animating parts with anglelimit mates?

I'm animating assembly that have their range of motion controlled by anglelimit mates and I'm running into many horrendous problems.
For some reason when repositioning parts in animator the angle limit mates will a: flip b: invert c: violate their min/max angles. This same assembly moves perfectly when in the model tab and it is properly mated.
In a related question: I need an animation where unfortunately, 1 subassembly moves from point a to b then stops - then an access panel that is attached to the previous assembly needs to open - but in order to do this I need to 'freeze' the first subassembly as the transfer of motion will shift the first sa back towards it's starting point. You can't change mates without animator redefining the entire timeline so the only solution I've found is to render 2 seperate animations so you can fix sa's the way you need to. Am I missing something?
change of topoic: I noticed in sp2 2007 that my photoworks help wont open? Also, animator used to have an independent help file in the help menu -now gone?
TIA
Zander
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Ok I found the animator help file (embedded in sw help now)
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Hi Z,
In my limited experience of animator the one thing I've found helps is to copy the key-point if you want something to stay where it is while something esle moves. So if you find something suddenly moving where you dont want it to, find the movement key in the animator thing and delete it, or make usre that you copy the original position to the new time-line position and it shouldn't go anywhere.
No guarantees though, animator is a nightmare.

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Thanks Lee,
I've found the solution which is basically to forget using limitangles and then moving these parts in animator.
Replace limitangles with regular angle mates and then animate these mates (at the bottom of the animator feature manager will result in nice controllable motion with the added benefit of locking down your flexible sa's.
It's too bad in a way because when your done animating you have to go back and toggle angle mates with limitangles to return to the functionality you have in the 'model tab' (I'm resisiting calling it model space and animator space'!)
Zander
Lee Bazalgette - factorydesign wrote:

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I've found that limit angles have a nasty habit of flipping sides anyway, regardless of animator.

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Hi,
Limit mates are a problem for me as well, with little solutions available... I do A LOT of mechanical motion testing and design.
However, if your limit is say a number like 100.00 try changing it to 99.99... or from 0.00 to 0.001, etc. I know it seems strange but this has worked (almost always) for me in the past.
I guess the trick is to keep the numbers thousandths from the limit... seems to work, worth a try.
Good Luck,
Aron
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Thanks Aron, I'll give that a try.
Zander
Aron (bacsdesign.com) wrote:

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Using the angle mates instead of limit mates is definitely the way to go, although even the regular angle mates have a nasty habit of flipping sometimes.
To keep the mates organized, I usually create an "animator" configuration that has them all set up the right way, then I don't have to keep track of which mates to turn off and on, etc.
Zander wrote:

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That's a good idea - I don't use animator often so it's been a slow learning curve - but I think I'm getting it now :). My main gripe is that you have to manually copy keys to prevserve position of parts - ie. I'm at the 15sec. mark and I move a part that hasn't been moved before. When I move it that 15sec-key essentially sets the stop point but doesn't set the start point at all. So you need to goto the 0sec mark, copy key then paste key at the 13sec mark (eg.) if you wanted to restrict the motion between 13 and 15 seconds.
It would be could in you could bracket the timeline with start and stop (in-out) markers.
Zander
esobota wrote:

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You know it, Brother. I had an animation where I had to rotate a component from 0deg to 90 deg. No matter what I did, as I got close to 90deg it would start heading backwards. I tried editing the mate planes so it would go from 90 to 180, but got the same results (and all other permutations - 45 to 135, etc). I eventually got beat - it was the first time that I can recall that I could not miracle a workaround for an issue. I tried it again in Beta of 2007-same issue with the same failure. At least I got it reported clearly at that time. I wonder if it has been addressed? I found that mates were so flaky with animator (lately-2006/2007. It used to be workable, circa 2004) that I essentially gave up on the product. I used a 'storyboard' of still images to communicate the concept instead. Some workaround :( I will, of course, try again, but wonder if any attention has been paid to fixing it? Ed
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