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Stroke symbol layers

Types of strokes

Stroke symbol layers are components of symbols that draw lines and outlines. They are most often used in line symbols or in polygon symbols as outlines. They can be one of the following three types:

Solid stroke

Line features draw with a solid stroke symbol.

Draws linear geometry with a single solid color and width

Picture stroke

Line features draw with a picture stroke symbol.

Draws linear geometry with an image file

Gradient stroke

Line features draw with a gradient stroke symbol.

Draws linear geometry with a linear color gradient

Stroke symbol layers can also be used in mesh symbols to draw the edges of multipatch features and 3D object scene layers. In this context, stroke symbol layers can only be of Solid stroke type, and you cannot set any property other than color.

Use the drop-down menu within each layer as they are listed in the Format Symbol mode of the Symbology pane, on the Properties tab, on the Layers tab Layers to set the layer type.

Solid stroke symbol layers

Solid stroke symbols contain two main properties: Color, which can be partially transparent, and Width.

Learn about color

Picture stroke symbol layers

Picture stroke symbol layers use an image file to draw linear geometry. In the Format Symbol mode of the Symbology pane, on the Properties tab, on the Layers tab Layers, expand the Appearance group. Click Picture to browse to an image file. Valid file formats are *.bmp, *.jpg, *.png, or *.gif. Adjust the Quality, Tint, and Size properties as necessary.

Tip:

Set the Tint property to white, which is the default setting, to draw the image in its native colors. Setting this property to no color causes no image to be drawn at all.

Click Reset size to revert the image to its native size.

Learn about units and symbol size

Gradient stroke symbol layers

Gradient stroke symbol layers use a color gradient to draw line geometry. The direction of the gradient follows the direction of the line.

In the Format Symbol mode of the Symbology pane, on the Properties tab, on the Layers tab Layers, expand the Appearance group. Click the Color Scheme drop-down menu to choose a color scheme, or set custom colors using the individual drop-down menus. Click the Flip color scheme button Flip color scheme to reverse it, and adjust the Width as necessary.

Stroke symbol layer properties

Both types of stroke symbols have additional properties that define the appearance of the symbol in which they are contained.

Offset strokes

The black stroke uses an offset effect.
The black stroke is offset relative to the yellow stroke symbol layer, which lies directly on the line geometry.

The graphical stroke can be drawn perpendicularly offset relative to the geometry. Define the offset distance from the Offset property in the Offset effect group. Choose a Join styleBevel, Round, or Miter—to control how the joins are handled at the offsets.

Offsets in a stroke symbol layer are symbol effects with a default definition of no offset. This is a convenience to easily adjust a stroke offset without having to add an effect. This effect can be managed in the same way as any symbol effect in a symbol layer. When symbols with offset stroke layers draw, the offsetting is processed before any dashes present on the stroke.

Learn about symbol effects

Dashed strokes

The black stroke uses a dash effect.
The black stroke is dashed; the yellow stroke below it is not.

As with stroke offsets, stroke dashing is also handled with an available Dash effect with a default definition of no dash (a solid, uninterrupted stroke.) This effect is added as a convenience to stroke symbol layers and can be managed in the same way as any other symbol effect.

Choose a dash from the Dash type pull-down gallery, and adjust the Dash template values as necessary. Each dash value in the template represents the next segment of the dash; for example, a dash template of '7 3' would return a 7 point stroke followed by a 3 point gap, followed by another 7 point stroke and 3 point gap, and so on.

Caps and joins on strokes

The properties in the Caps & Join group define how the stroke should draw at the ends of strokes (caps) and at junctures (joins).

Caps

Butt—Line symbols stop squarely and exactly at the endpoints

The black stroke ends with butted caps.

Round—Semicircles extend past the endpoints

The black stroke ends with round caps.

Square—Line symbols extend half the symbol's width past the endpoints

The black stroke ends with square caps.

Joins

Bevel—Corners are clipped at junctures, especially at sharp angles

Vertices of the black stroke are beveled.

Round—Semicircles are drawn at endpoints

Vertices of the black stroke are rounded.

Miter—Symbol edges are extended, creating pointed angles

Angles of the black stroke are emphasized.

Patterns on strokes

For gradient strokes only, the Pattern type can be adjusted to provide a discrete or continuous stroke style.

Continuous—The gradient follows a constant change in color

The symbol stroke gradient follows a continuous pattern.

Discrete—The gradient is a specified number of intervals

The symbol stroke gradient follows a discrete pattern.

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