Create coverages and features from AutoCAD entities using ArcCAD

Last Published: April 25, 2020


This document provides the general steps needed to create and add features to a coverage.


The topic of how to create a theme (a group of common geographic features) is covered extensively in the ArcCAD user Guide sections 2-3. In brief here are the steps:

  1. Define a theme (DEFTHM).
  2. Create features using any AutoCAD command to draw entities.
  3. Add features using ADDFEAT.

    If entities have already drawn the DDFEAT Command can be used to define the theme by color, layer, entity type, line type, thickness, block name, or text style. DDFEAT can be used in place of a property table, because it allows adding AutoCAD property information automatically to the attribute table. AutoCAD properties include Layer, Color, Line type, Elevation, Thickness, Block Name, Insert Angle, Entity name, Handle, Text, Attribute Tags or existing Entity Data.

  4. Create topology. CLEAN the data, but if pointsare being created, use BUILD.

    Numeric themes cannot be used to define a coverage. All coverages in ArcCAD must begin with an alpha character.

  5. Check for node errors and correct them. Use the SAVEFEAT or MODFEAT command to update the changes. Choose BUILD, CLEAN or WAIT when prompted.
  6. Identify and correct label errors. For polygon themes, check for polygon label errors (LABERROR). Before identifing label errors, be sure that all polygons are closed using the NODEERROR command. Topology must be built. If there are errors, create labels for the polygons as needed.
  7. Use MODFEAT to open and update the link between the drawing and the coverage. After all node and label errors are corrected, use BUILD.

    If you have multiple polygons that are missing label points, run the CREATELAB. The best policy is to use the default number scheme that ArcCAD offers. Then use IDEDIT to update the database.

  8. Assign attributes to features. Use ADDITEM, MODREC, MODONE, etc to make
    the changes.

    For more information, please refer to the help or the command reference book that came with ArcCAD.

Article ID:000003605

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