GARMIN eTrex Vista HCx

Discussion in 'West – California, the desert southwest and whatev' started by Off Limits, Dec 24, 2009.

  1. Off Limits

    Off Limits Banned

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    anyone have one of these? i just got one from santa with a bar mount and all. but its my first gps. i know shit about these things. any help will be "helpful"
    #1
  2. dyvking

    dyvking ahead of his flamin star

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    I have one. I use it for hiking, peddling and paddling, but the screen's way too small for it to be of use to me on the motorcycle. I use a larger screen that does autorouting for that purpose.

    Best bet to start is to go find a comfortable spot outside (where the unit can see the satellites) and start going through the manual. It will take 15-20 minutes on startup the very first time, but is nearly instant after that.

    You can set up several "pages" displaying different types of information, and you can customize each of those pages as to what and how you want the data displayed. e.g.. you can have a "map page" that also shows distance to next waypoint and current speed, plus a 'data page' that shows odometer, elevation, and distance to destination, etc.

    When you think you have it mostly figured out.. find excuses to use it everytime you go outdoors for a walk, ride etc so that you will know how it works before you HAVE to depend on it.

    The unit is reasonably waterproof, and batteries last 25-30 hours of continuous usage.
    #2
  3. johngil

    johngil Reseda, CA

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    If you will be using it on your off road bike, then buy the RAM mount for it.
    Even w/ the RAM mount a tether is a good idea. There are lots of GPS units laying out in the desert.
    Pick up Topo 08
    #3
  4. Off Limits

    Off Limits Banned

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    thanks, guess i will just start playing with it
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  5. dunerat

    dunerat WTF?

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    waaaa?:huh
    #5
  6. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv

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    there's a section here on the adv website dedicated to gps....check out the link and don't be shy to post your questions or needs.

    hope this helps.

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=37
    #6
  7. Bullseye

    Bullseye Mr. Bad Example

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    I have a very similar Garmin unit that I used on all rides.... works great! Yes, there are better units with larger displays, but I love the little Garmins. You can pop them off the bars and throw it in your pocket... take it for a hike, etc.
    Regarding the small screen...
    If I am following a track on the bike, I just zoom way in.
    As Johngil mentioned, don't use the wimpy Garmin mount off-road. Get a RAM mount, they are very affordable, very adjustable and more secure.
    The only problem I have had with the small Garmins is that they sometimes power-off. I think it is due to the batteries jiggling lose. The newer units seem to do better.
    Ad Dyvking mentions, play around with it on hikes or in your yard to get the hang of it. They are very intuitive after a little practice.
    #7
  8. johngil

    johngil Reseda, CA

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    Once you decide you want to ride w/ the unit on the bike, a power cable from the bike's battery is a nice way to go.
    Good luck!
    #8
  9. Salsa

    Salsa Been here awhile

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    You CAN'T power that GPS directly from your bike. This unit needs 3.2 volts and does not like 12 volts. YOu can get 12 - 3.2 volt converters.

    Don
    #9
  10. johngil

    johngil Reseda, CA

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    That is a downside for this model I guess. My 60csx will run on anything.(not quite, but close)

    Garmin does list a part #010-10563-00 for this model w/ a 12 volt plug.
    #10
  11. Off Limits

    Off Limits Banned

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    book say batteries will last 25-32 hours. so ni big deal on powering from the bike. its funny just because ive never used one before. im more of a " i think its this way" type of dirt bike rider.
    #11
  12. johngil

    johngil Reseda, CA

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    It's not so much how long the batteries will last, it's that some units shut off under rough conditions. When powered up through a cable, the unit won't shut off.
    Often times the batteries can be wedged in tighter to prevent shutting down.
    #12
  13. bisbonian

    bisbonian Long timer

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    I've used the stand eTrex for years on my bike.

    You can use the batteries no problem, I found that I needed to jam a bit of paper underneath the contacts to keep everything connected so the unit wouldn't shut off; in addition I would stick a piece of electrical tape on the batteries and casing to try aiding in keeping the batteries in place. This worked well for me.

    You can purchase a 12-volt cable that has the resistor built in so you can power it off the bike. I went through 2 of them that wouldn't hold up to the vibration and ended up using batteries so choose carefully as not all cables are built the same.
    #13
  14. Off Limits

    Off Limits Banned

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    Yep, the thing was a pos and worked once before the vibes killed it. It shut off just like you guys said. It's been sitting in he drawer ever since. 2 years GPS free!
    #14
  15. dieselcruiserhead

    dieselcruiserhead Long timer

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    Holy reply to old threads...

    The hcx vista has been my gps for the last two years. Works great. My only complaint is it can't load more than 1 track at a time. I plan on updating to the 78 shortly but again, it's been great. Completely fine for off road style GPS...


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #15