Parenting objects to a rigged model?

I am a Newbie, so please excuse me if I am missing something obvious in this glitch I have come up with.
I have just successfully finished rigging my model but realised that there some further objects that should follow the main object when animated. In object mode, I tried to make the secondary objects children of the main (now rigged) object Parent, but when I returned to Pose mode the main object had lost its rigging from its Armature. Then I tried in Object mode to join object meshes as solution, but came across the same outcome. Is it always necessary to Parent all meshes before any rigging is done?
Please let me know how I can get round this. Thanks

Cafangeles,

I’m no expert, but I have recently finished this tutorial. In the tutorial, they use a Master bone in the rig that permits moving the entire character using a single bone. Here
The bone can also be used to parent other objects to, and will follow the character.

Best of Luck!

I had the same problem and probably this is a good solution!

I have noticed that when trying to parrent a group of objects (some of them parrented already ) to a main object - the previous parrenting was lost and all objects are now children of that main object. And that is the reason to separate the armature from the object.

I don’t know why Blender breaks the previous parrentings, but it will be nice if there is a way to keep them.

Hmmm, I don’t understand what you’re trying to do.

If you’ve used an armature modifier to deform a mesh then you don’t usually need to parent the mesh to the armature. If you do parent it, you parent it as a normal parent, not an armature deform parent (because the deform option is essentially another armature modifier and this will cause you trouble).

You only need to use an armature modifier if the mesh is deformed by more than one bone. If you have separate meshes being moved by separate, individual bones (like parts of a robot, for example) then you only need to parent each mesh to its own bone and not use a modifier.

If none of this helps, then can you give a simple step-by-step example, maybe with some pics, to explain the problem in detail?

No, you don’t have to parent all meshes before rigging but you do have to respect the parenting relationship (if you did the standard Ctrl-P method) you constructed with the armature when you do want to add additional objects to the main object … I kind of doubt that your main rigged object has lost it’s relationship to the armature (unless you "Alt-P"ed it for some reason or in Object Mode parented the armature to one of your other meshes before you made them the child of the main mesh/object … in which case you are creating a loop in the parenting relationship…)

If you want secondary parenting/hierarchies from the main hierarchy you have already set up (in this case the armature with ITS hierarchies) then you need to make the secondary objects follow the armature’s hierarchy NOT the mesh object . Because the the mesh is now the child of the armature (even if only applied from the Modifier Stack), you need to parent the subsidiary objects to the the armature by: creating and assigning a bone to the said objects from the main armature hierarchy or by making them the children of a particular bone you want them to be the child of that bone - although the first option is easier and more flexible - just create a bone in armature edit mode and make the objects the “child” of that bone by simply selecting the bone in Pose Mode and then selecting the the object and use the usual Ctrl-P method to parent the object to the bone and select the “to Bone” option . This will make them a part of the armature’s hierarchy and give you more control because the constraints available for the armature type hierarchy (like say for example with the the IK constraint) is more “robust” then the constraints available for objects in Object Mode . Hopefully this will give you the results you want .

@ AndyD : You can do both (parent and “make real” the armature modifier) with out any problems if you remember to only select either the “Vertex Groups” or “Envelope” option in the Modifier stack . In fact “making real” the the parented armature in the Modifier Stack can be very useful for adjusting meshes for proper deformation because you can have it applied in Mesh Edit Mode (the armature pose)… Though you might have to re-construct vertex groups if you do this as the X-mirror mesh function doesn’t properly work when this is applied (I just “discovered” this today to my chagrin) … But not if you use the “Envelope” mode for deforming the mesh in which case if you run into problems after using the above method just un-parent and delete the modifier from the stack and re-parent and and re-“make real” in the modifier stack … It’s kind of sad that not too many tuts cover the “envelope” method of deforming a mesh … In my experience this method can give you really good results in even the most poorly developed topology because if you set it up properly it can give you good “neutral” weights and not the default (red) 1.0 value which everyone defaults to when they only work with vertex groups to deform the mesh …

Thank you everyone. I will try out making the additional objects child to a bone in Pose Mode and see how we get on (creating a secondary heirarchy)