System indents and staff names

In a multi-flow piece I’d like the first system of the first flow to contain full instrument names but to have no indent (the names provide enough indentation). In subsequent flows I’d like no instrument names but a small indent. Any setting to show instrument names without an indent applies to all flows and the only way I’ve found to make the subsequent movements (flows) to have no instrument names but a small indent is to insert a system break at the beginning and change the setting in the properties panel. Fortunately I can copy these to the beginnings of the next movements. The only way to get system indents at the beginning of the next movements is to do it manually in Engrave mode by enabling note spacing and dragging the first system handle to the right. I suppose I could have done this the other way around: a small system indent at the beginning of all flows which I remove in the first. This all seems kind of roundabout for something which would seem to be fairly standard practice. Am I missing something?

Layout Options > Staves & Systems has a setting for the indent at the beginning of a flow. Then change the first Flow with a System Break to show Labels.

I think the indent you add in Layout options>Staves and Systems should fulfill your needs : it won’t appear in the first flow, since the instrument names will probably be grater than this indent (and it is not added to the instrument names offset), and it will appear in subsequent flows, provided you don’t want the names to appear.
[Edit] Ben was faster than me. I guess you’ll know what to do now !

I was wrong about doing it ‘the other way around’. One can’t change a system indentation to have a negative number, so I have to set the indentation to zero for all flows and indent the beginning of subsequent movements manually, unless I’m missing something.

You both got in while I was experimenting! I just tried what you suggested and the indent is added to the instrument names, so I get an overly large indentation at the beginning of the first flow.

That may be the case, but if Flow 1 is “the odd one out” from all the other flows, it makes sense to do the manual adjustments only to Flow 1.

As I just discovered, one cannot move an indented system to the left or ‘un-indent’ it. In the situation I outlined above, one has to set all the flows to have no indent and perform the indentation at the beginning of each new flow. I can imagine this not being so obvious if each flow is to show the instrumentation, but in chamber music this is seldom, if ever, necessary. It’s too bad Dorico adds the indentation to the instrument names.

Do you need Abbreviated names? I’m wondering whether you could do an indent with “invisible” staff labels, so that they have width, but don’t show…?

That’s a clever idea, Ben! I’ll give that a try later.

Sorry Vaughan… I was not in front of my machine when I answered. I messed up with the minimum ident thing, which is not what you need here…

I have made a note of the suggestion that the indent at the start of the flow should optionally only take effect if there are no staff labels.

Thank you, Daniel.

I think I’m in a similar situation… I have several flows, but I only want to show the full instrument names in the first flow, and no instrument names for subsequent flows - but where do I set that?

On the Staves and Systems page of Layout Options, set no staff labels to appear there; that will take care of every flow following the first. Then to show staff labels only at the start of the first flow, select the initial note or rest at the start of the first flow and insert a system break (in Engrave mode, type Shift+S), which will have no visible effect on the layout but will cause a system break signpost to appear. With that signpost selected, open the Properties panel and activate the Staff labels property, which you can now set to Full to show full instrument names just on that first system of the first flow.

That worked! I had noticed the “none”-option in Staves and Systems but I hadn’t figured that you could then show it again later on. Thank you so much for your help and the quick reply! Cheers!