convert any 3d model to sketchup using blender

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CONVERT ANY 3D MODEL TO SKETCHUP USING BLENDER

This article talks about how to convert 3D models to Sketchup using Blender, I’m going to use an .OBJ file, however the same principles apply to any format that can be imported into Blender for example .FBX or .3DS

First you need Blender, download the installer (.msi) and install it; or dowload the .ZIP, uncompress and run no installation required, find it here:

https://www.blender.org/

For this tutorial I will use a 3d model of the Wing chair CH445 designed by Hans J. Wenger, download it from the Carl Hansen website, inside de ZIP file you will find an .obj file

http://www.carlhansen.com/products/lounge-chairs/ch445/

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to texture the CH445 I will use a fabric texture from texturise

http://www.texturise.club/2014/03/seamless-green-fabric-texture-maps.html

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1
open Blender and go to file / import menu and select wavefront .OBJ file

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2
in the dialog select the ch445.obj file

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3
in the case of this CH445 3D model, it is out of scale, as you can see in the image having the grid as reference and knowing that every subdivision represents 1 meter, so we have to rescale it

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4
the geometry is highlighted in orage, that means it is selected (if not, press key A, to select all), then press key S to scale and type 0.01, now hit enter

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5
make sure you have Blender Render as render engine, select the seat part of the CH445 (the most common way to select an element is to Right Mouse Button)

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6
in the shading panel you will see there are 2 materials, select the ch445_seat_hallingdal_110_TNT

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7
in the textures panel select the first slot (ka.001), and choose image / source

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8
this will open a dialog to select the image texture we want to assign to the chairs seat, select the fabric texture previously downloaded

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9
the texture is not visible, choose Texture mode on the viewport shading

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10
the texture is not scaled properly as you can see in the image, jump to the step 18 if you want to correct this issue inside Sketchup adjusting the texture image scale in the sketchup material editor if you want to correct the UVs scale inside blender continue to step 11

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11
to correct the UVs scale we need to open a new view panel, look in the corner and drag up the viewport handle

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12
in the Editor selection menu choose UV/Image Editor

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13
it should look like in the image

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14
switch to Edit Mode using the mode menu or use the keyboard shortcut:TAB

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15
browse image to be linked to the UV/Image Editor, choose hal110.png

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16
hover the cursor over the UV/Image Editor and hit A to select all, hit S key to call the scaling and type 2, hit enter

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17
switch back to the Object Mode using the mode menu or using the keyboard shortcut: TAB

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18
hit 2 times the A key to select all

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19
go to file / export menu and choose Collada (Default) (.dae)

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20
choose a location and a name for the DAE file, make sure to tick the boxes as in the image, hit the export collada button

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21
now open Sketchup, and choose import from the file menu

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22
choose the CH445 collada file and hit the import button

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23
insert in the origin point

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24
I added 2 planes that are going to act as light emitters in my render engine inside Sketchup

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25
run a render test, our 3D model looks faceted and not soften

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26
to soften edges use the AMS soften edges plugin for sketchup

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27
raw render, rendered with Maxwell Render for Sketchup

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That’s all, thanks for reading this article and hope you will find it helpful.

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About hdz arkitektur

Victor Hugo Hernandez is an architect specialized in architectural visualization, member of the Swedish Association of Architects (Medlem i Sveriges Arkitekter), based in Lund, Sweden. Currently working for Malmö based architectural practice [reform] arkitekter.

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