Limber Lite

Limber Lite is a free, simplified version of Limber available from the Animatable website. It's the quickest and easiest way to get started with character rigging and animation in After Effects.
Most of this User Guide is simplified. Check out the user guide for the full version of Limber for more in-depth knowledge.

Installation

Quit After Effects if it is running. Unpack the .zip archive you downloaded and move the file "LimberLite.jsxbin" to your "ScriptUI Panels" folder, which is located here:
Windows: Program Files\Adobe\Adobe After Effects <version>\Support Files\Scripts\ScriptUI Panels
Mac OS: Applications/Adobe After Effects <version>/Scripts/ScriptUI Panels
If the ScriptUI Panels folder does not exist, create a folder and name it “ScriptUI Panels”
Go to the General tab of After Effects’ Preferences pane and make sure that ‘Allow Scripts to access the network’ is checked on.
Once installation is finished, run the script in After Effects by clicking Window > Limber Lite

Usage

Click the New Bone button and you’ll instantly have a limb and two controller layers. Play with the Limber effect on the end controller to change the limb’s length, curvature, and whether it faces left or right. There's more detailed info about limb properties in the Limber User Guide, here.
Parent the start controller to your character’s body, and the end controller to it's foot. Animate the position of the body and the feet layers, and the leg will automatically bend.

Tips + FAQs

How can I make my character's feet automatically rotate?

Instead of parenting the end controller to the foot layer, turn up the Rotate End property to 100%, and then parent the foot layer to the end controller. When you animate the end controller's Position, it auto-rotates and the foot will rotate with it.

Why don't some of the properties work?

Limber Lite generates default bones - the exact same ones as in the full version of Limber. Bones do not respond to Start Size, Middle Size or End Size. They don't respond to Square End, or any of the properties in the Colors section. Bones will change length with Size Scale, if Link Length to Size Scale is checked on. Those properties are all there to maintain compatibility with Limber's other limbs, which can only be handled by the full version.
In practice, it means you can animate a character with Limber Lite bones, and then hand it off to another animator with the full version, and they can turn those limbs into tapers or art-rigged limbs or whatever they want.

How do I duplicate a limb?

You cannot duplicate limbs with Limber Lite. To do this you will need to purchase the full version. If you select all the layers and use After Effects' native duplicate command , you'll find that the duplicated limb layer works with the old controllers.

When I use FK, the hands / feet don't stay attached to the controller.

Limber Lite bones can be animated with FK but to have a layer follow the end of the limb when you use FK, you need an FK controller which is only available in the full version.

Can I add more strokes to the limb?

Bones are a great base for adding more strokes and duplicate shape groups and all kinds of amazing stuff if you just know how to use shape layers. Twirl down the layer, then Contents and then Limb and you'll see Limber's Path and Stroke. You can add more strokes by selecting the stroke and clicking Cmd/Ctrl-D to duplicate it. A more flexible method is to duplicate the entire Limb shape group (rather than just the stroke). Then you can, for example, use Trim Paths with some strokes and not others, and build up several different strokes with different widths, colors, tapers and cap types. Check out the first video above to see this in action.

How can I scale my character?

The preferred method of scaling with Limber is to use a master Null layer and expression-link the Size Scale property to that null's Scale value. But the stroke width of bones won't scale on it's own, so you have to expression-link the Stroke Width property as well. This entire workflow is covered here, in this video.
Last modified 3mo ago