Animation - Rotating Empty/Mesh Circles

I am working on an animation. I am trying to show a truck driving down a road, with two laser scanners spinning from the back. I have created the truck, I have a created an empty cube that follows the truck. I have created an empty circle at the location of each of the scanners, along with a mesh circle. The empty circles are following the empty cube, the mesh circles are following the location and the rotation of the corresponding empty circles. Each scanner (empty circle) is tilted upward 30 degrees, and tilted outward 30 degrees. When I attempt to rotate the empty circle, I can’t figure how to restrict its rotation to local axis only. They always seem to snap back to the global axis (x) and as the truck(empty cube) moves along a path, and turns left or right, the mesh circles along with the empty circles, are locked in that rotated position, and do nor rotate with the truck. I have included a picture. Imagine the empty cube as the truck, and any way i turn the truck, the scanners (circles) should turn with it. I have tried doing this with empties, but not having much luck. Any thoughts? Rigging?


Hey, I would rig this using an armature, with bones, you are animating in ‘local space’. ‘Emptys’ in this case are not advantageous …

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Thanks again ajcdfin. I was reading some tutorials, and empties seemed to be the right method, I just didn’t think about rigging with an armature. I will give it a try.