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Messages - Boyd

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General Discussion / Re: using img files
« on: March 15, 2009, 10:42:07 AM »
Sorry, forgot about that old model. Even easier, just snap the antenna closed. That will turn off the GPS receiver. Tap the screen and the Set Loc button should appear at the bottom.

Using The Maps/Garmin Software / Re: Grid lines/Printing Questions
« on: March 14, 2009, 03:44:51 PM »
Instead of Mapsource, try opening the .img file directly with GPSMapEdit: http://www.geopainting.com/en/

I'm pretty sure it has an option to show grid lines.

General Discussion / Re: using img files
« on: March 14, 2009, 03:43:11 PM »
note that I should very much liked to have tested such functions before I left, but there's no way to do that on the 350 . . .

Actually there is a way. Go to Menu > Tools > Settings > System and turn on the GPS Simulator. Now zoom WAY out until you can find London. Zoom back in to a location you want to test. There should be a button at the bottom of the screen "Set Loc". Tap that and the Nuvi will believe you really *are* there. That will show you what to expect from searches and routing. You can even simulate walking/driving a route.

Map Making Support / Re: Newbie needs some direction
« on: March 10, 2009, 11:58:29 AM »
I don't use AutoCAD so I'm not sure what it can do.

If you scan your paper maps, Mapwel has tools to import and georeference them. You can try all this out in the free demo and see how you like it before purchasing.

Global Mapper is another fantastic program for this, but it can't compile the garmin maps, you need to export as a .mp file and use cgpsmapper to compile. And Global Mapper costs about $250.

Map Making Support / Re: Newbie needs some direction
« on: March 06, 2009, 11:01:38 AM »
Well first you will need to do some detective work and find the data for those claims. Hopefully they are available as shapefiles (files with a .shp extension). There would be a variety of ways to use this data then. One simple approach would be to use Mapwel, which can import the shapefiles and let you change their color or pattern. It will also compile this into a transparent map with a few mouse clicks and load it onto your GPS.

One issue will be that polygons (the claims) cannot be made transparent, so if you overlaid them on another map, they would cover up any details below. One solution for this would be to make your claims map opaque but make the Arizona map transparent. There are various ways to do this, but we have been asked not to discuss ways to modify others' maps so I will leave that as an excercise for you.

Another approach would be to use a pattern of dots to fill the polygons instead of a solid color. That would allow details from the underlying map to show through between the dots. Mapwel makes it easy to do this with its user-defined styles. For more info see: http://www.mapwel.biz/

General Discussion / Re: 3-D maps
« on: March 04, 2009, 12:19:13 PM »
There are a variety of software packages which can display 3d maps on your computer, but nobody has figured out how to use the 3d data in a map which works on a Garmin GPS. OziExplorer has nothing whatsoever to do with Garmin compatible maps. They have a proprietary map format which Global Mapper can't even grok.

I have the full version of OziExplorer and it's pretty cool for making your own maps from raster images, like scanned USGS maps or satellite photos. You can then use these with OziExplorer CE, which is an application running under Windows Mobile on handheld devices. A variety of GPS'es from Magellan, Mio, Navigon and HP are Windows CE based and have been hacked to work with Ozi CE - I run it on my iPAQ 310. BUT... this is in no way related to making Garmin maps. Completely different approach - Garmin maps are vector-based, Ozi is (primarily) raster-based.

General Discussion / Re: using img files
« on: March 02, 2009, 06:41:06 AM »
For some reason, only the very newest Garmin units have USB 2 interfaces. USB 1 is dog slow. But I agree there's something else going on there. My Oregon and my Nuvi 205 seem very inconsistent in terms of transfer speed, and copying FROM the unit is much faster than sending TO it. OTOH, my Nuvi 5000 is lightning fast in both directions. Strange...

Map Making Support / Re: GM contours
« on: February 28, 2009, 02:34:55 PM »
Once GM completes contours how do I determine which are minor,intermediate or major? Or does it matter in the end product?

I honestly don't think it matters. When you export the contours as an .mp file they will be properly flagged by Global Mapper. Have you seen their tutorial here?


Note how the major and minor intervals appear in the screenshots from both Global Mapper and the GPS itself on pages 21 and 25. I would not get discouraged by the postgis issue. I'm making my own maps and have not needed it. The only thing which may be an issue is processing POI data from the census bureau.

But Global Mapper can do almost everything else for you using the powerful search function and the MP_TYPE field which gives you control over what kind of lines/points/polygons will be used on the GPS; this is also covered in the tutorial at the above link.

GPSr Units / Re: Sony NV-U44
« on: February 28, 2009, 10:35:07 AM »
The Sony GPS'es are not compatible with Garmin maps unfortunately. You  might try these places for discussion:


General Discussion / Re: using img files
« on: February 28, 2009, 10:31:30 AM »
<sigh>I'm stunned that there is no readily available freebie utility that will show you what the heck is in that there nnnnn.img file.

GPSMapEdit (as per my link above) is the program which can do this and you can use the freeware version. I'm stunned that you didn't even try this before reaching such a conclusion. ;)

To use MapSource, first download the free training center software here:


That will install a crude basemap on your computer. Now try to install Mapsource again. It will see the training center basemap as a "product" and you will be all set. Inside mapsource there is a dropdown menu to choose maps. See if it lists City Navigator as an option. If not, then go back to garmin.com and see if you are able to download the 2009 map update again. That will install the City Navigator maps into Mapsource.

I think the "gotcha" is that Mapsource has to first be installed on your computer. If it is, then when you download a map update it is installed to work on both the GPS and your computer.

General Discussion / Re: using img files
« on: February 27, 2009, 04:30:03 PM »
any freebie / shareware software out there that would allow me to look at .img map files?

GPSMapEdit will open .img files.


Map Making Support / Re: Alternate types depending on zoom?
« on: February 25, 2009, 09:42:59 AM »
So I think its a built in function of Garmin that it automatically decides whether or not to display it.

This is true on the Nuvi, however handhelds - as well as the old StreetPilot 26x0 series - have a series of preference settings where you specify at which zoom level different map features are shown and you can also choose what size text (or none at all). I really wish Garmin would include these in some kind of advanced menu on the Nuvi's.

Here are some of the choices on the Oregon; other handhelds are similar

General Discussion / Re: using img files
« on: February 25, 2009, 09:35:22 AM »
Mine is permanently muted - I couldn't even tell you what the voice sounds like. Guess it's just my quirk, but I don't like machines that talk. A GPS should just shut up and show me where I am or where I'm going.  ;D

The 500 series is pretty odd and personally wouldn't interest me. For example, there is no way to lock the screen so it doesn't accidently get activated in your pocket. That is a major flaw for a touchscreen GPS designed for hiking. Even the cheapo Nuvi 205 has a sliding switch to lock the screen, and the Oregon has a button to lock the screen.

The 500 is also lacking just about all of the advanced menu options you would expect from a handheld. It's main advantage would be the preloaded US Topo maps and the fact that it's waterproof. Other than that, you're basically getting a Nuvi without text to speech. $270 is a pretty good price though.

General Discussion / Re: using img files
« on: February 22, 2009, 10:47:48 AM »
is there software to created your own route on the pc and download "and this is how I want to get there" to the gps unit?

Yes, there is MapSource for the PC and RoadTrip for the Mac which will allow you to plan a route and transfer it to the GPS. However, if you're using a Nuvi 350, this won't work. You need a GPS which can handle multi-stop routing and the only Nuvi series which can do that are the ones whose models begin with the number 5, 7 and 8 (eg: 750, 885, etc). You will also need to install the City Navigator maps on your computer, and they are distributed separately from the GPS itself.

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