Creating Symbols for use in AutoMap:
AutoMap can use your descriptions to place predefined symbols
automatically. (ie. "TREED" may be a deciduous
tree and AutoMap will insert a predefined tree symbol for
you when you use this code and place it on a predefined
layer, color, etc. for you.) Use the "browse" button in
the AutoMap Editor to select a symbol for that code, set
layer, etc. as you wish.)
create a new symbol for use in AutoMap, start a brand-new
drawing file, with an appropriate
name. (You could also open an existing drawing - the drawing
file should only contain the desired symbol, or it would
need to be cleaned up and have everything erased except
the desired symbol.)
1.) Draw your symbol to scale. For example if your manhole
cover is 2.5 feet in diameter, draw it as such or scale
it to be the correct size in real world units.
If you want your symbol to be a certain color, you can assign
it a color when you create it. Or you can determine the
color by putting it on a specific layer and going into the
layer manager and applying a color to that layer. When
the symbol is inserted by AutoMAP, it will come in as you
If you drew the symbol on Layer zero, then the symbol will
change to the color of the layer it is inserted on.
If you have any parts or symbols inside of this symbol,
please ensure they are exploded first.
2.) Once you have finished your drawing of the symbol, it
is IMPORTANT that the insertion point for the symbol is
set to 0,0. If you do not do this symbols may not be placed
at the desired location and may be offset from the actual
point. For example the center of the circle for the manhole
symbol needs to be at 0,0 so that when you take one measurement
at the center of the manhole, AutoMap will insert it correctly.
To ensure the insertion point is 0,0 you can use the move
command to select all the objects that make up your symbol,
pick the base point as the desired insertion point with
your mouse (you can use snaps for more accuracy to get exact
center, etc.) then for Second Point of Displacement, type
"0,0" in the command line and enter. This
moves it to 0,0 so you may need to zoom extents to see it.
3.) You should then run the Purge command to get
rid of any unused layer names, line types, etc. that you
don't need. This keeps the drawing clean and compact so
that any unnecessary layers, etc. do not end up transferring
into the drawing you are inserting this symbol into.
- Steps for purging: Type
or pick the items in BOLD text below (press enter
unreferenced symbols (Blocks, Dimstyles, LAyer, LTypes,
Textstyles or All): all
to delete <* = All>: *
each name? <Y>: n
4.) Next go to the File pull down to -> Save As
(NOT the Save command) and go to the directory or folder
of your choice to save your drawing in there.
Be sure to save it as the default .flx format so
that you get to see a
Exit the drawing without saving, to ensure things are kept
5.) Now you can use the AutoMap editor to select your newly
created block from the list when you hit the Browse button
(and go to the correct folder on your hard drive).
6.) AutoMAP will insert the symbol based upon the drawing
scale, also based upon the symbol Scale you enter in AutoMAP,
to maintain the symbol at a consistent size on paper for
printing purposes. In the case of symbols that must be
full scale (such as a manhole), you must check the
box next to the symbol scale factor that says: "No Scale."
This way they will be the true size as measured and drawn.
Entering in a Symbol Scale means that the symbol inserted
will be a visual representation of what is at that location
and not a true size.
Picking on No Scale means that the symbol inserted will
be a true representation of what is at that location and
will be at the true size of the item measured in the field.
W. Cameron, C.E.T.