Help with rigging realistically in Blender?

I can’t rig realistically at all. Automatic Weighting just makes the skeleton bend like a noodle, and taking the weight off of some of the bones breaks it whenever a physics mesh is applied to it (exporting the model to Source). If anyone knows how to get it to work, let me know.

I use weight gradients for most of my work. The general process is to paint a nice smooth gradient with your add brush, subtract from areas you don’t want, click the normalize all button, and limit weights per bone to 3.

With the way blender’s SMD tools import armatures, automatic weighing isn’t the best rout to go. Something I’ve done recently is to create a Pitchipoy Human meta rig, delete the face bones, use symmetrical editing, and align the bones to the model. I then parent the mesh to the metarig using automatic weights, delete the rig, then rename all the vertex groups to their corresponding source engine bones. This usually results in nice and clean weights that require little cleaning.

Does it generate a skeleton once it’s exported as well?
EDIT: Turns out it does, but it’s a lot smaller than the base mesh.

I should’ve been a bit more specific. After you parent the mesh with automatic weights to the metarig, I delete the metarig and rename all the vertex groups to whatever source-engine skeleton I’m using. So if I’m using the default Gmod skeleton, I’d rename the vertex group “shin.R” to “ValveBiped.Bip01_R_Calf.”

After renaming all the bones to their Gmod counterpart, I delete the metarig and parent the mesh to the Gmod skeleton using “Armature Deform.”

So once that’s done, the bones should link up properly and it’d face the right way in HLMV. (I use Crowbar for compiling models)

If your renamed the vertex groups correctly and your end-skeleton is one that originates from source(be it a tf2 or hl2/gmod skeleton), it should all work properly.