Using Stacked Layers/Unified View

Stacked layers and Unified View allow you see all your layers together, so when you change views, all the layers change. But there are some things to watch for, like the 2D stuff.

Setting up your layers correctly is essential is you want to use Vectorworks for BIM, and if you want to use Stacked Layers or Unified View.

Stacked layers was a new technique introduced in Vectorworks 2008. Before Vectorworks 2008, if you wanted to see a complete view of your project, you would make a new layer for 3D viewing. Then you could layer link all your design layers to the 3D model layer. In order to view your model, you would change to this layer and make all the Layer Options Active Only. This would be the place to set up views for rendering, creating elevations and so on.

With Vectorworks 2008 and 2009, you do not have to set up the 3D model layer. Stacked Layers allow you to see all the visible layers in your file, and when you move the view around, all the layers look like they are joined together. Vectorworks uses the layer Z height to get all the layers to set correctly in 3D.

This is the normal view of a building when you change the view. One layer has the correct view, the other has remained in isometric. When you change views, both layers do not change together.
The answer is to use Stacked Layers.

Go to the View bar. This is one place where you will find the Stack layers .

The other place to find Stack Layers… is on the View menu.

When you turn on Stack Layers, all visible layers change to the same view. If you change the view, all the visible layers show the same view.

Go to the Menu Bar.
Choose View >  Stack Layers Options…

You can set the options you want.

The top option controls the look of all the 2D objects. If you turn this option on, all the 2D objects are shown.Notice all the dimensions, they can get in the way.

Try turning off the Display 2D objects option.

For visualization, this is a better option. The model looks a lot cleaner.

You will find it difficult to work with stacked layered turned on, there are some things that do not work, like you can’t use Show/Snap/Modify others for the layer options, and all of the 2D tools don’t work.
You will find yourself turning stacked layers on, just for visualization. You will have to turn Stacked Layers off to work.

Many users struggle with setting up their layer heights correctly in Vectorworks. This Short Sharp Manual will help.

You can purchase this manual at this web site:

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