Next weekend I will be in Birmingham, Alabama as a guest of the Alabama Woodworkers Guild. On Friday evening, April 8, 2016 from 6-9pm I will be conducting a Woodworking With SketchUp workshop. This special event is open to the public as well as guild members. Here is a snippet from the announcement:
SketchUp is free 3D modeling software, and the ideal tool for woodworkers to design, plan and problem-solve any project. SketchUp runs on both PCs and Macs. Join expert SketchUp trainer and woodworking author Bob Lang for this evening introduction to woodworking with SketchUp.
In this presentation you will learn the secrets of modeling efficiently and accurately. When you plan your work in SketchUp, you will head to the shop with all the information you need to build your next project. Your time in the shop will be more rewarding because the experience of modeling virtually duplicates the process of building in the shop.
Bob’s computer screen will be projected and you can follow along as he demonstrates how he uses this versatile program to design, problem-solve and plan any woodworking, furniture or cabinet project. No matter what level of experience you have with drafting, planning or using computer aided design software you will come away from the evening with an appreciation for the power of SketchUp and new techniques that you can use on your own computer.
I will be walking through the process I used to prepare for the woodworking demonstration on Saturday and Sunday, where I will build the cabinet in the middle of the image to the left. The image is actually a screen capture from my SketchUp model. The cabinets on the left and right are historical examples of Gustav Stickley furniture.
This is a common design problem; we wanted a smaller version of the classic Harvey Ellis design No. 700 bookcase, with some details from the No. 70 Music cabinet. In SketchUp I imported existing models to a new file then copied and changed parts to create a new design. This takes a lot less time than starting from scratch, and being able to see everything in three dimensions as I worked kept me from going off in the wrong direction.
One of the things I like most about SketchUp is that I can concentrate solely on building the model without calculating the sizes of parts, or worrying about what a finished drawing might look like. When I’m done, I can then extract whatever information I decide I need in the shop, especially things I didn’t know I would need when I started. In this case I’ll be building in front of an audience so I went through a virtual rehearsal.
I made exploded views and detail views of the tricky parts. I made notes about the sequence of operations and added text notes so I don’t have to interrupt the rhythm of building to go back and make (or repeat) design and engineering decisions when I need to be making mortise and tenon joints. If I don’t lose my printed notes, everything will be fine.
In the workshop, my computer will be projected so that everyone gets a good look at what I’m doing. It won’t be just me showing off, I will talk about the common things new SketchUp users struggle with and I’ll go through the principles of what I’m doing and why I’m doing it. I’ll be fielding questions along the way. I hope you’ll be able to join me and if you do you will leave with a better understanding of what SketchUp can do for you as a woodworker, and how you can learn to use SketchUp without much trouble.
SketchUp Woodworking Workshop
Friday April 8, 2016 from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm
at the David Traylor Workshop Studio, 430 Industrial Lane Suite 7, Birmingham, AL35211
cost of the workshop is $25, payable at the door
I will also have my SketchUp books (and print books) available at special prices for attendees.
If you feel left out that this isn’t going on in your neighborhood, you can fix that. Click my name above to send me an e-mail and we can arrange woodworking or SketchUp workshops for your group.