Rig creation: Adding bones later on?

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  01 January 2013
Rig creation: Adding bones later on?

Hi everyone,

I'm still in the process of transferring all my 3dsmax knowledge over to Maya and I would like to know how easy (if at all) it would be to make a full body rig, create animations for it, and then add extra bones later.

I'd be dealing with many different files, so I was just wondering how easy it would be to implement extra rig components later on in time. Does anyone have any experience with this in terms of how to tackle it in a smart, non-destructive way?

  01 January 2013
What kind of "extra bones" are we talking about here?
Are you thinking crazy thoughts like making an arm with three joints to start and then switching to some multi-jointed elbow forearm setup?
No, you can't be thinking something crazy like that.
You just want to add extra joints to secondary things like long ears and a tail...or even simpler add extra objects to the character that aren't part of the main character mesh.
The answer to that is "yes, it is easy". If you are adding to an already skinned mesh you will need to paint the weights for the added joints. This should not undo any skinning you've done on any part of the model that isn't affected by the new joints. If it does, you just need to change how you are adding the joints.
Extra stuff can be added in any way that you want. Go crazy! I would just recommend using some naming convensions to make things easy to isolate if needed. For example: shoulderPad_GEO, shoulderPad_01_JNT, shoulderPad_01_CTL.

Good luck
  01 January 2013
Originally Posted by animatedfox: Go crazy!

You should be able to use the skeleton>insert joint tool to add the joint, then edit smooth skin>add influence on that joint. It's probably preferable to do this in bind pose and then transfer the weights of an old skin to the new one, considering this workflow might mess your weights up. Also, I'm not sure if this will mess with your animation. Perhaps creating the rig as a referenced file will make things like this easier.

Last edited by jgibz : 01 January 2013 at 06:37 AM.
  01 January 2013
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