Land Surveyor Community Forum

This is my first post here. I am doing a constriction project and decided to get a total station after some frustration locating things mechanically. I bought a Nikon 5M which has not arrived yet.

I am working on a 19 acre plot of land. The property just had a professional survey and I have some markers to go off of. However there are no markers where I need them on the property lines and I need to locate building site stuff. I prefer to do it more accurately than a tape measure and it is through some trees etc.

The land is not cleared and there are not a lot of straight shots to make. The surveyor did put a couple stakes up the property line, but not really deep enough in for me to use. I may clear some stuff to get shots if needed, but the goal is to only clear where needed to build.

So, what I need to do is properly locate the building site from his markers, layout the driveway and stuff, mark for the basement dig, and maybe use it to layout the home and some out buildings. Also, I would like to shoot lines and maybe do some clearing for the fence lines.

With all that said, am I going to be able to do this with just the total station, or am I going to need a data collector and some software also?

Please keep in mind I am not a licensed surveyor and only plan to use this for occasional purposes like listed above.

I know I have a lot to learn, but if I need a data collector, then I want to start hunting for something used that might work and maybe something with some software.

Please ask anything that you need to know to make better suggestions. I have not used a total station before, so I am starting from scratch here.

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  • Hi John, Great to here, now that you mention this, I also used port 2 from the instruction on the Cogo LT but it was on the HP 49+ emulator and it worked but after I read more on this I changed it back to port 0.

    I had the same memory problem on the smallest of the Calculators the HP 48gII , it uses a program for it, as you may have seen. I could never get it to work with it's program it is for a smaller screen. These Emulator calculators work great and Jacob's programs are very good. These are good to have on your computer or on a laptop, they could be used in the field. They are very help to students, But I have got just a small response or I think, may be more are using them than I know. This site and many others have emulators.

    If you like to try the HP 35s RPN ( Reverse Polish Notation ) I use this one also so I know it is good.

    This is the link, this calculator only cost 60 dollars. The HP 32s and 33s are discontinued and now they are selling for 300 to 600 dollars used. This is a great calculator but look at the emulator. I have another COGO program for PC, but it is to large to send here. Thanks for the Pro Instruction install you are doing Great. Here is the link for the HP35s

    HP 35s Emulator :
  • Hi John,

    Thought you might like these also they are cogo  PC programs. This one is from Barry Graham,

    This is his latest version it is very good he is a member of LSU. He gives two version  one for the US uses Bearings. Free COGO Quadrant.

     I tried to attach it but it was to big even after i compress it.

     but the file is to big and the arthur removed it from Free downloads

    but I can do with my copy what every i like, except sell it.  I would have to Email it to you.

     Look at this for now.

    Coordinate geometry graphical solutions to surveying and civil engineering computations.
    • I will check that out.

      I finally got the Pro version to load on the emulator.

      These instructions from SGS worked for me following up with the normal install instructions from them:

      "Loading in Port 0 is not an option because it will require more memory than is available for user objects, which is why the libraries need to be attached to Port 2.  The "object in use" error suggests the library is already stored there, or another library with the same ID already exists.

      1. Open File Manager (Left Shift, the APPS key)
      2. Select 0:IRAM by scrolling up
      3: Click ENTER key to browse the contents of Port 0
      4: Click NXT key to change the menu, the second page of the menu should have PURGE on F1
      5. PURGE each object from Port 0
      6. Click the Left cursor key (silver dome) to return to the File Manager
      7. Select 1:ERAM and repeat procedure to PURGE everything, if anything is stored there
      8. Click the Left cursor key (silver dome) to return to the File Manager
      9. Select 2:FLASH and repeat the procedure to PURGE everything
      10. Reboot the calculator by mouse-click and hold the ON key, then on your keyboard press the C key, then release both

      Next start from the top with the instruction I sent, you should be able to complete the procedure."

      Coordinate geometry graphical solutions to surveying and civil engineering computations.
  • Hi John, I am a old calculator surveyor and will not go to the field without one. Same as the Data Collector the only reason I would not is that I do not have it or the batteries Die.  But I have many calculators,which some of them are the HP 48 GX but I have survey cards for them. TDS( Tripod Data System) and SMI ( Survey Module INC. ) These are no longer use because HP quit making the 48 GX after 10 years of running.Before this Sokkia and a few other only made data collectors. TDS and SMI were some of the most popular Data collectors used by surveyors. A 48 GX can now run you over 600 dollars alone plus the program cards can cost up to 500 each ,just go look on Ebay or Amazon. You can get anew 50 G @ Amazon with the 2 GB SD card around 70 dollars If you want to use a calculator in the field with the Data collector.

    I am a big fan of HP RPN calculators But I have many years of experience  with them. The HP 50 G uses RPL  program language,this is different than RPN. HP RPN surveyor calculator of choice is the HP 35s. It cost 60 Dollars and it is the Best RPN made to day by them. HP newest calculator is the HP Prime, this is the most advanced calculator in the world other than the HP 50 G. The HP 35 is much simpler because it is used by students on different test which one is surveying and it is approved  for this.

    But do not take nothing from it this is still a very advance calculator. Now back to the Prime, this is a touch screen with Apps and uses HP PPL programming similar to Java, C++ but more like Pascal. It was called HP Basic at one time but this is not the language Basic. You can read about this calculator in the link I gave you for the instructions for the 50 G and my Discussion Into the Time Machine. You  said you need to erase or clear some of the files in the 50 G. If you need to clear  and start over you can try Reset calculator, but if not press tool, this sets soft menu back up and exit any programs,next press left shift (white) then Files, this will open Directories you will see home above that your ports 0,1,2 then cue up highlight 0 press  ok   if there is files there then press NXT and Purge each one on all you ports. Clear 0 (zero) port may clear all of them, if not you will have to do 1 and 2 also. Resetting the calculator  may clear all memory. Either way I can help you fix it were it will work. If the Real calculator comes with a HP connect kit you can download this free program in it or the SD card. Wish you luck.Reset Calculator is in Edit the same place as load object.

    • Good Info.

      I think I got the COGO+Lt working.

      The only thing I don't get are what the two other menus in the library do (L932 & L931).

      If I go into those, there is only one option COGO_ which seems to just take you back to the COGO+ menu.

      The COGO Pro has L930 through L936. I cannot get all those loaded into a blank calculator without it giving an out of memory error.

      I ran into a couple snags getting this going. First it defaults to Algebraic mode. I had to change it to RPN. Then the directions were saying to press 2 then store instead of 0(for emulator).

      I did figure out how to purge the libraries. Again this was just a directions issue. They said to put in an extra :  that is not needed before the purge command.

      •  Hi John,

        I have not tried COGO Pro in the Emulator is this just a trial . I know the Pro will down load in the Real calculator because it is also using a 2 GB SD card for memory But if you buy a Real calculator make sure you get the HP connect kit with software and a USB cable with it . Most come with this or you can contact Hp for one. At Christmas Amazon had this calculator with 2 GB SD card for 67 dollars, this is a 150 dollar Calculator. So that was a great deal, I seen some recently  for 70 +/- that is still a bargain.

        A HP 35 s cost 60 dollars if you decide you just like to have a calculator, they are also simple to enter programs and there are places that do that but charge, but i can help  you  learn how to do this you seem to catch on quick.

  • Hi John,

    I remember William Robinson had some video's on Android programs you might want to look into this since you asked. I will give you this link. There are some calculators Emulators for it also.

    • I ended up getting a Nomad with some software on it for a good price. I can start reading through the software manuals while I wait for it to arrive.

      Is there still much use for the HP calculator with a a proper data collector and survey software package?

      • Id just keep it handy for a backup. HP48?

  • Hi John, 

    I can help you with the Emulator. First did you get the Emulator from Bill Graves @  .

    If not Do this download but delete the first one. This has 5 calculators you can use, the 50 G only if you like.The other 4 will still be on your computer but only open one emulator at a time the 50 G,49+ and 49 will run this program cogo lt. They all load the same way ,from your three files 930,931,932 .You only have to download it one time you are copying it to each calculator ,only if you like to use them. you can just used the 50 G.

    After you do this you can download the software file if you already have the correct one it will work.  After you extract it you will see three files but first read my instruction at this Discussion it is in details on how to do all of this. I give these instruction in other Discussions also. So go here and read how to do this.

    Can I help you survey,I can,I am Hp Prime

    If you have any problems I can help you. here is where to look.

    First page, 5 reply dated July 20,2016@4:01AM ,this is for the Emulator.


    2nd Page, 5 reply dated July 23,2016 @ 9:47 PM ,this is for installing COGO LT .

    second paragraph. 

    Debug4x Home Page
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