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Graticules for data frames with clipping shapes

August 09 2007 | 0 comments
Categories: Map Elements

How do you make an "L" shaped data frame that uses a lat/lon grid with text along the edge of the frame?

Mapping Center Answer:

We added this capability (grids and graticules working on non-rectangular data frames) to ArcGIS at version 9.1.

The feature you need to use is called Clip to Shape, and it can be found on the Data Frame properties window on the Data Frame tab. You’ll want to use the option for clipping to the outline of a selected graphic (unless you’ve got a feature class that contains the extent, which will work even better if you’ve got it). So you will need to supply a graphic or a feature in the “L” shape you require. If you use the graphic route, I would recommend storing that graphic in the data frame in a new Annotation Group that only contains that graphic (use the Active Annotation Target from the Draw toolbar).

All that said, I’ve had mixed experiences doing this. Sometimes the labels on the graticule’s don’t draw properly, so I’ve had to convert the graticule to graphics in my layout and hand-edit in order to get the finished product looking proper.

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