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I extracted a curve from a surface (with P in edit mode, then Alt+C in object mode). I then duplicated a cone along this curve but the duplicated objects are distorted and I can't orient them normal to the surface. How can I duplicate the cones without distortion and orient them normal to the surface ? picture

my file

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The issue is your curve has unapplied scale. Apply it with CtrlA> Scale and it will work fine (note that you will have to re-position your cone):

enter image description here

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    $\begingroup$ Awesome, thank you! It's working perfectly. This solution also helped me for another problem. It wasn't possible to obtain an even thickness on the surface with the solidify modifier without applying the scale. $\endgroup$ – eolivier Apr 21 '14 at 18:50

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