Found way to easy rotate for doors / hinged objects

I am modeling a little house with moving parts, and intend to move them quite a bit once all is done, for drawing reference. I haven’t been happy with my solution for rotating items so far, which was to create hidden lines, whose midpoints I could lock onto with rotate tool. That’s three steps per rotate (after opening container groups).

Today, I realized that adding a hidden line to move the center of a group to the axis of rotation lets me rotate with the Move Tool grips, which saves having to show hidden geo and position/orient the rotate tool, condensing rotation to one step (after opening container groups).

Just thought I would post my new rotation “hack” (which may already be common practice, for all I know…)

1 Like

You can add faces( a cube for example) to the end of the rotation edge you have created to give you something to auto align the rotate to, then put all the bits on another layer so you can just turn the layer off when you don’t need the rotate handles.

Edit: Here’s one from a little while back that shows how you can turn the handle on and off.


Here’s an alternative: When you first create the component you plan to rotate, set the component’s axes at the rotation point. Then, when you want to rotate the object, just hover the Rotate tool until you land on the component’s origin.


I did something along the same lines here a while back:

Component orientation • sketchUcation • 1

Allows for multiple axis of rotation with an independent insertion point ( the component 's origin).

Revising the idea of posing with the Move tool shortcut grips for more complex hinged objects.

My OP method wasn’t perfect for items with visible hinges, as the bounding box center was drawn away from the hinge by attached objects (the doorknob), which makes the door wobble off the hinge during rotation. Went down the same path as @shawb in their linked post, but still using just one hidden diagonal edge. Making sure the hidden edge extends in x and y dimensions enough to either equal or exceed the “real” bounding box ensures that the axis of rotation sticks to the center of the hinge, and makes the rotate grips easier to get at as well. However, for nested hinged objects, keeping the hidden edge smaller is better.

Here I’ve made posing my room divider as simple as possible. You can even flip the whole thing closed in three steps (plus opening the half-group).

Here I’ve made my in-progress wind-up gramophone arm easy to pose, with zero wobble on the joints (Still need to resize the arm quite a bit so it fits where it should in both storage and play mode).

Thank you so much… That exactly what I’m trying to do.

1 Like