Simple stuff not working

Attached is a screenshot of some dimensioning done in layout. After “reconnect to model” some dimensions are no longer red, but connects to nothing, and are not really updated. For some other dimensions I have reconnected them manually by moving their anchors, but they still show as not updated.

Can we please have a Layout version that does some simple things right, where I can import a drawing, scale it and dimension it, and not a Layout that does all sorts of things halfway. I don’t need to rotate my dimensions (why would I ???), and I don’t need fancy presentation tools. I need the very basic things to work.

It would be interesting to see your LayOut file with the disconnected dimensions. There’s likely a solution.

What version of SketchUp/LayOut are you using? Please complete your profile.

here’s my Layout file. Problem dimensions are everywhere :slight_smile:

  • some are unlinked (red), although model haven’t changed.
  • some area unlinked, and don’t reflect changes
  • some are linked (not red) but don’t reflect changes

Generally I find it hard to actually choose what snaps to trust, if I cannot find a (green) endpoint snap, I will go for a red edge snap. Its also hard to understand what you are actually snapping to, is it a flattened version of your view, or can you expect Layout to find some snaps in different heights of a plan view, and does that matter to the dimensioning prosess ?

PRES.layout (12.3 MB)

Edit: and my Profile is now completed…

I’ll look at your file shortly.

Thanks for completing your profile.

What I see in your LO file is the dimensions that won’t reconnect are dimensioing to section lines not to endpoints in the geometry of the model. Basically they aren’t anchored to anything. The dimensions generally need to be anchored to endpoints to remain connected. At the very least you should make sure you are clicking at corners in the model to set the dimensions. Another option, which is what I did for the screen shot below, is to replace the section fill with a section cut face so it is actual geometry that can be dimensioned like the other geometry in the model. Then I anchored new dimensions (in blue) to endpoints on the section cut face.

1 Like

Following on from @DaveR said you have intersecting groups…

which in my experience (and I’m not necessarily saying that this is your problem) this can cause problems like you are experiencing and e.g. if in Layout you want to draw a line starting from an SU edge that you see in the viewport but the line tool won’t snap because there are some intersecting groups (not sure if I’ve explained properly).

This happened to me a lot when I was more sloppy with my groups - a wall group would intersect with a floor group and I would get so frustrated in LO because I couldn’t snap to the wall/floor junction

1 Like

thanks. I make some overlapping groups, that is maybe not a good thing :slight_smile:

I think not a great thing, anyway.

thanks. I don’t understand how they could have been connected to the section lines. When I redimension it I only get endpoint (green) options for these corners.

These inner walls have been heightened after they were dimensioned, but that should not make a difference? That begs the question: What am I really dimensioning from when I get a green snap:

  • the bottom line endpoints (by the floor)?
  • the line endpoints in the section cut?
  • The top geometry above the section cut?

Here’s a prime example of a dimension not being linked to endpoints in the model. I’ve put a mask in to fade the model and make the extension lines easier to see.

The anchoring points on the dimension are at the triangles at the bottom corners of the selection. They don’t come anywhere close to endpoints in the model. If they did when you put the dimension in, you must have moved the entire dimension which resulted in unlinking it from the model.

yes. Here I quickly dimensioned from edge to edge, as there were no corner points to be found at the end of the group towards the outer wall (strange problem I’ve discussed before) The other corners were so cluttered from line weights I didn’t risk dimensioning from there. Struggling to find a good workflow here, maybe I need to produce a separate section cut, and layer that on top as you suggest in the first post, although that really slows down the prosess of updating Layout with modeling changes. Will also experiment with a separate viewport with just walls, and turn the underlying full model viewport off while dimensioning. I don’t get why Layout offers the “red snap” if it can not keep these dimensions updated.

Down and dirty dimensioning option, I think. It’s a bit like allowing you to orbit and pan the camera in a viewport which breaks the link to the original scene. Great for quick one-off stuff. Not so good when the model needs to be updated.

I noticed it is difficult in some places to figure out which corners should be dimensioned. I think simplifying your viewports and using stacked viewports could go a long way to helping with the dimensioning aspect. Each viewport on a different layer in LO and with different tags turned on. You can probably use the same scene for all of the viewports and just control tag visibility for each viewport. Turn off the layers for the viewports you don’t need to see while putting dimensions in for the viewport you do want to see. I do this sort of thing when I am dimensioning furniture parts. Exterior edges are shown in one viewport while hidden lines are shown in another. I only have one of those viewports visible at any one time while dimensioning.

yeah. Ill get this right, some day. :slight_smile:

1 Like

Usually, I have noticed dimension line shifts and detachments from the drawing in cases when I have made some changes in the drawing into the SU ( including scene updating, redrawing or repairing lines etc.) already after inserting the viewport into the LO and dimension marking.

Dimensions marked in red indicate that a dimension has been linked to a specific drawing point that has now moved, redrawn or cannot be found for other reasons. The unpainted ones probably indicate that the real point of attachment did not exist from the beginning (the exception is the angular dimensions, which do not actually represent the angle in the model, but only the angle seen inside the LO in the particular view, and always stay uncolored).

The method recommended by @DaveR is very good. However, in cases where the drawing has not been prepared for this purpose, another “lifebuoy” can be used: applying the Wireframe style from the Default Styles folder to the model inside LO for the dimension marking time. After that you can return to the desired style.

using a wireframe style while dimensioning is a good method as well. I will experiment with that. But all of this is because Layout has not cracked the nut on how to easily dimension your drawings as is, where the lines are easily distinguishable in busy areas, and where there are always ways to dimension your drawing and have them update. Before I used Autocad for that purpose, and being just wireframe lines on a separate model space layer dimensioning was never a problem, even back in the 1990s. There seems to be a need for some new ideas in order for Layout to be as good and easy presentation tool as sketchup is for modeling. Maybe a wireframe mode should be linked to the dimension tool, to always turn on with the tool, so one could find the snap-points, or wireframe is a setting that can be turned on and off with a keyboard shortcut, like in sketchup, so that Layout does not have to render linestyles all the time.

1 Like

I already wrote in another topic about the fact that the user should save the model style view settings in LO so that everything does not have to be done from scratch every time. For example, I never use Raster, offered by default, and set the line thickness to 0.05.

The difference with AutoCAD (LT, not 3D) is that everything in CAD is in one plane. Inside the LO the plane effect is deceptive. If the required points for measuring in the model are not in the same plane, it is difficult for the program to determine what I am trying to measure. In the following example, only in the Wireframe view it is possible to get the exact distance between the line intersections, using nodes B and C, as well as between A and B, C or D, or D and B or C, because nodes B and C are farther than nodes A and D in the model. A is covered by the lower edge of the seat. Dimension tool don’t snap to nodes A, B or C in other views.

This is a conceptual thing that I do not understand, because the dimensions I can get if I make a little effort (using the line coming from the intersection instead of the intersection node) are as if there were no depth differences between the nodes, as if the whole drawing were in one plane. The same - when using Wireframe view.

interesting. Can you explain this one sentence ( quoted) again for the slower minds…

Sorry for my bad English!

See the drawing above. In the stool drawing (yellow), the dimension tool does not snap directly at points A, B, or C, but snaps at any visible line at a freely chosen point. It is a bit complicated, but you can find two points on the lines so that the distance is displayed correctly. You can also measure (not between nodes) the distances BD, CD and others.

Below is the measured distance between point (D) and line. 0.18 m is the correct distance.

Hey Odd_
You said it - yet another “work-around” required in LayOut in order to do things that should be fundamental to a 2D presentation program!
LayOut indeed needs to be “… as good and easy … as SketchUp”!
Hello … Trimble?

It´s easy to dimension in Sketchup, and not so easy in Layout. What if Layout actually WAS paperspace, instead of only loosely using it as a conceptual reference. Then one could double-click a viewport to enter the actual model, dimension it, zoom and orbit to make sure you get your dimensioning right. After clicking outside the viewport it would close back to the same view as before,

Maybe the dimensions would live on a hidden layer in sketchup only visible in Layout.
This double-clicking the viewport to change the perspective would then be gone, and that can only be a good thing.