Gps for a sand rail

sandman829 0 Points
edited November -1 in GPS Recommendations
Hello, I am looking for a gps to use in a sand rail. The things that I want it to do are, way points, track, routes, and speed. What it has to endure are sandy, wet, cold conditions. I go to the coast year round and have had hail, fog, snow, rain and sunshine. I have been looking at all of the ones out there and am looking to spend between $100.00-$200.00 what do you suggest?

Comments

  • Boyd 1364 Points
    Sorry to show my ignorance, but what's a "sand rail"? Are you traveling on foot? On a motorcycle? Bicycle? Vehicle?
  • gatorguy 196 Points
    It's similar to a dune-buggy.
  • dhn 202 Points
    See here:
  • ...rear engine...open frame...roll bars...balloon tires...

    yeah, it's a Dune Buggy. :shock:

    Ok, so call me stupid, but what will the GPS do, tell you what dune to take? No roads?? Why not just use a compass? (Unless you use the breadcrumb feature to find your way back home?) I know I'm being a little facetious here...couldn't resist! :wink:
  • Boyd 1364 Points
    In that case, maybe Garmin BirdsEye and custom maps would be useful? See: http://forums.gpsreview.net/discussion/17474/x/p1/ and http://forums.gpsreview.net/discussion/15841/x/p1/]

    Might be hard to keep this under $200 though. The models to look at would be the Oregon 450, Dakota 20 and GPSMap 62 series. We saw the Dakota 20 going for $180 over the holidays and the Oregon 450 dropped to $230. Both are more expensive now. BirdsEye costs $30. The less expensive Garmin units (eTrex, 60csx) don't support these features.
  • gatorguy 196 Points
    Didn't Garmin add Birdseye compatibility to the Dakota 10's? You can go that route (cute, huh 8) ) and stay under $200 including the Bike and Hike bundle. That adds a copy of City Navigator and a basic bar mount for the gps, making it a pretty darn good deal IMHO. It's one of Garmin's promo bundles they're pushing right now.
  • Boyd 1364 Points
    I would strongly recommend against the Dakota 10 since (as you well know), it has no card slot and is limited to about 1GB memory. That's plenty for regular maps, but very inadequate for BirdsEye. I find that a 16GB card, which I filled some time ago, is also a bit on the small size for BirdsEye.

    If you're going to spend the $30/year for unlimited downloads I think it would be a false economy to limit yourself to only 1GB memory with no expansion. If you don't want BirdsEye, then I suppose you could make a case for the Dakota 10, but personally I wouldn't buy any GPS that didn't have the capability to expand memory.

    In the case of the "Bike and Hike", I believe that bundles City Navigator with the Dakota, right? You can't even load all of City Navigator in the built-in memory of the Dakota 10. But I suppose it depends on how you will use the unit. If you only travel within a relatively small region, it may suffice.
  • gatorguy 196 Points
    For $200 I think it's worth the small inconvenience of loading a couple Birdseye images for the area you're ATV'ing in. And having a couple states loaded shouldn't be an issue either. I don't expect the OP is making a cross country trip driving his sand rail. Changing out maps and or/images on demand isn't that time consuming, especially if it's a 5 or 6 square mile area that day. I'd certainly put it on a short list.

    EDIT: FWIW, I have an entire state worth of maps, both highway and 24K topo (Florida) and three states worth of 100K topo's, plus a trails map overlay. And still over 300mb of free space on a Dakota 10. I think a few Birdseye images would fit there fine wouldn't it?
  • Boyd 1364 Points
    All I can say is that I don't agree. If you're going to spend the money for a GPS and a subscription to BirdsEye then I think you'll be frustrated. If you really only want to cover a small area then it will be fine. But if I planned to keep the unit for a few years, I wouldn't want it to be crippled by the lack of expansion.

    I posted my calculations for coverage of the highest quality imagery in the BirdsEye thread that I linked to. In summary:

    2.56 MB file size per square mile, or 390 square miles coverage per GB

    So, if you only installed BirdsEye imagery and nothing else on the Dakota 10, you could cover an area of about 330 square miles - roughly 18 miles x 18 miles. That seems very limited to me. Using a 16GB card on the Dakota 20 or Oregon you could cover more than 16x as much area and still have internal memory free for other maps.

    In your free 300MB you could cover about 100 square miles with BirdsEye, or a 10 mile x 10 miles area.

    Yes, you can swap files but that involves screwing around on your computer. Look, if you're happy with the Dakota 10 then it's great. But I just think it would be a bad choice if you want aerial imagery. That's me... everyone needs to set their own priorities.
  • gatorguy 196 Points
    We don't really disagree Boyd. :)

    It's more economics than anything. The OP apparently has a limited budget, and the Dakota 10 fits it. If he's willing to spend another $100 (which still won't get him City Navigator maps), he can of course get a couple more features and an SD slot. If he's unwilling/unable to spend the extra, the Dakota 10 will probably do everything he needs and then some. $200 is a very good deal IMO. At least $150 less than the other options for the same bundle.
  • ...rear engine...open frame...roll bars...balloon tires...

    yeah, it's a Dune Buggy. :shock:

    Ok, so call me stupid, but what will the GPS do, tell you what dune to take? No roads?? Why not just use a compass? (Unless you use the breadcrumb feature to find your way back home?) I know I'm being a little facetious here...couldn't resist! :wink:
    No not stupid. People who don't run on the sand don't now that there are no real land marks, most rails don't have a speedometer(some places do have speed limits do to crowds). The main things I am looking for are way points(make it so I can get to that spot again) routs(so I can set up trips in advance based on conditions), speedo(self explanatory). A topo map of the dunes would not really do much good since the terrain truly changes every time the wind blows. Was looking at the Garmin legend H.
  • gatorguy 196 Points
    Well there you go. :)

    If you have no interest in any maps there or back (City Navigator) or aerial views (Birdeye) and instead looking for a very basic handheld gps, then that's probably an acceptable choice.
  • Well there you go. :)

    If you have no interest in any maps there or back (City Navigator) or aerial views (Birdeye) and instead looking for a very basic handheld gps, then that's probably an acceptable choice.
    Several people that I go bugging with have tried the maps and the sand changes so fast that if you load the latest map and head to the coast the map will be wrong.
  • Boyd 1364 Points
    The main things I am looking for are way points(make it so I can get to that spot again) routs(so I can set up trips in advance based on conditions), speedo(self explanatory).
    What do you have in mind regarding routes? Normally these are dependent on a map that supports routing. You can create a route without a map, but it will just consist of straight lines between points that you choose. Is that what you want?

    The Legend H does not include any kind of real map. It has a basemap which is mostly blank. So, you would mainly see a blank screen with the points that you created in advance, using some kind of software on your computer.

    If what you need is really this simple, then I guess it would meet your needs. But if you want any sort of map at all, 24MB memory and no card slot will be a problem IMO.
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