anybody using a gps on their bike?

14 replies to this topic
  • kconwr

Posted October 20, 2004 - 06:41 PM


hey guys
trying to decide between a gps or a trailtech type computer for my 04 wr450. i just want basic information but would like to be able to watch average speed while riding. can you do this with a trailtech computer or do you have to be stopped to see your average speed. any advantages or disadvantages to either of them? THANKS

  • YamahaSteve

Posted October 20, 2004 - 06:47 PM


I use a GPS on my bike and you pretty much have to stop to read it just becasue it vibrates and your head moves alot riding... it is nice though.

  • Indy_WR450

Posted October 20, 2004 - 06:59 PM


Ditto I carry mine in the back pack and pull it out when lost. Got to have maps with you or premarked way points.
I have a handle bar mount and power chord from my trick dualsport but I only use it when riding intermediate trails and adventure riding deep in the woods on new trails. :cry: It is vulnerable to vibration damage and crash damage with the high handle bar mounts most people use. :cry:

  • av8shunmeckaneck

Posted October 20, 2004 - 07:24 PM


I use a Garmin Etrex mounted to the handle bars. I bought the cigarette lighter attachment and McGeyvered it to the battery. I had problems using batteries in it while riding. The batteries would vibrate too much and the GPS would turn off. works great with the power cord. Im not sure how much the trialtech is but my GPS was only 180bones which is prolly close to the cost of the trailtech, but the gps keeps your from spending the night lost in the desert.

  • MrBlahh

Posted October 21, 2004 - 03:49 AM


I use both

trailtech is cheap, 60 $ for the whole setup

my etrex color was 400 $ without software, and you need that too, probably topo maps

once you have them, you wont want to give them up

there's too much tree cover here to use a GPS for speed indication

  • BIGMatt

Posted October 21, 2004 - 06:21 AM



If you just want basic info like speed, distance, avg speed, time etc... go with the trailtech, or even a nice mountain bike computer like Cat Eye for $30. Mtn bike computers are much smaller, and just as rugged and water resistant/proof as a Trailtech. The numbers are easy to read when riding too. The only down fall is that you will have to fabricate a way of mounting the magnet and sensor, and splice the sensor wire to make it longer. I like them, but they are not easy to use during enduro races when you have to do a 'reset' or milage adjustment.
I bring my GPS too, but keep it in my fanny pack.

  • Dan_Lorenze

Posted October 21, 2004 - 06:55 AM


For those having problems with batteries moving around, get a straw, fillet the straw open, then stuff the cut straw around the batteries and shove the batteries into the battery compartment to eliminate the slop. This gets rid of the vibration problem.

I do run a Garmin 12 on my handlebars when I do long rides over multiple days but for day rides the GPS doesn't always make sense. Trailtech is a great company that makes great products, the also stand behind their products 100% but I have always questioned the reliability of their computer. Maybe they've improved them over the time but I can remember a lot of guys having problems with them. You can always call Geoff at Trailtech and talk to him about it. A computer would be easier to maintain, GPS's are typically battery hogs. (mine is)


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  • SXP

Posted October 21, 2004 - 10:11 AM


Here's a post with some pics of what you are asking about



Posted October 21, 2004 - 12:03 PM


GPS is the one of the greatest things invented for dirt bikes. I will ride aimlessly into the woods on exploring missions. The GPS makes finding your way out a lot easier. I have been mind numbingly lost , running on fumes, injured rider aboard and can't waste a bunch of time/effort/gas finding the shortest way out.

I would still do a seperate speed/odo. That way you can have more map screen on the GPS. Plus you don't always want to have your GPS on for a quick shot into town.

Posted Image

P.S. If you're going to hardwire your GPS to NOT run off the AA batteries I have a good solution for you. Replace the stock 12v cigarette plug on your GPS power cable with a Sea Link plug. Then wire in the corresponding 12v female socket into the bike. It's one of the only corrosion proof 12v plug/sockets, it locks when plugged in,has a built in fuse, and seals itself off when connected. It's pricy for a plug and socket, but it saves me $5.00 in batteries every ride! Most other stuff out there is junk. These are designed for a marine environment. :cry:

  • Indy_WR450

Posted October 21, 2004 - 02:49 PM


Nice speedo and GPS set up! :cry: :cry:

  • TOP_Racing

Posted October 21, 2004 - 03:06 PM


Check for GPS and mounts, they also harden the boards to help vibration damage to the GPS unit. Best place for any GPS and bike use info.

  • Rooster426

Posted October 22, 2004 - 03:35 PM


GPS all the way, I cannot be a bigger advocate for this. Just last weekend it saved me twice. I was out in blackrock desert when a sandstorm blew up out of nowhere, I could see about 10 feet around me. If it wasn't for the GPS I could not have found my way back to camp. Plus it gives me realtime speed, altitude, has a two way radio built in.., blah blah and does tons more stuff that I'll probably never learn to use but I'll have fun trying.

  • DieselsRcool

Posted October 23, 2004 - 08:12 PM


Just ordered my Garmin 76CS. A good compliment for my TrailTech. Now I can join the ranks of the "Located & Oriented". :cry:

  • wickedsprint

Posted October 23, 2004 - 08:32 PM


A man with one GPS is always sure of where he is...a man with two gps's is never really sure of his exact location.

Write that down.

  • poodledumpster

Posted October 31, 2004 - 11:22 PM


i run with my garmen when i am exploring new zones. i broke my first garmen running a bar mount. great warranty!!!! i now store it in my roost pack mounted front side of chest protector for easy access. when i'm way up over the bars it will loose sight for a second or two. otherwise works great.


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