View Full Version : controller rotation axis?

03 March 2005, 10:31 AM
hey everyone,

I was wondering what techniques are out there to match the rotation axis of a controller object to the rotation axis of a joint? I know that I can rotate the object's axis, however, this creates non-zero rotation values for the object. Freezing the object's transforms sets the rotation axis back to that of the world.

I know its possible to group the controller object and use the extra transform node to rotate it to a different orientation. But I'm always afraid that the extra transform could cause problems.

Any thoughts? Am I missing a simple solution?

Thanks for any help.

03 March 2005, 10:50 AM
Hi man,

look at my website ( and go to Tips&Tricks section. You will find my script called jk_orientControl. Use this in Maya. First select control, than the bone and apply the script.

And there is more about rigging, Iīm constantly adding new tips and scripts.


03 March 2005, 11:27 AM

Thanks for the quick response syntetik.... nice script for automating the grouping method. You should make the attributes of the "OFF node" non-keyable and throw all your code into a global proc.

I'm suspecting the grouping method is really the only way to do this. But I could be very wrong.

03 March 2005, 11:51 AM
Hi FiendishVegan,

thanks for tip. Actualy this script is ment to be a button on your shelf, so local proc is ok. Also the _OFF group will be never selected by the animator, because it should be parent-constrained to some bone, so it doesnīt have to have hidden transform attributes. The animator will only see and will be able to select the control.

I have been fighting with this orientation problem for some time and group offset seems to be nice solution. Orienting the control itself would be possible, but not with zeroed rotations.
I have studied J.Schleifer work and Paul Thuriotīs from Tippet and they use "group relativity" very often. Itīs quick and easy for system performance.
Groups were actualy used more in past, when Maya constraints didnīt have direct Maintain Offset option and Parent Constrain was not in store.


03 March 2005, 02:03 PM
thanks for the quick response again syntetik,

I've been thinking about it and you're right that this is the best method. Since the extra transform node is necessary to constrain the controller to follow an FK chain it would be counterproductive to get rid of it. :thumbsup: Even if you could orient the object to the joint without it you would still need the transform on top.

CGTalk Moderation
03 March 2005, 02:03 PM
This thread has been automatically closed as it remained inactive for 12 months. If you wish to continue the discussion, please create a new thread in the appropriate forum.