Animating a Chain in 3ds Max

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In this demonstration Hristo Velev takes you through creating an animated chain inside 3ds Max. Everything from modeling the chain, skin wrapping it to a control object, and using cloth to simulate the dynamics are covered.

shouroujin

October 7, 2009 - 8:13am

why i only see 00:44?

 

Riki

October 7, 2009 - 8:20am

 hmm, it should be 12:46 long. What browser are you using?

Riki

October 7, 2009 - 8:05pm

 Could you take a screenshot and make a support ticket with it?

cetrian

October 8, 2009 - 4:12pm

pretty cool tutorial, i've learned a couple of nice tricks, thank u very much!!

xseson23

October 10, 2009 - 10:36am

Where can I find the plug-in clone, i,m using 3ds max 2010.

 

I have check the site of Itoo software but I think they dont have,..Please help I,m stack

Riki

October 10, 2009 - 12:09pm

 You can get the plugin here:

http://www.itoosoft.com/english/menu.php?id=download

It says it works for 2010 and I personally tested it on 64bits and it worked for me.

xseson23

October 10, 2009 - 12:39pm

Thanks Riki for this quick reply, it working Eye-wink

Riki

October 10, 2009 - 9:05pm

Thats great, hope you enjoyed it Smiling

iplay

October 12, 2009 - 12:30pm

Having problems

All i get is server not found rtmpe://eat3d.com//freestreaming
Using Fire Fox on 64bit xppro

Skeet12

October 14, 2009 - 11:43am

I've gone through the tutorial twice, but all my chain does when I simulate is fall (like a melting animation). It doesn't swing. Can you provide any help on this? Any ideas what I am doing wrong? I have a snapshot picture of what is happening, but don't know how to send it to you. Can I upload the picture anywhere?

Thanks!

Riki

October 14, 2009 - 11:50am

You could upload pics to a site like photobucket and paste the url.

Sounds like you didn't bind the verts correctly before hitting simulate.

Skeet12

October 14, 2009 - 3:22pm

Okay. Here is the url to photobucket with the image loaded. Hope this works. http://i565.photobucket.com/albums/ss94/MR_SRS/Chain.jpg

Glacierise

October 15, 2009 - 2:09am

I think your problem could that you've missed adding the 'welder' modifier in the control object, or some cloth setting. Check out for the welder modifier, and assign the 'default' preset to your control object in the cloth properties, and see if it resolves the problem.

Skeet12

October 15, 2009 - 2:12pm

I did find out that the problem was in the Welder setting. I had the welder applied, but the toggle was set to "normal face" rather than "
vertices". Once I changed this then it worked fine. Thanks for the input.

xseson23

October 16, 2009 - 5:00am

I,m having a problem with shell plugin. when I adding shell on the welder, than i,m seeing the plane like wireframe and even when i,m rendering it but when i shutdown the shell it get back to normal, am I doing something wrong? please help

Glacierise

October 16, 2009 - 6:13am

Make sure your welder modifier is set to 'vertices' and your shell modifier is set to inner .2 and outer .2 like in the video. If the problem persists, you can post up a scene for me to check out.

xseson23

October 16, 2009 - 6:36am

Thanks for your reply, it working, but the problem is now when i,m adding the path deform binding at the end and press pick path than is not picking anything, I think it cuz the Ctrl_chain_animation is already convert it to editable mesh.

Glacierise

October 16, 2009 - 7:28am

For the path deform to pick a spline, it needs to be a spline, no matter what is under the modifier. Make sure you have the spline visible and selectable, it's gonna pick it.

Anonymous

November 6, 2009 - 12:46pm

oh god ...

Anonymous

March 30, 2010 - 12:22am

very good

Anonymous

June 5, 2010 - 4:06pm

Very cool. I learned a lot and it worked first time. Excellent.

Curtis (not verified)

April 17, 2011 - 11:38am

I have built a very similar scenario with a project of my own. I have followed the steps through to hitting simulate. For some reason when I hit simulate the elements that aren't preserved seem to act against gravity and propel themselves vertically. Not sure exactly why this is occurring, could it be to do with different unit settings?
Thanks.

Hristo Velev (not verified)

April 17, 2011 - 2:49pm

@Curtis - sounds like your globals are different - check out the gravity in the cloth modifier. And yes, the scene scale is important too, in all simulations.

Curtis (not verified)

April 18, 2011 - 7:51am

Thanks a lot. I seemed to fix the issue I had before by assuring the welds were done correctly I tested the chain in a single document of its own and works fine, when importing into a scene with other geometry and following the cloth steps the chain seems to melt.
Here's an image that may help.

http://i1140.photobucket.com/albums/n577/mzdi8jc5/upload.jpg

Thank you very much for your help

Curtis (not verified)

April 18, 2011 - 8:03am

It might also be helpful to know that I have scaled the chain geometry. Are any of the values used, i.e. offset in the cloth modifier, scalable. Thanks again.

Curtis (not verified)

April 18, 2011 - 8:20am

Update: It seems to happen between after using the path deform. Tried cloth on the basic chain and works fine, however once I get it to follow the spline the "melting" seems to happen. When creating the spline I have normalized it to get a consistent form.
Sorry for the repeated updates, just trying to work through this problem.
Thanks

Hristo Velev (not verified)

April 18, 2011 - 8:39am

It looks like you want to do sometihng like a rope ladder? Probably you should use another approach, especially if its close to camera.

Curtis (not verified)

April 18, 2011 - 10:03am

Thank you for replying again. When I have it working properly it will be a façade of a structure made from chains. When the structure rotates slowly the chains will sway and move. I have narrowed the issue to the matter of scaling. Using all the values in the video, when imported into my scene works fine when using the cloth. However, once I scale the geometry of the chain by 500% and use cloth, it appears to melt again.

Hristo Velev (not verified)

April 18, 2011 - 10:21am

You should not be scaling anything, when doing simulation or any animation actually. Use the reset xform tool then collapse to base level the scaled objects - this makes the scale 100%, and keeps the current state of the objects.

Curtis (not verified)

April 18, 2011 - 1:49pm

That is great. Thank you very much. Seems to be working fine now. Much appreciated.

wzd45gft (not verified)

April 19, 2011 - 9:27am

Hi, I want to set an array of these up within a scene and have them respond to wind. I have referenced them so that they retain the same values such as the preserved vertices at the loops. However, with this being a reference (or an instance) when the wind affects the master, it effects the rest in the exact same way (their movement is copying the master.) Is there any way to set up the situation for one, array it, and then they all behave to the wind uniquely. I tried to make the arrayed geometry unique, however this erased the referenced preserved groups. Thanks.

Hristo Velev (not verified)

April 19, 2011 - 11:07am

You'll have to go with one single cloth object, and assign the groups there Smiling Or set it up once, then just copy over, resimulate.

wzd45gft (not verified)

April 19, 2011 - 11:14am

Sorry a little unsure what you mean by those.

Hristo Velev (not verified)

April 27, 2011 - 5:33am

Back from vacation Smiling I meant - make one big cloth object, simulate that.

xcm (not verified)

October 27, 2011 - 7:20am

Awesome Hristo!!
Thanks for that!

pedrok (not verified)

November 19, 2011 - 6:16am

Help me plz
I`v problem. When I starting simulation result is bad.
http://i1224.photobucket.com/albums/ee374/intelmerom/chaos.jpg
Welder modifier were added to control object. I checked all setting of objects but I`dont know what`s wrong. Can somebeody a bit help me?
Thanks

Glacierise

November 19, 2011 - 6:32am

Looks like you have some pieces not welded, you might want to increase the threshold of the welder.

Glacierise

November 19, 2011 - 6:32am

Looks like you have some pieces not welded, you might want to increase the threshold of the welder.

pedrok (not verified)

November 19, 2011 - 6:57am

I try increase value of threshold, but result is still same.

Glacierise

November 19, 2011 - 7:02am

Post your scene, I'll look at it when I have the time.

pedrok (not verified)

November 19, 2011 - 7:21am

Here you are.
http://i1224.photobucket.com/albums/ee374/intelmerom/chaos02.jpg
try change "falloff, dist.infl., face limit" without good result.
http://i1224.photobucket.com/albums/ee374/intelmerom/chaos01.jpg
try change "weld: verts/normal" without good result.
http://i1224.photobucket.com/albums/ee374/intelmerom/chaos03.jpg
I leave default settings. try change value form 0,1 to 100, and result is still same.
I really do appreciate your help
Thank you very much

Anonymous (not verified)

November 26, 2011 - 2:44pm

I have tried in ms design 2012, I have followed you but when came t cloth modifier ... there are no "groups" to make them steady there. There is no GROUP option in cloth there. Every year they move menus and options like they are insane, ALL except Adobe group. I am sick to search for moved options and moved menus every year because a moron decided it without any reason, just to mess up things.

Aamir wali (not verified)

December 23, 2011 - 6:48am

hi,
Dear sir or madam im very happy and very great thanks full to you ur web is very help full for cg artist.and charctar animation and rigging toturails thanks
Your Trouly,
cg arirst
Aamir wali,

Hebbe (not verified)

February 16, 2012 - 1:39pm

Where do i put the clone.dlm file?

Anonymous (not verified)

February 17, 2012 - 11:43am

In your 3dsmax\plugins folder

Glacierise

February 17, 2012 - 11:44am

In the 3dsmax\plugins folder

Anonymous (not verified)

March 6, 2012 - 4:55pm

Hello, around 1:40 to 1:46, the plane becomes the control_object for the chain, what hotkeys did you use, or how else can I do this?

Glacierise

March 17, 2012 - 1:31am

Actually at that point I'm just creating it. The rigging comes later, with the skin wrap.

Glacierise

March 17, 2012 - 1:31am

Actually at that point I'm just creating it. The rigging comes later, with the skin wrap.

Anonymous (not verified)

December 25, 2012 - 3:42pm

This is probably an incredibly stupid question (I just got the program and I know absolutely nothing about it), but how exactly did you assign a control object? All I see is you creating a plane inside the chain link...but while the eclipse is still selected. And for the life of me, I can't get that to happen. I'm not sure how you're getting the 'create' box to appear in the middle of your screen, I've been using the one at the top...perhaps that's my problem? Any help would sincerely be appreciated.