I’m using the apps for a DIY survey of some land I own …, and to position the proposed location of a building on a site plan.

Using the built-in GPS of your iPhone and the iGPSGIS II app, you can get a rough boundary survey done. If you have the deed description of the property and are able to determine the point of beginning, you could enter it into the Deed Calls & Stakeout app. Then you can position the proposed location of the building.

Please keep in mind that the iPhone does not provide good position accuracy. Your DIY survey can serve as a guide for planning but cannot replace a professional survey. For better accuracies, some of our GIS customers use a compatible Bluetooth GPS receiver. Still, the 1-3 m accuracy provided by these consumer-grade GPS receivers is inadequate for professional survey work.

We wish you success in your project. Please let us know if you have any questions about using our apps.

Customer’s reply: “Thanks. I will be using the new Bad Elf Surveyor so accuracy shouldn’t be an issue for my modest aims.”

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Using Stakeout iCMT to stakeout a property

“Although the buying price for the iSXBlue II GNSS is too high for our project, I did find a company in OH, that would rent it too me for a very decent price for a week. . . . . I would like to be able to put in precalculated GPS coordinates (say about 30-50 of them, one every 5-10 meters), on the iPad, and then use the iSXBlue II GNSS and iPad to tell me when I have reached them on the property, so I can physically mark them on the ground. . . Can Stakeout iCMT communicate with the iSXBlue II for some audible or visual help when reaching a preconfigured GPS point?”

If this is the only type of project (i.e. stakeout) that you will be doing using your iPad, you could get the Stakeout iCMT app, which is listed at the Apple App Store for only 9.99.

You will be able to put in pre-calculated GPS coordinates into Stakeout iCMT on the iPad, and then use the iSXBlue II and iPad to help you physically mark them on the ground.

The steps you will be doing are:
1. Use Add Point by Coordinates to enter the latitude-longitude coordinates of the points. The accuracy of these coordinates is important.
2. Create property boundary line by using Add Line Manually and snapping to the points.
3. Use Line Stakeout to go from one node to the next on the property boundary line.

On Page 17 of the Help document you will see that you can set the distance tolerance for the app to notify you when you get within that distance from the target.

How do I walk the boundary of my property?

A Partition & Stakeout user asked how he would use the app to walk the boundary of his property.

To use the Stakeout functionality to help you walk the boundary of a property, you will need to first place the property boundary in the app. One way to do so is to use a GPS device to record the Area Feature representing the property. This can be achieved by using a GPS/GIS data collection app such as iCMTGIS II, iGPSGIS II or the Utility Data Collection app. Another way is to use the digitization function provided by many of our apps, such as the Partition & Stakeout app.

So, in the Partition & Stakeout app, you would first turn GPS ON, turn the Apple Map on in the Show Hybrid mode and zoom to your property. Then you would select the Add Area manually function from the Tools menu and tap along the boundary of the property to create the Area Feature. You can make use of the Node tool to achieve more accurate digitization.

After the Area Feature has been created, you will see it on the screen. As you move, the GPS marker will move on the screen. You could just use the GPS marker as a guide in walking along the property boundary. Or, you could select the Area Feature as the target Feature for the Line Stakeout function, which will show you how far off you are from the Area Feature and how far along you have moved from the starting node of the Area Feature.

Canadian question – iCMT Stakeout

“I am interested in purchasing the iCMT stakeout app for my iphone. The reason for the purchase is I am looking to use it as a quick way to find survey control points/survey markers. It looks like this app allows me to enter geographic coordinates and then do a rough stakeout in the field to the point, or to a line. I am wondering: Am I reading the description correct, does the app allow me to what I’m looking for?
Does it work in Canada? I would hate to purchase it if it doesn’t support Canadian maps.
Can the units be changed to metric?”

Yes, you can use Stakeout iCMT on your iPhone to help you get to the vicinity of a location with geographic coordinates, or do a rough stakeout along a line.

Stakeout iCMT will let you select English or Metric distance/length units. You can also choose to display angles as Azimuth or Bearing.

This app supports the Apple Map, which is available when Wi-Fi is turned on.

If you have Shapefiles or DXF files for the area in which you will be working, you can import those into this app for use as off-line background reference.

Is there a more accurate GPS receiver to use with your apps?

As you know, the built-in GPS of the iPhone and iPad with GPS are not quite accurate. It is adequate for helping you get to the vicinity of a target location or for mapping a large area to obtain the acreage. The next best thing to do is to connect the iPhone or iPad to a compatible external consumer-grade GPS device that provides 1-3 m or 3-5 m accuracy. The Dual XGPS150A, Garmin GLO GPS + GLONASS and Bad Elf Pro belong to this category.

To obtain sub-meter accuracy using your iPad or iPhone with our apps, such as iCMTGIS II, iGPSGIS II, Utility Data Collection, Farming GPS GIS, Forester GPS GIS, Stakeout iCMT, Deed Calls & Stakeout, etc., there is an iSXBlue GNSS supplied by Geneq Inc. that will work with these devices via Bluetooth connection though it is rather expensive.  Please click on this link to see the product description. (2015 Edit: EOS Arrow will also work with iOS devices.)

Which app will help me layout drain tiles based on Shapefiles?

If you just wish to import Shapefiles and locate the points, lines or areas displayed on your iPhone or iPad with GPS, Stakeout iCMT will help you accomplish the task.

Please also read a few relevant previous blog posts:

1/24/13

3/9/13

11/29/13

Have a Happy New Year!

Which app will let me digitize my property then go out and find it?

Stakeout iCMT will display the Apple Map on your iPad (with WiFi and GPS) or your iPhone and let you digitize the boundary of your property and any landmarks on the built-in Apple Map. If you know the Latidude and Longitude of a point, you could also add the point to the map by entering these coordinates. The points, lines and areas you digitize will be stored as Features in the job file.

You can use the Point Stakeout function in this app to help you go to the Point Feautres or to any node on a Line Feature or Area Feature. The app will continually show the current distance between you and the target and display how far in which direction you should go to reach the target to stake it.

The Line Stakeout function in this app will help you move along a Line Feature or an Area Feature. You may store a position at any time as you walk along. Later, you may digitize the line or area boundary you have traversed by snapping to each of these points. The digitized Features can be output to a PDF file.

The Point Stakeout and Line Stakeout functions are also incorporated in the Farming GPS GIS app for the iPad and the Forester GPS GIS app for the iPad. If you have PC-GIS X, then you could send the job file from Farming GPS GIS or Foreser GPS GIS to this desktop software and also bring in a Google Map image as background then print the Feature data along with the background map. Or, you could use PC-GIS X to export the Feature data in .kml format and open the .kml file in Google Earth.