Instructions for making a custom map for Garmin GPS

Started by RCinSTP, February 24, 2022, 03:53:37 PM

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The attached file has instructions for making a custom map for Garmin GPS.  I was not able to post the instructions.  If anyone is able to take the instructions from the text file and post it, that would be better.  Please comment with suggestions or clarifications to the instructions.


Sorry, just skimmed through quickly. Note that the free trial of Globalmapper is actually very limited. It will only allow you to export one or two files, then puts up a message that you need to purchase for further data exports. So it's probably not very useful for real projects unless you buy it. I ran into this recently when deciding whether to upgrade my old version. FWIW, I did upgrade to Globalmapper v23 and it's a big improvement over my almost 10-year-old version.  :)

Also, I would not call this a "custom map" tutorial, that term has a very specific meaning for Garmin. It refers to raster imagery in .kmz files. I know that GPSFileDepot calls any map that isn't a Garmin product a "custom map", but I guess that's because the site hasn't been updated for so long. Ever since about 2008 Garmin has defined "custom maps" as user-created .kmz files.


Thank Boyd!  I didn't realize that it is possible to use GPSMapEdit to create the .mp format file.  Use File  >>  Import.
Also, this link:
has good info about .mp formats. 
He mentions MicroGISEditor - map editor.  I haven't tried it but it might be a good alternative to GlobalMapper.

I agree about the term "Custom Map".  Maybe we need to call them "Personal Maps" or something.


CGPSMapper is no longer developed. MKGMAP is still developed and reads .mp files as well as OSM stuff. For me it is much faster than cGPSMapper and I use it to create a .GMAP folder that can be copied  to Program Data/Garmin/Maps for Basecamp on Windows or processed with GarminMapManager on MacOS - instead of running an installer that updates the Registry.


Quote from: RCinSTP on February 26, 2022, 06:22:48 AMI agree about the term "Custom Map".  Maybe we need to call them "Personal Maps" or something.

IMO, they are simply "Garmin-compatible maps".  :)

FWIW, what MapManager does on the Mac is trivial. It simply copies the files to the correct directory. On MacOS, when you install MapManager it will cause folders that have a .gmap or .gmapi extension to appear as "packages" in the Finder instead of folders and MapManager will open when you double-click them. But in reality, they're just folders full of all the map files - same as Windows.