Section Plane depth of cut

I thought it was possible to control the depth of a section cut to eliminate unwanted background information not wanted in an elevation or section. I know you can mask it out in layout but seem to recall the ability to set the back of the section cut, maybe it was anther application.

Thanks in advance.

That’s not something associated with the native Section cuts. You can use Fog or simply add a large rectangle at the desired distance to mask the rest of the model.

That is the solution I have been using. I thought a saw somewhere where you could adjust the back of the section cut and move it, might have been Revit. Thanks for the quick response.

You could use a couple of different section cuts with each facing in the opposite direction. Here Section 11 is in the model context. Section 12 is inside the component containing the entire shed.

With both section cuts active.
Screenshot - 9_21_2022 , 12_44_52 PM

And the resulting elevation.


That’s how I used to do it. Sections facing each other 1/8" apart.

Now I use the Donley method.

Could you explain the Donley method please? and is it possible to add colour to individual faces using the Donley method?

I current use ‘Create Group from Slice’ for all of my section details, but the big drawback is that they are not dynamic.

TIG’s Section Cut Face allows for adding individual materials. They can be dynamic to update with changes to the section plane location.

Thank you Dave. :+1:

I will be intrigued to learn about the Donley method and whether TIG’s Section Cut Face is compatible with it.

Would love my section cuts to be dynamic.

The “Donley Method”. Is fully dynamic and does not create line work like group from slice or section cut face and it is fully native.

Basically you set all tags color to be 100% transparent. You then create a style that checks the “color by tag” box. You then also can set the section face to any color- not material. You can create different style to have different colors. What this does is creates a section cut only at the section plane. I use two different styles, one that captures the main structure and is set to a dark gray and one that captures windows, doors, trim and cabinets that is set to a light gray. Both are saved as separate scenes in SU. These are rendered in Hybrid in LO and stacked over the raster viewport. It’s fully dynamic so any change in the model updates in LO. I use templates so you don’t actually have to stack them, since all the viewports are preloaded in LO with a proxy model…so very fast.

The only downside to this method is LO cannot dimension to the hybrid sections since there are no endpoints to register (at the section cut), so you do all dimensioning to the raster view which I have always preferred anyway.


Thank you very much for such a comprehensive reply :+1:

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Hopefully it made sense. I was on my phone away from my computer so had to do it by memory (which mine is getting worse every year).

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I add a ‘white out plane’ to my drawings when I need to isolate the section.

For architectural work I usually paint this as a percentage of white to create a ghosting effect.

For shop drawings I fill this solid white to isolate only the relevant structural work:

I will have to try out the Donelly method on my next small architectural project.



Don’t you have a video that explains your process? I seem to recall watching a video about this process.

Sorry I do not. It will be featured in our next book.

Beautiful drawings as usual Mike!

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Thanks Nick!
Enjoy BaseCamp!

Thanks this is very helpful and interesting. Do you manage those planes with tags?

Yes, have tags for various directions of cut where the planes go.

This is what I do too. In complex drawings the background plane can be modeled to selectivelly choose what you want to see.

@mballes If you use section cut faces and organize each section cut face by layer, you can edit the section cut face and insert the mask in the section cut face group. Just don’t use auto update or the mask will disappear.

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