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GPS for Bicycle / Motorcycle

Old 05-18-14, 09:35 PM
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Panza
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GPS for Bicycle / Motorcycle

Hi guys, I'm looking to do more exploring on my bicycle. Doing the occasional Century without relying on my dwindling phone battery would be nice. The number of times I've pulled out my iPhone and started navigating phone in hand is far too many.

Are there any moderate Bicycle GPSs that I can also use on my motorcycle? The handle bars are about the same width so I figure it could hold a decent GPS as well as load bike maps. I dont have much experience with bicycle GPSs, but I hear they're expensive. It may be a better option for me to just buy separate GPSes for bike and motorcycle. I'm just looking for any cheaper alternatives here : )!
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Old 05-18-14, 10:11 PM
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Hi,
I recently got a Garmin Edge Touring. I've used it a few times and so far, I really like it.
https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/into...rod134596.html

There are better ones for motorcycling. I don't think this would be suitable because the screen is fairly small which is fine for typical cycling speeds but, not for safely using at higher speed. I'd be a little hesitant about relying on the mount on a motorcycle. My husband has one of the more expensive Garmins designed for motorcycling.
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Old 05-19-14, 05:43 AM
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I started using a GPS about 7 years ago with a Garmin GPSMAp 60 csx. Still use it for the bicycle. Uses AA batteries, so its easy to carry spares or buy new ones along the way. I loaded the Garmin Streetmaps, which have way more details than the maps that come with the unit. Easy to load points of interest or routes from the WEB (ridewithgps.com) or make your own routes. I used this on my motorcycle for a couple of years, but switched over the motorcycle to a Garmin Nuvi. Much bigger screen and easier to use with the touch screen. Since I can power it from the motorcycle electric system, no need to worry about battery issues. I use the mounts from RAM. They have mounts for most gps's and also mounts for bicycle & motorcycle bars.
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Old 05-19-14, 06:03 AM
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Garmin hiking gps models work great. I use mine on the. scooter and all my bikes. Good basemaps it does turn by turn navigation as well. Mine is a 2007 model ut itvruns on aa or external
power and is very hard to break.
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Old 05-19-14, 06:21 AM
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I like the older discontinued Garmin recreational GPS units, specifically the Etrex Vista and Etrex Legend. The handlebar mount works on bicycles and motorcycles. They use AA batteries, I carry about a 5 day supply of rechargeable AA batteries with me on bike tours. The screen stays on when they are turned on. My newer Garmin 62S, the screen turns off until I push a button, drives me nuts.

It all depends on what you want the GPS to do. I look at them to see if I am on course or not. But I do not use them for turn by turn directions. In a few days I leave for a big trip, I will have a 10 year GPS on the handlebar but will have the newer 62S along in the handlebar bag for when I want to search for grocery stores or motels.
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Old 05-19-14, 08:19 AM
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I agree with VT_Speed_TR about the RAM mounts. I've also heard good things about Touratech mounts, but they are spendy. I'm just using my phone and letting "the plug III" and my dyno-hub keep my phone charged. Works as well or better than anything else I've seen for the bike if navigation is all you are looking for. The google app even does turn by turn voice. Don't trust all the roads it recommends though.
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Old 05-19-14, 08:51 AM
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Then again, you could think long and hard about why you need a GPS to do a hundred-mile bike trip.
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Old 05-19-14, 09:05 PM
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There are alot of Garmin GPS units on Ebay selling for a song. Create the route at home so you don't waste time trying to do this on the road. Learn how to create routes with the Garmin software then upload to your GPS. You don't even need built in maps if you're going to do it this way. Don't let the high cost of the new models scare you away. Someone already said the hiking GPS units are just fine. I agree but get the map sofware.
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Old 05-21-14, 10:46 AM
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You have an iphone and you're looking for a GPS? Why not just mount your phone on your handlebars?
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Old 05-21-14, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Walter S View Post
You have an iphone and you're looking for a GPS? Why not just mount your phone on your handlebars?
The number of times my iphone has died on my while riding my bicycle is far too many. : )! I'd rather have my phone on hand to make an emergency call when it counts! Recently my phone died 45 miles or so into my recent bike ride. In the cold iphone batteries die fast. Died even faster when I would snowboard : )! Even my friends' newer iphones have the same issues.
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Old 05-21-14, 03:10 PM
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Thanks for all the feedback though. I will definitely get separate bike and motorcycle GPS units. I didn't really factor how important the size of the screen and safety would play a part. Helpful tips from everyone as usual. That's why I love you all haha
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Old 05-21-14, 06:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Panza View Post
The number of times my iphone has died on my while riding my bicycle is far too many. : )!
Sounds like you need The Plug to keep your phone charged while riding. (NFI)
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Old 05-21-14, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Walter S View Post
You have an iphone and you're looking for a GPS? Why not just mount your phone on your handlebars?
I would be concerned about using an Iphone as a GPS. My Garmin GPS flew off the handlebar not once but twice! I was certain the unit was destroyed but it worked like a charm. Don't try that with an Iphone. I was using the older hiking Visa cx unit.
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Old 05-22-14, 06:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve View Post
I would be concerned about using an Iphone as a GPS. My Garmin GPS flew off the handlebar not once but twice! I was certain the unit was destroyed but it worked like a charm. Don't try that with an Iphone. I was using the older hiking Visa cx unit.
I've used an iPhone for to navigate for years in winter and summer. My iPhone 5 has been with me for the last 25k miles. I keep it in the map case of my handlebar bag, so it's right in front of my face while I ride. Usually even if I navigate with the GPS all day the battery holds up fine. I've noticed that the Google Maps app will drain it fast though. I navigate with the tomtom app which I think makes better bicycle routes and gives better turn by turn directions. I keep it charged by using the Mophie Juicepack Pro, and I keep THAT charged with my dyno hub.

By being careless, I have managed to lose the phone while riding a couple times though. My concentration fades sometimes and I might just lay it on the handlebar bag instead of secure it inside the map case. But the phone is inside an otter box which has done a good job of protecting it.

I also carry an iPad, which I generally just use to watch movies and such at night. But it can serve as backup navigation, should I lose the phone, it quits working, etc. But I've been lucky enough (for several years) to not need that option yet.
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Old 05-22-14, 07:30 AM
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I have the vista hcx. dropped it a few times, mounts on bike or scooter. Runs on aa batteries, screen stays on. Has a compass and altimeter,moving map, searchable routing with a good base map. I really see no
need to upgrade.
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Old 05-22-14, 09:48 AM
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I use a Garmin Edge 800 on my bicycle. I typically charge it every day, but I usually have around 50% battery left at the end of each do so it could probably last for two days of riding.

On the motorcycle, I'm currently using my iPhone 5 in a RAM mount. It connects to my Sena SMH10 bluetooth communicator so I can hear directions and prompts. This setup is far from ideal, but given that I already owned the Garmin and Sena at least it was cheap! I'd love to own one of the Garmin Zumo motorcycle-specific GPS units, but since most of my moto rides are local and I rarely use GPS I can't justify the cost. If I were using the motorcycle to tour rather than the bicycle that might change.
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Old 05-22-14, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by TimButterfield View Post
Sounds like you need The Plug to keep your phone charged while riding. (NFI)
My God.... you are my Jesus.
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Old 05-22-14, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Panza View Post
My God.... you are my Jesus.
I have way too many problems to be either of those two. And, now I have the new problem of needing a dynamo hub to go with the plug and then a QuadLock mount and adapter to hold my iPhone. The list just goes on and on...
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Old 05-26-14, 08:08 PM
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Originally Posted by TimButterfield View Post
Sounds like you need The Plug to keep your phone charged while riding. (NFI)
This looks interesting. Can you explain how that works? Is there a battery in that or does it need the hub? If the hub is required, is it wired or wireless? Does the hub work on the front hub or rear? I have looked at the website and I didn't see this, but this looks like a nice solution.

Thanks for any help.
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Old 05-26-14, 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by IARide4Fun View Post
Can you explain how that works? Is there a battery in that or does it need the hub? If the hub is required, is it wired or wireless? Does the hub work on the front hub or rear? I have looked at the website and I didn't see this, but this looks like a nice solution.
I have no experience with it myself, though I may get it and a dynamo hub this coming fall. To quote the linked page: "The Plug III will produce clean 5V / 500 mA USB power from the AC current of hub dynamos from speeds of 11 km/h (7 mph)." The current version is The Plug III. This page at Crazy Guy on Bike explains some things about the prior version.
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Old 05-26-14, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by tourbiker View Post
Hi,
I recently got a Garmin Edge Touring. I've used it a few times and so far, I really like it.
https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/into-sports/cycling/edge-touring/prod134596.html .
Does the Edge Touring allow live tracking? I'd love to find something like this where my spouse can check in on how far along I am, or even be able to identify quickly where I am in case of a major breakdown that can't be repaired roadside.
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Old 05-27-14, 12:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Giant Doofus View Post
Does the Edge Touring allow live tracking? I'd love to find something like this where my spouse can check in on how far along I am, or even be able to identify quickly where I am in case of a major breakdown that can't be repaired roadside.
No, the Garmen Edge Touring doesn't enable live tracking for your spouse to follow your route. My husband uses a Spot GPS tracker (SPOT SATELLITE MESSENGER :: HOME PAGE) when he tours on his motorcycle. I can see his route on my computer as it's updated while he rides and can zoom in to see images of where he is, even before he sends me a photo. :-) He also rides with a Garmen GPS.
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Old 05-27-14, 01:05 AM
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I've got an Garmin Edge 800 gps/computer and keep it charged via my dyno-hub and Ewerk with cache battery.
Wish I'd saved my money as in daylight I cant make out whats on the screen.
Fine in darkness, but I dont tour at night.
I've tried some different screen savers (non glare etc.) to no avail.
I do like its computer functions and its been overall reliable unlike many others experience.
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Old 05-27-14, 01:18 AM
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Originally Posted by rifraf View Post
I've got an Garmin Edge 800 gps/computer and keep it charged via my dyno-hub and Ewerk with cache battery.
Wish I'd saved my money as in daylight I cant make out whats on the screen.
Fine in darkness, but I dont tour at night.
I've tried some different screen savers (non glare etc.) to no avail.
I do like its computer functions and its been overall reliable unlike many others experience.
Not sure of all the hiking models but mine has a large range of screen brightnesses. It can be totally visible in full sun or muted for long rides. I've read the 800 and 810 both have that issue of not being bright enough. Perhaps the 1000 will sort out the issue?
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Old 05-27-14, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by rifraf View Post
I've got an Garmin Edge 800 gps/computer and keep it charged via my dyno-hub and Ewerk with cache battery.
Wish I'd saved my money as in daylight I cant make out whats on the screen.
I haven't had any problems with mine. When the sun is shining on the display, it's perfectly readable. In shadows, I tap the screen to turn on the backlight and it's also readable. The only problem I have is that fingerprints are highly visible on the screen. My Edge 705 had hard buttons, rather than a touchscreen, so it was much better in this regard...
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