Maya: Merge Install Zoo Tools Pro v1

Maya: Zoo Tools Pro

In This Class You’ll Access…
This page will show you how to install Zoo Tools Pro Version 1 with the manual “merge” style install. This install type will merge with any changes you (or your company) has made to Maya.

If you’re a beginner and would like an easier install method, see our replace style installer here The alternative installer will completely replace your Maya settings and is easier to install.

Please login to view the content.

Running Time: 1:11 hrs
Software: Maya 2017-2020
Instructor: Andrew Silke

Class Time: 1:11 hrs

1. Zoo Tools Pro: Merge Install Instructions (10 mins)

1.1 – Copy Scripts (2:35 mins)
1.2 – Install Hotkeys (1:51 mins)
1.3 – Preferences Setup (2:45 mins)
1.4 – Tools, Channel Box (1:28 mins)
1.5 – Disable Arnold (1:33 mins)

2. Installing Third Party Scripts And Plugins (8:20 mins)

2.1 – Installing 3rd Party Scripts (3:14 mins)
2.2 – Plug In Loading (1:48 mins)
2.3 – Renderman Install (3:18 mins)

3. The Zoo Tools Pro (C3dC) Hotkeys (15 mins)

3.1 – Hotkey Overview (2:42 mins)
3.2 – Major Hotkey Changes (3:00 mins)
3.3 – Modelling Hotkey Overview (3:54 mins)
3.4 – Rigging Hotkey Overview (2:29 mins)
3.5 – Animation Hotkey Overview (3:40 mins)

4. Customise Your Hotkeys (10 mins)

4.1 – Create Hotkeys (2:46 mins)
4.2 – Connect Hotkeys (3:21 mins)
4.3 – Add Custom Scripts (1:17 mins)
4.4 – Keeping Custom Hotkeys (1:25 mins)
4.5 – Other Functions (1:40 mins)

5. The C3dC Shelf (14 mins)

5.1 – Poly Icons 1 (2:04 mins)
5.2 – Poly Icons 2 (2:32 mins)
5.3 – Anim Icons (2:23 mins)
5.4 – UDIM nCloth (48 sec)
5.5 – Camera Icon (1:43 mins)
5.6 – Trigger UI (1:06 mins)
5.7 – Shad Switch And Assort (1:39 mins)
5.8 – Attr Icon, Save (1:52 mins)

6. 2017+ Shelf/Hotkey Updates (12 mins)

6.1 – Constraint MMenu Updates (1:25 mins)
6.2 – New Skin MM (4:24 mins)
6.3 – Easy Hotkey Switch (39 sec)
6.4 – Cam, Oct Hole (2:29 mins)
6.5 – Assorted Icons (1:54 mins)
6.6 – Rig Shelf Update (2:02 mins)
Subscribe now! Cancel Anytime, Keep Tools and Assets Forever!


  1. sheng_jin
    December 29, 2018 at 3:14 pm ·

    Hi Andrew,

    I’m having trouble to get the C3dc shelves to show up properly. The shelves do show up except two of them are empty. I followed exactly the way you said in your video to install those shelves and scripts. Switching between different taps doesn’t seem to refresh the shelf and make the icons to show up. I can delete a specific shelf then manually reload it back and the icons do show up properly, however, if I hit save all shelves and quit maya, next time when I relaunch maya, the shelf goes blank again. Anyway, hope this makes sense to you.

    Let me know if you have any clues on fixing this problem.


    • Andrew Silke
      December 29, 2018 at 9:04 pm ·

      Hi Sheng, yes this seems like the usual flakey Maya shelves issue. I haven’t heard of it staying around as you are describing it so it sounds like you have it bad. Try closing Maya and backing up the file


      Just rename it to something like “userPrefs.bak”

      Then load Maya. I’m curious if that solves the issue for you. We aren’t doing anything weird on our the shelves, it’s all vanilla Maya. Usually, the click back and forth between the shelves fixes it. I’ve had it take quite a while, but it’s super rare. And once it rights itself it seems stable. Also, which version of Maya are you running out of curiosity? Like 2018 WIth Update 3? Or 2017 with Update 4?

  2. heklopez
    March 2, 2019 at 9:42 am ·

    Hey Andrew,

    Im having the same issue with the shelves. Nothing there. I followed the instructions but no luck. Im running maya 2018. I just get a warning saying The shelf “C3dC has items that cannot be read.


    • Andrew Silke
      March 2, 2019 at 5:31 pm ·

      Hi Hector, welcome to the site. The shelf issue has been tracked down to a Renderman issue. Basically, Renderman screws up Maya’s shelves and it goes for all custom shelves. It’s a known issue and there is a fix, see that on this page in the General Section with the point
      Missing Icons (Shelf Issue): Some shelf Icons do not appear in the C3dC Shelves (Likely Renderman Issue)…
      See this page

      The best fix is to rebuild your userprefs.mel instructions are on that page, the first point.

      If you do not have Renderman installed, or this issue persists, please let me know.

      • Andrew Silke
        March 3, 2019 at 12:38 pm ·

        It looks like the order of the shelves is also important. The Renderman shelf should be in the “last” tab. It seems it corrupts all shelves after but not before.
        I’ve created a quick video about that here. You can also delete the Renderman Shelf, the next time it loads it will automatically recreate it like the prefs file. When the Renderman shelf builds for the first time it always builds it last.
        You will probably need to restart Maya and the shelves should be working.
        See this video how to reorder the Renderman shelf last and also how to delete it, then reload Renderman (you may need to restart if Renderman is already loaded).

        • Andrew Silke
          March 17, 2019 at 1:14 pm ·

          We took this discussion privately and Hector reported the following…

          “Thanks for the help. Uninstalling renderman didn’t work for me. At the end I had to uninstall maya and install a new version of it and then all shelfs appeared. Everything is working 100% now.”

          I’ve updated the known issues page with other steps for anyone in this situation which is related to Renderman bugs. See
          Missing Shelf Icons (Shelf Renderman Issue):

  3. mgm34
    May 27, 2019 at 1:38 pm ·

    I can’t seem to copy the files from Winrar to the scripts folder. I’m not in the prefs folder either.

    • Andrew Silke
      February 14, 2020 at 2:29 pm ·

      Hi mgm34, try downloading the files again, there are no issues with the .zip files, but sometimes the .zips get corrupted in the download.

  4. carinaohlund
    June 24, 2019 at 8:57 pm ·

    Hiya, I can’t get the Zoo Tools Menu to appear.. everything else appears, although the functions on the shelves can’t be loaded.

    • Andrew Silke
      February 14, 2020 at 2:32 pm ·

      Hi, this should be pretty rare, feel free to email me (apologies for the late reply, these comments have been skipping my gmail filters).

      Email me at info@create3dcharacters if anyone else has the same issue. We have had some problems with 2020, I’ll update this page when those are solved.

  5. Derek Chow
    February 13, 2020 at 1:00 am ·

    Hello. I’m a new subscriber. Haven’t install anything yet but I noticed that all of the install packages are up to 2019. I’m currently using Maya 2020. Should the “merge” method work okay?

    • Andrew Silke
      February 13, 2020 at 10:50 pm ·

      Hi Derek, yes Zoo 1 is tested up until 2019, all of our focus is on Zoo Tools 2 which is definitely working in 2020. I’ll have a look and let you know.

      • Andrew Silke
        February 14, 2020 at 2:33 pm ·

        Yes, confirming Zoo1.4.2 is broken in 2020. we will look into a fix next week. Zoo2 is up and running in 2020. Please use 2017-19 until we fix the issue. It’s a Qt upgrade error, they’ve Qt which is what we build all our UIs in 2020.

  6. Derek Chow
    February 13, 2020 at 1:20 am ·

    Just followed the merge method to install ZooTools. The menu did not appear. Is it not supported in 2020? If not, I could fall back on 2018 but upgraded to avoid timeline playback lag while animating.

    • Andrew Silke
      February 14, 2020 at 2:34 pm ·

      See the above comment.

Leave a reply