Blender only has one choice of smooth algorithm which can be a bit frustrating at times. Blender’s smooth can limited by the world X,Y and Z axes which is great, but it would be better if you could also constrain smoothing by object local axes or transform orientations. What about if you could also mask smoothing by vertex groups, or stop the shrinkage effect by using algorithms which don’t shrink objects or automatically shrink/flatten each vertex to retain the object’s volume, or even if you could change the way smoothing handles non-manifold edges and get smooth to leave them be or ignore them completely? How about the edges of the selection – blender currently pretends that anything which isn’t selected doesn’t exist, but what if you wanted to take account for the unselected vertices but not actually change their position? All of these were things which were bugging me last week when I was modeling the smooth curved body panels of the train in ‘tube’. I put my mind to it and coded a new add-on for blender which provides much more advanced options for all you smooth operators out there. Introducing the “Full Fat Smoothie Maker”!
All these options might be a bit confusing to the first time user, and a lot of getting to grips with the tool is just experimenting. There are well over 1000 ways to combine the basic choices! I produced a quick reference chart which shows how the different algorithms handle some difficult test objects which I created. A high-res version of this is in the zip download.
As always let me know if you find any bugs in the comments and happy blending!