KineFlex (SMR Tool)

Description

Kine­Flex is our rev­o­lu­tion­ary on-the-fly skele­tal sys­tem, intro­duced for the first time in EDAPT v.4.0 in 2018.
KineFlex
Kine­Flex uses Smart Mag­net Rig meta­da­ta to allow an ani­ma­tor-friend­ly imple­men­ta­tion of For­ward and Inverse Kine­mat­ics, with bones that exist only dur­ing the cur­rent trans­for­ma­tion and do not impose any rigid­i­ty or struc­tur­al changes to the Clas­sic Tween approach.

Essen­tial­ly it is an instant­ly gen­er­at­ed skele­ton which takes the cur­rent loca­tion and posi­tion of the ele­ments as ini­tial state (on Mouse­Down) and dis­ap­pears after the end of the trans­for­ma­tion (on MouseRelease).

Functionality

An extreme­ly pow­er­ful tool which allows pre­cise quick pos­ing, uti­liz­ing the avail­able hier­ar­chi­cal struc­ture of a Smart Mag­net Rig.

Kine­Flex icon KineFlex appears in the tools palette next to or below Free Trans­form (Q) tool.
In Ani­mate 2020 and new­er, click on the at the bot­tom of the tool­bar, find the tool’s icon in the pool of tools and drag it to a desired loca­tion in tool­bar. (Click for details…)

Kine­Flex can be cho­sen direct­ly by click­ing on its icon in the tools palette or by using Kine­Flex (SMR Tool) com­mand — EDAPT short­cut G — which makes Kine­Flex the cur­rent­ly active tool.

Kine­Flex cre­ates on-the-fly tem­po­rary bone chains accord­ing to a For­ward or Inverse Kine­mat­ics mod­el. These chains exist only dur­ing the pos­ing oper­a­tion, while the char­ac­ter retains all flex­i­bil­i­ty. Sym­bol and Lay­er struc­ture, typ­i­cal for the Clas­sic Tween work­flow remain unchanged.
Essen­tial­ly, this is vir­tu­al Bones imple­ment­ed well and ani­ma­tor friendly.

Modes of operation after choosing the KineFlex tool G

Forward Kinematics (FK)

  • mouse­drag: Soft FK rota­tion – rotates the clicked ele­ment while mov­ing all its chil­dren rel­a­tive­ly to its trans­for­ma­tions, retain­ing chil­dren’s direc­tions unchanged.
  • Alt+mousedrag: Hard FK rota­tion – rotates the clicked ele­ment and all its chil­dren keep­ing them ‘firm­ly’ attached to their rel­a­tive positions
  • Shift+mousedrag: Move chain – moves the clicked ele­ment and all its children
  • Ctrl-down: Hold­ing down [ Ctrl ] key while work­ing with Kine­Flex will tem­porar­i­ly switch to Selec­tion Tool (V‑tool).

Inverse Kinematics (IK) interactions with SMR Effectors

  • mouse­drag: IK trans­for­ma­tion of the con­trolled IK Chain. Ele­ments beyond the Effec­tor move in Soft Rota­tion.
  • Alt+mousedrag: IK trans­for­ma­tion of the con­trolled IK Chain. Ele­ments beyond the Effec­tor move in Hard Rota­tion.
  • Shift+mousedrag-and-drop: Attach­ing a Detached SMR Con­troller or detach­ing an Attached SMR Controller.
  • Alt+Shift+click on an Attached SMR Effec­tor: Switch­es the Effec­tor state between RIK Active and RIK Inactive.

Element Welder for KineFlex

Ele­ments can be weld­ed to their par­ent, using the Ele­ment Welder but­ton in SMR Helpers pan­el. Press­ing it welds the select­ed ele­ment of a Smart Mag­net Rig to its par­ent. Weld­ed ele­ments move in Hard Rota­tion. Read more…

Suggested use

Pos­ing; Advanced char­ac­ter animation

Where does it work?

Stage, Cur­rent frame – pre­ex­ist­ing key(s)

EDAP Tools shortcut

G (Kine­Flex becomes the active tool); Shift+G (Kine­Flex Quick Settings)
Mod­i­fi­er keys: Alt+ (hard rota­tion); Shift+ (move); Alt+Shift-click on Effec­tor (Switch RIK State)

Notes

Kine­Flex can be dis­abled via the EDAPT Con­tol Pan­el > Man­age Com­mands > uncheck Kine­Flex checkbox
Impor­tant! Kine­Flex only works with Smart Mag­net Rigs

Due to severe bugs in Ani­mate, in EDAP Tools v.6.6 Lay­er Par­ent­ing inte­gra­tion has been dis­abled by default. Read more…

Error messages

Kine­Flex:
Dupli­cat­ed ele­ments on layers:
“AAAA” — “BBBB”.
SMR ID: X

Read how to resolve dupli­cate ele­ments ID con­flicts here…

Known issues

Plu­g­in tool script error in method mouse­Up: If you see this mes­sage in Out­put, that means that the JSFL engine has crashed Kine­Flex. You need to restart Flash / Ani­mate to be able to con­tin­ue using it.

Par­ent­ed Lay­ers: Shrink­ing and drift­ing of rigged ele­ments after mul­ti­ple Kine­Flex trans­for­ma­tions when Lay­er Par­ent­ing Shell is on, due to a long-stand­ing bug in Ani­mate. Read more…

Video demonstration



All our videos are 1080p. If for some rea­son full HD is not avail­able here, try watch­ing them on youtube.

This tool is part of the Flan­i­mate Pow­er Tools pack­age. Down­load the lat­est ver­sion from the Down­loads page.
 
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