Garmin AMPS mount durability?

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by SpeedyR, Apr 2, 2013.

  1. SpeedyR

    SpeedyR SE in the SE

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,292
    Location:
    ATL, GA
    Looking at a new Montana and have read/seen about the AMPS mount for it.

    My question is, how durable is the mount? I plan to use it on a KTM 950 SE and 450 XC with appropriate RAM mounts. It seems like if it locks the montana in the mount with the security bit that should hold it pretty solid but just debating about a TT mount (what I'm coming from).

    feedback on the mount now that they have been out for a while?
    #1
  2. Drif10

    Drif10 Accredited Jackass

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2003
    Oddometer:
    48,302
    Location:
    Gates of Moscow
    Colebatch did 18,000 kms offroad across Europe, Russia, Siberia with one, never a problem.
    #2
  3. Adventure Addict

    Adventure Addict Doin it in the dirt

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Oddometer:
    79
    Location:
    Wherever my bike takes me...
    Mount is rock solid, held the GPS safe and secure during a recent ride in Asia that covered 2000kms of difficult offroad terrain. Rain, mud, vibrations, no problem.

    [​IMG]

    The power pins, on the other hand, suck. Out of the six copper pins on the mount the single most important one fell out. This of course is the one delivering the 12 volt battery power to the GPS.

    Garmin has now sent me a new mount under warranty but for a few days I was dependent on being able to charge the GPS each evening and hope it lasted through the day. Not always possible and a couple times it failed me with dead battery.
    #3
  4. wbbnm

    wbbnm Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Oddometer:
    3,166
    Location:
    Minnesota
    I have had mine for about 9 months. I have taken it on some very rough rides on my 450 KTM including mountain single track and 300 miles of difficult riding in Moab a couple of weeks ago.

    No problems. Don't know about long term wear yet.
    #4
  5. Emmbeedee

    Emmbeedee Procrastinators

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    Oddometer:
    10,697
    Location:
    Near Ottawa, ON, Canada
    You could have used 3XAA batteries instead of the rechargeable.

    [​IMG]
    #5
  6. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2004
    Oddometer:
    12,528
    Location:
    NWA
    Curious, did the pin fall out while taking the GPS out of the mount, or did it fall out while riding without the GPS in the mount?
    #6
  7. Adventure Addict

    Adventure Addict Doin it in the dirt

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Oddometer:
    79
    Location:
    Wherever my bike takes me...
    I tried that... The GPS would start to boot up, then shut off again. Brand new AA batteries right out of the package.

    Tried turning it on dozens of times both with AA batteries and the rechargeable. It did not play nice again until the rechargable battery was above 4%.

    Very annoying... maybe coincidence that it acted up after the battery died but the moral here seems to be never let the GPS shut itself off from a dead battery.
    #7
  8. Adventure Addict

    Adventure Addict Doin it in the dirt

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Oddometer:
    79
    Location:
    Wherever my bike takes me...
    One morning as we were preparing to leave I put the GPS in the mount and noticed that it did not turn on by itself like it normally does. I removed it from the mount and noticed the pin was gone. There were no problems with the GPS while riding the day before so it had to happen when the GPS was removed from the mount. You would notice if the power disappeared while riding, because the GPS will want to shut itself off unless you tell it to stay on.

    Have not done any riding with no GPS in the mount.
    #8
  9. OneEffinName

    OneEffinName Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2010
    Oddometer:
    512
    Location:
    VanIsle, BC
    130hrs of *very* hard singtrack riding plus hare scrambles. The mount has never failed. The montana has though...
    #9
  10. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2004
    Oddometer:
    12,528
    Location:
    NWA
    K thanks, have to keep an eye on that then. I smear on some dielectric grease on the pins on occasion so that should help keep the pins from sticking to the contacts, at least I hope it does. :lol3
    #10
  11. Emmbeedee

    Emmbeedee Procrastinators

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    Oddometer:
    10,697
    Location:
    Near Ottawa, ON, Canada
    Bizarre. There's something else going on there if it can't use AA batteries. I just fired mine up with a mismatched set of used Alkalines.
    #11
  12. DRTBYK

    DRTBYK All Things GPS

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Oddometer:
    7,162
    Location:
    47°50′15.8″N, 119°56′21.9″W
    I just finished 21,000+km in all types of weather and road (no-road) conditions and the Montana and the Rugged Mount did their jobs flawlessly. One of my clients on the tour did have the "sticking-pin" issue but just a small amount of WD40 sprayed on the pins of the mount and then wiped off with a clean rag will usually take care of this issue. These are self-cleaning pins and you really don't want to gunk them up with Dielectric Grease. That stuff will hold the dirt on the pins and not allow them to clean themselves.

    When I've been out in the dust/rain/mud I just wash the mount with water, let it dry and use a very light application of WD40. Before putting the Montana in the mount, I just run my (clean) finger across the pins once or twice to "exercise" them.

    Hope that info helps.

    Cheers,
    #12
  13. SpeedyR

    SpeedyR SE in the SE

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,292
    Location:
    ATL, GA
    thanks for the replies. Dan your article on the 276c and the montana was what swayed me towards the montana. I just started to use Basecamp and figured if I was going to have to relearn all the mapping and such I may as well start from scratch and move to the montana. Just making sure I have all the bases covered before I order one.

    I guess one other question, not a big deal but I have one of the RAM ball mounts with the round plate that says is AMPS compatible. I know gpscity sells a more rectangular mounting plate for the RAM system. and difference anyone has seen between the two or a recommendation? I have a spare round one already but it sounds like it's just a cosmetic thing (i.e. the rectangle one fits the dimensions of the Garmin mount better)...
    #13
  14. DRTBYK

    DRTBYK All Things GPS

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Oddometer:
    7,162
    Location:
    47°50′15.8″N, 119°56′21.9″W
    The round and square RAM Ball AMPS mounts are both compatible - as you say, the square one looks better. :evil

    I do not recommend the "plastic" RAM Ball or Octagon Button Mounts. I have had one of each fail (brake) on me - the Montana was safely tethered to my bike.

    Cheers,
    #14