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View Full Version : What do i need??


silver
17th October 2009, 08:56 PM
For my trip next year i was thinking about getting a GPS for safety reasons as i will more than likely be travelling alone for a long,long time.
I know nothing much about them and as i will be in the NT,WA and FNQLD outback, and hopefully, many more lonely places, what exactly do i need??
I gather just going out and getting a TomTom from Harvey Norman is not the go.
I will need surburban and outback directions.:rolleyes::question:

Barry
17th October 2009, 10:52 PM
Hi Silver,

I've been working through similar issues on a tighter time frame (end of the month!) as you will see from my posts in the threads near the top of this category.
There seem to be 4 basic options:


Apsilon's solution (recent posts in 'Carputers' thread.) Netbook running Hema maps (& Oziexplore). (Requires a GPS locator as well).
Eden's solution 'netbox' and seperate touch screen, also running Hema & Oziexplore. (Also requires a seperate GPS locator)
'Hack' a Navman to run Hema Maps. See my recent Navman thread and link to a thread about 'how to' on the pajero site.. (Don't know if it will work with the latest series.)
Buy a 'Hema Navigator'.
'Mio' might also be a possibility. (The Navman is apparently now a re-branded Navman)

I think I'll go the 1st option. Advantages are:


Much bigger screen than Hema, Navman, etc.http://www.offroadsubarus.com/images/icons/icon7.gif
Small enough to keep under the seat when not in use.http://www.offroadsubarus.com/images/icons/icon7.gif
Nothing to 'hack' (can = 'break'!http://www.offroadsubarus.com/images/icons/icon9.gif)
Nothing to 'put together', other than to connect the GPS (no separate screen like Eden)http://www.offroadsubarus.com/images/icons/icon7.gif
No 'touch screen' hassles. (A potential problem with Navman, etc)http://www.offroadsubarus.com/images/icons/icon7.gif
Computer can be used when out of car.http://www.offroadsubarus.com/images/icons/icon7.gif
Could even use with wi-fi hot spots to post picks when on the road.http://www.offroadsubarus.com/images/icons/icon12.gif


Cost difference:
Netbook: $450 + GPS $100.
Maps: Purchase as needed / from friends

Hema Navigator: $990 (inc. maps)
Mio Moov 370: $549
Navman MY50T: (4.7" screen) $324 - $399
Netbook: (10" screen!) $450 + GPS $100.

Maps: Purchase as needed / from friends
Netbook is cost effective IMHO.

Hope this is of help to you and others like me, who are starting out on this path.

Barry
17th October 2009, 11:04 PM
For my trip next year i was thinking about getting a GPS for safety reasons as i will more than likely be travelling alone for a long,long time.
I know nothing much about them and as i will be in the NT,WA and FNQLD outback, and hopefully, many more lonely places, what exactly do i need??
I gather just going out and getting a TomTom from Harvey Norman is not the go.
I will need surburban and outback directions.:rolleyes::question:

If travelling alone in remote areas my first priority would be a PLB ('EPIRB').

Map reading skills, keeping track of distance travelled, compass and good maps will keep you on course.

If something breaks that can't be fixed / you are injured a PLB will save your life. This is something a GPS can't do.

apsilon
18th October 2009, 12:18 AM
Totally agree about having and knowing how to use a map and compass. Technology can fail, usually at the most inopportune time so having a basic level of knowledge on how to work without technology is a must for travelling alone IMO.

I did a solo walk around Kosciouszko NP earlier in the year and while I had a GPS with me, it was the compass and paper topo map that I used exclusively for navigation.

Hiring an EPIRB is a great idea for longer trips. There's something called SPOT which I haven't looked into in detail yet but looks like it could be a good idea for a solo traveller.

Barry
18th October 2009, 01:12 AM
Totally agree about having and knowing how to use a map and compass. Technology can fail, usually at the most inopportune time so having a basic level of knowledge on how to work without technology is a must for travelling alone IMO.

I did a solo walk around Kosciouszko NP earlier in the year and while I had a GPS with me, it was the compass and paper topo map that I used exclusively for navigation.

Hiring an EPIRB is a great idea for longer trips. There's something called SPOT which I haven't looked into in detail yet but looks like it could be a good idea for a solo traveller.

Here is the link to the URL for the spot device.
http://international.findmespot.com/
I am thinking of getting one. It allows you to send messages to family etc en-route, not just 'set it off' once you are in trouble.

silver
18th October 2009, 04:07 AM
Spot looks interesting.
I was thinking about taking an EPIRB.I will check out the prices.
Also will have a laptop so this might be the go with a lower spec TomTom for the times i am in suburbia.
Where do you fit the GPS receiver?
I am not in a hurry for anything as i don't intend to leave until late next year but i guess it will go quick.
I have no idea how to use a compass or map and not sure even where i could learn up here but i will look into it.
This looks Ok and should be around $400-425.
http://www.gme.net.au/products/emergency-beacons/epirbs/MT400

apsilon
18th October 2009, 04:53 AM
You can hire EPIRB style devices which might be a good alternative to buying.

As for the compass if you're sticking to roads it's a little less important as roads almost always go somewhere. Worst case it dead ends and you turn around and go back but a paper road map is always a good idea just in case.

Off track a compass becomes essential IMO. It's surprisingly easy to get turned around and once you experience it you can understand how people get lost simply by walking 10m off track. In my case I had the good sense and experience to stop and think through where I had come from and how. I'd only walked 20m from camp to collect water so didn't take my compass. Filtered my water, stood up and turned around to go back and :confused: Alone, no mobile coverage and knowing there was almost certainly no one else for a hundred km and not knowing how to get back to your camp, with a storm approaching in sub zero temps is a bad feeling.

My first thought was it was "that way" but I stopped and thought it through before just heading off and realised my first thought was wrong and it was actually "over there". If I'd just headed off in the direction I thought it was I would've been stuffed.

Even on the way out I started doubting my compass as I expected to have hit the trail again by a certain time and hadn't. Considered altering course but checked both my compasses and they both read the same so stuck with it. Less than 10min later I was back on the trail.

Barry
18th October 2009, 05:39 AM
Spot looks interesting.
I was thinking about taking an EPIRB.I will check out the prices.
Also will have a laptop so this might be the go with a lower spec TomTom for the times i am in suburbia.
Where do you fit the GPS receiver?
I am not in a hurry for anything as i don't intend to leave until late next year but i guess it will go quick.
I have no idea how to use a compass or map and not sure even where i could learn up here but i will look into it.
This looks Ok and should be around $400-425.
http://www.gme.net.au/products/emergency-beacons/epirbs/MT400

The terminology is a bit confusing. What most car users call an 'EPIRB' is actually a PLB (Personal Location Beacon). EPIRBS are designed for water based activities.

Here is the link on the above page to the equivalent PLB. http://www.gme.net.au/products/emergency-beacons/plbs/MT410
These are probably the best on the market at the moment, although there are others that should finally be on the market before Christmas which are even better 'spec'ed'. (But too late for my trip.)

The thing with a PLB is that it is a 'last resort only' use thing. The 'Spot', while also a 'PLB' also will let you send messages to up to 10 pre-set numbers, post your location to 10 google maps, etc. as your trip progresses.

In your circumstances (lengthy weeks / months solo trip much of it outside mobile phone / computer coverage) this may be really useful. There are some on-going costs for these additional 'Spot' services, but these may be worth it for 'solos' or those with 'worriers' at home.

As to map reading skills, I'm sure that there would be a local walking / 4WD club or even Scouts who run courses. I'm sure that Google / wikipedia would quickly get you the basics.

silver
18th October 2009, 10:15 PM
Thanks, i did wonder about them being for marine use and this one looks more the go. I will be taking a tinny with me and guess this will cause no problems.
As far as a GPS goes i really need something simple/uncomplicated as i hate complications and am not that tech savy. How about this??
http://www.vms4x4.com/product-portable_gps-touring_500
Seems nice and easy to me.
I would prefer to keep a laptop just as a laptop. My poor brain can't cope with some of this tech stuff.:biggrin:

Barry
18th October 2009, 11:01 PM
Haven't come across this GPS, certainly looks good. As it is being sold by some 'serious' 4WD retailers hopefully it would be excellent.
Would be interested to know about the price.

BTW, can understand your reticence about some of the Tech stuff, but it really isn't that hard.

I'm 53, can't type, but can read, use the net and "follow the dots" on other peoples 'how to' threads. (I reccon anyone using these threads can probably do likewise!:lildevil:)

If you can afford both, or want a GPS running full time, then fine.
However you can treat GPS as 'just another program' on a Net Book if you want. :cool:
Nothing to 'hack' just load the programs and maps from disc / USB (read other threads in GPS forum for cost-effective sources) and ask for help if you need it.
I'd encourage those who are looking for a cost effective 'best of both worlds' to at least think about this. It isn't really too hard, and lots of mates on here and other sites to help if you get stuck.

In the end though we each skin the cat our own way, but it is nice to hear of the range of possibilities, and to read about why we each choose the one we do.

I know that, because of advice and info from members like eden and apsilon, I'm going with something completely different to what I was initially going to do.:)

silver
19th October 2009, 01:32 AM
I will be checking out the GPS on Friday and will report back.
I think this could be the way to go for me. Just need to see how good it is. A least if i lose/have stolen the laptop i will still have the GPS and vv.
I liked the idea of the SD cards also.
Like a few things, eg i am still tosing up using the raised king springs or the other STD height 25% heavier ones from Industrial Springs, i have time on my side and a wealth of info from this site to consider.
As an aside..the STD height 25% heavier springs are winning the battle at the moment. I think they will create less stress on the suspension as everything will be in it's normal place and the different profile tyres will give me a small lift anyway.

silver
25th October 2009, 09:03 PM
I went to the ARB store at Port Macquarie to have a browse around and try and get some GPS info. His (overbearing) opionion was go the new Hemma which has just been released. At $990 i don't think i can justify it.
I talked to my mate who goes up the Gulf regularly and he uses a TomTom One and said that it worked fine.
Considering what i THINK is the overall plan of my trip maybe a higher spec TomTom could be the go. Combined with some maps i reckon it would cover most bases.

Barry
25th October 2009, 10:04 PM
Price probably includes maps, but it is HEAPS expensive.

What maps is your mate using on the Tom Tom?

silver
25th October 2009, 10:27 PM
Just how it came i reckon. Don't think he got anything extra/different.
We used a STD top of the range TomTom for our Tassie trip and it was pretty good.

apsilon
25th October 2009, 11:38 PM
The HEMA does include the maps I believe and for a dual use GPS (on and offroad) the price isn't too bad. The offroad map collection is $180 on it's own.

Perhaps have a look at gpsoz.com.au They have the Hema and VMS and can probably give you some idea of how the two compare and they have lots of other options as well.

Barry
26th October 2009, 02:45 AM
The HEMA does include the maps I believe and for a dual use GPS (on and offroad) the price isn't too bad. The offroad map collection is $180 on it's own.

Perhaps have a look at gpsoz.com.au They have the Hema and VMS and can probably give you some idea of how the two compare and they have lots of other options as well.

But that is still $810 for the unit.

By contrast Navman ( with the 'Mio' hack to run maps) or a Netbook would be $300 - $400 cheaper.

I guess that is the price for 'plug and play' convenience.

mr turbo
26th October 2009, 07:29 AM
I went to the ARB store at Port Macquarie to have a browse around and try and get some GPS info. His (overbearing) opionion was go the new Hemma which has just been released. At $990 i don't think i can justify it.
That price is way too high, way, way too high.
Or is there another version of the Hema that has just been released ? (IE 2 Types)
Why I say that is because gpsoz is selling the Hema for $690 & have been selling it for that price for the last couple of months or so.
Try Here (http://www.gpsoz.com.au/hema/index.htm)


Regards
Mr Turbo

silver
26th October 2009, 08:51 AM
This is the new beefed up just released model. I'm not going to pay that much. Simply not worth it for me.
Just checked out your link. Is that an EXTRA $339 for a map of EACH state????