SketchUp Challenge - A Month Late

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Blog entry by cheller posted 11-03-2007 12:57 AM 1640 reads 1 time favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’m really late with this. August and September were very busy months, mostly related to upheaval at work. In the insanity I had trouble deciding on an inspiration and even more trouble finding the time and energy to focus on learning SketchUp. About a week before the deadline I finally came up with an inspiration. But despite my best efforts I couldn’t get it together to submit on time. The final straw was primarily mental (no wise cracks, please). I really didn’t want to use someone else’s photo of my inspiration. And the timing was wrong for me to get there to take pictures myself. I had thought I had a few, but it turned all I had was one detail.

Despite hearing the sound of the deadline whizzing past I decided to finish up the design and post it when I’d had a chance to not only finish it, but also get some pictures of my own. Here’s the result.

My inspiration is the Old North Bridge in Concord, Massachusetts. Americans will know this as the location of one of the opening battles of the Revolutionary War. The bridge was made famous by Ralph Waldo Emerson in the Concord Hymn which starts with the line “By the rude bridge that arched the flood”. The current bridge is part of the Minute Man National Historical Park.

These pictures were taken from my kayak. You’ll find more pictures from that paddle here. The river that runs under the bridge is the Concord River.
Old North Bridge

Old North Bridge

I happened to pass under the bridge as a tour was crossing the bridge. According to the tour guide the original bridge was narrower and had a shallower arch, but the construction is basically the same.

Here’s the table inspired by the bridge. Basic dimensions are 68” x 42” x 29”. Woods would be oak and walnut. Mostly mortise and tenon joinery. Breadboard ends on the top. I have no current plans to build this, although two of the people who read my personal blogs have volunteered to take it off my hands if I do.
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The biggest challenge I had in creating this in SketchUp came from the curves. Never did figure out how to create a mortise in a cylindrical leg. The SketchUp model isn’t perfect but it definitely shows what I want it to show.

-- Chelle

7 comments so far

View Peter Oxley's profile

Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 4433 days

#1 posted 11-03-2007 01:11 AM

That is really great! You obviously put a lot of thought and effort into it. The design recalls the features of the bridge without looking like a bridge. Great job!

-- -- --

View SPalm's profile


5334 posts in 4441 days

#2 posted 11-03-2007 01:42 AM

That is really sweet. I second what Peter said.


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 4658 days

#3 posted 11-03-2007 06:03 AM

That is nice work. You just learned Sketchup? I really am impressed.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View cajunpen's profile


14578 posts in 4624 days

#4 posted 11-03-2007 06:39 AM

Very impressive. I’ve been struggling with Sketchup for awhile now and you are obviously head and shoulders above my abilities. Good job.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased."

View cheller's profile


254 posts in 4668 days

#5 posted 11-03-2007 06:52 AM

Thanks all. Yes, I’ve just learned Sketchup. I do have quite a bit of experience with computers (I pay the bills by working as a computer geek) and with graphics programs – I got an A in an architecture class 20 odd years ago because I’d mastered MacDraw. What you can’t see from these pictures are the points where things don’t fit together exactly cleanly.

-- Chelle

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 4433 days

#6 posted 11-03-2007 12:53 PM

Great job. I, like others, am struggling to get a handle on SketchUp. I am hoping to find it useful for design “some day”.

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 4719 days

#7 posted 11-03-2007 04:39 PM

Well done!

You demonstrate the real purpose of the LJ challenges: personal growth. Deadlines don’t stop skill development and prizes don’t create it either. My hat’s off to you!

Love the table and the inspiration picture.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

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