Guide Mesh <> Final Mesh Editor

by 1P2D in Scripts and Addons


EDITOR  V1.4.2  (changelog)

The ideal companion for Hard Surface/Vehicle Modelers using the Shrinkwrap modifier


Click here to get the Free Lite Version.
This add-on works best with Machin3tools (free).
This add-on is built upon CGMaster's shrinkwrap workflow.


The Guide Mesh <> Final Mesh Editor is a valuable tool for 3D modelers who relying on the Shrinkwrap workflow but are looking for a less destructive, more concept modeling-friendly approach. Originally built as a simple script to edit both Guide Mesh and Final Mesh at the same time, it is progressively evolving into a suite of useful shortcuts and presets that should help you work on multiple concept designs.


Surface with cutline: without and with shrinkwrap modifier on

Why did I create this addon?

After following CGMasters course and a regular use of the Shrinkwrap modifier, I found it unsuitable for concept designers working on evolving designs. On the other hand, booleans, although fast for cutouts, are inconsistent and can cause topology issues. To address this, I created an add-on that enables quick iterations while maintaining detailed surfaces and ensuring topology integrity. Here's a comparison table for the different workflows available.

What does the script do?

It provides you a set of useful shortcuts available via a Pie Menu and a menu in the N-panel, which facilitate simultaneous on-the-go editing, retrofitting or readjustment of both the Guide Mesh and Final Mesh. Although the script requires a little time to adapt, it is a very straight forward pie menu (CTRL+Shift+Q) which offers you a bunch of functions that all revolve around the same goal: to make your life easier while working on WIP design of yours.

What is the typical worfklow?

Pie Menu:

  1. Setup your Guide Mesh / Final Mesh relationship
  2. Detail your Final Mesh
  3. Tweak both meshes with Dual Mesh Edit. You can:
    - use the lasso selection tool to pick overlapping geometries with x-ray or pass-through on
    - work in isolation with "Isolate Guide Mesh" and "Isolate Final Mesh"
    - select underlying geometries with "Select Matching Geometries"
    - bevel or extrude simultaneously your selected matching geometries (parallel loop cutting doesn't work)
    - cut through both meshes using the Knife tool with cut through enabled (be mindful of your camera angle as the cut through doesn't have a distance threshold)
  4. Bevel your panel gaps using the Bevel Weight shortcut
  5. Use 'Autosnap' (available in Dual Mesh Edit Mode) or Snap'Adjust (available in Object Mode) to conform one mesh onto another as best as possible


  1. Iterate by creating another Version of your work
  2. Manage your versions with the Version Manager
  3. Optimize your file if it gets heavy with the Optimization panel

Important note!

To ensure proper functionality, the script depends on a specific naming convention that allows it to identify your Guide Mesh, Final Mesh, and their respective collections. The same applies to 'design versions' (managed via the Version Manager). This is automatically done by the script, but in case you're shuffling your outliner, please keep that in mind:
- Your design versions (N-Panel) are detecting any collections called "Guide Mesh <> Final Mesh V(x)"
- Each design version should have a "Guide Mesh V(x)" and a "Final Mesh V(x)" subcollection
- Each Guide Mesh should be named "Guide Mesh V(x)", and each Final Mesh should be named "Final Mesh V(x)", and they should place in their corresponding collection


  • PIE MENU: Guide Mesh <> Final Mesh Setup

Start the Guide Mesh <> Final Mesh setup either from one or two existing meshes. The script will: rename the meshes, add the required modifiers and vertex groups, parent them and assign them to their respective collections. It will also make the Guide Mesh invisible in Render Mode, and display it in wireframe.

  • PIE MENU: Dual Mesh Edit Mode

This mode allows you to edit both mesh at the same time (use the lasso tool in X-ray view). By doing so, you can select overlapping geometries across both mesh. Dual Mesh edit mode will store your Mesh's visibility settings - so if you work with your Guide Mesh hidden in object mode, it will store its state and restore it once back to object mode.
Blender's X-RAY view: Alt + Z
Machin3tools pass through mode: Tab (bottom right corner)

  • PIE MENU: Isolate Mesh

Working on two very similar meshes can get confusing. While in Dual Mesh Edit Mode, this function allows you to isolate the mesh that you want to focus on. It displays a text at the top of the viewport as a reminder.

  • PIE MENU: Select Matching Geometries

Based on your selection, it detects the matching vertices, edges and faces on the other mesh. Can be useful when you want to do design changes requiring extrusion or beveling on both mesh at the same time. Keep in mind this tool is purely based on geometric coordinates, so any vertices, edges or faces present in one mesh only, will not be synced.

  • PIE MENU: AutoSnap' - Edit mode only

Think of it as an automated version of the Snap'Adjust mode down below. While in Dual Edit Mode, use this function to Automatically snap any vertices from one mesh to another, within a certain threshold set in the addon preferences (default threshold is 1mm). In the example below, I intentionally misplace a vertex on the Guide Mesh, then use the Autosnap' (Guide onto Final) feature (it snaps back to the nearest vertex from the Final Mesh).

  • PIE MENU: Snap'Adjust Mode (Manual Mode)

This oddly satisfying mode makes one mesh non-selectable, but enables you to snap the vertices of the other mesh onto the locked mesh (vertex and edge snapping are enabled by default). Use this in case AutoSnap' creates unwanted snapping results.

  • N-PANEL: Version Manager

Version 1.4.2 introduces an enhanced collection system that enables concurrent work on multiple variants, eliminating the need for creating separate files for different design variations.
- Select, hide, duplicate, or delete a Version along with its entire content.
- Assign a Version to the add-on's pie menu (the pie menu's shortcuts can only focus on one version at a time)

  • PIE MENU: Vent Creator (Alpha)

The Vent Creator is a tool that performs a series of operations to provide a good topology for creating an extrusion to your final mesh. It creates an additional edge loop around your selection, with an outset of 1mm, and extrudes your original selection multiple times in the desired axis(X, -X, Y, -Y, Z, or -Z). It will also assign your original selection and every new extruded edge to a "Vent" vertex group which is excluded from the Solidify and Shrinkwrap modifiers. As the surface transition depends heavily on your mesh, the "Edge Transition Helper" is a shortcut that temporarily turns on all modifiers in edit mode, allowing you to adjust the weight of your vertices to see the effect in real time. It is recommended to focus solely on the original selection's vertices.

  • Other features:

  • Optimize for Animation: temporarily disable all shrinkwrap modifiers and reduce subdivision levels to 1 for smoother animation previews
  • Find Nearest Preset Viewpoint: detects the orientation of your current 3D viewport and snaps it to the nearest preset orthographic viewpoint
  • (Edit Mode) Zero Out: scaled the selected geometries down to 0 on the X, Y or Z axis (flattens it basically)
  • (Edit Mode) Edge Menu: shortcut to set/remove Bevel Weight and Crease to the selected edges
  • (Object Mode) Backup and Bake: creates a duplicate of your Final Mesh in a locked "Archive" collection, then bake every modifiers on the original Final Mesh
  • (Optional - Object Mode) Restore object's viewport display settings: in case you want to reset your selected mesh' viewport display settings

            • What's next?

            • New CG Masters Course: Chris is about to release an updated version of his notorious car modeling course, including new and more reliable workflows, notably related to the solidify modifier. I might update the script accordingly.
            • Dual Mesh Edit Mode is ironically the weakest feature of the script, as it still expects the user to edit both mesh manually. I am currently trying to figure a better workflow.

              Hope you will find this addon useful. Happy blending!

              Sales 20+
              Customer Ratings 3
              Average Rating
              Published 2 months ago
              Blender Version 3.0, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5
              License GPL
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