Stringer Topo: Automating Topographical Surveys

Stringer Topo has been developed to streamline the reduction and presentation of survey observations inside your drawing, whether you’re using AutoCAD, AutoCAD Civil 3D or BricsCAD. Developed by surveyors with over 20 years experience in the industry, Stringer Topo focuses on maximizing your efficiency in adding and editing breaklines, automating linework display, adding and editing point data, creating surfaces and table outputs directly in the drawing.

Stringer Topo delivers fast, easy to use survey tools for creating topographical surveys in your drawing, ready for final documentation and plotting. Associated functionality includes survey quality (comparison) reporting, point export, import/export to numerous formats, traverse editing and drafting for cadastral plans.

  • Extensive COGO Point Functionality
  • For Civil 3D users, Stringer Topo enables advanced editing with dynamic links to other objects as well as the ability to store and report extended property data such as alignment references
  • For AutoCAD and BricsCAD users, harness the power of dynamic blocks and attributed text to fully customise the display of your COGO points, automatically displayed how you like based on your point descriptions
  • Quickly edit point coordinates using Helmert or Affine transformations
  • Reduction of Raw Survey Observation Data
  • Provides you with the ability to convert multiple raw observation files into a single editing interface with graphical feedback as survey edits are applied. Create coordinated points from the survey data and maintain a link between survey and output points.
  • Automated Survey Linework and Breaklines
  • Works directly on COGO points and surfaces in the drawing to automate the breakline creation process and enable immediate updating of surfaces as points are edited
  • Makes it quick and easy to add, edit and remove breaklines and survey linework directly inside the drawing. With a wide collection of point and string editing tools you can quickly correct any pickup errors and get to the finished product.  
  • Survey Tools and Outputs
  • Create highly customisable legend and other reporting tables in your drawing at the click of a button
  • Detailed comparison reporting tools for QA reporting: compare points, surfaces, alignments, lines and polylines
  • Draw cadastral lines, label area polylines and apply traverse adjustments

Stringer Topo provides you with all the tools you need to convert a raw observation files into a dedicated graphical survey editor, through to automated import of co-ordinated points inside your drawing.

Stringer Topo import and reduction tools (Stringer Connect) supports a wide variety of data recorders and all the common data file formats for Australian surveyors including: Leica GSI, Trimble, Topcon and Sokkia outputs.  

By setting a project, multiple survey files can be imported. Stringer Topo maintains the original file and provides users with editing and adjustment capabilities for all survey observations. An audit check is performed as you make changes, so you can immediately identify added, edited and ignored entries via different display.

Within Stringer Connect you can click on any entry to enable editing and zoom to the location in the drawing if points have been created. Any edits you make can be restored back to the original, and any entry can be set to ignore so it doesn’t contribute to the coordinated point output. You can add in a forgotten target height adjustment in just a few button clicks and a matter of seconds.

Because Stringer Connect maintains a link to the points created in the drawing, you can see the effect of changes you make in the survey observations immediately.

There is a dedicated 2D Viewer to see all radiations, control points and observations, updating as you edit the survey entries.

You can underlay an aerial photo, highlight backsight errors, step through the survey pickup progress and turn control point pickups on and off.

Click on a line or point to jump to it in the survey entry list.

Stringer Connect allows you to easily adjust your control points by typing the corrected co-ordinated direct in the cells, importing a file of points to update the co-ordinates or getting the co-ordinates adjusted by reading COGO Point co-ordinates from a drawing.

Control points can be directly managed via Stringer Connect via a dedicated Control Points form. You can import a control points file, export the control points to the drawing and edit control points from the drawing.

Transfer COGO Points directly to the drawing at the click of a button, displayed according to your point descriptions by layer, marker and label. The addition of survey strings, linework and surface output can be completely automated.

If you are working inside Civil 3D, Stringer Topo works directly with and expands on Civil 3D COGO points.  
For AutoCAD and BricsCAD users, Stringer Topo is enhanced with full COGO point tools in the drawing.

COGO Point Editing

In all platforms, Stringer Topo provides support for COGO points, with customisable point presentation based on the point code, comprehensive point editing tools, point labelling control and the ability to group points for output and surface generation.

In AutoCAD and BricsCAD, point display is managed by a block with attributed text, so you are in complete control of the look and feel of each point. For Civil 3D users, we leverage the Civil 3D COGO points for managing the display output.

Point Groups provide categorising of points, allow bulk edit control over display and establish the points used in constructing a surface. The Point Group toolset allows for adjustment of point datum elevations, incrementing of point numbers, editing of display styles, dynamic positioning to other objects and more.

Point Group Editor

Output options include a click export to export points to file, add tables to the drawing and transfer the points (and survey strings) to Google Earth

COGO Points support a number of inbuilt Point Properties (such as point number, elevation, style) and allow for the user to create any Point Property field required. This provides opportunity to include additional attribute information with each COGO point, including text display on the point and inclusion in point tables and file output.

COGO Point Tools for Civil 3D Users

If you are using Civil 3D, Stringer Topo can expand on your current functionality by extending additional Point Properties to Civil 3D COGO Points via User Defined Property tables, so if you want to include alignment information or other attributes in your Civil 3D point output you can.

As well, the dynamic link between Stringer Topo and Civil 3D points expands point editing capabilities:

  • Control Civil 3D point positions by dynamically referencing another object (such as an alignment or surface)
  • Extending Helmert and Affine transformations to Civil 3D points
  • Enabling storage of extended properties onto Civil 3D Points
  • Control Civil 3D point positions by dynamically referencing another object (such as an alignment or surface)
  • Extending Helmert and Affine transformations to Civil 3D points
  • Enabling storage of extended properties onto Civil 3D Points
Point Code Editor

If you are working inside AutoCAD or BricsCAD, then you benefit from all of the above functionality as well as the ability to easily switch on/off the display of particular property text and a dedicated multi point code editor.

You can also grip edit move points in the drawing, as well as use CAD tools to delete.

We have an extensive toolset for creating points:

  • Import point files, including transformation between coordinate systems
  • Create points that adopt the surface elevation
  • Create points by dynamic reference to other objects
  • Create points using polyline geometry
  • Create points on a grid of coordinates
  • Convert text, CAD points and blocks into COGO Points, including multiple options to inherit elevation information from the objects in the drawing

Stringer Topo makes it quick and easy to add, edit and remove breaklines and survey linework (Survey Strings) directly inside the drawing. With a wide collection of point and string editing tools you can quickly correct any pickup errors and get to the finished product.

Stringer Topo allows users to separately control, on a point Code basis, whether to add surface breaklines, 2D polylines or 3D polylines when points are created or edited. You get to pick the layers for your 2D and 3D polyline output to the drawing, and can even add section templates to apply multiple offset survey strings from your point pickup.

Survey Strings can be quickly edited in a dedicated editor window, with all edits updating immediately in the drawing. Edits can be applied to points to improve survey string ouputs, either in the field or in the office. Using the Survey Line Manager window you can easily:

  • Navigate to any string by list or graphical selection
  • See a highlight for self-intersecting strings and see an interactive report of crossing breaklines
  • Change the order of points connecting survey strings, without needing to change point numbers in the drawing
  • Click on any String or Point enables a dedicated ribbon of commands:
    • For Strings
      • Reorder strings to fix out-of-sequence pickup using AI, distance to next or other method
      • Delete line segments based on selection or length
      • Join strings and embed new strings between points, by applying multiple codes to the points
    • For Points
      • Edit point code or point number
      • Match codes by point selection and swap point numbers
      • Append codes to a point by selection of another point
      • Apply Code Linework Parameters to enhance survey string production output: create arcs between points, close off three points to form a rectangle, close strings and attach Templates

As well as editing via the Survey Line Manager, we’ve enabled the most common edits as keyboard shortcuts to apply directly in the drawing.

Achieve survey fixups in minutes using Stringer Topo that would otherwise take hours.

While you are editing your COGO points and Stringer Topo is updating the breaklines and surface, you can review the surface results via the 3D Model Viewer.  The Model Viewer is a separate window showing you a data accurate, fully rendered model of your surveyed surface/s, with click button exaggeration to highlight any issues and visual styles to show or hide the triangulated mesh.

You can also display your surveyed points and strings, and add 3D objects from your point pickup. This gives you another view into the survey to ensure that both the surface and survey output is correct.

Model Viewer with Survey Points
Model Viewer displaying COGO Points and point labels.

Stringer Topo includes a range of tools to output legend tables, apply multi scaled symbols on a single point, undertake survey quality reporting and assist with cadastral survey drafting.

Legend Table

You can generate a Legend Table, as well as a Point and Survey String table, at the click of a button, displaying points and strings used in the drawing.

The table is highly configuration for you to manage the columns of data, headings and presentation output.

Multi Symbols

Set up your tree symbols (or other multi block symbols) to include independent scaling of the trunk and canopy, as well as assignment of a 3D tree block which can be viewed in Model Viewer. The Multi Symbols command allows as many scaled blocks as required to be inserted on a single point pickup.

Conformance Reporting

Auditing tools are included for you to check and confirm the quality of your survey by comparing, analysing and documenting the differences between surfaces, points, alignments, polylines and lines.  You can analyse the results to highlight non-compliance to display in the report.

Comparison report results can be output to multiple formats:

  • As text in the drawing, coloured to match the analysis colors applied
  • To Excel, either as a new Excel file or to selected fields in an existing Excel file
  • To a comma separated file
  • To the drawing as a Table object
Conformance Report

Cadastral Tools

A number of cadastral tools are also included – undertake traverse adjustments from polylines and points, label linework, compare linework and label distance/bearing differences, create linework using links, and create radiation tables.