Rhino 8 Feature: Linetype Enhancements

Linetype Enhancements

Linetypes for Rhino 8 have been enhanced beyond a simple dash pattern. These enhancements include join styles, cap styles, and new width properties. Unlike traditional patterns and simple print widths, enhanced linetypes can draw stylized curves with both width and taper.

Document and Object Linetypes

  • Existing Linetypes can be customized or new linetypes copied in Options under Document Properties on the Linetypes page. Custom linetypes are referenced by objects in the same manner as Rhino has supported in the past.

  • Linetypes can also be created and assigned to individual objects which may be useful for specialized linetypes that only make sense when applied to one object.

End Caps and Join Styles

  • End caps define the shape drawn at the ends of open curves.
  • Join styles define the shape to use when curves make a sharp corner or change in direction.

Width and Width Units

Sets the width of the linetype to be based on screen pixels or model units.

  • Width in pixels make curves appear a fixed thickness no matter the zoom level.
  • Width with model units make widths appear thicker the closer you zoom.

Taper Controls

These settings work together to configure the artistic taper.

Taper Position (0 to 1)

Defines the normalized location on a curve where the Taper Width is applied.

Taper Width

Controls the line width at the Taper Position.

End Width

Controls the line width at the end of the curve. When Taper is enabled, Width is used at the start of the curve.

Object Property Shortcut

You can shortcut the linetype configuration by setting the linetype as an object property in the Properties panel directly. An existing linetype can be used as a template for the new custom linetype.

With an object selected, go to the Linetypes control on the Properties panel and pick Custom as the linetype.

In the Custom Linetype dialog, configure the linetype options.

Linetypes Panel

Use the panel to streamline your creativity with custom line types.
To access the Linetypes panel:

  • Type the Linetypes command to open or make active the Linetypes panel.
  • Use the Show Panel option from the gear icon in the upper right corner of the panel container.
    Pick the gear, then pick Show Panels…
    The Linetypes panel will appear.

See this video on how to use the Linetypes panel.

A few hidden gems on the Linetypes panel:

  • Double-click the linetype preview frame to select all the objects that are assigned this linetype.
  • Assign selected objects to the linetype. Select the geometry. Press the Shift key and double-click on the linetype preview frame to assign the linetype directly.

Note: Linetypes created on the Properties panel are only available for the objects to which they are assigned. To make them available for layers, save the custom linetype to the Document by picking the Save to Document Properties option at the bottom of the dialog. Now you will be able to assign the custom linetype to a layer or other objects.


More than Curves

Linetypes now work with curves, surfaces, polysurfaces, extrusions, SubDs, dimensions and details. Customized control of different parts of objects (isocurves versus edges) can be made in the advanced display mode settings.

Perspective Rotate

These linetypes will always remain oriented to the view camera. As you rotate your model, the custom linetypes display planar.



To test Custom linetypes, you will need to check these Rhino settings.

  • Print Preview needs to be of turned off. (PrintDisplay command)
  • Custom Linetype also does not display if the Display Mode has Curve Width set to Pixels. Reset your Display Mode to Default settings.

Give this a try and let us know if it works for you.


Wow! Nice - cannot wait to try it…

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End caps don’t work, they don’t.

Thanks -

I’ve reported this as RH-74021 Annotation: Linetype: Round cap is not very round

looks very nice for presentation/artistic purposes. I wish for linetypes to support custom patterns though :frowning:

5 posts were split to a new topic: Transparency based on Camera distance

Currently caps and joins are not working for linetypes with widths in units other than pixels. The pixel width linetypes should be working.

You can define custom patterns for linetypes. The sgements input lets you define a comma separated list of dashes and gaps.

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I guess he means more customizable, in AutoCad you can have linetypes with shapes and text. Its used in construction and mapping. Examples: https://www.cadforum.cz/img/sit-csn2.gif


exactly that. it is an essential thing when program is serious about drafting capabilities (for civil engineering and architecture it is a must). few type of drawings can be made without special linetypes.

The work done for linetypes that is described in this post was done to lay the foundation for further enhancements to linetypes in the future. Complex shape support will not be added to Rhino 8, but it is something we want to support in the future.


Is it possible to outline the different line types?

@Per What do you mean exactly?
A different linetype to be used as a silhouette?
Please attached a image showing what you would like to see.


Hi Mary Ann!
Like in illustrators path tool “Outline Stroke”

Or is it already “Outlined”?

Thank you, @Per .
Currently, are a couple ways to accomplish outline curves. But it will take a couple steps.
Here are some suggestions:

  • You can use the Silhouette command to trace the geometry and generate curves.
    When you have your curves, use the custom linetypes as described in this post to add any width or taper to your lines.

  • If you have an image that is not surfaces, polysurfaces or other 3D geometry which Silhouette requires, you can use the Rhino called Vectorize. (You can generate that by screen capture and paste to trace. Lots of ways to accomplish this.) The Rhino 8 Vectorized has been improved a lot. In Rhino type PackageManager and search for Vectorize. (See this thread on Vectorize). When you have your curves, use the custom linetypes as described in this post to add any width or taper to your lines.
    Trace your image with Vectorize.

  • If you are want text curves, just create text as curves with the TextObject command. as curves
    When you have your curves, use the custom linetypes as described in this post to add any width or taper to your lines.

Mary Ann Fugier

@mary Thank you for the suggestions! Now I have to try out Vectorize also :smiley: And by the way great work (as always!) with the new Lines types!!

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Looks like a lot of good stuff, especially for illustrations.

The linetype preview pane scale should be bigger or adjustable. It’s pretty much useless for telling what a standard old-fashioned linetype looks like because the patterns are so small they mostly look about the same.
Also, dots (0 length segments) don’t display at all

Dots are broken at the moment. I still need to figure out what you did to deal with zero length segments :slight_smile:

It looks like linetypes only display up to 4 segment lengths in a repeat pattern.
I have a drawing that has a linetype with a pattern of ( 4, 1, 4, 1, 1, 1 ) that used to work correctly and now displays as ( 4, 1 ) or (4, 1, 4, 1 ) .

I don’t remember but I bet it wasn’t very fancy

Thanks! Nice feature. Is there a way to extract geometry (surfaces) from the tapered linetypes?