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Dovetails in SketchUp – Easier Than You Think

When I teach woodworkers about SketchUp we always reach a point where I say, “the level of detail to include in your model is up to you”. Then I explain the level that I usually work to and conclude with “but if you know what you’re doing it doesn’t take that long.” Dovetails are...

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Details and Dimensions From a SketchUp Model

One of the reasons I prefer to plan projects from SketchUp models is how easy it is to extract information from the model. In my earlier days I  prepared shop drawings with pencil and paper, and later on with a 2D CAD program. That type of drawing requires a great deal of care to...

Shaker Bench

New Workbench Build

In 2006, as I began my first round at Popular Woodworking Magazine (PWM), I was told I had to build a workbench. Even with then editor Christopher Schwarz chest deep in workbench publications, it wasn’t a mandate as much as it was a necessity. In the PWM shop, there was no usable bench empty...

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SketchUp Advantage: 3D Cutlists for Woodworking Projects

Traditional approaches in woodworking are generally reliable and efficient. If you know something has worked well for other woodworkers for a few hundreds years, you can likely assume that adopting it will be a good way to accomplish what you want to do. But the traditional approach isn’t always the best method forever, and...

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Live SketchUp Classes & Learning Resources

SketchUp, the free 3D modeling software is one of my favorite woodworking tools. It doesn’t cut joints or finish projects, but it helps me make sure the joints I cut are in the right places, and the experience building a project on the computer screen first makes valuable shop time more efficient and error...

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Use a Photo to Make a SketchUp Model

With SketchUp, you can use a photo of a piece of furniture to make a model of the piece. From that model you can develop your plans for building a reproduction. Here’s an example using the Shaker Stepback Cupboard made by Glen D. Huey for our April 2010 issue. I swiped the image off...

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What Makes a Good SketchUp Model? Components

How productive would you be in the shop if you tried to build furniture from blocks of Silly Putty coated with Crazy Glue? Imagine the mess if one board stuck to another automatically and both parts stretched and distorted if you tried to move one. This is exactly what happens if you try to...

Popular Woodworking Magazine 3D Warehouse SketchUp Models Collection

More Free SketchUp Models Added to Our Collection

It has been a while since we’ve mentioned it here on the editor’s blog,  but with the publication of each new issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine, we make SketchUp models of the projects featured in the articles available online, for free. On August 27, 2008, I uploaded the first model which was the 21st...