I have two meshes in their own blend files, ones is a very muscular male and another one is a curvy female. I'm working on the rigging and animation of the female and I've managed to make some simple animations for testing. I want to transfer the rig of the female with its animations, shape keys and etc... to the male mesh.

how could I approach this?, I've already tried with shift-D but I think I did it wrong because I couldn't transfer the rig to the other file.

I'm using blender 2.69.

  • $\begingroup$ you can use Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V to transfer data between two blend files. $\endgroup$
    – Vader
    Commented Mar 2, 2014 at 21:39
  • $\begingroup$ i've tried doing that too, i open the two separate meshes in two separate windows and i Ctrl+C and then try to Ctrl+V to the other window but it says that theres no data copied into buffer or something like that $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 3, 2014 at 1:11
  • $\begingroup$ What OS are you using? $\endgroup$
    – Vader
    Commented Mar 3, 2014 at 1:11
  • $\begingroup$ I'm using Windows 7 $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 3, 2014 at 2:38

2 Answers 2


Duplicating an armature with ShiftD only works while in object mode and it will only create a duplicate armature in the same file. Also CtrlC only copies the armature object in object mode, in pose mode it will copy the bone locations allowing you to copy the pose.

In your case, with two models in a separate files, you could also open the second blend file then Select Append from the file menu. Link will use the same armature while append will copy the armature into the current file.

enter image description here

When you select a blend file it will show the following list -

enter image description here

First go into object and select the armature you want. Then append again and go into Action and select the actions you want to import into the new file.

As for shape keys, they are part of the mesh object data. If the two mesh objects have similar topology you may be able to copy the shape keys between models. You could append the first mesh object and then try to copy the shapekeys then delete the first object.

I think you may find it easier to append the second object to the same file as the first one, duplicate the armature, copy shapekeys etc. Then save a duplicate copy of the blend and remove one model from each file.


I am adding this answer because I had been looking to solve a similar problem, but I have solved it in a different way than what I think the asker had in mind. The problem I wanted to solve was that I wanted one complex master armature that would work on all my different models.

Instead of duplicating the armature, I linked it from the first rig. I then lined up the first model and new model and duplicated the vertex groups via Data Transfer modifier.

This makes it possible to keep adding to your main armature. After you've updated the armature, go to your other models' Data Transfer modifier and Generate Data Layers again.

I'm by no means an expert so if this is a poor way of doing things, please let myself and any future readers know.

See this answer for details.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .