3Ds Max Animation Exporting for SL

3Ds Max Animation Exporting for SL

This tutorial will cover how to make animations for Second Life using 3d studio max.


– 3D studio max 2010, 2011,or 2012
– Second Life Export to Max Script (thanks to the original script creator, I simply tweaked it a bit)
My Rigged Avatar File to animate with.

Script setup for 3dsmax:

We need to put the Export script in an easy location to use it when we need to.
(Replace YOURUSER in any of the steps below with the server on your machine your using)
1) Browse to: C:\Users\YOURUSER\AppData\Local\Autodesk\3dsmax\2011 – 64bit\enu\UI\usermacros
2) copy the “Second Life Export to Max Script” into that usermacros folder
3) Open 3ds max and click the Customize User Interface option at the top
4) Click the Menus Tab
5) Click Category and select “Second Life”
6) Hit the + next to MaxScript
7) Drag the ExportToSecondLifeBVH UNDER the “Debugger Dialog” and above the “–End of Menu–“

(Reference image for 4 – 7)

8) Click save and overwrite the existing “MaxStartUI.mnu” default file

9) Close Max

10) Reopen max and click on the MAXSript dropdown at the top and you should now see:

Yay script setup complete!

How to Export your animation

This section will show you how to export your animation (this is assuming you already created your animation and are ready to export.)

Collapsing Layers:

If you have Created a Layered animation then you MUST Collapse it in order export it to SL
(hopefully you also created animation layers by selecting the entire skeleton you were working on when you created the new layer)
1) Select the whole skeleton your working on. (all bones hands, feet, head, etc)
2) Click on the lowest layer (Bottom of the list, Not the base layer):
3) click collapse until you collapse all to the base layer
4) click Disable Animation Layers


Finally on to exporting the Animation for Second Life
!) select all the bones of the figure you wish to export the animation of to SL.
2) click the MAXScript dropdown and select “ExportToSecondLifeBVH”
3) On the popup you can click export and save it to the location of your choosing
(Optional) You can uncheck “Include T pose at Start” if you are going to use BVH Hacker
Thats it! Import into SL and your done.


If you notice some wierd bends of a body part in SL then you may want to use BVH Hacker and use: Prepare –> !Zero Checker then resave it and import into SL again.
A T pose frame is required in the beginning for SL to understand what bones are going to move. So either Use BVH Hacker: Prepare –> Set T pose. Or make sure when exporting from max you select to add T pose.
Never ever choose the “Include T pose at Start” when exporting if you are going to use bvh hacker.

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