Create Pie maps in Surfer

You can now display your numeric attributed data using Pie maps. Use the Base Symbology tool to choose which attributes from your vector file you're interested in, then represent the proportions of these components with colored pie slices. Size the pies proportionally or use a fixed size, customize colors, labels, position and formatting. This is a great way to display demographics data from the US Census, sample concentrations from your recent field season, or even geographically-varying survey responses.

Pie Map in Surfer


To create a Pie Map:

  1. Click Home | New Map | Base | Base if you have vector data (such as SHP or DXF). Or click Home | New Map | Base | Base from Data if your data is in a text file (such as XLSX, CSV, or DAT). 
  2. In the Import dialog, select your file that contains attributes, and click Open.
  3. In the Contents window, click the Base(vector) layer to select it.
  4. In the Contents window, click the General tab.
  5. Click the Edit Symbology button.
  6. In the Symbology dialog, select the Pie Chart symbology
  7. In the righthand Attributes section:
    1. Click the green plus next to the attributes you wish to have represented by pie slices. You will need to select at least two attributes.
    2. Click in the color window next to that attribute to choose a new color or fill for that attribute's pie slice. The pie border line properties can also be selected here.
    3. Click the red X next to selected attributes to remove that data from the pie map.
  8. In the lefthand Properties section:
    1. In the General section, edit the Start angle and Offset position of the pie
    2. In the Pie Size section, choose Fixed or Proportional sizing
    3. In the Pie Labels section, set your desired label format preference
    4. In the Leader Lines section, set the formatting properties for leader lines.
  9. Click OK or Apply to draw the pie map,


Updated November 12, 2021



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  • Hi. great feature I've been looking at for years. 

    Minimal pie size is 0.254cm which can be far too big for some of my figures. It would be nice to be able to go smaller to avoid having to resize/rescale everything on existing figures.

    Also, the attributes only appear in the Pie Charts Symbology window if the rows contain (except first) contain numeric figures. If one cell contains text (eg "<0.5" for a concentration) then you don't see the column as an attribute. You need to change it to a number.

    Also, when you select Percentage in the Pie Labels, it would be nice if it would add the "%" symbol at the end automatically (and a reasonable number of digits: none or 1 instead of the 14 significant by default...). We need to add the symbol manually in the Label format window as a suffix.

  • Hi Thomas! 

    Thanks for posting your comment! I have added a vote to our suggestion file, upon your behalf, for future versions of Surfer to have a smaller default pie symbol on the pie chart. I have also added a vote for support of alphanumeric attributes for the pie chart. 

    Regarding your comment about adding a % sign to the labels, this can be done by expanding the Label format section in the Symbology dialog, and adding a % as the Suffix: 

    Please let me know if I can be of any further assistance!

    Drew Dudley
    Account Manager / Technical Support



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