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Importing geometry

To import an existing geometry inside of botcha you can either use the import command that is found when no object is selected in the 3D view or you can drag and drop the model into the application (if the file type is supported).

Botcha natively support a wide variety of 3D and 2D file types. While the free version of the tool will only support a handful, when you upgrade to the complete version of botcha you will be able to load a large range of files. Not all file formats are created equal. When you import different files you may obtain different results.

Import meshes

Supported 3D file types

Here is a small rundown of some details for each 3D file format:

  • STL, PLY: these file formats represent unstructured triangles. Botcha will attempt to rebuild the structure by welding the mesh automatically when loading. These types of file do not have UVs and therefore will require an unwrapping or UV generation
  • OBJ, FBX, LXO, DAE, BLEND, GLB: from these formats botcha will load the geometry, topology and UVs. If you modelled something in a 3D toolkit it is reasonable to assume that all your geometry will be loaded properly if you use these formats to exchange data.
  • 3DM: if you are using CAD data Botcha will be able to load most of it. The meshes and their topology will be properly loaded, if they have UV also those will be loaded. If you have NURBS or surface data and that data is tessellated (i.e. by using the rendered viewport in Rhino) also the surface data will be loaded as mesh. Curves will be skipped.

A note on geometry

To understand how botcha works you have to understand a bit how the geometry is handled internally within the tool. Each mesh several set of properties, of which we are interested in discussing two.

  • Vertices: represent the 3D data (i.e. points) of which the mesh is composed of. These vertices are connected to form triangles in a mesh network that we call "topology". When you interact with the 3D viewport the software will draw these triangles on the screen for you to see.
  • UVs (aka texture coordinates): represent a 2D version of the mesh. This is particularly important when drawing an image on top of the mesh. The process to obtain the 2D data from the 3D object is called unwrapping or parametrization.

When you are working with botcha you will need to make sure that your mesh has valid UVs in order to properly draw on top of it. We provide automated way of generating a 2D parametrization from a 3D mesh but the mesh need to be properly cut so that you can unwrap it. Think as taking the surface of an object and squashing it to a table.