Sketchup — Guide Lines Tutorial

Guide lines are infinite in length, and displayed as dotted lines. They assist us in drawing a piece of furniture, or whatever we might be drawing. In drawing a “Guide Line”, it’s drawn parallel to an existing line (That you select) already a part of your drawing.

Also if it’s more convenient, to draw a guide line parallel to an existing guide line, then you can do that.

Keep in mind that “Guide Lines” are drawn on a temporary basis, and then erased after no longer being needed.

Drawing A Guide Line
To draw a “Guide Line”, go thru the following, let’s say three step process:

  • Activate the “Tape Measurer” command by hitting the “T” key on the keyboard.
  • Position the mouse cursor on the existing line that the “Guide Line” is to be drawn parallel to, and click the left mouse button.
  • Move the “Tape Measurer” mouse cursor away from the existing line, and to the side of the existing line that the “Guide Line” is to be drawn parallel to. Now you have two options, click the left mouse button to indicate where you want the “Guide Line”, or use the keyboard to enter the distance you want the “Guide Line” from the existing line.

Example #1
The Sketch below shows a “Guide Line” drawn parallel and 5″ from Line “A”, using the three step process outlined above.

Example #2
The Sketch below was drawn, by going thru the following steps:

  • Using the Rectangle (R) command, Rectangle #1 was drawn.
  • Using the Tape Measurer (T) command, the guide line shown was drawn. The guide line was spaced 10″ from and parallel to Line #1.
  • And then Rectangle #2 was drawn as shown, using the Rectangle (R) command.

Example #3
The Frame-and-Panel shown in the three Sketches below, was sketched by going thru the steps associated with each of the following three sketches.

The following steps were used in the Sketch above:

  • First the Rectangle (R) command was used, to draw the rectangle shown.
  • Next the Tape Measurer (T) command was used to draw the five guide lines shown. Using the three-step process outlined earlier in this post.

In the Sketch above, the following steps were utilized:

  • The Arc (A) command was used to draw the arc on the bottom side of the top rail.
  • The Line (L) command was next used to draw the two vertical lines, to complete the two Stiles (Vertical wood members). And the line command was used to draw the top line, of the bottom rail.

The Sketch above shows the Frame-and-Panel, after the guide lines have been erased. To erase the guide lines, select “edit” on the menu bar (Along the top of your screen), and then select “Delete Guides” from the menu screen that pops up. All your guide lines are now erased. If you want to erase only some of your guide lines, then use the Erase (E) command and erase the specific guide lines you want erased.

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Until next time, take care