Replace geo for instances

I imported an FBX fil that has tons of plants in it. Blender didn’t recognize them as instances. Is there a way I could switch the plants of the same kind as instances keeping the same translation, rotation and scale?

Yes. As objects, linking the data and then convert them to dupli-face. As unconnected meshes, duplicate and separate one which will be the source object, then edit them all so that each is left with one quad which gives the loc/rot/scale, and then use duplifaces to put an instance on those.

That sound quite complicated for somthing that should be simple. I can’t edit them all though. Too many plants. I want to make this automated.

Select all the identical objects, then Ctrl L and ‘Object Data’ .

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It can be simple. But since I can’t see what you’re working with, I covered the simple and the hard case.

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CTRL-L Object Data did the work! Thanks to all!

That’s not what you were asking. Linking object data makes linked duplicates, which instances the data. Procedural duplication, such as duplifaces, uses object instancing, which saves more memory.

Sorry is I wasn’t clear enough. What I wanted was to replace all the plants from one master plant. The copies you keep the same translation, rotation and scale as the original plants I just replaces.

CTRL L, object data did exactly that. And since they are instances, they don’t take memory. My renders when from 15 gig to 778 megs by instancing the plants.

I’m talking about terminology. Ctrl+L -> data makes linked duplicates, not instances.

Linked duplicates share object data https://docs.blender.org/manual/en/latest/editors/3dview/object/editing/duplication.html

And the object instancing options are linked libraries, particle system duplication, and procedural duplication

Just to be clear, linked duplicates works for you yes, but you asked for instances which are different. Instances reference the whole object, where as linked duplicates have unique objects and may have different materials and modifiers

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Ok thanks for the info. I come from Maya and Maya doesn’t have these distinctions. Either they are separated objects or instances, like linked object.