Custom GPS Cradles for select Garmins and SPOTs

Discussion in 'Vendors' started by Stovebolt, Feb 12, 2010.

  1. Stovebolt

    Stovebolt Team Ruptured Buzzard

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
    Oddometer:
    486
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    Hi,

    As users of the 60-series Garmin GPS's are probably aware, there are cradle mounting options from RAM and TOURATECH, and either of those cradles may serve. Some users, myself included, have noticed that while the RAM mounting system is a great system - at least it is in my opinion, that the cradles themselves can leave a little to be desired. So, I went ahead and made my own to keep the pesky GPS unit attached to my cockpit. Long story abbreviated, I made a few for some friends going off-road to Baja, and they reported that they were an improvement over the RAM cradles, certainly in terms of performance - no more premature ejections....Each one is made by me by hand using Kydex or Concealex materials, tools I have fabricated from scratch, and they take me a bit of time for each one. I haven't tooled for mass production and I do this more or less as a kitchen table home occupation effort.

    If anybody wants a cradle, I'll sell you one for $75 and mail it to you CONUS USPS. You'll need to mail me a check. Free shipping remains in effect for ADVRider inmates, indefinitely. That is, free mailing US Postal Service, Flat Rate Priority Mail with USPS tracking to the continental United States addresses. International may be extra, but no UPS or FEDEX.

    The power on/off button area is relieved for access and the buttons are easily navigable with a gloved hand. I've tested these new-improved cradles on my snowmobile on clapped-out trails in Idaho and Montana, and I really like it. I call it the "Buzz Bomb Cradle" because it's a Team Ruptured Buzzard effort. (RAM ball/diamond mount not included, but I send a pre-drilled reinforcement insert with two bolts and locknuts for mounting to the standard RAM ball/diamond.)

    These are the kinds of things you will need (and supply for yourself - I don't sell these RAM mounts) to mount my CRADLE -

    A RAM diamond plate with ball
    http://www.gpscity.com/ram-mount-diamond-plate-with-1-inch-ball-ram-b-238u.html

    The BUZZ BOMB Cradle is designed to connect to the RAM Diamond Plate on the back of the cradle. The diamond plate has a 1.0 inch diameter rubber ball connected at right angles to the plate, which connects directly to the 1 inch arm socket. You will also need the RAM arm socket...
    http://www.gpscity.com/ram-mount-medium-arm-b-socket-ram-b-201u.html

    You will also need a way to get this onto your bike, and there a different ways to do that with the RAM system. A common mounting is on the handlebars using a setup like this...
    http://www.gpscity.com/ram-mount-zinc-u-bolt-motorcycle-mount-base-ram-b-231zu.html

    Medium length arm kit:
    https://www.gpscity.com/ram-mount-cradle-plate-zinc-u-bolt-rail-mount-1.0-inch-ball.html or maybe,

    Short length arm kit:
    https://www.gpscity.com/ram-mount-zinc-u-bolt-rail-base-with-short-arm-diamond-assembly.html

    Thats the basics. There are so many options to "get your balls together" with RAM components that each rider needs to sort that out with their own bike. Different handlebar diameters take different sized U-bolts, so pay attention to your dimensions when shopping. But I will stress that the cradle I make is designed to work only with the RAM mount system. The adjustability and shock absorption and impact resistance of the RAM mounts help keep my cradles "bomb-proof." Mounting them any other way with any other components is specifically advised against. Please don't do that... it's a bad idea and it defeats a specific design feature/concept. Do not "hard mount" to anything without using the RAM mount system.

    PM for further if interested, or post here. If BALDY runs a Garmin 60CSX and wants one, his is free.

    Respectfully,

    Dave Jankowsky
    aka "Stovebolt"
    Victor, Idaho

    ALL CRADLES ARE DESIGNED TO BE USED IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE RAM MOUNT SYSTEM AND MUST NOT BE MOUNTED IN ANY OTHER WAY! CUSTOMER MUST SUPPLY THEIR OWN RAM MOUNTS.

    CURRENTLY AVAILABLE:

    Garmin 60-Series Black Carbon Holstex
    Garmin 78-Series Limited on hand availability - check with me
    Garmin Montana Series Black Carbon Holstex
    Both Generation SPOTS Black or (Gray fleck carbon KYDEX - discontinued color. Check with me for colors...)

    All models remain $75 and I will pay to mail them to any ADV inmate within Continental United States via US Postal Service, Flat Rate Priority Mail, for free.
    I don't take PayPal or credit cards.
    Garmin Montana now available - September 2012
    [​IMG]
    Montana - Carbon HOLSTEX
    [​IMG]
    Garmin Montana on left and Garmin 60CSx on right - Carbon HOLSTEX
    [​IMG]
    Montana and GEN1 SPOT
    [​IMG]
    G60 and GEN1 SPOT
    [​IMG]
    GEN1 and GEN2 SPOTs
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Garmin 60-Series / Garmin 78-Series / Garmin Montana Series / GEN1 SPOT / GEN2 SPOT [​IMG]
    G78 on left and G60 on right, mounted up for display on Casper my Friendly Punkin. 2010 450 XC-W Six Days dream bike.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    #1
  2. advjackass

    advjackass orange crusher

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2005
    Oddometer:
    940
    Location:
    wilson, wy.
    i have used one of the original prototypes and never had an issue loosing my GPS. sign me up for a new one out of that fancy material Janko!!!:D
    #2
  3. clapped_r6

    clapped_r6 The Spoad Warrior

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    looks cool

    if i didn't already have a TT one, i'd be on this!
    #3
  4. Jwats

    Jwats Bike till u Die

    Joined:
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    I am sure there are other riders out there that have seen their GPS skipping across the terra firma. Our group cannot be the only bunch. This cradle works very well, it does not block the SAT signal & holds your unit firmly,heh heh. We have had the misfortune of losing a GPS. There have been quite a few miles covered to miraculously find one.You can end that bullshit with the purchase of this cradle, we did. Excellent product Jenks, I want the sexy new model. Joe
    #4
  5. EdGear

    EdGear Edventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2008
    Oddometer:
    575
    Location:
    Bay Area, CA
    Very nice looking case.

    Kydex has technical data showing it good for antenna domes (covers) in the 1.5Mhz region of the GPS signal

    http://www.kydex.com/briefs/126.pdf

    I did a quick google search and did not find technical data on Concealex. Might want to verify the RF properties before you go too far.
    Ed
    #5
  6. Stovebolt

    Stovebolt Team Ruptured Buzzard

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
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    EdGear,

    Thanks for looking at this and for the advice - much appreciated. And thanks for the look at my cradle and the encouragement.

    You are correct about precautionary wisdom since the performance of an antenna can be affected by surrounding materials and I did check the Kydex in the field and in the available literature, and found similar performance characteristics reported as in the example provided in your link for Kydex. My intention is to provide a printed disclaimer with links printed that substantiate claims about RF transparency for liability concerns - since it covers a navigation device and all the itinerant legal reasons for that in the crystal ball.

    I haven't had more than field testing joy yet though on the CONCEALEX research, and need to source some decent scientific documentation on that RF transparency issue, neutral dielectric effects with this material. So if you or anybody else comes across any such beef in the scientific literature and would care to point me to it, I would be grateful. I'm not a scientist and don't even play one on TV, and the importance of covering this base is obvious and shouldn't be overlooked, even at this stage of the game. I do appreciate you chiming in with this point.

    My 60CSX gets a 9-bird lock within about 20 seconds with the CONCEALEX, no different than without a cradle, but will that stand up in court when somebody decides to sue me? Important stuff, to be sure. (Newer MTK chipset. Haven't wrapped the CONCEALEX around SIRFIII chipset'ed 60-series, but can't imagine any difference in chipset technology affecting the antenna performance - but then again, like I said - I'm not a scientist and ought to cover that base as well, now that I think about it.)

    Thanks to all who have responded and for the encouragement.

    I remain -

    Sincerely yours,

    Stovey
    *******************************************

    #6
  7. teton bailey

    teton bailey n00b

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1
    Stovey,

    Fantastic idea! You have certainly put a lot of time putting this together. I know the folks that have used your product and they have rave reviews. Sign me up for one of your new ones. I need it for my snow bike, so get on it!

    Also, I want to give props to your website. Great stories and friends.

    Keep up the good work.
    #7
  8. Stovebolt

    Stovebolt Team Ruptured Buzzard

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    Humble appreciation Teton Bailey,

    I will acknowledge right here that Teton Baily is one of the most accomplished motorcycle riders I've EVER ridden with, and a righteous dual sport companion in his own regard. Not to mention years of travel and adventure experience throughout North and South America. Coming from you.... WOW.

    A million thanks, Sir!
    :D
    #8
  9. Stovebolt

    Stovebolt Team Ruptured Buzzard

    Joined:
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    I sold my last CONCEALEX cradle, and have a handful of KYDEX left. More material inbound to me in the coming week, so no CONCEALEX units completed for a couple weeks.

    Thank you everybody for your support. I will also be an LLC by the time the new CONCEALEX cradles are made. Wish me more luck.... I feel like a virgin at the Buffalo Chip campground.

    :eek1
    #9
  10. bumpylogz

    bumpylogz n00b

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Oddometer:
    7
    Location:
    Jackson, WY
    I am one of the unfortunate victims of the ram mount system. I sent mine into some sagebrushy rabbit hidey hole or some such. After that I painted the replacement blaze orange in hopes that if I sent it bouncing across the desert at 60 MPH there might be some hope of finding it. I have one of the prototypes and it is BOMBER. It has been stellar, the unit is solidly held, there is no way it is coming out or off unless it is ripped off which would be no easy task, so I guess it was a waste of good paint. The buttons are easily accessible and the there is no interferance with the screen visibilty at all. It did a stint in Baja on some crazy single track and never even budged, great product! I look forward to getting my mitts on the "New and Improved" version.

    Nicely done!
    Cheers!
    #10
  11. ThumperDRZ

    ThumperDRZ Bouncing off Rocks!

    Joined:
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    Oddometer:
    2,401
    Location:
    Stinkin' County, MO
    Sign me up for one of them Concealex cradles when you get more material..:clap .....tired of that Ram cradle tearing up the bottom rubber on my GPS----this unit needs to last me a few more years......Please send me a PM when one is ready.
    #11
  12. Stovebolt

    Stovebolt Team Ruptured Buzzard

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
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    486
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    THUMPERDRZ,

    You're in, thank you. List in progress, won't be a problem making new runs - it's my focus in life! I'll shoot a PM when I've got 'em done and buffed.

    Stovey
    #12
  13. Stovebolt

    Stovebolt Team Ruptured Buzzard

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
    Oddometer:
    486
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    Just wanted to say I'm having no problem with the GPS antenna reception from actual use, and continue to gather my scientific fact find on the rf transparency issue to line that up for all the lawyers.

    Here's a pic of my current personal proto in use in the cockpit of my fuel-injected nightmare of a snowmobile, showing the bird-lock from a cold start at about 23 seconds. 11 satellites high and tight inside my concealex cradle, FWIW.

    Thanks to those who have placed orders already, and especially to the mutts who cleaned me out of the last of the current crop of Concealex ones! I have about 8 Kydex units shippable by next weekend in the interim between the next build that should be done by the end of this month, shipping first week in March. Orders and checks in advance will be first served.

    For those who may be searching for a Garmin 60CSX - PCNATION had been selling them online for about $282, and it might be worth a look there. (I have nothing to do with PCNATION. Just spreading the good word - if it may help anybody. That was a pretty screamin' price tag.)

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][/IMG]


    Also, RAM's are the way to go, in my opinion. Nothing compares to a clapped out approach trail to the mountains on a sled in terms of a guy and a machine getting slammed for all get out - far worse than Baja - mountain sleds do not have the suspension of a trail cruiser. The RAM system holds fast and true - just like my "Buzz Bomb" cradles.

    Seizure later,

    Stovey
    #13
  14. BBriggs

    BBriggs El Noobo

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2007
    Oddometer:
    162
    Location:
    Wyoming
    I to have been using one of the original mounts and it works great. I have tested it for about a year. The new ones are much more refined and looking quite good.

    Thanks for the great mount, Keep up the good work.

    Berg
    #14
  15. Stovebolt

    Stovebolt Team Ruptured Buzzard

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    486
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    Berg,

    I can't thank you enough for all the assistance you've given me on my projects over the years, including this one, but I can at least express it publicly here for starters.

    I salute you, Sir. :clap

    Dave
    #15
  16. team ftb

    team ftb Befuddled Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
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    1,772
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    Been using the Ram mounts on my 60csx for years. Broken one in a crash and another has widened over the the last year to the point the unit rattles inside the mount.

    Question: I download my tracks after every ride so would like access to the port so that I can plug in the USB cable into the back of the GPS. Any chance you will be making one with that option? If not is it possible to just drill out the material for access or will this significantly weaken the mount?
    #16
  17. Stovebolt

    Stovebolt Team Ruptured Buzzard

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2006
    Oddometer:
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    Team Ftb,

    It's no trick for me to drill out all the ports in the back, to include the external antenna and usb port - my first cradles had them drilled out. I just think it's more elegant without them, and of course less labor involved for me when I sell them. I have no plans on making them standard with drilled ports other than for power port, because most users might take the unit out of the cradle and head toward the computer. But it would be easy enough for me to do for you and I can send you one how you want it. No problem. It shouldn't affect the strength or durability of the cradle in any measurable way, if our field tests are any indication. All the field testing and crashing we've been doing has been with Kydex units with all the rear access ports relieved for access, save for my current crop of concealex that I just decided not to relieve for retail production. Most users would not be using the external antenna option on this GPS for off-road applications, and I figured to blow off the labor, and let a user drill a hole if they wanted to. In most cases there, I should suspect, folks might opt to drill out for just the USB port like what you ask about. It's not a bad thought, and I can get you one like that. Just sharing my thoughts on how I came to the decision, for what it may be worth...

    If you want a Kydex one, I have those right now and can ship as soon as I get a check. If you want concealex it will be about 2 weeks and I can put you on the list. I'm only taking checks right now, and you can shoot me an e-mail or a pm to get one. I have flat rate US Priority Mail boxes to just drop in the mail that makes it a good-to-go operation for me.

    For the first few months of this hi-tech operation (look out Donald Trump) I will mail all my units to my new friends US PRIORITY MAIL CONUS for free, my dime. As demand may increase and I am able to manage my numbers better, I'll probably charge the $4.95 for that. When I have my IPO, I'll never forget all the people who made me rich and famous. :clap For a while, regular US PRIORITY MAIL flat rate is on me.

    Also, just to clarify - since people use terms differently - what I make and sell are CRADLES, not "mounts." The RAM mounting system is what it is, and I think it's great, and refer to it as the "mount" or mounting system. I don't sell them - RAM has them, and my CRADLES are supplied to replace just the RAM CRADLE in their mounting system. The cradle being the plastic thing that, in RAM's case looks good, but as has been noted by some users and agreed with by me, and only in my opinion of course, is sucky at keeping the 60CSX secure. "Sucky" is a technical term I have learned from getting ramped up in the business world, and working with high-tech materials, studying about roHS certifications, dealing with NAFTA and the IRS, the NAACP, the CIA, MI5, and all other manner of agencies and literature over the course of this endeavor so far. I have also heard RAM cradle users banty the term about as they wandered off into the sagebrush looking for $400 navigation devices that had gone missing from their cockpits. I listen, and I continue to learn.

    The RAM CRADLE is easy to get a GPS into and out of, and mine are harder to get a GPS in to. Not difficult - just harder. And more durable. And offer more unit protection to include the antenna. And getting prettier. And that's the secret.... they are made to retain the GPS - PERIOD. There have been ZERO accidental ejections from any of my cradles so far. I would bet that any GPS loss from one of my cradles would have to occur only during a catastrophic failure of the entire front end of a motorcycle; like a loss of handlebars, triple clamps, steering head. You would then find the decapitated GPS still secured inside my Buzz Bomb cradle. Except you would probably already be dead at that point. The RAM (mounting) system is that good, in my opinion, and my "Buzz Bombs" are the first thing to come along that aren't a weak link in that chain. In my opinion.

    Thanks for your interest, and let me know if I can help.

    Sincerely,

    Stovey
    *************************************************

    #17
  18. Jwats

    Jwats Bike till u Die

    Joined:
    May 27, 2008
    Oddometer:
    178
    Location:
    Cooler than yours,NW Wyoming
    Huh, what. please repeat
    #18
  19. advjackass

    advjackass orange crusher

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2005
    Oddometer:
    940
    Location:
    wilson, wy.
    what is the ETA of the new batch?
    #19
  20. Stovebolt

    Stovebolt Team Ruptured Buzzard

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    Jay,

    Hey there..... Shipping Concealex starting end of next week - you will have yours for Baja, guaranteed.

    I have these mugs lined out for next run of CONCEALEX, checks on the way from some of them now:

    Jwats built / PAID / delivered :-)

    advjackass built / PAID / installed
    Pigpen in-build / needs ASAP / PAID / shipped and PM'd
    Terrapin84 pm / built / PAID / Shipped
    Teton Bailey built / PAID / delivered
    Bumpylogz built / PAID / delivered
    Knobbiethrower built / PAID / shipped and PM'd
    JoeNuclear built / PAID / shipped and PM'd
    Bicycle Phil
    / built / Paid / PM'd shipping

    and five others from a different forum, and a handful from other sources. I am keeping busy, and more raw material is ordered, but not enough time in the day.

    Anybody else wants one, shoot me a PM.

    Make check out to:

    Dave Jankowsky
    P.O. Box 656
    Victor, ID 83455

    I'm paying the USPS flat rate PRIORITY MAIL for the next couple months.

    You will miss me in Baja this year............... what will you guys do without somebody to have to babysit?

    :rofl

    advjackass - I'll be in the shop tomorrow (Friday) if you will be around. I am working on cradles, but won't have them done until next week. I will not forget you brutha......

    Stovey


    #20