January 10, 2016 at 12:05 am #1349John PescodGuest
I’ve just come across your fantastic plug-in. I’m a fan of Sketchup (2016 Make) and presently working on preliminary plans for a block of 6 apartments in Belgium. My youngest daughter is an Architect and uses AutoCad, but I prefer SU. For budget planning this project I started to look for information to see if SU materials, volumes and areas could be imported into an excel file; and then ran into “Estimator.” I’ve spent a couple of hours looking at all your videos, FAQ’s etc. Providing it really works as claimed, you guy(s) have earned your place in heaven!
With your plans to add functionality for the ordering of materials from vendors for the project, you will further enhance an already fantastic product. You mentioned that there is presently no way to adjust prices in a central file/place, but rather each material or layer needs to be adjusted individually. Personally I think that having such a place/manner to control and adjust unit prices etc. needs to be one of your priorities in your update schedule.
With my limited knowledge of programming, I would think that such a file could also have a csv format and assigned to the template.
Thinking along that manner, perhaps it could be interesting to have more than one such price cost file that you could assign to a project depending on the size of the job. Usually small jobs have proportionally higher overheads so you would would need a higher margin to make the project worth while. Perhaps a couple of extra user defined (but drop-down lists) as you already have for such things as mark-ups, profit margins, taxes (but with different selectable rates as we often have to apply here in Europe) could be added.
I hope to install Estimator soon but want to wait until I have more info to input into my project to make full use of the trial period.
Keep up the great work, and I sincerely wish you every success. If I can to anything help to your guys over here, just let me know.January 10, 2016 at 12:21 am #1350
Thank you very much for the kind words. The cost tables are indeed priority one for next version. I am a custom home builder and wish I could program it myself, but unfortunately it will cost me quite a bit to add this feature. If the community supports the product, I will certainly put it back into version 2. I am launching a new takeoff tool for length, hopefully next week.
Best of luck with your project and please do not hesitate to reach out with questions and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org
John BrockMarch 31, 2016 at 12:00 pm #2281Mike CharlesGuest
Firstly I haven’t tried the software yet but I have looked with great interest to all your videos. I am quite keen to proceed with a purchase if a costing database could be achieved.
Therefore I would like to second John Pescod’s suggestion for a central database of costs. If you had multiple assemblies with some of the same products ie. say cement – currently it appears you would need to update the cost in all of the assemblies created. With a central database it would be helpful to update the cost once so all assemblies with the updated cost would update at once. I hope this makes sense. Are you any nearer to creating something of this nature?
MikeMarch 31, 2016 at 3:56 pm #2283
Thanks Mike – It is still certainly my priority. I have outlined the steps and features I wish to incorporate. I am still paying for the initial version and need to save for new version, which will be a considerable modification. I will keep you posted though and thank you for the inquiry.
JohnMarch 31, 2016 at 6:52 pm #2291Mike CharlesGuest
Thank you John for your response
After viewing the area take off tool video. You show taking an area of a roof on a 2d plan. Are you able to set the roof pitch in degrees? Also can you confirm the use of the area tool versus the estimator plugin? I’m assuming this is for taking off 2d plans without having to build a model? I’m keen to be able to estimate both 2d plans as well as 3d
I noticed the length take off tool is included with estimator – Is the area tool also included?
You mention Profile Builder quite a lot. Can I assume estimator is fully functional without Profile Builder or do I need to purchase PB as well?
Is there any way of finding a cost item from the estimator interface without arrowing across through various other items ie. like a dropdown list or a side listing of items within the main heading
MikeMarch 31, 2016 at 7:12 pm #2292
In a 2D roof takeoff, I use the area (either using Takeoff_Area or assigning cost data to a Material in Estimator) and then in Estimator, I use a multiplier to convert the area to the sloped area and then assign pricing to this area. For 3D roofs, I just use the area of the actual sloped faces (via Materials in Estimator) – so, to answer your question, I use two different methods depending on whether a 2D or 3D takeoff.
Takeoff_Length is free to Estimator customers – the reason I created it was the only way I could get accurate length data in my models was to use Profile Builder – while it is generally the most common way I do it, Takeoff_Length gives me much more flexibility to not have to carefully model everything. Both work – NO, you do not need PB2 for Estimator to work, simply a great companion tool – I use it to model so many different items (framing, trim, etc.) AND get takeoffs in addition.
Takeoff_Area has a free trial but is $25.
Regarding finding a cost item from the interface – Estimator is real-time and reports the results of whatever is selected in SU. So, you have to have a selection in order to view costs. I am working on some other ideas for this for future, but for now it is how I want it handled. I like to be able to view costs for various phases or purchase orders (like a scene with my various framing packages per level) – when I want the total costs, I simply pick everything, check “include quotes” and “include margin”
Hope this helpsMarch 31, 2016 at 7:26 pm #2293Mike CharlesGuest
Great thank youMay 31, 2016 at 7:38 am #2606Mike CharlesParticipant
Is it possible for the unit drop down list in takeoff area and take off length be altered to default to m2 or m rather than sqft or better still customized by the user?
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