Rhinonest vs contour command for slicing and separating


Hi there. I have a need to slice models. I don’t really need the actual nesting function from Rhinonest, but I do need to slice and separate the slices into a long row. So…I know I can slice using contour in Rhino, but I can’t necessarily separate easily so they are all laid out in a row? Am I correct in my assumption. I believe Rhinonest does this easily? I will buy Rhinonest If I have to, but since I’m new to Rhino I don’t want to buy something that I don’t need. PS. I will have a minimum of 200 slices, so whatever would be easiest and quickest would be great.




There is an easy trick I teach my students.

  1. Run the Contour command (say with the slices horizontal, direction vertical)
  2. With the contours still selected, in Front view, call the command Shear
  3. Define a vertical axis for the shear reference (in Front view) and then (ortho off) flop the shear over to the right (rotate CW). Do not finish the Shear command yet.
  4. While this is going on, keep an eye out in Top view (you can zoom if you need to) and when the pieces are separated, click to finish the Shear command and set the pieces.
  5. In Top view, use ProjectToCPlane to flatten the pieces out on Z0.

It’s easier to do than to describe… You still may need to manually adjust the spacing between pieces and layout. This can be scripted to be more automatic… But it’s not nesting.



That sounds great! Love workarounds like that! Thank you.


Hi there, I have a similar question.

I used contour plates command to slice a volume which it is a “hypothetical building.” Now, I need to spread each plate apart in the perspective view to show each plate in a vertical mode. My intention is to clearly show each plate in an isometric view. After using the contour command, I tried to use the “shear” command but I can’t separate them vertically.

My questions is: is there any other command to separate the plates vertically?

Thank you!

(Pascal Golay) #5

Scale1D in the direction normal to the cutting planes should do it(e.g. if the cuts are parallel to WorldXY, then scale in World Z)



[quote=“Helvetosaur, post:2, topic:13299”]You still may need to manually adjust the spacing between pieces and layout.

Would Pascal`s Distribute script do the trick for the spacing? The tasks above sound like what I use it for all the time.



Hi @suemcnenly, I have a similar workaround workflow to Mitch @Helvetosaur, but I make use of the RemapCplane command which works for contours in any starting view orientation.

  1. Run Contour command
  2. With Contours selected - Setup 2 x viewports, One in TOP view and the other in eg. FRONT view (Looking at your contour profiles
  3. Make sure the current view is the view looking at the contours face on, and then use:
    And select the TOP viewport as the destination view.
  4. Now just flatten everything to Z=0 by using SetPt with the contours selected, and drag each contour out in the top view.
    Using this method you can also quickly flatten out contours at odd cplane angles, by setting up the cplane of the starting viewport to be perpendicular to the contour profile faces. Hope that helps… Michael VS