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Rigging Jet Engine Nozzles in Blender


Learn how to rig a model without using armatures in this new CG Cookie Blender tutorial.

Using just empties and constraints, this tutorial will teach you how to model and rig the exhaust “cone” on the back of a jet engine. This particular mechanism is typically found on modern fighter aircraft (such as the F-18 Hornet), though it has other applications as well. The tutorial assumes a familiarity with the Blender interface, and an ability to do basic modeling.

This technique is quite straight forward. After modeling the individual blades, rigging is done using Empties, parenting relationships, and the “Locked Track” constraint. No armatures are used. Once everything is said and done, the nozzle is easily animated by scaling a single control empty.

About the Author

Avatar image for Bart Veldhuizen
Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.


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