I've got a polyline representing a pipeline and have a pig run that has metal loss.

I am going to create a points shapefile in ArcMap 9.3.1 of the metal loss locations along the pipeline but want to do it like a sliding rule every 40 ft., giving me a count of the metal loss points per 40' section.

What would be the best way to perform this task in ArcMap?

  • An elegant way is to make the pipeline measurable and represent the metal loss points as "point events" along the pipeline. (They start out as "mileposts" on the pipeline and get mapped to the corresponding location.)
    – whuber
    Commented Aug 30, 2012 at 20:34
  • Could you define "pig run" please?
    – Aaron
    Commented Aug 30, 2012 at 21:13
  • these are tools pushed thru the pipeline by the product and there are several different types depending on what type of information we are looking for on the in-line inspection. they have lots of magnets and can have combo tools connected together and can measure dents, previous repairs, metal in close prox., anomalies, bends and also include a mapping tool to collect the coordinates of each event. used for interanl and external metal loss for corrosion which can be used for cathodic protection along the line in certain areas showing lots of activity. pig runs are every 5 yrs. hope this helps
    – Rusty
    Commented Aug 31, 2012 at 13:19
  • 1
    @Aaron: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pigging
    – blah238
    Commented Aug 31, 2012 at 17:38
  • As an end product, are you saying you want polyline featureclass where each polyline is 40' long and has an attribute representing the number of metal loss points along the polyline? Commented Sep 5, 2012 at 20:57

3 Answers 3


Take a look at the linked ArcGIS help pages on creating points along a line.

Using the editor toolbar in ArcGIS 10:

Creating New Points Along a Line

Using the "Divide" command in ArcGIS 9.3:

Creating new points or lines at an interval along a line

enter image description here


Assuming that your pipeline feature measured (including the output from the pig run to see what it looks like would be helpful) then I suggest the following.

The ideal way to do this would be to have the pipeline feature measured so you can create line events for the pipe conditions. You can probably put measures on your pipeline from the pig output, if the pipeline is not already measured, since you said you at least get coordinates from the pig output. You could use point events, but line events would probably be more appropriate.

If you are totally new to all this, look up linear referencing.

  • still am working on it. so I can take my pipeline and make a measured route. we use engineering stations but I can use absolute stations or the real distance on the line. each pig event has x,y,z. (points feature) then locate the features along the line, then make a route event layer.that would give me a measured field in the points attibutes from the route..thanks Ruth, I will look up linear ref. to get the process down correctly.
    – Rusty
    Commented Sep 6, 2012 at 19:18

ET_GeoWizards Tool

Points Along Polylines Wizard

The points are located on user specified relative distance from the start point of the polylines.

The user can specify an offset distance and on which side of the polylines the offset points will be created.

If "Both" option is selected for each polyline will be created 2 points (one on the left and one on the right side), otherwise one point per polyline will be created.

enter image description here


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