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I am using ArcGIS for Desktop 10.1 Basic without extensions. How can I convert a metes and bounds description such as below?

For example, 47 degrees, is there a way you can convert the degrees minutes seconds while using CONTROL G (Direction / Length)? I switched in the Editing Options the direction type to Quadrant Bearing and Direction Units to DMS.

SW, SOUTH 0 DEGREES 02' WEST, 110.51 FEET; 
SOUTH 47 DEGREES 52' WEST, 246 FEET; 
SOUTH 74 DEGREES 41' WEST, 167.25 FEET; 
NORTH 75 DEGREES 19' WEST, 274.85 FEET; 
NORTH 41 DEGREES 49' WEST, 339.45 FEET; 
NORTH 89 DEGREES 14' WEST, 42.60 FEET; 
AND EAST 876.75 FEET TO BEGINNING, CONTAINING APPROXIMATELY 4 ACRES,LESS 4 ACRES IN THE NE CORNER OF SAID SW/4
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I don't have ArcMap Basic, but I'm assuming that once you have the units set, you can use the directions here for constructing segments with the direction-distance tool?

  • Both responses are very helpful. – Zoran Jan 14 '14 at 16:48
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Since you've already properly set your editing options units to Quadrant Bearing and DMS, entering the line segments is fairly easy. Click once to start a line, then right-click and choose Direction/Length from the context menu. In the box that pops up, you can enter the calls you have one at a time.

image taken from linked blog

Syntax can vary a bit for the angle, but I use S00-02-00W as an example of your first call. I tend to specify the seconds, even if the description doesn't have them. To speed things up, you can edit your text file to have the right syntax with find and replace, then just copy and paste the values.

Note there are some other handy options in that context menu, including perpendicular and parallel (so you can right click another line, chose one of those, and the segment you're drawing will be constrained to that option relative to the line you clicked). This can save time in entering the angles, for instance if the opposite side of a lot is the same angle in reverse, you just make your segment parallel to that first side and enter length only. Some options are stackable, so you can right-click more than once for the same segment, but you must do them in the right order (length first just goes at the angle of the cursor).

Without access to the COGO tools, you are limited to inputting individual line segments one at a time. The COGO traverse tool would give you access to inputting the entire description at once, as well as a closure check. With only Basic, there's no way to do the closure check or adjustment automatically, though you could use a third party software.

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