Layout line style control bug:

I think the best workaround, if Vector or Hybrid rendering is essential here, is to just go and hide the lower row of stacked blocks in the floor plan scene in SketchUp.

The way I have it, which I believe is very practical, if I used your method which I’ve thought of, I’d have to have two scenes. I’d need two scenes because in the main sketchup scene I’d have to render at hybrid or vector, than I’d need a dedicated seen that showed all objects hidden except the ones I want in view and choose wireframe and set that to my line style and overlay that onto the main sketchup scene. My goal is to automate sketchup and layout as much as possible, this is a manual thing required for scenes now as I’d have to do this hiding. Perhaps if I really must have these red outlines than this is the best solution that you provide and althought is manual, wouldn’t take me too long when I really think about it… I’ll give this a try and see what happens. Do you agree Anssi and am I seeing this correctly?

To reply as well to your comment. Your comment is about hiding the object in floor plan view. I don’t need to hide anything because in floor plan views, in the sketchup scene I have the floors below turned off. So when I have a layout viewport set to only show beams and columns in wireframe it still only shows the stuff on that floor which is fine for me, so I just overlay that on top of eveyrthing and I get what I want. I can’t do this in elevation views though and this is the problem, because I don’t have my tagging structure that has things hidden in the background in elevations, I have my tag structure setup so that it hides floor levels, but in the case of elevations I need it to hide the columns and beams actually behind the building and I don’t have my tags setup as columns north, columns south hidden, etc. Hoepfully now you see the problem. Therefore overlays of wireframe with the dedicated line colour work in floor plans and do not in elevations.

Now I don’t quite get it. In the file you posted, the “Beams” show as red in elevation just as the tag override you have set up commands. In the plan view with the same override the linework in the “beam” blocks is black as it is merged with the “column” blocks that reside underneath them in the model. So my interpretation was that the elevation was right, and the plan was wrong.

Sorry, you need more context as I’m discussing a different thing now. Yes you are correct about that. No confusion there.

I want to show beams and columns now in my elevation view of a home in red outline. If I create an extra layout viewport and choose the wireframe style and only show beams and columns in hopes that I can overlay that viewport onto my elevation scene (the same way I do this in my floor plan scenes where all beams and columns have a red line wireframe overlay). The problem with this is in elevation view when I’m looking at the exterior of a biudlling, I only want to obviously show the beams and columns in red outline that are actually in the view, wireframe shows everything behind. In a floor plan this is fine because I have the sketchup scene to hide the floor below and I’m happy to see columns and beams in red outline that are behind each other (on teh same floor), I don’t have to worry about seeing the beams and columns below that floor since wireframe would show me that but doesn’t becasue I have the floor below turned off. So in an elevation using the same method, it doesn’t work because my tagging strcuture hides floors, not objects behind the building. I only want to see columns and beams in red outline in an elevation view that are seen in the camera view whether close up or far back, but wireframe shows me all beams and columns behind the entire building in the entire model, I can’t turn off floors now to hide the beams and columns in the background that are not in view in my sketchup scene, so I’d have to have a tag naming system which still wouldn’t work like what, columns south wall, columns norht behind, etc. You see the problem now. Now using wireframe and showing only columns and beams in an overlay for elevations doesn’t work because it shows me all the beams and columns in the entire view of which the tags are turned on for when I only wnat to show an overlay with the stuff that is in view. In floor plan when beams and columns are on top of each other, since for me they should both have red outline, I have no problem with this, it shows red over red lines which is fine… It might seem like I’m making this complicated but I definteily am not, there is just no style that will do this for me… Simply I want to outline beams and columns in my plans for floor plans and elevations. This works fine to use an overlay in floor plans since I hide the floor below. It does not work in elevations because it shows me everything behind when I only want to outline the stuff I can see in the elevation view in red so an overlay doesn’t work here.

Answering to your hiding method. I’ve just tried the hiding method. I like to think in the long term, that being said, when I think about this hiding thing for specific scenes I can see it working a lot of the time. However when it comes to an object that is in an elevation view partly and part of it is for example behind a building and hidden, the problem then is if I hide everything else and I assign this wireframe red line overlay, I’ll get the object in the view that is showing partly but in the overlay I’ll see the entire object because I can’t just hide half of the object that isn’t showing or wahtever amount isn’t showing. If it was a simple object sure, I could use a section for that object, (tiresome) but either way if it was a complicated object I can’t just use a section to hide the part of the red wireframe that I don’t want.

The point being that sketchup layout currently does not offer any practical way to use line style control when it comes to highlighting objects in different colours than the rest of the context in a drawing.

Mark you ask how line style is working (it’s literally useless for me where I want to outline different objects with colour, not fill by using colour by tag, that’s too much colour, I want to outline the linework and I can’t find any solution to this and I’ve dove deep on it for days now). So the answer is it barely works at all. Maybe for some people, but certainly not in simple cases like mine if you are creating residential construction drawings or construction drawings of any kind which should have colour coordinated line work in my example.

You guys have made a feature that essentially is just a tease. Understand when reading this post the difference between floor plans and elevations. I think honestly the people at sketchup and layout need to know more about construction documents since there are so many people who use sketchup and layout for construction documents. If I was making this feature I most likely would have found this out, therefore I feel it’s important that when you are designing a feature for the public that you have people on your team who understand the lines of work that many of the users use the program for, construction being one of them specifically construction documents. I can’t imagine @JustinTSE @Sonder will have a solution to this or @Matt but would love to hear it if one exists… Frustrating. I just want to highlight things in different colours, ha…

This is useless in my case. I also think that my case is a very simple request on the surface, something I can see a lot of designers and architects wanting to do, which is why this is frustrating. The feature doesn’t work to colour lines without a ton of problems. @Mark , @colin

Can you give the least number of steps I can do to reproduce the problem?

Hey Colin, I’m happy to have a screen share with you to show you the problem more specifically to save you time if you’re going to try and reproduce this. Let me know when you have the time, you can direct message me. Otherwise, the file and very simple example is attached and already ready to go at the very top of this post for you to checkout. The problems however go beyond just what I’ve shown, the line style of colouring lines is extremely hard to get to work for most workflows, most workflows I imagine it will not work, which is the problem with teh new line style control.

@paul.mcalenan @DaveR @JQL @gsharp @Sonder @Matt @simoncbevans

I want to help some designers out with what I’ve learned: Keep in mind that my process here being almost entirely automated means that I don’t have to setup any scenes in my layout or align them at all, they are already setup and linked to a sketchup template scene file @DaveR , thanks dave for that tip.

**What are your options with the new line style control in Layout?

Here I share my process and at the bottom there is a video response to how I do some of this, also attached plans where I just slapped in symbols and stuff to make it look mostly complete but it’s just for show right now, not a real plan:**

I still have to tweak a bit of my style as you see in the plans I need to fix some of the thicknesses of the black dashes to blend better and to also show up better. But essentially I’ve been through the rabbit hole to figure out most/all of the possibilities for a construction document creator of construction projects to see what my options are with the new line style control in Layout. It is not easy and there are very few options when it comes to using overlays that have solid fill objects in them. Also important to note that even if you figure something out in floor plan views, it might not work at all in elevation views because of the way things are hidden by floor and not by objects behind for example, there is no practical way to make an objects behind tag to hide certain things in teh background of an elevation view when using a wireframe viewport. I’ve found this out the hard way, therefore wireframe does not work for me to highlight my beams and columns in red as you see, so I had to use a colour by tag option where there is a red fill for my beams and columns seen in the video in my black and white dimension colour by tag views.

My entire process is almost fully automated and I think personally pretty bullet proof from everything I’ve seen of construction document designers that use sketchup. Most of the reason I say this is because of how automated almost my entire process is. I could be wrong, but I find this workflow super easy with very little work required to produce cd’s and I love it. Now I can just focus on modelling. I’m going to be releasing a course about this and my methods soon. Stop manually doing things, automate as much as possible when making CD’S for your local municipality/builder.

I share my style process in the video link below. I’m very pleased with this and I hope this really helps some designers out there. I’ve learned so much for free and I want to pay it back with this post. I think this is a beautiful style and I’ve tried to summarize what I did to get this to happen. Keep in mind as you do your own style some of the comments in my video and the fact that there are a good amount of problems present that need to be overcome when trying to use viewports in layout to control line styles besides of course dashed lines which are mostly fine. One big example problem is what I’ve illustrated in the very 1st post of this thread where lines are broken and or not showing up. Overlaying viewports in layout for construction documents (while still keeping things automated and where the lapping of objects make real world sense, is extremely difficult to figure out what works and what doesn’t for using overlays with line style control so be warned when testing your own methods…)

Hope this helps.

Example CD Style results.pdf (1.1 MB)

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Thanks for all that effort to explain your workflow…
always valuable to see a process… a bit to absorb there so need some free time, I imagine your doors and windows are components that have a 2d with fill on top of you walls rather than typically on the floor? interesting approach…


Haha, said I’d keep it a secret but might as well say it now that you almost got it and those who read this can find out.

I just hide the roof. Now nothing is cut off, I can hide the tag say crown moulding if I want to which I just assign the callout tag to since I only have two plans callouts and dimensions I don’t need a ton of tags only specific ones and I label everything else either callout or dimension tag to show in respective plans. I make a 2d door and window symbol, done. When I need to resize a window component already made, the symbol is above the window elevated to a height where I can see all symbols in top view, than if I need to make the window wider, I use fredo box stretch and the symbol stretches with it, done and now I can snap to the right dimension in floor plan views. Thanks @Fredo6 (you’re the best).

I just reuse the symbol on new windows and doors. If I need a more complicated window, I use vali architects instant windows plugin to make some instant and beuatiful windows which is so worth teh time savings and price when you’re trying to pull in a nicer window and I just slap the symbols over top and I’m done.

@ArayaCAD Thanks, Tucker, for sharing what you’ve come up with as a workaround. (Somehow, in a very manual way, you’ve been able to automate a lot). I also started at the beginning of this thread and reproduced the issue, and read through and tested the stacking workarounds proposed. I was also impressed with the reverse section idea at first glance. Workarounds aside, there’s no doubt that there is a problem --also called out on other threads – getting styled linework across multiple tags to render as desired.

This is on our radar and I think it also affects the utility of weighted line work. I can’t weigh in, at the moment, on how difficult it will be to improve the behavior, but is definitely on the short list of problems – along with the reusability of overrides across scenes/viewports and various section plane mysteries – that undermine what we hope to accomplish with this feature… as you have experienced and concluded as well.

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Thanks Mark for your feedback, it’s good to hear your thouhgts. Cheers!

I found it a bit difficult to follow what your workflow is without the Layout file itself.

Hey Simon, I’ll try to explain here in summary:

Something I saw how anssi and i’m guessing dave r use. Viewport 1, I use a 2d objects viewport that goes on top of everything, this shows my doors, windows, etc in vector at a thinner line weight, I don’t do sections for floor plan views, I take off the roof and put the symbols above, so when I adjust a windows size, I have a symbol floating above it that adjusts automatically with it. Viewport 2, I use a dashed viewport which is a copy of the main sketchup scene, I overlay that onto everything so that it shows all objects behind nicely, if that scene is on the final floor of the building I make that viewport also have a thick red long dashed line showing the roof framing floating above. My final viewport is my colour by tag primary sketchup viewport which is the main scene you see back in sketchup. I have two types of plans, I just explained to you my “dimension” plan, I use that for structural which is beams and columns in red, very clean view. Then I have another view called callouts I show to the builder, it’s where I put all my symbols and material callouts, that scene is in full textured colour and shows all aspects of the building.

If you don’t use section cuts for plans, what do you do when you have more than one floor?

The usual problem with the kind of thing you describe (if I have understood it), is that it makes subsequent editing a right pain. You can’t just edit the SU model and have LO update it, you have to make appropriate changes in all the LO overlays. We used to have to do that kind of thing when we wanted dashed lines. Thankfully, they exist in SU now.

But without sight of your file, I may be speaking out of turn.

All windows in my model have a 2d flat symbol I’ve made that looks like a window in top view (a rectangle with a line down the middle). When I have a new project I just put in the symbol from my component library onto the new window and float it above the floor the window is on. I float the window symbol above the walls on the floor the window is on. I use sections on all elevation views. For top down views, I don’t use sections because all I have to do is hide the floor below the one I am wanting to focus on and now my dashed overlay viewport won’t show beams and columns below but just all the hidden and passing through beams and columns on teh floor I’m focusing on and my window symbols are in plain view in parallel projection mode because they are floating above the wall of the floor I’m focusing on. When I want to make the window bigger in width, I just use fredo box stretch and when the window stretches the symbol stretches with it. Now I don’t have to worry about hiding objects using floor plan sections, etc.

None of my layout overlays essentially need any editing at all between project to project, once I’ve set them up, so long as I don’t add new tags to my system, I never have to touch those layout views again or any overlays and I will always have automatic updates showing my hidden objects, etc as I make changes in the model. In that case, it is fully automated for showing hidden geometry updates, etc.

Anyways, as I am straying away from the original point of the post I’ve made here.

My big point is discussing on this post how the line overlaying makes things really tough, it doesn’t work very well, it’s not easy and if one wants to use overlays to show colour and or fill it might work in floor plans but certainly doens’t work practically in elevation views and there are just a host of problems that can come up when trying to use viewports that stack showing different colour and colour fills. I’ve explained all that in broken parts throughout this post…