View Full Version : Importing Sketchup files to Revit and asigning render materials

Andrew Dobson
2009-06-04, 11:07 AM
We are having issues importing a Sketchup file into Revit and changing the materials to revit ones for rendering.

We have tried:

(1) Modelling in Sketchup using components for things like walls, then putting them on a layer and importing into Revit. If we try this method, and alter the Imported Objects material for that layer, it still renders in a default white material. This is our preferred way of working in sketchup.

(2) If we model in Sketchup and dont use components (i.e. use groups instead) we can change the materials in Revit. This is not how we generally work in sketchup.

Is this a bug/known issue with Sketchup import?


2009-06-04, 11:42 AM
Why not just model in Revit? I've created multiple proposals in hours with the program information, square footage, and many other parameters built into the model.

Sorry to not answer the question...

Andrew Dobson
2009-06-04, 11:47 AM
That is what I would usually do - I dont know how to use sketchup myself.

We have a Sketchup user who doesn't know Revit and just want me to do some renders of a model that she is going to make. I need to let her know how to model it in sketchup so that it imports into Revit in a way that I can change the materials for rendering.

2009-06-04, 05:28 PM
Teach her Revit, lol...

2009-06-04, 06:00 PM
My guess is that it isn't really a bug or issue, but more of a just the way it is. Without me really looking into it, I would think of it this way...
If you build a family in Revit, and nest in another family, but only the main family has material properties, you won't be able to control the material of the nested component.
I think that is more or less what you're getting in Sketchup. When you make something a component in Sketchup, it treats it like it's own family and needs to be edited and saved seperately, whereas, if you just group things together you can still control them natively.
So, when you import a Sketchup model with components instead of groups you are only able to modify the main model and the component portion maintains it's original settings.
So, I've a couple thoughts. One, start using groups in Sketchup. She could model everything in Sketchup in your preferred workflow (with components) and then explode the components before sending to Revit.
Two, you could bring in each Sketchup component separately into a Revit Family as if you were nesting them.
Third, use Revit. I actually prefer to model walls, windows, floors, roofs, etc in Revit (since that is what it's designed to do). In sketchup you have to group, and make components and use layers, and it can become a pretty big mess if you miss something. So once I have it started in Revit, I'll export to Sketchup and tweak and add you custom content that's easier to model in Sketchup.

2009-06-05, 10:42 PM
We were faced with a similar issue. We purchased Vray for Sketchup and it turned into a good workflow option. It's easy to port building geometry to Sketchup from Revit and quickly get decent renderings, while using the huge inventory of available "stuff" out there for the Sketchup environment. This is for early design work of course.

2010-01-13, 08:52 PM
Looks like you're looking for something to render sketchup models. In which case Kerkythea is a decent and amazingly free program that is pretty simple to use: http://www.kerkythea.net/joomla/.

Scott Womack
2010-01-14, 01:16 PM
No, the OP was asking how to get Revit materials assigned to a Sketchup object once it is imported into Revit. I am facing this issue myself, since a sketchup object was the only way I could get an elevator machine into a complicated elevator family.

2010-01-14, 01:23 PM

What you could do is to import your skp file into a mass family > finish family > create wall/ roofs etc. by face.

Check out this video:




cliff collins
2010-01-14, 04:13 PM
Or--Export to 3D Autocad from SU, import the Acad into Revit and apply materials
via Imported categories-----have had mixed results with that.



2010-01-19, 01:17 AM
I have seen the question of how to bring a SketchUp model into Revit asked on several sites. The inevitable response from some Revit user is "Why?"

Given the strengths of SketchUp as a conceptual design tool it seems only natural to want to leverage these strengths by porting what has been accomplished in SketchUp to the best available tool for design development and construction documentation, which is Revit.

The respondants to the question point out that they are able to accomplish in Revit anything that can be done in SketchUp. When one searches Google images for SketchUp and conceptual design, the results are myriad. Changing the search terms to Revit and conceptual design yields results mainly from Autodesk promotional pieces and their duplication on various sites.

If there is a question that ought to be asked, it is why this should be so.

2010-01-19, 01:31 AM

Welcome to the forums. :)

I think you may misunderstand why some of us keep asking that question in return, when faced with the question of importing sketchup models.

You *CAN* import a sketchup model, and head several ways with it, depending on what you want to do with it. If its just for show, you can manage its rendering aspects somewhat successfully through the Imported Objects dialogue. If you want it to TURN IN to Revit objects, you can import it in to a mass family, and Wall by/Roof By/whatever,

What a lot of us have found- however- is not solely a Revit limitation, but is basically a limitation anytime you mix more than one medium together. Things dont respect "replace" or "remove" the way they do "alter." So you have to methodically go bck to sketchup to edit the masses, hoping to reimport them in to masses to have them updatable for geometry done with Building Maker. Same with rendering materials.

I guess the reason i answer "dont bother," is for me its not about "can i use the skethcup model," but its about "can i use the sketchup model and be more efficient." If i cant, i can just rebuild it. The myriad of times ive tried, it was faster to remodel it in Revit.

If we disagree on Revits usefulness in SD or concept, all is well. But for what its worth, we love Sketchup for its artistic flair (though in house we argue about the validity of that flair. I find it useless, but i concede that some people here love it.) So we actually DO our concept and SD in Revit, then export out to SU just for the goofy image filters, LOL.

2014-06-18, 05:08 PM
If you have Sketchup PRO, then you can export a 3D sketchup model to a 3D autocad model by exporting it as a dwg file, but that can only be done with sketchup pro, you cannot save or export as any readable file for revit or autocad with regular free versions. Also, if you want to convert it from revit to sketchup, and the sketchup program that you have can't read dwg files, then export through revit as a dwg file, then if you happen to have Autodesk 3DS max, even if you don't know how that program works, open it up, go to the pull down option in your options in the top left hand side and go to import, then you can import the dwg file, once it's been imported, now go to the same option pull down and go to export, now you can export it to "3ds" file type, and that can be imported into sketchup and be readable.

-3D modeler and Architecture/Furniture Drafter