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Articulated joints


Help! any answers of if some kind soul can direct me where to look for some would be most appreciated.

Im building an articulated gauntlet in 3ds max and have made it as a physical model. but i want to do the fitting as a 3d model as opposed to editing planes.

what program should i be using for its further iterations? or can i do this efficiently in max?

I need to
Bend along edges without changing surface area of the plane/polygon.
add virtual rivets to test articulation points.
have it set so a polygon cannot enter another (collision settings?)
export as OBJ.