View Full Version : Looking to Rig wires connected at both ends.

12 December 2008, 02:08 PM
I'm trying to work out a problem with rigging wires and tubes connected on a robot.
The robot is a byped female, with wires and tubes running from the back of the skull to the different joints of the spine. I'm trying to find a tutorial that will connect the wires/tubes to the head and spine but keep them connected when either the head or spine is moved. I want the wire/tube to bend with the movement instead of it stretching or folding. I've tried basic ik handles and splines without following any info, but they all pose different problems with the joint chains stertching. Just wondering if anyone has come across a tutorial to do this. If so, a link would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for your time.


12 December 2008, 04:15 AM
you can setup stretchy spline-ik then try to link it to the body parts or even handle it with any kind of expersions, another way is using Cloth sim that let you to do the Job.

12 December 2008, 03:08 PM
The simplest would be to just setup a spline IK. Then, you can have one control joint at the head and one at the shoulder, and weight the spline's cv's accordingly to get the motion you want. But there are lots of other ways to do it. Look into Jiggle deformers and the like.

12 December 2008, 04:41 PM
set up the wires with the stretchy IK, then put clusters on the spline so that you can control how the wire deforms to get the look you want, ie bend instead of stretch or fold.

01 January 2009, 03:15 PM
I thank each of you for all the help. I tryed to use a Stretchy ik spline, i don't have a tutorial or document on how to do this other then the basic stretch rig document applied to the basic joint chain. But when i turn the stretch control on, the joints all stretch out of propotrion across the scene before any controls are moved. To be honest i don't know how to do the strecth rig other then on the basic joint chain. Is there something different that has to be done when applying it to a ik spline? If someone has a doc or a link to a doc/tutorial. It would be greatly appreciated.

Once again I thank you for taking the time to reply and help me out.

Ryan Zwicker

01 January 2009, 03:16 PM
are you using max? if you are..

if your wires are made of spline objects you could use a linked xform modifier to link the end vertices to point helpers that are linked to the geometry thats moving. That way you have bezier control over the spline, and it also stretches automatically.

The max help files gives a description on how to use the modifier. If you have jumbles of wires you could set up a control object that controls the central vertices of the wires using the linked xform modifier as well...

if you run into any troubles I could do a short tutorial for you; let me know.

oh and another way would be to use the hose object. it ends up working the same way as the above but with a little less control.

01 January 2009, 10:32 AM
here's a rig setup i made a while back for wires, ponytails, and stuff like that. i'll explain it here and if you need more help i can post pics. its for maya but i'm sure it could transfer to other apps.

1. create a curve running through the wire. i usually use about 6 CVs but obviously it depends on the length of your wire. do whatever looks right to give you the control you're after.

2. create clusters on all the CVs of the curve.

3. use the wire tool (it deforms geometry based on a curve - i would assume there's a deformer like that in other apps) on the wire geometry. if you move the clusters around now it should deforms the wire accordingly.

4. create a small nurbs sphere for each cluster and snap them to their correspoding clusters. parent constrain the clusters to the spheres.

5. make all the spheres rigid bodies - the end ones should be passive so you can constrain them to other objects to keep them still. all the others should be active rigid bodies.

6. create pin constraints between all the spheres.

7. add a gravity field to all the spheres.

8. play around with the mass and damping for the spheres until you get results you want.

9. hide the spheres

i know this sounds like a lot of work for a simple effect but i have found it is reliable and easilly configureable.

hope that helsp


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