How to keep number of scenes, layers and size under control

I have as-built plans of a property. I keep adding information over time. Sometimes it is very detailed. For example, I recently added all the sewer lines to the plans. I created a scene to show the sewer lines and layers so that I could turn them off. I don’t want the sewer lines showing in a perspective of the property. As a result, the number of scenes and layers has grown. There are more scene tabs than can be viewed at one time at the top of the screen.

I’m wondering if anyone has ideas of how to organize drawings of this type. It seems to me that it would be convenient to have some elements as external files, rather than having everything in one drawing.

Anybody have any thoughts or experience with this?

It’s unusual to need huge numbers of scenes but let’s suppose you have a particular need.

One of the topics that raises its head quite often in the forum is the wish for a means of managing layers and scenes more easily, say by nesting them. There have been third party apps for achieving that with layers but not AFAIK for scenes. You may find it easier to look at scenes in the Scenes window (Window>Scenes) where you can at least scroll down the list and choose to show them as a list, thumbnails, etc.

It would certainly be possible to have sections of the model imported as components using external files, although whether that makes life simpler for you would need to be tested.

thanks for the reply.

One possible kludge is a separate document with different scenes or what not, then copy and paste in place your whole model to the second document as a one-way trip. After editing the original, you have to copy and paste the revised version, but that only takes a few seconds. You could organize groups of related scenes into separate documents.

I work in sketchup like I work in Autocad… XREF(references) …then I create files only with references where I get my floorplan, sections, elevations, RCP, Siteplan, etc …so I would split them and I only load what I need to load(xref’s)

That sounds very interesting. Could you describe in a little more detail how you do that?
SU doesn’t have XREF, right? So I would think you would have to insert a component, which would be a separate file. However, it would always be inserted. So how do you load what you want?
And do you keep a separate list of the files you want to load? Or is there anyway to do that within SU?

you can have a look at TIG’s XREF Manager…
it allows to load, refresh, repath, bind and delate sxp files or dwg / dxf files.
I’m not sure if this could help reducing file size and improving workability, but it displays a full list of referenced files you can easily manage from within sketchup which is what you are looking at!

This sounds great! I will try it out.

TIGs plugin is free, but there’s also a paid for one that is somewhat more powerful you could look at: Crossreference Organizer.

Can’t remember if it is available in Extension Warehouse, SketchUcation plugin store, or only direct from plugin author’s website, and not at my computer, so can’t easily check.

There’s a free trial period.

I also would like to better manage scenes & layers. I feel the interface is a bit clunky in this regard, but I’ve tweaked my settings to make it tolerable. I’ll check out the plugins mentioned in this thread.

I give both the Scenes & Layers panes their own tabs on the sidebar (sometimes pop-out window on 2nd screen) & I set Scenes view mode to List for compactness. I also set keyboard shortcuts for showing these panes (shift-D, shift-F). Another technique is to use shorthand names for Scenes, to make tabs small.

I name layers in a categorized & alphabetized kind of way (work in progress), eg. _0_FND, 1_FRM_floor_sub, 2_FRM_walls_ext. On my current project, each wall/floor/roof assembly is in its own group (drywall, framing, siding, windows, etc) so I can quickly hide the whole chunk. And each layer of the house can be toggled via Layers (eg. show all second-story sheathing), for the purpose of making Scenes or whatnot. But sometimes I’ll make the mistake of altering a whole group while forgetting that some of its layers are toggled off.

I’d like to figure out some clever way of doing separate models, or external references. For example, having a separate model for mechanical plans, because the main model is already big, laggy, & complex. @RTCool mentions copy/pasting original into revisions – what’s the most efficient way to do this? I dunno much about components, but maybe something involving replace with component?

Generally I want to learn to better synergize with components / groups / layers / outliner. And I’m curious to hear about others’ workflows.

I downloaded TIG’s XREF Manager. It looks nice. I haven’t had a chance to try it out on a serious project. One improvement I would like to see. I’d like to have a list of XREF files and be able to disable (as opposed to delete) a particular XREF. then later be able to easily enable it again.

I checked Cross reference organizer. It looks interesting. I’ll have to wait for a my next big project to test it out.

I’m working in SU the same way as described by flino. I wish SU did offer an equivalent to Xrefs in AutoCAD. It would sure make dealing with models a lot easier if they automatically updated from the “master model”. I have found that I need to be very methodical and organized and never forget to only make changes to the master model. Of course, this becomes very time consuming when you move a wall in the master model, you have to go to the other models and update vector section cuts etc. That’s another wish, that vector 2D linework gets updated automatically to match the updated model.

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