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Thread: Low cost GPS

  1. #1
    Lucky motorradmike's Avatar
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    Low cost GPS

    Hi guys:

    I travelled across Canada this year.
    I also went South to Tennesee to ride the "Tail of the Dragon".
    In all it was about 20,000KM.

    I got lost(not terribly) a couple times, and spent far too long looking for things like campsites and Grocery stores.
    A GPS could be your friend in times like those but $700 is a bit much!
    I'm willing to forego the waterproof feature since I could get 6 for that price.

    I got a Garmin 1350 on sale for $115 and built this cradle and mount in about 15 minutes.
    Well, the idea took about 15 minutes.
    The build was more like mumble-mumble hours.

    First, have no fear.
    I drilled and tapped holes in the top triple tree to accept the Delrin spacer. These holes go through thin parts of webs in the casting.


    Cradle and spacer parts. The Delrin machined like a dream. If you haven't tried it, buy some for your next low temperature project.


    Finished spacer on the bike.


    Cradle on the spacer.


    GPS in and on.
    The fit is a tight slide, I will try it tomorrow, the extra aluminum to the left can be drilled for a lock if it tends to slide out but I really doubt it will.


    It's not meant to be looked at while riding, I just need it handy for quick access in a lay-by or whatever.
    Now I can find a McDonald's easily, if anyone hasn't tried their coffee recently - try it. I prefer it to Tim's, and it rivals my home roasted from green beans.
    Mike Marr
    1978 Yamaha XS750 (Needs rings), 1996 BMW R1100RS, 2004 Honda CRF230F

  2. #2
    God? What god? roborider's Avatar
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    I hear you. I bought a Tom Tom with about a 5 inch screen for about 100$ new. I don't get sound in my headphones since it has no external plug, and it is not waterproof, but neither of these features is missed for the extra $5-600 it would cost for a 'motorcycle' GPS.

    The price of GPS now has approached the disposable cell phone level of cost.
    Rob C. , Raleigh, NC
    '05 R12RT, R90/6
    2007 CBR600RR & 09 V-Star
    Suzuki DR 350

  3. #3
    Total Freak mikegates's Avatar
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    I have been using a garmin 205w for 3years now. I use it every day in my work truck and have about 6000 miles of bike use on a ram mount. it has been through a few good rain storms and got frosted on one nite. I paid $125 for it then.
    95 R100Rt, 07 650 GS
    Mike
    Eagle, wi
    "He's gone and nothin gone bring him back"

  4. #4
    OldBMWMaster JDOCKERY132445's Avatar
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    Buy used

    I bought a Garmin 276C here in the flea market for $100.00.

    It is a wonderful unit. Two yuears on my bike and not a single problem.
    Jerry Dockery
    309 N. 3rd. Ave.
    Kure Beach, NC 28449
    1996 R1100RT main bike & 1985 K100RS...too fast to believe.

  5. #5
    Outlander Omega Man's Avatar
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    Cradle and spacer parts. The Delrin machined like a dream. If you haven't tried it, buy some for your next low temperature project.
    Nice job Mike, I'm a fan of using delrin for projects because of the reasons you mentioned. I have a friend that saves me the "drops" from his bigger projects. It looks like you have access to some sort of milling machine?
    "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
    2009 F800GS 1994 TW200
    Part of the Forum Threadside Assistance Program

  6. #6
    Small road corner junkie pffog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JDOCKERY132445 View Post
    I bought a Garmin 276C here in the flea market for $100.00.

    It is a wonderful unit. Two yuears on my bike and not a single problem.
    Great score for $100

    A careful shopper can buy $700 units for a LOT less, if they are patient. In the last couple of months I have purchased three 276C with accessories for between $250-$350 , sold the first two for $750 and $650 on fle-bay, and am waiting for the other to show up, and I will sell that too. And I still have ram mounts and extra memory to sell.

    Over the last couple of years I have flipped eight or so units, I like doubling my investments.

    The extra cash will buy a years worth of tires for the bike

  7. #7
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    Ziploc Bag

    Good on ya!! Ingenuity like that is priceless!!

    I bought a refurbished Garmin unit with the "lane assist" feature. It's so useful going through unfamiliar large cities. It also has an earphone plug, so I can get audible instructions, too, which is also very valuable in unfamiliar city traffic. I attached it to the bike with a RAM mount, and carry a ziploc bag with me to protect it from the rain.
    I think the ziploc bag trick is pretty slick. I just slip the ziploc over the GPS unit, zip the seal as much as possible, leaving only enough for the mount to stick through, and the GPS screen is still visible, yet dry.

    Only thing I'd like to change is to make a shade over the screen to increase visibility when the sun's at the wrong angle. Otherwise, it's worked great and cost was minimal.
    Piperjim

    '95 R1100RS
    '61 John Deere 3010 LP

  8. #8
    Lucky motorradmike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omega Man View Post
    It looks like you have access to some sort of milling machine?
    I have a Mill and Lathe that I use in my business.
    When it's slow, the boss doesn't mind if I make stuff.
    Mike Marr
    1978 Yamaha XS750 (Needs rings), 1996 BMW R1100RS, 2004 Honda CRF230F

  9. #9
    Registered User john1691's Avatar
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    I went with a Garmin 765 car model, around $165 at the time. Bought a Aquabox from RAM to keep it dry and a spare power cord to mount through the Aquabox, so I don't have to take it apart to use in the car. This model has lane assist, MP3 with memory card slot and an earphone out port, that I also ran out the Aquabox using a stereo extension cord, that I plug my Cardo coiled cord into when I get on the bike. Works well for me, I can listen to music and/or directions, plus see the GPS fairly well (not perfect, the clear screan protector isn't great in daylight). Way cheaper than the 550 or 660 model that are bike specific, though with their programmability features and not needing to worry about water, they have positives, too.
    john1691
    2006 KTM 950 Super Moto

  10. #10
    Touring Panpsychist Theo's Avatar
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    Garmin N??vi 550. $250. IPX7 Waterproof. No bluetooth, no headphone jack; simple and straight forward.
    Theo

    2009 R1200RT, 2007 Shadow Aero 750 (sold)
    2012 MINI Countryman S, 2004 MINI Cooper S JCW, 2000 BMW 328i

  11. #11
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    +1 on the nuvi 550. All the features I care about that are in the Zumo models for a great deal less $$$.
    Glenn
    2003 F650GS Dakar

  12. #12
    RK Ryder
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    I went on a 7,000 mile trip this past spring with a rider who had picked up a $100 Garmin car GPS. He provided it with no protection from the rain. If I remember correctly, there were maybe three occasions when it failed to function correctly, I suspect due to the rain. When I played with it, explaining features to him, I discovered that it had many more features than my Zumo 660. Bottom line; for the money, he had the better deal.
    Paul
    Retired and riding my RTs, the '87 K100 & the '98 R1100 !
    Treasurer of the Forest City Motorrad Club #159
    Knights of the Roundel #333

  13. #13
    Registered User kihei7's Avatar
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    I have used a Magellan car-specific GPS unit on my bike on several occasions. Audio out is the best. Can't see screen in bright daylight, but shouldn't be looking at screen while riding anyway. Mounted on top triple clamp shielded by fairing to protect from rain. Powered from aux power connector. Lots cheaper than motorcycle specific GPS!


    ---
    I am here: http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=33.346995,-111.815871
    John Sachs
    Pacific Blue 2002 R1150RS
    Citrus Green 2004 R1150R Rockster
    BMWMOA 45617 AMA 576082

  14. #14
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    Question Screen Visability

    How does the use of non motorcycle GPS compare to the Zumo with daylight and bright sun? I am willing to deal with rain if I can still see the display, given the price difference and added features of the Nuvi line. Tom

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tkrapp View Post
    How does the use of non motorcycle GPS compare to the Zumo with daylight and bright sun? I am willing to deal with rain if I can still see the display, given the price difference and added features of the Nuvi line. Tom
    I have the nuvi 550, which is waterproof and rated as "Motorcycle friendly" by Garmin, just like the Zumo models. My brother has a Zumo and I have compared them side by side and see no difference in the display. The nuvi 550 at $299 ($249 street price) is still a lot more expensive than many auto GPS models. I have a Magellan that I paid about $89 for quite a few years ago that works fine in the car, but I don't know how well it would work in sunlight. The best way to determine that would be to hold them side by side under the same lighting conditions.
    Glenn
    2003 F650GS Dakar

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