I'm trying to get Blender to export .ply files with vertex colors and triangular faces.

First, I assign my model a material, and change its diffuse color. Then, in edit mode, with my whole model selected, I press Ctrl+T to triangulate the faces. Then, I go to Export > Stanford (.ply), and making sure include vertex colors is selected, I export it.

However, when I look at the file, it has no color data, and the faces are not triangles (The faces consist of a seemingly random number of indices each).

Am I doing anything wrong? I've tried searching quite a bit but can't seem to find anything. Thanks


1 Answer 1


A few things here:

The diffuse color you assigned isn't part of the Vertex Color content, they are distinct from eachother. If you want to give a single colour to all faces, then go to Vertex Paint mode and masking mode, select all faces, then pick a colour from the colour-wheel and press Shift + K . That will set the vertex colour for all faces. and Save.

enter image description here

For triangulation, you might have to make a duplicate of your model and triangulate, then press save, then export. Else I think the exporter will export the mesh's data from the most recent saved state (that wasn't triangulated yet).

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you. I got the color working just fine now, but i still can't get it to export triangular faces, even when I triangulate it, save it, close it, open and then export it. $\endgroup$
    – Robo11
    May 23, 2015 at 19:12
  • $\begingroup$ you can test the geometry generated by blenders .ply exporter by reimporting it (File->Import .ply ) . To me it looks like it triangulates just fine, perhaps your importer program is auto "quading" ? What version of Blender? if not 2.74, get it anyway. $\endgroup$
    – zeffii
    May 23, 2015 at 19:19
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ you can open the .ply file in a text editor to see exactly what kind of data it contains. some lines are x, y, z, r, g, b and others are the indices..(line is prefixed with the number of vertices to follow) .. $\endgroup$
    – zeffii
    May 23, 2015 at 19:24
  • $\begingroup$ Ok, it was working fine. Was just reading the file wrong. Thank you vary much, you saved me quite a lot of work. $\endgroup$
    – Robo11
    May 23, 2015 at 19:29
  • $\begingroup$ @zeffii I just tried using dynamic paint to transfer to vertex color from texture, but when I exported to .ply, all the RBG colors are (255,255,255). $\endgroup$
    – June Wang
    Sep 24, 2019 at 19:17

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