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This document covers the process of digitising a geological map in ArcGIS desktop 10:

Here are the files that I use in the tutorial:

Other resources are available here:

Key parts of digitising not covered in these videos are covered on these pages:

Video tutorials (screencasts) – digitising a geological map in ArcGIS Desktop

The following screencasts document the process:

Playlist on Youtube

This document covers some of the process of digitising a hand drawn geological map using Inkscape:

Template and other resources

  • OUGeology1 
    font with geological symbols that can be installed on your computer and used in ArcGIS Desktop

Geological Patterns

To use the pattern/swatches in illustrator:

  1. download and extract patterns (zip file)
  2. open you document
  3. load the swatches: Window -> Swatch libraries -> Other Libraries ...
  4. browse the file with the swatches

Note: all resources should be printed at 100% (not fit to printable area) on A4 or A3 paper. All the stereonets have been generated using output from OSXstereonet.

a4_grid.pdf A4 grid paper with 1mm, 1cm and 10cm subdivisions

A3 grid paper with 1mm, 1cm and 10cm subdivisions

Otago-Logging-Sheet-v03.pdf Otago logging sheet (by Dave Prior)
EA_stereonet.pdf Equal area stereonet with 2° and 10° subdivisions
EA_stereonet_labelled.pdf Equal area stereonet with 2° and 10° subdivisions and degrees labelled across the horizontal
EA_stereonet_overlay.pdf Overlay for equal area stereonets. Has labels around the perimeter. Should be printed on A4 tracing paper.
polar_net.pdf Polar stereonet with 2° and 10° subdivisions
EA_stereonet_labelled_2x_10cm(notebook).pdf Notebook sized stereonet x2. Should be printed on card (200gsm or more)
EA_stereonet_labelled_3x_10cm(notebook)_overlay.pdf 3x overlay of notebook sized stereonet. Should be printed on A4 tracing paper.
poles-to-plane-and-lineation-guide-tiled.pdf A guide used to quickly plot lineation and poles to plane measurements. Should be printed on card (200gsm or more). Designed by Dave Craw.
ternary_diagram.pdf A ternary diagram with 1% and 10% intervals.
Größe Breite x Höhe (mm) Breite x Höhe (inch)
A0 841 x 1189 mm 33.1 x 46.8 in
A1 594 x 841 mm 23.4 x 33.1 in
A2 420 x 594 mm 16.5 x 23.4 in
A3 297 x 420 mm 11.7 x 16.5 in
A4 210 x 297 mm 8.3 x 11.7 in
A5 148 x 210 mm 5.8 x 8.3 in
A6 105 x 148 mm 4.1 x 5.8 in
A7 74 x 105 mm 2.9 x 4.1 in
A8 52 x 74 mm 2.0 x 2.9 in
A9 37 x 52 mm 1.5 x 2.0 in
A10 26 x 37 mm 1.0 x 1.5 in

Download USGS_AI_Pack.zip

Instructions for using USGS AI Pack

This pack has been derived from:

There are a couple of different ways to use this pack:

Approach 1: Installing the swatches and using the reference.

  1. Open a new document in illustrator and bring up the swatches panel  (Window>Swatches).
  2. Click on the small icon in the bottom left to choose swatches and go to Other Library.

    This should put you in the folder that contains a folder of swatches (or the swatches folder itself)
  3. Copy and Paste the “USGS_Swatches” folder you downloaded to the Swatches folder.
  4. Now when you click on the small icon in the bottom left of the Swatches Panel you will see USGS_Swatches in the list.
  5. Open up one of the Swatch sets. If you hover over the individual Swatches you will notice a number is displayed.
  6. Refer to the USGS_Swatches_reference.pdf to see which unit this refers to, or simply fill an object on the screen to view it. If you are using AllUSGS swatch refer to FGDCgeostdTM11A2_PattCh_poster.pdf

Approach 2: Opening the USGS pattern pages directly in illustrator

  1. In the folder called “USGS_pattern_pages” are four ai files. Open any one of these in illustrator.
  2. Select the pattern you want to use. Copy and paste this into your document (put it on the side of the page.)
  3. Use the eyedropper tool to apply this pattern to a shape. I.e select the shape, select the eyedropper then select the pattern.