Pivot alignment & rotation indipendently from mesh

Hello, I’m new and this is my first post. I hope this is the correct forum to post into.

My problem is that i need to move/rotate the obdata (or pivot) without moving the relative mesh/object.
I need this because the surface i have is oblique (average 55°) and i need to open a cover for a missile launcher (let’s say it’s a normal door) with that angle of 55 degrees, but it’s impossible.
I know i can move the mesh while in edit mode in order to put the obdata on the hinge of the cover, that isn’t not much a problem, the problem is that i cannot correctly open the cover of the missile launcher with a 55° angle.
I need to rotate the pivot/obdata as i want. I know that currently is not possible in blender to move the obdata/pivot freely from the mesh it belongs to, but i know there are some script out there that may allow this.
I’ve searched a lot in these forums, all i could find were these resources:

The last two links seemed to me the most useful, but i get an error when trying to apply that script… Can anybody help me out to sort this? I remembered in max it was possible to move pivots and rotate them freely… i think this is a very basic modelling issue, without this it’s quite hard to work…
I’m attaching a couple of shots to explain. In the second one you can see the cover of the ML opened as i want, but i had to rotate it many times, this way I lost the original position and such… If i could apply a rotation of 55° to the pivot then i can open/close the cover of the ML in just 1 movement… now it’s pretty impossible!! Hope this helps to explain me.
Thanks in advance,


Snap your 3D Cursor to the point you want with Shft-S >> Cursor to Selected, then move the Object Center to the Cursor in F9 >> Mesh tab >> Center Cursor.


Thanks for the answer,
but positioning the pivot on the cover’s hidge is not the main problem here. The problem here is that it’s impossible to rotate the cover with an angle of 55° in the direction i need, because the pivot cannot be changed in rotation…
In screen one you can see that my object surface is 55° rotated from normal. I then need to open missile launcher covers in the way you see in screen 3. But i can’t do the operation in 1 movement, i have to rotate the cover 3 times!!! How can you do it in an easier way if you cannot rotate cover’s pivot as much as you want? I’m getting quite mad with this…


Try using the widget manipulator in Local mode. Activate the hand icon in the menu bar, set it to control rotation, and select Local from the rollout menu. If you don’t like the transformation widget, you can do R-Z-Z to rotate a selected object about its local Z axis.

Many thanks, the manipulator mode may come handy. Anyway I’ve noticed that the manipulator worked as i wanted (it allowed me to rotate x axis as 55° compared to normal) but when i joined the missile launcher to the rest of my spaceship, the object lost it’s “55° rotation” so i’m still in the same trouble… because now the object behaves like the rest of the ship (which was never rotated). So do the covers for the tubes. Isn’t there an option/command to reset the data acquired from an object (so that it shows rotation x0,y0,z0 in the transform properties)?
I’ve also tried to use the axis orientation copy, but i get an error when copying the axis orientation from the cube (with y rotation set to 55°) to the cover of the missile launcher:

Text from blender:

Traceback (most recent call last):
File “<string>”, line 112, in ?
File “<string>”, line 77, in applyTransform
AtributeError: ‘NoneType’ object has no attribute ‘verts’

Thanks for help!

Isn’t there an option/command to reset the data acquired from an object

Do Ctrl-A in object mode to apply size and rotation on each mesh before you join them and you should be ok.

I think you get that error from the axis orientation script when one of your objects is not a mesh (ie a curve or NURBS surface).

useing the method above make the new center for the doors at where you want the hinges to be.

then what I would do is make the doors a child of the the tubes. this way any rotations to the tubes would be locked together with the doors.

then simply rotate the doors localy to any angle you want. :wink:

Right now Blender is just doing it’s job really, you have the doors set as completly seperate objects from the tubes so it treats them as such.

I’ve found that mastering Parent/Child is key to animateing mechanical stuff in blender. and it looks like your going down that route to so I thought I better post. :slight_smile:

heres a little avi showing a box acting like a hinge at a wierd angle. the plane just represents blenders default grid so you can see the freeform angles more clearly. This was quickly done in less than 3mins with a single ipo curve. (honestly the time to upload the avi took longer than it was to make :wink: )


Ok, so I guess there must be a command to make nurbs/curves become meshes, am I wrong? (Lol for the noob question :D)

@Ouch, yes you’re right, i’ve done this: I took one tube and its cover, i set them back on the vertical axis (90° Angle and not 55° as i used to have), Crtl-A them, and then rotate them both to 55°. I had the job done this way, now i’ve got my cover opening with the right angle over its tube, thanks!
It’s quite a tricky way to do the job (it’s very strange you cannot modify the pivot indipendently from the mesh, do you know if this feature will be implemented in the next versions of blender?).
It seems I’ve solved my problems now… Many thanks for your help!!

well the object center IS the pivot point. you can change where the object center is located the way Fligh described.

be sure to alter the object center BEFORE you make parent/child links though.

I can upload a blend file of something rigged like those boxes if you need a referance.

but it’s really not as hard as all this sounds. :wink: