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Aging & Worn
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm a big "GPS" fan. I've had one for YEARS in my four-wheeled vehicles (trucks, cars).

I've owned two units over the last 20 years in succession. Both of them were Magellan units. Not a bad unit.............for the most part. One started to give me trouble with its "touch screen," and the other (over the last year or so) has been confused, lost, and slow to recover.

So while in Florida, on this trip of ours, I began researching. I had a keen interest in TomTom and Garmin, having not owned either one, and wanting to see if the interfacing was more user-friendly.

It wasn't until a couple of days ago that I narrowed down the field to "Garmin," eliminating the TomTom, because the TomTom seemed to be a bit more "involved." It wasn't as clean a platform, and involved a few more (in my opinion) keystrokes than should be required, to use.

Then over the last day or so, I had a list of Garmin units I was interested in, and spent a good deal of time watching videos on YouTube and reading Research articles and so forth.

It came down to, which one had the best options. They all had free software updates for life, and some had "free" traffic report" updates for life (not all); some where larger displays (my Magellan was a 3 inch screen) that were typically 5 to 7 inches (measured diagonally).

I settled on one particular "Nuvi" unit (65) with a five inch screen, (much more readable, both in layout and size) and a currently available "Sale" price of $139.00 (which is very reasonable really).

I noticed during my research of all this (and here's the "motorcycle" tie in), that they (Garmin, and presumably the other manufacturers out there) have a version for motorcycle as well.................

You can read about them (if you are not already up to speed on this topic) here: http://sites.garmin.com/en-US/zumo/#compare

After a day of using the Garmin (we went out for ice cream sundaes last night, and I tried it out) I can say that I got comments like, "the display is sure more logical in layout" and "it sure is easy to read," and the like. I agree with both assessments (from the wife), and love the five inch screen and the flexibility of the mount that allows for a range of adjustment for viewing that is wonderful if the wife wants exclusive "Navigator" viewing.

One feature that (and there are more than one) I particularly liked with the Garmin (and do get the micro SD Card, for additional storage please. A meager sixteen bucks will get you like three gigs of extra storage space, and it even recommends doing so, on the box) was the default "remembering" of where I've been, so that when my current trip is over, I can click on a list of places it remembers traveling to, and simply tell it to "go back there" again, rather than re-programming it or creating multiple lists of places I like to go, before I go there. You can still tell it where "home" is, and all that, but I like that it remembers on its own, in case "I" forget to program some location IN.

Needless to say, GPS units have come a long way since I had bought my last Magellan, and after about a half hour of set up, (downloading the newest software, and a few creative features like voice options and visual graphics options) it was not only "ready to go," but was also a real joy to use!!

Garmin's interface (Garmin Express) is free on their website, for the software updates and so forth, and they made it really simple to work thru. The Registration process was easy and clean, and they have made sure that the use of the unit is not only functional and valuable in itself, but "fun" as well.

-Soupy
 

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Yep Soupy I'm a huge GPS fan too, and have grudgingly learned to 'love' Garmin over the years too. I was originally a Lowrance fan, but they kinda died out.. & I loved rooting for the underdog ;)

Once you get comfortable with your existing Garmin software, step up & get involved with "Basecamp" link your GPS to your PC & plan trips!

http://www.garmin.com/en-CA/shop/downloads/basecamp

One word of caution the Nuvi's aren't outdoor rated, right? Sure they can handle some sun, but will die if splashed or if they get overly dusty. I know some peeps claim to just stick a ziplock bag over it on rainy days, but,. well good luck with that.

The Nuvis are indeed cheap though which makes them tempting. On the opposite end of the $$ food chain are the motorcycle-specific Zumo's. They seem pretty great, but DAM pricy!! And, they are basically useless for anything else other than motorcycle navigation.. So I went another route:

Have you looked at the Garmin Montana's?

They're cheaper than the Zumos but pricier than most Nuvi's.. However, they are "full featured" GPSr's, come with dedicated "powered" motorcycle handlebar mount options, and will route your trip via a nice sized screen. I bought the 600 it has a 4" (diagonal) screen.
 

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Aging & Worn
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Discussion Starter #4
The wife and I are on vacation in my truck, so the Garmin was chosen for that vehicle. "Weather" vulnerability is therefore not an issue for me.

The link in my posting was for a Zuma for motorcycle applications.

I note that the camera (BC30) is approx.$170.00 and so I have not opted for THAT aspect of the Garmin.

As for Basecamp applications...........I use a compass!

-Soupy
 

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Wow, this gives me an idea for when I get my bike running again. But why not just a mount for your smart phone? Probably can't see it in the sun anyway.
 

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I've been a Garmin fan for many years, and have had several over this time in my cars. But a few years ago I decided to get a motorcycle specific Zumo for my bike. I'll admit I made a big mistake in buying the lowest priced Zumo, the 220, which was still $400. The screen is too small (3 inches), you cannot plan a route on your PC and download it to the 220, and despite what Garmin claims, the sun will wash out the display and make it unreadable. Also, since it is made for motorcycling, the virtual keyboard uses large "buttons" so that you can operate it with gloves. But that forces the display to show less than a full keyboard on the screen. This makes for a lot of extra keystrokes as you move to different parts of the alphabet to enter data. And even though I update the maps a few times a year, I find that the Garmin maps do not include many smaller roads that I might want to ride on.

The 220 does serve me in one important way. I don't worry about getting lost since I can always hit "Go Home" and the Garmin will get me home.

If I had to do it over again I would buy one of the newer and more expensive Garmin Zumos, even if the cost is $600 or so. They have larger screens, Bluetooth, and can be used to download routes planned on Basecamp.

Zumos are nice in that they are built to handle the weather and motorcycle vibration. One extra hassle, however, is that I have to unplug and carry it with me when I am off the bike. It would just be too easy for someone to take it when I am not around and even though I dislike the 220 I would rather not have it disappear.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
There's not much in the way of accessories that SHOULD be "left on a bike" these days, with folks around who love to steal!

I travel (on the bike, that is) with as few "accessories" as possible, so that anything I find missing, won't impede my ability to get where I need to go.

But then again.............I don't carry a tool kit either........lol.
(Probably a HUGE mistake! I SHOULD at least carry the wrenches for the seats, so I can get to the battery if needed).

-Soupy
 

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Funny thing. I just trashed my Garmin last night. I hadn’t used it in years and last time I was using it actively it would keep randomy rebooting during trips and the battery didn’t hold a charge so I had to leave it plugged in all the time. Had a Magellen before that and I loved it. It was 5 years old and it got to the point where it was randomly rebooting. I have built in Navigation in the car (sucks though) and I have my phone for anything else. Plus the GPS would lose signal if I was in certain areas and would reroute me when it came back online.
 

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Guess I'm gonna sound like a dinosaur - but I do the same thing as Eye-M. I use maps. Sometimes it's a map book - I carry that in a bag on my bike. And sometimes I print them from maps.yahoo.com.

The advantage of going old-fashioned is that you MUST carry the directions in your head. That means - when you are out on the road, you are looking at the road and traffic all the time. I think it's definitely safer.

I understand why people like the convenience of GPS. I use it sometimes in my car. TomTom is pretty good. But I would say that these things are not perfect - if you live in the big cities. It's too slow form giving you instructions about when to change lanes. By the time you move over, according to TomTom, you can't make the move - because there are 50 other cars that already did the same thing. And the drivers won't let you in.

GPS probably works a lot better on the open roads and the rural areas of the country. Mostly, I try to stick with what's in my head. I read the map while I am gassing up the bike.

dT
 

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Charlie Tango Xray
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I tried using my GPS on the bike for a while, but I really hated taking my eyes off the road, even for a moment. Alot can happen on a bike in the amount of time spent looking at a screen. So I stopped looking at the screen and just listened to the voice commands, then realized if thats the case, I could just use one of my phone's GPS apps that I already had in my pocket, and already synced to my Bluetooth....
 

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Oh yeah I forgot to add to my thought. Sometimes there is nothing like getting lost on you motorcycle and just exploring the area you're in.
 

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Lost

Oh yeah I forgot to add to my thought. Sometimes there is nothing like getting lost on you motorcycle and just exploring the area you're in.
You beat me.
I kind of enjoy not knowing where I am. Last year on the way to the track in Kent, I missed two major intersections.
I use a cheap GPS in my truck to tell me the speed. Speedo does not work.

Unkle Crusty*
 

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American Legion Rider
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Not sure I like the darn things although I only use a phone GPS. But I've heard my wife's car GPS do the same thing that makes me not sure of the. Both have given a command to turn NOW. And doing so has or would have put me on a one way street going the wrong way. That actually happened on the bike but I was able to quickly get the heck out of there. The correct street was maybe 10 yards away. The accelerometers I guess can't handle someone actually doing the speed limit maybe? Don't know but it's made me unsure of the things. And if you miss a turn the "recalculating" is so slow that you can get going in circles quite easy. Done that too.
 

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Retired twice: Navy and as a govt contractor
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I used to have magelans, I now have a tom tom and a garmin both with the larger screen, voice activation, BT, lifetime maps and traffic.

One in my sportscar and the other in a waterproof case on the bike. I use it to find my way home after getting lost or misplaced in my surroundings :)
 

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I got lost today. Put an extra 95 miles on and I wasn't 35 miles from home. Only hit two nasty gravel roads. Seems like Texas just can't get past those cheap roads.:(
 

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>>I settled on one particular "Nuvi" unit (65)<<

That's a nice unit for the money, plus it has "lifetime" map updates. I use a Nuvi 40LM (cheaper yet) and it suits my needs. For the kind of use I put mine to there's no need to spend the long dollar for a Zumo or the like.
 

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Save them all!
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I just use my phone - I got a cheapy generic holder from Wally World and use the navigation app.
 
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