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Overset text when exporting to AI from ArcMap 10.1

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Lori Martin

Lori Martin


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After upgrading to ArcGIS 10.1, I am getting LOTS of overset text in my exported .ai (CS5) (with the little red crosses and letters missing from my labels).


This wasn't a problem in ArcGIS 9.3. There may have been a couple of instances and they could be fixed by extending the line. In 10.1 there are way too many errors and in many cases the missing letters are just that... missing.


I have been able to either export or print to a pdf from ArcMap and open the pdf in Illustrator and save as an .ai file, but I am concerned there are other issues I am not readily seeing as this is a large complex map.


Any insight would help. I'm kind of at the pulling my hair out stage due to an approaching timeline crunch.






Lori Anne Martin,
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That just sounds as a font issue.  The font size may be set to larger point size in your properties in ArcMap when you export, or Illustrator may be substituting the font.



"Ah, to see the world with the eyes of the gods is geography--to know cities and tribes, mountains and rivers, earth and sea, this is our gift."
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Matthew Hampton

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Those little (angry) red crosses are a bane to the profession when exporting from ArcMap to Illustrator, as is the breaking of labels into individual text-baselines when labeling on a curved path.  


Most fixes require manual labor and take a lot of time, but you can try exporting slightly larger text sizes (like 12.5 pt instead of 12 pt).  In Illustrator, after converting out of Legacy text and nudging all the labels too and fro so the size of the type is recognized (it comes over at 1pt and all the text is greeked out) change the typefaces back to their original size (12 pt in this example). 


There will be a little trial and error and you'll want to experiment on a small extent for fast iteration, but you should be able to find an optimal size difference that will simultaneously make hidden letters visible and not mess-up the kerning (too much).  It's not a perfect solution, but it might get the job done.  I have also gotten different results from using the Standard Label engine instead of Maplex as well as annotation instead of labels on the ArcMap side.


I think the "export labels-from-Arc-to-Illustrator issue" is a very large problem and engineers from both Adobe and ESRI are pointing at each other.  I hope somebody else has a good fix.

co-cartographic creator of boringmaps.com




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You could try adding an underscore to the end of your words/labels in the label expression. This will create slightly longer baseline paths in the AI export. Then in Illustrator, replace the underscores with nothing.

Jesse Wickizer

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