Modo action center comparison in Blender?

Hey there,
Modo user here looking to switch to Blender.
One thing I have not really figured out is a good workflow to replace using action centers in modo.
Specially the Element version. Basically this allows the user to temporarily set the world orientation aligned to a face or edge etc, and thus move anything selected along this orientation.

I found in Blender there is an option to use the 3d cursor for this, though I find it a bit clumsy.
Another option is using custom orientations, which also is a bit too many steps for my liking.
Could anyone here advice me on a quick way to do this?

The goal is to be able to quickly jump around orientations when moving this, ideally I would just move the 3d cursor and it would automatically align to the faces/edges allowing me to move things along that orientation.
Added to that a quick hotkey to jump from normal orientation to the 3d cursor one etc.

Any other advice or references for Modo users making the switch would be most welcome.


I have a custom menu that pops up when I press the ~ key. It contains a lot of commands that I frequently use and one of those is to snap the cursor to a selection. If that is too many key presses for you (2 in my case), you can assign a keyboard command to do the same thing with 1 key press. Then you just have to make sure the pivot mode is set to 3D cursor. I seriously doubt it’s any simpler than that in Modo.

Hmm, snap cursor to selection sounds good. Is this a script or a native blender command I can just hotkey?
Thanks for the reply

It’s native to Blender. I don’t think it has a default hotkey, but it’s easy to assign one via Blender’s User Preferences. I’m using a script that allows me to assign commands to my own popup menu – [Addon] Advanced UI Menus
It’s a little quirky to use, but it’s great.

The good news is, that Blender 2.8 will have this feature by default.

I’m sure you’re accustomed to your work around, but for what it’s worth, Shift+s will give you a menu for snapping the cursor to the selection and vice versa.

And yes the 3D cursor improvements in 2.8 is much needed. Setting custom orientations is a pain.