Mesh duplicates using different materials?

Hi there

Is it possible to make duplicates of a mesh but have that mesh linked to different materials?

I’m modelling a real time street scene with identical house meshes but I’d like to colour the houses differently.

By sharing the same house mesh but using different materials I’d like to save memory and maybe speed up drawing?

thanks in advance

You can link a material directly to an object, instead of the mesh itself. But of course no multimaterials, and I haven’t used that option for a while now so I don’t know whether there are more restrictions to that.

Select the object.
Activate the Material context TAB.
See the word “Data”? (If not locate that word, it is actually a drop down selector).
Click “Data” and choose “Object”.
Your object will change to another color, but still be sharing the same mesh data.

And yes, you can do multi-materials this way.

Been there, done that.
In fact if you were to open my attachment, all four cubes are assigned a material under the “object” drop-down. So the Outliner shows something like this:

-Large Mesh
-Red Material
-Large Mesh
-Blue Material
-Small Mesh
-Red Material
-Small Mesh
-Blue Material

What is strange, is that when it is rendered it messes up, and for some objects renders two materials on top of each other. Could someone test this to make sure I am not seeing a platform-specific bug?

I have fixed some of my issues. The 3D view still does not reflect the materials linked to the object. However the rendering works correctly. You can see the updated test *.blend file object_material_test.blend (523 KB) The trick to get rendering working was to UV unwrap and unlink any textures in the UV image editor window.
Would anyone know how to have the textures show in 3D view? It seems like the UV editor modifies the texture properties of all linked meshes, however I want to assign a different material to individual objects.

Currently in 3D view I am seeing a 1 to 1 correlation between a mesh and a material. When rendering however I am seeing a 1 to many correlation, which is correct.

Glad you figured it out. I too do not like the “dual” method Blender uses to display materials. It is possible, as you just discovered, to be looking at one texture and rendering another.

It should simply be unified, automatically by the internals of Blender. What you get in a render is what you should see in the viewport. That is what makes Cinema4D so powerful.

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