SketchUp Plugins: Slice Your Model

Do you need to get slices of your SketchUp model to build a real life model? Slice it easily with this Plugin.
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A common process in my office is to design some of the buildings in SketchUp and then build physical models of them cutting the pieces with a laser machine. With simple geometry this is no problem, and it is easy to draw the outlines of the pieces in AutoCAD to send them to the laser cutter. When the Gemoetry is more complex the process requires a bit more effort.

SLICER (slicer.rb)
is a Plugin that helps doing this. The Plugin generates slices from a given 3D model and you can choose which axis you want to use for the slices to be generated.
See the following example. I used the same terrain I used on a previous post and I created slices of it every 5m.


The plugin even asks you if you want a flattened copy of your slices, which basically means that it will spread the slices on the ground plane, so you can just set a Top view and Export to AutoCAD. See the image of this other simpler model.



Of course CAD exports from SketchUp are not always very clean, so there might be some tweaking needed before using a laser cutter, but this definitely speeds up the process. To use the plugin, select a Group or Component, go to Plugins --> Slicer and then use the dialog box to configure how the slices should be created. Download the Plugin here.

Chek here how to Install SketchUp Plugins.



7 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. This is exactly what i need to do. I need to make, pretty much, a real life version of the second map. I need a terrain and i need to slice it. Using SketchUp i can get a landscape from google earth, but can i slice that? I then have to print it out and cut it all by hand. if someone could help me out with this, that would be great. Also, i am using a mac for all this

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  3. past.tense
    use the plugin, it should work out with a google earth terrain, (it might have some minor inaccuracy) but it should work as it work witht the terrain I have on the example.

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  4. Hi, I added a link to How to Install SketchUp Plugins.
    There u'll find the path to the MAC folder where to save the plugin. Check it out.

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  5. Nice PlugIn.
    We use Sliceforms in the teaching of geometry (see e.g. http://www.wsc.ma.edu/ecke/flatland/Sliceforms.html). We need these slices, but they also need to be marked with the location of perpendicular cross sections so we know where to cut the slots.
    Any chance the PlugIn could be adapted to do that?
    We'd be very interested.
    Thanks.

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  6. thanks guys! I actually just did a little research and you can also do layer effects with GIMP, which is free.
    Router Mill

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