How to add a group without changing existing scenes


I have a model of kitchen cabinets with 50 scenes that I’ve used to dimension everything in layout. Now I have a problem that if I create a new group, it seems like I need to go and update every scene to not include that new group.

I have read a bunch of posts about how I should be using Tags instead of Groups in scenes, but I don’t understand how I could do this with my cabinets. I have the following structure
Cabinet name (e.g. Peninsula)
----> Material (e.g. 3/4 Plywood)
---------->Components (e.g. side)

Then for each cabinet I have a set of views such as:

  • Angled perspective view
  • Top View
  • Front View
  • Front view without doors and drawer fronts
  • Close ups on specific components, e.g. a single one of the 3/4 plywood pieces with routing dimensions
  • Close ups on specific joinery details

Each of these views has different groups selected to show the appropriate view of the cabinets

Is there any way I can create a new cabinet without having to update all of my existing scenes? Or could you point me to something to explain how to use layers to manage all of these scenes?

Thank you!

I think you misunderstood what you read. You should be creating groups or components of the cabinets in your model. Then give the cabinet a tag to control its visibility in the scenes.

If you need to create a new tag for the new cabinet group/component, using the native Add Tag feature will create a tag that is visible in all existing scenes. You can use Auto Invisible Tag from the Extension Warehouse to create a tag that is set to be hidden in the existing scenes. Then you can turn it on for the scenes that need to show the object.

Again, tags in SketchUp are used mainly to control the visibility of groups and components. Note that ALL edges and faces in the model should be created and left untagged. Only groups and components get tags. Untagged should be left active at all times. Once you’ve created the tags and given them to the groups and components in your model, you can use them to determine what you show in each scene as needed.

Thanks for the quick reply.

That description matches what I’ve read, but I’m not sure what my tag structure should be. It seems like I’d either need to create a tag for every single component in my model, or I’d need to create a tag that corresponds to every single scene in my model.

I have Auto Invisible Tag installed. Even with this extension, I have the problem above with configuring my tags to show specific components or combinations of components to create the dimensions drawings.

Please advise how to set this up.

Thank you!

It depends on what you need to show and how you need to show it. My guess is thatyou could simplify the modeling process and reduce the number of scenes you need to start with. It’s hard to say without seeing your .skp file.

It might also make more sense to split your model into several files and for some things like detailed views of parts you might consider making some “canned” models you insert into LayOut to show them. For example, how many different ways do you build drawers? I’ll guess they are generally all built the same way. Overall dimensions for the drawer boxes might come from a list or table instead of creating dimensioned views of every one of them.

Hi, this is the critical part of my post to quote and respond to

Simplifying the model is not that straightforward. It’s not like I am creating a scene for every drawer, I’m creating scenes for each custom cabinet from a few different angles, and showing the unique parts of each one.

I attached my sketchup file here so you can see all the scenes. Please respond to the quoted part above about how to do this without needing a tag for each scene or a tag for each component.


cabinet grouping issue.skp (4.7 MB)

I may be slightly begging your question here, but the first thing that strikes me (as someone who has designed kitchen cabinets) is that you are producing far more scenes than I would have thought necessary. That is, if you just need to show a joiner, say, what is wanted.

Second thing is that you have divided up your cabinets in an odd way. I would have expected units that repeat, like the high level double cupboards, to be made as components and then just repeats. That would immediately reduce the number of individual units that need to be shown in detail.

A minor point is that you have wrapped up all the units in one group and then wrapped that in another. So you have to navigate down two levels before you even start getting to the cabinets. I would find that a bit annoying when working on the drawing but maybe that’s just me! Similarly, I would turn off scene transitions, especially if I had that number of scenes to navigate.

I don’t see much wrong with your use of tags in something as simple as a set of kitchen cabinets.


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Thank you dezmo! That is exactly what I was looking for. It seems like the copying the group while it is hidden in the outliner, then when you paste it back in it is still hidden in the other scenes.

I had to watch the video a few times, so here are the steps for anyone else trying to follow that.

  • Select a scene
  • Add a scene
  • Make a new group
  • Hide everything in the outliner
  • Select the new group in the outliner
  • Cut the new group
  • Paste new group in place
  • Unhide new group
  • Update scene

@ simoncbevans. I know these cabinets are custom so they don’t repeat as you’d expect. However, they will perfectly fit the space, and I’m building them myself, so it’s really no extra effort to make them the perfect size.

I had the cabinets wrapped in two groups because they were living inside a larger model of the house. So they are inside the 2nd Floor and Kitchen Groups respectively. After your question and reading about referencing a model, I just moved them to a separate file and imported the cabinets into the house design.

I was then able to explode the 2nd Floor group. However, I don’t know how to explode the Kitchen Group in the Cabinets model without having to update all the scenes again. Is there a similar trick with copy/pasting that could get around this without doing it scene by scene? It isn’t really a big deal though to have an outer group.

Also, when I relinked my layout file to the new Cabinets file, about half of my dimensions turned red in Layout and I had to right click and select Reconnect To Model. This fixed most but not all of the dimensions. Is there a way to force all dimensions to Reconnect to Model? I don’t understand why they would get disconnected when I didn’t make any changes other than moving the cabinets to a different file and relinking layout.

Thanks again!

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