Question: Tutorials for people that are new to rigging?


not yet, i need to get some webspace. Is the website/dvd idea god idea for you guys?.. ill start this week on it.



For me is a a very good idea :slight_smile: .:bounce:


Dammit dont want to be a pest!

i’ll add a chapter on: Precise creation of bones, via point placement



hi eek

thanx for the max files these files are excellent, can you provide a document on how you have done it and i am desperately waiting for your other character rigging & animation tutorial.

Thanx n Regards



I was just wondering if any of you know where I could find a tutorial for rigging a robot-like character in max 5?

I have not been able to find anything of use in the max refernece and tutorial stuff cos that all refers to single surface characters.

I have a character that is part robot part alien (but mostly robot) and i tried rigging him using Skin, but while that worked the pieces of ‘solid metal’ were bending and it looked wrong. I don’t want to do it using forward kinematics cos that will take too long.

And am I right in guessing that u can’t apply an IK HI solver to a group of objects? cos it won’t let me…


robo_obi - you can apply an IK chain to any hierarchy, usually bones, but just as well to linked objects. You won’t find so many tutorials on this as it is generally much simpler than deforming a skin.

If you have a number of objects making up rigid segments you may still want to use bones (just for control), but rather than using a Skin modifier just link your geometry to the bones. Otherwise just link your geometry to each other and apply your IK chain to that.


For XSI rigging you may wish to have a look at:

The ACR (Advanced Character Rigging Series) by ADAM SALE.

Volume 1 starts off at the beginner level and each volume builds in complexity of the rig – 4 volumes in total (3 published so far).

Volume 4 is to be released in August – about 20+ hours of hardcore XSI rigging bliss in total.

You can learn more information about this at:

Free demos of this series are available to play with too.




Hey riltis
I am also new er semi new to rigging. I also rig in max. The tutorials that come with the program for max 6 are by far some of the best in software tutorials. Just click on tutorials then scroll down to professional tutorials and then click on complex character rigs. You could also start out with setting up bones tutorial because they use that bones character to make the rig but what I did the first time I went through the tutorial was to take my own character mesh and rig that. I was very pleased with what I ended up with. It took me a few times to get through everything and I still don’t understand a lot of it but it also introduces you to max scripting. i found the tutorials very helpful they are free and easy to understand. I hope this helps but you can also frequent some of the site links that have already been posted


eek, I love the quadraped rig you made. Would love to get a basic human rig from you. And video tutorials would be so nice. the biggest problem I have now is skinning, would love to have a tutorial on that. Thanks again, and cant wait for a dvd/site from you.


Ok People,

First off, thankyou very much neods, glad you like the rig. Hopefully its easy enough for you and others to grasp.

Sorry ive been away from you guys and not answering PM’s, i get loads so if ive missed you sorry about that.

Right whats in the pipeline,

Im current putting all my rigs and techniques together into a new DVD. I cant tell you much more but it will cover all manner of things, some key things:

ik/fk arms + pinnability
reverse feet,
sticky hands i.e pinnable(wont go through walls etc)
3,6 and 8 bone spine setups

  • little on facial setups
    and lots more…

Im also currently working on a website, which once finshed will cover all manner of rigging,
topics include:


CA &wiring
parents and children
floating pivots
LOD and refencing
skinning and wieghting
tricks of the trade & secrets
Accurate bone creation and placement

& more…


[/b][/u]biped rigs
quad rigs
oddities - tails, wings
ik/fk rigs
spine rigs
hand rigs
feet rigs

tricks of the trade & secrets

& more…


facial rigging
strechable spines,legs


[/b][/u]Fundermentals from pros( a good friend of mine and an ace at skinning)
how to skin
tricky areas
and a few secrets

evelopes and verts

I wish, 5 years ago i could access a site like this. So thats why im making it, its gunna cover from the ground up so basics right up to high level stuff. Its a massive resource site, nothing will be too specific so you add it to your work. Primarily in max, but maybe in other software.

There be a level system,
eg level 1 - easy,2-moderate, 3- hard - 4 -pro - 5 adv pro. there be tutorials in html, video plus max files and ms script.

Also the rigs will be really easy to make, and i cover reasons why i do things, eg, why i add contstraints there etc etc. Im trying to make it pretty much cover everything.

Also my facial rig seams to be dragging on, but its getting there slowly, and a short film is in the works and a massive lifestyle change, but i tell you about later.

eek. ps if you guys are stuck pm me or post it, im always around.

oh btw, if youve got a good name for the site let us know!


That sound wonderful. When will the dvd be available, and what is the price estimate? I could have some use for it soon. And thanks again.


Thw dvd will cover rigging a character from scratch, thats all i can say, and should be ready in a month or so. The price…mmm dont know?

The website im doing is my own thing, and idea being that you log in, and go through search stages e.g biped rig -> feet -> reverse foot rig or standard foot. Or biped-> standard biped or advance biped. Yourll be able to do this with everything. Need a name for the site!?



Hi Eek,

The whole idea is Just great, I hope this will help most of our Problems with Rigging and Skinning, which i’m really weak in :0)

When Can we expect ur website and ur DVD.


I cant giv u guys any set dates, hopefully the DVD will be done in a month or so, the website is a bigger challenge. I want it to work really nice, so im gunna spend the time on it. As for skinning a very good friend is helping me out on this part,( a much better skinner than me!)



Hi guys!

I’m just starting to get into rigging, and this forum has been exceptionally helpful. :thumbsup:

This is kinda a Max question… I’ve seen mentioned more than once that creating bones in different viewports can cause their alignment to be different.

Is this alignment to the worldspace? If not, what is this called? Is this information editable after creation? What are the big problems that come up?

Also, the stuff that Eek’s posted here has been REALLY awesome. It took me a moment, but everything that you need to animate on the dog rig is green. Sometimes it’s the simple things! :slight_smile:



Hi aaraaf,

Basically the rule i go by is build each bone in the viewport where then axis it looks down that view. So e.g i build the spine in the left view, because X is its most predominant axis i.e it bends down.

Its like this - stand up, straight arms out, and saying ok how does my arm bend- foward so build the bone in the top view as thats its most prodominant axis Z. Collar bones in the front etc etc. legs/feet in the left.

And yes your right the axis in each view is the world axis, and this is the axis in the f-curve. But bones especially have there own axis order, which you can set in there properties. The order of axis.

If you build an arm say in the front view, its predominant axis is YZX, as this is at the top of its axis order, but then say you change its axis order to be right - ZXY. You actually rotating it in Z but producing a Y curve in the fcurve and probably and offset of this being X. Eventually it will flip about 180 degrees. So then you have to freeze transform the bones so there axis order is the same as the world axis, so when you rotate it in x you get an x curve.

Gimbal lock occurs all the time, but by taking the time to build the bones in the right view, as if you were stand up, will reduce it to virtually nill.

Btw thankyou for liking my rig, its based on the rig setup we use at work and is pretty stable, the controls are:

The Red shapes are the main controls, torso, upper body
The green controls are hips,chest, head, feet, lock ankle, ears etc etc.

Makes it really easy to grab and animate.

Btw i have a website!! to put my rigging guide on. Currently Working on the theory side, looking into screen capture. So as your doing the rigs, your learning the theory behind it as well! Im also gunna have a request button so if your stuck on something i can add a page etc etc.

Oh and yes, ill post some of my animation too!



Eek, what do you think about XSI’s character animation possibilities, and the skinning tools? you like em? I’ve been thinking about maybe buying Foundation, so would like to know what you think as a pro, cheers…


Hi neods,

I used soft 7.9 a while back at Framestore and XSI recently, they basically ripped the animation tools out of the old soft. In the industry i think is got one if not the best fcurve viewers you can get, the tools are just awesome.

As per animation its got some lovely things, the ability to turn off tracks at will is my favorite, basically you can animate all the body stuff, then turn it off animate the face then turn it back on again! i wish other software had this.

XSI is built on strong foundations, back in the day of old soft you could tare out all the code and use it for game. XSI’s been used in Jet Set Radio, and recently Half Life 2, even my first job out of college was using in soft, i had to pick it up in about a week never using an f-curve before!

Its also got some seriously powerful constraint/expression tools, lots of NLA blending stuff,
ik fk, its got a lovely spine tool which was an outside plugin added in to it.

As per skinning its got most of the tools in most por packages, skin weighting, painting, evelopes. Quite nice to use.

What i would say is download the exp version or the demo give it ago then decide if you want to buy it.

They’ve all come from different schools of thinking:

Max is stack based ( you stack modifiers,controllers)
Maya is node based(node to node ala hypershade)
Houdini is procedural ( layers of procedural scripts eg. SOP’s and CHOP’s)

Soft is a mixture , and comes from very old technology, now with XSI its built on this adding very nice features and making it more artisticly friendly.

Originally it was owned by Microsoft, then sold to to Avid, as it was producing Avid software/express and eventually Mojo. This is said to be one of MS biggest blunders.



This makes perfect sense! :bounce: It really helped me with a project at work. The Discreet tutorials are awesome, there’s just so much stuff that gets explained in them so quickly that if you miss it the first time you don’t tend to find it again.

I can’t wait to see your site and get my greedy hands all over some more tutorials!



Im gunna discuss and show proper accurate bone placement on my site and the key rules.

And ive come up with a great system of doing the tutorials! Very nice learning system.Im also thinking of incorporating my facial rig into a tutorial.