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The LiteRig is a small, lightweight bipedal (humanoid) animation rig for use with Animation Master version 15 and higher (The installation process has only been tested with v15, though the rigged model is probably compatible with v13 and higher). It is *light* because it does not have all the features of more robust rigs such as the Squetch Rig and the 2008 Rig. Its file size, without any mesh, is only 130KB. It does however, have the essentials, including:

  • IK/FK switching in the arms - FK is the normal mode. Switch to IK to keep the hands stuck in one place while the rest of the character moves.
  • IK feet - This helps to keep the feet steady while the rest of the character moves.
  • The feet can pivot from either the heel or the toes.
  • Steady head and shoulders - The head and shoulders maintain their orientation while the character rotates its torso and hips.
  • A hand gizmo - This allows you to easily manipulate the fingers. You can turn the gizmo off for more control of the fingers.

Quick Instructions

  • Open "LiteRig.prj" and save it under a different name.
  • Import your model into the project.
  • Drag the model (included in the project file) onto your model. This will import the geometry bones and several User Properties.
  • Position the bones.
  • Add your own fan bones, cogs or other custom bones.
  • Add custom constraints for your fan bones, cogs or anything else in the Custom Constraints pose. (it is created when you import the geometry bones)
  • Assign control points. Add control point weighting, SmartSkins etc. and test the mesh deformations.
  • Open the action using your newly boned model. (Note: The controls will not work yet. You must finish the process for the controls to work.)
  • Activate the "Key Translation", "Key Rotation", "Key Constraints" and "Key Model" filter buttons in the Frame Toolbar.
  • Click on the action so it is selected.
  • [shift]-click the Force Keyframe button in the Frame Toolbar. In the Force Keyframe dialog box, choose BOTH "Only in filtered channels that pre-exist" AND "Also add keys to constraint results". This creates channels for proper export of the controls.
  • SAVE the project (or at least the action). The model will not export properly unless you save the action first.
  • Right-click on the action and choose Export -> Model from the context menu. Save the model under a new name.
  • Your model is now rigged.

I really want to thank mtpeak2, itsjustme, Steven Cleary and all the others who contributed key ideas to the construction and usability of animation rigs. If I didn't have the work of those guys to look at, I would never have been able to design this rig.

 

 

Newest Version:

LiteRig.zip (updated 8/24/09) - includes LiteRig.prj which is all you need to install the rig.

 

LiteRig_Installation.pdf (updated 1/04/09) - A pdf file with more detailed instructions on how to install it.

 

RobbyLite.zip (updated 1/07/09)- A model created by Animus, which has been rigged with the LiteRig.

 

5/27/09 - added Thumb Rotator nulls to the thumbs. Now you can move and rotate the thumbs for more precise control.

LiteRig.zip

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very very nice Mr. Holmes.

 

Nice instructions as well

 

Amazingly deLITEful. Elegant.

 

The squetchy legs will take some getting use to (when moving the hips) . I haven't really examined the rig in depth, but given it's beautiful simplicity, it seems that it will be easier to modify/customize/hack if one wanted to make an option to "squetch/not squetch" the legs, I suspect.

 

Thanks so much for doing this and Happy new Year!

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It JUST so happens I have a new character that may benefit from a very LIGHT rig...

 

Happy NEW YEAR too you, Holmes!

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The Robby model was posted by Michel (Animus). I don't know if he modelled it or not. I just rerigged it for him after his attempt to install the 2008 rig without an installer.

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The Robby model was posted by Michel (Animus). I don't know if he modelled it or not. I just rerigged it for him after his attempt to install the 2008 rig without an installer.

 

Thanks Mark. I updated my first post.

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This seems very easy to install and set up. I will try it on my terminator model and see how it goes. He is very basic and needs absolutely none of the fancy squetch stuff. I haven't put any control rig in the t800 yet because I can't decide which one to go with. Once I commit to one it's going to be a lot of work to set up.

 

-vern

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I have not used the 2008 or Squetch rigs, yet. They seem to intimidate me. But this one doesn't seem so bad so took Robby for a spin. I made him do a standing broad jump. The rig is great, the controls are intuitive and well placed. I didn't expect the legs to squetch, but for Robby this seems natural. Great job guys.

 

At one point I seemed to get the knees stuck backwards. I cannot seem to get them to point in the forward direction again. What is the trick to this? The knee controls don't seem to do it.

 

Thanks,

Phil

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Very cool lite rig, Holmes!

 

I haven't tried the installation, but I messed a little with RobbyLite. I have three quick things that might be helpful...it's your baby, so it's for you to decide if they are helpful or just hot air.

 

First, the leg squetching is also being transferred into the feet. To avoid that, you can parent the feet geometry bones outside of the legs and use constraints to connect them.

 

Second, the feet rotate on their 'Z' axis when translating the hips left/right. A roll target for each foot bone would fix that.

 

Third, I don't think the euler limits on the biceps are necessary.

 

I don't know how these changes would affect your installation, so you might have to do them differently than what I'm thinking (if you decide any are useful). Here's a RobbyLite with those changes added as an example.

 

Hopefully, this is helpful. When I get more time, I'll do some more stress testing.

v13_RobbyLite.zip

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I also have a suggestion/request for the Torso Translator Null: I think it would be good to change the manipulator option on the Null to standard (instead of translate only). But then don't allow scale or rotate on x, y, z - that way you get more fluid control on stretching of the torso in any direction. Me guste mucho.

 

__________________________________________

 

I have also been playing around with trying to get an option for a smooth no stretch/stretch of the legs - but something funny is happening that I can't quite figure out using Robbi.

 

What I tried: In the Leg Constraint relationship - I changed the calf to NOT scale to reach with the kinematic constraint to the calf aimer bone. And then I added a new percentage pose relationship which just has the kinematic constraint to the calf aimer bone but allows scale to reach, z axis only. In that new pose, I also made the enforcement linear (0 at 0 percent, 100 at 100%). I can get the switch from unstretch to stretch ok - but it seems to require a toggle of the percentage pose sometimes, and it seems to operate as an on/off switch rather than continuous and smooth.

 

But I can get a smoothly switching "kinematic scale to reach" using a simpler - 1 bone, 1 null model.

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You guys are awesome.

 

At one point I seemed to get the knees stuck backwards. I cannot seem to get them to point in the forward direction again.

You should now be able to fix any backward pointing knees with the knee controller. If it doesn't work, just grab the thigh bone and yank it forward.

 

the feet rotate on their 'Z' axis when translating the hips.

the leg squetching is also being transferred into the feet

fixed. Thanks for the sample file!

 

I don't think the euler limits on the biceps are necessary.

I took out the limits. At least I think I did. At least I intended to ...

 

change the manipulator option on the [torso translater] Null to standard (instead of translate only).

done. I've been meaning to do that.

 

trying to get an option for a smooth no stretch/stretch of the legs

I feel your pain. I don't know how many hours I've spent trying to get that to work reliably in a way that doesn't complicate the installation process. (This is the *lite*rig after all) For now, I just turned off the stretchy legs. If you want to turn them on, set "Scale to Reach" to ON in the Leg Constraints -> Calf -> Kinematic Constraint.

 

I updated the installation package and RobbyLite in the first post.

 

NOTE: Make sure you SAVE the project (or at least the action) before you export the model. The model will only export correctly if you save the action first.

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Just finished puting the rig into a model and it IS easy and work's well ,thank's Holmes

now can I update the rig without doing it all over ,is it easy enough to do ? or do I have to rerig

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Thanks, Holmes! This might be just what I've been looking for. I've been looking for a simple to install rig. I've downloaded it, I'll be playing around this weekend!

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I noticed that the Fingers Controller didn't have the ability to "spread the fingers" any more - I also didn't quite understand what the Carpal Controller was supposed to be doing (seemed weird behavior) - so I changed the Carpal Controller Null Manipulator option to Rotate only and only allow rotate on Y, but not X,Z. It had been set to Standard, and to allow X,Z and NOT Y. The change seemed to get the "spread fingers" back.

 

Were you intending the Carpal Controller to do something else ?

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Just finished puting the rig into a model and it IS easy and work's well

That's what I want to hear :)

now can I update the rig without doing it all over ,is it easy enough to do ? or do I have to rerig

You can try to modify it yourself, but re-rigging from a boneless mesh would probably be easier in the long run.

Delete all the Control Bones ie. all bones which are not under the Root bone.

Delete the Relationships -> Bones container (the Bones folder under the Relationships folder). Do Not delete anything in the User Properties Relationships container.

Detach the feet bones from the Calf bones and move them, along with their children, up in the hierarchy - directly under the Root bone,

Add a bone called "Left Foot Placer" as a child of the calf bone, attached to the calf bone (size and orientation are not important).

Do the same for "Right Foot Placer".

Import the model into the updated LiteRig project.

Open the action with your model - and follow the normal procedure from there.

 

I noticed that the Fingers Controller didn't have the ability to "spread the fingers" any more - I also didn't quite understand what the Carpal Controller was supposed to be doing (seemed weird behavior) - so I changed the Carpal Controller Null Manipulator option to Rotate only and only allow rotate on Y, but not X,Z. It had been set to Standard, and to allow X,Z and NOT Y. The change seemed to get the "spread fingers" back.

 

Were you intending the Carpal Controller to do something else ?

Thanks. The Carpal Controller moves the Carpal bones in the X AND Y directions. I changed the manipulater options to allow X and Y rotation, but not Z roatation. I have never rotated it using the rotate manipulater before. I would just drag the end of the bone around - and when you do that, it rotates freely for some reason. Anyway, it should be fixed now.

 

Updated project and instructions are in the first post.

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There is still a foot issue. If roll targets are applied as David suggested, that would take care of this problem.

 

I have an issue with how the spine works. I would rather see the bend between the lower hips and the lower spine or have the lower spine rotated 50%. Also, there is no way to rotate the lower spine on the Z axis, except for rotating the hips null.

foot_issue.mov

spine0.jpg

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I played around a little with RobbieLite too and really like the simplicity of the rig.

 

I haven't installed the LiteRig yet but have examined your documentation in depth in anticipation of doing just that. You've very obviously put a lot of effort into both the rig and the documentation.

 

I've annotated your tutorial on my end with all sorts of notes to watch for during the installation and plan to check my experience against that. I was going to suggest a few changes in documentation to accomodate new users but will hold off until I actually install the rig several times. Gotta get that real-world experience!

 

If any of you have screen capture setups on your systems perhaps you can capture and share an installation? I'd be happy to edit any raw footage in need of editing. I'll try to screencap my installation as well.

 

Thanks Holmes!

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Thank's Holmes ,I think I will hang on for now and then rerig from a clean model as its working ok for me at the moment .See what others come up with and get any fixes cheers for a nice rig

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Ok holmes, you need to rethink you method for the knee controller. The method you used has two problems (1) the kneeecap in your setup always points forward. (2) The controller setup has a circularity.

 

The controller is constrained to the calf, then the thigh (parent of calf) is constrained to a child of the controller. This is a circularity. The controller does not animate corrrectly do to this issue, I've also had the controller go crazy at times when trying to position it. I had my concerns about the setup and trying to animate it confirmed it.

 

In the clip I posted, the right leg should be in the same position as the left leg at the start and end of the clip.

 

I haven't looked at the arms yet, but you may want to use the same method on the legs as you did for the IK arms.

knee_issue.mov

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There is still a foot issue. If roll targets are applied as David suggested, that would take care of this problem.

Mark I'm having trouble reproducing the problem you are having with the toes. Would you please tell me how you are positioning the model?

 

Edit: Never mind. I figured it out. A fix will be in the next version. Thanks.

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OK, I think I fixed all the issues mentioned so far.

Updated Project, Instructions and RobbyLite are in the first post.

 

I took out the knee pointers in order to make the rig behave in a more reliable way and to get rid of the circular constraint Mark found. As a result, the legs may sometimes bend backward. If that happens, just grab the Thigh bone and yank it forward.

 

I would rather see the bend between the lower hips and the lower spine or have the lower spine rotated 50%. Also, there is no way to rotate the lower spine on the Z axis, except for rotating the hips null.

There is now a pose in the Rigging folder named "Show Lower Spine". If you turn it On, you can rotate the lower spine. If you leave it Off, the Lower Spine rolls like the Torso (30%).

 

I didn't change the way the Lower Spine bends though. If you want an arc instead of a straight bend when you rotate the Hips, you can just move the torso back a little and that will cause the Lower Spine to bend.

Untitled_1.jpg

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Ok Holmes, here's a few possibilites, if you wish to use them.

 

Added limits to the calves to keep kneecaps in position.

Added "aim at" constraints (apply before action) to the thighs, in the "legs IK" pose, to the ball controllers. Knees point in the direction of the feet, but still can be positioned manually.

Allowed translation of the lower hips and constrained lower spine to the lower hips. Translating the lower hips will now stretch the lower spine in the same way it does when translating the torso translator.

Added a roll like constraint to the lower spine, so it rolls like the lower spine 30% as well as the torso.

 

Take it for what it's worth, it's up to you if you want to use it.

v13_RobbyLite_Mark.zip

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Excellent suggestions Mark, and elegantly implemented too! I didn't even have to change the installation instructions. (though I uploaded a new version of the instructions because I updated the image of the Force Frame dialog box)

 

I made all the changes, but I'm having an issue with the lower spine.

When I added the Translate to Lower Hips constraint in a prerigged model, it stretched fine when I pulled the lower hips around.

But, when I ran a fresh model through the installation process, the stretching gets ... stuck ... when I pull the lower hips around. When I turn the Main Constraints Off, then On, the bone updates and it does what it is supposed to do.

 

I looked at your model and the freshly exported model side by side and I can't see anything different. I don't know what's going on. Squetching the lower hips is a relative minor feature though, so I'm not going to worry too much about it.

 

Thanks for your suggestions.

 

Updated LiteRig and RobbyLite are in the first post.

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I think I may know why you had an issue with the stretching. The "translate to" constraint needs to be before the "aim at" constraint, in the relationship. I had to delete the "aim at" first, then add the "translate to", then reapply the "aim at" constraint again. So, if you added a constraint to the installer and the "translate to" is after the "aim at", there probably will be an issue.

 

[EDIT] Just checked the installation project and that is exactly the problem, the "aim at" constraint is before the "translate to". Just delete the "aim at" and reapply it, so it comes after the "translate to" constraint. Robbylite has the same issue.

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Just delete the "aim at" and reapply it, so it comes after the "translate to" constraint.

 

Looks to me like one can also just drag the constraints to reorder them so that they appear in the correct order (15e) - This was news to me.

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Just checked the installation project and that is exactly the problem, the "aim at" constraint is before the "translate to". Just delete the "aim at" and reapply it, so it comes after the "translate to" constraint. Robbylite has the same issue.

 

Yep, it works now. Thanks.

Updated LiteRig project and RobbyLite model are in the first post.

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The Euler limits for Robby's left forearm seem to be wrong. They are currently min: -25, -45, 0 max: 45, 45, 0 - and should be min: 0,0,0 max: 180, 0, 0. (like the Right forearm)

 

The bones model is also wrong

 

EDIT: zip file contains modified prj (Bones.mdl) and modified Robby)

LeftForearmfix.zip

Edited by NancyGormezano

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Ok, so how can i fix this, then? I've been installing the last update of the rig (Not last night's, the one before) into a character. I've got all the bones placed and assigned, and I was about to install my fan-bones. Is there a way I can correct this without having to do all that all over again?

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I got a strange thing happening .I reriged the model I did before ,to get the latest rig .I had a misshap with making a fan bone and somehow deleated the left thigh bone.So I draged it from the bones in thge rigging prj and placed it back ,then deleated the bones under it (calf-foot and such)and named them as should be it all worked ok .But now I have done the install action thing and saved the model ,imported it into a new prj there is no hand control targets and the feet targets don't work properly ,theye don't bend the knees ,foot and toes are fine .Any Idea what I got wrong besides everything Iwould just like to know so that I don't make the mistake agaiI include a screenshot just in case anyone can see a problem from it

bones.jpg

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The Euler limits for Robby's left forearm seem to be wrong.

Doh! Don't know how something like that slipped past us :blink:

Thanks Nancy. Updated LiteRig is in the first post.

 

Ok, so how can i fix this, then? I've got all the bones placed and assigned, and I was about to install my fan-bones. Is there a way I can correct this without having to do all that all over again?

 

Save a copy of your boned model, for backup purposes.

Do the installation normally.

Then, with your rigged model, open the Rigging -> Limits relationship.

In the list of bones under the Limits relationship, find "Left Forearm", it will have a Euler Limits constraint.

Set the Euler Limits as follows:

----------

Minimum:

x = 0

y = 0

z = 0

----------

Maximum

x = 180

y = 0

z = 0

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I had a misshap with making a fan bone and somehow deleated the left thigh bone.So I draged it from the bones in thge rigging prj and placed it back ,then deleated the bones under it (calf-foot and such)and named them as should be it all worked ok .But now I have done the install action thing and saved the model ,imported it into a new prj there is no hand control targets and the feet targets don't work properly ,theye don't bend the knees ,foot and toes are fine .Any Idea what I got wrong besides everything Iwould just like to know so that I don't make the mistake agaiI include a screenshot just in case anyone can see a problem from it

I don't know what you mean by "there is no hand control targets" , but you must have done something to them. Deleting a Thigh bone won't affect the hands.

 

I just did a test in a Pre-Rigged model.

I imported the bones.

I deleted the left thigh bone.

Then I created a new bone and named it "Left Thigh".

Then I made it a child of "Lower Hips" (just like the Right Thigh bone).

Then, in the PWS, I dragged the "Left Calf" bone onto the "Left Thigh" bone, so it and all its children were now children of the "Left Thigh" bone.

Then I made sure the "Left Calf" bone was *attached* to the "Left Thigh" bone.

Then I saved the model as "TestModel_boned".

Then I opened it up in the Install action and exported as "TestModel_rigged". (Make sure you Shift-click on the Force Keyframe button, and then save the action first!)

And everything worked fine.

 

Go back to your boned model and try the steps above. If you haven't messed with any bones other that the Left Thigh hierarchy, it should work.

 

(When you are done rigging, you should have three versions of your model: Model_mesh, Model_boned and Model_rigged)

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I did a rerig on the saved model before running the riging ,but it still has my messing around in it with the left thigh bone .now I get the ik control on the right hand but not on the left in an action but it shows in the bones window.allso the ik controls for the legs just work the legs without bending the knee joint and the calf bones work like fk .Think I better start over.but can't see any reason for the ik missing on the left arm

shame as it works well apart from that .Thank's for your post above but I think I messed up somewhere

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allso the ik controls for the legs just work the legs without bending the knee joint and the calf bones work like fk .

You shouldn't be manipulating the calf bones (shouldn't even be seeing them) unless IK Legs is turned OFF.

 

but can't see any reason for the ik missing on the left arm

That one is a mystery :)

 

Think I better start over.

That sounds like you best bet. Think of all the great practice you are getting!

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One more thing with the feet, the foot roll targets should be children of the heel controllers. Right now, if you rotate the heel controller down, the foot flips over.

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One more thing with the feet, the foot roll targets should be children of the heel controllers. Right now, if you rotate the heel controller down, the foot flips over.

 

hmmmm...-you sure? I just tried it with the roll targets as children of the ball controller - seemed to work fine. When I made the roll target child of the heel controller - thats when the foot flipped (if I rotated the heel down)

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Oh I'm positive.

 

[EDIT] Lower the hips null to bend the knees first.

Foot_Flip.jpg

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Oh I'm positive.

 

[EDIT] Lower the hips null to bend the knees first.

 

Ok I see - I rotated the heel down - probably way too far - but I did not lower hip null first.

 

When I do the same extreme rotate of heel down (with target the child of heel controller) - the foot will then flip. I can see that it is necessary/important to move hip null down first, and it works better the way you are suggesting. Both ways have problems.

rotateheeldown.jpg

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With it as a child of the heel controller, with legs straight, it doesn't start to flip until you rotate the heel past a 90' rotation, but with bent knees it doesn't flip at all.

 

With the current setup, with bent knees, it flips at 23'. To me, this is not exceptable.

 

I expect it to not work with straight legs, but I don't expect it to flip with bent knees.

 

I'm just trying to Help Holmes. If you like it the way it is, Holmes can leave it as is. I really don't care.

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:) Got it done ,well close ,just need some smartslinn here and there .Got a bit of a prob with the bicep twisting but not bad,but this is dam quick to use ,anyway meet Lulu

Lulu.jpg

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foot roll targets should be children of the heel controllers.

Done. Updated project is in the first post. Also updated RobbyLite in the first post.

 

For those who have already rigged a character with a fairly recent version of the LiteRig and would like to have this fix, its very easy.

Open the folder for your rigged model and expand the "Foot Control" hierarchies.

In the PWS, drag the "Foot Roll Target" bone down the hierarchy so it is a direct child of the "Heel Controller" bone.

 

That's it! There's nothing more you have to do.

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:) Got it done ,well close ,just need some smartslinn here and there .Got a bit of a prob with the bicep twisting but not bad,but this is dam quick to use ,anyway meet Lulu

 

That's great Steve392. Thanks for posting a picture and providing feedback.

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The left forearm limits (Robby only) seem to be wrong again on your latest, but his footsie rolls are good-

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