I created a characters using separate pieces/objects now it is sperating during animation

If i created a character using several objects how do i combine them so its one connected mesh for animation? i tired ctrl + j and tried doing it another way by doing a boolean union. but after I parent my mesh to armature pieces of my mesh are not connected they are being ripped away during animation.

Isnt there a way to make it all one unified mesh. how do i make sure all of normal are ok. Does it involving removing doubles?

i created the head separately, i created all of the body parts separately now I want to unite all of them.

This is not a weight painting issue. I am not joining the objects into ONE mesh. how do I do that other then ctrl J or or boolean union because those methods do not keep it together during animation.

You can have multiple objects constrained to the same armature, you don’t have to join the meshes first. I’ve done that myself, parenting separate objects for the head and body and body armor to the same armature and it works great.

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so i parent different parts to different bones? i still want it all to be one mesh

After a while, when creating a charactor you have to do some wight-painting.

Joining everything into one mesh is not essential, but can help with exporting to a game engine or using it as part of a particle system… but it’s best to do this last. If you join to easily, don’t worry - you can separate by material, or by pressing L to select joined vertexes in edit mode.

I would not use boolian combine to combine the parts of your character. Boolians are messy.

Parenting different parts to different bones is great for rigid objects like helmets, etc… It’s actually more efficient in turms of computing power than using an armature mod - but there are reasons that you want everything to be part of the same mesh with an armature mod… You can parent it to your armature with empty groups, find the right vertex group (named after the bone you want), enter edit mode and put all the vertexes into THAT group, and then it will move entirely with that bone.

Once you’ve done some tests to see if your model bends with your armature correctly, THEN combine join all your models into a single object.

What is the order of things? how do it set it all up create the armature first then what? do i assign empty vertex groups to each bone? how do i parent do i parent them? bone, object or empty group?

how do i do that? do i parent with empty groups or do i parent to bone?

Rigging is a complex subject with a lot of options, and there are several tutorials on it. You can build a character starting with the armature, but it isn’t the usual order to do things. If you parent an object to an armature “with empty groups” is an option.

I started blender 3 weeks I was doing fine for the first week until I tried to animate one of the first ever characters I made then I hit a two week snag that almost turned me off completely. If you could just help get me past this one hurdle my newfound love for blender would be re ignited.

Let me start from the beginning…

#1 I am new to modeling so my first character was designed using separate objects and because of that when i try to parent using automatic weights it wont even work I get a bone heat warning and I tried for days to fix it watching many many tutorials on fixing the issue nothing would work.

I then figured the problem is because my character is not one mesh even though I tried ctrl +j and that did not work out because when i tired parent it just using a couple of bones I got it parent but when i tried animating it or rotating the armature/bones in pose mode parts of my mesh were being ripped away even though ctrl =J was suppose to join them. I even undid the ctrl +J and tried to connect my charactor into one unified mesh by using a boolean union modifier. I even tried the bool tool but I get the same results.

I then after some research figured the key to this whole is thing working is I have to do a retopology remodel becuase my mesh is so messed up from the dr. frankenstien parts I used to create this monster that the 3d printer toolkit would not even fix it. I am not yet skilled enuff yet to do a retopo job so I downloaded instant meshes and it looked promising at first but it returned my model with holes in it so i couldnt use it.

the whole reason i figured i had to retopo my model was that i downloaded a base mesh and tried to assign automatic weights and it worked fine and if figured it worked because it was all created as one mesh not combined dr Frankenstein parts.

But what I want to know and no one has been able to fully answer my questions or find a good tutorial is how do i am manually assign weights to my characters bones/armatures.

my questions are…

What are vertex groups how do i assign them to the bones in my armature?

When parenting what do i select do i parent my mesh to object, bone, or d oi parent using envelope or empty weights?

From what I can grasp so far is after i create the bones for my armature…head, arms, legs etc I then manually select a group of vertex i want to assign to a specific bone? then after that I parent (not sure what option to use) then I can go back into weight painting and make sure everything was assigned properly. And then I should be able to animate my character right?

I hope i explained things in way where my question(s) can be finally answered.

I figured out how to make vertex groups now how do i assign them /parent to individual bones? what option do i choose? empty groups?

Hey you should watch this video first before modelling and sculpting.Its quite helpful.
Link: https://zachariasreinhardt.com/introduction-sculpting-in-blender/

Skeletal animation is applied to a mesh using the “Armature” modifier. The mesh object doesn’t actually have to be parented to the armature object, it’s the modifier applied to the mesh object which actually deforms the mesh. Any number of mesh objects can use the same armature in the armature modifier. This is great because you can model different body parts and clothing accessories and set them to be animated by the same armature and they will all move together as if they were a single mesh.

Vertex groups determine which bones will influence a vertex, and the weights in each vertex group determine how much influence the bone has on a vertex. Bones will only influence the positions of vertices who are part of the vertex group whose name matches the name of the bone. To manually set up the weights you create vertex groups to match the names of the bones and assign weights determining if the bone has full or partial influence.

Every thing brhumphe says is good advice, but I will point out that while you don’t have to have an object parented to an armature, it is a very good idea. Otherwise, you can move the armature and the mesh will stay in place and get more and more distorted.

My normal method for rigging a character (once I’ve created the mesh and armature)

  1. Patent the flexible mesh(s) to the armature and select automatic wieghts
  2. Parent the rigid mesh(s) to the appropriate bone if you are using this purely within Blender
    or
    Parent the rigid mesh(s) to the armature and select empty weights, then go into edit mode and select all… in edit mode for your rigid meshes, select the appropriate vertex groups (mesh properties) i.e. the one who’s name is the same as the bone it is linked to, and press A on the 3D view to select all the vertexes and press add to group.

Now - start posing your armature - going for some extremes in terms of how far you expect to have to bend the joints, and see how well the mesh bends to the armature.

You can now select the armature and select pose mode - then select a mesh as well and go into weight paint mode. You can now select a bone and paint it’s weights. The mesh will appear red if the vertexes are connected to that bone and blue if they aren’t, green if they’re halfway.

As well as painting your meshes red to connect them to a bone, you’ll have to paint them blue if they are attached to the wrong bones.

Probably best to watch a tutorial on rigging.