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We are trying to animate a simple scene of the helicopter flying around a large city area. Is there was a way to make the already moving animated propeller stick to the helicopter moving around, without having to reposition it every time the helicopter flyies around?

Is there an option to add the propeller animation to a folder so that we can animate multiple things at once?

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2 Answers 2

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Select the rotor (airplanes have propellers), then shift select the helicopter, then press CTRLP to parent them together. Now the rotor moves with the helicopter whenever the helicopter moves. Just don't animate the rotor position anymore.

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Group Instance

A simple way to make a group of objects a single animated unit is to use groups. As an example have made a simple helicopter, made of three objects, the body and two rotors. The rotors are animated to spin using a simple rotation_euler[axis] = frame driver on their rotation axis. (Could be keyframed instead). There is no parenting or armature involved.

  1. Select All the objects that make up the helicopter and press CtrlG This will make each member have a green outline indicating it's in a group. Default group name is "Group".

  2. Move the objects to an unused layer.M select a layer. enter image description here Image shows 3 objects that make up heli, added to group "Group" and moved to layer 20

  3. In object mode, adding a group instance to your scene will add a helicopter keeping all the animations of the original. The instances can be translated, rotated, scaled. enter image description here adding group instance "Group" into layer 1. The original objects are on layer 20.

Sample file, with simple driver based rotation on rotors.

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