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ArtZone Heading
Creating a Realistic Animated Cable/Rope/Flex
Added on: Tue Dec 04 2001
Page: 1 2 3 5 

Go into subobject mode and select the vertices at the other end of the wire - the end that we want to remain motionless (as if plugged into a computer) and make a New vertex group. Click on this (group_01) and then scroll down to the Attached box and tick it. Click the empty space and then select the desktop plane.
Tick Attach to surface and Attach by Pos.This locks the end vertices where they are as they are noe connected to the desk, and the desk aint going anywhere. (of course it's up to you what you connect it to, it could be another moving object).

Now we need to enter some animation for our mouse object. I used the Motion Capture feature in the utilities panel to capture my own mouse movements, but any other form of animation is valid. Nothing to fast or jerky for now, but make it last for about 100 frames to get an idea of the flow of the wire.

Select the wire and in the Sim Cloth roll out hit "Start Calculation". If all has gone well you can watch the computer solve the wire dynamics as the mouse moves. As the shape is 3 sided the solution should be quite fast. You may get some errors at this stage, these are explained in the Sim Cloth documentation and may need some tweaking of settings.

After the solution is finished hit play and watch your simulation. (on slower computers you may want to render a preview) It's unlikely that you'll get the right results first time - more often than not the wire will move too fluidly. Increasing the Slip, Gravity, and Air resistance will illeviate this.

Again reading the Sim cloth documentation will give a better idea of what these effects actually do. Remember to Clear the sim before trying new settings or wierd things can happen.

When your sim looks good add a Nurms mesh smooth modifier on top of the Sim Cloth. Our triangular wire becomes a hexagonal wire.
You can step up the iterations, but it looks fine like this for the most part. IMPORTANT: Do not go back and tweak Sim Cloth settings with Meshsmooth on top of the stack - Sim Cloth should always be at the top or all manner of horrible things can happen.






 
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