Make Blocks Unique

Is there an easy way to make a block, or multiple blocks, unique from other instances of that block in the model?

You could explode the block and group the result using a unique name for the group…? --Mitch

Hi, Thanks.
But what if say, for instance, you have a whole bunch of blocks that you want to make unique from the others in the model. Would that not mean that you would have to explode one of them, make it into a new block and then replace all the others that you want to be unique?
Sorry, I’m from a Sketchup background. In Sketchup you would simply select all the instances of that block, that you want to be unique, right click context menu, make unique, done. They will all still be blocks, if you edit one it will edit the others, but it will not edit the blocks you did not make unique…

OK, I guess we’re using different definitions of “unique”… I thought you wanted to make a particular block different from all the rest (my definition of unique). With the way Rhino works with blocks, I don’t know of any quick and easy way to do what you want, actually.


Sketchup does do this very nicely. If you’d like to keep your same workflow in Rhino you can do the following (counter intuitive maybe but it works):

Cut the blocks you’d like to make unique into a different file.
Make a modification to the block (maybe add a point inside them if you really don’t want any changes immediately)
Cut and paste them back into the original file
Note now they’ll all be called ‘chair 01’ in the blockmanager.


Hi Alex
Thanks for the workaround.
Yes, definitely not nearly as convenient as the Sketchup system for groups and blocks.
I can sometimes have hundreds of replicated blocks in a model, and then need to change a bunch of them without changing the others. So to not have an easy way to do this would be disastrous, so thanks for that.

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Thanks a lot for the workaround! Definitely SketchUp is way more convenient regarding blocks manipulation.

You could try from @ejnaren

There is a script to make blocks unique.


Thanks Nathan! I’ll give it a try.

That is indeed the precise function of my small plugin.


Does it work with Rhino for Mac? Do you know one on that does?

I actually don’t have a Mac so I have never tested it.
But it relies on rhinocommon which should be a unified API.
I have not created a Mac installer though but I can try and do it for you in the coming days.
You are also very welcome to try yourself if you are in a hurry. Should be easy. Described here:

If I don’t hear anything I’ll see if I can upload one on github soon for people to test.

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SetObjectName command can assign unique names to block instances. SelName command can find them.

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Or it can be achieved by simple Grasshopper & Elefront script. (For this is as close as I can get to regular scripting. :frowning: )

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Your plugin is awesome


Glad you like it :slightly_smiling_face:

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Thanks! So useful!

useful indeed, could McNeel eventually implement this into R7?

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Thanks @ejnaren for this plugin!

I’m a 10 year SketchUp user switching to Rhino and your plugin is a huge time saver.


Hi All, @walther , @ejnaren - please check

RH-59420 Split off blocks to a new definition

and let me know if I have correctly conveyed the request.