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Anybody using a GPS for cycling here ?(11 posts)

Anybody using a GPS for cycling here ?PeterRider
Oct 29, 2003 10:31 AM
If yes, what model do you use, what are the pros and the cons ?

Thanks !

Pierre
I've got a cheap Walmart handheld ...Humma Hah
Oct 29, 2003 10:55 AM
... that is way obsolete. Eats batteries like a sumbitch. Doesn't have a computer interface or external antenna jack.

I personally don't have much use for GPS during normal riding. The altitude solution in GPS is not great, and for road riding you can tell where you are just fine with a map.

The speed reading IS very accurate on straight stretches, and can be used to calibrate your cyclocomputer. Where it really shines is making maps of new trails for MTB use.
Magellan SportTrakundertrained
Oct 29, 2003 11:49 AM
Picked up a GPS earlier this year. It's got 2megs of built in base map and you can upload another 6 megs of info from map cd's. It's pretty handy for making maps of mtn. bike trails. I've used it on my roadbike a few times just to play around with it. I don't have a handlebar mount so I just stick it in my jersey pocket and review the info at home when it's connected to the computer. You can review your ride in real time, make altitude profiles and save rides onto your computer.
Magellan Meridianpurplepaul
Oct 29, 2003 12:19 PM
I bought one on Ebay, brand new, for $110. I chose it because it uses a more sensitive antenna (quad helix) than a lot of the Garmins and the lower level Magellans.

Anyway, the Meridian is kind of large for putting on your handlebars, but it can be done quite easily. It is very accurate, and the moving map is fantastic. I bought the lowest level Meridian, with 2 megs of memory. But, here's the cool part, just slide a memory card in and you suddenly have space for hundreds of megabytes of maps. I never take a car trip without it, and when I was on vacation I just put it in my jersey pocket when going for rides in unfamiliar territory. It's great never having to worry about getting lost. And it is pretty cool to see what's coming up ahead.

Frankly, though, I don't see much need for it for everyday rides. For rides on unfamiliar roads, I wouldn't be without it.
YesDragon33
Oct 29, 2003 12:33 PM
I had been using a Garmin E-trex for over a year with a handle bar mount, it worked great. I just recently purchased a Garmin Rhino which has the radio function as well but have not used on the bike yet. If you get some type of map software like Topo USA and a data cable you can download places you have ridden and analyze the ground you have covered, not particularly interesting if you ride the same place all the time, but if you travel or mountain bike it is nice.
re: Anybody using a GPS for cycling here ?Merlin Vince
Oct 29, 2003 12:51 PM
I use the Garmin Geko 201. It is probably the smallest GPS out there. About the size of a small cell phone. I mount mine with Velcro to my stem.

It does not have 'maps'. But instead points you in the right direction (turn left, go straight for 2 miles, turn right, ...). You can interface with your computer to program routes and waypoints. You need to be a computer nerd to accomplish this.

I like it a lot, but you need in my opinion, to have a clear understanding of what the unit does and does not do.

It is great for marking where you parked your car, your hotel location, your home, restaurants, clubs, ...

Remember to bring an extra set of batteries for long rides!

Hope this helps.

Vince.
For a very short timebimini
Oct 29, 2003 1:38 PM
I put one on my bike 5 years ago. It was a Magellin I think. I bought it for my boat, worked great for navigating the intercostal and on open waters. After I sold my boat I tried it on my bike.

Nice toy to tinker with on a bike but not really any more information than a good cycling computer.

I used in on the roads and the older units you need a paper map anyway to find your way, it served no real purpose. (I can find my way on roads without a GPS using a map)

The negatives are they suck down batteries fast 4-AAs in 8 hours. They are big and clunky. I had a problem with battery compartment door popping open and dropping all 4 batteries all over the road when I hit a major bump.

After playing with it for a couple of weeks it came off the bike and has stayed off since.
re: Anybody using a GPS for cycling here ?VW
Oct 29, 2003 2:21 PM
I have a Garmin Etrex. I use it mainly for centuries. However, most organizers don't want you to know the exact route, so you have to do some guessing from reading the route description. I do feel alot more safer on centuries ... not so much it tells me that much during the ride, but since I had to really study the route before programming it into the GPS, I already had a pretty good idea of where I was going.

There was this one time when I got lost on a club ride because I was taking a short cut back instead of doing the whole ride. I took a few wrong turns, and I was totally lost. I managed to used it to navigate me back to my car.

Here what I found when trying to navigate back to my car with little knowledge of an area:

1. The zooming in and out function takes forever to update, and it make navigated very hard when road names are unfamilier. It also hurt when you have poor memory.

2. Zooming in and out changes the street resolution of the map. A street that you intended to travel that show on the display may disappear when zoomed out, so your route and thought-process continuity gets disrupted.

3. As with regular street map, you have no idea if your route is hilly. I actually navigated back to my car on a very hilly route :(

One good thing about using it on a familiar (but not that familiar) ride is when you are climbing a hill, the GPS can tell you how far on the road you have already traveled/climbed. Sometime the road and climbing end with the next turn, but you didn't recognized it, and the GPS display will show it.

VW
I use Timex time and distanceCartman
Oct 29, 2003 2:44 PM
I got it for my b-day, primarily for running. Very accurate when the signal is not lost due to heavy folliage.
Garmin eTrex Vistaterry b
Oct 29, 2003 4:08 PM
I carry it in my jersey pocket once in a while for grins. Pros - altimeter, everything you could ever need in a GPS, Garmin's top model. Cons - none. It's complex, but it's intuitive.
Garmin eTrex VistaFtHoodMtBkr
Oct 29, 2003 10:29 PM
Had mine for just over a month now. Likewise I carry it in a jersey pocket.

No real need for it. It's a geko3. I just think it's cool as can be that I can go home and download into the TOPO Hawaii software and see my rte on the map, do elevation profiles etc.

Heck just the TOPO software alone is cool--I've already determined one local paved 4 mile uphill grind here is steep enough overall to be of good practice for Cycle to the Sun rte on Maui. Provided the Afghanistan or Iraq tour goes well next year, I can't wait to get to Maui or the Big Island.

Very nice indeed.

Formerly FtHoodMtBkr
Now-ArmySlowRdr
Oahu Ridin'