How do I put all new geometry on visible layer?

Whenever I create a new layer I’d like the next items I draw (lines, guides) to automatically be assigned to the present layer. Is there some switch to do this? I keep having to draw, assign to a layer, draw, assign to a layer and it’s really tedious.

You should not be assigning any lines to layers. Layers should be assigned ONLY to groups and components. All raw geometry should be created and left on Layer 0 (now called untagged). Layers (tags) do not separate geometry.

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First of all, you shouldn’t be drawing edges or faces using anything except Layer0. Only use other layers for groups, components, and non-geometric things like dimensions and images.

As soon as possible, you should gather edges and faces into a component or group. That way they are isolated from interaction with others. Assign a layer (tag in newer versions) to the component or group, not to the edges and faces.

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I’m having a hard time understanding the logic behind using Layer0 for all geometry. For example, I use a “Guide Layer” (my name) to place all my guides on so that I can easily toggle them on/off. If I left things on the Default Layer I’d have a ton of random geometry there that wouldn’t be neatly tucked into a layer right? I get the “group it and move it to a layer” but not everything immediately has a group ready to move.

guides are not geometry. Plus, you can go to view > guides to toggle their visibility on/off and even add a shortcut for it

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Layers, now called Tags are mainly only a visibility control. Maybe best to stop thinking about putting things on layers in SketchUp. They are given to components and groups (nothing is “on” a layer in SketchUp) while all edges and faces keep Layer 0. You need to use components and groups to provide separation.

Simple terms: leave Layer 0 active at all times. Leave Layer 0 assigned to all edges and faces. Give layers to the groups and components (objects) in your model. Using this workflow means you don’t need to be chasing layers as you model. This will prevent errors and ease your workload. When you edit a component or group to add geometry, that geometry will also have Layer 0 given to it. You don’t have any need to worry about what layer is given to the object this way.

The basis of this recommendation is that, unlike in most other apps, edges and faces in SketchUp intersect and/or stick to each other wherever they meet, regardless of what layers (tags) they use and regardless of the visibility of their layers. This can lead to unintended effects on edges and faces you thought were “inactive”. Groups and Components are SketchUp’s way of putting edges and faces into a separate container so that they can’t interact with others.

This situation doesn’t apply to other kinds of entities because they don’t intersect with or stick to edges and faces regardless of context. Dimensions, guides, images, label texts, etc. are not an issue. Edges or faces you use purely for construction purposes will be.