Layer visibility in Detail, Not Painful Anymore!

For my work flows, that doesn’t often apply, but I don’t see why Layer States couldn’t be applied per detail, though it could really bloat file sizes gven the number of details in some drawings. I don’t work in the architecture field.

I’m just throwing ideas in the ring, as this aspect still seems to be a bone of contention in Rhino. Your comments (and mine) go to show that McNeel’s task is an unenviable one. There is no “right answer” that will make everyone happy. Even within your own comments, there is a contradiction: you commend Revit view templates, but you hate the complex, clunky interface that Revit has. I have no experience of Revit.

I agree that the visibilty states of layers in layouts/details and model space should be independent.


any news on that?


The bug tracking issue that Dale links to above is “In Progress”. We don’t have anything to show yet, but the feature is being worked on and we hope to have something to show in the near future.

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Steve, thank you.

I am messing around with the layer state manager, but honestly, I dont get it, how one can control off an on layers in differerent layout details.

It seems to work randomly (i know), buts gets harder and harder if you have more details on the plan.


Hi @Benjamin_Schnei,

You can use the Layer State Manager to save the states of layers in one details and restore them to another.

– Dale

It would be great if layer states of the model space would be compatible to those of layouts and details - because they ain’t .
In other words, you cannot restore a layer state that was saved in model space in a detail (and vice versa).
If you go over the whole topic, you might want to consider this, too.

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I really thought we had got some momentum on this issue and McNeel would be solving it soon, but 3 years have gone past, there is a new version of Rhino and lots of neat documentation tools but this one persists.
Now I see in youtrack issue closed?

how is this possible?
@mary @wim @KelvinC @Bozo

Hi @guido,
There are always “starts and stops” in any release development, and “dark allies” we have to back out off.
But this feature is in Rhino 8.

  1. Make a detail active.
  2. Go to the light bulb in the Detail On column, and right click.
    (you have to over the bulb when you right click.)
  3. From the menu, select “Layer Off in Detail Only” or “Layer On in Details Only”.
    4.Then select “This layout” or “All Layouts”.

See how to use it here

If you are asking about something different, let us know more.

Mary Ann Fugier

Hi Mary,

Doing it this way you have to go and change this setting layer by later, for all the layers that you want visible in that detail?

And if you have to setup a different combination of layers on/off in a separate detai view you have to do it all over again?

What would be useful is having a one click way to be in a detail and say: “the layer visibility I have right now in my model, go ahead and save and keep it persistent in this detail.” Like saving a layer state. Then when you leave that detail and start changing layer visibility in model space your detail does not update.

Ideally I’d like yo be able to load any saved state from my Rhino file (model state) into any detail view. For example a later state, or a complete saved snapshot.

That’s not possible in V8?




Hi @mary ,
This is not the issue.
As @brian put it:

I want the detail visibility to be independent of the model space.
I need to be able to configure this:
model OFF detail ON

Picture an architect needing to publish a set of drawings. Different views, and different scales, each highlighting different elements. Fire protection, electric, plumbing, alterations, finishes. We need to be able to rely on those Drawing sets to be consistent in displaying the correct elements, without having to go back through every detail every time we revise part of the project and edit the model.

@guido The On lightbulb without the ‘brackets’ around it is a global switch

When you are in model space you have control over Model On:

When in Layout space you have control over Layout On:

When in Detail you have control over Detail On:

You might have to drag the columns based on your preference.


Excellent. @Gijs

It is pushed to the right, so those that do not use layouts are not confused by the global light bulb and the bracketed one “together”. But it is there!

The feature or “model visibility” is extremely helpful and I use it a lot to not so that I can model in the perspective view, adjust the visibility of the layers, and not mess up by layouts.

Also the “global visibility” is still 100% still necessary and when you set global visibility to off you know that whatever “unmentionables” you have on the layer are go off “everywhere” and will not be viewed or printed.

See in this video here I talk about the feature and show how to rearrange the “light bulbs” if you find the Model Visibility as useful as I do. Watch from about 9 min. to 12 min. for a discussion of this feature.

“New Detail On” is used less frequently and I do not promote it to the left.
If you turn off a layer with this special light bulb, new details will be created with this layer already off. (ACAD users know this as “Newfreez” and now you have it in Rhino 8.)

Mary Ann Fugier


@Gijs @mary I see. This is great, I can finally document in Rhino!
For sure I will swap “model on” to the left with global “on” to the far right or, (just noticed this Rh8 feature), turn off the column :smiley:

I need to make sure my team only controls model visibility with “model on” and keeps global “on” vis permanently on.

:smiling_face_with_three_hearts: Thanks to all the McNeel team for getting this done!

I want to remove the still painful from the title but can’t edit old posts


Hi @gustojunk,
Sorry for the late reply.
I wanted to work up a video for you. And a file for you to test drive.

Layer States have been support for modifying layers in the detail for a few releases now.
The panel makes them easier to access and now in Rhino 8, it is the same for Windows and Mac.

Currently it is in a separate panel Layer State panel, but we could ask for a button in the Layer panel to more easily restore the layer states from the Layers panel.

  1. Make a Layer state in a Detail.
  2. Make another detail current, on the same layout or a different layer.
  3. Restore the layer state.

You can try this file here: layer states.3dm (407.4 KB)
See the video here:

Let us know if this works for you.
Mary Ann Fugier


It would also help if layer visibility states could be more easily transferrable, to anywhere.

  • Copy layer visibility states from model/layout/detail local to any other global, and vice versa.
  • Swap local and global, in all spaces.
  • Restore layer visibility from a stored layer state to any other visibility column (model/layout/detail space). Visibility states should be compatible between all ‘spaces’.