Spiral staircases are beautiful as well as practical, but they’re also very complex structures. Are you researching how to draw a SketchUp spiral staircase? Here’s everything you need to create a beautiful spiral staircase in SketchUp in a number of ways, made simple to inspire you. Read on to become fluent in the creation of spiral staircase drawings.
Creating a Spiral Staircase in SketchUp
There are several ways of drawing a spiral staircase in SketchUp. The simplest of all is to head over to the brilliant SketchUp 3D Warehouse and pick out a ready-made design. There are a number of spiral staircase choices for you, including one with a full transparent handrail, one with no handrail at all, and one with a full opaque handrail. But what if you want to get creative and draw something unique? Next, we’ll look at the other spiral staircase techniques you might like to get under your belt.
Drawing a Spiral Staircase in SketchUp Step by Step
Here’s a step-by-step guide to the basic process of drawing a spiral staircase in SketchUp:
- Create a circle.
- Choose the number of sides your circle should have, which simply defines the number of steps you need.
- Bear in mind that in this case, the radius is the width of the stairs.
- Create a segment with lines leading to two points on the radius.
- Delete all of the circle except this segment you’ve made, which represents one step on your staircase.
- Give this wedge shape depth to represent the thickness of the steps.
- Make this into a SketchUp Component.
- For a 12 step spiral, create a series of 11 copies of your wedge. For staircases with different numbers of steps, adjust the number of copy wedges you make.
- Now, move and copy the wedge to recreate the layer 11 times.
- Shift-click to select each steps in the spiral staircase.
- Hold ‘Shift’ and drag a box around the whole stack of wedges to deselect your previously selected wedges and select the remainder, the unwanted ones.
- Hit delete and all but the steps you want disappear, leaving you with a set of basic spiral steps.
- You can go back through the process to retrace your actions, adjusting things like the spacing between each step, the number of steps, their dimensions and so on.
Because you created a defined component early on, it’s a simple matter to add a handrail.
Spiral Staircase with a Central Void
It’s just as easy to adapt these basic steps and create spiral stairs around a circular central void, and the process you go through is much the same:
- Start by creating two nested circles around the same centre.
- The outer circle represents the full diameter of your spiral and the inner circle is the diameter of the central void.
- As before, make wedge shapes and delete all of them except the shape you want to keep.
- Turn your finished wedge into a SketchUp component and copy it until you’ve got the number of steps you want.
- Copy and stack the layers to make the steps then select the actual steps in the stack.
- Select the whole design, which deselects the required steps.
- Press delete to remove all the steps except the ones you want
Spiral Staircase Using ‘Memory Copy’ Extension
How about using the Memory Copy extension to make a spiral staircase in SketchUp? Bear in mind the memory copy extension is simply used to repeat copy operations. The process is much the same as the step by step method we’ve showed you:
- Create your SketchUp component for one step.
- Carry out one copy operation.
- Click ‘play it again’ to repeat the copy operation for each step.
All you’re doing is repeating the operation performed on this step component. And as before, since your steps are components, it’s really easy to add handrails.
Spiral Staircase Using ‘1001Bit Tools’ Extension
If you want to draw spiral stairs super-simply, you’ll enjoy the 1001Bit Tools extension. It’s basically a SketchUp spiral staircase plugin that includes a built-in spiral staircase option. All you do is Select ‘Create Spiral Staircase’, then enter the details and it does all the work for you. That’s it! The spiral staircase plugin extension supports a variety of common spiral staircase designs, so it’s extremely flexible as well as fast.
Get Started with SketchUp
Are you the kind of user who likes to know about every method of creating drawings in SketchUp, or are you someone who prefers to take the simplest route? Whatever your style, this guide to drawing a spiral staircase in SketchUp gives you everything you need. Why not visit our download page and download a free 30 day trial copy of SketchUp Pro to play with? You might also appreciate our vast library of training resources and tutorials. You can check out the difference between SketchUp Free and Pro here.