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OpenGL Loading meshes and textures

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OK, this is may be a galactically stupid query and brand me as a feeb newb for all Eternity. I'm really hacked off by having to find/write my own routines for loading model meshes and textures to use with OpenGL. I sort of adopted the Wavefront .obj format and have been using Nate Robins's GLM library. I've also written my own file parser and have tried modifying GLM to use the stl, but they're a bit slow. I'm using VC++ Express Edition, and I'm now considering using an existing 3d engine, partly so I don't have to do the hard work any more, and partly to gain experience of using additional tools and api's. Does this seem like a reasonable course of action? And of the existing 3d engines (e.g. Crystal Space, Ogre, Irrlicht) which would be the best for this? That is, easiest to learn, fewest includes for mesh and texture import and plays well with others since I'm considering taking a turn with ODE at some point, too. Or is really a case of trying each to see which suits me the best? Is it possible to migrate a project from one engine to another? TIA Carl

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