car GPS' and weather proofing - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 12 Old 09-01-2010, 12:52 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Monument, Colorado
Posts: 151
car GPS' and weather proofing

OK, I know there are a lot of which GPS should I buy threads but I didn't see what I was looking for so here goes.

If you are using a car based GPS which one are you using and how are you protecting it from the weather? Garmin Nuvi 500 need not apply since that is well known to be waterproof. The reason I ask is there are a fair number of car oriented GPS units I like more than the Nuvi 500 but of course none are waterproof.

So, if you respond what I'd like to know is

1) which GPS
2) how you mount it
3) how you protect it from the weather
4) can you still use the touch screen (assuming it has one) with gloves on and the weather protection in place
5) what made you choose this one feature? price?
6) pictures please if possible


Last edited by tpak; 09-01-2010 at 12:53 PM. Reason: added 6
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post #2 of 12 Old 09-01-2010, 01:36 PM
maggot's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Victoria BC Canada
Posts: 962
Hi Chris
1) which GPS
Garmin Nuvi 2 something but any Nuvi will do well
2) how you mount it
I have a ram mount on the handlebars and one between the windshield mounts
3) how you protect it from the weather
RAm aquabox works great
4) can you still use the touch screen (assuming it has one) with gloves on and the weather protection in place
yes, and I have a 12v outlet under the shelf I built
5) what made you choose this one feature? price?
At the time I bought it, it just for the car, and it had the basic features I was looking for. If I were buying another it would probably be a Nuvi 765, and not a MC specific one.
6) pictures please if possible
this is one of the mounts, the other is on the right handlebar

and box


2007 DL650 Gray

Last edited by maggot; 09-01-2010 at 07:23 PM.
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post #3 of 12 Old 09-01-2010, 02:45 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Oklahoma City
Posts: 79
1. Nuvi 350
2. RAM GPS holder attached to RAM ball bolted to handlebar clamps. Not bad, but sometimes a little glare as the GPS screen tilts upward a bit.
3. I put the GPS in my tankbag when it starts to rain. Works great as the mount is easy to release even with gloves.
4. Screen works fine with gloves (no weather protection)
5. Just bought it for car. Mount was cheap.
6. Try to get you some pics later if I can remember...

2008 DL650 - Flat Black
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post #4 of 12 Old 09-01-2010, 03:08 PM
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: Toronto - way way way too much traffic
Posts: 1,218
Until I picked up a 2720 I was using the very unwaterproof Garmin i5, mounted using the supplied suction mount with some zip ties. I tried it first on the brake reservoir, then tried zip tying to the windshield mounts - it worked fine and was easily accessible, readable and a little bit weather protected. Any Garmin Nuvi will be much more adaptable to mounting with a RAM mount.

As for weather protection, I tried the ziploc bag method in the rain for a while, then got annoyed with it and went without as the i5 really wasn't exposed to driving rain tucked in behind the windshield, although it certainly got wet. It made it through Hurricane Ike two years ago followed by a number of other rainy rides, and it still works fine.

As for putting it away in the rain, well, that's when I really want it working for me.

I note there are some tankbags out there now that put the GPS under plastic just under your chin. You could run a twelve volt outlet straight up from the battery.

'04 650, and goshdarnit it's fun - matte silver (#9 in the Silver 'Strom Club)
farewell to an '81 KZ550, '83 GPz750, '83 V45 Sabre, R-Reg GT380, '84 GPz550, early '70s DT175, and a '72 Peugeot 102
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post #5 of 12 Old 09-01-2010, 03:53 PM
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Location: Idaho Falls, Idaho
Posts: 249
Garmin Nuvi 255W, right now $99 at Costco. Mount it using a mount like Richland Rick sells (aluminum plate that mounts between the two upper windscreen bolts with a Ram ball mount system,9704.0.html). I have a 12V cigarette lighter outlet by my key to plug into. For light rain I typically do nothing as the unit is shielded behind the windscreen. For heavier conditions a Ziploc 1 quart freezer bag and a rubber band work perfectly for weather proofing.

2008 DL1000, Two Brothers, PCV, etc., etc.
2008 GSX1340R Hayabusa, Velocity Racing Turbo, boost controller, water injected
2002 CBR600F4i
2008 GSX-R600, Akrapovic full Ti, PCV w/AutoTune
DynoJet 250 dynamometer (just learning to use it)


Last edited by Dr. M; 09-01-2010 at 04:33 PM.
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post #6 of 12 Old 09-01-2010, 04:12 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Mount Desert Island, Maine
Posts: 5,520
I use a Mio C-520.

It is attached to the factory mount.

The factory mount is attached to a custom, homemade base.

It is "waterproofed" by sliding a baggie over it and securing the baggie with a rubberband, (I do this only when it is raining. No baggie when it is not raining.).

2007 DL-650 (I gave away in 2012 with 111,000 + miles)
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Last edited by Black Lab; 09-01-2010 at 08:00 PM.
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post #7 of 12 Old 09-01-2010, 07:13 PM
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Location: North Vancouver, BC
Posts: 19
This is about as lo-tech as you can get. I buy Champion underwear at Costco and the 3 pack comes in a perfectly sized clear plastic bag. The bag covers the GPS and fastens around the RAM mount. These bags even used to have a zipper at the bottom but I see the latest one just has a snap fastener. Keeps my Nuvi 360 perfectly dry when needed and you can see and press the touch screen with no problems.

[B]LZB[/B] - [I][COLOR="Blue"]('05 DL650) ('00 Goldwing GL1500)[/COLOR][/I]
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post #8 of 12 Old 09-01-2010, 08:32 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Eastern Ontario, Canada
Posts: 392
I've done the plastic bag and rubber band thing, it works well.
That being said, why not just scoop up an older waterproof streetpilot 27xx or 28xx series? The 2720 can be had for about $100 on ebay, you can still get current maps for it and a semi-secure mount for it. Plus it looks old so it's less likely to get stolen than a fancy zumo. If it does get stolen or you drop it or lose it in deep mud, you're only out $100.

2003 DL 1000
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post #9 of 12 Old 09-01-2010, 10:35 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: NW Arkansas
Posts: 221
I used a Nuvi 660 which was very easy to operate, even with gloves on. Waterproofing wasn't necessarily a problem with a ziploc and rubber bands, but durability was. Apparently the vibrations from the bike are more severe than in a car and I had to send the unit in twice for repairs. Once to repair the external speaker and once to fix the plug for the power cord (of course, both repairs were under warranty and, no, I didn't mistreat the unit :mrgreen After the last repair, I bought a refurbished 2820 from Amazon for $150 and the Nuvi has been on car duty for the past three years with no issues.

'05 DL1000
Symtec grips, PLX bags, Givi engine guards, Genmar risers, Kisan signal minder, Hyper-lites, Vista cruise, Garmin 2820, Sirius radio, Camos BTH 500,SW Motech center stand

1998 K1200RS
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post #10 of 12 Old 09-02-2010, 02:31 AM
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Location: Santa Clara Utah
Posts: 94

i use both the nuvi 250w and 255w, tried aqua boxes but couldn't see the screen well enough or operate the touch screen with gloves well enough to suite me.really like the gas cap mount and the bags connection mount set up on their tank bag. the zip lock bag and rubber band worked best for me also.
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