So after struggling to read maps, use Google Maps on the phone and plan routes on the bike for what seems like forever, I finally decided to join the 21st century and get my self a bike Sat Nav.
This was pretty straightforward really – the package I purchased from Halfords came with it’s own ‘out front’ style mount, which simply clamps to your bars with a screw (incidentally this didn’t fit on my bars due to my bar mounted light, now installed on my GFs bike), and also comes with a shim for slimmer style bars.
As all Garmin style product this then uses the ‘quarter turn’ style mount to attach the device to the mounting.
It’s a really simple method that works well.
I did find one problem though, in that when wearing my flourescent yellow riding jacket, the reflectivity of the screen makes it hard to read. Mainly due to where it’s situated on my stem and the angle it’s on, but it’s not impossible to see.
From the Halfords website:
With round trip routing and Garmin connect there are more ways to find new rides with the Garmin Edge Touring Special Edition GPS Cycle Computer with Out-front Bike Mount & ProtectiveCase – Exclusive to Halfords. Simple to use, you can keep track of your real time stats during your ride to make sure you stay on target.
- Guide your ride – new simple user interface
- Real time customisable data screen
- Tough, water resistant, compact and lightweight design
- On and off road navigation with the Garmin cycle map
- Round trip routing with 3 ride options
- Share and save routes with Garmin Connect
As I’m sure you are aware, there is a version which has a few extra ‘features’ on such as heart rate monitor and ANT+ compatibility, but given that I don’t need those this is the basic version.
So when the doctors finally allowed me back on the bike, off I go to play with my new toy to see if I could use the new toy as well as the old one (I managed to get an Edge 200 for £30!).
After a brief fiddle with the buttons and the settings, I managed to record my stats with the usual ease (basically you press the ‘Start Timer’ button and set off), and comparing stats from my previous rides seems to be as accurate as ever too.
The mapping functions is the whole point of this unit though, so I set off from my office having told it I wanted to go home. The route it chose wasn’t was what I would have chosen, so all well and good there then.
After purposely getting lost in a previously unknown estate I again told it to route me home. Again this proved no problem, but I did manage to accidentally stop the recording of the stats, so statistically I’m about 4 miles short this month. It seems that the stats side and the mapping sides of this can be used independently, though I’m not sure if that’s a good thing.
Would I really want to navigate and not know the stats for the ride? Perhaps some people do…
Still, my own stupidity aside, I’m loving this gadget more than the previous incarnation. The routing functions seem to be about right for my preferred style of riding – I have read some reports of people having some problems with that though.
Now I’ve downloaded the Garmin Basecamp software too and entered my regular stops and clients as waypoints, and a few regular routes, giving me more options to waste time on the bike.
I’ve yet to test the round trip function, where you can tell the unit to calculate a route of X miles for you, but that’s for when I’m medically allowed to ride properly again (looking like after Christmas now!).