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sub-Saharan Africa Topics specific to sub-Saharan Africa. (Includes all countries South of 17 degrees latitude)
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  #1  
Old 18 Apr 2008
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Best GPS for Sub-Sahara area

Greatings,

Any advices regarding brands of GPS best suited for the Sub-Sahara area and motorcycle riding? I guess it boils down to which one is weather-proof and can accomodate the best map of the area? Any advices would be most welcome! (Sorry if this question has been posted already; I could not find any info in this regard after a number of searches, but I admit that I lack experience in this type of venues...) Thank you!

Helene
Rwanda
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Old 18 Apr 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hbaribeau View Post
Any advices regarding brands of GPS best suited for the Sub-Sahara area and motorcycle riding? I guess it boils down to which one is weather-proof and can accomodate the best map of the area? Any advices would be most welcome! (Sorry if this question has been posted already; I could not find any info in this regard after a number of searches, but I admit that I lack experience in this type of venues...)
Possibly this should be in the Navigation forum?

Numerous post there on the 'best' GPS.

http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...s-compass-gps/

The advice is

FIRST chose your map .. different maps go with different brands of GPS .. they are not compatable!

Then chose the GPS.

---------------------------

May be this post can become "best GPS maps for Sub Sahara"?

I'm a Garmin user ... so to my knowledge .. you want to look up 'Tracks 4 Africa' and see what they have. Tracks4Africa - Mapping Africa, one day at a time


Sub Sahara covers a large area . 'Wanderlust' world map may be an addition. Smellybiker's Wanderlust Worldmap

May be you could be more specific on what countries you want? There are some other sources .. but they need you to do some work to make them compatable with Garmins software 'Mapsource'.
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Last edited by Frank Warner; 18 Apr 2008 at 00:29.
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Old 18 Apr 2008
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Difficult to answer which is the best gps for sub saharan use as there's so many variables but I can tell you what I've done. On my last trip to the area I went with an old Garmin GPS2+ which will do lat/lon and not much else apart from waypoint to waypoint navigation. I also took loads of paper maps - IGN 1: 1,000,000 mainly, as well as tourist type ones. I only got lost once and 2 mins of cross referencing lat/lon from the gps to the map identified the error.

As soon as I got back planning for the next trip started and a gps upgrade was part of it but as you've probably found gps mapping of SSA is thin on the ground. Having looked at all of the Garmins I concluded there were no suitable maps available (although this was 2 yrs ago and things seem to have improved slightly since then). There are however plenty of paper maps and stuff like the Russian military maps available in electronic form so it became a question of what hardware is needed to run these.
I ended up buying a Mio 550 pda and running Ozi explorer and another programme, GPS Tuner, on it. The 550 has a gps receiver built in and will hand the position data on to whatever mapping software is running.
The Russian military series are available on the web in Ozi format and GPS Tuner will run maps as jpeg image files that come from scanned paper maps (or even Google Earth) after calibration. It will also run normal TomTom sat nav for Euro use so that gets used until Morocco when a change of sd card gives me the Ozi/GPST maps.

PDAs are pretty fragile though, particularly given the sort of hammering everything gets on a long bike trip and that has been a consideration. The old GPS2+ was just fixed to the front rack with a bungie strap and survived rain, sandstorms, falls etc without major problems. The pda has had to be protected inside an Otterbox which has then had to be modified for power cable access and screen washout in bright sunlight and a downside is that this makes for a fairly large lump on the handlebars. So far (around a year) it's survived and works well. The only problem is with my ageing eyes being able to focus on the road and the screen with the same pair of glasses!
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Old 18 Apr 2008
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A Garmin 276c, fitted with a 512 MB Data card, loaded with Tracks 4 Africa maps. You'll also need a laptop for route planning and loading new maps onto the GPS.
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