[Tutorial] Making an Adjusted FBM

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SickleYield's avatar
By an "adjusted" FBM I mean one different enough from the base to require adjusting the rigging.  You've seen these for Genesis - the Troll, the Freaks, and Mavka are examples.

For this example I'm using Blender and DAZ Studio 4.5 Pro, but it should work with other modeling software if you can figure out the scaling.

This was another request.


First of all, it is necessary to export a "base" Genesis to morph.  

Load Genesis into your scene, or whatever other figure you wish to use.

Go to Parameters and turn the subdivision level down to 0 and the resolution to Base.  This is very important.  If you do not do this, your new morph will not load.

Now file--export--wavefront/obj.  I choose to work at Poser scale on import and export because it works with Blender's base import/export scaling, but that is completely up to you.

Choose a location where you will store this morph base.  I have a "UsefulOBJ" folder containing all my FBM bases in my Blender directory.  Export your Genesis morph base to this directory, giving it a reasonably name such as GenesisMorphBase.

Import the morph base into your modeling software.  Make sure you import with polygroups and retain vertex order if those are options.

Now create your morph by editing this base's shape.  I made a quickie "amazon" proportion set taller than the base to test mine.

Export the obj.  Make sure you retain vertex order again.

Select your loaded base-rez Genesis in DS4.5.  Start Morph Loader Pro.  It looks like a flexing arm with a letter P on the bicep.  I have mine hotkeyed to ctrl+m since I use it so often (and Transfer Utility to ctrl+t, but that's beside the point).

Navigate to your exported morph.  Notice it uses the name you gave the obj when you exported it, but you can double-click on this to change it if  you wish.

Expand the options and choose a group for it, or create a new one.  In this case I'll use Actor/Female/Fantasy Sci Fi.  

Don't leave it as Morph/Morph Loader Pro.  That instantly tells the customer you didn't bother and it looks bad when others use the morph.

Click Accept without changing any other options.

Your morph should now load.  A dialogue box will pop up telling you if it has.

Dial it in to 1.0 or 100% in the Parameters.

Turn on the Bone tool.  It looks like a bone with a bandaid across it.

Now you can see that the skeleton of Genesis is too small or too large for your scale-affecting morph.  Right-click and choose edit--adjust rigging to shape.

Turn on Orientation on the screen that comes up.  You should be able to leave other things as they are and click Accept.

Now you can see your skeleton is refitted to appropriately match the morph.  It's time to freeze this to the morph so that it turns on when the morph is on.

Go to the Property Editor tab.  If you don't have one you can create one using Window--Panes (tabs) -- Property Editor.  

It is normal for it to take literally five minutes or more for this to load on a Genesis with lots of morphs.  Go do something else while you wait, such as writing the first half of a tutorial on your deviantart blog.  Or inform me in the comments how to get around this.

When the property editor is finally accessible to you, go to the right-hand panel, right-click, and choose ERC Freeze.

In the dialogue that comes up, choose Genesis as the Figure and also as the Node.

In the Property dropdown below that, find your new morph.  This can be difficult.  Try typing the first couple of letters of it to scroll to different things with those letters.

Once it is selected, go down and uncheck Restore Figure Rigging.

Now select Accept.  You may have to wait a while again while it processes the new frozen ERC.

Now go back to your Translate widget (or whichever) and select Genesis.

Choose File--Save As--Support Asset--Morph Assets.

In the dialogue that comes up, put in your screen name for vendor name and the name of the new morph under Product Name.  

Expand the morphs dropdown below, find your morph, and click the box to its left to put a check mark in it.

Choose Accept.

Now delete Genesis from the scene and reload it.  If you dial in your morph with the Bone tool up, you should now see the skeleton adjust with it to the proper size.


This should work with any TriAx figure in DS4.5, not just Genesis.

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daywalker-designs's avatar
It mostly works with Genesis 3 figures as well; the only thing that doesn't seem to be the same is the ERC  Freeze step. I have had to do that twice when rigging my two characters.
SpyroRue's avatar
This been in my browser favorites for long time now, I kept forgetting to favorite it on my DA Account LOL

Allot has changed in DS with ERCs "Property Hierarchy" particularly different LOL I'm finding ERC is shrinking the Skeleton from what was a beautiful "adjust rigging to shape" earlier. Was the two steps merged or something? Either that or Ive just been away from ERCs too long and lost practice LOL
SickleYield's avatar
This tutorial is outdated.  Using Property Hierarchy tends to give weird results now.  I'll do a new one when I get time.
SpyroRue's avatar
Yes I can see the weirdness LOL Is it just buggy atm? Ive lost track of their changes to the tool every time they change it its like "we fixed it!" and I think to myself, "then stop fixing it :P "

And looking forward to it, I constantly refer to this tut, but I had a break for a while and hadn't yet explored the replacement Hierarchy. 
SickleYield's avatar
In my opinion it's actually greatly improved, it just requires a different workflow.  The crashing on load of stuff is basically gone forever, and a lot of things are accessed from Parameters Edit mode; and other stuff (like JCMs and MCMs) are set up by dragging things from Parameters to the Property Hierarchy panel instead of thrashing around trying to get the ERC freeze settings right.  I've personally found the 4.6+ edition much easier to deal with when setting up rigging.  Once you know the steps it really is better.
SpyroRue's avatar
Most definitely! Ive been at it for hours without closing DS and no Crashes :D Was also very easy to locate the FBM in the list too, all structured so much better.

And I discovered that the shrinking skeleton after freezing the ERC freeze is not carried on to the saved Morph asset, so is more a visual thing during the process I guess. So good news is, the ERC seems to work correctly in the finished FBM :D
Skiriki's avatar
Wootzor! Thank you, I remembered ERC Freeze, but forgot what to pick! This cracks the tough nut! To the favorites it goes!
SickleYield's avatar
You're welcome! :)
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