View Full Version : LW9.6 ignores rigging in FBX files

03-16-2011, 06:54 AM
Hi guys. I was importing an FBX file and when I got it there, none of the rigging seemed to be there. No bones or anything, just the mesh.

I exported it from Carrara 8 if anyone's heard of that. The rigging some to come out with the FBX as I reimported it back to Carrara and the rigging showed up.

Any ideas?


03-16-2011, 07:11 AM
No clue, but this just happened to me a few days ago. Annoying to say the least.

03-16-2011, 08:10 AM
So as a test I imporetd to C4D... I had to remake IK... but other than that, rig worked perfectly... I think I can push this into Messiah too...

Dude, WTF Lightwave! I'm counting on you!

I actually saw a post a while back saying you had to import the rig by itself...? and then import the model and then reskin it...? uh... Here's the link to the thread.


Was there an FBX importer/Exporter?

I just whent to add an object and did it that way. maybe there's another way it has to be done.

03-16-2011, 08:42 AM
If you import into layout, it should come through with bones no problem... Ive not encountered an fbx file that doesnt yet.

However rigging is something entirely different... you won't get IK, constraints etc to transfer between packages at all, because each package is different, and has its own tools for setting these things up.

Skinning info transferred will also often be sketchy... standard weights associated with given bones should come through, but skinning methods diffeer between packages aswell, so you're unlikely to get the same looking deforms.

03-16-2011, 08:43 AM
Hmm. I've only ever used 'open scene' in Layout with FBX. I'm nowhere near LW to find out if that makes a difference, though.

03-16-2011, 09:49 AM
Well maybe the bones are there... but they don't look like they're there. Or maybe I don't know how to get to them? Hmm...

03-16-2011, 09:54 AM
if they are there, its pretty obvious, just look in the scene editor.

If you're still having problems, perhaps post the fbx for others to check.

03-16-2011, 12:06 PM
Have you tried 9.6.1? LW's FBX support gets better (or at least behaves differently) with each version, so give it a try.

FYI, for rigged characters I find LW 10's FBX support is working much better than any of 9.x FBX IO tools did, though recently I found that LW 10's importer replaces lights from a Fusion FBX with nulls where in 9.6.1 it brought in actual light objects. (I'll say it again, please give us options!)


03-16-2011, 01:20 PM
I'll try 9.6.1. Can I get that from the normal download page where I'd get 9.6 in my account?

Here's the model. If you import it anywhere else like to another program, it works fine... but no rig showed up in lightwave 9.6.

I'd like to try 10, but there's no way I can upgarde right now so I don't wanna tempt myself.

03-16-2011, 01:22 PM

03-16-2011, 01:38 PM
Sorry I forgot to post it.

It's there now. Also, I don't see the 9.6.1 update in my account.

EDIT: It's just a test so there's nothing really exciting about it. I don't get why none of the bones came in when they appear fine in other programs.

03-16-2011, 01:56 PM
9.6.1 is in beta. It's free to registered 9.6 users but you need to register it separately to download it. Look in your account page under the Product Registration list and select Lightwve v9.6 Open Beta. After you register for the beta you will get another license key that that you can add to your current license key file.

BTW, this will also get you access to the 9.6 Open Beta section of the forums.


03-16-2011, 02:09 PM
Well, dont know what to tell you, I open it in 9.6 and there's the joints, plain as day.

03-16-2011, 02:47 PM

Let me see if I can explain it better this way.

I don't know where they should be or why they're not showing up.

Oh... and as an added bonus, you get tohear my awesome voice... :P

I'm still trying to setup 9.6.1

03-16-2011, 02:51 PM

I just loaded it in 9.6 and 9.6.1 and I see a rig too. Sorry, I know that's not much help but it looks like it should work.


03-16-2011, 02:55 PM
Did you see the video I just posted. I loaded it normally and no right.

Now LW's just not being fair... WTF LIGHTWAVE???!?

I'll try restarting the computer. I've already tried closing and reopening the program.

03-16-2011, 03:37 PM
Looking at the video now. Haven't watched all of it but right away I see what's happening. Try loading the FBX as a scene; this will bring in the rig. I don't think you'll like what happens to the mesh though.

If you're using 9.6, just select all the joints, press Ctrl r to unrest, then press r to rest. This should put the mesh back in place. Actually, now that I recall what happens, this probably won't fix things...I think there was an issue with axis orientation of the mesh being different from the rig and you needed to correct this by rotating your object in Modeler, and some other silly workaround.

(BTW, it sounds like you're on the path to making all the same wonderful discoveries I did last summer. I would definitely get into the beta forums...I'm almost sure you'll find some useful information in there. Just ignore all my whining; I was getting very frustrated back then.) :)

FYI, it's typical to use Load From Scene to load a rig with mocap or animation already applied. I think most users actually use the option in Load From Scene to bring in only the motion data and apply it to a finished Lightwave rig. (This is how I'm using FBX for my short film project.)

As an alternative, you can use faulknermano's multi-motion (http://thespread.faulknermano.com/_theoldspread/index.htm) scripts to save all the motions from an imported fbx rig to a directory and then load all the data onto your final Lightwave rig. This only works for 9.x though; 10 changed a few things which make FBX imports incompatible with these scripts. The Load From Scene Load Motion Envelopes Only option works well though if you follow certain rules. There's a topic about this somewhere in the forums.

Rebel Hill and Cageman have posted some very helpful videos on the subject. Do a search for these guys in the forums.

Hope this helps.


03-16-2011, 04:21 PM
Yup... you're loading fbx as an object... so tis only loading the object, you need to load as a scene.

re the hierachy/deform issues... you'll want to unparent the "model" item (the mesh itself), that is parent it to the scene, then parent the hip bone to the model, clear the leftover items, then select all bones and rest them, your model and rig now fit together properly, no crazy rotations/deforms.

03-16-2011, 04:42 PM
I didn't have any problem loading the FBX to get the joints into LW.

As both Greenlaw and RebelHill says, you need to use Load Scene and select the FBX.

03-16-2011, 09:49 PM
Ok thanks. I'll give that a try... although as for the beta. It says I should have an installer... but all I see is a zip file with some folders in it. Where's the actual installer file?

03-16-2011, 10:15 PM
So I have to pull the model out of the hirarchy into the main hiararchy where the main camera and light are? (I mean the ones that come with the empty project>)

I try to drag it out, but it won't come out. It won't come unparented from the FBX scene. I can't make it be part of the main scene or I don't know how.

Alright I think I got it to KIND OF work.

I unparented the model from the FBX part. Then I unparented the bones from the FBX thing too. Then I rested the bones.

After that, I parented the hip bone to the Model.

So now it works... but the problem now is that when I bend the joints, things sort of... break apart. The mesh doesn't really bend like it's suppose t.

For example, it's going like V when it's suppose to go like U if that makes any sense.

Any way to fix this? I ultimately want to port this to messiah and animate it there.

Thansk for all the help.

03-17-2011, 01:53 AM
Any way to fix this? I ultimately want to port this to messiah and animate it there.

Hmm.. guess I've seen that before. Try selecting all the joints and search for the option "Remove RPR", confirm then rest everything again just to be safe. Depending on the source application it does help to fix things on the Lightwave end.

My net has gone completely haywire (as in molasses-slow) this week, or else I'd put up a quick video showing you how to do it. Anyways, good luck, hope you get it right.

03-17-2011, 03:54 AM
Remove RPR...? Where do I find that? Is that in the scene editor?... or is that in the Modify tab somewhere on the left in the bone tools?

03-17-2011, 04:59 AM
For example, it's going like V when it's suppose to go like U if that makes any sense.

Not really sure what you mean... are you saying the deforms are too tight.

Anyway... I think you maybe got a couple orders wrong...

Parnet hips to mesh, mesh to nothing, rest bones. Works just fine.

03-17-2011, 05:25 PM
one thing interesting I noticed the other day (in 9.6.1) is that if I have a rig in a LW scene and am using Z-axis bones and then export the FBX, reimporting the FBX imports the same scene rigged but with joint bones instead and it renames all my weightmaps and sort of slides them down the chain and creates some new "zero map" weightmaps for other hold or position bones....??


03-20-2011, 02:53 AM
Alright, I've finally got out of LW10 and went back into Lightwave 9. The bones are bending correctly... sort of. THey mesh doesn't so much bend as it does break. I've attached a picture to show you what I mean.

This doesn't happen in 10. How do I fix this?