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  1. #1
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    Creative GPS mounting solutions

    I have a Garmin Map 60 CSx. I bought it partly for hiking/exploring and partly to get distance and elevation data on my rides, but I have yet to use it for mtb because I'm a bit worried about ruining it in a crash. Since I don't feel comfortable mounting it on the bars, I'm trying to think of other alternatives (ones that don't mean throwing it in the Camelbak I rarely use).

    One idea I've had is to modify an old water bottle so that it becomes a sort of GPS case I can slip into my bottle cage. The antenna would still be exposed, but the rest of the body would be protected by foam and the plastic shell of the water bottle. I'm not sure how well this would work. Anyone ever try this or something like it before? If not, what are some creative ways to carry the GPS?

  2. #2
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    I have a Vista HCx that I just carry on my left camelback strap. I have the little carry case for it with the belt hook so I just slide it on. I have a carabiner attatched to the lanyard and attach that to one of the "D" rings for extra security but haven't had the gps work it's way loose yet. I know the 60 is a bit bigger...not sure how much or how it would work. It does seem like a protected location in case of a crash, but very accessible when you want to stop and take a look where you are.
    I'm looking forward to regretting this.......

  3. #3
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    You really shouldn't discount the bar mount. You can use your GPS as a navigational aid if you are on unfamiliar trails. We are heading to Utah next week and will be use it to help with the terrain and trails.

    I never liked the way the bar mount kept the unit exposed either. I modified my GPS Map60 CS bar mount to fit on my stem. It gives a lot more protection. I have not yet had it come off even after one nasty OTB, superman moment.

    Check this post for some ideas 60 CSx Handlebar Mount?
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  4. #4
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    My #1 cause for wrecks is hitting trees. I cannot avoid them. Usually my handlebar gets snagged as I try to weave a little two closely around a bend or avoiding other trees. My bike then catapults off to who knows where (usually into another tree). The Map 60's antenna looks like something that's just waiting to get snagged. It's a pretty rugged unit overall, but I would not be able (allowed) to replace it if broken.

    This doesn't count as a viable option...

  5. #5
    NEPMCPMBA President
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    I use a 60csx on the cheap garmin handlebar mount. I've been in many, many wrecks and the thing keeps on ticking. I tried the water bottle mount trick (and it works), but you lose the most important feature of the 60csx, which is the mapping capability. If you just want to record rides, a 305 is your best bet. Small and stem mounted.

    BTW, no need to keep the antenna exposed if placing the unit in a water bottle... it'll still pick up a damn near perfect signal.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnnyspoke
    I have a Vista HCx that I just carry on my left camelback strap. I have the little carry case for it with the belt hook so I just slide it on. I have a carabiner attatched to the lanyard and attach that to one of the "D" rings for extra security but haven't had the gps work it's way loose yet. I know the 60 is a bit bigger...not sure how much or how it would work. It does seem like a protected location in case of a crash, but very accessible when you want to stop and take a look where you are.

    Same safe place I normally keep the digital camera. Been through a few good wipeouts and never a problem. As long as you're not concerned with constantly viewing your location, that's probably the safest and most convenient place to keep your gps unit or other expensive trail electronics.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by RoyDean
    I use a 60csx on the cheap garmin handlebar mount. I've been in many, many wrecks and the thing keeps on ticking.
    Cool, I just picked up the Garmin mount for mine. I must've missed this part of the forum so I didn't do any research before I bought it, but good to know it works. I think the 60csx would hold up pretty well in a crash anyway. That's why I bought it. Lot's of good info out there about how it came out clean in many wrecks.

  8. #8
    saddlemeat
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmpski_1
    Cool, I just picked up the Garmin mount for mine. I must've missed this part of the forum so I didn't do any research before I bought it, but good to know it works. I think the 60csx would hold up pretty well in a crash anyway. That's why I bought it. Lot's of good info out there about how it came out clean in many wrecks.
    I agree that the bar mount is the way to go. although I don't understand why Garmin doesn't make an optional stem mount for the etrex models. Seems like they could just combine the lower half of the edge series stem mount with the upper half of the etrex series mount.

    Must be a lot of fog in the Garmin corporate tower.

    My favorite mounting option (just get a longer screw) :
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    A Useful Bear is a handy thing.

  9. #9
    Lev
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    Does anyone here ride with their 60csx in their pack? I'm not going to ride with it on the handlebar. Trails around here are way too rocky, and I just don't want it there. I have a Dakine Nomad and was thinking of throwing it in the net, so it's not completely covered. Just curious what others are doing...

  10. #10
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    Before I mounted mine to the bars, I rode with it in the pack. It worked fine. I kept in in a zippered outer compartment of the bag that was not mesh and I never had an issue with reception.

    The reason I moved mine to the bars is for navigation. It became too big of a pain to stop, open up the pack, and see if I was on track every time I was unsure of the trail.

    If you are only using 60CSx for bread crumbing then you will have no issues.

    P.S. There is no such thing as a "too rocky of a trail". It was designed for rough use. Mine has survived countless 3-4 drops, babyheads, slickrock, and a couple of very nice OTB, superman moments, all without issue. But do what you feel is right.
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  11. #11
    Lev
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    Thanks, Bankerboy. That's good to know. I suppose I might try the handlebar thing later in time. For right now, I'm more interested in the trail/elevation recording features. The trails that I ride are *usually* easily navigated; that varies though as I venture further off.

    You're probably right that there is no trail too rocky, but I'm just not that excited to add a bulky electronic gizmo to my handlebars. Apparently other people have tried it and liked it. Guess we'll see

  12. #12
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    Here's mine. A trimmed Garmin mount to put my GPS on the stem. Very easy.
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  13. #13
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    Very nice. I used the exact same setup. It remains in the upright position even in the roughest of trails. Haven't had it come off yet after 2+ years on the stem.

    If anybody wants the plans, they are in a link in a post above.
    Apathy will get you exactly what you deserve

  14. #14
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    +1 for riding with it in my backpack. I plan on mounting it on the stem one of these days...

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus
    My #1 cause for wrecks is hitting trees. I cannot avoid them. Usually my handlebar gets snagged as I try to weave a little two closely around a bend or avoiding other trees. My bike then catapults off to who knows where (usually into another tree). The Map 60's antenna looks like something that's just waiting to get snagged. It's a pretty rugged unit overall, but I would not be able (allowed) to replace it if broken.

    This doesn't count as a viable option...

    that's got ghetto written all over it ...

  16. #16
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    I also did the same dremel stem mount today. Works great. Thanks for the awesome tutorial! I'll be trying it out tomorrow!

  17. #17
    PCC
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    You folks should try a little experiment with your GPS. I once left my Garmin Edge 305 on and recording as I drove home with the bike in the trunk of my car. Much to my surprise, the GPS recorded the entire trip! If it can do that, while encapsulated within a steel box, I have no doubt that it will record my ride while it is in my pocket, in my hydration pack, in a pannier, etc. None of those options allows me to use the 305 as a computer or GPS unit, though.

  18. #18
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    Picked up a 60CSx for $150 a couple weeks back!

    So, had to make 2 stem mounts over the weekend, one for the trail bike and one for the 'road' mountain bike. Really needed to do this anyway to allow the gps and mount for my riding light to both fit up front, otherwise not enough space and the light mount was too high and kept the gps cradle from seating into the mount.

    Did have to sand down the top of the extra mount that I bought. It was too high and made it extremely tough to get the cradle to slide on and off of the rail mount. But, a little off the top and it's just perfect now!

    Glad this post got started. Sometimes you just need that spark.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by DesertDog
    Picked up a 60CSx for $150 a couple weeks back!.
    Where'd you get it? I got mine for $160 back at the beginning of the year on Amazon.

  20. #20
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    You might be surprised how strong those Garmin's are. I was running and holding my etrec in my hand when I stubbed my toe. I went straight down face first. My hand went up to break the fall and the Garmin swung on my wrist. It hit the asphalt hard. The case was scratched but it still worked fine. I just turned it on again.

    That Garmin is now mounted on my handlebars and I really don't worry too much. Of course the thing is about 6 years old and only cost $125 new.

  21. #21
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    ... and if we just ...

    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus
    Where'd you get it? I got mine for $160 back at the beginning of the year on Amazon.
    Ok, so it wasn't $150 retail.

    I lucked out and found someone local selling it on Craigslist. Went to Flagstaff and Prescott, AZ for 5 days. Came back on a Tuesday and saw the listing from Sunday. Went to work on Wednesday and figured I'd see if he still had it, thinking it would be gone. The guy reposted the ad about a half-hour before I called. Still had it, so, went to the ATM after work, then went to get it. Had everything with it, except for the Trip and Waypoint Manager software, which I reallly didn't care about anyway. The firmware was older, but I upgraded to the system 3.9 and GPS chipset 3.5 firmwares.

    Great device and my first GPS. Even works well for me when driving. Very smooth display even when doing 70 down I-15! Need to set up a driving route and try out the Highway app (think that is the name; gives a 3D-like screen you would see on a Nuvi or similar automotive unit).

    For satellite tracking, I normally lock on to 10, maybe 11. Actually had 12 locks the other day. Even indoors at the computer or at work in the warehouse I can get and keep a lock on at least 6 or 7.

    No problems with drift with this thing either. When I look at the overlay map I've started for all my road routes, the common segments are right on top of each other. Pretty cool too when you can look at a track and see details like where you were on a sidewalk for a bit, then made the jump off to the edge of the road!

    Quite impressed and happy with the purchase. Looking forward to taking it to the Utah high-country in a couple weeks!

    Ride On!

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by DesertDog
    Ok, so it wasn't $150 retail.

    I lucked out and found someone local selling it on Craigslist. Went to Flagstaff and Prescott, AZ for 5 days. Came back on a Tuesday and saw the listing from Sunday. Went to work on Wednesday and figured I'd see if he still had it, thinking it would be gone. The guy reposted the ad about a half-hour before I called. Still had it, so, went to the ATM after work, then went to get it. Had everything with it, except for the Trip and Waypoint Manager software, which I reallly didn't care about anyway. The firmware was older, but I upgraded to the system 3.9 and GPS chipset 3.5 firmwares.

    Great device and my first GPS. Even works well for me when driving. Very smooth display even when doing 70 down I-15! Need to set up a driving route and try out the Highway app (think that is the name; gives a 3D-like screen you would see on a Nuvi or similar automotive unit).

    For satellite tracking, I normally lock on to 10, maybe 11. Actually had 12 locks the other day. Even indoors at the computer or at work in the warehouse I can get and keep a lock on at least 6 or 7.

    No problems with drift with this thing either. When I look at the overlay map I've started for all my road routes, the common segments are right on top of each other. Pretty cool too when you can look at a track and see details like where you were on a sidewalk for a bit, then made the jump off to the edge of the road!

    Quite impressed and happy with the purchase. Looking forward to taking it to the Utah high-country in a couple weeks!

    Ride On!
    It's a great unit. I've been kicking myself for not picking up two of them when I had the chance (it would have made a great gift for my dad). I was hoping maybe you had found another good online deal.

  23. #23
    trail rat
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    Quote Originally Posted by DesertDog
    No problems with drift with this thing either. When I look at the overlay map I've started for all my road routes, the common segments are right on top of each other. Pretty cool too when you can look at a track and see details like where you were on a sidewalk for a bit, then made the jump off to the edge of the road!
    Nothing quite like the quad helix antenna that the 60CSx has, huh, compared to the flat panel antenna in the Edge units, there is nothing out there with better satellite resolution.
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  24. #24
    JEA
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  25. #25
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    Nice conversions.

    I just bought the handlebar mount for my Rhino 120 the other day after seeing this thread. I took it for a ride Sunday and really liked having it there instead of clipped to my shorts or pack. I'm not sure if I'm gonna bother with the stem conversion or not.

    Did you guys mainly do the conversion because it wouldn't fit on your bars or just like the lower profile/centered look better?

    EDIT: Ha, got my new bike back fromt he shop yesterday and went to put the mount on. Of course it doesn't fit next to the stem. Looks like I either have to put it way off to the side or do the conversion myself! I guess my old bike just had skinny bars.....
    Last edited by cobi; 07-15-2009 at 09:29 AM.

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