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Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGIS9.1   Mary Swihart Apr 19, 2006
Re: Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGI...   Matthew Streubert Apr 19, 2006
Re: Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGI...   Mary Swihart Apr 19, 2006
Re: Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGI...   Ray Carnes Apr 19, 2006
Re: Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGI...   Mary Swihart Apr 19, 2006
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Subject Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGIS9.1 
Author Mary Swihart 
Date Apr 19, 2006 
Message I have read other posts and the ArcGIS help but I am not having any success in creating a shapefile from the attached DBF. I cannot get the X/Y fields to be recognized. I saw posts where you need to select a projection but I don't know which one to choose. I tried the UTM and did some guessing but it doesn't work. The location is in lower Michigan. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you. 
  Jdata2.zip (opens in new window)
 
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Subject Re: Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGIS9.1 
Author Matthew Streubert 
Date Apr 19, 2006 
Message You need to locate the files (dbf's) metadata. THis will tell you the projection.
You lat long looks like it is in Geographic -> North America -> North America Harn 1983

And your x,y looks to be in UTM for michigan don't know the zone off hand. Remove the 0's from -082, that might help

IF you can't select the x, y when you start the dialogue box and load your file, then try the below mehtod.

An alternative if after projected you still have problems read below:

Open your data (your original dbf, or xml) in access. Go through the steps, make your fields or select top row, choose a name to call your sheet and you have a new mdb file. Go to Data -add x,y data and open your mdb file and you will see your data. If you did the fields right it will pop up in the x (for longitude) and y for Latitude. Select the original projection for your data and apply. Now your data is added as an event. Export this shapefile if you need to manipulate it. ALSO in ACCESS when naming your sheet, there can be no spaces. I always save as the defualt sheet1, and name my mbd file.

That should do it! 
   
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Subject Re: Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGIS9.1 
Author Mary Swihart 
Date Apr 19, 2006 
Message Hi Matthew,

I was able to get the shapefile created without having a projection. I'm going to keep working on that part. Thank you very much and please see the next reply to Ray for how I got the shapefile created.

Mary 
   
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Subject Re: Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGIS9.1 
Author Ray Carnes 
Date Apr 19, 2006 
Message Mary,

Your coordinate data is all in 'text' fields.

ArcGIS will only recognize 'numeric' fields for coordinates.

You should change the format of the DBF columns from text to numeric.

This happens commonly when saving DBF from Excel:
"Excel Fields May Save Incorrectly in dBASE Formats (.*dbf)":
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=214131

Use Excel to re-format the fields as numeric and save another version that ArcGIS can use.

Ray Carnes,
ESRI Technical Marketing. 
   
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Subject Re: Create Shapefile from DBF file in ArcGIS9.1 
Author Mary Swihart 
Date Apr 19, 2006 
Message Hi Ray,

I was having a heck of a time trying to save the data in the correct format using Excel. The reply from Matthew got me thinking that maybe I could use Access to create a table with the correct format. So I imported the dbf into Access and set all the fields as doubles with the proper decimal places. I then used the ArcCatalog to link to the Access database where I was able to see my table. Then I right-clicked on the table and chose to Create Feature Class from XY table. I made a shapefile and added it to the map I needed it for and it worked.

Thank you Ray and Matthew.