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Old 04-24-2015, 09:43 PM   #21
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I have a 760 and Rich, I don't understand your description. Do you have an external antenna? How would you power the Garmin if you don't plug it in? It's not an RV model, though.

Main thing I don't like is that it ignores "Avoid tolls" and is always trying to send me across the ferry to go north on 5 (Burlington or points north). Plus I would really like a "learning" GPS that could figure out if I always ignore its instruction to do something that my way is better and change the directions. Oh, and traffic 280 miles ahead of me is NOT useful. No point mentioning a traffic jam of 30 minutes if I won't be there for 5 hours.
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Old 04-25-2015, 05:09 AM   #22
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GPS for RV question

Hi Cathi,

I've only had it a few months. The only time I use the micro USB charge port is to connect to the computer to update maps or to charge it inside the house. I have not had problems with micro USB on other devices, but with this one who knows?


Hi Bobbie,

Yes you must plug it in to keep the battery up while on the road. If you look at the car cable Garmin provided, it has the cigarette plug adapter at one end and the mini USB that goes into the clip on the mount. But in between is a long skinny plastic thing about 1/2" by maybe 3-4" long. That is the antenna that picks up the traffic reports. The satellite antenna that picks up the GPS signal is inside the main body and will alway work if it can "see" the sky. But without that Garmin supplied car charger, you can't get traffic alerts. If it breaks, you must pay Garmin prices for a replacement. You cannot use a generic USB cable.

I haven't used the avoid tolls feature.

A learning feature would be great.

So far much of my driving has been outside of towns so I haven't seen the problems you report with the traffic alerts. It's sound aggravating.

This thing is definitely not perfect, but the advance planning capability is really nice. If I could only choose scenic routing I would be a happy camper! I image the Rand McNally has that too. It wouldn't nearly as useful if it doesn't have that.

Rich
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Old 04-25-2015, 08:52 AM   #23
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What happens with the traffic is that, for example, I'll have a route set to my home in Washington, and am in Portland so traffic comes on. Great, Portland has terrible traffic so it's good to see. BUT... it shows a long delay in Seattle 3-4 hours away. Traffic isn't specific to the area you are actually in; it will show traffic anywhere on your route (and change your arrival time even though when you get there the traffic problem has long since cleared- you hope.)

Hmm, will have to look at my charger cord, never noticed that. I do like the traffic feature as once or twice it has helped me avoid a long delay (when I had a choice of freeways) but unless the delay is right in front of me and long I ignore it- it usually clears before I get there.

I don't know if the Garmin will avoid non-ferry tolls as haven't really tried that.

Map updates is kind of a sore spot. When my street pilot broke I thought, okay, I've been needing new maps, anyway. There are a few sections of 99 in California that have been straightened out or made into freeways and the Garmin always started redirecting me when I hit them. Got the new 760 four years ago and it made absolutely no difference. The part of the maps that needed updating on my routes hadn't changed.

I do observe that the 760 is not as accurate as the Street Pilot I5 was. Not map-wise, but in the exact location. It will be off by a few hundred feet quite frequently.

However, all in all, I love my Garmin, and would like one that could choose scenic routes and avoid roads not recommended for trailers.
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Old 04-25-2015, 09:48 AM   #24
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Bobbie,

I can see how it dilutes the value of the traffic alerts. I have not noticed that, but I've only been using it a few months.

Is your 760 the same as mine? Mine is the 760 LTM with a 7" screen intended for RVs? Four years is four or more generations in GPS technology!

I Googled Garmin 760 and found a Garmin Nuvi 760 with a 4.3" screen. Maybe that's what you have.

Have you updated the software recently? When you update maps, they may download software updates too. Even if you don't have free map updates, software updates are always free. I mention this because a software update might solve your traffic issue.

Worth a try if you haven't updated in a while.

Rich
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Old 04-25-2015, 09:54 AM   #25
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No, mine is the Nuvi, and I don't have updates because there was (at least when I got it) no way to do it on a Mac. And I'm not going to try even if there is now as I had to activate the Audible feature on a PC and don't want to have to do that again (and just confirmed that's still the case). In fact, when I first had it both Audible and Garmin said it wouldn't work with a Mac (it does, but as I said, had to activate on a PC).

When it dies I'll look at the RV models. (Or if maps get too out of date). But I really like the Audible feature so don't want to give that up at this point. They now claim to have Mac software, so then updates would be possible.
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Old 04-25-2015, 11:40 AM   #26
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Hi Rob,

Unfortunately, it was my iPhone 6 with Google maps that took me two hours out of my way on a five hour drive. ....Apple maps might have done me right.

One other thing to consider... If you boondock, you'll go place without data services. Google maps and Apple maps both require a data connection. I have a Tom Tom app in my iPhone that works offline, but my Garmin work better than it does.

Rich
We haven't used google maps in a long time as its nowhere near the quality, efficiency and most importantly accuracy of the built in Apple Map app. Initially there was a lot of bad press on this app when it was introduced with the iPhone 5, but contrary to the reports it has served us very well with only small mistakes. We also find it far more robust in what it can accomplish with the help of Siri.

Agreed you have to have cellular service for them to work, but its rare we are completely out of range of service. Low weak signals yes, but completely out is rare and usually only for a very short period if traveling. And if we are already boondocked in a remote location, well we don't really need it then anyway given we are already at our destination.

One of the best features I like while traveling is to ask Siri what the distance is to the next location, town, city or what have you and it can do this on the fly calculating while you're driving and hands free through the truck sound system.

In summary with few exceptions given the robust capabilities of modern cell phones I just don't see much of a need for a traditional GPS anymore for road trips, unless you are up on Cedar Mesa, UT trying to find some remote ruin. Even my next door neighbor who is on the local search and rescue team seems to have his doubts too.
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Old 04-25-2015, 12:54 PM   #27
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As I mentioned in an earlier part of this thread, I have a Garmin Nuvi 3580, and update both the software & maps using a MacBookPro laptop using the Garmin Express software. As to their Mac based mapping software (Garmin BaseCamp) I feel it is just about the most infuriating & annoying software ever written.

As to using the "Avoid Tolls" feature, I wish it was a bit more adjustable. I used it to go from my home in Oswego, NY to the Ontario side of Niagara Falls (about 150 miles via NY 104) to avoid the NY Thruway, and because there is a toll on the bridge to Canada, it insisted on routing me over 500 miles to cross the border toll free. Why couldn't they do an "Avoid Toll Roads", but let you cross bridges?

Another pet peeve is there is no way to tell the Nuvi that you want to stay on a particular road. For example, if you start on a US route, for example US 11, if you pick "fastest & also avoid highways" to stay off the parallel interstate, it will route you on county, even town roads to "save time", however while those roads may have a 55 MPH speed limit, they often twist & turn enough that you can never do the limit. Why can't they add a feature that lets you stay on the road you choose?

I still use the Garmin but I do miss the Mac version of Street Atlas, my favorite mapping & driving map software. Delorme won't support the Mac any more so that possibility is long gone.

As to cell phone based map software, while Google maps & the Apple map apps require a cell connection to view the maps, there is software that downloads all the maps at installation. I've used CoPilot & once installed, you do not need a cell connection, although I prefer the Garmin software for driving.

As to hiking, I rarely use my cell phone with the exception of some Topo apps that I download the maps prior to hiking, but I do carry an old Garmin 60CSX. (Which, by the way did help finding my way back from the Fallen Roof Ruin at Cedar Mesa!)
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Old 04-26-2015, 04:37 PM   #28
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GPS for RV question

I have a Garmin and use the CoPilot app, as well as, Allstays truck and travel app. It is wise to use several sources, since no source is all inclusive. also, beware that sometimes road resurfacing renders the posted height of some low bridges inaccurate, so I try to avoid anything even close to the height of the RV.


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Old 04-29-2015, 10:05 PM   #29
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Do be careful with GPS. We used our Garmin Nuvi in Utah a few years ago running dirt roads. Be aware that they may show roads that aren't there anymore, if they were ever built. We ended up back along a cliff for about half a mile. Things may have improved, or not.
Be careful out there


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Old 04-30-2015, 12:10 AM   #30
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Do be careful with GPS. We used our Garmin Nuvi in Utah a few years ago running dirt roads. Be aware that they may show roads that aren't there anymore, if they were ever built. We ended up back along a cliff for about half a mile. Things may have improved, or not.
Be careful out there
If you have followed any of the current RS2477 controversy between the state of Utah and the federal government there are a lot of roads that Utah claims are there that never really existed.
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Old 04-30-2015, 07:04 PM   #31
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This is not news to us!

😱

We thought we would all die of coronaries even if we didn't roll down the cliff. Thank goodness our buddy drives as well backwards as forwards!

We 'thought' we were taking a dirt shortcut to a ghost town we wanted to explore. In the end we had a nice visit but never found the ghost town


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Old 01-14-2016, 07:52 AM   #32
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Buy or Not to Buy

Will the Garmin RV760 keep me off the roads that the 13Ft Scamp would not be allowed?
Or any non RV GPS just as good
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Old 01-14-2016, 08:13 AM   #33
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There should not be many situations that your tow with a 13' trailer can not handle, so any reputable GPS should be fine. What the Garmin and other "RV" models have are POI for repairs and cg's and dump locations that the conventional one may not include. Your length and height issues are minimal.
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Old 01-14-2016, 09:41 AM   #34
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Garmin all the way!

And a MAJOR tip here folks!! When choosing the type of route, ALWAYS choose "fastest" route if you're unsure where you're going.

IF you choose the "Shortest" route, that's exactly what Garmin's going to try and do..... down any side road, back road....and could be a closed road. DONT use that option!

And, another piece of sound advice for GPS users, back up Garmin's route with an exploration via Goodgle Maps and for the icing on the cake- Google Earth. I have found this to be the most valuable time spent on my trips to new territories!

Just make SURE you get one with Lifetime Maps. (Usually an "LM" version. It's VERY important you keep it updated when traveling.
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Old 01-14-2016, 12:17 PM   #35
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Hi All,

Here's a few comments about how well my Garmin 760LMT stood up and how I use it.

I still love it for the most part. I accidentally left it outside one night and it got wet. It didn't work for a few days, then it worked again. Yay!

The advancing planning feature continues to be my all time favorite! I'm planning my next trip, day by day. I use my Rand McNally Atlas to find the scenic or interesting routes. I enter this route into my Garmin using waypoints because it's rarely the faster route. Sometimes the fastest way to get exactly the route I want is to browse the map and pick a spot on the highway I want. Add that, browse the map to a find a place 20-50 miles farther along my desired route, add it, etc. Then I save and view the map to make sure it didn't do anything weird. This is a critical step because I may turn me around and route to a "better" road. If it did, I add more points until I get what I want.

When my Garmin absolutely won't let me go on a road (routes me around it over & over) I google "RV access on xxxx" and see what comes up. I'll may see that I'd be crazy to take my trailer that way usually because of narrow roads and sharp turns.

The GPS is great for telling me how long the drive will take. If it's more than 4.5 hours, I try to shorten it. I build in rest days.

And I change the route on the fly as desired.

Other useful tools:

While entering the route, I use my iPhone "Ultimate CG" app to find low cost or free places to camp (search App Store for "ultimate us public campground"). This app requires cell service so I subscribed to the website version which allows me to download the campgrounds to my Garmin using the free Garmin POI loader. When planning, I find my desired campground with the app and search the POIs on the Garmin. Since I know the name from the app, it's easy to add it to my route.

I also download POI lists for Costco, Sam's, and Tractor Supply Co.

I use Boondockers Welcome and Harvest Hosts websites (require annual fees).

I rarely have to stay at commercial RV Parks, but when all of the above fail me, I fall back to the iPhone Allstays Camp & RV app.

I rarely make reservations at State Parks, but I often check their online reservation websites to see how full they are.

NOTE: I'm often out where there is no cell service. I was not happy when my Garmin got wet and stopped working for a few days. Fortunately, I had previously installed the iPhone TomTom app (USA $25) with full US maps (1.5 G.

And I carry my trusty atlas and AAA state maps, just in case.

As you can see, most of the tools above are not free. The full set costs about $50 up front plus about $100/year for subscriptions. They easily pay for themselves in less than a month.

As always... YMMV
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Old 01-14-2016, 11:02 PM   #36
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Funny story about GPS
We had a new Garmin Nuvi and our friend had a new 4WD. We decided to explore the back roads around their place near Four Corners
We saw some gorgeous scenery that day. We also found out our buddy was an ace at driving in reverse when we came upon a tree growing in the middle of a narrow dirt road along a cliff face. It was almost half a mile back to a place he could turn it around
Lesson learned; just cause it's on the GPS doesn't make it so.

As always YMMV


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Old 01-14-2016, 11:04 PM   #37
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Old 01-15-2016, 08:00 AM   #38
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I like Garmin GPS, but I really miss "Avoid Interstate highways" in the route options. It has "avoid major highways", but this option excludes US highways.
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Old 01-15-2016, 10:16 AM   #39
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My 2 cents:

You NEED to spend time getting to know your GPS tool. The more advanced the unit, the more time you need to spend learning the best way to use it. Most problems that people have with routing can be avoided if you learn the best way to use the tool.

I have a high-end Garmin that I love, but the only reason I love it is that I spent many hours (ten or more I would guess) leaning to use it while it hooked to a power supply in the house. And I have to go back for a refresher course once in a while if I don't use it often enough.

One of the cool features is user selected exclusion zones. You draw a box around an area (like the Chicago SMSA) and the GPS will route you around that area. Its take a bit more creativity to map a "scenic" route but this is where your skill in using the tool pays off.

I also agree that the more tools in your tool box the better. Another GPS (phone maybe?) and book of maps, GoogleEarth, etc. all help when planning a route. But they too require that you spend some time with them to get the most benefit.
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