Grouping parts of 3D model?

Lars_HLars_H Website User Posts: 78 Enthusiast
edited January 2015 in Post-production techniques

I have a problem with a couple of 3-D models of WW2 airplanes I bought from Turbosquid.

The cheapest, a B-17 (35 $) works just fine, no problem what so ever animating the 4 propellers but the more expensive  models of a B-24 Liberator ( 75 $ and 155 $) have the propellers broken up i multiple parts. Why  would anyone want to animate the four blades, tips and center of each propeller differently? The same goes for the landing gears, they are divided into even more small parts. And  all the different parts have very cryptic names so it is almost impossible to know what is what.

Is there a way to "group" the different items so that i can animate the propellers and  the landing gear?

The models are OBJ, 3DS and LWO-format (among others).

Lars H


  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,251 Ambassador

    Not in Hitfilm, unfortunately. Blender is a free 3D modeling program you could use to import the mesh, join up those elements and re-export the mesh. Blender has a steep learning curves, but tons of online tutorials and manuals. 

    Another option is to ask Turbosquid for a refund for the B-17 (turbosquid customer service is good at that) and try another model? Not optimal, but an option. 

    For what you paid on turbosquid you could have gotten the Jetstrike Pack from Videocopilot. That has the B-17 model Simon Jones used in his most recent tutorial, along with other planrs, spherical panoramic skies and explosion elements. If you like the look of that model, that might be an option, too! 

  • RowbyRowby Website User Posts: 58 Just Starting Out

    HI Triem23

    I have a question about Video copilot's Jetstrike pack.

    In Krammer's demo video it shows the various rigs that operate the various groups.   Does Hitfilm 3 support the Jetstrike's pack's rigs?



  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,251 Ambassador

    I don't own that pack, so I can't answer for certain @Rowby. I suspect some of that stuff is IK-rigged, in which cas, no. But props and flaps should be assignable to groups. Let me tag @SimonKJones and @MichaelJames since I think they both have the pack and can answer definitively. 

  • MichaelJamesMichaelJames Website User Posts: 2,038 Enthusiast

    VideoCopilot's 3d models are expertly done.  Big models like Air Force one come in in 1 piece with a millon groups that you can individually animate.  I haven't paid for 3d models outside of video copilot but i do hate that the free ones tend to come in pieces.  I thought someone did a tutorial on how to handle importing those so that they size up correctly, but don't know who did it.  I know it involves bringing 1 model piece onto the timeline and then dropping all the other pieces onto that piece.  I think the tutorial covered how to keep things at the correct size.  I just eye ball it when it comes to scale and rearranging the parts together.

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,251 Ambassador

    @MichaelJames it was Simon who covered importing muli-part models as part of tge 3D model import in HFU2 tutorial. 

    For multi-part model import, you:

    Turn off Center Anchor Point

    Turn off Auto Normalize

    Set a consistent scale for each segment 

    Drag each segment into the same layer on the timeline. 

  • RowbyRowby Website User Posts: 58 Just Starting Out
    edited December 2014

    Following up on @Triem23 's comment...

    I think this is the Youtube tutorial presented by Simon on importing models:Simon's import model tutorial


  • Lars_HLars_H Website User Posts: 78 Enthusiast


    The people at Turbosquid are really friendly and understanding, Igot a refund for the more expensive one (155$).

    I can't find a model of the B-24 liberator inthe "Jetstrike pack" only a B-17, wich I already have purchased from Turbosquid. That model is no problem, what so ever, animating.

    So, I downloaded Blender and imported the OBJ-file of the cheaper of the B-24 models (wich I bought earlier). I grouped the propeller blades, saved with a different filename, exported as OBJ and 3DS  and imported into HitFilm. But with the same result as before.

    Maybe  someone can give me an advice on how to export the file with the objects grouped?

    Best Regards

    Lars H

  • mark_emark_e Website User Posts: 190 Just Starting Out

    if you just did a group it doesn't do what you think in blender :-) it groups everything to allow for easier selection etc. it does not join the objects together, instead if grouping them highlight everything you want to join by shift right clicking on each object in object mode then do ctl J and it will join them all under the last object you selected so to save your self additional work make sure the last object selected has the origin point that you want to use as everything you join will take on the origin of the last item selected.


    Then export that see how you get on, blender uses z up as well so you might get caught out by that but see how you get on.

  • Lars_HLars_H Website User Posts: 78 Enthusiast


    I will try that tomorrow.

    Happy new year to you all from me in Sweden!

    (00,29  january 1st , 2015)

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