View Full Version : Mirrors and Rigs is it the right way?

03 March 2003, 03:26 AM
I havent found any documentation that states there are adverse effects on mirroring Rigs so I thought I might ask...

Scenario: Left Leg Rig with IK, Helpers, Wired etc.

Can I copy my entire Left Leg Rig and mirror it so it will be the setup for the Right Leg? I know that I will have to rename the parts but since the legs are working the same is it feasible? will there be issues when its time to animate, or should I just rebuild the right side?

Even though Im trying to learn the Bone system and rig from scratch Im still looking to make the workflow as productive as possible.

Thanks in advance.


03 March 2003, 08:15 PM
That's a good question. I've heard plenty about not mirroring bones, etc., so I'm not sure. And thus, I've never mirrored an entire leg rig before. BUT..... I just tried it on a rig and as long as the leg is parented to a dummy or point, it seemed to work fine. Please someone tell us if there would be problems down the road from this.


03 March 2003, 08:23 PM
well i too really wud liek to know abt this questn..maybe wil chk back aftr sometime for some replies..anyways.. KidMesh which app do u use.. i tried to mail u one info... u hv disabled mail in ur profile...anyways.. :-)

:applause: :wip:

03 March 2003, 11:52 PM
what always worked fine for me was the following.
when I completely finished one part of a rig with all its controlObjects, expressions, etc. (for example a leg), I isolated it from the rest, exported it with all its history, imported it back into maya, grouped it and scaled the group -1 in the direction I wanted the mirrored leg to appear. only thing that I have to do then is to setUp my control objects again to get correct behaviour (especially on rotations).
cheers, tom.

03 March 2003, 12:56 AM
From my experience mirroring bones in MAX is a bad idea.
You have to make this hakky dummy to hold it all together and it will eventually screw up.

I found it was easier to set up one side by making points that you'll eventually snap your bones to, then mirroring those points accross to the other side and snapping the other sides bones to them.

In maya though it seemed to be OK to mirror, and it would actually be helpfull sometimes. For example you could select both shoulder bones and rotate them at the sime time to get a shrug or somthing. Sorry that's kind of hard to explain....

03 March 2003, 08:27 PM
Originally posted by Sfinktinator
From my experience mirroring bones in MAX is a bad idea.
You have to make this hakky dummy to hold it all together and it will eventually screw up.

What or when does it screw up? I've only tried mirroring bones with HI/IK and a few controllers (no expressions or wiring, etc.), and the simple stuff seems to work so far. Just would like to know where you've found problems so I'll no what to look out for.

Using max 5.1


03 March 2003, 09:18 PM
Hey guys thats a pretty good question. I have found it bad to mirror or duplicate whole legs, joints its fine but legs or arms with ik or expressions etc. is bad. From my own experience I found greater problems in the skinning, animating and a whole lot more down the line is more time consuming to fix the problems afterwards than making it easier. Plus if u are a bigginer rigger the best way to rig fast effiecient and surrely is make a pipeline, in maya its very important the way u set up joints and what you do with them before you take the next step. What I would do is mirror the joints and then do the connections all over again, I dont recomend duplicating it with expressions or ik handels, dont be lazy you will pay for it in the long run.

03 March 2003, 06:49 PM
I found out that it is possible to mirror bones and IK in max with no problem. Its in the tutorial section. :bounce:

Should have looked there first of course. Thanks for all the responses anyway.


03 March 2003, 10:25 PM
yeah, but what I'm still worried about is the problems that people have said they run into. I'm assuming these would be problems with expression controllers, script controllers on bones, etc. But for a mirror of a simple ik leg rig, the discreet manual's tut does work fine as far as I've seen.


03 March 2003, 11:21 PM
I will have to try it again it did not work last time I tried mirroring a fully operational leg. Thanks for the feed back.

03 March 2003, 01:34 AM
Did you have other things set-up on the leg besides HI/IK -- I mean expressions or contraints or script controllers?


03 March 2003, 07:48 AM
In maya i seem to have probs whenever it's just more than the bones. Even the IKs will messup (as with control objects). If I remember correctly id also get probs with the object's local orientation (like if i select the new left and origional right and translate up, one would go down). But there could be many reasons for that, such as that orient script i run. Or whether i was am in local or object translate mode. Guess i need to play with it more, in the past ive rigged to get it done.

But i can automatically rename ltJoint to rtJoint now!!:applause:

03 March 2003, 04:12 PM
I have NEVER had much success with mirroring rigs. It seems that the the orients get all messed up

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