Top site free Garmin GPS maps

Discussion in 'GPS Tracks - Mexico, Central & South America' started by dare2go, Jan 11, 2008.

  1. Supergringo

    Supergringo Hablar, bla bla bla.

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    Hi All,
    After riding from Argentina home to Los Angeles, I wrote a review of the maps I used in Central and South America on my blog. You can find that write-up here:

    http://www.northbymotorbike.com/?p=675

    I hope this is helpful for anyone planning a similar trip.

    Cheers!
    #21
  2. SS in Vzla.

    SS in Vzla. Totally Normal? I'm not!

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    Thanks for the useful review
    #22
  3. Wander4Days

    Wander4Days Where am I?

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    I was hearing good reviews on CenRut's Central America maps but couldn't find the download for the IMG file. (All link downloaded a .rar file that had PDFs and an EXE file but no IMG.) Then I found this link which also had a Mac map that i was looking for. So far everything seems good. We'll see when I am lost in the mountains of Guatemala how it works though:D

    http://www.cenrut.org/adw/over.htm
    #23
  4. Yannis

    Yannis Adventurer

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    looking a peace place to stay on this planet
    http://openmtbmap.org/download/

    you can find all the countrys on this link

    from Africa, to South America, to Canada, to Europe....

    I just made a mistake, i loaded a map on my GPS Nuvi 1410 from Map source, and the original one (Southern Africa), desapear!!!

    so becare, and tell me how to do, if there is a solution.

    thanks

    y
    #24
  5. ezo

    ezo Ezo

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  6. Seppo

    Seppo Been here awhile

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    hy

    i use this site for my maps: http://garmin.openstreetmap.nl/

    you can either choose a pre-defined map for every country, or select the tiles manually to build your own map. what i like about it is, that you get a download link whisch shows many different formats of the map, a windows version with installer, a mac version and a gmapsupp.img to put directly to your gps (60csx in my case)

    cheers
    josef
    #26
  7. csustewy

    csustewy Motojero

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    +1 on that site. Good level of detail, points of interest, & routability. Best of all it's FREE, just like this thread title states.

    :spam
    #27
  8. The Chief (tm)

    The Chief (tm) Adventurer

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    It's been quite a while since I updated my GPS maps, so am wondering if Seppo or csustewy can answer what will undoubtedly be a ridiculous line of questioning.

    In investigating mapping options for an upcoming trip down through mainland Mexico, I dug through http://garmin.openstreetmap.nl/ , downloaded the "osm_generic_windows" .exe file, and also the appropriate "osm_generic_gmapsupp" .img file.

    Running the .exe placed a bunch of .img files, a .mdx, a .tbr, and an _mdr file into a new "Programs/Garmin/Maps/OSM generic routable" directory.

    But the "osm_generic_gmapsupp" which came over is just one big .img file.

    So, now what? Do I merely copy the big .img file onto the GPS' SD card, or do I have to do something with the files in the other directory? (There doesn't seem to be an executable in there, so I'm not sure what the next step is if it has to do with those.) Any and all advice appreciated!
    #28
  9. csustewy

    csustewy Motojero

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    Not a ridiculous line of questioning at all. I don´t have a computer anymore (long story), nor much time online, but here´s a start from what I remember:

    I only ever used that mapsupp.img file. Place it on the GPS SD card in a file folder that´s named the exact same thing (GARMIN or something like that) as where your current mapsupp.img file lives. You can place the new .img file in the same folder, but be very careful with your file management, because if you delete that original file, or copy over it, it won´t exist anymore. Use whatever system you want to keep it organized, rename folders (which worked for me, so I didn´t change file names, I just changed the folder names to remember which file was inside), rename files etc. The GPS will read the .img file in that one folder.

    Now, with that said, fancier GPS devices have all sorts of nifty ways to load maps, pieces of maps - all of that is far beyond me. I think that the .exe file can be used in combination with Basecamp or similar program to piece together the map files you want, but I always just used the tile or country selections on that openstreetmaps site to get an .img file of the map that worked for me.

    Hope these hints help. There are far better experts with GPS than me, though, so keep asking around...
    #29
  10. The Chief (tm)

    The Chief (tm) Adventurer

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    Hey Motojero,

    Nah, all good advice, even for your current lack of a PC...

    I did, in fact, check what was on the SD card I'm using now (for North America), and it was a mapsupp.img (or whatever) file -- meaning, it has the same name. I thought, "Oh, why don't I just swap them out and see if the GPS recognizes the new maps," but then I realized that I'm not in Mexico right now, so there wouldn't be any way to really "test" the swap, right?

    Although now that I think about it, maybe I could ask it to find a location somewhere in Mexico, and if it returns a list of possible choices (for city name, street name, hotel name, or whatever), then that *should* mean that it's reading the new file correctly, even though it probably couldn't create a route to it, 'cuz it wouldn't "know" where it was right now here in the States. I'll play around with it.

    But the point is, it was helpful to know that all I needed was that .img file. Thanks for taking the time to clarify!
    #30
  11. csustewy

    csustewy Motojero

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    Happy to help. And your test idea should give you a glimpse of what's loaded on your GPS.

    Most importantly - enjoy Mexico!
    #31
  12. The Chief (tm)

    The Chief (tm) Adventurer

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    OK, so I swapped out the .img files on the SD card (making darned sure to protect the existing, US-wide file against accidental overwrite) and checked it out. And in fact, with the Mexico .img file on there, the GPS does recognize locations and offer POI's from that country.

    When I tried some auto-routing (e.g., from Zacatecas to a particular point in Puerto Vallarta), the results were a little weird: some segments were turn-by-turn, whereas others were literally just straight lines from point-to-point, drawn with no regard for the actual roads. I don't think I'll worry about that too much just yet, since it seems that the map itself was present, so at least I'll "know where I am". The thing that's a bit clunky is that if the .img files have to have the same name, then I'll need to carry two SD cards and swap them out once I approach the border, 'cuz my unit (Garmin C320) doesn't appear to offer a utility through which to select a particular map.

    Although now that I think about THAT, I could easily test it by renaming one of the files, and seeing if I can find a screen where I can choose between them...

    Thanks again for weighing in!
    #32
  13. The Chief (tm)

    The Chief (tm) Adventurer

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    OK, in case anyone was following this one, I was unsuccessful in convincing the GPS (a Garmin 320c) to allow me to select from among more than one map file.

    Both the existing US file, and the Mexico file I downloaded from the website Seppo mentioned (http://garmin.openstreetmap.nl/) are named gmapsupp.img. I renamed them to gmapsuppUS and gmapsuppMX, respectively, placed them both inside the "garmin" directory on the SD card, and fired up the unit. A splash screen appeared and directed me to use the proprietary PC-related map uploader (MapWizard IIRC) before it could continue. I imagine this suggests that the unit's Flash ROM (or whatever) is programmed to look for the file gmapsupp.img, and nothing else, however similarly-named it may be.

    This means that I'll have to carry the MX gmapsupp file on a separate SD card, and swap out the cards when I cross the border. Not the end of the world, for sure. And not that I'll be tracking it quite that closely, but I wonder if the unit will know to continue to record travel time and distance as if it were the same trip, even if the data card has been changed. We shall see! ETD December 4.
    #33
  14. The Chief (tm)

    The Chief (tm) Adventurer

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    If anyone cares, the GPS unit maintained its accounting for both parts of the day which saw me cross the border, meaning it "knew" how far I had traveled in total, even though I changed out the SD cards in mid-trip.

    Also, once in MX, it was able to locate addresses and data points, and generate point-to-point directions, with the same imperfect and occasionally infuriating "accuracy".

    As imperfect as it was, it was good to have, because I couldn't find a map in a scale that would have been *really* useful, so using both the map and the GPS usually made for positive results.

    Note use of the word "usually". As always, YMMV. Be safe and enjoy!
    #34
  15. BlueLghtning

    BlueLghtning Riding is my passion

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    Hey Chief, you are right that it looks for certain map images like gmapsupp.img, but it is possible that other names are compatible, even a gmapsup1.img. You might play around with this for future use and see if you can get more than one map and it recognize both? I would make sure you are upgraded to the latest firmware for your GPS too. I think gmapsupp & gmapsup1 are used to read maps from an SD card.

    These names work on some other GPS's (gmapprom.img, gmapprom1.img, gmapsupp.img, gmapsup1.img, gmapoem.img)

    I found this thread that might help you - http://forum.openstreetmap.org/viewtopic.php?pid=301968
    #35
  16. The Chief (tm)

    The Chief (tm) Adventurer

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    BlueLightning,

    Hey, good heads-up on the naming conventions and the link. I hadn't thought to experiment with any names other than whatever it was that I had tried, but now I will!
    #36