Opinion on hand rig

Hey guys. I’ve been wondering some time what’s the best way to rig a hand. I usually rig them like feet. The body may move around, but they always stay in the same position, because they’re disconnected from the arm. This way I can easily make the character touch or grab on to things without making his hands sliding away. On the other hand it’s a bit more difficult to animate them.
So, what do you think? Is it just simpler to make a simple IK constraint or is it more practical to use the way I’m using?
Thx in advance :slight_smile:

just build it and try it, you may build something you may end saying YEH! that’s it, an change it because you find you don’t find it as convenient as you thought anyway.
so build them both, or better yet, build a bunch of em.

The best way is to make both IK and FK posing, with a switch of some kind between the two. The switch can be a driver that influences the Ipo of the influence of the IK, or you can simply key the IK influence by hand.

For good character animation of arms, you definitely need both IK posing and FK posing, because the two methods do totally different things.

If you haven’t already, download and study Mancandy here:
http://freefactory.org/

A detailed description of IK and FK rigging, switching, and posing in Blender can be found in the book in my signature.

Bugman’s right. Get the book!

Make sure the X-axis button is selected in the Armatures panel so you can do symmetrical rigging (this cuts the time of rigging in half). And be sure that once you have put the bones in place through the hand mesh that you reset all the bones’ roll angles with Ctrl-N, I cannot stress this enough, ESPECIALLY when you create action constraints for them. In this case, when it comes time to copying and mirror pasting the poses from one hand to another, as long as they’re called the same thing except with a .L/.R to them, if the roll angles havent been reset, your gonna end up with funny moving fingers that move in impossible directions

that bone roll angle thing is not true, sometimes you specifically do NOT want this. You don’t want funny roll angles, but auto recalculate isn’t always the solution. You may end up doing some manual tweaking anyway. I had an arm rig where recalculating the roll would bork up the roll/twist of the arm, with or wihout constraints, with or without resetting/reappling/rebuilding everything from scratch (it was an earlier verison of the guy in my sig)
The workaround was to just edit the model to slightly alter the arms so the bones could be placed slightly differently.
The X axis mirror is very handy if you want to make sure the bone rolls stay consistent/mirrored troughout the enitre process. otherwise you could just as well model half, duplicate the armature, mirror it, flip bone names and join them. works about as well.

It is a good idea to study mancandy, or ludwig, blenrig, Delder etc etc, and your book is quite a good read too bugman.

But may I also suggest looking at the rig in my sig, it is quite complete, simple and has those FK/IK sliders as well, with not to many bones. I think it’s easier to learn from that than it is by jumping into mancandy straight away, which is quite vast in options.
Delder is also a simple rig with those kind of sliders. look it up.
(do remember to set the pivot back to median point for my rig, I accidently left it on 3Dcursor, I’ll have a new version with some more extra’s soon by the way.)

Thx guys. I’ll look up those rigs in detail to see how do they work. I actually downloaded some of them but haven’t looked in detail. :slight_smile:

Well reseting the roll angle worked for me and fixed the problem (the mirrored pose making the fingers move sideways before the fact) LOL