CAD Workflow


I am an architect migrating to Blender for Arch Viz, so far Blender has been working nicely, but I would like to know what is the best way to manage design changes. Is there a way to actualize the cad geometry after it has been changed but keep all the blender materials? I want to avoid having to re-apply materials everytime that there are changes on the design…

Thanks in advance.

Hi De_Gutsch,
if you are using Rhino you can look at this:

Or you can explain a bit which is your workflow.
I don’t know other solutions besides that addon but maybe someone else can help you.
1 Like


Thanks for your input, good to know about the Rhino import might be useful later, but I use Archicad.

The workflow is very simple, I save the 3d model, in this case sketchup and import it in Blender. The problem is that this is an iterative process and the model has to be changed many times during the design phase (and sometimes even after, if you are an architect you know this) and would like to avoid the hassle of having to re-apply all the materials again every time that the model changes. Using Cinema 4D instead of Blender there is a way to link the Archicad model and when it changes Cinema updates the geometry but respects the assigned materials.


@De_Gutsch I teach interior design and as long as there is no live sync no what you ask for will always result into redo work.

Frustrating I agree.

I teach my students a process where everything is modular interior / exterior walls for example.

Still there isn’t any livelinks for Blender between Archicad. This is sad.

This script, it does not import anything from Rhino, and only an experimental script and practically useless isn’t a valid alternative, you create confusion in new users and give them discouragement instead of support to their questions.

As already other said a workflow with Archicad to get and updated changes inside Blender isn’t yet possible, this is only possible if you works with linked Bender file that is updated in other Blender file with linked library.
I suggest to lookup also in this add-on BlenderBIM, that have some feature for architectural model exchange in IFC this allow you to get a basic updated of the materials inside your Archicad in the Blender IFC, but you have to make always changes shader, if need that for the rendering.

Well, sorry, but I really don’t get it.
I’ve written my post about 8 months ago, at lot of time considering the Blender development pace.
At that time the 3dm importer was working, even tough not fully functional, and AFAIK was the first script linking a Cad file to Blender.
With the 2.93 release “…the embedded Python interpreter got updated from 3.7 to 3.9. This breaks modules with CPython parts in, like rhino3dm…” (Nathan Letwory, the addon author)
Anyway, I cannot understand how I could create confusion to De_Gutsch since, replying to my post where I asked more information about his workflow, he wrote that he is using Archicad and not Rhino :slight_smile:
Happy blending

Hi, even if it’s imported some Rhino geometry, from the beginning it was never a useful tool, just a personal experiment that was published, and you never reached a level that could consider for doing what needed for a work, and more what is asked is specific and detailed in these two points, of its specific request, which unfortunately the importing of Rhino files cannot do

  • best way to manage design changes
  • I want to avoid having to re-apply materials everytime that there are changes on the design


In 2021 still there is no way to set up this workflow. This process is so painful. Any updates?