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Thread: best GPS/ SATNAV?

  1. #61
    Out There Somewhere bmwrider88's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommcgee View Post
    I've used Google Earth a bunch of times to see if there were services at various exits. Being from New England, this is more of an issue for me riding in rural Canada, but I'd use it anywhere with sparse population.
    guess that will work well as long as there is signal for the phone?

  2. #62
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bmwrider88 View Post
    i know many folks' world turns on the dependence on the GPS, and i will eventually have one. but it seems there remains the definite advantage to the old-school and reasonably fail-safe method of writing the directions and mileages on a piece of paper and posting them in the tank-bag window?
    GPS will never give you the big picture, but hell, I still use the tank bag window for listing cities along a rough route when I haven't had time to create GPS waypoints in advance.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

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  3. #63
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bmwrider88 View Post
    guess that will work well as long as there is signal for the phone?
    Never done it that way, always in advance route planning.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

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  4. #64
    Touring Panpsychist Theo's Avatar
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    I suppose I'll never give up the paper maps and notes. After all, you DO need electricity if you depend on a GPS as your only reference source. And, while I have a reasonable expectation that that I WILL have electricity (bike or internal battery), one never knows.

    However, there are some things that a GPS can do that paper and notes cannot. Here are a few in my thinking:

    1. I can easily find the nearest gas station, restaurant, or (god forbid!) hospital no matter where I've become lost;
    2. the ETA feature is great when time is a factor in your travels;
    3. on unfamiliar roads, it may be an advantage to know the distance to the point where a turn needs to be made...especially on curvy or rolling terrain;
    4. (discovered last summer) on the rare occasion when I ride at night on unfamiliar roads, I can see upcoming curves way before my headlights reveal them.

    I've mounted my GPS above the instrument cluster so it is a very quick glance to check the screen. Now, when I do use a map in the tank bag window, I always feel uncomfortable averting my eyes so far.

    GPS devices aren't for everyone. I know a lot of purists who feel that they detract from the experience of riding. I'd hate for them to diminish their experience by using one!
    Theo

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  5. #65
    Outlander Omega Man's Avatar
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    As an old map and compass guy I like the fact that with a map I get a large overview of the area. I do throw a map pouch on the tank with the map but I usually have the basic directions written in large print so it's not much of a glance to check them. For me, the GPS would be a good way to find the fastest way home from a day of cruising around. The GPS with the ability to zoom in-and the related POI (points of interest) feature would be handy. Hopefully this spring I will have figured the best all around unit to pick up. I have a Garmin 76cs now and it's good for walking around but the screen is too small to do me any good while in motion.
    "Well they say.. time loves a hero but only time will tell.. If he's real, he's a legend from heaven If he ain't he was sent here from hell" Lowell George
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  6. #66
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omega Man View Post
    As an old map and compass guy I like the fact that with a map I get a large overview of the area.
    It has to be asked: Who still carries a sextant?
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

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  7. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by THEO View Post
    GPS devices aren't for everyone. I know a lot of purists who feel that they detract from the experience of riding.
    Your list of GPS advantages is a good one. Another big advantage for me is the automatic route recalculation when you deviate from the route, accidently or on purpose. When I have plenty of time to get to my destination, I like to take the back roads. I have taken many rural road detours that were not shown on my road map, but so far have not found a road that was not shown on my GPS.

    You can take side roads with a paper map, but it doesn't take too many turns before you have to stop and study the map to find your way. With the GPS, you can follow whatever road looks interesting without even slowing down. Trying to study a map to plan a new route while moving could be dangerous.
    Glenn
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    Quote Originally Posted by gblawler View Post
    Your list of GPS advantages is a good one. Another big advantage for me is the automatic route recalculation when you deviate from the route, accidently or on purpose.
    When I'm working, I keep recalculate on, when I'm not, I keep it off. My life is filled with wrong turns.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

    -Tom (KA1TOX)

  9. #69
    Touring Panpsychist Theo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommcgee View Post
    It has to be asked: Who still carries a sextant?
    It's never sunny in New England! Guess I should have thought of that before buying that pricey Astrolabe.
    Theo

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  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by THEO View Post
    It's never sunny in New England! Guess I should have thought of that before buying that pricey Astrolabe.
    Something I read in a book many years ago about sailors getting a position fix has stuck with me, because I've been watching it happen for the last 45 years in New England.

    It's this: Even on the darkest of days, when the wind has been blowing from the east for 5 or 7 days in a row, around noon, the sky usually lightens enough to see the sun and get a position fix with a sextant.

    It happened near Boston today.
    Last edited by tommcgee; 01-25-2011 at 11:50 PM. Reason: dislexia
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

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  11. #71
    Toadmanor
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    when someone tells me to be home at a certain time, i set my GPS to go home. Then I can just read the arrival time and get home in time so that I follow the suggestion.

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toadmanor View Post
    when someone tells me to be home at a certain time, i set my GPS to go home. Then I can just read the arrival time and get home in time so that I follow the suggestion.
    I have found the ETA on my GPS to be amazingly accurate. The best part of that for me is that it shows me when I do NOT need to hurry. Hurrying causes a lot of accidents. Without the ETA information, it may seem like you are running late even when you are not.
    Glenn
    2003 F650GS Dakar

  13. #73
    Outlander Omega Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toadmanor View Post
    when someone tells me to be home at a certain time, i set my GPS to go home. Then I can just read the arrival time and get home in time so that I follow the suggestion.
    I was wondering what model GPS you were using? Thanks, Gary
    "Well they say.. time loves a hero but only time will tell.. If he's real, he's a legend from heaven If he ain't he was sent here from hell" Lowell George
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