like the title in the description said, how can i make a mesh follow a rig / bones up to certain point where a part of my mesh would stop and the other part will still follow this is an example of the rig: 1. enter image description here

  1. this is where the problem arises where i want the second cube to slow down / stop and the third cube will still follow the rig with the stick enter image description here

i would really appreciate it if there's anyone who can point out where and how i can fix this problem XD

Thank you.

(keep in mind this is only an example)


Bone constraints work fine for this. What you need to do is add a bone for each segment, add copy rotation constraints, and define conditions on when to stop following the other bone. Blend file here:

Start with adding the bones, each one at the same location as the other, so the rotations can be copied off 1:1. Then, add copy rotations constraints to each sub-bone (they should not be childs of the main stick bone in edit mode!).

three bones

now add the limit rotation constraint to each of the two sub-bones:

limit rotation

use local space for all of them for more flexibility of the rig. Finally, set the limits. I chose a -5 to +5 range for the first, and a -10 to +10 range for the second one. The values are arbitrary for me, in essence the bone stops following the master when those angles are reached:

final result

Be careful with the order of constraints, it matters (as with mesh modifiers): The constraint on top is executed first, then the one below it, etc etc.

Edit requested by user: Using Armature Weights

The parenting in the original file was done using the 'Parent to Bone' option:

parent to bone

This only works if your objects are separate however. If you are in a situation using one mesh which is deformed by an armature, check this blend file:

On layer 1 the original rig is still present, on layer 2 there's a version using an armature modifier and weights. I simply assigned the weights in the mesh data tab, as they would be 1.0 for the respective vertices anyways, no need to paint them.

The rig itself is exactly the same, I could have even reused the armature instead of duplicating it.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thank you very much for the speedy answer!, if i might add how did you make the mesh follow the rig, it's because i don't find any weight painting / vertex group associated with it. (sorry i am a newbie in this matter) p.s : for completion sake could you add alternative ways to do it and for other people if they have this problem as well. :D $\endgroup$ – noob.blenderhead Aug 16 '16 at 10:02
  • $\begingroup$ @noob.blenderhead edit made to answer and added a second blend file to it. $\endgroup$ – aliasguru Aug 16 '16 at 10:25
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you very much for the answer!!! i had an extra question for this subject how do i get a delayed effect on the middle cube so i can emulate a joint in a character ex : if cube-top : rotate 45° so that the middle cube would only rotate 35° in the same direction (i'm sorry if what i ask is not clear enough, english is not my first language) all in all, Thank you so much !!! $\endgroup$ – noob.blenderhead Aug 16 '16 at 12:18
  • $\begingroup$ each constraint has an influence property, meaning that the constraint should be applied by a certain factor. lower the influence of the copy rotation constraint to 0.5 to have the bone follow the other by half the amount. $\endgroup$ – aliasguru Aug 16 '16 at 14:03

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