About Amerisurv| Contact    
Magazine | Newsletter    
Flickr Photos | Advertise    
HomeNewsNewsletterAmerisurv DirectoryJobsStoreAuthorsHistoryArchivesBlogVideosEvents
 
advertisement


Subscriptions
Software Reviews
Sponsored By

Continuing Series
     RTN
An RTN expert provides everything you need to know about network-corrected real-time GNSS observations.
Click Here to begin the series,
or view the Article PDF's Here
76-PageFlip Compilation
of the entire series
Test Yourself

Got Answers?
Test your knowledge with NCEES-level questions.
  Start HERE
Meet the Authors
Check out our fine lineup of writers. Each an expert in his or her field.
Wow Factor
Sponsored By


Product Reviews
Partner Sites

machinecontrolonline 


lbszone.com

GISuser.com

GeoJobs.biz

GeoLearn

 

Spatial Media LLC properties

Associates

ASPRS

newsnow 

Home arrow Archives   The American Surveyor     

GLO Surveying: Fractional Sections and the Relationship of Chains to Acres Print E-mail
Written by Terry W. McHenry, LS   
Saturday, 12 January 2008

A 171Kb PDF of this article as it appeared in the magazine—complete with the maps necessary to understand what the author is discussing—is available by clicking HERE

One of the interesting aspects of the U.S. Public Land Survey System (USPLSS) is the unique relationship between chains and acres. For those who work with the USPLSS, and the records of same, often the Township Plats contain acreage and fractional part distances that are either difficult to read, partially missing or, in some instances, incorrect.

There are three convenient rules available to apply in working with these matters when one understands the unique relationship between chains and acres. Before discussing these rules it might be helpful to review this relationship through deductive definitions, as follows: 
• 1 Chain = 66 feet, by definition 
• 1 Statute Mile = 5,280 feet, by definition 
• 1 Acre = 43,560 square feet, definition
Thus, 5,280/66 = 80, and 80 chains = 1 Statute Mile

One theoretical Section of Land is one mile on a side, or 80 chains, or 5,280 feet
5,280 X 5,280 = 27,878,400/43,560 = 640 acres
Or, 80 Chains X 80 Chains = 6,400/10 = 640 acres
Thus, Area (in acres) = Width (in chains) X Length (in chains)/ 10

For example, in a theoretical Quarter-Quarter Section, being 20 chains by 20 chains, the product is 400. Divided by 10, the result is 40 acres.

Given the above definitions and relationships, and working with lengths of sides in chains, and areas in acres, one can derive the following three rules:
• By multiplying the average width (in chains) of a fractional lot or aliquot part by the average length (in chains), and dividing by 10, one can derive the area in acres.
• The area of an aliquot part (in acres), minus an adjoining side (in chains), will equal the length of the opposite side (in chains).
• The area of a lot (in acres), added to the area (in acres) of an adjoining lot, divided by 4, will equal the distance (in chains) of the common side. This rule does not work, however, when applied to aliquot parts of differing size (e.g., a 40 ac. and an adjoining 80 ac. part), but is valid where convergence of meridians is involved in fractional lots adjoining the west boundary of a township. And, the area in acres of each lot in the west tier is found by adding the lengths in chains of its north and south boundaries, or for the north tier of lots (except Lot 4 of Section 6), by adding the lengths in chains of the west and east boundaries.

It should be noted that minor differences will sometimes occur using these rules. These differences should be averaged to resolve the discrepancies. On can also check the results from these rules by proportioning, for example, the exterior dimension shown on a tier of fractional lots across the Section's north or west side, to the opposite exterior, using the difference divided by 4, and distributing across to derive the three interior lot dimensions of the tier of four lots. The three rules can also be applied to determine if, and to locate where, an error has occurred on the Township Plat.

Above is a diagram from the Manual of Surveying Instructions 1973, published by the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management, so the reader can test the above rules. The diagram on the left shows a Section 6 breakdown into aliquot part and fractional lots along the north and west side of the township, indicating the areas in acres only. The diagram on the right shows the same Section 6 with corresponding dimensions in chains. By superimposing data from the two diagrams, one can run through the rules to see how they work.

Licensed surveyor Terry McHenry, the editor of the Nevada Traverse (the newsletter of the Nevada Association of Land Surveyors), has been writing a series in the newsletter titled "Key Practice Pointers". Our thanks to Terry for allowing us to reprint his interesting explanation.

A 171Kb PDF of this article as it appeared in the magazine—complete with the maps necessary to understand what the author is discussing—is available by clicking HERE

 
< Prev   Next >

 American Surveyor Recent Articles
Editorial 
Thought Leader: The Incredible 5000 Mile Odyssey of a Survey Marker
One evening in early 2013 with nothing else to do I was browsing the Internet idly searching surveying-related stories. I discovered a TV news story broadcast by KIRO-TV in Seattle, Washington about a charter boat captain, who on March 31, 2012, found an unusual looking plastic stake, with ....
Read the Article
Wendy Lathrop, PS, CFM 
Vantage Point: The Longer (Wetter) View
Every dam, levee, berm, sea wall, or other structure intended to restrain or divert water from its natural course has an inherent risk of failure, whether due to aging, improper construction, inadequate design, or unexpected volumes of water overcoming even the strongest and newest ....
Read the Article
Michael J. Pallamary, PS 
The Curt Brown Chronicles: Challenging Future for the Land Surveyor
The purpose of any registration act is to protect the public from the unqualified. It is certainly not a means of granting to a few an easy means of earning a living to the exclusion of others. As a condition of licensing, the public has a right to expect that those who are licensed are qualified ....
Read the Article
Mary Jo Wagner 
20,000 Feet - A Challenge of Mountainous Proportions
Centuries ago, Alaska Natives first christened America's highest mountain with the indigenous Athabasacan name of Denali, meaning "The Great One." And it is indeed great in both height and stature. From as far back as 1897, the mountain was ....
Read the Article
Evan Page, PS 
Conflict? Surveyors, Not the Supreme Court, Create Confusion
After reading Mike Pallamary's The Supreme Court Introduces Confusion and Conflict in Boundary Law (March 2015 TAS), feedback over the past few months, and Chuck Karayan's counterpoint, U.S. Supreme Court Reduces Confusion and Conflict in Boundary Law (June 2015 TAS), I feel the ....
Read the Article
Larry Trojak 
From Snow's Sting to Solar King
If there is still any doubt in anyone's mind that the renaissance taking place in Buffalo, N.Y. is real, they need look no further than the project unfolding at the site of the former Republic Steel plant in South Buffalo. There, local construction mainstay ....
Read the Article
Eric Stahlke, PS 
The Final Voyage - Part 4
Fellow surveyors Alvin and Peter, our cook Jeff and yours truly were taking the Seloohge to the village of Hughes. After surviving an eventful passage down the Tanana and Yukon Rivers, we now found ourselves on the Koyukuk, going upriver. The rest of our group had split off in Tanana and were ....
Read the Article
Jason E. Foose, PS 
The HP 35s Calculator - A Field Surveyor's Companion: Part 12 - Resection
Most of the programming work we've experienced thus far is no more than reliable math being indisputable as to its singular solution. This multiple point Resection should offer a good solution but not an exact solution in ....
Read the Article
Feedback 
FeedBack
It is unfortunate that Mr. Leininger wrote an entire column that completely misled his readers with a patently false proposition and a flagrant misrepresentation of the 2011 ALTA/ACSM Standards. The very first sentence of his column states "Did you realize that the 2011 ALTA/ ACSM ....
Read the Article
Dave Lindell, PS 
Test Yourself: Stationing a Curve
What are the stations of the PC and the PT if stationing increases left to right? RB=334.260', AC=234.567'. PI STATION=10+00. For a sketch and the the solution to this problem (and much more), please visit our website at: www.amerisurv.com. Good luck! ....
Read the Article
Gary Kent, PS 
Reconnaissance: Professional Surveyors: Where and Who Art Thou?
As I have traveled the country this year, several interrelated themes keep coming up. One is something I have not heard in a while: "Where can I find good people?" Back in ancient times (pre-2007), I heard that question constantly, then for about 7 years, not at all. But now it's back ....
Read the Article

deliciousrssnewsletterlinkedinfacebooktwitter

Amerisurv Exclusive Online-only Article ticker
Featured Amerisurv Events
List Your Event Here
please
contact Amerisurv


Google
 
AMERISURV TOP NEWS

Educator Dave
Gibson Passes

GOT NEWS? Send To
press [at] amerisurv.com
Online Internet Content

Sponsor


News Feeds

 
Subscribe to Amerisurv news & updates via RSS or get our Feedburn
xml feed

Need Help? See this RSS Tutorial

Historic Maps
Careers

post a job
Reach our audience of Professional land surveyors and Geo-Technology professionals with your GeoJobs career ad. Feel free to contact us if you need additional information.

 

Social Bookmarks

Amerisurv on Facebook 

Amerisurv LinkedIn Group 

Amerisurv Flickr Photos 

Amerisurv videos on YouTube 

twitter

 




The American Surveyor © All rights reserved / Privacy Statement
Spatial Media LLC
905 W 7th St #331
Frederick MD 21701
301-620-0784
301-695-1538 - fax