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I would like to know how I could arrange 6 cloned cones around the center of a circle.

As you can see in the screenshot, it's very easy for me to arrange them in a circle using an Array modifier and an empty as the offset object that is in the center of the scene rotated 60°:

enter image description here

Note that the cone that sits in the center is a clone of a cone that's offset to the point where I actually want the circumference.

It would be also helpful if you gave me a hint how to translate the bunch of clones after they are cloned without changing their relative position. I can easily calculate where they should be.

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  • $\begingroup$ My solution: since it is 6 parts and they are on a circle of radius r, i placed the original at (r cos(0),r sin(0)) and the empty at (r cosd(30), r sind (30)) an i have them as i want... $\endgroup$ – David Nov 14 '18 at 20:26
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    $\begingroup$ Hi David, I hope you don't mind my extensive edit. Hopefully it makes it easier to understand without changing what you intended to say. If it doesn't, please excuse me and edit it again to fix it. $\endgroup$ – Martin Z Nov 15 '18 at 0:10
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You're most of the way there.

When you use the Array modifier with an object offset, the offset between the first array element and the controlling object will be added to each subsequent element. The offset in translation is the move between the pivot point of the controlling object and the pivot point of first element.

The elements are not rotating around the empty. Each element is rotating around the previous element, (by as much as the first element is rotated with respect to the empty). Each element is to the previous element as the first element is to the empty.

You don't want any translation. You only want rotation. so the pivot point of the cone must be where the Empty is. Hit CtrlA > to apply the location: put the pivot point of the cone where the empty is, at the world origin.

Now to change the radius of the circle of cones .. don't move the pivot point of the cone - move its mesh, by selecting all its vertices in Edit Mode, and moving them.

To move the circular array of cones without screwing them up, you have to maintain the relationship between the first element and the empty.

The easiest way to do this is: select the cone, then the empty, and hit CtrlP > 'Object' to make the empty the parent of the cone (array). Now when you move the empty, the circle of cones moves too. You can still screw the array my moving the cone, so to be safe, lock all its transforms with the little padlocks in the Transform panel of the N properties region on the right of the 3D view.

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