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2 Shifter Tips: Files sizes and proxy attributes


Hey everyone, I just learned two things today:

  1. mGear makes it very easy to add proxy attributes. (Attributes that live on multiple controls, and can be edited from any of those controls.) However, be very careful with this. I put some of my arm attributes, like ik switching, pole twist, etc. on the hand control.

So when the animators go to load a hand pose from Studio Library, it changes the pose on their arm. Not good. So make sure not to “pollute” your attributes outside of where they belong. With great proxy comes great responsibility.

  1. File sizes can grow huge! With Shifter, you build -> test -> delete -> build -> test -> delete.

But I didn’t realize, each time I do that, there were nodes that are getting left inside my guide scene. Things like controller tag nodes, and more. My file size grew from 6MB up to 153MB over the past few weeks, and I just finally noticed! After the fix, my final rig just dropped from 160 MB back down to 14 MB!

So make sure to occasionally (or via script each time you build) clean your guide scene.


Thanks for the Tips.
But how do i clean my Guide scene?


Hi guys

You can just export your guide group and open the result of that export. This will be a clean result.



Yeah I “export selection” on the guide once in a while. But here is what you can do every time.

The two biggest things are the controller tags and ngSkin layers. If you delete your rig without deleting ngSkin layers first, then they stay in the scene as loose nodes.

I put the following code in a PRE script that runs before each time I build. So these nodes can never accumulate more than from the last build.

import pymel.core as pm

# Delete all ngSkin nodes
# Delete all controller tags


As @Jerome commented you can export and import the guides with the new mgear


Also is possible to build without import the guide using build from guide template file command :slight_smile: So just create a new scene to clean up for each build