This project explains how to rig a rotary engine. The rotary engine was a
crazy and yet beautiful piece of engineering that powered aircraft in the early
years of aviation. Most famously known for powering fighter aircraft in WWI,
they spun with the propeller at tremendous speed thus expelling oil in the face
of the pilot and making the aircraft difficult to handle due to the gyroscopic
effect of the engine spinning. The unusual way the engine worked led to a unique
design which we look at in detail in this project via a cutaway model that
reveals how all the elements of the engine moved and interacted with each other.
The focus of the tutorial is automation. When finished the entire engine rig can be driven by a single keyframed channel. This is an ideal tutorial for anyone who wants to dig into what has now evolved into very capable animation system within modo.
The videos are narrated in English and are most appropriate for people with some modo experience.
Aircraft Rotary Engine: modo 401 Animation Includes:
Video Parts 01 - 02
Total Running Time: 1 hour 27 minutes
Intermediate modo user
The Video Tutorial was developed using modo 401.
Detailed Descriptions of Videos in Album
Video Part 01 – Rotary Engine
In this first video we start by rigging the engine’s pistons using a combination of positional, directional and intersect constraints. We also make great use of many of the new set-up tools to ensure that Items are aligned correctly, and look at how to minimize scene clutter during the process. We finish by looking at channel linking.
Video Part 02 – Rotary Engine
In this second video we focus on the Rotary Engine’s unusual system for driving the cylinder valves. To re-create this we utilise path constraints, Inverse Kinematics, and take a deeper dive into channel linking using different types of channels to drive Items and Deformers. We finish by exposing the controls that are needed to operate the rig. We accomplish this by utilizing display objects, user defined custom channels and channel hauling.
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