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I'm doing a rig and I want to modify the shape of my bones: in particular the control bones of torso.

Here a simplified situation: I want to change the shape of my octahedral bone in the circle behind.

enter image description here

The problem is this: in pose mode my bone, after choosing the custom shape, disappears.

enter image description here

Furthermore if I switch to object mode the bone will come back with the circle shape.

enter image description here

Here the point is: I need tools to move my mesh easily and a circle around the waist is perfect but in pose mode doesn't appear . . . i can't understand why since the method used should be right.

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To see the custom bone shape displayed you need to check the Wireframe checkbox in a Display panel of the Bone header. enter image description here

Also, it is a good habit to keep your custom bone shapes in the last layer. Move your mesh to layer 20th then. Being in Object Mode select both layers with Shift and transform your custom mesh (using G,R and S) to fit the bone position. Then enter the Edit Mode and change the mesh's shape. The bone shape will behave the same. enter image description here

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