I spent a fair amount of my time back in October chopping up ESRI shapefiles and converting them to CAD files. Using the ArcGIS export to CAD feature I was on my way to finishing this task when I noticed upon testing that the annotations were nowhere to be found. I looked for a way to export my text labels but nothing happened. I also did not like the fact that I could not control the layer names and such so I went looking for another solution.
I remembered years ago using a utility called CAD2Shape from a company called Guthrie CAD/GIS that essentially took a bunch of CAD files and converted them to shapefiles including the annotations as well as added them to separate layers very easily and quickly. I looked them up and saw that they had a utility called ArcV2CAD.
Arcv2CAD Converts ArcView/ESRI shapefiles to AutoCAD® DXF and DWG formats. It allows shapefiles to be read by CAD software, such as AutoCAD, Bricscad, MicroStation, Visio,and in my case TurboCAD.
The first thing I noticed was that the interface was quite simple and intuitive.
(more screenshots here)
I did not need any instructions to get this running. I found my shapefiles, click on it specified the colors and text label colors, size, style, layer and click save as.
Large Files? get a license
It was easy as pie to use and I was on a roll until I tried to convert a shapefile over 50K and was greeted with a message that I needed a license to process a file over 50K. I ended up asking the Boss to fork over the “company card” and paid the $189 so I could finish the tasks at hand. It took 1-5 seconds to process the same files that ArcGIS was taking minutes to process with no control over colors and no text label conversion.
At the end of the week I was playing around with importing images in TurboCAD another feat of wonder…