Uploading Models

You can upload a 3D model to 3D Warehouse using a supported version of SketchUp or a web browser. All you need is a model and an account.

Tip: Any file you upload needs to follow the 3D Warehouse content policy and the 3D Warehouse Terms of Use.

Ready to start uploading models? The following sections walk you through the steps.

Preparing a model for upload to 3D Warehouse

Before you upload a 3D model to 3D Warehouse, here's what you need to do:

  • Adjust the view, styles, and materials to reflect your desired preview image and save the model before you upload it. The preview image that appears on the model details page is based on how the model appears in the drawing area. For example, you might use the Camera tools to show the whole model from the front and check that the Style settings show off your model’s best look (such as styles that have shading and materials instead of being transparent).
  • Check your model’s file size. Models uploaded to 3D Warehouse can’t exceed 50MB. That size is pretty big for a model, but if you do need to reduce your model’s file size, try the following:

    • Splitting the model into several files
    • Simplifying your model with images by replacing complex geometry with images that convey the same idea or replacing large images/textures (such as a large TIFF terrain image) with a file type that offers compression and is optimized for viewing on screen (such as a JPEG or PNG)
    Tip: While there are different levels of detail required for different purposes, most SketchUp users favor lightweight models that don’t slow down their computer when working on larger design projects. This blog post describes how to make a great model for 3D Warehouse.

Uploading a model or component from SketchUp

You can upload an SKP file from any version of SketchUp to 3D Warehouse. This file can be an open model or a component within an open model.


Tip: Use the component option when you want to upload only a part of a SketchUp model, such as a single building from a model of a larger development.


To upload a model from SketchUp, follow these steps:

  1. Use the Camera tools (Zoom, Orbit, and Pan) so that the view in the drawing area reflects how you want the model preview image to appear in 3D Warehouse.
  2. Select File > 3D Warehouse > Share Model from the menu bar. You’re prompted to save your model and purge unused items if relevant. If you’re signed into 3D Warehouse, 3D Warehouse opens to the Upload a Model page. If you’re not signed in, enter your user name and password and proceed to the Upload a Model page.
  3. On the Upload a Model page, select your options and fill in the title, description, category and sharing setting as shown in the following figure. See the following list for details about each option and field.


    Tip: You can edit an uploaded model’s title, description, and other details anytime. All the editing options are available via your 3D Warehouse Models page.
  4. Click the Upload button. After you upload the model, 3D Warehouse renderbots generate additional file formats and thumbnail images.
From SketchUp, you can upload a model to 3D Warehouse

To upload a component within a SketchUp model, follow these steps:

  1. With the Select tool (), select the component that you want to upload to 3D Warehouse.
  2. Context-click the component and select 3D Warehouse > Share Component from the submenu.
  3. Select your options and fill in the title, description, and category fields. Whether you’re uploading a model or a component, your options are the same. See the following list for details about each option and field.
  4. Click the Upload button. After a moment, you see the model details page for your uploaded component, which is shared as an SKP file.

On the Upload a Model page, you see the following fields and options. Here’s a guide to the purpose and function of each field and option:

  • Title: If your model appears in 3D Warehouse search results, the title you enter in this field appears below the model’s thumbnail preview image. On the model details page, the title appears below the model preview. A good title is specific but brief. For example, a building’s name and location (if it has one, such as “Eiffel Tower, Paris, France” or “Flatiron Building, New York City”) makes a good title. Similarly, instead of “Wood chair” or “Bed,” add a few details to help differentiate your model, such as “Windsor-style wooden chair” or “Rustic queen bed with tree branch headboard.”
  • Description: This field enables you to provide a detailed description of your model. For example, you might describe specific features in your model. If you’re uploading a historic building, you might include a brief description of the building’s history. To add a hashtag that makes your model easy to find through search, begin by typing # and then some descriptive text. The autocomplete feature suggests useful hashtags and helps you avoid typos. To make your model easy to find you should limit your descriptions to 500 characters or less, and use five or fewer hashtags. Hashtag spam is penalized in search results.
  • Category: Click Assign Category to see a menu of categories and click Apply to assign the selected category to your model.
  • Private model: By default, the toggle is off so that 3D Warehouse users can find and download your model. Toggle this option to the On position if you want to make the model private so that it doesn’t appear in search results and isn’t accessible to 3D Warehouse users.
  • Disable Comments: Comments are disabled by default. To allow 3D Warehouse users to comment on your model via the model details page, toggle this option to the Off position.

Uploading a model via a web browser

When you upload a model to 3D Warehouse via a web browser, you can upload a SKP file from any version of SketchUp.

Follow these steps to upload an SKP file via your web browser:

  1. Point your web browser to https://3dwarehouse.sketchup.com/ and sign in to 3D Warehouse.
  2. Click the Upload a Model icon at the top of the main 3D Warehouse page.
  3. On the Upload a Model page that appears, as shown in the following figure, drag and drop the file you want to upload into the SketchUp File area. Or click the Browse button and select a file saved to your hard drive.
  4. Fill in the title, description, and category, and select your desired options, which are the same as those described in the preceding section, Uploading a model or component from SketchUp.
  5. Click the Upload button. After a moment, you see the model details page for your uploaded file.
From a web browser, you can upload a model to 3D Warehouse

Viewing and editing your uploaded models

After you upload models to 3D Warehouse, you can easily find all your uploaded models on your 3D Warehouse Models page. Simply sign in to 3D Warehouse and select My Content from the user menu. On the Models screen, shown in the following figure, you see all the models you’ve uploaded to 3D Warehouse.

Find your uploaded models on the 3D Warehouse models page

From your 3D Warehouse Models page, you can edit a model’s privacy settings and any details you provided about the model. For example, if someone commented about an issue with the model that you later fixed, or if you updated the model to add a new or improved feature, you might add that information to the model’s description.

Follow these steps to edit your uploaded models:

  1. From the Models screen on your 3D Warehouse page, click a model to view its model details page.
  2. Click the three dots below the model preview and select Edit Model from the menu that appears. You can edit any of the options and fields that you filled out when you uploaded the model, as shown in the following figure. You can also have the following options:
    • Replace the original file with a new one by clicking Browse and following the prompts to upload a new file.
    • To delete your model, click Permanently Delete Model.
    • Enter a custom URL for your model.
  3. When you’re done editing the fields and options on the model details page, click the Save Changes button in the upper right. A message appears, confirming that 3D Warehouse saved your changes.
You can edit details about a model that you uploaded to 3D Warehouse

Understanding how 3D Warehouse renders file formats and materials

After you upload a model, you may notice that 3D Warehouse renders different file types. Rendering happens automatically as follows:

  • If you upload a geolocated SketchUp model, the renderbots create a KMZ file.
  • If the SketchUp model you upload is not geolocated, the renderbots create a COLLADA file, which has a .dae file extension.
Tip: Remember that SKP files are SketchUp models, and KMZ files are models exported to the KMZ format, which works with Google Earth. COLLADA files enable you to transfer data among 3D content-creation tools. You can also export models in these file types (and more) from SketchUp.

3D Warehouse supports the current version of SketchUp plus two previous versions. So if the current version is SketchUp 2019, then users of 2018 and 2017 will be able to download your model.

The renderbots also extract the model's materials, which 3D Warehouses users can browse and download individually.

Was this article helpful?