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garmin edge 800

Started by zonesystempro, May 16, 2011, 03:46:33 PM

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Hi everyone! The snow is gone and I've been riding with my new garmin edge 800 on many occasions. So far it's very cool!  I've been able to upload my rides to the garmin site and view an unlimited amount of info on each ride. So much to learn. Anyone else out there that has this same unit let me know and we can discuss any issues as they arise. I'm up here in Canada (100 km north of Toronto), so if you are looking for some trails to ride let me know and I'll see if I can help you out. I ride both road and trail, but only on a mountain bike. This gives me the freedom to go anywhere.



Good for you - I just got the same unit bundled with the heart rate monitor and the North American maps. 

I use my unit mostly for mountain biking and running - some running on road and quite a bit off.  I was disappointed in the off road capabilities of the North American maps so I came across this site when searching for an answer.  What I was seeking was some good topo maps I could download without spending a whole lot more money than I already have.

I read up on the Basecamp and Mapsource programs and downloaded them to my computer for the links provided based over at the Garmin site.  After seeing that putting new maps in the Edge 800 with the existing card might ruin the data on the card - I went down to a local Best Buy and purchased a 4 Gb micro card for $14.00 USD. 

As I live in California, I first downloaded the 'California Topo' map but could not find it when I opened Mapsource.  I went to the tool menu and activated all the tool bars but I couldn't find a dropdown menu as in the illustrations.  So, again went to the tool menu and switched applications from 'no map' to the California Topo - then it popped up on my computer screen and I could play with it a bit - but still no drop down menu on the upper left of the screen. 

After reviewing this topo map, I noted it didn't have much in my area on the streets but zooming in, it had pretty good topo lines - the parks etc. weren't what what I was hoping for.

So, the Californa Topo 2011 shows up on the site a few days later, I downloaded it and it installed easily as the other.  Mapquest recognized it - this time Mapquest supplied the dropdown box with both maps in it.  After reviewing at the 2011 map - it was just what I was looking for.  All the current streets, lots of trails, parks, golf courses, forests, excellent topo lines etc. clearly highlighted and colored.  Excellent.

One thing, if you're working late on this project, set the Edge 800 unit in the map section to day mode and not automatic - othewise, your maps on the units diplay will appear dark if it's after sunset as the unit thinks it's night time.  It's menu, wrench, system, display, color mode, day option.  That will keep it on day mode even during night time.

I highlighted and saved to a file most of Southern California and it only took up a small portion of the 4 Gb micro card.  Uploaded the map to the unit and it works like a charm.  Using this map, I've lost the navigation feature such as navigate to home but I don't use it anyway since I bike local in on the trails and mountains.  It's nice have most all the streets and all the topography off road.  Probably not the detail of some of the expensive maps the stores sell but still quite good.

Hopefully this will help any that are buying this unit - great site and appreciate all the work that has gone into it.

July 21, 2011 Update:

I downloaded a transparent map from this site - California Contours 40 ft Overlay and worked with it a bit in Mapsource.  I managed to highlight and create a map ( a little tricky as you can only see the blank boxes and have to make sure you are highlighting the appropriate areas) that has the transparent topo overlays for the areas I use.  Loaded it into my Edge 800 and reinstalled my City Navigator chip - works like a charm.  I have full usage of the navigation from the chip and all the topos are there for mountain biking.  Some of the major trails in my area show up on the map - not quite what I had with my other setup but excellent nonetheless.  Just make sure you activate both the maps on the chip and the topo overlay on the GPS unit.

When I loaded the info for the transparent overlay, it overwrote my old map and it no longer shows up.  Must be the size of the map and only so much memory in the unit - I think there's 105 MB available in total in the internal memory.

I may try  to move the CN data onto a larger capacity chip and put these other maps on there as well so I can change to other maps in the field if necessary.