Layer Format Standard

Hi all,

I’ve been toying with the idea of establishing a layer standard for our firm, as every designer seems to be doing his or her thing, and it makes sharing files quite difficult.

Would anyone have a source they could point me to as a template, to get started?



Dear Tom D
(tom p … is writing…)
it is hard to recommend a layer-template without knowing the main purpose - is it advanced surfacing, architecture visualisation, … data for a specific cnc machine and so on…
How much expertise do the people have in your firm / company ?
do many people edit files, do you want to track changes…

and many more questions.

this looks more like a … “let s sit together and develop it” (maybe with an external rhino expert - (like me ? :wink: )
because at the end, you will also need the result to be accepted by the users …

the basic layersetting i teach:
Screenshot 2021-10-19 at 23.00.30

but i adapt it depending on above questions.
kind regards -tom

Hi Tom - I appreciate the response.

Your system is way too simple for our use. We typically have hundreds of layers, with several people accessing the same files at different times.

This is what we have currently:

Key concepts:

  • Final project surfaces should reside in an organized layer structure. Someone who has never opened this model should immediately understand how the model is organized.

  • Final work product layers should contain only the objects themselves so they can easily be sent to a third party without the clutter of other objects.

  • Objects that have been created for the purpose of developing the final surfaces should be clearly identified on separate layers. (CONSTRUCTION LAYERS, start with X)

  • Objects that need to be kept but are not part of the final product should be clearly identified on separate layers. (ARCHIVE LAYERS, start with Z)

  • Objects that are temporary, and that can be discarded because no longer needed should be clearly identified on separate layers. You should be prepared for people to delete these layers if the file gets too big (TEMPORARY LAYERS, start with T)

  • Objects that serve as reference objects (2D, 3D, etc…) and which are useful for the purpose of developing or referencing a model, but are not part of the final product should be on clearly identified layers. (REFERENCE LAYERS, start with R)

  • All other layers are considered as being part of the final product, and can be organized in any suitable nested hierarchy.

  • Revisions should be added to the layer prefix using the dot notation, followed by a letter. For example A01 – Main Surfaces, would be revised as A01.a – Main Surfaces. All unchanged elements of the original layer should be duplicated in the revised layer, so the first one can be deleted and the model still stays consistent. It can be useful to have several revision layers in parallel, when developing different versions.

Layer Naming Cheat Sheet
Axx-Qxx – [Layer name] Work product layers
Rxx – [layer name] Reference layers
Txx - [layer name] Temporary Layers
Xxx - [layer name] Construction layers
Zxx - [layer name] Archive Layers

Here is an example hierarchy we use:

A – Ship Surfaces
	A01 – Hull
		A01 – Keel
		A01 – Boot Top
		A01.a – Revised Boot Top
		A01 - Topsides
	A02 – Deck
	A03 – Frames
B – Superstructure
	B01 - Plating
E – Equipment
	E01 – Anchor
	E02 - Radar

	R00 – Grid 
	R01 – Frames
	R02 – Sections
	T01 – temp 2d lines
	T – temporary lines
	X01 – Transom Construction Lines
	X02 – Curves for lofting
	Z01 – Surfaces before radiuses
	Z02 – Preliminary hull shape