Getting new Notes to Stack properly


I am new here.

How do I get new Notes to stack underneath each other properly?

If I select a Note an hit Enter a new note appears with it’s left hand border aligned to the left border of the Note above it. The problem is that if I only enter a short bit of text into my note, the width of the box then shrinks… but the note stays put. This means that the new Note’s text is not aligned with the Note above it.

If I then select the notes I’m interested in and hit Control/’ then notes all align by their left hand edges align nicely. But this is an extra unwanted step.

Fwiw, in contradiction to the instructions, Control/Enter and Enter seem to have exactly the same effect.

Bizarrely stacks of notes only move up to fill the gap if you create a load of notes without editing the text.

Any suggestions?

I assume that the thing you call the “box” is the border around the note? As far as I know you can’t create boxes of similar size, because what you enter in Scapple is notes, i.e. text or images or something like that, and they can either be stand-alone on the background, or you can have a border around them. It’s not a drawing app were you can create empty boxes.

Stacked notes means that they end up on top of each other with the text left-adjusted, but you can change this using Align to get it horizontally or right-aligned.

Yes I can align them after I have created them, using Notes==> Align ==> Left Edges or Control/’ to create “a stack”. But I can’t use Control/’ because it is already being used by another app (my clipboard manager - Ditto). So I was wondering if there is a way to create them automatically during entry by the keyboard. I’m a bit confused - what effect does Control/Enter do that is different from plain Enter?

In the start guide it says:

When a note is selected, hit Ctrl-Return to create a new note stacked directly beneath it. When notes are
stacked, their vertical positions will automatically be adjusted to maintain the stack when notes above them
are edited or moved out of the stack

“Return” means the “Enter” key presumably, yes?

On a Mac it’s alt-return.
And it does what the manual says.

This is how it works for me as well in Windows Scapple. Pressing Control/Enter while a Stack is selected does not create a new Stacked note, it only creates a new note under but not part of the stack - same behavior as pressing Enter.

My assumption has been that this is functionality that didn’t get fully implemented in Windows Scapple, and at some point when L&L has time they will go back and clean it up.

It works the same on a Mac.

The notes are not glued together afterwards, so if I move the uppermost note the others will not stick with it. To get that functionality you surround them with a Notes -> New Background Shape Around Selection and then choose Notes -> Magnetic. If you don’t like the surrounding border, just choose Format -> Border -> No border

Hi Lunk,

Thanks for your reply and for the info on how it works on a Mac.

Based on the User Guide’s description of Stack functionality:

  • I expect Scapple to automagically grow or shrink a list of Stacked notes, when notes are added or removed from the Stack.
  • When a Stacked Note is selected, if I press Control/Enter, I expect to see a new stacked note added to the Stack below the selected Note.

I’ve played around with it some more on Windows, and it seems that the Control/Enter Stack functionality only seems to work when the notes are left-aligned or not-aligned by default. If the default for new notes is center align or right align, than Stack functionality does not work as I expect it to.

Here are my findings.

When left-align or not-align is set as the default via Options/New Notes, Stacking behavior as defined in the user guide works. Steps: Double-click to create a new note (#1), enter text for that note. Control/Enter creates a new stacked note (#2) under the first note, enter text for that note. Control/Enter creates a new stacked note (#3) under the second note, etc. = Resulting in a notes Stack that functions as per the user guide. (Delete note #2 and the stack shifts #3 up)

If center-align or right-align is set as the default via Options/New Notes, Stacking does not work as per the User guide. Steps: Double-click to create a new note (#1), enter text for that note. When I press Control/Enter, a note (#2) is created under the first note, but it is not a stacked note. If I enter text for that second note and then press Control/Enter, a new note (#3) is created under the second note, but it is not a stacked note. I know these notes are not stacked because if I delete note #2, note #3 does not shift up.

My assumption is that stacking should work the same regardless of default alignment and that this is a bug. But it is possible that L&L’s intent was that stacking is dependent on a certain alignment. If that is the case - if a certain default alignment is required for correct stacking - then IMHO that should be called out in the user guide.

If you have the time, could you please confirm how it works on a Mac? Thanks.


On a Mac, Alt+Enter creates a new left-aligned stacked note, i.e a note under the previous note.

I guess “stacked notes” isn’t really what you expected. Personally I never expected notes to automagically line up and stick together, because Scapple is a true free-form blackboard to me.

Lunk, my only expectation was that Scapple would work as per the user guide. Currently Win version does not. Thanks again for describing how Mac version works.


Wow, in the Windows version of Scapple, changing default align to become left align (File==> Options ==> New Note ==> Default alignment ==> [1st option] ) completely changes things!

Now, if I just hit Enter after entering text (of any length) you ALWAYS end up with a “stack”. Enter and Control/Enter seem to have exactly the same effect !

This now means that if you create 2+ text boxes using just the keyboard, not only will their left edges align, but also if you move any of the text boxes away using the mouse, all the other text boxes below that box will shift up.

The key to creating “stacks” seems to be to create boxes whose left edges were actually aligned when they were created.

Interestingly alignment of left edges of boxes can be created even if the alignment was centered or right, simply by stuffing enough characters into the text box so as to cause a wrapping of the text. And if boxers are created in this way, one always seems to create stacks, irrespective of default alignment setting.

Personally I really like stacks and find this functionality extremely useful, but with the initial default settingss that I get after 1st installing Scapple, (i.e. Center align??) I found this intensely confusing, because at first blush you don’t get stacks EVER, except occasionally when the next row happens to contain enough text to cause a text-wrap.

Either way, has anyone found ANY different of using Enter instead of Control/Enter? (in the windows version)

Yup, that’s why I jumped into this thread. At first glance, Stacking does not appear to work in Windows.

At 3:35 in L&L’s “Intro to Scapple” video tutorial, you can see a very brief clip of Stacking in action on the Mac.

I guess it is possible that left alignment is also a requirement for Stacking to work on the Mac.