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Messages - mdxix

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I like to record all aspects of my trips including performance, temperatures, split times, etc.

I have the Edge 510—see my earlier comments about this powerful little thing. I use it with just about all my activities: hike, run, bicycle, paddle, & walk in the park.

To confirm, once I have the Garmin device (hopefully edge touring) and copied the maps over
The Garmin Edge Touring device already come with "preloaded Garmin Cycle Map". These are based on Open Source Map.

It may only have maps of your regions, if you are outside the US. In that case, you will need to add the US maps.

(providing I can pick up signal)?
I cannot think of any place in the United States where you cannot pick up the signal, rain or shine, unless you are in a cave. It will take a few minutes when you first turn on the device to locate the satellites.

There are no subscriptions or any other associated costs?
Correct, GPS signal is courtesy of paid taxes ;)

All the areas I looked at in Northeast USA seems to be well mapped. Check the map for the areas you are interested in directly at

I recommend minimum 4GB SD memory card, preferably 8GB. The file size I used last was close to 3.5GB. I would leave extra for additional files to store on the card.

Yes to all of the above. In fact, Garmin is now shipping Edge Touring model with OSM.

Take a look at earlier discussion for instructions and test results.

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Re: GPX file splits when uploading
« on: December 31, 2013, 09:41:56 pm »
The recommendation above from SlowAndSlower should work with a text editor. That would be the way I do it as well.

Another option is to use Garmin's BaseCamp software:
  • Open the GPX file in BaseCamp
  • You will notice the file contains waypoints and routes. The routes are usually at the bottom of the list
  • Select each route and "Create Track from Route"
  • Once you have the tracks, select all of them and select to "Join Tracks"
  • Export or save the final track
This option gives you the opportunity to edit the route in the software while you are at it.

Note that "Tracks" are different from "Routes" in GPX language, especially with Garmin, as there are limits to each. In general Tracks work more universally and reliably. Routes are more suitable for devices with maps to give navigation prompts.

You can convert between both as you need.

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Re: GPX file splits when uploading
« on: December 29, 2013, 08:18:58 pm »
Any clues on how to resolve this?
What is it you are trying to do?

For each ACA Route, there are multiple GPX files, each file contains multiple sections.

Have you found an alternative to Google Latitude
  • With Find my Friends, the iPhone locator is always on. I exchange location with a few close family & friends. They know my location at any time.
  • While on a ride, I always use Garmin Live Track with the Edge 510:
    • The data is updated constantly showing accurate location at all times. I find other apps to lag behind in showing the location and tend to be slow in retrieving the information.
    • Live Track shows the route taken along with other information about the ride such as speed, distance, and elevation.
    • Minimum impact on battery. In a test I did a few weeks ago, while temperature was hovering around freezing, after three hours of riding, with normal use of phone for a few text messages, phone call, etc, including Live Track, the iPhone 5s was still at 55%. Other apps drain the battery much quicker as they use the phone GPS. During that test, as soon as I turned the phone GPS on, the battery drained fully in about 40 minutes.
  • Life360. I have not used it but read recommendations about it.
The app store shows many options when searched for "share location".

Please share other options that you find.

Gear Talk / Re: Advice on lightweight touring / bikepacking
« on: December 05, 2013, 10:06:37 pm »
What fork mount are you using for the front light?

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Re: ACA GPS files on Google Earth problem
« on: December 03, 2013, 09:32:24 pm »
Here is a sample file of GPX track of Section 1. Import that into Google Earth. It should work. Remember that the distance is still not the same.

I followed these steps to create this file:
  • Edited the original GPX file from ACA to remove all Waypoints. Only the Routes remained. This is because Waypoints are irrelevant to the Route.
  • Edited the file from Step 1 above to merge all the Routes into one route. This is to make sure that the track is rendered in the correct order.
  • Converted the file in Step 2 above from Route to Track using GPSies web site

Do you have any idea why when I enter ACA data into Google Earth, it displays all the waypoints, but for some sections it displays only about 1/3 of the route (for example, WE 1 and 4) while for others it displays the entire route (WE 2 and 3)?
Not really. I can only take a guess.

The original GPX file from ACA was created with a very different purpose in mind using Garmin software to use on (mostly Garmin) GPS devices. It has much more data than a basic KML file would contain. It seems that Google Earth struggled in converting the GPX file into the KML format it needs.

Tracks, meanwhile, are a simpler format that maps more closely to KML. That seems to have done the trick.

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Re: ACA GPS files on Google Earth problem
« on: December 03, 2013, 09:09:01 am »
I'm trying to get maps with elevation profiles of some ACA routes.
Your best bet is to use the paper maps published by ACA. They include an elevation profile.

First I tried using the ACA GPS files.
This is one  way to get a general idea about the elevation profile. Once you have the GPX file, load it onto your favorite web site tool such as Ride with GPS or GPSies. Both sites will show you the elevation profile and total elevation gain.

The accuracy of elevation data generated on web sites is frequently disputed and vary greatly by web site. I have seen it vary by 50% when calculating the elevation gain. Nevertheless, the profile can give you a general idea about the route.

With Section 2, it seemed to map the whole route and give an elevation profile, but the distance it shows is only 300 miles, much less than the ACA says it is.
This is expected. The GPX file posted on the ACA web site (at the time of this post) is a general representation of the route. It has a series of route points that could be > 10km apart, connected by a straight line, instead of exactly following the route. Therefore, the straight line is expected to be shorter than the meandering actual road.

I struggled with the Edge 810 for a few months and finally decided to give up. I replaced it with the 510 and never looked back.

I found the 510 superior to the 810 as follows:
  • Sensitive (GPS + GLONASS)
  • Very simple to operate without the worries about routing—just use tracks
  • Reliable (all works as expected)
  • Small package (tiny compared to others)
  • Long battery life (I can run it for almost two full days without a charge)
These are in addition to the standard functions in 810 & 510 for recording all trip data (laps for multiple trip sections, fitness data, HR, cadence, temperature, grade, etc), wireless phone connectivity (for Live Tracking, download routes from Garmin Connect, and upload activities to Garmin Connect).

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Re: Newb asking for some GPS advice. Please
« on: September 11, 2013, 09:04:41 am »
The new Garmin Edge Touring (uses OpenStreetMap for basemap and routing) might be a contender, too.
Indeed. It is available for pre-order. The basic unit without heart-rate support is $249. The Plus unit with heart-rate support is $299.

Note that all of the mapping units listed above also use OpenStreetMap for basemap and routing. Instructions and test results are at:

GPS & Digital Data Discussion / Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« on: September 09, 2013, 09:47:21 pm »
I'm wondering if/how the new Garmin Edge Touring allows for updates of its underlying OpenStreetMap (OSM) data.
I do not believe this is clear just yet. I have not seen any reference from Garmin to indicate the availability and method for updates.

If updates are available, they will be through Garmin's map update page. The current tool for updating maps on the Edge series is Garmin Express.

Meanwhile, the unit itself accepts SD cards that you can load with new and custom maps.

To load the latest OSM maps on the Touring unit or any other unit for that matter, take a look at these two references:

BTW, I'm an owner of more than one Garmin GPS device, and I REALLY do prefer the much-greener NiMH (rechargeable via my solar panels) AA batteries.  If a device doesn't use AAs (and NiMHs well), I might not buy it, and I'm not alone!
The unit has built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery accordingly to the product specifications page. This is the same for all the Edge series units.

Can you elaborate on your experience with solar panels in this other discussion: Solar Panel - Yea or Nay?? The general feedback was "iffy" at best.

Here are a few Garmin gadgets that do it all (or most).

Note that all these devices take some time to get used to. There is at times a steep learning curve for setting them up for use, creating tracks, managing tracks, and navigating while on the road.

Once you learn how to use them though, they can be one of your best friends on the road. They just need patience, a few phone calls to Garmin support, and trials in your local neighborhood.

Here are the options:

ModelMSRP (you can often find lower prices in retail stores and online)Map in backgroundHeart rate (belt purchased separately)NavigationComments
Edge 810$499YesYesYes:
  • Turn-by-turn navigation with proper map installed.
  • Create new routes or destinations on the unit.
  • Otherwise, navigate without a map similar to Edge 510 below
This is the latest GPS cum bicycle computer cum navigation machine. It should be fantastic when it works. Earlier releases of the firmware on the unit had many defects. The unit was practically not usable. I think they fixed many of the issues by now.
Edge 510$329NoYesYes. There are a couple of options:
  • Follow the route as displayed on the screen on blank background, prone to error without street map
  • With advanced options, the route file can contain turn-by-turn navigation options
This is my current favorite. I navigate with it on new routes all the time with no trouble. Very easy to use. Very stable. Many advanced features.
eTrex 30$299YesYesYes, similar navigation to the Edge 810.This is one solid GPS, practically indestructible, very long battery life, AA batteries can be replaced easily, very easy and simple to operate.
eTrex 10$109NoNoYes, similar navigation to the Edge 510.Similar to eTrex 30 with fewer functions and features, but very usable.

Routes / Re: Edinburgh, UK route advice?
« on: August 27, 2013, 12:36:24 pm »
Another resource to check is the Cyclists' Touring Club (CTC) in the UK and their forum.

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