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Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Garry Stewart Nov 22, 2006
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Garry Stewart Nov 22, 2006
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Garry Stewart Nov 24, 2006
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Garry Stewart Nov 27, 2006
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Natasa Biljarska Dec 22, 2006
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Garry Stewart Dec 22, 2006
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Nick Schierloh Feb 20, 2007
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Sean Bohac Feb 20, 2007
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Sean Bohac Feb 21, 2007
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Andrew Etherington Aug 02, 2007
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Kory Fewell Sep 06, 2007
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Bill Clingman Dec 19, 2007
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Barry Guidry Mar 12, 2009
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Barry Guidry Mar 16, 2009
Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it   Karen Hodge Mar 16, 2009
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Subject Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Garry Stewart 
Date Nov 22, 2006 
Message I'm wondering if anyone can provide me with some simple instructions to export a shapefile to DXF-R14 with attribute data. I've tried reading the knowledge base articles and just don't get it. A simple example would have been nice, but no, they've made it really confusing.

For simplicity sake, lets just assume I've got a polygon shapefile with columns A, B, and C. I'd like to export to DXF-R14 but have the columns A, B, C linked somehow so that when the dxf file is loaded into Autocad, then the attributes A, B, C will be also.

What's the process? Here's my guess, but it isn't working ...

1) Run the geoprocessing tool "Create CAD XData", which allows you to pick a list of columns from your shapefile that will carry over into the DXF attributes. The function appears to just add a new column to your dbf file called XDList, and then formats the selected columns from the shapefile in XML syntax with tags, inside the single XDList column.

Here-in lies the first problem ... A, B, and C are text columns amounting to about 30 characters maximum width, but I get a problem saying "Output exceeds field length". I've played around a little with the fields I'm including, and have concluded that the function fails when more than 2 columns from my shapefile are checked for inclusion. Seems like a bug.

2) When I run with a single column with width of about 16 characters, the XDList gets added to my .dbf file. The dbf file grows from around 200Mb to 1.2Gb, due to the extraneous XML tags, etc. I'm horrified at this point.

3) I try to convert the shapefile to DXF using "Export to CAD" and choose "DXF-R14" which runs forever and finally bombs out. My shapefile is pretty big though ... so is there any limit for dxf files?

Any tips or tricks would be appreciated.
Cheers,
Garry. 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Garry Stewart 
Date Nov 22, 2006 
Message No replies yet, but I have discovered something else ... It appears the Convert to CAD operation runs in memory? Is this normal?

I open task manager and can see the memory getting chewed up, yet no output dxf is being written to disk. My input shapefile is 545Mb and the dbf file is 1.2Gb (after adding a single column of 16 characters using XData). Eventually the process crashes. Argh! 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Garry Stewart 
Date Nov 24, 2006 
Message Well the saga continues ...

I've split my shapefile into 4 pieces of about 1 million polygons each. The process now creates a DXF and I can see my attribute column is embedded in the file.

I still wish I could add multiple columns, rather than having to merge them as a concatenated string in one column. Any tips would be appreciated ... I actually may try skipping the Add XData step altogether and just define a string field XDList in my .dbf file, then perhaps build my own XML statement using all my fields and see if that works.

One other problem I've encountered is that my Polygon shapefile seems to change into a Polyline Dxf file?

Any tips would be appreciated. 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Garry Stewart 
Date Nov 27, 2006 
Message Well I suppose I'll just summarize by saying that the XData option allows for storing a limited amount of information in the CAD file. The XData function creates a new column called XDList in your dbf file, which is restricted to 255 characters. Much of the usable space in the column is consumed by XML tags that are used to bundle your data.

I had a co-worker open the resulting DXF files in Microstation, and apparently they did load as Polygons, despite the word Polyline being used throughout the DXF file.

So I guess that's it for now. I'd give myself the points for this one if I could. LOL ;o)

-End of ramble. 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Natasa Biljarska 
Date Dec 22, 2006 
Message Hi,

I'm stuck with the Export to CAD myself.
Did you manage to export finally?

Thanks,

Natasa 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Garry Stewart 
Date Dec 22, 2006 
Message Natasa,

Yes, I was able to get it to work by splitting the file into parts of 1 million polygons each. If you want attributes stored with it, you'll have to restrict yourself to a couple only. The XData option stores attributes in xml format, and the total size of the XDList column that gets added is 255 characters. The tags alone, plus field name and values quickly add up and exceed the maximum which can lead to problems too.

I'd recommend getting your export to work without attributes first. If you get that working then try adding a couple (2 at most) columns as XData.

Also, post some more details about your conversion. Are you doing polyline, polygon, point? What is the size and type of the columns you are trying to associate to the dxf? etc.

Have a merry Christmas. 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Nick Schierloh 
Date Feb 20, 2007 
Message Hi, I think my problem is different but it is related. When I run the (Info) Export to CAD -> dxf the tool apparently runs correctly but there is no output.

I went back to the 8.3 tools (Shapefile to DXF) and exactly the same result. It apparently runs, without error messages, but there is no output.

Any ideas anyone?

Nick 
  ExportToCAD_screenshots.doc (opens in new window)
 
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Sean Bohac 
Date Feb 20, 2007 
Message I am having a sort of similar situation. I am wondering if it is an issue with 9.2. ESRI?
I get the Export to CAD tool to run successfully, after the add CAD fields tool, BUT the output CAD file has no data. I tried with points first, which crashes ArcINFO, but I ignored that because I usually don't try to export points. So, I buffered them to export the polygon to CAD. This process does not crash ArcINFO. But results in CAD tables that have attributes but no records. I used to do this every few weeks with 9.1, but not since the upgrade. Any ideas? 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Sean Bohac 
Date Feb 21, 2007 
Message another edition:
I have discovered that there is something different in the way ArcGIS 9.2 handles CAD data.

In 9.1 I could create polygon data, Use the "Add CAD fields" tool, calculate attributes into the "Layer" Attribute, then use "export to CAD" tool to create DXFs that have attributed layers.

If I run this process now, I get a CAD file that has no records. If I leave out the step where I calculate the attributes into the "Layer" attribute, then I get a CAD file with the proper records but without the attribution. Were previous thread authors trying to calculate attributes into the "Layer" field?

How do I get attribution into my exported CAD files? 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Andrew Etherington 
Date Aug 02, 2007 
Message Have you tried calculating the "LyrOn" field to be 1? This set that layer to be on when the new CAD file is created. I have also been having similar errors with the Export to CAD tool. For some reason it is a big headache in 9.2, but it worked so smooth in 9.1. Can someone please advise. 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Kory Fewell 
Date Sep 06, 2007 
Message I'm having the same problem using 9.2. I export parcel lines out to CAD and the dwg file is 17 kb but has no data in it. I tried the LyrOn as suggested but that didn't work either. 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Bill Clingman 
Date Dec 19, 2007 
Message I am having a similar problem. Exporting line featueres to CAD seems to work fine. Exporting points to CAD results in a dwg in which I can see the points (using Catalog) but the CAD operator to whom I sent the file cannot see the points at all. There's only 330 points, and I'm not even trying to include any CAD attributes (that would be nice, but I've learned to keep my expectations low). 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Barry Guidry 
Date Mar 12, 2009 
Message Apparently points show up so tiny that they are hardly visible. I tried creating points as "Inserts", or AutoCAD blocks, or "cells" in Microstation, following the document located at:

http://webhelp.esri.com/arcgisdesktop/9.2/index.cfm?id=2611&pid=2605&topicname=Exporting_a_feature_class_to_a_symbolized_CAD_drawing_with_block_inserts

I could only get it to symbolize the point locations with the default (circle)...but don't understand how to create a seed file containing the block inserts. 
  Barry Guidry
BGuidry@pantex.com

ArcGIS 9.3.1
ArcView, ArcEditor, ArcInfo
Spatial, 3D, Tracking Analyst's
Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP3
Dell Precision T7400 Workstation
Video card: Nvidia Quadro FX 3700
Memory: 4GB RAM (recognized) 
   
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Barry Guidry 
Date Mar 16, 2009 
Message After working on this further, I found this out:

The help file in the previous reply, I had posted in this thread, works for the generic circle. But, in order to create specific symbols for your point locations to view in CAD you must also reference a seed file in the 'Export to CAD' tool. Additionally, the seed file must contain a cell library. I use Bentley Microstation, rather than AutoCAD, so the attached reference is from Microstation methods. In order to do this, in Microstation, you must create a blank seed file. From the 'Element' menu select 'Cells'.
From the Cell Library dialog box select 'Attach File..." from the 'File' menu and browse to a cell library. A sample is installed with ArcGis in directory C:\Program Files\ArcGIS\Data Interoperability Extension\design\default.cel, which includes some basic symbols.
Make the symbols to utilize active and shared from the Cell Library dialog (see the attached figure). Then save the CAD file.
From within ArcMap, populate your point theme with the 'Add CAD Fields' tool. Then, with the field calculator, populate the 'CADType' field with "Insert". And populate the field 'RefName' with the name of each cell that you want to symbolize each point (from the cell library created in Microstation). These can all be populated with one cell name using the field calculator, or you can specify different cell names to categorize the point theme when exported, as long as each cell name is active in the seed file.
I imagine some other properties in the new CAD fields can be populated as well, to establish colors, and possibly size of cells as well, though I haven't gotten that far yet. Now simply use the 'Export to CAD' tool and make sure to specify the seed file that contains the cell library referenced. 
  Barry Guidry
BGuidry@pantex.com

ArcGIS 9.3.1
ArcView, ArcEditor, ArcInfo
Spatial, 3D, Tracking Analyst's
Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP3
Dell Precision T7400 Workstation
Video card: Nvidia Quadro FX 3700
Memory: 4GB RAM (recognized) 
  Seed_file.GIF (opens in new window)
 
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Subject Re: Export to CAD -> I don't get it 
Author Karen Hodge 
Date Mar 16, 2009 
Message You got it exactly! Congratulations. You're output looks really, really good.

CAD fields are very powerful. You can control many details of your output such as level, color, linestyle, entity type--even output to multiple DGNs in one pass.