Rhino 8 Features for Architects

So lets recapitulate what is there for architects in v8:

.minor thing introducing round frames
EDIT. adding line cap styles and linetype scaling

.blockmanager change but no change to blocks themselvses, not even matching acapulco plugin capabilities, editting in place is still as bad as always

.push and pull is very useful

.snapping to clipped geometry

-bugs and lack of trivial features untackled at all
.cap is oriented to world not cplane
.dimension text when placed outside are too far (very silly indeed due to one BAD formula how the distance is calculated)
.make 2d is total mess most of time (i spend hours of cleaning the outputs)
.text dont have superscript subscript
.text cant have width factor
.no way to batchplot multiple pdfs (i believe this might eventually be in v8 because is see every layout can store print settings, hopefully)
.cant clip linked blocks
.no dimensioning possiblity in layouts besides parallel projection views
.cant intersect meshes and surfaces with the same command

Personally i find this too little for a new major version. It feels rather like a small update. But the worst is reluctance to fix obvious long standing bugs making rhino feel more unreliable.

Whats the opinion about this from arch folks here?


Per object linetype scale is pretty nice for drafting. Also endcap-styles in the linetype options.

Altho dashed/dash-dot linetypes are broken in WIP since forever, the PatternBySegment setting in LineTypeDisplay still does nothing

End cap style is nice but linetype scaling if using layouts should result in good (as defined) linetypes scales all the time. Of course when having multiple vies in model space in different scales then is convenient to set linetype scales accordingly.

Hi Ivan,

Could you maybe ask for this and the responses to be split off into its own thread? This one is specific to the UI and your topic is on functionality. If we spread the jam too thin we lose the flavour…


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Unfortunately, I have to agree,

there are some minor things like e.g. layer based clipping but not really something I am really exited about…

E.g. middle mouse popup, which I use quite intensively is pretty messed up right now.

Let´s hope they fix this before they release it…


One happy improvement is that all viewports/layouts/details now have their own local layer visibility toggle, and all share the same global toggle. That’s clean!
There’s even a “New Detail On” column, which hasn’t been mentioned a lot, as it looks.
At least now layouts don’t get messed up anymore just by working layers in model space.

Architect features missing? The list is a mile long without VisualArq, and a little shorter with it.

  • Am I the only one that feels the whole system of how geometry is “styled” in a view is… convoluted? It’s based on concepts from the 80ies, and should be redesigned from the ground up. Do we really need a distinction between viewport and print display? ‘Style’ parameters are strewn across display mode, layer panel and object properties, and even after 10 years I sometimes struggle finding the right place to tweak.
    A system of style overrides for views should be there, easy to apply and exchange as a whole. Snapshots get close to this, but they should be a property of any view or layout. Needs some proper UI designing…
  • New section tools are kind of nice (where did the menu vanish to in the latest WIP?), but I don’t like that they target only model space, just like Make2D does. 2D extractions should go someplace else, layout space was my initial suggestion, or even some new kind of 2d space.
  • Scheduling… non-existent, except with plugins or Grasshopper hacks.
  • Blocks cannot contain text that shows the block’s coordinates, do they. Thus no simple spot elevation symbols etc.
  • No dynamic blocks.
  • No dynamic Make2D.

I just looked at this with high expectations, since it would address a HUGE problem we are facing with our layouts on a day to day basis.

However I cannot see the use case of the new “New Detail On” column / switch in the WIP, maybe someone can enlighten me with an example?

For me the problem of existing details being filled up with unwanted new elements can only be addressed by introducing a detail mode wich is:

Show only user selected elements by default and automatically hide all new created elements.

That way we would be able to create a detail, the default state would be (when this mode is activated) that no object at all would be visible. Now the user can add elements with “! _ShowSelectedInDetail” to his liking.
When he continues to draw new elements in his model, their default state for that detail would be “hidden”.

This would ensure that:

a) existing objects that have been selected for a certain layout would still be updated when they are edited.
b) new generated elements would not accidently mess up existing layouts.

As you know, any Detail (or Layout) has a second column of layer visibility toggles, which is local to the Detail.
When you create a NEW Detail, all layers where this

is turned off will have their local visibility
off per default.

Hi Eugene,

Yes, I (think) I understand what it technically does, however I do not see what problem this is supposed to solve.

Can someone give me a practical example of a real life situation?

My problem is not that a new layout has layers that I do not want to be visible, but rather that all my existing layouts gets contaminated by newly created stuff over time rapidly.

If I open a layout after having spent a day working on other stuff in model space within the file, I have to spent a lot of time to clean up everything again, since all new geometry now is visible on this detail.

IMHO there should be an option that new created elements are invisible in the detail by default. THAT would help the details from becoming corrupt.


For architects? Uhm…Almost nothing… I see some improvement, but I can not find reasons to move over to a new version.

Acutually, it’s been long time since it has been out as a third-party plugin. Mcneel just made it built-plugin. However, I haven’t seen anybody who use it for their project. Me, neither. It still does not work properly. It looks still risky in using for real project.

2.Section Style
I think the feature might be improved enough for 9 version, but it’s just another display mode at the moment. It’s not connected to documentation work.

3.New Layer Panel
At last, it become possible to have independent layer state between model and layout. Nice! However, it should have been possible much earlier. Safelayout has made it possible to do that before long time. So…It’s not that touching. Safetlyout still work for 7 version.

4.New linetype system.
This is useful, but it is only when architect can work on documentation through Rhino. Only few architects work on documentation through Rhino. Total documentation work environment has not been upgraded very long time. It does not make sense to use Layout in 2023. It worked successfully at least up to 2010, when we work through 2D, but Now is the era of 3D modeling. I would throw away Layout system. It sucks!!

5.Rhino related component in GH1
Many things are already possible to achieve using Elefront. I’m not sure Elefront developers will release new version, but it still works through 7 version.

No reason to buy 8 version!!


i second your dissapointment with version 8 but i disagree with this. there is no way around creating documentation other than via layout system of sort. sheet space is present in all other softwares as well. but definitely it can be improved.

i would add that only thing cool about version 8 is pushpull.

what makes me furious is that trivial things havent been attended at all. with little effort could have streamlined rhino but they havent.

and cherry on top after all those years there are problems with the simplest of things. yesterday i used dim volume with meters units but got 0 volumes, with millimeters cubic meters were obtained. i dont have the strength to report this kind of behaviour which had been fixed but those fixes are not systemic but superficial.

The old plugin was a toy, an idealist project. So, no wonder very few used it in ‘real life’.
Now as it becomes embedded in R8, it has to prove it’s worth, and adapt to ‘real world’ demands.
You can go to this thread and voice yours.

True, I use it per default.
Has 2 annoying glitches, though: 1) save the scene in layout space, reload, and all model space layers are on. Ugh. 2) switch to model space and the layer light bulb icons don’t uodate at first (layers work anyway).

Although many would want to. I for sure do.
That’s why I won’t give up nagging the good McNeel people to push forward even harder regarding documentation features.

As Ivan says.
Let’s not be rash. 2D documentation is there to stay. Creating 2D extractions from 3D is an art form. An abstraction that can have countlless different use cases. Hard to automate, but there’s progress.
Yes, others do it (much) better, but the last word is not spoken here.

But yes, it always feels like just 10% are missing to make documentation cool and usable, and I feel there’s a bit of a lack of vision. They seem a bit reluctant to do their homework and study good examples how other established software packages do it. Not that new ideas and workflows aren’t welcome, but when you invent something new, it has to bring a bonus, solve a problem. Documentation has been solved nicely by e.g. Archicad. Don’t copy it, but get inspired by it!


Today, I realize RCP view is just view. Neither SectionTools nor Make2D works with RCP view. The new version feels like Rhino 7.5 rather than like Rhino 8.


what is rcp view?

Reflected Ceiling Plan

I’m going to defend the layout system and mention that it’s really up to the user to make it work (or not work) for them.

Rhino is used for too many different things to try and tailor a layout space to one specific application. Plus, since it’s so similar to CAD it adheres to a standard of one sort or another… it’s actually better than AutoCAD once you add everything together (except for lag, but I need a new computer).

Like everyone else, I’m also a little underwhelmed by the lack of real updates. Not necessarily for architecture but drafting in general: The text that nobody at McNeel seems to want to really talk about. Perhaps AutoCAD spoils us with it’s text editor because almost every other program has severely lacking text editors.

At this point I might actually just stay with Rhino 7. I’ve got almost everything figured out and can almost use it to replace AutoCAD completely (I can almost get away with the text editor). As some of you may or may not be aware I’ve done quite a bit of work since posting my last “architecture” related topic and would say that at this point I can generate better value-per-hour than I can in Revit with certain project types (small projects, custom one-off projects, etc…).


Is there some specific feature in the text editor that you are looking to see improvements with?

Everything above more or less (it’s been discussed quite a bit in other posts).
My advice would be to study AutoCAD’s and try and investigate what is possible and what isn’t.

I could make a video if it helps and is actually taken seriously. Other’s have also stated that it’s a bit glitchy. Reliable but archaic is okay. Feature-rich with the occasional glitch or bug (but with a work-around) is okay. But the two negatives together…

I will chime in.