Keeping geometry separate

I create a group, and assign it a layer, but only partial segments of the group saves to that layer.
It’s fragmented. Could someone please tell me what am I doing wrong?

Also, how can we keep layers separate - or, how can we do work without it affecting other layers? Is there a way to protect or lock them? Even after grouping and assigning layers and turning them OFF, I still get messages that the work I am doing is affecting another layer. Shaded areas appear to overlap parts of layers I have turned OFF. I hope I’m making sense … I’d really appreciate help.

Post deleted by author

rule of thumb:

  • only move groups and components to other layers
  • always work on Layer0
  • Layer only control the visibility and never separate geometry

Thanks. So how can I keep the geometry separate?

Use groups and components to organize, isolate, and protect raw geometry. Geometry can touch a group or component without sticking to it, but the mouse pointer still snaps to points inside the group or component.


By the way: your original post’s title embodies a fallacy you should recognize: Layers are separate insofar as their function. Layers have nothing to do with geometry sticking to other geometry. Geometry will interact the same way whether or not layers are present. The post should have been titled, “Keeping geometry separate.”

Thanks. But creating groups and components (and further, assigning them to layers) does not seem to fully isolate the geometry. Because even when I do that, messages still show that the work I am doing is affecting geometry on other layers. Shaded or partially shaded areas of geometry on ‘hidden’ layers appear on the layer I am currently working on as well.
In this regard, layers (with groups and components) do not appear to be fully separate, or isolated.
What am I missing here?
How can I fully separate/isolate/protect the layers with their groups and components?

In that case, you’ve still got raw geometry on your layers.

Hidden or softened geometry shows as “partially shaded” when View > Hidden Geometry is toggled on. This has nothing to do with hidden layers, the contents of which don’t show even when View Hidden Geometry is on.

I think you’re unwilling to let go of your preconceptions about layers, and you have not systematically implemented the advice you’ve gotten here. I assure you, isolating geometry in groups or components does not work sometimes. It always works.

You must keep your model well organized and free of stray or unaccounted-for geometry from the very outset, or it can just get away from you. Once you’ve contaminated your layers with raw geometry, you must be ruthless to get the situation repaired. You must drop everything down to Layer0 and start methodically reassigning layers to groups and components only.


Does SketchUp Support Layers? — SketchUp Help

Thanks again. What is meant by ‘raw’ and/or ‘softened’ geometry?

Thanks. This helps. The video provides a good basic explanation. I must have stray entities on layers - Gully’s points are well taken.

“Raw geometry” consists of edges and faces. An edge is a line, and a face is a thin, thin skin stretched across a set of coplanar edges that form a closed loop. When an edge crosses another edge, they cut each other, and all the pieces stick together. When an edge crosses all the way across a face, it cuts the face. When two faces cross, nothing happens until you select them and apply the Intersect Faces command, whereupon they cut each other along the intersection.

SU raw geometry–edges and faces–is flat and straight. There are no true curves (or arcs or circles). These forms are all simulated by straight-line segments butted end-to-end. There are no curved surfaces either: these are simulated by a network of flat facets approximating the shape of the curved surface.

The edges between facets are “softened,” which is similar to “hidden.” Softened edges do not show up as lines, but they do appear like creases across the surface under certain lighting conditions, so the faceted appearance is still evident. The “creases” are eliminated by “smoothing,” which smoothly blends graduations in light and shade across the entire surface instead of changes in surface shading appearing suddenly (like creases) at the invisible edges. Softening and smoothing are both controlled by the same dialog.


Thanks very much for your explanation. This also helps. Stray edges or entities must be made into groups or components.

Get rid of 'em.


1 Like

That and experimenting with simple models can help you understand how it works.
You really need to understand Groups and Components in SketchUp before you delve into Layers.
Perhaps the Layers article will make more sense if you watch the Components video first.

Then consider this:

Containerizing (grouping) geometry into Groups and Components is essential to success with SU.
Otherwise, even a simple model becomes an unmanageable tangle of sticky raw geometry.

A Layer is merely a visibility attribute assigned to a Group or Component.
Layers are not essential to most modeling endeavors as once geometry is within a Group or Component you can easily toggle the view of the rest of the model on/off as needed while editing a group.
Like so…

1 Like

Most importantly, never ever change the “active layer” away from layer0.


Gully -
On another note, I’m having trouble connecting one group to another. Specifically, I want to set a chair directly on the floor plane. But I’m finding it goes through the floor. Is there a way to make it ‘snap’ to the floor plane?

I find that grabbing by a corner that is supposed to intersect (like at the end of a leg) will help it snap to a floor. You might also try orbiting around, to get a sense of where you are spacially.

Invest some time in componentś property ‘Glue to’.

A component that has this property will have its local origin snap to the face it is placed on.
Also its local Red/Green plane will align perfectly with the face you put the component on.

In other words:

  • make your components (chair, table, cabinet, etc.) a ‘Glue to’ components.
  • be sure to have set the correct gluing plane for each component.

They’ll not sink trrough the floor plane when placing them, provided that their gluing plane and orientation is correct.

1 Like