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Old 12-05-05, 01:00 PM   #1
AndyGrow
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Yet another GPS thread.

What GPS would you recommend for a tandem team that doesn't need mapping functions, but wants the speed, distance, time, altitude, etc. available to them, and available for downloading into a computer?

We are looking at the Garmin GPS60, and I have an old GPS12 that I might use, although the altitude readings are questionable at best on that one.

Any suggestions?

Thanks!
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Old 12-05-05, 02:48 PM   #2
Per Kuhlwein
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I have recently done some research and found out that one of the Garmin-units is the case. However they have a problem around the track point limit of 10.000 which means you need a possibility of downloading parts of your long distance tour along the route. Thatīs really a problem if you donīt have a laptop with you on the bike

The unit I first decided to buy was Garmin eTrex Vista C - it include Compass too. As you say, you need not the mapping functions. Then I think you should take a look at Edge 305 - http://www.garmin.com/products/edge305/

Garmin has increased the track points to 13.000 - Great but it can be even better! However, you didnīt want that but I think they have developed the unit especially for biking with all the features we like to use - but believe it or not itīs without the Compass - Iīm really surprised.
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Old 12-05-05, 03:18 PM   #3
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Garmin Gecko 200... SImple cheap, light & easy.
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Old 12-05-05, 05:25 PM   #4
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I have the GpsMap 76C and I am satified with it, but have yet to use it on any long distance tour. It is classified as a Marine GPS but will work well on a bike.

I would consider the Quest 2 but it's rechargable battery pack does not make it a good canidate for touring. But it's shape seems to make it a better fit for the handle bars. Plus it has voice prompts, but you would have to mount a
speaker
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Old 12-05-05, 06:22 PM   #5
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Geko 201 doesn't come with the cable. That's another 25-30 bucks. By the time you add the cost of the cable, the Legend is about the same price.

If you don't want mapping, the GPS 60 is way overpriced by what you need.

If you want a real barometic altimeter, then you'll need either the Geko 301, Etrex Vista or the Garmin Venture if you can find it. I find the GPS barometer to be fine with me which any unit will have.

I would recommend the Etrex Legend (around 150 bucks) and it comes with the data cable. It's a very popular unit. Although you don't want mapping, these cheap unit just happens to come with a base map. It also has something the Geko and Etrex Yellow doesn't have and that is a data screen that can track up to 8 fields at one time. I find that to be the most feature myself. At the bottom is a screen shot from the Legend Color but it is identical to the Legend BW. You can change it to bigger numbers if you want.

Magellan makes the Explorist series which also will have some of the features you want. The 210 is probably the unit that is closest to your needs.

Websites that can help you.

http://www.garmin.com
http://www.magellangps.com
http://www.lowrance.com

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Old 12-05-05, 07:56 PM   #6
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Oh doesn't need mapping! Then the etrex is very nice.
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Old 12-05-05, 08:37 PM   #7
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I have the Etrex Legend as well. It is accurate in altitude everywhere I've hiked. It doesn't use a barometer to measure altitude, it measures from the satellites. I'm sure of this because the unit is accurate in alititude even on pressurized airplanes, at least up to 33k feet or so. (Though Garmin says the Legend isn't designed to measure airplane speeds, it does. It displayed 525 mph ground speed on the plane.)

The base map on the Legend is nice, too, as long as you're on the right continent. There's a bar mount for the Legend that works fine, too, though I'd advise some rubber between it and the bar if you can fit it. It will dampen the vibrations.

The little nubby stick doesn't always work. Otherwise, it's a good unit.
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Old 12-05-05, 09:13 PM   #8
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Gecko doesn't come w/ cable, but cables cost about 5$ or less on Ebay and work perfectly fine (its just some wires in sheathing).... no point in buying the garmin cables...
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Old 12-05-05, 09:24 PM   #9
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Luke,

Maybe it was me but I had a bad experience in buying those home-made serial cable kits, it didn't work. The GEKO only allows you to view 1 data field at one time, the Legend 8 data fields at one time. Photos of each data field is included.


GEKO, you can change the bottom field to what you want but you can only view ONE field at a time.


With the Legend, you can view 8 at time one.
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Old 12-05-05, 09:53 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the replies. Looks like a Legend is just what we need!
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Old 12-05-05, 10:27 PM   #11
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sextant.
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Old 12-06-05, 09:37 AM   #12
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I dunno man,

I used the gecko 201 in the field summer, and you can get the multipane trip computer display w/ custimizable fields... you can even get it to do UTM/latlon simultaenously.

As for the net cables.. there's more than one distributor, i've got a 12V power/serial cable from mrplace on ebay. Works great.Total cost was about 10-15$ with shipping.

I mean its not the greatest GPS but its inexpensive, totally waterproof (unlike the Etrex series where the batt compartment isnt really waterproof) and very light - though batt lfie is about the same as the etrex's
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Old 12-06-05, 12:37 PM   #13
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I'm pretty excited about the new Garmin Edge 305. The manual has recently been posted on-line at:

http://www.garmin.com/manuals/967_OwnersManual.pdf
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Old 12-06-05, 12:43 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RiotBoi
sextant.
A box sextant would be a better touring tool Personally, I prefer the Thataway method of navigation.
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Old 12-06-05, 03:00 PM   #15
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I usually use the Dun-Dee method. *glances up* It's over there, half a day.
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Old 12-06-05, 10:43 PM   #16
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I have the Garmin eTrex Legend C gps bundle pack that comes with topo USA software since a couple days before halloween and i love using it. Map features will be more useful to me when I get the City Select or Navigator software. For now, I use the topo software which probably isn't too useful where i live. It helps me a lot as far as making maps go (especially new trails not on most aerial maps.).
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Old 12-07-05, 09:23 AM   #17
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Quote:
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I usually use the Dun-Dee method. *glances up* It's over there, half a day.
In Montana that's called the "look" method as in "It's 3 looks down the road." You look at a point on the horizon, go to that point and look again, etc. When you get to the end of the 3rd look, you're there
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Old 12-07-05, 12:51 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luke.harrison
I dunno man,

I used the gecko 201 in the field summer, and you can get the multipane trip computer display w/ custimizable fields... you can even get it to do UTM/latlon simultaenously.the etrex's
My bad, the 201 does have a computer trip page that can display up to 4 different fields. The 101 does not have that feature. The Etrex Legend can display 8. The cheapest I can find the 201 is 109 bucks at buy.com and the Legend is 134 bucks at buy.com. You'll still have to buy the cable for the 201 while it comes with the Legend. I got my 8 fields set up this way. This is direct snapsnot from my GPS via G7toWin program.



There's like 30 fields you can choose from in both the Geko and the Legend to display.

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Old 12-07-05, 01:20 PM   #19
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You make a good point, the legend (actually I own the legend, but have used the Gecko) is by far a better deal if you want mapping.
However, if you dont want mapping the gecko is much lighter and simpler and fully waterproof..
Its a matter of priorities
Personally, I prefer the legend, but the gecko is a solid choice too, especially coupled with a laptop for mapping (for a car for ex.)
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Old 12-07-05, 03:33 PM   #20
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I can't imagine not wanting mapping. I love it. I keep paper maps stored away and reveiw them at night. During the ride it's all on the handlebars.
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Old 12-07-05, 11:15 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luke.harrison
However, if you dont want mapping the gecko is much lighter and simpler and fully waterproof..
I have had problem with the rubber coming off my Legend as have others. Superglue worked wonders but I do wonder what would happen if I dropped it in a pond while geocaching (I think it floats but I'm not going to experiment). It seems to hold up find in the rain though on the bike. But I've also dropped by Legend when I wrecked my bike at 20mph by crashing into a dog. I was hurt. The Legend flew off the bike and got a stratch but still works to this day.

For hiking, I would prefer the Geko 201 or 301 for the lesser weight and smaller batteries. Those 2 ounces might not seem much but for long distance hiking, it adds up. I would have to get used to the keys not being on the side and I would miss my joystick.

The units I would love to get a good review on are the Magellan Explorist 210 and the Lowrance H20 from someone who actually uses them for bicycling.
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Old 12-08-05, 04:25 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gpsblake
The units I would love to get a good review on are the Magellan Explorist 210 and the Lowrance H20 from someone who actually uses them for bicycling.
I see from the Product Info:
Magellan eXplorist 210 GPS that: "Stores up to 380 files, each containing 500 waypoints"

Does that mean I can, letīs say go on a tour lasting 4 mounths and then apart it during the tour into fx 20 files each containing 500 tracked waypoints. Then back home I will be able to put all the files together on the map?

If thatīs possible I think it will solve my problems on long distance touring. Anyway no Garmin-units are able to do so. However 500 x 380 equal to 19000 waypoints compared to Garmins 10000 makes a great difference.

Can you or anybody explain or confirm above? Thank you!
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Old 12-08-05, 06:07 PM   #23
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Per Kuhlwein,

500 x 380 = 190,000 not 19,000...... Which would be awesome indeed!!!

I've haven't had a chance to see a 210 yet but going by the specs, it seems to be an amazing unit for around 140 bucks and comes with cable and 20 MEGS of memory.

The geocaching forum is probably far and away the best source of information on GPS units. Those guys eat and sleep with their GPS units.

http://forums.groundspeak.com/gc/

I going to link your question to their forum and see what they have to say.
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Old 12-08-05, 06:11 PM   #24
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Here is the thread I just started on Geocaching about the 210.

http://forums.groundspeak.com/GC/ind...&f=11&t=115999

I look forward to their opinions and answers
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Old 12-09-05, 06:18 AM   #25
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Per Kuhlwein,

500 x 380 = 190,000 not 19,000...... Which would be awesome indeed!!!
Oh yeah, I was comparing to the Garmin and couldnīt imagine it was so much higher.

However, thanks a lot gpsblake. The answer from "robertlipe" in the Groundspeak Forum is just great. I will go and take a look at the recommended x400 and put an SD card in it. It is just what I want and what most long distance cyclists need. Thank you!
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