Although AutoCAD serves as the standard CAD program in many industries there are plenty of other CAD programs in nowadays workflow and every program has its own perks. Exchanging drawings and models from one program to another is there for very common and improved drastically over the years. SketchUp is a popular CAD program and the pro version is able to import dwg's and has a few particular perks. Where there are perks there are also downsides. A lot of those downsides can be handled as long as you prepare your AutoCAD file properly before importing into SketchUp. With the 'Prepare for SketchUp' command this preparation is done in a few seconds. What does the command do:
- All layouts are erased since SketchUp doesn't support that anyway
- All external references are detached as SketchUp doesn't import them
- All hatches are erased, SketchUp doesn't support them
- Hatches in blocks are erased as well
- Explodes all polylines. Whether a shape is imported as line and arcs or as a polyline, after import you need to make them surfaces anyway. The curved parts of a polyline however will be segmented whereas an arc will stay smoothly curved.
- All entities on the same layer, except for blocks, will be placed in a separate newly created block. The block will get a unique 'pack' name. SketchUp tends to blend everything together upon import. Although both programs support grouping, groups aren't considered during import and that information is lost. Blocks are considered and will keep entities separate. So placing entities on one particular layer in a unique block will keep entities on layers separate from entities on other layers leaving your drawing clean and organized.
- The file will be purged. Because layouts, xrefs and hatches are eliminated from the file there could be blocks and layers in your file that became obsolete. Purging these elements from your drawing will result in a cleaner drawing in SketchUp with only layers and blocks in use.
- The drawing will be regenerated. This is purely for visual reasons and to make you aware of all the changes made.
It's advised to run this command on a copy of the file you want to import as a lot of information is removed from the drawing that should stay available when you want to continue to work in AutoCAD.
- Applies to:
- Prepares your drawing for SketchUp import
- sketch up, import, dwg, layout, block, external reference, xref, layer, polyline, purge,
- May not work in AutoCAD versions other than english versions
- Watch on YouTube
- You can now specify whether the command has to place entities packed in new blocks should be placed on layer "0" or should stay on their original layer. This allows you to import the drawing in SketchUp and keep drawing on layer "0" which means you don't have to change layer while drawing. It's also easier to isolate layers in SketchUp.