Motorcycle Rigging


Does anyone know of any tutorials on rigging motorcycles or does anyone know how to rig one? I would really appreciate any help on this


Which way? Character-like or technical(shocks and that stuff)?

PS. I like your FIAT-tut, helped me a lot a few years ago.


well shocks are easy enough to set up. I was thinking of setting up a complete rig for a motorcycle that has everything set up to work as it would on a real bike, with wheels that turn at the right speed depending on the translation along any direction and maybe even wheels that react to the terrain. I’m having trouble with the rigging process and I just wanted to know if anyone knew how to do it properly.


there are several ways to solve the problem with the wheel. Wiring or expressions, using a plugin, reactor.

Roller is a plug in that does this, but requires a path to roll on.
There should be a file called ‘Expressions-Roll.max’ in one of the tutorials, have a look at.

edit: Just found this on

Should be a start to setup a rig reacting to the surface(works with animated surfaces, too)


The expression for controlling the wheel rotation is very simple.

rotationX = translateX * wheel_scale

Adjust the scale value to get a rotation that matches the radius of the wheel. This expression can be done as a scripted expression Max or Maya.

For rigging a bike that’s a good question. I have to do an ATV this month.

I was thinking of using a mix of spring controllers and constraints to have the rig work it’s way up from the wheel to the rider.

You should have the body of the bike follow position constraints at the top of the shocks. The top of the shocks should be connected to the wheels with spring controllers, and when the wheel bounces up/down the spring translates that motion upwards to the body of the bike. Giving it a jumpy natural look. You also just animate the wheels and the body of the bike follows on it’s own.

Get what I am talking about? or was that confusing?


what is the radius of the wheel ?
calculate the circumference (2Piradius)
one complete rotation of the wheel would equal this distance.
figure out the number of rotations it would take to span the distance of one mile (or one KM)
convert this result from standard conversion tables (inches to mile or cm to KM)

translate the number of frames within a given minute then multiply to get frames/hour.
(fps * 60 * 60)

calculate the number of frames it would take for one complete rotation of the wheel based on the speed the vehicle is travelling: example 80 mph = x frames per rotation.
hint: you have the number of frames it would take to complete a full hour of animation.


I know how to get the wheel to rotate properly, the porblem is that it only works if the bike is traveling perfectly straight on the Z axis, as soon as I try turn the bike then it doesn’t work right anymore. It needs to be dependent on the direction of travel, not just the x or z axis.


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