Rhino 8 Drafting: Hatching and Vector Pen Display Mode

The new per-object hatch settings in the WIP version are very close to being totally game-changing for architectural workflow–nice work McNeel team!!

I see that Wireframe now prints as vector linework, and that there have been other requests for technical display modes to also print as vector. Basically any display mode that could print vector linework with no hidden-lines visible is what I’m hoping for.

Here–I think–is the associated YT issue: is there any update on timeframe for this feature? Can we expect it in the Rhino 8 release?


Hi Brayton -

At this point in time, RH-11615 is on the “Future” list, and, as such, not something that is being considered for Rhino 8.

Thanks for the info Wim. Hopefully this item is near the top of the pile of ‘Future’ items. At least in an architectural workflow, most of the project management software used to organize and view drawings only recognizes vector-based text (in section tags, elevation arrows, etc) for auto-generating links between drawings. There is also the obvious benefit of drastically reduced file-sizes. Seems like this would also make Make2D pretty much obsolete.

Even if this could be solved without dealing with the shading question–ie a wireframe display mode without hidden lines–that would immediately open up a whole new workflow for technical drawings.

I’m curious if the barrier to implementation is a difficult technical issue inside Rhino, copyright infringement, or something else?


@Brayton_Orchard VisualARQ already provides section attributes per object and Hidden line vector output in Rhino 5, 6, and 7 (using the “Hidden” display mode).

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5 posts were split to a new topic: Automatically unify clipped objects

I’ve noticed VisualArq has some nice layout/drafting solutions, and it looks like the hidden line vector output is working well in the video you linked.

However, I use Rhino because I like control (Revit= :nauseated_face:), and VisualArq doesn’t provide the level of freedom and control I want over my design and construction-document workflow. Since I want to retain the ability to modify/improve that workflow at any time, I’m not looking for a full plugin (and I’ve seen something similar echoed in other’s requests on this forum).

Instead of the entire plugin, I would be very interested in purchasing smaller bits of code (like this hidden line vector display) to solve particular problems. Perhaps you could offer a list of possible functions–each with an overall price to release it open-source–and then crowd-fund the most popular options?


That’s a reasonable suggestion that we can study, but we don’t have plans so far to split and sell the program by different bits of functionality.

I second this!
Currently having the issue where all of our contractors are requesting DWG versions of all our PDF layouts and it is not something we are being able to provide… the only conclusion we can come to (other than cheating and embedding an image snip of the page to an autocad file) is to completely switch software, which I really don’t want to do… or to xref all our rhino models into autocad and create the layouts in there to begin with, which I also do not wish to do.

I’ve spent weeks scouring the forums to find a work around for this but if anyone here has any tips that would be greatly appreciated~

A vector version of technical would save our entire draughting process and hours of unnecessary editing time…

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@Hebe, I’ve seen a few custom Make2D scripts on the forum that might be a work-around solution for you. Definitely not like a live model, but it’s something, and could be updated relatively quickly.

McNeel (@Wim), I’d like to add 10,000 votes for the vector printing I mentioned above. Printing Arch-D paper size PDF’s as raster images at 600dpi is like 150MB per page–it just isn’t workable, and comes with all the previously mentioned issues. You’ve solved the clipping plane per-object hatching and object-snapping; give us a hidden-line vector display mode and Rhino suddenly becomes the obvious software for so many smaller to mid-size architecture offices. Similar to what @Hebe mentioned above, this would save me literally hundreds of hours every year in my drafting workflow.

@fsalla, I trialed VisualARQ’s hidden line display mode, but it was glitchy, caused some of my details to be randomly deleted, and did not appear to work with clipping planes. And really, this functionality should just be native to Rhino.


Hi @Brayton_Orchard, I’m interested to know more about these “glitchy” issues you had with VisualARQ Hidden display mode, in order to fix them. In any case, Details should never be deleted. I haven’t heard of a similar issue before. If you can share some files to visualarq@asuni.com we will take a look.

True. We may add support to clipping planes when printing to vector output in Hidden display mode in the future. You need to use VisualARQ sections or Level cut planes instead to see the geometry and their section attributes properly displayed in Hidden mode.

Hi Brayton -

That’s on top of my 10,000 votes.

FWIW, the development of that feature has started but it’s too early to tell when this will become available.


That’s the best news of the day!
The week actually…
Make it the year!


Yes!!! Fantastic news!

Please don’t forget to add (optional) intersection lines/curves! They are costly, yes, but needed.
Not even VisualArq’s ‘Hidden’ mode, which can also print to vector, has them.

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RH-11615 is fixed in the latest WIP

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I’m almost jumping up and down, but I downloaded the latest WIP (8.0.23220.12305, 2023-08-08)) and this doesn’t seem to work yet. When I select the ‘Vector’ option in the print preview dialog for Technical or Pen mode, the image in the PDF disappears.

A great addition!

Ditto, print only shows the edges of the top surface. Export > PDF works, though hidden Iines and intersection are not dashed.

I also wanted to vote for a vectorized display mode. I’ve recently completed my Masters in Architecture, and Rhino is my preferred tool. Many students, including myself, use the program for quick conceptual studies and even to create entire 3D buildings. However, Rhino is somewhat considered an interim solution due to its capacity for fast 3D modeling. Thus, students take their 2D drawings to Rhino, create 3D models, make 2D drawings with clippingplane and Make 2D and then export the entire project back to their preferred software.

When I ask them why they don’t stay within Rhino for this workflow, they mention the challenges with hatching and line work, as well as the lack of proper vector output. The vector drawings they export from Rhino don’t accurately reflect what they see in the display modes.

Ultimately, in this context, Rhino functions as an intermediary solution. Of course, this is a workflow suitable for students, not the professional realm. I now have to contemplate alternative solutions where Rhino falls short. Introducing a vectorized display mode could indeed revolutionize this process. It would be fantastic to see this feature already in Rhino 8!


I work in the professional realm, but nonetheless I’d like to see Rhino become sufficiently equipped for ‘final’ 2d work, including vector export - dwg and better vector pdf (with colored hatches) from layouts, among other things.


A quick test in 8.0.23220.08305

Top left is the vector pdf imported into Rhino 7