View Full Version : nCloth or soft/rigid bodies?

04 April 2010, 02:19 AM
Hi everyone,

I'm fairly new to Maya, and and am now facing an interesting task at hand.

I've modelled a fairly detailed skeletal ribcage, and now I'd like to start putting some muscles on it. These muscles don't necessarily need to be rigged, they're there mostly for appearance purposes.

I've played around with the Muscle module, but they don't seem to 'hug' the ribs as I'd want them to.

So I'm thinking, either I could convert the muscle to an nCloth, and have the cloth collide with the ribs; or I could make the muscle into a soft body, and have it collide with a rigid body rib.

The problem with nCloth is that it always seem to be too 'thin'; the muscle doesn't retain its bulgy form, and it gets flattened quite easily. Perhaps...I could do the collision, set it as an initial form, and then inflate it?

The problem with the soft body is that I couldn't find a way to constrain the insertion and origin points of the muscle ( I can do this with nCloth by setting an nConstraint ). It also doesn't collide as well as I thought it might (particles overlap each other quite quickly).

I was wondering, what would be the direction I should continue on pursuing? Does anyone have any experience with having an object conform to the surface of another object?

Thanks for your suggestions and help.

04 April 2010, 08:50 AM
Did you try using pressure under the nCloth settings?

04 April 2010, 10:16 AM
i think ncloth should do what you want. play with pressure settings and try increasing the self collision thickness.

04 April 2010, 12:57 PM
besides using pressure, which may not always work...
have you played with very high stretch, compression and bend, etc to keep things stiff?
or you can use a constraint on the muscle itself to make 'springs' that will keep the object more solid...
and last but not least (very seldomly though ;) try using Rigidity

04 April 2010, 01:05 AM
Did you try using the collision options with the muscle deformer to press the muscle into the bone?

04 April 2010, 02:33 AM
Forget softbodies and rigids right now.

04 April 2010, 03:56 AM
Thanks everyone for the kind advice!

Unfortunately I was a bit tight on time, so I opted to create the muscles via Maya Muscle, and painstaking pulled the vertices to make it seem like they 'stick' onto the skeleton.

However, I may have to try the experiment again, this time with blood vessels/nerves that are stuck onto the muscles.

Todd, just out of curiosity though, do you mind giving me a very brief outline on your approach? I can't seem to find a tutorial to Maya Muscle that covers this...

Last but not least, here are some test renders:

04 April 2010, 10:13 PM
Todd, just out of curiosity though, do you mind giving me a very brief outline on your approach? I can't seem to find a tutorial to Maya Muscle that covers this...

Yes, absolutely. Select your muscle and bone geometry. Choose Muscle - Self/Multi Collsion - Apply Muscle Multi Collider deformer. Once its applied you can move the muscle against the bone geometry and it will deform in real time. You could keep adding to this to form your muscle shapes.

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04 April 2010, 10:13 PM
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