Trying to rig a player model - Need Help

For the past 2 months I’ve been trying to rig a 3D model with the valve skeleton to use as a player model for Garry’s Mod. I’ve followed nemerous videos about the topic but I always run into issues with the final product not coming out the way it’s supposed to be.

I understand how to import my 3D model, I use blender to import the vanilla male01 model for the skeleton. I then edit the joints until they are properly in line with my model and go through the entire weight pairing process. I usually spend upwards of 4 hours to even a couple days getting everything weighted properly. I save this new weighted 3D model as MYMODEL_reference.smd. I then customize the male_01_physics to fit my model and reweight that to the same skeleton I used for my 3D model. I then export that as MYMODEL_physics.smd.

Now here’s my problem, to my knowledge, you have to include a ragdoll.smd located in a ANIMS folder to properly compile ( at least I think its required). Using the unmodified male_01 ragdoll.smd to compille my model gives a result that looks like this:

Ignore the missing textures for now, but as you can see the model is having some serious issues with its arms. This is what my 3D model’s skeleton looks like without the mesh,

And here is what the unmodied ragdoll.smd looks like:

Now obviously the two skeletons don’t match up, so I can see why im getting the arm issue, but every tutorial I’ve read or watched never shows how to make a custom ragdoll.smd based off of your 3D model’s reference skeleton. Trying to edit the ragdoll.smd in blender is hopeless because it looks like a terrible mess of points.

**TL;DR: **I don’t know how to make a custom ragdoll.smd for my custom valve skeleton.

If anyone has any insight on how to do this or any tips on making a player model in general then please leave a comment. I am one of those types of people who wont finish something until I get it right, I’ve been at this for almost 2 months now and its bothering me to no end that I can’t seem to do it right.


Regarding the ragdoll.smd, I believe you could just remove the mesh and then export the bones.
( Like the second image, assuming that’s the skeleton where you rigged it )

That would then be your ragdoll.smd, no need to do the whole process again.

Hope it helps

Edit :

I tried haha, sorry to hear that, wish you good luck.

I’ll give this a try. I never thought to do this because the ragdoll.smd has joints in the skeleton that the regular skeleton just doesn’t have. Regardless, I’ll load up blender and give this a whirl and report back.

EDIT: Immediately after posting this reply I remembered that the ragdoll.smd has animations baked into it, where as the regular skeleton does not. I really don’t think it will work, but im still going to give it a try.

EDIT 2: Blender does not allow exporting of only a skeleton unless it has the ragdoll animations, or “Armatures” baked in. So no dice. Thanks for your suggestion though!

Can’t you make a single frame animation of your skeleton and then export? That’s what I normally do with all my ragdoll smds.

So I took your advice and added a single keyframe and I was able to export the skeleton as an smd. I compiled the model again and after removing some lines about $proceduralbones I was able to compile the model without it goofy up the arms.

You’re idea worked wonders, although It only proved that I made a giant mistake when weight painting as the arms and legs are weight painted for the oposite side of the skeleton as seen here:

This mostly likely happened when I noticed the mesh was facing the wrong direction I must of rotated it so it fit the skeleton, but I guess it already was weighted so everything was backward. Oh well, Ill reweight it for the 5th time, no biggie.
As for the materials, I converted them all to vtfs, and made the correct vmf’s for all, but the game doesn’t seem that it knows whats to do. I have a addon that lists every material of a give model and the output for my model was “___error”.

Oh well, my main problem is fixed. Thank you again DwarfOverlord! Hopefully I’ll get the rest of the issues sorted out. Have a nice night!

EDIT: I figured out my texture issue. Long story short, the textures have to be the same exact name as they are in your editing program. Now they are coming in just fine. Used this thread for help