AutoCAD Civil 3D Surveying Quick Tips and Tricks: Apply Description Keys

In today’s AutoCAD Civil 3D Surveying Quick Tips and Tricks I’m going to show you how to apply Description Key codes to a point. This may be necessary in the following situations.

  1. You created a point in your AutoCAD Civil 3D drawing and inadvertently entered an incorrect description. Now you want to correct the description to match your description keys and update the point in your drawing.
  2. The point’s description, while accurate in the past, may require an updated point description. Why you ask? Well let’s say that you created a point at a lot corner, and you called it “LOT”. Then, as part of your professional land surveying practice you go out to the field and set a monument at this corner, perhaps an iron rod. So the description in your AutoCAD Civil 3D drawing now needs to be revised from “LOT” to “IRS”, as an example.

The real issue isn’t really with the description itself, which can be easily edited in your AutoCAD Civil 3D drawing, but with the control and standardization Description Key Sets and coding achieve in layer placement, Point Label Styles and Point Styles – Particularly the placement of the right Marker at the point node. With that said, it is important that the new description is first coded in your Description Key Sets file.

The AutoCAD Civil 3D Surveying Quick Tips and Tricks to Apply Description Keys to a point in AutoCAD Civil 3D 2010:

  1. Correct the point description: First, you need to correct the point description. While it seems obvious, as mentioned above, it’s critical that the new point description is already in your Description Key Sets. If it isn’t, do this first (I guess this would actually be step 0.5). In my example, I’ve created a point and incorrectly entered “EHF” as a description, instead of “DHF”, which is my code for a drill hole found. And yes, the code “DHF” is already setup in my Description Key Sets file, but in haste I hit the “E” button on my computer keyboard instead of a “D”. When will computers learn to do what I want them to do and not what I tell them to do?
    Point with Wrong Description

    Point with Wrong Description

    Point Description Corrected

    Point Description Corrected

  2. Apply Description Keys: You can either select the point as listed under points in the Prospector Tab, or select the point directly in your AutoCAD Civil 3D drawing, and right click. Now select the “Apply Description Keys” option and your Description Key Sets file coding will be applied to the point. In my example, the Styles I had preset for the “DHF” code were applied, not only applying the correct Point Label Style but also applying the proper Point Style, which placed a round filled marker at the point node.

    Description Keys Applied

    Description Keys Applied

This AutoCAD Civil 3D Surveying Quick Tips and Tricks is brought to you by the Professional Land Surveyor Source, showing you how to apply Description Keys to points in your AutoCAD Civil 3D 2010 drawing. I would just like to add, as a warning, that you may experience results other than what I’ve just demonstrated depending on any Point Groups in your drawing that include the new point and if there are “Overrides” applied.

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Eric D. Colburn, PLS, "The Geo-Business Innovator", helps geo-professionals improve through innovative solutions, mastery of marketing and business growth strategies, and coaching/training. Eric is a successful, serial entrepreneur, podcaster, industry writer, product development consultant, and RI licensed professional land surveyor.

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