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SNAKE-ability in Carrara, can anyone figure this out?
Posted: 29 December 2012 03:33 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I am not sure if I am stubborn, or just a bonehead, but since RayDream (think late 1980’s proto-Carrara) I have been trying to figure out how to snake a cylindrical object along a specific tortuous path. I am not referring to applying a set wave deformer to the object, but rather,
having the the object behave, predictably along a path, just as a snake would.

The closest I have come has been extremely labor intensive use of the bend and twist deformer. But this provides a barely satisfactory use of a single curve at a time. Compound curves are out, as multiple bend and twist deformers, combined with assorted groupings end up distorting the object.

Attached, is a motion path file which shows an example of how I would like the snake object to move.
It contains a sphere which snakes a path between other spheres. With this file, I tried, and had to give up on:
duplicating the motion sphere and staggering the motion of the following spheres by a frame in order to try to have bones (attached to the vertex snake object) track individual spheres as they traveled along the path. .. ridiculous results.

Has anyone else suffered with this?  Any ideas?    For some reason, I am not being permitted to upload my .car file, nor a .wmv to illustrate.

Thank you,
Protovu

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Posted: 29 December 2012 03:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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I believe the forum only supports image uploads. Maybe a file sharing site like Drop Box might be the way to go. You could also try an animated gif for the animation.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 03:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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http://www.protovu.com/snaketest/

thanks for the reply.
try the link above.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I’ll have to try a couple things. I’m rendering in the Batch Queue so I could open the file without effecting my current render, but it’s sluggish as all heck.


My first thought is that the snake object should be rigged, and use IK perhaps. Whatever is done, there is going to be some work involved. I’m not sure there is a way to completely automate the process.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Have you looked into any of Fenric’s Tools for help?
This whole collection adds some fairly essential tools towards animation. I pretty much keyframe everything, myself, so I’m unaware of the proper knowledge to help. But many of the Forum discussions related to the tools in his store, have gone into AMAZING depth on the subjects. Fenric fans and forum responders are really into animation queries.

Edit - Oooops… forgot to hyperlink… here you go!

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Hi evil,
My little file was sluggish?

I did try rigging and using IK. I constrained the vertex object bones with balljoints to eliminate stretching. Could not get the desired snaking.

I also grouped the VO (vertext object ) with a couple of spheres directly above and below. Then I applied a bend and twist, set with limits and a nice tight
curve, to the center of the group. AS I pushed the VO vertically within the group, and it enters the curve area of the deformer, it behaves perfectly….......but that
is for only one curve. Not multiples. Ideally I would like to see the VO snake though 3 curves at once.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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faba, who is always posting on Fenric threads, has a snaking tutorial for free at shareCG, under the name of fabaone. She uses the ERC plugin to make the thing act however you please - like I said above - Amazing stuff!

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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http://www.sharecg.com/v/46194/browse/3/PDF-Tutorial/Carrara-ERC-example-+-description-(path-follow)

I just downloaded, and tried the tutorial above. It is not behaving as the associated image implies. I wonder if it would work on Car7? Actually, it is pretty much
what I was hoping would work. It is basically what I was trying yesterday. Does it work for anyone?

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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protovu - 29 December 2012 04:21 PM

Hi evil,
My little file was sluggish?

I did try rigging and using IK. I constrained the vertex object bones with balljoints to eliminate stretching. Could not get the desired snaking.

I also grouped the VO (vertext object ) with a couple of spheres directly above and below. Then I applied a bend and twist, set with limits and a nice tight
curve, to the center of the group. AS I pushed the VO vertically within the group, and it enters the curve area of the deformer, it behaves perfectly….......but that
is for only one curve. Not multiples. Ideally I would like to see the VO snake though 3 curves at once.


Suggish because I was also rendering and there were particles to calculate at every frame. Your file is fine otherwise. Still trying a couple things before I make any suggestions.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Ooops…..I seem to need the ERC plugin?? I will try to find, install, and report.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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protovu - 29 December 2012 04:47 PM

Ooops…..I seem to need the ERC plugin?? I will try to find, install, and report.


Should be available through DAZ. Fenric is the creator, so I assume you could use that to search by as well.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:54 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Here’s the direct link:
http://www.daz3d.com/shop/carrara-enhanced-remote-control

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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will need to pony up $50.
I will get it a little later. Perhaps someone has figured this out within Car. It is not just the money, but I am in the Beta 8.5 now, and I am not sure plugins, or this plugin will work. I would like to revert to 8.1, but for some reason, I cannot remove 8.5, and it is blocking 8…......another story.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 04:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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8.1 and 8.5 need to be installed in different directories from what I’ve read. You should be able to have many different versions of Carrara on the same machine.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 05:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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yes, I used to have at least 2 versions. Not sure what is going on.

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Posted: 29 December 2012 05:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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I do have to warn that many plug-ins do not work in the current Beta of Carrara 8.5 - so if that is a major concern… well… you’re probably right.  There are outstanding critical bugs that DAZ has to fix - there is nothing I can do, unfortunately.

I also seem to have been left out of the last couple of sales - my fault, I’ve been busy with my real job and haven’t been able to keep up with the forums here.  It would be nice if DAZ could do a little of the work, considering they take half the proceeds, but they don’t.

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