[gradsusr] Size of x&y axis values, ENSO Index maskout neutral conditions, HADISST (GNUZip)/ERSST (1600 .nc files)

Corey Gabriel cjgabriel7 at gmail.com
Thu Apr 17 11:38:40 EDT 2014

Dear Grads Community:

 I would greatly appreciate your assistance with the following three
***Controlling size of values displayed on x and y axis
***Maskout (hiding linefill for ENSO neutral values, -0.5<x<0.5)
***Working with HADISST/ERRST (compressed files, fast download/combine or
ASCII to netcdf)

*Question 1:*  All refer to attributes in the figure.  Attached is a time
series of SST anomaly for the Nino3.4 region from 1966-2005 (3 panel, one
from each model).

Unfortunately after putting three images on one figure, the x-axis labels
(2,1.5,1 etc.) and y-axis label (1970, 1975...etc) are too small to read.
I have tried set digsiz (but as expected that was not applicable) and set
strsiz (which also doesn't work since the axis value labels are not

Is there are way to make my x and y axis values bigger?

*Question 2: *Please see time series plot.  As you can see I have filled
values greater than 0 red, and below 0 blue.  I would like to only fill
values above 0.5 in red and values below -0.5 in blue (corresponding to the
phase of the oscillation).  I have tried working with the maskout command,
but I have been unable to make the entire thing work.

Here's a snippet of the code
(plotting the colorfill)
set gxout linefill
Here's a snippet of the code
define nino var1= ...
define var2=...
set t 1274 1751
set lfcols 2 4
d (var1-var2);(var2-var2)
set gxout line
(Now I plot the line portion)

*How can I use the maskout command (or another command) to not fill values
between -0.5 and 0.5?*

*Question 3:* I am attempting to plot observation data as well.  I am
trying to use HADISST or ERSST.v3b.  Unfortunately, with the HADISST data,
the ncfile s are compressed using GNU zip.  I cannot figure out how to move
forward and work with this file (it will not allow me to use ncdump until I
manipulate the files).  Is there a way to handle this type of file?

Alternatively, I am looking at the ERSST files.  (See
ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/cmb/ersst/v3b/netcdf). * Is there a way to
open ftp site in file explorer and then quickly recursively download and
then combine all of the files? *

Alternatively, ERSST data is available in ASCII, and the files span about
10 years each, and could be more easily combined.  However, I don't know
the best way to get GrADS to read that data. * Is there an external utility
that might allow me to convert the ASCII to netcdf? *
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