How do I turn a bake cloth simulation into ipo curves int he ipo window?
Only way I know to do that is to convert the Cloth shapes (which are recorded in the cache folder when you bake the sim) into shape keys, which can then be IPO’d, and edited a great deal more flexibly than the “raw” sim can. I’ve found it the only way to deal with some of the collision and mesh-penetration problems that Cloth can have.
You’ll need a couple of Export & Import scripts to do this, not sure if they are in the default Scripts collection: File>Export>Vertex Keyframe Animation (.mdd) and File>Import>Load MDD to mesh RVKs
They’re pretty self-explanatory, and you can choose a couple of option that control how many keyframes are put into the IPO Curves Editor:Shapes.
I*'ve done that, but the result is a load of tangled up lines
Which lines are “tangled,” the cloth mesh lines or the IPO curves, and just exactly do you mean by “tangled”? Post a screen shot of the problem. Maybe it could clear things up a bit.