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Learning Blender -> Unity workflow, creating a simple vehicle.

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I have started to learn Unity3D and have got to a point where I want to try and import my own 3d models for use in Unity. Being a coder I have little experience with 3D modelling and the workflows involved in general but I thought I would give it a shot with a simple project to learn the work involved. The goal is to 
 1. Create a tank vehicle model in Blender
 2. Apply a simple texture to it (a single color texture would work).
 3. Apply an armature to it. (Body -> Turret -> barrel)
 4. Allow its movement to be controlled using a script. (Move forward, turn left/right)
 5. Get the gun barrel in the tank to point at a certain point.
So far I have created the model with 3 objects in blender (body, turret, barrel), applied an armature with 3 bones to move the turret and barrel and attempted to save as FBX and import into Unity. I haven't attempted the coding part yet (getting the barrel to aim, or moving the model).
The first thing I noticed when importing is that the armature for the turret and barrel have rotations applied already. Is this also imported from Blender? Is the best practice to start everything with 0 rotation in Blender? 
Also is there any way to modify the asset from within blender, for instance modifying the transform of one of the objects in the asset. I can do this when creating an instance but it seems I can't from the asset panel. Is it generally a good idea to create a parent object for the imported asset in Unity and apply transforms on the instance of the child asset, then saving the parent object as a prefab?
Finally is the way I am creating the 3D Model the best way I can do it for my use case? I am very inexperienced with Blender and was wondering if there are any guides or workflows I should follow when creating stuff in Blender for use in Unity.
I have attached my Blender scene and FBX in a zip, any advice on what I am doing would be greatly appreciated. 
It is also available for d/l here:

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On thing to keep in mind is Blender and Unity work in different coordinate systems.


This script fixes that if you are interested.


One tip I can give you is, always import your exported FBX back into blender and see if it still works.  The exporter is already... subpar.  

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