Author Topic: navigation system  (Read 1626 times)

navigation system
« on: April 23, 2018, 07:08:13 am »
Hi Rob gill here,
I am thinking of buying a GPS for audaxing,
 any recomendations?

Re: navigation system
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2018, 07:19:07 am »
https://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?board=63.0
DC Rainmaker
To get an answer better than those you can read above, you'll need to define what your personal navigational needs are and what else you'd want the machine to be able to do (eg ride/HR/cadence/power interface/display and phone alerts and more).

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
    • Fuchsiaphile
Re: navigation system
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2018, 09:17:04 am »
Garmin have several models of GPS optimised for cycling.  The slightly counter-intuitive thing is that 'optimised for cycling' doesn't mean they are ideal for audax.  Of current Garmin models, the Etrex 20x (primarily a walkers' model) is good for audaxing, although you do have to also buy a handlebar mount for it, available separately and usually sold as a 'Oregon' handlebar mount.

Other makes than Garmin are available of course, but the only advantage that they all have in common is that - they're not Garmin.
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

Manotea

  • Where there is doubt...
Re: navigation system
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2018, 09:54:53 am »
Garmin have several models of GPS optimised for cycling.  The slightly counter-intuitive thing is that 'optimised for cycling' doesn't mean they are ideal for audax.  Of current Garmin models, the Etrex 20x (primarily a walkers' model) is good for audaxing, although you do have to also buy a handlebar mount for it, available separately and usually sold as a 'Oregon' handlebar mount.

Other makes than Garmin are available of course, but the only advantage that they all have in common is that - they're not Garmin.

NB, you can ge the mounts on ebay for a couple of quid.

Trying to work out to integrate this with an outfront style mount used by the edges. Should be doable with the aide of a craft knife. :)

Re: navigation system
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2018, 12:33:00 pm »
If you have a smartphone then a suitable mapping App such as Osmand, Locus maps or ipbike would be the place to start. Depending on the distances you ride you might need an external battery pack.


FWIW I find that a 4x18650 battery pack leaves me with a fully charged phone after a 200 km ride but I need a change of batteries if a stretch to 300 km as The same battery pack powers one of my lights.

Re: navigation system
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2018, 03:26:14 pm »
I'd also recommend an Etrex 20x.

It runs about 24h on a pair of AA rechargeable (I use black Eneloop), which is good for 300 km, or maybe 400. After that you just pop in a spare pair (at a control, unless you forget).
It works using real buttons, which work when wearing gloves, and when it's raining (which touchscreens often don't).
In common with other Garmins, it's tough and reliably waterproof without the need for a case or bag.
Compared to the "Edge " cycling models, it's bulkier, doesn't have the same variety of neat mounts available, and doesn't do many "training" type functions, just concentrating on navigation.
The official handlebar mount is sound, if somewhat on the crude side, but the cheapo ebay versions have a reputation for not being very secure (or at least used to).

For longer rides (which audax rides usually are), anything with a built-in battery is likely to need supplementing with an external battery.
This is untidy, and USB plugs & sockets are neither particularly water resistant nor mechanically robust, being designed for use somewhere like the bedside table. It's not common, but a dead USB socket on your GPS or phone would be very annoying, and possibly expensive.

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
    • Fuchsiaphile
Re: navigation system
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2018, 04:44:05 pm »
Yes, the problem is that 'cycling' in Garmin's mind doesn't extend beyond going out for a day-ride.  So the Edge range of GPS are the GPS equivalent of the rechargable cycle front light - neat, blingy, desirable ... but not entirely fit for audaxing purpose.

NB, you can ge the mounts on ebay for a couple of quid.

If you use a cheap white-label mount for an Etrex then a lanyard (not supplied) is absolutely essential.  You don't have to dirty your hands on Ebay, they are available through Amazon.
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: navigation system
« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2018, 04:50:12 pm »
I'd say the lanyard was, if not essential, then extremely desirable.  About as desirable as some minor off that only hurts your pride and bar tape ending with a sickening crunch as your expensive gadget gets run over by a taxi[1], isn't.

Off-brand eTrex/Oregon/Dakota mounts seem to have manufacturing tolerance problems.  Which is to say they either fit tightly, or they don't, and it's a bit of a gamble as to what you get.  They don't appear to be made of cheese or anything.  But even a well fitting mount can jettison the device in a crash or if a darksider / tandemista kicks it during an incompetent mount/dismount.


As to the suitability of eTrexen, Edges other manufacturer's GPS receivers, or smartphone based solutions, the important question for the OP is how they're planning to use it.  That's a twofold question - hardware issues like batteries and mounts have already been touched on, but more fundamentally, what's the intended workflow?  Do you want to upload a GPX track from the organiser and follow that?  Do you just want something to show you where you are on the map?  Do you want to plonk a waypoint at each routesheet instruction and have it beep?  Do you object to lovingly curating routes in horrible software on your PC beforehand?  Do you want spoken prompts?  And so on...

(Spoiler:  Sturgeon's Law is alive and well in the world of GPS software.  There is no perfect solution, only what you can make work well enough for you.)


[1] I was fortunate enough to learn this lesson with a £15 battery light, rather than a GPS receiver.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: navigation system
« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2018, 05:54:54 pm »
I'd say the lanyard was, if not essential, then extremely desirable.
When I got an Etrex Vista HCx, the lanyard attachment point broke off before first use, whilst I was attempting to poke a not-quite-thin-enough length of nylon cord through.
I think it hit the road at normal riding speed (15-20 mph) 4 or 5 times without any damage other than a few honourable scars on the corners. Its eventual death (satellite receiver failure of some sort) seemed unrelated, being at least a year after the most recent road impact.

Like I said; tough.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: navigation system
« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2018, 06:01:44 pm »
I once dropped my Vista HCx onto concrete.  In a moment of cool of the kind that only ever happens when you don't have an audience, it bounced and I caught it.

After various crashes, droppings and rough-surface riding it eventually developed the abraded-PCB-pads-under-spring-contacts failure, which I repaired with bodge-wire.  Not long after, the rubber band slackness became terminal.  It's unusable, but AFAIK it does still work.

No problems as yet with my eTrex 30, other than the SD card occasionally escaping from the crappy holder during battery changes.  It doesn't have the rubber band, which bodes well.

Garmin make good hardware.  Their software is a bit of an acquired taste.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: navigation system
« Reply #10 on: April 23, 2018, 06:09:03 pm »
I've never bothered with a lanyard , my etrex 30 once came off at about 25-30mph and bounced down the B4594 and was fine, so I figure if it can survive that it can survive anything it's likely to encounter. Since then I use just enough insulation tape to make it a tight enough fit that it's hard to remove (doubles as good theft protection, often needs encouraging with the heel of the hand) but not so tight the tab that holds it home doesn't engage.
It is what it is. It's not what it's not, so it must be what it is.

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
    • Fuchsiaphile
Re: navigation system
« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2018, 10:01:55 am »
I once dropped my Vista HCx onto concrete.  In a moment of cool of the kind that only ever happens when you don't have an audience, it bounced and I caught it.

As a schoolboy I did that with a 2-litre round-bottomed glass flask.  The chemistry lab had a wood-block floor.  There was an audience, the closest of whom was the chemistry master ...
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

Pingu

  • Put away those fiery biscuits!
  • Mrs Pingu's domestique
    • the Igloo
Re: navigation system
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2018, 11:05:22 am »
I once didn't replace the back properly on my eTrex30 after changing the batteries. I was very glad of the lanyard on that occasion.

Also, I don't fancy trying to find a freedom-seeking GPS in the dark in the middle of nowhere.

Re: navigation system
« Reply #13 on: April 24, 2018, 11:32:07 am »
I'd also recommend an Etrex 20x.
Does this one give turn-by-turn alerting with tcx/gpx routes?

quixoticgeek

  • Mostly Harmless
Re: navigation system
« Reply #14 on: April 24, 2018, 11:46:21 am »

I've been very pleased with my Wahoo Elemnt Bolt. It's seen me through my 4 Audax attemps (one scratch, 2 success, 1 out of time, but did the distance), as well as lots of riding elsewhere. All in all I've done 3000km with it and it's been pretty good.

On 2 of the Audax rides, a fellow rider with an etrex 20, gave up on navigation and rode the rest of the way with me as my navigation was better than his.

Depending on the way the GPX is produced, depends on if the wahoo gives you turn by turn. but I personally am quite happy with a dotted line on a map to follow.

I have mine tied up with a HRM, cadence sensor, and speed sensor.

J
--
Beer, bikes, and backpacking
http://b.42q.eu/

Re: navigation system
« Reply #15 on: April 24, 2018, 11:50:14 am »
I do have a Garmin Edge Touring Plus that does give turn-by-turn alarms for tcx files/routes.

Re: navigation system
« Reply #16 on: April 24, 2018, 12:04:08 pm »
I always use my Etrex just to show a track.  This means that, once you have chosen the the gpx file and set to show on map, you don't go to "View Map" and "Go".  Instead, find the map page and zoom to your preferred magnification; your track should show. 

The best set-up guide I have found is Francis's at http://www.aukadia.net/gps/lw3_0.htm

Manotea

  • Where there is doubt...
Re: navigation system
« Reply #17 on: April 24, 2018, 12:27:50 pm »
That's the old school etrex. New models you have to set the track to 'show'.

I still use mapsource to manage GPS tracks, with wingdb3 to convert the track with 0000s of track points to a set of routes for turn by turn routing. Set the GPS to show routes and tracks to confirm the route plotting isn't taking you off piste.

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
    • Fuchsiaphile
Re: navigation system
« Reply #18 on: April 24, 2018, 01:03:25 pm »
I'd also recommend an Etrex 20x.
Does this one give turn-by-turn alerting with tcx/gpx routes?

It can't read tcx.  It would give turn by turn alerts with a gpx route but I rather suspect you actually mean a gpx track, using the method which works with some Edges - in which case no it doesn't do that.
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

Re: navigation system
« Reply #19 on: April 25, 2018, 07:56:35 pm »
I've been using an eTrex20 for a couple of years now. I use cycle.travel to plot routes and then drop them into the Garmin. If the weather is good, you can run them directly off your dynamo, even at night, there's no discernable drop in the light's performance.
Install the batteries, run from the dynamo and remove and store the cable if it rains... It's not using the batteries if it senses a connected cable.
It shuts off after a minute or two when you stop, but automatically resumes once you start moving again which is very neat.
For the price it's unbeatable.

It does so a sort of turn reminder in that you can get it to light up at night as a turn approaches.