Changing VTF/VMT Files, do I need to compile mdl?

I’m learning (or at least trying to) how to spawn custom models and vehicles and edit them. I’ve made the changes to VMT/VTF files and when I replace them it works perfectly. But what if I want to make a copy and a new VMT/VTF…where can I find the reference that acts like a path to a vehicle script. I checked all the scripts I could find (this is a vehicle) and didn’t find any reference for them other than the mdl path. I found an old source wiki that mentioned compiled the QC of a model to set it’s vmt/vtf path. That’s fine but I don’t know where to find the existing information of the vehicle I am trying to edit.

Maybe I’m over complicating this but my question is : Where do I find and change the path for a model’s vmt/vtf files?

Doing it without recompiling is called hexing (because of the way you edit the file). How to Hex Tutorial

Basically you open the .mdl file in a hex editor and change it there, but it can go awry if you want to change to a longer path; changing to a path with the same amount of letters is easy.

Thanks for that, I’ll give it a shot when I get home… Now let’s just say that my path has more or less characters… Is there a mdl compiling tutorial a little easier than the old valve one?

You can always create a new material and simply use SetMaterial on the model if you dont feel like hexing it just for a material:

http://puu.sh/kzhan/960c678d4f.jpg

5 minutes in photoshop then Truck:SetMaterial( “path/to/new/texture” )

  • Truck is implied reference to the object you want to change material on.

Thanks for the response. I’m like 90% comprehending your explanation. The only thing I need to finish is understanding what name to use for the object I want to change. Is it the item in the script that is running (like the autorun.lua’s for a vehicle). Where do I find the object name to reference? Also, does it matter if I put this in the txt file for the vehicle or can it just go in any script as long as I reference the correct object and path?