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Cloth Parameters and Their Effects

For Poser version 5 or later

Poser's Cloth Room has the ability to create extremely realistic cloth effects. Its simulations however use many parameters whose exact effect on the behavior of the cloth items is not always obvious. This tutorial should help clear up some of the most common questions and provides settings for some common fabric types. Explanation of Cloth Parameters

In this section we'll describe each parameter and provide illustrations of the effects of choosing extreme settings. Each example shows the end product of a 45-frame cloth simulation with all settings other than those specified being left at their defaults. Note that altering certain parameters in isolation won't produce the same dramatic results that can be achieved by adjusting two or more parameters together (cloth density and dynamic friction, for example.)

Unless a particular effect is needed, it's usually best to use the default settings; extreme settings (like some of those shown here) can cause the cloth to behave unpredictably.

1. Fold Resistance-

This parameter goes from zero to 100; it determines how 'stiff' the cloth is- as you'd expect from its title, the higher the fold resistance, the less the cloth can bend when it contacts an object. In conjunction with the other parameters this can help define how thick the cloth appears to be.

2. Shear Resistance-

Shear resistance has a range of 1 to 1000; it defines how much the cloth tends to retain its shape as it folds. This differs from fold resistance; the shear resistance of a fabric determines how much or little it deforms when actually folding.

3. Stretch Resistance-

This is fairly intuitive; stretch resistance determines how much the cloth will stretch as it deforms. Its range goes from 1 to 1000. Setting this value very low can actually create interesting effects as the cloth 'oozes' over the surfaces it contacts. Very high values can make the cloth more 'wrinkly'. Most fabric should have a fairly high Stretch Resistance.

4. Stretch Damping-

Stretch damping has a range of zero to one. It works as the fabric stretches- it represents the tendency of the fabric to lose energy as it stretches, and stay stretched out, versus its ability to snap back to its original structure. A piece of fabric with low Stretch Resistance behaves very differently with low versus high Stretch Damping- think of a sheet of flexible rubber versus a thin layer of tar, for example; both stretch easily but the rubber regains its shape quickly (it has lower stretch damping) while the tar, with its higher damping level, stays stretched.

5. Cloth Density-

This parameter accepts values from zero to one; it represents how much gravity affects the cloth item. This is derived from a real-world setting for how much the cloth weighs in grams per square centimeter. Heavier cloth (leather, heavy wool, canvas) would have a higher Cloth Density, and would behave differently- friction will affect it more, wind force will affect it less and as the cloth moves it literally will appear heavier.

6. Cloth Self-Friction-

This parameter also accepts values from zero to one; it determines how much the cloth sticks to itself, as opposed to the next two settings which determine how it interacts with other objects. Self-friction typically has its most visible effect in animations as the cloth 'catches' on itself more as the value is increased.

7. Static Friction-

This parameter accepts values from zero to one; it determines how much force is required to start the cloth sliding over a surface from a standstill. The impact of changes in this setting can be increased by increasing the cloth's density.

8. Dynamic Friction-

This parameter is similar to Static Friction but determines how much energy is required to keep the fabric moving over a surface. Like Static Friction its effect may be enhanced or lessened by the Cloth Density setting.

9. Air Damping-

This parameter accepts values from zero to one; it represents how much influence the 'air' in the scene has on the fabric. Very low settings allow the fabric to drape quickly and pay less attention to the air- similar to increasing the density but reducing Air Damping has no effect on friction. High settings cause the fabric to interact much more with the air, to the point where it may actually 'float'.

10. The Collision Friction setting-

This checkbox tells the cloth engine to ignore the Static and Dynamic friction settings specified by dial and instead use the settings from the Cloth Collision Objects dialog.

Test Fabric Settings-

Cloth Sim Settings & ResultsFold ResistanceShear ResistanceStretch ResistanceStretch DampingCloth DensityCloth Self-FrictionStatic FrictionDynamic FrictionAir Damping
Default Settings550500.010.0100.50.10.02
Low Fold Resist0.550500.010.0100.50.10.02
High Fold Resist5050500.010.0100.50.10.02
Low Shear Resist51500.010.0100.50.10.02
High Shear Resist5500500.010.0100.50.10.02
Low Stretch Resist55010.010.0100.50.10.02
High Stretch Resist5505000.010.0100.50.10.02
Low Stretch Damp5505000.0100.50.10.02
High Stretch Damp550500.90.0100.50.10.02
Low Density550500.01000.50.10.02
High Density550500.010.0100.50.10.02
Low Self-Friction550500.010.0100.50.10.02
High Self-Friction550500.
Low Static Friction550500.010.0100.010.10.02
High Static Friction550500.010.01010.10.02
Low Dynamic Friction550500.010.0100.500.02
High Dynamic Friction550500.010.0100.510.02
Low Air Damping550500.010.0100.50.10
High Air Damping550500.010.0100.50.11

Sample Cloth Settings

So, with those parameters in hand, how can we simulate specific fabrics? Here are a few examples, arranged in a table with their settings-

Cloth Sim Settings & ResultsFold ResistanceShear ResistanceStretch ResistanceStretch DampingCloth DensityCloth Self-FrictionStatic FrictionDynamic FrictionAir Damping
Soft Floaty Silk210400.0100.0050.0000.2000.0100.150
Heavy Slippery Silk330750.0500.0300.0000.3000.0500.050
Light Wool660550.0500.0050.0300.7500.3000.015
Heavy Wool1075600.0500.0200.1000.7500.3000.020
Default Settings550500.0100.0050.0000.5000.1000.020

The results-