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  1. #1
    Bianchi Goddess Bianchigirll's Avatar
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    best Garmin for Bike and Car?

    hello

    is there a model of garmin that is well suited for both my car and use on my bicycles?
    Bianchis '87 Sport SX, '90 Proto, '90 Campione del Fausto Giamondi Specialisma Italiano Mundo, '91 Boarala 'cross, '93 Project 3, '86 Volpe, '97 Ti Megatube, , '90 something Vento 603,

    Others but still loved,; '80 RIGI, '80 Batavus Professional, '87 Cornelo, '09 Motobecane SS, '?? Jane Doe (still on the drawing board), '90ish Haro Escape

  2. #2
    umd
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    Not really. You can use the Edge 605/705 navigation in a car but it would be difficult. It just beeps (no voice) and the screen and directions would be difficult to see while driving. You wouldn't want to ride with any of the car units and other than navigation they would be nearly useless for bike computer purposes.

  3. #3
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    The Garmin Dakota 20 might work for both. It will display some ANT+ stuff (like HR and Cadence).

  4. #4
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
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    I had a GPSMap 76 that I used for my car for a while. I like using it for the bike because it has a nice large screen. The problem with a GPS that is suited for the bike is that it will most likely not speak. I very useful feature in the car.
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  5. #5
    Two H's!!! TWO!!!!! chephy's Avatar
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    Depends what you want from the GPS. I have Garmin 60Cx. It is a hiking GPS, not bike- or car-specific. However, you can buy an optional bike mount for it, and you can get a map that has turn-by-turn directions (though I only tested that feature once and never used it again, because I prefer to plot my own routes, so I don't even remember if the thing speaks or not). The screen is much smaller than that of most driving units, but not bad for a hiking unit. I must say, though, I neither of these two uses are the primary ones for me, so there may be units out there that would do a better job. However, I think this model is one of the best jack-of-all-trades (driving, biking, hiking, geocaching - though it lacks the paperless caching capabilities, sailing - it's supposed to be waterproof, etc.) units.

    But it won't work for you if you want a host of bike-specific features like cadence or heart rate. It's not a bike computer.
    Last edited by chephy; 01-24-10 at 11:58 PM.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by chephy View Post
    Depends what you want from the GPS. I have Garmin 60Cx. It is a hiking GPS, not bike- or car-specific. However, you can buy an optional bike mount for it, and you can get a map that has turn-by-turn directions (though I only tested that feature once and never used it again, because I prefer to plot my own routes, so I don't even remember if the thing speaks or not). The screen is much smaller than that of most driving units, but not bad for a hiking unit. I must say, though, I neither of these two uses are the primary ones for me, so there may be units out there that would do a better job. However, I think this model is one of the best jack-of-all-trades (driving, biking, hiking, geocaching - though it lacks the paperless caching capabilities, sailing - it's supposed to be waterproof, etc.) units.

    But it won't work for you if you want a host of bike-specific features like cadence or heart rate. It's not a bike computer.
    I have something similar, the eTrex Vista CX. Have the optional bike mount and car mount. Nice large color display with turn by turn directions. I've only used it on the bike once, but use it in the car pretty frequently. It does have speed and elevation, but that's it. Only reason I'd use it on the bike is if I was touring.
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  7. #7
    Two H's!!! TWO!!!!! chephy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by knobster View Post
    I have something similar, the eTrex Vista CX. ... Only reason I'd use it on the bike is if I was touring.
    Yes, I see your point. There is no reason to use it on a familiar route, unless perhaps you want to get speed and/or distance (which won't be as accurate as with a dedicated bike computer, I predict) or maybe elevation figures. However, another use for it apart from touring would be to plot a route using Google Earth or some online service like mapmyride, if you're going to a less familiar part of your town/area. Without a GPS, I would sometimes get temporarily lost on some local trails with many different branches. Or choose a less pleasant or longer route over a more pleasant/shorter one because the latter involves some convoluted connections, that are really difficult to remember if you've never taken that route before, like:

    "right on this easy-to-miss small street; immediate left on that small street; follow it as it curves, but do not confuse the curve with the branching off of another small street - that one you don't need!; right again after three blocks and take that easy-to-miss trail entrace; then take the trail that curves to the north-east; cross the first park road; follow the second one for about 300 feet to reconnect with the trail - don't miss the connection, and don't confuse it with the connection for that really short little path that just takes you to the picnic area; keep to the right at the first two forks; keep left at the third fork for the exit from the trail system, but not all the way left, just the left of the two main branches, ignore the smaller unpaved one; left onto the road; right into second alleway - and voila, you just shaved three miles off your trip, and in really nasty highway-like traffic too!"

    (phew, it almost takes longer to type that than to do it ). With a GPS and pre-plotted routes, those problems are eliminated.
    Last edited by chephy; 01-25-10 at 08:32 PM.
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  8. #8
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    It all depends what you want it to do.

    The old Garmin "V" does a lot for what it is. Usefull in a vehicle, even a motorcycle, and small enuf to mount on handlebars.

    Can be found very cheap, and use is similar to what you are used to in the truck.

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  9. #9
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    I use a Garmie Etrex Vista HCX for car bike and potentially hiking. The turn notification is limited to displaying the upcoming turn and beeping, but it works well enough for me.

    It has features I will never use, like "Jumpmaster" and the maritime stuff, but they are easily ignored.
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  10. #10
    Bianchi Goddess Bianchigirll's Avatar
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    well I actually was mainly interested in routing. I need to expand my riding routes this summer but, I am not overly familiar with the area I will be in. perhaps I will just

    thank you for all your help

    perhaps I will just get a basic car model and map out some routes on a rainy day.
    Bianchis '87 Sport SX, '90 Proto, '90 Campione del Fausto Giamondi Specialisma Italiano Mundo, '91 Boarala 'cross, '93 Project 3, '86 Volpe, '97 Ti Megatube, , '90 something Vento 603,

    Others but still loved,; '80 RIGI, '80 Batavus Professional, '87 Cornelo, '09 Motobecane SS, '?? Jane Doe (still on the drawing board), '90ish Haro Escape

  11. #11
    Senior Member ahmose's Avatar
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    I've used my Garmin 705 for a couple of trips in the car. It's not great but i find it more than adequate for my purposes.
    I do agree that a bigger screen and voice prompts would be nice though.

  12. #12
    Senior Member no motor?'s Avatar
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    I got a Tom Tom for Christmas and wondered the same things you did. I ended up deciding to keep it, figuring I'd use it if I got lost while on the bicycle and needed to figure out how to get home.

  13. #13
    Old fart JohnDThompson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by umd View Post
    Not really. You can use the Edge 605/705 navigation in a car but it would be difficult. It just beeps (no voice) and the screen and directions would be difficult to see while driving. You wouldn't want to ride with any of the car units and other than navigation they would be nearly useless for bike computer purposes.
    I use a 705 in the car and on the bike. I don't miss the lack of voice but YYMV.

  14. #14
    Conservative Hippie
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    I use a Garmin GPSMAP 76 CSX on the bike and in the canoe and kayak. I rarely use it in the car, but I have and it works.

  15. #15
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    Nuvi 500 and Nuvi 550.

    https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?pID=13424#
    https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?pID=27442#

    Touch screen. Works just like any other Nuvi in the car, but has a bike mode for on the bike. Waterproof.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Bob Nichols's Avatar
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    I have a Delorme PN 20 handheld and also have a bracket for my bike. Being a handheld, the screen is pretty small. What I like about it is that you can download aerial photos and USGS Quad maps for the areas you want.
    Trek 7.5 FX

  17. #17
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bianchigirll View Post
    well I actually was mainly interested in routing. I need to expand my riding routes this summer but, I am not overly familiar with the area I will be in. perhaps I will just

    thank you for all your help

    perhaps I will just get a basic car model and map out some routes on a rainy day.
    I was real interested in your question because I have the same interest myself.

    When I was researching this question a year or so ago, the problem I discovered with car designs was the lack of battery power. They all indicated limited battery life and, in real life, the functional battery time was even less. I figured that to use a car unit on my bike I'd have to keep it turned off until I got confused and needed to look at a map.

    That Nuvi 500 looks pretty neat to me.

    I'll probably be buying a new tandem this spring. I'm deciding what kind of computer I want for it. I don't care at all about HR, cadence, altitude and the like. I have only limited interest in peak speed or average speed. Navigation, however, would be neat.
    Last edited by Retro Grouch; 01-30-10 at 09:23 AM.

  18. #18
    Bike addict, dreamer AdamDZ's Avatar
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    I have 60CSx and I used it for driving, hiking and biking. Garmin has adapters and attachments for everything. Ideally, you'd want larger screen, touch control and voice for car navigation, but a handheld unit will do just fine too. Then a car GPS can be mounted on a bike as well, but it won't be rugged, waterproof and run only a few hours on batteries. So you will need two units or prepare for some compromises.

    Adam

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