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Sat Nav maybe... that I can use as a trip meter

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Henry Brown18/06/2021 17:23:31
509 forum posts
106 photos

It me asking for advice again!

I am joining a classic car tour in the next few weeks and could do with a device (not necessarily a Sat Nav) that can be used to count down to junctions. We are provided with a road book, a bit like road rallying, that has distances between the junctions.

As the wife will be operating it what ever I get needs to b easy to use with reasonable sized buttons.

I've looked for rally type devices and they cost to much for my occasional use, so any suggestions would be appreciated.

noel shelley18/06/2021 17:46:47
1018 forum posts
19 photos

I would say use a sat nav but NOT a tomtom IF you can find an old navman ! The way the info is displaid and it's use is very simple. The only let down is the connector which is rather poor. The buttons are of good size. The maps may be out of date but roads don't change that much - the cost of map updates is often as much as a new unit. I used to use one as a pocket map - the detail showed even farm tracks. New to this techknology I was astounded, and due to a blocked road was sent down a farm track, it got me to my destination on time ! Good luck Noel.

Howard Lewis18/06/2021 17:54:03
5750 forum posts
13 photos

Both the Tom Toms that we have had, countdown to road junctions / roundabouts, from about half a mile out

After quarter mile, it counts down in yards, in 5 yard decrements..

It won't tell you how far you've come, but how much further you have to reach your destination. But it will tell you  road / street names as you approach them.

Sometimes the updates get a bit confused.  On the A14 it it will tell you stay on the A14 for 50+ miles as you approach the M6 junction, but once you are on will admit to being on M6.

So don't believe all that it tells you

(Sometimes "Turn Right" actually means take the corner! )

With ANY Sat Nav, be wary of post codes for a destination.

In town, you may only need to choose between two houses.  In the country, you may have the choice of twenty square miles!

The map display (Larger selected by a touch on the screen ) shows which way the road bends. It tells you which exit to take from a roundabout, BUT needs to be kept updated.

The "third exit" might be new one since the last update, leading you into a housing estate rather than onto the slip road for the A!!


Edited By Howard Lewis on 18/06/2021 18:02:28

mark costello 118/06/2021 20:26:32
685 forum posts
12 photos

I have a Garmin and occasionally it gets the spoken "turn left or right" directions backwards from the picture. SWMBO has heard this to confirm.

pgk pgk18/06/2021 20:33:07
2431 forum posts
293 photos

There are several free phone app maps... try a few out.


JasonB18/06/2021 20:35:22
22011 forum posts
2539 photos
1 articles

There are a few phone apps that will act as a trip. Basically hit the trip at a junction and the phone's GPS will total up the distance then wifey just needs to do the maths by subtracting the trip distance from the road book distances and tell you how far to next junction. You may be able to enter the distances and get it to count down which would make it even simpler. look for "rally trip apps"

Edit, beaten to it, should have given a shorter answer

Edited By JasonB on 18/06/2021 20:36:16

Grindstone Cowboy18/06/2021 20:35:43
800 forum posts
62 photos

If you have a smartphone (cries of "No! Never!" from some) that has GPS, then you could do worse than look at Waze. It's essentially replaced my satnav.


Edit - beaten to it by faster typists!

Edited By Grindstone Cowboy on 18/06/2021 20:36:29

Paul Lousick18/06/2021 23:32:13
1901 forum posts
673 photos

I would recommend a Garmin satnav. Had mine for 7+ years with no problems. Here in Australia, it comes with free map upgrades for local maps and also for other countries.


Edited By Paul Lousick on 18/06/2021 23:34:16

Henry Brown19/06/2021 12:24:49
509 forum posts
106 photos

Thanks for all the replies. I have an anchient TomTom sat nav that won't do the countdown from point to point and having looked at others it seems they are focused on using directions to a named destination rather than just measuring distance travelled. I also have a Garmin Montana (for geocaching) that can do the job but is pretty long winded.
I think pgk and Jason have hit the nail on the head, I must admit I hadn't thought about using a phone, with one of the rally apps. We have gps enabled smart phones and as it will be used in the car it can be connected to power, I just need to see which is the easiest to use.

Martin Connelly19/06/2021 13:31:45
2017 forum posts
214 photos

An Android based pad may do what you want on a bigger screen. Worth considering if you don't want to be staring at a small screen in a moving car.

Martin C

pgk pgk19/06/2021 14:49:34
2431 forum posts
293 photos
Posted by Martin Connelly on 19/06/2021 13:31:45:

An Android based pad may do what you want on a bigger screen. Worth considering if you don't want to be staring at a small screen in a moving car.

Martin C

Android emulators are available for windows .. Bluestacks for instance so no need for an android device if a win laptop (for instance) is handy


peak420/06/2021 02:09:46
1597 forum posts
172 photos

I'd check out the event regs. first and make sure GPS based systems aren't prohibited.


Gerard O'Toole20/06/2021 07:16:22
128 forum posts
10 photos
Posted by peak4 on 20/06/2021 02:09:46:

I'd check out the event regs. first and make sure GPS based systems aren't prohibited.


I would endorse this advice. I have no experience with car events but on any classic/vintage motorcycle events I have participated in the use of sat navs would be prohibited.

Is there any reason you cannot use the cars own odometer ? (it is what I always use( on the motorcycle)

Henry Brown20/06/2021 10:19:58
509 forum posts
106 photos

Bill, Gerald, this is a tour, a non competitive event, but thanks for the heads up!

I did check the final instructions, if fact it was there I saw information on how to calibrate the mileometer using a stretch of road near the start of the event that made me think about a trip meter, there's no mention of not using a sat nav.

My car speedo reads about 7-8 mph slow at 30mph hence the use of my old TomTom for speed limits, which works fine, but doesn't give me the required info for point to point measurement. At some stage the engine and box will be coming out and I can change the drive gear then, but that won't be before next Sunday!

peak420/06/2021 22:26:54
1597 forum posts
172 photos

Could you lash up something using a cycle speedo/odometer that uses a magnetic sensor.
If it's not competitive, wheelspin shouldn't be a problem.


Speedy Builder521/06/2021 08:05:43
2500 forum posts
196 photos

Unless I have missed it, enter "Waypoints" on your satnav ??

JasonB21/06/2021 08:52:36
22011 forum posts
2539 photos
1 articles
Posted by Speedy Builder5 on 21/06/2021 08:05:43:

Unless I have missed it, enter "Waypoints" on your satnav ??


A lot will depend on how soon before the start you are given the roadbook as you may not have time to do so.

The other thing is that you would need to sit down with a map and work out the distances to each of the "waypoints" to know where to enter on teh satnav as a roadbook will probably just have distances and tulip symbols not road names etc.

Edited By JasonB on 21/06/2021 08:52:57

Colin Heseltine21/06/2021 10:45:13
634 forum posts
220 photos

I think Peak4 (Bill) suggestion is a good one. I used to use a bike speedo on my Caterham 7 when I changed to a smaller diameter wheel than the speedo was calibrated for. I attached magnet to inside of brake disk and sensor to the suspension upright. Easy to use and reset as necessary.


Henry Brown21/06/2021 11:44:08
509 forum posts
106 photos

Jason is on the money again! We just need a device that we enter the Inter(im) as shown above, when we get to the next junction that Inter distance is added, it's all about getting from one junction to the next junction, ensuring any others are ignorined any along the way.

I had seen a bike set up used but now they can be had for very little money with GPS rather than the magnet/sensor that would have been the way to go, but the main problem is that they are so small, obvious when they have to be on a bike, our phone with a 5" display should be more than adequate. I'm just looking at doing a 3D printed mount for it...

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