rigging a hand holding a sword

hey all,

what would be the smartest (and easiest to animate) way to rig a hand holding a sword to make it look correct? i’ve modeled the same character without a sword, holding with one hand, and holding with two hands (like a samurai). i’m comfortable with rigging, and have done several characters, but i’m wondering how to set up the bones for the single handed grab and the double handed grab…

what i want to do is be able to move the sword and have the hand(s) follow and specifically have the sword rotate at the guard where the highest hand is grabbing it. i don’t think i need finger bones, so would just a hand bone work? or would i need to add armature to the sword with an ik set up?

any help would be greatly appreciated!!

What I generally do is parent the sword to the hand bone, and move the hand bone. For me that is way easier than moving the sword and having the hand follow the sword instead.

what about with grabbing with both hands? would i parent the sword to the top hand and parent the bottom hand to the sword and then just animate the top hand (meaning would the bottom hand just stick to the sword handle and move with it?)

i would just try it and see, but i’m at work

thanks for the help!

That’s not a bad idea but I’ve never tried it. When I do two-handed animation I parent the sword to one hand and then move both hands manually. I just rendered a short clip I’m working on and you can see how it works:


d’oh! double post

thanks scott

your video is perfect! that’s exactly what i want to do

i’m going to try my hand at animating the cild of constraint so that he grabs the sword off of his hip so that i don’t have to keep switching models

btw i subscribed to your youtube channel

thanks again for the help!