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    • YORKSHIRELASS
    • By YORKSHIRELASS 5th Oct 16, 7:32 PM
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    YORKSHIRELASS
    Best gadget for cycling route mapping
    • #1
    • 5th Oct 16, 7:32 PM
    Best gadget for cycling route mapping 5th Oct 16 at 7:32 PM
    Hi all, excuse my ignorance here, I am not very tech savvy. I have started road cycling and want a gadget like a Sat nav so that I can plot or upload my route and it will give me directions.

    I know there are smart phone apps but I have a very old very basic smart phone with no memory so that's no good.

    Ideas please? I liked the look of a Garmin Edge Touring but what would you recommend?
Page 1
    • sacsquacco
    • By sacsquacco 5th Oct 16, 10:41 PM
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    sacsquacco
    • #2
    • 5th Oct 16, 10:41 PM
    • #2
    • 5th Oct 16, 10:41 PM
    I have a Garmin navigator which will navigate you free with rechargeable batteries. No battery mad smartphones needed. Mine was £30 on a boot stall ... Ebay has them on sale all the time.. they work well with free maps downloaded O.S. maps are expensive for the Garmin and because of the small screens they are not that suitable for road use. Mine is a Garmin Dakota. personally there is nothing to beat a paper O.S map for your area , costs a tenner. Best maps in the world.
    the Garmin will use satellites to navigate you, whereas the mobile apps will use the towers only and won t work if you go in remote areas with no nearby cell phone towers
    Last edited by sacsquacco; 05-10-2016 at 11:15 PM.
    • YORKSHIRELASS
    • By YORKSHIRELASS 7th Oct 16, 7:00 AM
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    YORKSHIRELASS
    • #3
    • 7th Oct 16, 7:00 AM
    • #3
    • 7th Oct 16, 7:00 AM
    Thanks. Thats helpful. At the moment I use the old paper OS maps but having to stop and check the map is a pain sometimes when you are cycling.

    I have been looking on ebay and I think that's the way to go, I am not bothered about the latest model.
    • Nasqueron
    • By Nasqueron 7th Oct 16, 9:05 AM
    • 2,989 Posts
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    Nasqueron
    • #4
    • 7th Oct 16, 9:05 AM
    • #4
    • 7th Oct 16, 9:05 AM
    Aldi were selling the Garmin 810 off last week, been replaced by 820 so going cheaper but still a good unit, probably none left but ask around if you can pay £180

    Otherwise second hand garmin would be fine and you can even download free maps for some models
    • Johnmcl7
    • By Johnmcl7 7th Oct 16, 1:55 PM
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    Johnmcl7
    • #5
    • 7th Oct 16, 1:55 PM
    • #5
    • 7th Oct 16, 1:55 PM
    If you've a bike shop nearby it may be worth going in and having a look as quite a few have Garmin displays now so you can see what you think of the screen size, resolution and detail.

    I had a Garmin Edge 800 which I chose to use for mapping and recording rides but ended up not using it for mapping as I found the screen too small and the resolution too low to be useful When I was getting lost I ended up using my phone for its larger and detailed screen. That's just me though hence I think it may be worth having a look yourself and see what you think.

    John
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 7th Oct 16, 2:41 PM
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    jack_pott
    • #6
    • 7th Oct 16, 2:41 PM
    • #6
    • 7th Oct 16, 2:41 PM
    I use a 4m to the inch road atlas. Cut the spine off, and a single page folded in four fits into a map holder on the bars made from a Tupperware CD case. A GPS is not much use as I don't stick rigidly to a pre-planned route.
    • Aretnap
    • By Aretnap 7th Oct 16, 5:50 PM
    • 2,431 Posts
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    Aretnap
    • #7
    • 7th Oct 16, 5:50 PM
    • #7
    • 7th Oct 16, 5:50 PM
    the Garmin will use satellites to navigate you, whereas the mobile apps will use the towers only and won t work if you go in remote areas with no nearby cell phone towers
    Originally posted by sacsquacco
    Any modern smartphone should have GPS built in, so the accuracy is as good as (for practical purposes) a dedicated satnav, and isn't dependent on having a phone signal.

    Personally I'd suggest getting a new phone and using an app. You can get a good Android Smartphone for not a lot more than £100 these days - I'm very happy with my Moto G4 which I bought for £160 from Amazon, and I regarded that as a bit of an indulgence. My preferred app is Viewranger, which lets you download OS 1:50000 maps at about £7 for a region (a region is equivalent to quite a few paper maps). Add a waterproof case that you can mount on your handlebars for about £15 and you're still cheaper than a dedicated GPS - and you have all the advantages of a modern smartphone as well.

    I've never seen the need to buy a dedicated GPS. I'm told that the advantages are better battery life, better weather resistance and being easier to operate with cold wet hands. But I usually find my battery is fine for all but the longest rides (and you can get a backup battery for a tenner if you're worried about all day rides), and I'm a bit of a wimp so I try not to be out in the worst weather anyway, so a smartphone works well for me.
    • brat
    • By brat 7th Oct 16, 8:04 PM
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    brat
    • #8
    • 7th Oct 16, 8:04 PM
    • #8
    • 7th Oct 16, 8:04 PM
    My garmin forerunner allows me to download a route to it but it is a breadcrumb trail with no map overlay, so IMO in't next to useless to follow, but I hardly use it anyway. I usually know where I'm going. If I don't know where I'm going and worry I might go off route I have the UK Map app which cost £7.50 for the iphone. It's an offline OS map down to 1:10000 so it shows detail right down to individual houses. All you have to do is download the relevant tile for the area you want to explore. You can download google maps for offline use too.
    Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler.
    • YORKSHIRELASS
    • By YORKSHIRELASS 7th Oct 16, 9:19 PM
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    YORKSHIRELASS
    • #9
    • 7th Oct 16, 9:19 PM
    • #9
    • 7th Oct 16, 9:19 PM
    Thanks all. My teenage son keeps saying to me that I may as well get a new smart phone - mine is a Moto G which is 3 years old OR buy a second hand smart phone and use that just for cycling.

    Have not heard of Viewranger so will look into that. I am still a bit undecided. We tend to map out a route before hand and follow that but quite often like to explore new places so dont want to worry about getting seriously lost and having to make a massive detour!
    • Nasqueron
    • By Nasqueron 8th Oct 16, 11:46 AM
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    Nasqueron
    I use a 4m to the inch road atlas. Cut the spine off, and a single page folded in four fits into a map holder on the bars made from a Tupperware CD case. A GPS is not much use as I don't stick rigidly to a pre-planned route.
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    The better versions of the GPS will happily track you and then plot you a route to a way point or home on the fly without needing to stop and look at the map at each junction even if you don't want to follow a fixed route
    • esuhl
    • By esuhl 8th Oct 16, 12:16 PM
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    esuhl
    I use an old Samsung Galaxy SII in a waterproof mount on my bike. The only issues I have is that sometimes it can take ages to pick up a GPS signal, and with tracking on, the battery only lasts 60 to 90 minutes!

    I use an app called MapMyRide, which can draw your route on a map (so you can see where you are and where you've been), or you can trace out a route in advance so you can easily see where to go.

    I got an external battery pack for the mobile, so it lasts several hours now.

    I tried a Garmin from a friend's motorbike, and it was MUCH more reliable... but I couldn't really get to grips with the map display. I just couldn't figure out where I was! Maybe I'd get used to interpreting the map, but I prefer the OpenCycleMap layer used by MapMyRide, etc.
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 8th Oct 16, 1:18 PM
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    jack_pott
    The better versions of the GPS will happily track you and then plot you a route to a way point or home on the fly without needing to stop and look at the map at each junction even if you don't want to follow a fixed route
    Originally posted by Nasqueron
    But how does the GPS know where I want to go? If I only give it a destination it's going to send me the quickest/shortest way, which isn't necessarily where I intend.
    • Nasqueron
    • By Nasqueron 8th Oct 16, 11:14 PM
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    Nasqueron
    But how does the GPS know where I want to go? If I only give it a destination it's going to send me the quickest/shortest way, which isn't necessarily where I intend.
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    No but that's not the point of GPS, if you go out with one you can see on the screen where you are with more accuracy than a map and plan a route to where you want to go or find a route back in an emergency. If you get out of range of your map then you're stuffed or you start having to carry multiple maps if your route is going to cover areas that cross over map areas.

    OP wanted something to allow her to plan a route to follow which a GPS will do. What you want to do is irrelevant as she doesn't want to do that
    • esuhl
    • By esuhl 9th Oct 16, 7:23 AM
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    esuhl
    But how does the GPS know where I want to go? If I only give it a destination it's going to send me the quickest/shortest way, which isn't necessarily where I intend.
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    GPS stands for "global positioning system". All it does it determine where you are.

    Route planning is a totally separate feature. If you intend to follow a route, simply tell the route planning software what that route is. Then you'll be going exactly where you want.
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 9th Oct 16, 10:58 AM
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    jack_pott
    If you get out of range of your map then you're stuffed or you start having to carry multiple maps if your route is going to cover areas that cross over map areas.
    Originally posted by Nasqueron
    I carry a road atlas, it covers the whole country and occupies about the same space as two OS maps.

    If you intend to follow a route, simply tell the route planning software what that route is. Then you'll be going exactly where you want.
    Originally posted by esuhl
    Yes, but as I said above I don't stick rigidly to a pre-planned route.
    • esuhl
    • By esuhl 9th Oct 16, 1:33 PM
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    esuhl
    Yes, but as I said above I don't stick rigidly to a pre-planned route.
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    Then don't use a route planner! It's still useful to have a GPS so you can see where you are.

    When I started cycling again, I'd spend half my time completely lost, with not even the vaguest idea which direction I wanted to be heading. A smartphone with GPS and mapping would have come in really handy.
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 9th Oct 16, 3:10 PM
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    jack_pott
    It's still useful to have a GPS so you can see where you are.
    Originally posted by esuhl
    I have a walker's GPS for when I'm walking but it's of dubious benefit most of the time. It'll find you if you're in serious trouble, but the rest of the time it just makes you a lazy navigator. There's also a lot of time when I walk along faffing with it for no reason when I would otherwise have been enjoying the view. I've thought of taking it cycle touring, but the atlas I use doesn't have the gridlines numbered so it's a bit of a pain locating position anyway, and it'd be another charger to carry.
    • elverson
    • By elverson 10th Oct 16, 10:09 AM
    • 372 Posts
    • 199 Thanks
    elverson
    Thanks all. My teenage son keeps saying to me that I may as well get a new smart phone - mine is a Moto G which is 3 years old OR buy a second hand smart phone and use that just for cycling.

    Have not heard of Viewranger so will look into that. I am still a bit undecided. We tend to map out a route before hand and follow that but quite often like to explore new places so dont want to worry about getting seriously lost and having to make a massive detour!
    Originally posted by YORKSHIRELASS
    I use a Moto G with the Strava app for tracking and it works very well.

    For navigating, you can also set up a route in Strava in advance and then 'follow' it if you mount the phone on your handlebars.

    Also, in the Google Maps app you can download maps for an area which you can then see even if you have no signal.
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