To be able to fully reconstruct the part of the site destroyed by excavating, the surfaces of the excavated deposits have to be fully documented in 3D (``single surface planning’’). During recent years we developed a GIS based procedure for the digital documentation of stratigraphic excavations. The outstanding importance of 3D single-surface recording for the stratigraphic record demands the use of high resolution documentation techniques. During the last three years, we have been testing the use 3D laser scanners combined with digital imagery as a recording tool on archaeological excavations using various instruments (Riegl LMS Z210i, Riegl LMS Z360). They showed a high reliability and efficiency for topographic single surface recording in every day archaeological work.