Rotating Site Plan for North

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Kimberly Rippentrop
Kimberly Rippentrop's picture
Rotating Site Plan for North
SoftPlan Version:
2016 Plus

Maybe I'm doing it wrong but I can never get my lot to rotate perfectly level on the screen. It's always....for this housing development.... .22 degrees off. When setting "Direction of North" the field will only allow for exact inputs without any decimals, therefore my lots can never be rotated (or North) so that everything aligns exactly at a 0 axis to make drawing additional site symbols easier. What am I missing?

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Direction of North

Check out the tutorial Direction of North and see if that gets you what you need.

Bill is the owner and maintainer of SoftPlanTuts.com

Kimberly Rippentrop
Kimberly Rippentrop's picture
I've read over the tutorial

I've read over the tutorial and it seems like I'm doing the right thing...but it's still off. That's why I posted the question because I think I'm missing something. Here's my screen shot, just in case that helps. It's just a slight variance but enough to make my driveway and sidewalks harder to draw. It would be easier if it was straight.

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Site Lines

Looking at your image the top property line is perfectly horizontal as indicated by the Direction of North. However, NONE of the other lines are parallel with this property line. If fact, they are all different. So I would assume that is your problem and that you need to edit each line and change their bearings so that they are parallel with the property line.

 

Kimberly Rippentrop
Kimberly Rippentrop's picture
But the bearings are straight

But the bearings are straight from the plot plan. Aren't they pretty firm? Shouldn't the site plan match the plot plan?

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Ok, I'm confused...

Ok, I guess I'm confused about what exactly it is that you are asking. Can you elaborate on exactly what the problem is that you are having?

Kimberly Rippentrop
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Ok, sorry. It's so hard to

Ok, sorry. It's so hard to describe things in text sometimes. I'm using the bearings from the plot plan/survey I received from the builder. When I enter in the coordinates, the lot is skewed on the screen. When I rotate the North arrow as needed it "almost" lines up but is .22 degrees off on every lot. I think I'm setting my North arrow wrong maybe. The bearing noted on the survey for North is N57'38'49"W. I entered that in for North, drew the lot via the coordinates, then tried to rotate North to get the front of the lot to be parallel with the bottom of the screen. I can never get it exact because I can't rotate it using decimal inputs. I think somewhere along the line I didn't catch a step or am misunderstanding a step. I'm a visual learning so reading the tutorial isn't as affective for me as seeing it.

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Decimal inputs

Ok, I think we are starting to get somewhere, although I am not quite sure where yet. You say that you are trying to rotate using "decimal inputs". So that might be the source of the problem. Surveyor angles are defined by degrees, minutes, and seconds. Not decimal fractions of a degree. Just a quick explanation... a circle is divided into 360 degrees. Each degree is divided into 60 minutes. And each minute is divided into 60 seconds. So let's look at your property line at the top. It is defined as N 15º10'17" E 70.030'. This indicates that if you were facing North you would draw a line of length 70.030 feet from a point and angle it toward the East 15 degrees 10 minutes 17 seconds.

Direction of North is what allows you to rotate your drawing without messing up any of the bearings. For instance if you were to simply rotate the lines that make up the site all of the bearings would change and would no longer be accurate. By changing the Direction of North you are telling SoftPlan that North is not straight up but rather some other angle. Thus you are rotating the entire screen and North actually rotates with everything else and keeps all of the bearings correct.

Site Lines can be defined using the surveyor angle and length. Any of your lines in your drawing that show surveyor coordinates are site lines. The line that does not have the coordinates is not a site line. Rather, it is a shape line. Shape lines cannot be defined using surveyor coordinates. They are defined by length and decimal degrees. So if you wish to draw using surveyor coordinates you must use one of the site line types from within Site Mode. If that is the problem you are running into then simply draw with site lines and you can define the lines with surveyor coordinates to match any other line.

So are we getting close to whatever is giving you problems?

Kimberly Rippentrop
Kimberly Rippentrop's picture
Yes. Closer for sure and

Yes. Closer for sure and thank you SO much for your patience here. The shape line on the drawing I attached is only there because I was looking at the positional direction in degrees. I drew the line from point to point of the survey coordinates property line I had drawn on the lot, then moved it off of the property line for reference. All of the property lines were drawn using the proper Softplan procedure to enter surveyors coordinates. I did this to see what the difference was in my skew. When YOU are drawing a site plan from surveyors coordinates, do you set up your North bearings first before drawing your property lines? That's what I did...the North bearings came directly from the plot plan. Then I entered in the surveyors coordinates. Then rotated my North by adjusting the degrees around to where my front-of-house property line was as close to a 180/0 axis...or level to the screen....as possible. But I can't get it exact.

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Site Plans

This is my procedure:

  1. On the house plan I switch to Site Mode. Then on the Drawing tab I select Building Outline and Generate Building Outline. I save the building outline to a new drawing which I name BO.
  2. I open BO and save as Site, so now I have two drawings BO and Site.
  3. I open Site and delete the building outline so I have a blank page. I'm sure there is a logical reason for doing it this way but I just can't remember what it is at the moment.
  4. On the Site drawing I draw in the lines to create the site.
  5. After the site is complete I decide what I want to be horizontal on the screen and using the methods discussed in the Direction of North tutorial I adjust the Direction of North to properly rotate the site. Typically I want the front of the house to be facing the bottom of the screen so I will rotate the site so that when I merge the Building Outline it will be properly oriented.
  6. I then select a corner of the Building Outline and place a reference point there.
  7. On the Site drawing I place the same reference point at the location where I want the corner of the building to be located. Then merge the Building Outline into the Site Plan.
  8. Dimension and note and done.

Study the Direction of North tutorial again. If you follow the procedure discussed you can rotate your lot to an exact angle with no guess work at all.

 

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Madness to my method

I remember now why I made a copy of the BO plan and named it Site. It is because I want SoftPlan to recognize the final Site plan as a site plan when it automatically places it in the Navigation Pane drawing list. After I merge BO into Site I will delete BO and Site will remain in the Site Plans category.

 

Kimberly Rippentrop
Kimberly Rippentrop's picture
Bill, you'll think I'm an

Bill, you'll think I'm an idiot but I went thru the tutorial step by step with my husband explaining what I was doing and trying to show him that it wasn't working....and it worked. I have NO idea what I was doing wrong but it turns out, I was doing it right all along. Thank you so much. Hopefully I can do it again on the next plan! X *fingers crossed* Thank you again for your patience!!!!

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Fingers crossed

Glad you got it sorted out. smiley

Kimberly Rippentrop
Kimberly Rippentrop's picture
And using a reference point

And using a reference point and merging the outline and site are so much easier than what I was taught. Thanks for those suggestions too. I'd seen your comments on reference point before but I hadn't thought of it in this instance. Much easier! Thank you again!