Blender Joint Orient?

I started off in Maya and am making my transition to Blender,
I notice right off the bat that the axis are different,
Just figured out how to mirror joints,
still don’t know if there’s a “Select Hierarchy” or “Search and Replace Names…” option but

Is there a way to ORIENT JOINTS in Blender?

If I understand what you’re going for, select the armature and go into edit mode. Select the bones and hit “Ctrl+N”. NOTE: Do this in EDIT mode. You don’t want to make a new file :slight_smile:

Hope that helps :slight_smile:


Hi there!

To your disappointment, I don’t think you are going to get what you are after, Blender only seems to be able to orient facing direction of bone “up” direction… So there is no comparable joint orientation tool like in Maya. You can align bones like mentioned above.

So, Y-axis (green handle of gizmo) is always pointing along bone length, as bone is tied together with joint, which works like in 3DS Max, where joint is not separate entity - linked to other joint by bone, that merely marks connection.

So as this is not the case here, aligning bone axis will do what I mentioned above, you can align it, but only X and Z planes will be affected AFAIK.

This is problematic, especially for importing data… For example, try importing FBX data and you’ll see nice vertically (or any other main axis-direction) aligned bones all over hierarchy… I hope I’m wrong - somebody correct me.

By orienting you mean making them point precisely at another bone ? If so I am not sure. I have found Blender’s joint system to be way easier to manage than Maya so maybe you don’t actually need this. What is your use case ?

@Hadriscus - In blender all bones point towards +Y. In Maya/FBX each individual bone can point towards whatever primary and secondary axis you want.

I’m not sure what the benefits of orienting individual bones each towards a different axis is, but this becomes a problem for Blender when importing/exporting FBX data… When a skeleton has different bones pointing in different directions, there is no way to import/export animations for that skeleton in Blender.

For example, the Unreal Engine 4 mannequin has left-leg bones that point towards -X and right-leg bones that point towards +X.

The only current solution I’m aware of is to standardize on a Blender compatible skeleton, with all the bones pointing in a uniform directions. This is easiest if that direction is +Y, but you can use the bone-axis settings in FBX import/export to map different axis settings in and out of Blender, as long as they are the same for every bone.

Maya Joint Orientation in a Minute - YouTube

:anchor: T53620 FBX Import - Armatures are incorrect

Sorry I don’t know anything about fbx