson from NCE. I love this video! I would like to see an entire series of these getting progressively more in depth. Including printing the final product. A tip for technology type videos: Please include more details about the type of hardware and software being used: Example: Windows or Mac, what version, etc.. Miles is using a Mac, and the Windows version of Sketchup looks a little different, and some things are not in the same spots.   


I have added the reference cards to this post

Be carefull what version you download. The page for downloads here: https://www.sketchup.com/download/all as of 24 Dec 2017 has different links for Mac OS X, Windows 64 bit and Windows 32 bit. It also has downloads for several different languaes. I downloaded the English 64 bit version for my Windows based computer, it installed version 17.2.2555 64 bit.

It appears that Sketchup Make 2017 will be the last free stand-alone version. There is this note on the site about Sketchup 2018 "With the release of SketchUp 2018 we've removed support for Mac OS X 10.10 (Yosemite). There is no longer a SketchUp Make for download, our free version of SketchUp is called SketchUp Free and available in all modern web browsers."


They were referring to the SpaceMouse by 3DConnexion, https://www.3dconnexion.com/

I have both a SpaceMouse Wireless and SpaceMouse Pro Wireless. It was one of the first accessories I purchased when I began using SketchUp two and a half year ago and cannot imagine 3D Modeling without one.

I model in SketchUp Pro every day and support twenty other SketchUp Pro users.

Finally!  After years of screwing around I can sort of use Sketchup.  I use a 2D Cadd program pretty much every day but could never figure out sketchup.  Thanks Miles.


The D'oh book is a freebie download avaialbe here



And the current versions of Sketchup can be found here