New Bicamapas Atlas GPS

Discussion in 'GPS Tracks - Mexico, Central & South America' started by CMWoody, Apr 6, 2006.

  1. climberevan

    climberevan planning the next journey

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    i just ordered and received the entire set, and will be headed to Mexico next week. i'll have paper maps as well, and i speak Spanish pretty well, so i can ask directions.

    mostly i use the GPS to get me way, way off of the beaten track. the US Topo '08 served me well in this regard, and i hope the Bicimaps maps will help. i don't expect total accuracy, and rarely use auto-routing (i did just switch to a Zumo from an Etrex, so i may try it out a bit). so far the maps look pretty good, but not anywhere even remotely as good as the real Garmin ones of the US. lots of roads are just sitting in the middle of nowhere, with no connections to others, and there are many dead-ends where i know the road continues.

    when driving to Costa Rica a couple of years ago i noticed that when i was, say, 40 or 50 miles from the nearest paved road out in the boonies, the locals didn't know what village was next, and were almost useless for directions. in some cases they just made stuff up, and led us astray. with a 300 mile range on the KLR, though, i'm happy to make several wrong turns.

    so, i'll be doing a TR of the journey as it happens (whenever i can find either wireless or a place to plug in to ethernet), so i'll give a detailed review of the accuracy or inaccuracy of Bicimapas's maps. i considered not using the GPS at all, but i figured if they are accurate or close to it, it would be a huge advantage.
    #61
  2. strikingviking

    strikingviking Long timer

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    Three nights ago I loaded my Zumo with the complete set after surfing this site from my home in Mazatlan--couldn't wait to hit the road to test the system. Now southbound on the coastal route midway through Oaxaca and expecting to arrive here for Christmas. South of Jalisco between the heavy holiday traffic and unusually high number of military checkpoints, I can barely blast out of second gear but there are always an abundance of roadside cafes for afternoon breaks.

    Dialing into the delightful quirkiness of rural Mexico usually takes a few days but I've got my finger back on the pulse and have found that old familiar sweet-spot of tuning into the rhythm of the chaos. After two nights of riding until 10:00PM (foolishly) I'm back on track and will post a product report from the next Internet cafe.
    #62
  3. strikingviking

    strikingviking Long timer

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    I just finished a two week ride from Mazatlan, down the Pacific Coast states of Jalisco, Oaxaca, Chiapas and back up through the Central Highlands. The BiciMapas software worked well when using auto-routing for short distances but not so well for long distances because you have to know in advance which of a dozen other Mexican cities with the same names to select. But that is not necessarily the fault of the software.

    With its limited fuel capacity, the HP2, even hauling a spare gas can is a hassle when trying to plan fuel stops. The gas station locater and auto-routing system at the touch of a button was a Godsend numerous times, allowing longer riding between top-offs. And the detail was amazing while always showing my exact position on the actual road, something that the standard Garmin software does not. Their version of WorldMap often indicates the user position in parallel but slightly off to either side of the road.

    Once in Chiapas I rode twenty miles up a series of dirt mountain roads all clearly identified on the GPS, even tiny towns with populations of less than a few hundred showed up on the screen when zooming.

    Living in Mexico, I can use the topo data for other purposes but since it just clutters up small GPS screens with non-critical data, I'd recommend against buying it. All in all, this is the Mexico map software that we've been waiting for. A new upgrade will be available soon that may address auto-routing irregularities.
    #63
  4. PhilSpace

    PhilSpace The Ex-Gov

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    SV, which GPS are you using? If it shows you off to the side of the road, depending on your GPS, you can change the DATUM and it might shift things a little and take care of the world map problem.
    #64
  5. strikingviking

    strikingviking Long timer

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    Hey Phil--now using a Zumo 550.
    #65
  6. PhilSpace

    PhilSpace The Ex-Gov

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    Sorry SV, not much I can help you with on the changing DATUM's or supporting the topo on the zumo. There is one "tool" that can be installed on the zumo to make the topo appear transparent over the bicamaps however. I'm playing with it now, it's not Garmin, but a hack.
    #66
  7. strikingviking

    strikingviking Long timer

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    Thanks again Phil. The datum is okay because with Bicimapas the rider position is right on the money and I guess that since I would not use the topo on the GPS, I'll just delete it. I can still use that data on a computer though. Any idea if Garmin will ever be Mac-friendly? Using my neighbors PC is getting old.
    #67
  8. m0to

    m0to Under the Big Hard Sun

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    Hey SV. Garmin still isn't mac friendly :-/

    I'm using VMWare's Fusion with an XP partition on it to load up my maps. It generally works pretty good. Unfortunately you have to eat up about 5gb of your HD for the XP partition with Mapsource installed. Its pretty easy to do. It just costs you another $59 for Fusion and then you need an XP license. (Linky to Best deal on Fusion)

    I concur on the autorouting. Sometimes there is a bad link or something on the roads. I was curious and told it to take me home from Cataviña and it said it was 1386 miles. It routed me from there, to Ensenada, San Felipe, Mexicali, then back to Tecate :D

    I'm going to see if Alberto wants to know when a road is hosed on the map so they can fix it in the future. Otherwise, I thought it was pretty spot on!

    I kept the topo, but I wish the Zumo could toggle it on or off. That would be nice. It was helpful in seeing what kind of terrain the dirtroads were going through. I have to admit it had a surprising number of 'trails' or as we know them 'dirt roads' on the map.
    #68
  9. strikingviking

    strikingviking Long timer

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    Indeed, I was amazed at the detail but pinpointing gas stations with auto-routing eliminated a lot of worry. I did note and mark a few new stations that did not appear. Maybe we should figure a way to upgrade our own GPS with that data by posting those locations somewhere here?
    #69
  10. PhilSpace

    PhilSpace The Ex-Gov

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    That's what this is all about. When you come back, post your cool waypoints for services and stuff here as well as your tracks. We are working on a way to link it into the trip planning forum. Maybe someday we will get our shit together :dunno
    #70
  11. strikingviking

    strikingviking Long timer

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    Oh so you guys collect interesting waypoints? Not that I ever went inside but I just happened to have logged the coordinates of every brothel that I could locate while wandering around the planet.:evil
    #71
  12. PhilSpace

    PhilSpace The Ex-Gov

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    :lol2 Bring it. :deal
    #72
  13. strikingviking

    strikingviking Long timer

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    Dear Customer
    BiciMapas is pleased to announce the release of version 2.0 of the Mexico GPS Atlas. This new version incorporates new features, performance improvements as well as bug fixes. We would like to express our gratitude to all who provided valuable feedback as well as suggestions for improvement. We made sure to incorporate all of them.

    New Features
    Added street detail for the remaining State Capital cities:
    Aguascalientes, Colima, Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Durango, Chilpancingo, Morelia, Tepic, Ciudad Victoria, Tlaxcala, Xalapa, Zacatecas, Saltillo, Culiacán

    Added the following cities as a suggested by several customers:
    San Luis Río Colorado, Batopilas, Urique

    Added all the trails that match our Exploration Map series so they may also be seen in the GPS as a complement to the printed versions. All these trails feature autorouting capability. Also, in these areas we added 20 meter contour intervals. This includes Valle de Bravo, and the zone within Chiluca, Cuernavaca and the Nevado de Toluca Volcanoe.

    Added new POIs such as Gas Stations Hotels, Restaurants, Banks and so forth in several cities. Also several toll booths in the highways network were updated.

    IMPROVEMENTS
    New file structure to ease identification and zone selection
    Simplified street search
    Improvements in POI search including airports and bus stations

    Added names to several POI that did not had it.

    Improved main city visualization at outer zoom levels

    Topo lines will start to show at lower zoom levels to prevent screen clutter

    Minor town will start to show at lower zoom levels to prevent screen clutter

    Standard naming improved to ease search functions

    The state names were standardized to facilitate search functions

    Updated highways network

    The road classifications was improved to better display them in the screen without sudden type changes

    Fixes

    Removed the ocean section that was showing in Puerto Vallarta

    Fixed routing errors in the City of Guadalajara

    Fixed routing errors in highways numbers: 15, 200 in Oaxaca, 23, 54, 40, 80, 175, 45 and 147

    Fixed street layout in Mexico City for :Reforma and Periférico intersection, Palmas and Periférico intersection, Reforma and Circuito Interior Intersection, Periférico, Viaducto. Added overpasses in the Santa Fe area.

    Fixed street position gap in the cities of: Oaxaca, San Miguel de Allende, San Luis Potosí, Mexicali and Torreon.

    Added Tunnels in Guanajuato.

    Fixed street layout in San Luis Potosi

    Fixed layout in the Toluca and Queretaro highways.

    Added missing section at the Hermosillo Periferico.

    Several fixes and bug corrections as a result of customer feedback

    We are developing new instructions for installation, street and POI search and several other related subjects which will be made available through the webpage.

    NOTE TO NUVI, STREETPILOT AND ZUMO USERS

    The City search function may in some cases not to display the State in which the city is located. This performance was there in previous versions of the map This is due to changes in the receivers’ firmware. We are working to solve this issue as soon as possible and an update will be made available at that time.

    Download and installation

    The installation process is the same you used with the one you have now. This 2.0 version will overwrite the previous one. The current unlock key you have will work with this update and there is no need to do the unlock process again.

    1. Download and save the map in your PC

    2. Make sure Mapsource is closed

    3. Double click the Map installer and follow the instructions. When done, close the installer.

    4. Run Mapsource

    5. On the “Select a Product” drop down menu, make sure that “Mexico GPS Atlas 2.0” is selected

    6. The map will show on the screen ready to be loaded in the GPS.


    Should you need further assistance please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Thank you

    Alberto Najera

    www.bicimapas.com.mx
    #73
  14. m0to

    m0to Under the Big Hard Sun

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    Checking it out right now! Reminds me, gonna search through the threads to see if anyone is putting interesting POI's for Mexico, CA & SA.
    #74
  15. m0to

    m0to Under the Big Hard Sun

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    By the way. If you download Bobcat for OS X and use the conversion tool on a PC to convert the maps for Mac use the bicimapas 1.2 works. Trying it on v2 right now.
    #75
  16. Lone Rider

    Lone Rider Registered User

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    So, y'all are saying that it now actually shows more than the coastline?
    #76
  17. m0to

    m0to Under the Big Hard Sun

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    There's a coastline? :-)

    Not sure if you're talking about the maps in general, or via Bobcat. Both show probably too much crap really. At first I liked the topo, but now I don't...
    #77
  18. gageezer

    gageezer Been here awhile

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    And it seems much better than before. The map of San Miguel is only off about 10 ft. instead of 100 yards as before. I'm going to test it out next week on my trip to Guatemala.

    Does anyone have advice on getting around Mexico City? I'll be coming down 57 and I plan to go around the E. side and have heard that traffic can be horrendous at certain times.
    #78
  19. strikingviking

    strikingviking Long timer

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    Hola amigo. I'm not sure of the route around Mexico City but there is one and of course, the best time to navigate Mexican cities is early in the morning. Bicimapas works great there too. When using auto-routing in Mexico City, not only did the best route appear but the software was designed to recognize which streets were one-way.
    #79
  20. gageezer

    gageezer Been here awhile

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    I think I've loaded the whole BiCiMapas to my Zumo 550 but how can I check to be sure? When I open the "Map Info" page I can only see a little of the different maps.

    Also, where is the map loaded? Is it on the Garmin or on the SD chip? I've looked at both on "My Computer" and it doesn't show up, even though it shows up on "Map Info."
    #80