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Which Motorcycle GPS?


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What exactly are you looking for?  They all have different feature sets.  The Monterra is the exact GPS that I want with a charging Motorcycle Mount, however its too pricey and city  maps are purchased separate.  I want one that can be handheld, and used as vehicle navigation, that also has Bluetooth.  At this point i'm sticking with my phone for GPS mounted to the handlebars with a usb charger.
 
Some have Curvy road routing, hills, there are built in charging mounts, traffic, Bluetooth, waterproof, tons of different GPS that have different features.
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Some of my requirements are: Bright daylight display, Bluetooth with voice navigation, vehicle powered, waterproof gloved hand operation. I have also read that some systems wont get you back on track if you make a wrong turn, which would seem to be a real issue. The Monterra https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/on-the-trail/handhelds/monterra-/prod113522.html looks like a capable model. They all seem to be around $400 to $800 USD from what I have researched.
STUFF EVERYTHING - I'VE ALWAYS GOT MY BIKE!
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Just replaced my trusty Garmin 2610 which still works but no Garmin mapping updates since 2009 and the OSM maps are a bit data heavy for the poor processor to cope with.
 
So, as the price of the Zumo 3xx range has dropped with the newer Zumo 590 being out, I splashed out on a Zumo 390 for under 300 UK pounds. The satnav unit fits on the same RAM ball as the older 2610, on the left handlebar alongside the multi-function switchgear. It is in the position I like, out of my line of site, needing a drop of the eyes just like a mirror.
 
There are other mounting options to have it always in your field of view e.g. Givi do a mounting rail.
 
I have it set up with a 12V cigarette plug so that I can remove it from the bike when commuting. This stops it being stolen and protects the electrickery from the elements when the satnav unit is not in place.
 
You can use the device on foot too, as there is a battery. Useful in a city centre when finding your way back to a hotel.
 
I like the Garmin range as you can plan routes using any mapping tool that produces GPX files. Just import the route into Basecamp to upload to the device. This allows you to share routes with friends - useful for me as I organise holidays for groups of a dozen more people. I don't think this is as easy with TomTom devices.
 
Basecamp itself is perfectly useable but I prefer Garmin's older Mapsource software. This is quite happy to manipulate the latest mapping data but will not upload the files to the Zumo. There are other tools. I am told the Hárley Dávidson web based tool is good.
 
Alternatively, use a phone or tablet. The problem with these is they drain the battery quite quickly in satnav mode and my 1A charger can't keep up with the demand. If you have them in an enclosure they get very hot and can lock up or die on you.
This signature is left blank as the poster writes enough pretentious bollocks as it is.
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I am using an old Garmin 2595LTM I used to use in my car mounted in the center of the bar with...
 
RAM-HOL-GA59U (RAM 2595 cradle) http://www.rammount.com/part/RAM-HOL-GA59U
RAP-B-201U-A (RAM Short Double socket 1 inch ball) http://www.rammount.com/part/RAP-B-201U-A
RAP-B-400U (RAM Small Tough Claw W/1 Rubber Ball ) http://www.rammount.com/part/RAP-B-400U
RAM-B-238U (RAM Base) http://www.rammount.com/part/RAM-B-238U
 
Works great with gloves, has limited BT integration, and is decent in bright sunlight. It is not water/weather proof, or motorcycle specific, but it was bought and paid for a long time ago. You can get them new or refurbished for @$100-$125.
 
 
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Zumo 550 for me. Used on two tours now and is very reliable with the lifetime maps I bought. Set all my routes up on tyre and download them to the unit. Only gripe is the memory is 2gb and can't fit full Europe maps on so I had to cherry pick the bits I needed for my euro tour.
 
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I have a Garmin nuvi. It's OK. It's waterproof. It has decent battery life on it's own.
 
Routing with just the unit is simplistic. Gravel roads on its maps aren't accurate (i keep running into gravel that Garmin days is paved). It can't actually upload routes, but it does upload data points from Mapsource. Routes are close but not exactly what I programmed in the computer.
 
The frustrating thing is that the unit will reroute using its simple parameters (my old 2610 would keep the old route from the next waypoint or so), so I have to reload my route if I miss a turn or choose a slightly different road.
 
It's a 2010 and I'm having problems this year with random rebooting. I think that the plug on the GPS is loose. It was used on a thumper before this bike, though (which also killed my 2610).
 
I keep thinking about a Zumo, but I'm cheap. That refurbished 2610 was half the price of the cheapest Zumo.
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  • 7 months later...
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I use a Garmin 2557LMT that I bought used for $60. I have it mounted to the handlebar for now with a RAM mount.
Edit: moved it above the instrument cluster.

2015 red FJ-09: Cal Sci screen, Sargent seat, ECU flash, slider combo, cruise, Rizoma bars, Matts forks, JRi shock, slipper clutch

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  • 3 weeks later...
Just got a Garmin Zumo 660LM on sale from Walmart online for $334.95...full retail is $599 but since it's being discontinued retailers are slicing the price. Revzilla has it "on sale" for $499 and I'm sure glad I shopped around some more. And it comes with a Ram mount, so you don't have to buy that separately. I mounted it on the left side of my handlebars. Anyway, it's a great GPS unit at an excellent price.
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I've been considering the TomTom Rider 400. Even though I already have a ram mount ball ready to be used, I'm fairly certain it comes with a universal ram mount kit. It seems to have pretty good reviews, would be curious if anyone here has happened to pick one up yet.
 
http://www.amazon.com/TomTom-Rider-400-Portable-Motorcyle/dp/B011J1P9NG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1460653813&sr=8-1
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  • 4 weeks later...
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Oldfart I also recently scored a great deal on the zumo 660lm. Do you use the bulky, multi-wire power cradle that was included? I'd like to power the zumo using the stock 12 volt cigarette lighter outlet, but am wondering if the connection will be sufficiently weather resistant.
 
The stock cradle has wires for traffic info and something else I don't plan to use.

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Yes, I used the cradle that came with it and just keep the extra wires tidy under the seat. I had previously tried using a Garmin car GPS with the cigarette lighter power outlet but the plug kept vibrating out of the outlet. Other FJ riders have also said they have a hard time keeping plugs in the outlet due to vibration. My new one is wired directly to the battery so you do have to remember to turn it off when you're not riding the bike or it will stay on and eventually drain the battery.  But it stays on now during gas stops, etc., which some people don't like but I do.
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I had trouble with plugs vibrating out of the acc socket; solution is to wind the lead of what you are plugging in one turn around the headlight adjuster just below the socket, with the minimum amount of lead between the loop and the plug. Enough to stop it from working its way up and out.
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  • 2 weeks later...
I've been considering the TomTom Rider 400. Even though I already have a ram mount ball ready to be used, I'm fairly certain it comes with a universal ram mount kit. It seems to have pretty good reviews, would be curious if anyone here has happened to pick one up yet. 
http://www.amazon.com/TomTom-Rider-400-Portable-Motorcyle/dp/B011J1P9NG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1460653813&sr=8-1
sk8nsanta - have you tried the TomTom yet? I have a Garmin unit and for the life of me, I have not been able to use basecamp to upload my .GPX routes. I wonder if TomTom devices are easier to use in this regards... 
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Love my Zumo 350lm. Have had it for a few years and this will be the third bike it has been mounted to.I made a RAM mount for the handlebar clamps and use a 2" RAM arm with the Zumo powered cradle.
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