PROFESSIONAL LAND SURVEYOR SURVEY-How Do You Rate AutoCAD Civil 3D as a Professional Land Surveying Tool?



In this week’s PROFESSIONAL LAND SURVEYOR SURVEY I’m asking the question How Do You Rate AutoCAD Civil 3D as a Professional Land Surveying Tool?

How Do You Rate AutoCAD Civil 3D as a Professional Land Surveying Tool?

  • Poor (39%, 18 Votes)
  • Adequate (33%, 15 Votes)
  • Very Good (11%, 5 Votes)
  • Terrible (11%, 5 Votes)
  • Excellent (7%, 3 Votes)

Total Voters: 47

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This Professional Land Surveyor Survey has been brought to you by, The Professional Land Surveyor Source.

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.

Posted in Associate Membership, AutoCAD Civil 3D, Business, Land Surveying, Surveying Software, Surveys Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
7 comments on “PROFESSIONAL LAND SURVEYOR SURVEY-How Do You Rate AutoCAD Civil 3D as a Professional Land Surveying Tool?
  1. Autocad 3D is fine as a surveying and mapping tool. Like all prior versions (I have been a user since Ver.8) because the program was designed for other diciplines first and adapted to surveying and engineering, it has an incredable amount of overhead. I remember when the program fit on a single floppy disk! We don’t need a welding library, architectural details, and mechanical piping arrangements to do surveying. That said, it works well. But I would rather not spend $10k for a program and support when I only use $2k of it. Microsurvey and Carlson are looking better all the time.

  2. I find that Civil3d is excellent with feature surveys as my company CADApps Australia as developed a survey package called Stringer which brings in raw Survey data (attributes included) from the field and adds it into Civil3d and then joins all the strings as it was done out in the field. We have a variety of commands for editing your survey work quickly, easily and efficiently.

    We have also developed some labelling tools for Parcels and subdivisions which gives you the ability to label a line segment based on its length and label it with the correct label style (with roundings), giving you less time to spend on cleaning up each parcel. This tool will also add points to the corners of every lot you have designed to export out for set-out out in the field.

    I find Civil3d with these functionalties a great product for surveyors here in Australia as it keeps them all in the working environment which can then easily be handed to the Civil Engineers to proceed with their designs.

  3. Ray Smith says:

    I use Civil3D where I teach at a community college. I find that it is a cumbersome, unfriendly, expensive package that treats surveyors as redheaded stepchildren. For business, I use Microsurvey. It is the best I have found. Friendly, responsive technicians answer support questions. Hours of training movies usually answer most questions. Their training is the best!

    Yes, I am a trainer for them. I have been using it since 2000. I’ve tried others, but Microsurvey is the best by far. The price is nowhere near the price of Civil3d. It is so friendly, I let my students try it. They did not want to go back to the “other” program.

  4. Joe Kubala says:

    It pays to stay State if the Art. Many of the capabilites, coupled with our field equipment, allow us to work with the largest firms, the largest projects, and some great profit margins. We save money and time on data transfer, prepartion and output.

    Yes it is expensive, but so is GPS equipment,robotic total stations, wehicles, and staff. We use the software in so many different ways, it even helps our credibility with sophisticated clients like DOT’s. We even managed to get billable hours training government agencies, and we win many projects by working with the same software as our clients.

    Our small ILC, LSP, and Boundary work has shrunk as a result of the economy, but we have record backlogs with larger clients, bigger projects, and quicker payments.

    Please keep using the lower end products, we will keep buying Civil3d seats and growing.

  5. Fred Weaver says:

    Having used AutoCAD since 1986 I’ve often wondered why the other DWG compatible products have not gained a larger following. You’re driving tacks with a sledge hammer with AutoCAD. MicroSurvey or Carlson make so much more sense, especially considering the cost.

  6. admin says:

    Thank you all for your comments. Here’s a few of my own thoughts:

    I do like AutoCAD Civil 3D and find it to be an adequate tool for my professional land surveying business.

    It is, however, not a great tool. It could use many improvements to its land surveying functionality.

    The improvements to the land surveying portions of Civil 3D would reap huge benefits to Autodesk and other Civil 3D users. Instead of fighting the way we work, embrace our needs; this is because we know what works and what doesn’t. For instance, we know that in not having every point as part of the project, and by not making this an easy thing to do, only leads to potential confusion and mistakes.

    It cost too much, but I do understand the cost of doing business, and I imagine that Autodesk has sunk a lot of money into this program with all of its features.

    Land surveyors need to learn new ways of doing things, too! I applaud Autodesk with its forward thinking and their intent with creating Civil 3D.

    Happy New Year!

  7. There are some great advances regarding contouring that I really like, but I am pretty frustrated with AutoCAD removing some of my favorite commands that I used for boundary determination. I agree with you and the sentiments of some of your responders….it seems that surveyors are not foremost on their minds when the software designers were making the new program. Considering the cost, annual fees and diminishing benefit, I am going to start seriously considering switching platforms.