Welcome to GPSFileDepot!

Main Menu

Unusual use for a GPS

Started by gnappi, September 12, 2018, 02:21:14 PM

Previous topic - Next topic


New member, and my first post.

I've had a Nuvi 1390 for quite some time, and my main use for it (95+% of the time) has been locating fishing spots in south Florida. The original map had absolutely GR8 local waterway definitions that were so granular that the smallest canals nearby even those on or near small paved roads were represented on the travel map. I found some honey holes that are generally inaccessible where I can hand launch my small boat at locations that just murder the bass :-)

Anyway... My Nuvi came barebones (no removable memory installed) with free lifetime map upgrades. I had never upgraded the map, so I installed a 32GB card and downloaded the recent one but to my utter surprise the "upgraded" City Navigator North America NT 2019.2.v22.20 not only lost the greater majority of useful water profiles but WIPED out the map that was on my internal memory!

I was totally disgusted that an "upgrade" would destroy a perfectly good map which was not interfering with the new map location memory space. I "get" that some lawyer likely made that decision to exonerate Garmin in the event an old map caused a problem, but a simple "acknowledge" of possible errors and responsibility on the user for using an old map will stand up in court.

I've been a programmer for over 35 years (application and test code) and this made no sense to me. When called, Garmin basically said, yeah, we delete old maps, you can't get an archived map but we will give you a "Customer loyalty" price break on several new models" with the same new map that isn't working for me any more.

Not today! :-)

I've downloaded and installed the OSM east coast and a Topo map from GPSFILEDEPOT but neither have the waterway resolution I would find usable, so my question(s) is/are:

Does anyone know if I can transfer an older map if found online into my current 1390?
Is there an open source map with mega detail for local waterways?

Failing that, for a second plan I found several used Garmin GPS on the web with confirmed ~7+ year old maps on them and rather than diddle with mine any more I will buy them both and I will give my current GPS to my GF.

So, I know this is an unusual post, any help would be appreciated.


did you try Florida Topo created by Oz  from this site ?
George Carey


As a programmer with 35 years experience, surely you know the importance of backups. But evidently you never backed up your Nuvi? If you had, it would be trivial to simply copy the old map back to it. If you had installed the old City Navigator on your computer, that would also be a way to recover it. I assume you didn't do that?

I used to own a Nuvi 1350, which was basically the same as your 1390. IMO, the 1300 series was not one of Garmin's best, it was rather quirky. Do you have a smartphone? If so, there are many, many apps of both iOS and Android that offer a choice of different mapping. Most of them have free trials. Would be worth checking out.

Otherwise, if you really want to have a Garmin dedicated GPS, then you could one their handheld models that allows you to use raster imagery - such as aerial imagery and scanned USGS topo maps. That would give you a lot more options for mapping. But these devices are all rather expensive.

If you want to stick with the old Nuvi, then try some of these maps and see if you like any of them better. You could just install them on your computer to check them out before putting the on the GPS.

You cannot install a City Navigator map from another GPS because they are copy protected in a way that locks them to a specific device. Any attempt to defeat this copy protection would be illegal and it's against site policy to discuss that kind of thing.


Of course I know that backups are needed, I just never in my wildest dream would think that a coder would destroy a map not associated with a memory location not needed by the update. 


Not giving a user an option to backup their map
NOT giving a user a fallback position to rely on should the upgrade fail in process
Not giving a user the option to stop an upgrade to backup their own data are all from a programming / programmer's standpoint an obvious missed class in programming 101... it's just plain stupid, and there's no excuse for it.

Anyway this was the first time this GPS was connected to a computer and I had no idea what / how their software map upgrade would handle my maps and hardware so I left it their hands. Lesson learned.

When I connected the GPS I used basecamp which I use for my Oregon. I had no Idea what other software products worked with the Nuvi.

A Smartphone in a car is to me a less than wonderful application as I said the Nuvi has served me a long time it's not an option to change it.

At any rate, I did find an OSM generic map that seems to have waterways near my home that the garmin upgraded map does not. Further testing away from home will tell all.


Well it gets even worse. Garmin broke their Basecamp/MapInstall software with an update back in May. The current versions are not capable of sending maps such as the ones on this site to a GPS. They don't seem very interested in fixing this problem.


Yeah I read that, thanks all for the heads up! I won't be "upgrading" my copy any time soon.


They delete the old map because two versions of the same map do not work on  the GPS and the coding is not designed to deal with that situation. I doubt in the hundred thousand users that update their maps four times a year that anyone else has ever complained that this happens.


Simply comparing file size, or date is a nobrainer to adopt, BUT every file name is different so your comment makes no sense from a minimally competent coder's standpoint.  But I guess we're not talking minimally competent are we? See my previous post.

At any rate, whether nobody complained or noticed is not the issue, "I" did and the OSM map fixed the problem... I'll not use another Garmin map.


Well continue on your internet rant. Perhaps go outside and yell at the sky. It will do as much good.

There is no point in having two versions of the same map on a device so the old is deleted. It makes sense to everyone but you.


Rant? and you continue to go on challenging MY decision making? Ha you have some serious thinking to do.

Oh, another thought... are the users who are complaining about recent software releases from Garmin also ranting? Wake up.


It's dead easy to find the old CN product and replace the new one, but I don't know this site's policy on that stuff, so you're on your own.

Doesn't the new update just overwrite the old map with exactly the same file name?
"gmaprom.img" or similar? Why wouldn't it be overwritten?

For the ordinary customer who has less than 35 years programming experience, that would be confusing to leave every previous version on the device.


Yes it just overwrites the file and yes nobody else wants two versions of the same map.


Quote from: Red90 on September 16, 2018, 06:13:21 PM
Well continue on your internet rant. Perhaps go outside and yell at the sky. It will do as much good.

There is no point in having two versions of the same map on a device so the old is deleted. It makes sense to everyone but you.

Well, I received a reply from Garmin's cartography department and apparently THEY feel it makes sense and asked for lat lon of a sample of locations that are missing.

Note in particular my comments to Garmin in bold below, I'm certain there are many others who have use for navigational waterway info, that YOU cant see?

Your "RANT" was completely uncalled for.

Thank you very much for your reply. It has taken me a while to
re-visit some bodies of water that I remember were on the original map
my 2009 (or so) generation Nuvi contained which had been useful for
locating and fishing bodies of water.

Note all of the bodies are navigable by small vessels (ramp launched,
no open sea access) up to 20 feet or so and these waterways are
maintained by the South Florida Water Management District.

The first three are in Palm Beach county, the last two are in Broward
county. Note these are only a very small sample of waterways that were
on my first Nuvi map that have disappeared.

I found that a recent OSM map did indeed have these waterways, which I
have been forced to use (they are not as well done as the maps from
Garmin) as I need the waterway information. The original Garmin map is
unknown as the coders wiped it from my Nuvi internal memory but the
current Garmin map is:

CN North America NT 2019.20

Perhaps this comment is purely anecdotal but I expect many fields like
State/county water management teams, Fish and Game stock personnel,
independent aquatic weed and fish stock control companies, and city
storm aquatic maintenance crews are now compelled to use google maps
in lieu of a GPS?