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 Post subject: How to map underground workings?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2014 12:05 am 
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Joined: Wed Aug 27, 2014 11:58 pm
Posts: 6
Location: BC Canada
Hello all!

I am curious on how I should go about doing so. I think using a measuring wheel will work for distances and such. Would I be best going in with a compass as well so I know my heading within the underground workings. I am looking for a reasonably accurate map but it doesn't need to be dead on. Due to the fact that you are underground and semi busy, do you mapping folks do some sort of a rough sketch, then get home and produce a map in scale etc. Id love to hear what tools you use and how you use them. Thanks!

C,


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 Post subject: Re: How to map underground workings?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2014 7:38 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 4:53 pm
Posts: 270
Location: Ringgold GA
Accurate measurements including distance, height, width and compass heading are all information you need to make an accurate map. Check out some of the info on the net on cave surveying and mapping.

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May all those who have gone before us have a carbide lamp with an eternal flame.


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 Post subject: Re: How to map underground workings?
PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2014 5:29 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 28, 2007 3:48 am
Posts: 70
Location: Stockton, Ca
Hi there,

If you're still thinking about doing some underground mapping here's a few things to consider. You're gonna want to start from a known, fixed point outside the portal and methodically work you're way inside. You're main line to work off of is what surveyors call a traverse, basically. You can make measurements of the headings, crosscuts, stopes, etc using this line as a starting point. Using a compass underground can be misleading as it can be affected by mineral formations. You are gonna want to have a good known azimuth when you make your first section measurement from outside to in. From there you can use some basic math to calculate your heading. It never hurts to know your elevation as well, so you can measure your depth too.
The key is to take your time and take copious notes. It sounds like you're gonna use pretty basic methods so also make lots of drawings and add your measurements to them for your reference. Take a good tape measure too. Sounds like a fun project. I know this post is late but it's mine exploring season and I've been inactive for a while.

I hope this helps.

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Erik Novoa
Miner/ Railroader


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 Post subject: Re: How to map underground workings?
PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2014 9:35 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2014 1:17 pm
Posts: 70
Location: Central Wisconsin
Molly is right, a compass can be worse than useless underground. I've been caving at Ledgeview Nature Center, and even though they are limestone caves, my compass on my watch was 2-15 degrees off at times. In an iron mine tour, it was a complete crapshoot. GPS won't work for obvious reasons, so I suggest marking the way you came, as well as doing what she said.


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