What is DECALmachine?
The second major update to DECALmachine for Blender 2.80 has arrived with DECALmachine 1.9
DECALmachine is a blender addon, which through mesh Decals, allows for surface detailing in a very non-committal, non-destructive, UV-less way. And as such, it represents an alternative approach to hard surface texturing.
Read on below for an overview of DECALmachine's tools and ideas.
Keep in mind
The focus of DECALmachine is speed and flexibility in terms of Design and Detailing. Depending on how far you intend to take your designs, and especially if you, intend to use complex shader node setups or do complex texturing such as weathering, this might not be the best workflow, unless you are targeting a deferred rendering solution with mesh decal support, which allows for selective channel blending, instead of just alpha blending as in Blender's Eeevee and Cycles.
If you need to get in touch with me to report an error, report tool misbehavior or have another problem READ THIS FIRST.
For installation help, see the Installation page.
For questions you have or problems you may run into, see the FAQ.
To discuss using DECALmachine, please use the Blender Artists and polycount threads.
For decal creation, jump to Decal Creation.
For decal expoirt, jump to Decal Export.
To learn about all of DECALmachine's features and tools, you can either check out this playlist on youtube, or better - access the same videos through the sidebar to the left.
- quick and precise raycast-based Decal insertion
- easily select decals by parent object or by type
- automatic material matching, parenting, normal transfer and collection creation
- unlimited decal libraries + flexible asset loader layout
- create all four decal types directly in blender, including batch creation of info decals from folders of images
- export decals by baking their textures to the parent object uv space
- quickly adjust height, decal mesh or UV rotation and much more using the convenient modal adjust tool
- enforce default settings scene-wide and change them quickly in the DECALmachine panel in the sidebar
- store decal textures on disk or directly in the blend file
- use decals on flat surfaces and project or shrinkwrap them on curved surfaces
- slice decal panel strips boolean-style
- or create these panel decals from grease pencil strokes or edge selections
- use panel decals to cut the underlying mesh
- benefit from parallax adding convincing depth to normal mapped decals, even in realtime in Blender's Eevee viewport
- retain sharp details at all scales, independent of texture resolution, via UV-less object based detailing
- take advantage of decals being objects, by using modifiers like mirror and array
- add Decals while editing groups in GroupPro
- hide decal materials (incl. in Batch Ops and Hard Ops) and textures
- automatically organize decals in collections
- 108 Decals included
- best documentation in the business
With DECALmachine you can avoid getting bogged down with technicalities and monotonous, laborious clean up work related to mesh topology.
Instead you can just place your details, re-arrange them at any time, project them on curved surfaces or explore paneling, graphics, logos etc.
DECALmachine - in essence - is object-based, UV-less texturing, or rather detailing.
Learn more about what a decal actually is and how it works.
This hard surface detailing workflow is incredibly fast and versatile, very easy to handle and manipulate, without comitting to any decisions, making it a fantastic choice for 3d concept design workflows.
DECALmachine can be used on its own, or to complement other hard surface workflows, such as a
bevel and boolean based approach used by HardOps and BoxCutter or the classic subdivision surface approach.
It all works, it will even work on models exported from Solids/NURBS/CAD based tools such as MoI3D or Fusion 360!
The beauty of decals is, your results are not limited texture sizes - details remain sharp, even when seen from up-close.
In addition to the tools to simplify and automate working with mesh Decals, DECALmachine supplies 108 Decals, ready to be used, as well as decal creation tools, to make your own - directly in Blender without the need for ANY outside tools.
As of version 1.9 decals can also be exported via baking.