Patterned Panel + Bending Extension = Cool Candle Holder

Patterned Panel + Bending Extension = Cool Candle Holder

Now that the days are getting shorter, it may be a nice home decorating idea to create a decorative candle holder. Having the powers of SketchUp and computational design methods as well as 3D printing at our fingertips, it does, of course, make sense to create something more interesting than just a boring lampshade. This brief example uses the patterned panel exercise from Chapter 7 to create the basic geometry. Of course you can replace the sinusoidal wave pattern easily now with another beautiful function, or you could even have the cutout pattern generated based on colors in an image, which allows you to make it look like a logo, landscape, etc. Since the resulting shape needed to have the pattern cut into a curved surface, there were basically two approaches: 1) create a curved surface and place the geometry onto it by arranging it radially (and then subtracting it), or 2) creating the panels flat and then curving them. Also, this...
Read More
Using images for scaling and geometry patterns in SketchUp

Using images for scaling and geometry patterns in SketchUp

This post was actually inspired by a question in my Basecamp presentation: Could we use images to create or modify geometry in SketchUp? As it turns out, this is actually quite easy since SketchUp version 2018. This year's version of SketchUp includes a new class in Ruby, the ImageRep. Contrary to the regular Image class (which you can use to work with images as entities in SketchUp), the ImageRep class goes further and allows you to look at images on a pixel by pixel basis. This is basically what we need to be able to read pixel color values and then use those to create or modify geometry. As you can see in the code snippet below, this is reasonably straightforward once one figures out the basic geometric behavior. The code even stretches the image by the (x and y) dimensions of the selected geometry. One part that needed to be resolved was that color information in an image contains red, green, and...
Read More
Pulled Brick Design Options

Pulled Brick Design Options

I came across brick wall designs today where the architects were considering various options with pulled bricks. This design approach has been used before in many different ways but the basic principle is always the same: In a brick wall that is dominated by stretchers, you insert strategically placed headers which then protrude a little bit beyond the brick wall surface. This creates a very nice pattern with interesting shadows. The first image below shows such a design in a SketchUp model: Given that in reality these are placed manually it may be reasonably easy (and therefore not too costly) to vary the extend of their extension beyond the surface and thereby create more interesting undulating patterns. One such pattern is shown below: As it turns out, this is very easy to do by simply modifying some of the scripts from Chapter 7 and combining coding with a carefully created SketchUp model. The secret for success is having a component type (the...
Read More
Making replacement parts with SketchUp is so easy!

Making replacement parts with SketchUp is so easy!

I recently had the need to replace a broken knob on our dryer and instead of tracking down the original replacement part, I 3D printed the knob from a SketchUp model I made in a few minutes. Check out my blog post and see how I did it: https://alexschreyer.net/sketchup/dryer-fix-made-easy-3d-printing/...
Read More