Is Auto Resize Viewport to Depicted Geometry Possible?



I use SketchUp and LayOut primarily for custom furniture design. In my SketchUp model, I organize details and assemblies for LayOut views with Layers and Scenes.

Once I send my SketchUp model to LayOut and work on creating all of the needed views, I find one necessary action very repetitive: manually resizing each viewport to slightly bigger than the visible, scaled geometry in the view.

My question: Does LayOut have the optional capability, inherently or through an extension, to automatically resize the viewport based on the geometry depicted within the view?

If not, I will consider submitting this functionality as a LayOut Feature Request. I believe this functionality would increase the efficiency of creating drawings, especially for 3D models consisting of many details and sub-assemblies.

As an added benefit, this functionality would be very helpful in the situation where a new Scene is applied to a viewport, and the geometry doesn’t appear within the existing bounds of the the viewport. As careful as I try to be, preparing my SketchUp model for LayOut, this happens to me fairly often.

Thanks in advance for your insights and alternative suggestions!

All the best,

SketchUp Pro 2018 on Windows 8.1


There isn’t currently an option like this but it certainly could be useful. The challenge might be deciding what the user wants to include as geometry in the viewport. At least in my work flow, I typically have more than one part displayed in a scene but I might only use a portion of the scene for a viewport. Then another portion for another viewport. This reduces the number of scenes in SU and makes it all easier for me to manage but it would be problematic if the viewport was automatically sized to fit the geometry on screen.


Hi Dave, thanks for your quick response. I agree that if this functionality was added, it would need to be at the user’s option, perhaps on the right-click context menu, not automatically applied to every view.

My practice has been to use Layers and Scenes to isolate one instance of each detail I need to detail, so i would use it on nearly every view I create in LayOut.

Since you said this functionality certainly could be useful, I’m encouraged to submit it as a LayOut Feature Request.



Ooh. That sounds like a lot of work to me. Different workflows for different folks. :wink:

Please do.


I just edited the category of my OP to LayOut / Feature Request. Thanks for your encouragement!

Considering your workflow, would I have to create an exploded view of my 3D model and rotate all the details into one plane to take advantage of your methodology for creating individual views in LayOut? That might be quicker for me, based on how long it takes to prepare my 3D model for LayOut with my current method.

Here’s an example, the 3D model of the cabinet I’m working on today. This is the ISO-All Scene I created, with the addition of the X-Ray display option:


I always create an exploded view in addition to the assembled view of the model. I also place copies of components to create 2D views. Here’s an example.

The assembled view of the project.

The exploded view.

An overall view of the model space.

The legs placed for the 2D views. The two back legs are the same, just mirrored but the front two are different so there are three legs shown.

One of the other scenes showing the dog plank, front apron and the breadboard end with the details for the wagon vise.


Thanks for the illustrated explanation of your workflow, Dave. I’m going to try your methodology on my next project, a multi-drawer cabinet for my brother. I can see doing these extra arrangements in SketchUp will make working in LayOut much more efficient.

I use mirrored instances of components a lot, too. I always create the left hand instance of a mirrored component (left and right sides of a cabinet, for example), move/copy it to the right hand instance location, and then right-click flip along the appropriate axis. Editing the left hand instance and then seeing the changes mirrored on the right hand instance is practically indistinguishable from magic!

BTW, as a fellow woodoworker, I love your classic woodworking bench, complete with leg and tail vises!

Thanks again for all your valuable advice, Dave, and have a great rest of your evening!


Rob, I’ll be interested to hear how it works out for you. I find it’s very easy and it reduces the amount of time spent going back to the model to create additional scenes. Of course every single part in the model is a component even if the model only has a single instance (such as the breadboard end on the right. There are actually six instances of it in the model space. Since they are all components, not a group in sight, when the inevitable changes come in, they are trivial to manage.

One note about the viewports in LO, don’t let the scenes show as modified. There’s no reason for modified scenes in viewports but when they are modified, they can cause you problems.

Thanks for the compliments on the bench. I wish I could take credit for the design. The credit goes to a professional woodworker in the Chicago area. I just did the SketchUp model and created the plans.

My favorite parts on this bench were the handwheels for the Bench Crafted vises.

I recently modified the front vise to make a leg vise to help clarify the installation instructions for a guy who is building a similar bench.

You have a good evening, too.


Thanks for the tip on avoiding modified Scenes in LayOut. Who knew? Well, I guess you did! And yes, Components are powerful. I use them as you described, too.

Are you familiar with Marc Spagnolo, aka The Wood Whisperer? He uses SketchUp for his projects, too, although not to a very detailed extent. Marc used Benchcrafted components in this Split-top Roubo Workbench project he did a while back:


If more people did they would have a much easier time using LayOut. You should come to 3D Basecamp. There’ll be more than that on using LayOut.

I remember seeing his bench. They make nice hardware.


An interesting suggestion in the OP. When you send a SU drawing to LO, you have to decide on page size. Something in the software must work out the rough scale the drawing needs to be to fit onto the chosen paper. Inevitably, we all end up changing the scale to something more standard and a viewport that is most appropriate. Doesn’t take long but it would be faster if it was as smart as you would like.


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