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After Effects War of Gears: Expressions

Setting the rotation offset based on main gear rotation By Ko Maruyama
We covered the ability to make gears in the earlier tutorial, but using the shape layer repeater allows for it to rotate in one direction.  In this tutorial, we'll set up a secondary gear to rotate in the opposite direction so that the gears' teeth will mesh together.

Making gears go around, or wheels go around, has been the topic of many good discussions.  You may have shied away from them before because they usually end up with discussions about math.  The same might be true when it comes to writing expressions in After Effects.  You might decide to hardwire it the brute force way (not because it's the only way) because expressions requires some crazy kind of java coding that you'd rather not stick your toe into.

Well, I'm not going to talk about the math aspects of wheels, or the language of expressions, but I will try to break down the reverse rotation without going to tech....


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Ko Maruyama is a freelance animator in Los Angeles.  In addition to working on film and broadcast animations, Ko teaches at Pasadena's Art Center College of Design - focusing on motion design.  When working, writing or testing software allows, you can find him lending a hand in the After Effects board and lurking among the Cinema4D, Visual Effects and Photoshop posts within the DMNForums.
Related Keywords:tutorial, video tutorial, ko maruyama, adobe shape layers, gears, cogs, after effects cs3, cs4, rotation expression,


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