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So, I'm having a bit of trouble with scaling. An object I'm making involves the use of a path to form a curved surface, but I need the resulting curve to be within about 1% of an exact length.

Curve

So, if I were to have, say, this curve here that I made for purposes of this question... is there an efficient way to tell how long the black part would be if you straightened it out to a perfect line?

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In the Animation Nodes addon there is a node to do just that: Get Spline Length.

The example usage is what you need.

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  • $\begingroup$ Oh wow. That's SO much easier than I'd anticipated. Thank you! $\endgroup$ – Wavelength RenegadeReef Aug 22 '18 at 20:42
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The Curve Tools addon can also measure the length of a curve and may be easier to use if you're not already familiar with the Animation Nodes addon.

To measure the length of a curve using Curve Tools:

  1. Enable the Curve Tools addon (under Edit > Preferences > Add-ons).
  2. Select the curve object.
  3. Press N to show the sidebar and click the Edit tab.
  4. Expand the Curve Tools panel, expand the One Curve subpanel, and click Calc Length.
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    $\begingroup$ That also works quite well, and honestly, getting a sidebar is a fair bit more accessible and clearcut than having to open a node tree to get a single number. $\endgroup$ – Wavelength RenegadeReef Mar 16 '20 at 22:32
  • $\begingroup$ seems to not works for nurbs curves in 2.8? $\endgroup$ – ThorSummoner Aug 4 '20 at 4:16
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  1. make a plane
  2. go to array modifier
  3. change fit type to ' fit curve '
  4. select the curve
  5. scale the plane to 0.001, smaller you scale the plane more accurate the curve length
  6. check length in sidebar by pressing 'N'
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