Wish: Visible surface isocurves only on selected surface(s)


Is it possible to make it so that when a surface or a sub-object surface (which is a joined part of a polysurface) with hidden isocurves is being selected with the Shift key, the isocurves will become temporarily visible? And once de-selected, the isocurves get hidden again.



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Hi Боби,

What I do sometimes is make the surface Ghosted. You can see through and there are no isocurves, but when you select it the isocurves become visible.

This is how you make the selected object Ghosted.
! _SetObjectDisplayMode _Pause _Mode=Ghosted

With this you return the visual properties to match the viewport:
! _SetObjectDisplayMode _Pause _Mode=_UseView

I created myself a button with these two:

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I regularly use the custom display mode for certain objects. Following your instructions, I can’t replicate what you described above. By default, all the surfaces that I create are with hidden surface isocurves (Rhino options > General > Default isocurve density > 0). I changed that to 1, but then the “Ghosted” viewport mode (and any other mode as well) showed surface isocurves to all the existing models in the scene. The “Ghosted” mode is completely stock (not modified by me).

if I’m not wrong, uncheck “show isocurves” from the display right panel, then it will be visisble only on selected objects,

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Got it. Seems like this works only when “Rhino options > General > Default isocurve density > 1” is set prior to building any new objects. Older objects that were made while the setting was “0” will not show the surface isocurves unless they are being evoked again from the object properties window. And sub-object selection will not show surface isocurves for custom viewport modes where the isocurves are set to be hidden. This is still quite confusing and only works on certain viewport mode. I think that it would be better and more universal if there was the following option:

If I set for example the Ghosted view to hide isocurves from the options window, it works ok for selected objects and sub objects. I will record another video

but you are right if you change the default isocurve setting from the general option, it assign it to every new object, I wouldn’t touch that thing I guess haha.

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Yes, that’s what confuses me. To make this trick work, it needs special circumstances. Since I build every new surface with hidden isocurves to make the model appearance as clean as possible, there is no quick way to see the isocurves quickly by simply selecting a surface, polysurface or a sub-object surface. Anyway, I guess I will have to wait until Rhino 7 or Rhino 8 for this option to be added. Maybe. :slight_smile:

One way to somehow make it work is to turn on the isocurves by default in the options menu, then modify every existing default and custom display mode to have the isocurves hidden (Rhino options > View > Display modes > “name” > Objects > Surfaces > Surface isocurve settings > Isocurve width = 0), and create another custom one which will show the isocurves and assign a key or keyboard macro to it.

if you uncheck the show isocurve as I mentioned it will stick there for future seasons, you don’t have to worry about it.
In my work I find the isocurves very usefull and only hide them few times to check some highlights but the rest of the time I’m more focused on how the surface flows in terms of information quantity and shape and maybe possible errors while doing some vertex or face manipulations which may lead to edge problems in the future.
If I uncheck “show isocurves” , save and close the file, it will open the same way the next time, the same file or a new one.
the show isocurve thing affects the display mode while the Isocurve width is applied to the objects itself. that’s why you can’t overwrite it once configured.

Well, I guess it is about user preference and modeling needs. :slight_smile: I work mostly with free-form shapes and often use Rhino’s analysis tools to evaluate the surface quality and edge continuity between adjacent surfaces right after I create or edit them. Also, commands like “Sweep 2 rails”, “Sweep 1 rail”, Network surface", “Loft”, “Blend surface”, “Match surface” etc show the surface isocurves even if they are turned off from the general options, so that gives me some information about the complexity and the flow. Having the isocurves hidden during the rest of the time helps me see the overall shape in a more clean way.
However, one tiny problem is that the “Offset surface” does not have a preview (unlike “Variable offset of surface”, which does), and this is mostly where I need to check the resulting offset surface’s isocurves as they tend to be in a greater number than the original surface when the “Loose=No” option is used to keep the wall thickness within tolerances (it’s also automatically used when making offset of polysurfaces).