The Etrex is a very handy and tough unit. Below follows the text of a "GPS Adventure" I submitted to Garmin, although I don't think they ever bothered to use it! I don't think you can lay the blame for poor base-maps with the Etrex.
Here's my story:
Had my ETrex Legend for six months, and am extremely pleased with it. Took it on a motorcycle tour through Italy to Sicily recently, partly with the intention of logging photograph locations as Waypoints. Unfortunately, after loading it with the location of the Colliseum after reading about the chaos of navigating through Rome, it blew out from under my motorcycle windscreen at 100mph on the Autostrada just north of Rome (don't know why, it had been OK for 1500 miles). I wasn't sure whether it was even worth stopping to look for it, but I did and was amazed to find it in one piece on the hard shoulder. I switched it on, and it initially appeared fine, but unfortunately the antenna had become loose/disconnected so it couldn't "find" any satellites. I spoke to Garmin UK, and they said that if it only needed something "pushing in" they wouldn't even charge for a repair, and if they were unable to repair it they would supply a replacement at cost (some 1/3 of retail price)! A day or two later I booked in early to a hotel as it was raining, and decided to split the unit and try and get it functional. Without any tools, I managed to split the unit and reaffix the self-adhesive antenna, and the unit was working again. Unfortunately by this time the display had developed a crack which wasn't initially apparent, so it wasn't perfect. Anyway, it was usable, and on my return to the UK I sent the unit to Garmin, who have sent me a replacement at cost.
I can offer nothing but praise both for the durability of the unit (how many mobile phones would have survived bouncing down a motorway at 100mph?), and also the generous spirit of Garmin in offering to repair or replace at cost. I would have absolutely no hesitation in buying another Garmin GPS or recommending them - First Class!
[This message has been edited by IanC (edited 01 September 2002).]