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  Ball on Rope  
 
Author: Arjun   Level : Intermediate   Environment : Maya 7.0
User Rating  : * * * * *  
 
 
Ball on Rope is step by step-by-step tutorial on animating a ball on rope. This tutorial assumes that the reader is having a basic understanding of Maya toolbox and menu system.

The first step in animating ball on rope is to create 9 cubes with an equal distance between each other as shown in the Figure 1. After this step you need to make all the 7 cubes at the center to active rigid body and 2 cubes at the end to Passive rigid body. Boxes in red are active rigid bodies and boxes in green are passive rigid bodies.
9 cubes with equal distance
Figure 1. 9 cubes with equal distances.

Now the next step is to create a spring between each box with the following settings.
Stiffness  - 50
Damping-  50
After setting stiffness and damping enable Spring rest length. Give a 'Rest Length' value of 2. Refer Figure 2.
String attributes
Figure 2. Spring attributes

Next step is to, add gravity to the active rigid body boxes (red boxes). Now play the time slider and stop it in a position as shown in the Figure 3.

After playing time slider
Figure 3. After playing time slider.

After that, in the front view port, draw a curve with CV curve tool with 2 as the curve degree value as shown in Figure 4 with 9 CV’s.

Then the next step is to create cluster for each CV of the curve and parent each cluster to the respective cubes as shown in the Figure 4, so that the curve also starts acting like the boxes.
Cluster
Figure 4.  Cluster

Now you need to hide the boxes in a layer and create a sphere. After that attach the sphere to the motion path and edit its graph as shown in the image below:

Motion Path
Figure 5. Motion path

Finally, play the time slider. You will get the final output as show in Figure 6.
Ball on Rope
Figure 6.  Ball on rope
 
     
 
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