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Selecting Edges and Surfaces with the Select Tool

Now that you've mastered drawing surfaces and are working with 3D objects, it's time to see how to select edges, surfaces, and objects using the Select tool.

Knowing how to select edges, surfaces, and objects is important for many actions in SketchUp, because you often have to indicate to SketchUp just what item you're working with. For example, when you want to make a copy of an object, you start by selecting that object. Selecting an object brings it to SketchUp's attention by telling it just what item you're working with. When you want to use the Move tool to pull out an edge from an object into 3D, you start by selecting that edge.

When you select an object, SketchUp indicates your selection by drawing it in a slightly different color than it was before, or by making it appear dotted. After you've selected an item, you can use that item as the target of your following operations, as we'll see. For example, if you had three boxes and wanted to make copies of only one, you'd start by selecting the box you want to make copies of, and then the appropriate menu choices to copy the item, as we're going to see in this lesson.

Selecting surfaces and edges is easy. Just click the Select tool in the Getting Started toolbar (recall the Select tool has an arrow as its icon, and is the first tool on the left in the Getting Started toolbar), and click the surface or edge you want to select.

When you select a surface, SketchUp fills the surface with blue dots.

When you select an edge, SketchUp colors it blue.

Selecting an entire object is also easy, because the Select tool lets you draw selection rectangles automatically. Just press the mouse button outside the object and drag the mouse over the object to draw a selection rectangle, as you see in Figure 5.15.

Figure 5.15

Figure 5.15 Drawing a selection rectangle.

When you release the mouse button, the entire object will be selected (and you can use menu selections to copy it, move it, and so on), which means all its surfaces will be dotted in blue, and its edges will be drawn in blue.

Now we know how to select edges, surfaces, and objects. Let's start putting that knowledge to work in the next task.

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