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Garmin 500 - mapping

dinyulldinyull Posts: 2,964
edited July 2016 in Road general
I know this has probably been asked over and over again on here, but here goes.

I'm going to Mallorca in Sept, but only have 1 day for the bike. I have the route planned in my head, but because I've never been before and will be riding alone I'd like the insurance of directions to try and avoid getting lost.

Mapping is something I have very little need for, aside from the occasional holiday. So I'm reluctant to spend too much on something I will very rarely use.

Would the bread crumb mapping on a 500 be sufficient to guide me in a foreign country?

I have seen refurbished 500 units on Wiggle for under £90 and I already have £45 in vouchers to use there. To move up to a 520/800 with mapping is going to be another £100.

Posts

  • luv2rideluv2ride Posts: 2,362
    Dinyull wrote:
    I know this has probably been asked over and over again on here, but here goes.

    I'm going to Mallorca in Sept, but only have 1 day for the bike. I have the route planned in my head, but because I've never been before and will be riding alone I'd like the insurance of directions to try and avoid getting lost.

    Mapping is something I have very little need for, aside from the occasional holiday. So I'm reluctant to spend too much on something I will very rarely use.

    Would the bread crumb mapping on a 500 be sufficient to guide me in a foreign country?

    I have seen refurbished 500 units on Wiggle for under £90 and I already have £45 in vouchers to use there. To move up to a 520/800 with mapping is going to be another £100.

    When I was last in Mallorca (couple of years ago mind) there was a small hire place in Pollensa town that I'm sure also hired out GPS units - if you're hiring a bike whilst there, why not see if they can also supply either a GPS or a decent map? I know frequent stops aren't necessarily ideal, I.e. when checking a map, but I used one to clarify my intended route the night before, then taped a list of the junctions/towns on the top tube to help with my appallingly bad short-term memory :oops:
    Scott Solace 10 disc - Kinesis Crosslight Pro6 disc - Scott CR1 SL - Pinnacle Arkose X 650b - Pinnacle Arkose 1x11 "monster cross" - Specialized Singlecross...& an Ernie Ball Musicman Stingray 4 string...
  • kingstongrahamkingstongraham Posts: 17,772
    Dinyull wrote:
    I know this has probably been asked over and over again on here, but here goes.

    I'm going to Mallorca in Sept, but only have 1 day for the bike. I have the route planned in my head, but because I've never been before and will be riding alone I'd like the insurance of directions to try and avoid getting lost.

    Mapping is something I have very little need for, aside from the occasional holiday. So I'm reluctant to spend too much on something I will very rarely use.

    Would the bread crumb mapping on a 500 be sufficient to guide me in a foreign country?

    I have seen refurbished 500 units on Wiggle for under £90 and I already have £45 in vouchers to use there. To move up to a 520/800 with mapping is going to be another £100.

    It's fine - it's all I use, both in this country and abroad. Also useful on descents when it gives you an idea whether what's approaching is a hairpin or not.
  • Sutton_RiderSutton_Rider Posts: 480
    I had a 500 and found the breadcrumb route was total rubbish, dropping out and freezing (just when I needed it). Also breadcrumb routes are not the easiest to follow. I now use an 800 and found that to be much better, not totally without is issues. If you want a GPS don't waist your money on a 500. You can pick up an 800 for around the £100 mark.
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  • bigglosfanbigglosfan Posts: 15
    I've found the 500 mapping good enough - especially when I've had a rough idea of where I'm going. I always carry a phone with the route on strava too though as a backup should I go very wrong.
  • cgfw201cgfw201 Posts: 669
    It's ok as long as you don't go off route. If you do it's basically impossible to find it again without consulting a map/phone.
  • timothywtimothyw Posts: 2,482
    I've got an Edge 500 and although it is just about usable the breadcrumb trail is very sketchy - if you leave it on auto zoom mode you'll find that it disappears from the screen at inopportune times - overall it's quite frustrating, so most of time if I do need to navigate on a ride I'll also take my Edge 200 which has no such issues - although it's functionality is worse it appears to have a better processor and so is less prone to lagging/disappearing trails.

    In short, if I were you I'd be looking to see if my local Aldi still has any Edge 25 units cheap - unless you know that you need the longer battery life that is probably a better bet.
  • luv2rideluv2ride Posts: 2,362
    Wheelies are doing the Mio 305 for £130 'ish, quite a saving on RRP.
    http://www.wheelies.co.uk/p70416/Mio-Cy ... puter.aspx
    ANT+ sensor compatible and has the "surprise me" route generator function. Always thought that would be useful when somewhere unfamiliar. Turn by turn directions too...
    Scott Solace 10 disc - Kinesis Crosslight Pro6 disc - Scott CR1 SL - Pinnacle Arkose X 650b - Pinnacle Arkose 1x11 "monster cross" - Specialized Singlecross...& an Ernie Ball Musicman Stingray 4 string...
  • stevie63stevie63 Posts: 481
    edited June 2016
    I had a mio 305 computer. It was a nightmare. It would crash whenever using it to follow a route. The surprise me function would send you down unpaved bridle ways even if you had main roads as your preference. And worst of all it just died after about 14 months never to work again.

    As well as that mio support is terrible taking months to issue new firmware updates for bug fixes. I couldn't recommend it unfortunately.
  • thomasmorristhomasmorris Posts: 373
    The breadcrumb trails is really designed as a training tool, to race a virtual partner, rather than for navigation. If you base your expectations on that, then you'll be pleasantly surprised how useful it can be, rather than disappointed about how rubbish it is for navigation.

    Having said that, it is possible to use it as an aid if you have a specific route you have created (strava, ridewithgps etc.). You can view the breadcrumb trail on the screen, and for many routes this will be enough. The key to being successful , and I can't stress this enough, is to turn OFF auto zoom. If you leave auto zoom on, every time you slow down, it will re-'draw' the route, which takes several seconds, leaving you with a blank screen. Unfortunately, slowing down and speeding up at multiple junctions through a town will leave the device constantly re-drawing as it auto zooms, just at the time you want to see the trail!

    If you leave auto-zoom off, you can glance down at the breadcrumb trail, and roughly work out which turnings to take. every now and then it'll be a judgement call on which exit at a roundabout to take, and you'll get it wrong. You'll get a 'off course' message and beep straight away, at which point you can turn back and correct yourself.

    To help at complicated junctions, or if you don't like having the breadcrumb trail always on display, you can add waypoint notes. These will flash up with extra information. However, you'll need http://www.ridewithgps.com (or similar) to create them. Ridewithgps adds notes automatically at each junction, but you really need the notes to flash up before the junction. In which case you'll either need to pay a subscription or add the waypoints manually. This is time consuming (30min-1 hr). To make things a little more complication waypoint notes vanish on courses longer than 100k, so you'll need t split longer routes.

    With the waypoint notes and breadcrumb trail auto zoom turned off, you've got a pretty effective route following tool... which is good, because if you go off route the 500 is of no use. You do get a 'off course' message flash up, and if you've gone off route by accident, it's best to re-trace your steps immediately until the route is found. If you've gone off route, so you can explore a local town, or try a different road, or been diverted for road works or a one way system, then the 500 is not going to help you. This is the time to get your smartphone out and hope you have 3G signal, or buy a proper map and routing device.

    I use my 500 for carrying out training sessions and logging where I've been. I can count on one hand the amount of times per year I'm on totally new roads. As it happens pretty rarely, I'm happy to invest a bit of time adding waypoints the evening before. I then rely on the waypoint notes, only switching to the breadcrumb trail i towns. I also found the breadcrumb trail useful in mallorca on long descents to give an idea of the turns coming up. It's a pleasant surprise my training computer allows me to do this.

    If I did regular exploring and touring, I'd get annoyed having to spend the time adding my own turn by turn instructions, having to split routes, and not being able to take detours on the fly. In which case I'd buy a mapping device.
  • drlodgedrlodge Posts: 4,825
    I have an Edge 800, about 4 years old now. Its probably the best bit of kit I ever bought, always use the mapping functionality and you can get them very cheaply now.
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  • dinyulldinyull Posts: 2,964
    drlodge wrote:
    I have an Edge 800, about 4 years old now. Its probably the best bit of kit I ever bought, always use the mapping functionality and you can get them very cheaply now.

    Where? Have seen the 810 for £220, but like I said in the OP I have next to no use for mapping so struggle to justify spending an extra £130 for something I might use once or twice a year.



    Going from this thread, might just be better renting a GPS unit in Mallorca.
  • BobbinogsBobbinogs Posts: 4,841
    The breadcrumb trails is really designed as a training tool, to race a virtual partner, rather than for navigation. If you base your expectations on that, then you'll be pleasantly surprised how useful it can be, rather than disappointed about how rubbish it is for navigation...

    Yepp, agree with that.

    No reason why manual routing cannot be used successfully though. I use it for 200k+ rides and don't have a problem having learned to do it through audax routecards. Google Streetmap is a great aid as key junctions can be reviewed so that, on the day, there is some familiarity and one can just breeze through them, etc.
  • I've used the breadcrumb trail on the 500 for unfamiliar routes and it's worked really well. The key for me is to add the waypoints - I use BikeHike which will add them automatically - when you save the file you can instruct the waypoint alerts to activate prior to the actual turn - I find 30 metres does the trick quite well.
  • jimmocratesjimmocrates Posts: 126
    drlodge wrote:
    I have an Edge 800, about 4 years old now. Its probably the best bit of kit I ever bought, always use the mapping functionality and you can get them very cheaply now.

    I bought a Garmin 800 in January 2013, and also think it is the best bit of cycling kit I have ever bought. It has allowed me to venture much further on unknown roads without having to stop and check google maps on my phone (both nea where I live and when I take my bike on holiday). I got it from handtec for about £240 and think it was worth every penny.

    You can't get it now, but they have the 810 for £215. Over it's lifetime, £100 extra is nothing.

    PS: I use OSM mapping, which is great and FREE
  • thomasmorristhomasmorris Posts: 373
    I use BikeHike which will add them automatically - when you save the file you can instruct the waypoint alerts to activate prior to the actual turn - I find 30 metres does the trick quite well.

    that's useful to know, I get bored manually putting the instructions in before each turn on ridewithgps.

    Although I've just got a 1000 now which we'll use for touring / exploring. I'm keeping my 500 for training and racing though.
  • de_sistide_sisti Posts: 1,203
    You can view the breadcrumb trail on the screen, and for many routes this will be enough. The key to being successful , and I can't stress this enough, is to turn OFF auto zoom. If you leave auto zoom on, every time you slow down, it will re-'draw' the route, which takes several seconds, leaving you with a blank screen.
    Do you have instructions on how to do this?
  • timothywtimothyw Posts: 2,482
    De Sisti wrote:
    You can view the breadcrumb trail on the screen, and for many routes this will be enough. The key to being successful , and I can't stress this enough, is to turn OFF auto zoom. If you leave auto zoom on, every time you slow down, it will re-'draw' the route, which takes several seconds, leaving you with a blank screen.
    Do you have instructions on how to do this?
    Press the power button while on the breadcrumb trail and a little popup appears letting you set the zoom level, set it with the buttons on the right hand side.

    Once you've done it once it remembers your settings - tricky part is finding a zoom level that shows you enough of the road ahead while still making turnings obvious.
  • dee4life2005dee4life2005 Posts: 773
    The breadcrumb trail in the Garmin 500 should(*) be good enough, but I recall there was a bug with that feature whereby it would vanish from the screen. I think it was related to the route being 50+ miles, or having covered 50+ miles of a route. Its something I never found a solution for, other than by doing shorter rides ... they've maybe fixed it in the latest firmware, I haven't checked, but it's worth noting just in case. I'd have a back-up plan if I were you.
  • ravey1981ravey1981 Posts: 1,111
    Just come back from Tenerife and used my 500 for routing. Use plotaroute.com to plan your routes, then direct upload to the garmin. It will embed turn signals into the route for you and you can set it to alert you of an upcoming turn/route point at a distance that suits you (250feet is about right). With that and the breadcrumb you really can't get lost.... I didn't anyway!
  • TiesetrotterTiesetrotter Posts: 432
    The 520 has mapping. You just load only the area you want to ride in. About £190. Neater, smaller than the 800's.
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    The 520 has mapping. You just load only the area you want to ride in. About £190. Neater, smaller than the 800's.
    Dinyull wrote:
    To move up to a 520/800 with mapping is going to be another £100.

    Unless you can point the OP to a bargain....
    Faster than a tent.......
  • dinyulldinyull Posts: 2,964
    Cheers, at least someone read my OP.

    A few on here have claimed the 800/810 is available for not much more than £100, but I'm still waiting for the links haha.
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