How to Change Measurements in SketchUp

How to Change Measurements in SketchUp

SketchUp is an incredible tool for interior designers, architects and even individuals passionate about 3D design but knowing how to use the tool efficiently and correctly are essential to get the most out of the software. Resizing in SketchUp is one of those essential skills and knowing how to use SketchUp to change measurements or edit dimensions is something that we should all know. 


To answer how to change measurements in SketchUp, we will look at the different methods you can use to make your designs even more accurate.

Setting up a SketchUp Template

You may want to start by setting up a SketchUp template. Most templates will define a model’s default settings which includes things like the unit measurements. Templates include all the settings in the Model Info dialogue box with elements such as Style settings and Shadow settings. 


If you are looking for high accuracy, you can create a template that uses more granular measurement such as millimetres which can be used for larger scale applications in interior and exterior design. 

Depending on your requirements, you can create templates and customise these as much as you need them to be.

To create a template is very simple: 


  • Create a new SketchUp file with the current template
  • Make all the modifications you want to save with the template
  • Select File > Save as Template 
  • Save your template in a location where you can easily access it
  • Give the template a name
  • Click Save


Settings in the Model Info Window

You can set up the Model Info Window in the dialogue box where the settings are made for the entire model. Here, templates which are using the settings for the template can be made here. 


If you want to access the dialogue box do so by: 


  • Select: Window > Model Info
  • This is where the units and the precision are set. I.e. Inches and 1/16”
  • Precision settings are selected from the drop down list. 
  • When using inches the highest precision setting appears to be 1/64”

How to Scale and Resize in SketchUp

Sometimes we can get carried away with our designs that we forget to scale the image correctly. Luckily there is a tool in SketchUp that makes it easy to scale and resize entire models or parts of the models without spending too much time doing so.

There are two tools you can use, depending on your requirement. One is the tape measure the other is the scale tool.

The tape measure tool allows you to scale your entire model but, when you want to scale a part of a design or even a singular surface, the scale tool is best. (Note: you can still use the measure tool for the latter.)

We will look at both of these tools and where you can use them. 


Scale an entire model with the tape measure tool

  • Select the tape measure tool
  • Click either end of line for which the measurement is required to change
  • Enter the newly defined dimension


Scale a selection proportionally

  • This can be achieved using either the tape measure tool or the scale tool
  • You can use both tools to select an area and rescale the measurement. I.e. a room maybe 15 feet wide but the rest of the floorplan can be the same as designed.
  • Select the element you want to scale > type the desired dimension in the “length” box in the bottom right corner > hit enter
    This will resize the whole model. If you don’t want to do that you need to create a group.
  • Scaling can be done as a percentage. (Note:  in the Measurements box, you see a scale of 1.00, which means your geometry is at its original size or scaled to 100%. Or you could simply input the scale you want to see the measurement at, i.e. 50% of full size.) Your Dialogue box will give you the information you need.

Scaling one or more dimensions

  • You can use the selection tool to select the specific geometry for which measurements are required to be changed
  • With the Select tool, select the geometry you want to scale
  • Click an edge or face grip on the object
  • Move the cursor to scale the entity
  • Click to set your selection’s new scale
  • The scale tool can be used to make the required changes allowing revised dimensions to also be entered

Scaling components

  • Scaling a component works like every other scaling procedure mentioned
  • The difference with scaling a component is that you can resize a single instance of the component or all component instances in your model
  • For example, you could have a house design where the front door needs to be scaled, leaving all the other dimensions the same
  • Do this by double clicking on the door
  • The object will have a dotted line around it
  • Use the measure or scale tool to scale the new measurement

    If you want to check the dimensions of your object before making any changes to the size or the scale, you can use the SketchUp Dimension tool. By selecting two points and moving away from the object, the display shows the measurement in an annotated form so you can clearly see what sizes you are working to. 

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Elmtec have been the UK distribution partner for SketchUp since 2010, and service a network of UK and Irish resellers. We have over 22 years’ experience within the digital design community.

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