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Completing the chest rig
In this lesson, we will finish rigging the robot's chest. So once we've managed to finish the entire chest, including the tires in the back, we'll then go in and build a center of gravity control. But what we don't want to do is parent the chest to our hip control, because we'll want independent control over the torso. So this will give us more freedom that way. But let's go ahead and get started. We will go ahead and first take care of the chest joint. Let's go ahead and use our MLC tool to constrain it to be chest control. So we'll grab our chest control, grab the joint, run the tool. So now that it has been constrained, you may consider using this as a control object. Or you may not. You may not have any need for it. But either way, it has done its purpose. It's constrained the joint to the chest control. So I'm just going to go ahead and leave the locator as is. We can test this out. Grabbing the chest control, we'll just start to rotate that around. All right. Great. So the joint follows. We can go ahead and move it around. Excellent. So next, we can go ahead and take care of the chest geometry. Let's go ahead and grab one of its pieces, hit the upper arrow a times, until we have managed to grab the entire group. Now let's go ahead and find it in our outliner. All right. There it is. So now it's just a matter of grabbing our joint and grabbing the body upper group. Now let's see what happens when we run our object offset tool. All right. Notice we get a warning. Says we need to either rename or remove our make NURB circle node. All right. Great. So let's go ahead and test this out. We'll go ahead and copy this, just to make sure we find the correct node. We'll add it to our select by name text box at the top. Let's go ahead and find the node. So you can see if we were to try to access this from let's say our outliner, all right, nothing. How about our hypershade? So we'll go ahead and view up and downstream connections. And you'll see that it's actually tied to one of the shapes in our chest control, the main shape itself. All right. So all we need to do here is go ahead and delete history on that object. So with the chest shape selected, or your chest control, you can go ahead and choose Delete History. Now that it's cleaned up, we can go ahead and re-run the tool. So again, grab the chest joint, grab the body upper group, run the object offset tool, and notice everything works just fine. All right. Great. Let's go ahead and start to increase the size of this. Well, we really need to crank this one up. Let's try 200 or somewhere around there. All right. 200 seems to work just fine. Great. So we now have a secondary chest control. And what this also means is that our chest control is now driving the robot's torso. Now, there are a few pieces inside of the robot that we need to address. Let's go ahead and take a look at them. So if I we were to grab just a few these pieces on the chest plate, I'll just go ahead and move them out and grab just one more there and move that out. Now, as you can see, there is a mesh inside named robot's inner body. And then we have a few structures in here. A few of the structures are tied to the neck. So we won't worry about that just yet. Then we have one tied to our chest. And then there's actually another inside that's connected to our hip. So we're going to go ahead and work on getting those connected. What I'd like to do with this robot inner mesh, however, is just to go ahead and hide it, because it's really not necessary. It's there if we need it. But in our case, we won't need to rig this at all, because when we get to animation, you won't even notice it. But again, it was just there in case we do decide to use this object. So what I'm going to go ahead and do is work on just creating a button to hide or show this piece, in case we need to get back to it for whatever reason. And we can use this same tool for any other meshes that we may feel fit within that category. All right. So I'm going to go ahead undo back to where the chest pieces were brought back to the chest plate. And I'm going to go ahead and set a key on frame one with the shift W. Let's make sure autokey is off. And now when we go ahead and move these pieces, it's just a matter of moving our timeline to snap the back. All right. So again, we're going to go ahead and take this mesh go ahead and hide it. So let's go ahead and use our script editor for that. I'll go ahead and bring it up and just clear everything out. OK. So here we have it. So with that piece selected, let's say we go ahead and set the visibility to zero. So we now have the code we need to hide the object. And to show it, it's just as simple as setting the zero to a one. But let's go ahead and add this code first to our shelf. Make it a mel button. Now you can go ahead and right-click and choose edit. Head over to the shelves tab. We'll go ahead and rename this to hide/show objects. And for the tool tip, this will hide/show objects not needed, or somewhere around there. OK. Great. Now, for the icon label, we can simply call this hid, since the main purpose of this is to hide those objects. So I'll now go ahead and choose save all shelves. And now what I'll do is go ahead and copy that line of code that was used to hide that object. And go ahead and set the visibility to one. We'll go ahead and copy this code. And let's head over back to our button. So notice we have a double-click command tool or tab, which is really neat. So all we need to do is go ahead and paste the code in to the double-click tab. And if we go ahead and save out our shelves, we now have a way of bringing that object back. So right now, it's hidden. If we were to double click the button, it comes right back. So this is really neat. And again, we can use this for any mesh we may feel that fits within this category of hiding objects that really won't show in animation. All righty. Well, with that being said, I'll make sure that we hide that piece. And we can go ahead and work on rigging the chest piece, which is structure B. And we'll come back to the hip piece shortly. So this is just going to be a matter of using our object offset tool to constrain it to our chest joint. Let's go ahead and grab the chest joint, grab this structure piece, and run OOT. All right. Let's go ahead and start to increase the size. So we can really start to bring this up, not as much as we did for the first OOT control for the chest. So I'm going to go ahead and set this to, let's say, about 180 or so, just starting there. That looks pretty good. Maybe we can increase that a little bit more closer to about 190. And that works out a little bit better. Both object offset tools are still easy to go in and grab. Great. So at that point, we can go ahead and select all of those pieces that we set keys on. We can move our timeline. They snap back. And now we can go ahead and highlight all of these channels and choose break connections. Beautiful. All right. So the good news is we have our chest control working. Everything's looking good. We can check our outliner to make sure everything is stored properly. We do have this chest group. Let's go ahead and add that to our global move group underneath controls. Great. All right. Well once that's finished up, we're ready to work on the wheels connected to the chest. And we'll start on that in the next lesson.
In this tutorial, we will learn the methods that were used to rig the transforming robot. Throughout these lessons, we will learn the tools and techniques used in the setup process of both our robot and truck. The goal is to break this complex idea down into a simple, and manageable form. We'll cover the rigging process in its entirety, and along this journey, we'll be introduced to several tools that will help make this all come together efficiently. By the end of the course, you'll have the set of skills needed to rig your own transforming robot.