Monster Truck, WiP and Scripting Help!

Haven't really been on here, should be my first post as I've been a bit of a forum lurker and I hope this is the right place to post!


For my rigging module at uni I was asked to make a rig, so I decided upon a mechanical rig focussing on a monster truck. As modelling wasn't part of the assignment I contacted a modeller called Prykie to ask if I could use his Grave Digger model so I could rig it. About 6-7 weeks ago he said yes and I've been learning and implementing rigging since then (bear in mind I'd never really touched rigging before except skinning to a biped).

So far I've ended up with this;


It doesn't look like much as I'm using it as a proxy- so all of my rig is external to my actual model so if anything goes wrong it doesnt break anything important.

It includes

-1 bone for rigging the main chassis
-Spring controller so there's the illusion of acceleration
-Main rig dummy
-All the wheels spin appropriately relating to direction and speed of travel
-Wheels follow the ground plane dynamically using a conform space warp
-Steering wheel turns wheels (and vice versa), steering wheel needs to be turned more than the wheels (like a real car)
-Suspension rigged with lookat constraints
-Car follows a path and wheels rotate
-Body roll relating to steering

And thats pretty much it at the minute. For the sake of testing I haven't constrained any of the rig (so it could break easily, for example the steering wheel could turn the wheels a full 360 degrees) and I also haven't added any rig controllers (to make it easier to turn the steering wheel for example) or any GUI- but for the final rig all of these will be included so it works efficiently.

What I'm planning to include from here to make it more 'advanced';

-Headlights (target spot or opacity mapped cylinder) linked to controller via lookat constraints so they can be controlled (limitedly)
-Boingy aerial with 'stretchy' or springy bones
-Bonnet opening control
-Engine shake over time (after an ignition switch is pressed on the GUI)
-Exhaust flame/smoke over time (after ignition is pressed)
-Dummys contrained around 40% in front of the main dummy linked to the front wheels to allow the car to steer automatically
-Spline on the back axel to allow for drifting
-Body 'lock' constraint circle so that the car can 'jump' and the wheels dont fall off to the ground plane
-Scripting to allow hiding/unhiding of control objects,rig layer, etc

I'm also planning to, but have no real knowledge of how to;

-Damaged mesh with a slider to change between stored poses (for 'dynamic' damage)
-Dirt texture with a slider to change between amount of dirt (or dirt over time- for 'dynamic' dirt)
-Scripting to allow the rig to change between being linked to a path and being free of the path so it can be hand animated

I'm just wondering if anyone has any experience with this kind of thing and can offer me advice, how to make it act more like a monster truck, CnC or links to any tutorials (or help) on some of the things I'm planning to do (especially the scripting of how to hide the controllers/rig layers, how to script the ability to change from the path to free animation, etc)

Hope this all makes sense anyways :)
Thanks for reading


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bendjamin's picture

post www

post www

senor-cojones's picture

Thanks for the comments.

Thanks for the comments. I'll try and add that functionality- originally I was thinking that an animator, in theory, could just adjust the current path, but I do see your point and it would be a very useful addition, thank you!

br0t's picture

I have no experience with

I have no experience with car rigging, but for me it looks good what you've done. The gui is quite self-explaining and well-arranged. I like the idea with the build-in particle controls. Only thing i miss right now is a way to pick the path which the car will then follow ?
Anyway, well done :)

Never get low & slow & out of ideas

senor-cojones's picture

Pretty much nearing

Pretty much nearing completion with this

Here's an image of my rig:

and my Youtube video (sound is quite low):

Would be great to hear peoples feedback on this, as I can put it in my final presentation


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