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Locking objects/attributes/modifiers in position to import?

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Chris Lambright
Locking objects/attributes/modifiers in position to import?
on Sep 12, 2012 at 5:17:07 am

I'm new to Maya and have a situation where I need to import one scene containing a set of polygonal objects into another scene prepared earlier. I created a scene with one primary polygon object that is surrounded by a few others, including some Paint Effects objects that use Modifiers to constrain their positions, etc. What I need to do is to import this scene and then be able to position it where I want it, and have the surrounding objects, Paint Effects et al, hold their relative positions.
What's happening is that when I import it and try to position this set of objects, they begin to spread apart. Mainly it seems to be the Paint Effects objects and another ring of objects, positioned along a curve, that spread out as I move the group of them. For some reason, even if I select all objects at once, if I drag upward along one axis...some objects shift upward far more rapidly than the others, sort of expanding along the direction rather than staying where they should. The Paint Effect objects seem to move while the modifier surrounding them doesn't, and the result is whacked out. I need everything to move in the same direction and the parts hold their proper relative positions.

I'm stuck on why this is happening, but I suspect it's something simple I'm missing. So, how can I 'lock' them together so that they move as one object. (If I 'Combine' them, would that lock them as one object, or would that eventually make things worse?)
Thanks,
Chris


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keith mcgregor
Re: Locking objects/attributes/modifiers in position to import?
on Sep 12, 2012 at 6:14:07 pm

So when you imported them they came in a group?, try grouping it again, apply freeze transformations and see if that works. Maybe you don't need freeze transformations?
The combine action would only be for polygons and won't affect other types of meshes or painfx, unless you convert paintfx to polygons. I ran into this problem too with paintfx on a mesh and when I grouped them again it seemed to work, don't know why though, besides the fact that their scales and world positions were different.
Hope it works
-Keith


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Chris Lambright
Re: Locking objects/attributes/modifiers in position to import?
on Sep 13, 2012 at 11:17:23 pm

Thanks for the replay. When I imported the scene everything did come in, but not as a group per se, so I grouped them after they were imported.

I think one problem is that I'm simply too new to this to really understand the what/why of how things work. However, I did find that if I selected specific items from within the group (rather than trying to select group as a whole or all the individual elements) then I can move things together as wanted.

But it only seems to work when I move them in the xyz dimensions. If I try to rotate the selected objects as a whole, the individual parts seem to want to rotate in different directions. As an example, imagine a model of a bus, with wheels and windows on a basic cube, with an inner cube having seats.. When I select everything together and try to rotate it as a whole, the outer 'bus' cube rotates one way, the windows rotate differently as a group, the wheels, rotate another way, and the inner cube with the seats seems to morph and rotate some other weird way.
I tried combining the objects, hoping that would lock everything together, and it did, but then everything becomes part of a new polysurface (or whatever the term is) and I no longer seem to have have control over the individual windows, wheels, etc. to change attributes.

What I'd like is to have these 4 or 5 objects act like they're one object, keeping their relative positions when moved or rotated, but still be able to change attributes of the window glass, the tires, seats, etc. individually, and key frame them as necessary.

I'll take any suggestions, admitting up front that I realize I may have done all this to myself :/
Thanks,
Chris


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