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PostPosted: Fri Jul 23, 2010 5:59 pm 
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tspbrady wrote:
Ok, so I'm confused. Got my 76csx, but if I find some coordinates on GoogleEarth and plug them in as a waypoint, they don't show up in the correct place when I look at them on the "Trip and waypoint manager nor in the GPS". How could that be???

You need to be sure the waypoints are being expressed in the same units in Google Earth as in your Garmin software and your GPS. They may expressed as degrees only (xxx.xxxxº) or as degrees, minutes and seconds (xxxº xx' xx") or as degrees and minutes only (xxxº xx.xx'). Also they can be expressed as Nxxx and Sxxx or xxx and -xxx for north and south of the equator or Exxx and Wxxx or xxx and -xxx for east and west of 0º longitude. You can configure everything to use the same units.
Also, Google Earth normally saves data in .gpx format, whereas Garmin defaults to .gdb (proprietary Garmin) format. That's where GPSBabel comes in.
It's a bit confusing till you get the hang of it, but worthwhile.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 23, 2010 9:10 pm 
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Brady,

I agree w/ Chris, it is likely a problem of units. It is easy to change the units in either Google Earth or on the gps 76 so they match. However, to manually input wpt data gathered on GE into the 76 or any other gps unit is torture--even Dick Cheney would agree to that!

The easy way to get data into your gps when planning a trip or sail is to purchase National Geographic TOPO! for Florida, Alabama, & Georgia. $49.95 at REI (they often have sales with 25% off on one item.) The link http://www.rei.com/product/737963

The NG TOPO! software has excellent digital maps. You can lay out a route with wpts, even for a day sail, then upload it to your 76--as they say, a piece of cake. I've been using this software for years to layout routes for multiday trips--it is great. You may be able to do this with your BlueChart g2 software--I don't know. A word of caution so you don't expect too much from TOPO!--you can only upload/download wpts & routes, NOT maps. You can download to NG TOPO! your daily "tracks" that you generate on your gps. Of course, since you have a Garmin, you can also easily download your tracks onto Google Earth, also. That is neat.

I learned something today. I was looking at Garmin's online User Guide for the gpsMAP 76CSx and searched for "tides." It came up with a brief discussion of pulling up tide charts on the 76, if you had Mapsourch BlueChart g2 software! So, the friend I mentioned above who could pull up tide charts on her 76, must have had the BlueChart g2 installed. The tides were excellent, but I think I will continue to get my tides off the internet rather than lay out $139 for the BlueChart software. Still, I will be interested in seeing your Garmin 76 w BlueCharts.

Keith

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 23, 2010 10:31 pm 
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There's no need to export data manually from Google Earth to the Garmin.
To export a series of Placemarks (Waypoints), proceed as follows: Right click on My Places in the Google Earth sidebar, the select Add, then Folder. Give the new folder a name, then click OK.
Make sure your new folder is highlighted in the sidebar, then create any placemarks you wish to export. You can name them each if you wish, or just leave them all as Untitled Placemarks. All your new placemarks should appear in your new folder in the sidebar.
Make sure again that your new folder is highlighted, then select File->Save->Save Place As. Then select Save as type: .Kml., then click on Save.
Then open GPSBabel and select Input>>> Format ->Google Earth (Keyhole) Markup Language (.kml) and select <<<Output Format-> Garmin MapSource - gdb (.gdb).
Browse to your saved .kml under Input>>>, then name your desired output file under <<<Output, then hit the "let's go" button.
That should create your Garmin (.gdb) file, which you can open with your Garmin software and all your exported waypoints should appear on your map, be it Topo, Bluecharts or even just the Base Map.

This assumes you've set both Google Earth and the Garmin software to use the same units, as discussed earlier.

The main point of this is to record features which are visible on Google Earth, but which may not be accurately depicted on the maps, the exact location of sea-grass beds being the best example.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 12:48 am 
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Thanks guys, once I changed the units to match GoogleEarth seems to match the Garmin now.

For the tides, it looks like a snap on the 76. You can click on a tide station on the map or find a close one just like a waypoint and show the chart for the tides. I wonder if it automatically adjusts the soundings for the current tide. I'll have to check that...

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 5:33 am 
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tspbrady wrote:
Thanks guys, once I changed the units to match GoogleEarth seems to match the Garmin now.

For the tides, it looks like a snap on the 76. You can click on a tide station on the map or find a close one just like a waypoint and show the chart for the tides. I wonder if it automatically adjusts the soundings for the current tide. I'll have to check that...


I really hope they would not do that by default. Years of habit are hard to break, and when I look at a chart, I assume I'm looking at low tide (or mean lower low water or whatever). Could get in trouble by adding a foot of tide when it has already been added for me!


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 5:46 am 
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My version of Bluecharts doesn't do it. The maps supplied are identical to the official marine charts. The depth contours do not alter, even though it has the tide calculator.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 6:10 am 
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Hey, Tom, Garmin "BlueCharts g2" tide charts give you mean low tide (I believe) and the real tide at various times through the day (much like the graphic tide chart below.) Huhhh, you don't have to think. What that can tell you when you set up a trip, is whether you are going to easily access a beach or campsite, and when tides will permit you to easily leave that beach or campsite.

I don't have the luxury of good tide charts on my garmin. Instead I have been using the site: http://tbone.biol.sc.edu/tide/sites_usgulf.html This gives your tides all along the FL coast from FL Bay up to Pensacola. The chart below is an example of graphical output from that site.

Image
This chart says that if you were going to East Cape Sable in the Everglades today (Jul 24, 2010), you could access the beach easily from 7:30 am to 4 pm, but since at 7:30 am and 4 pm, the tide is only 1', you are going to have to drag your boat up the beach probably about 30-40' to get it above hi tide. If you arrive at noon to 1 pm, you arrive at near hi tide and don't have to haul your boat up the beach. You could have your picnic and be out of there before the tide drops too much.

Tide charts are great and to have accurate ones on your GPS is a great convenience. I'll tip my hat to Garmin on that one (if you have the Mapsource BlueChart g2 on your gps.)

Keith

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 3:44 pm 
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Just for the record, here's what the output from Garmin Bluecharts Tides looks like:

Image

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 4:03 pm 
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Chris,

That is on your computer, yes? The display on the Garmin gps display will be quite different although the basic chart is the same, yes?

Keith

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 4:13 pm 
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The display is much the same on the GPS Keith, but the graphic and the tabular output are on separate screens.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 5:10 pm 
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Tried out the new 76CSX on Biscayne Bay today! Worked like a champ! I like to see all the Bluecharts info as we are moving along so I think it was worth it. It was really great to be able to upload the track into GoogleEarth to see where we actually went once we got back.

Just a note - the rubber seal for the USB port pulled half way through the screw that holds it in. It was an easy fix - just undo the screw and reseat it on top of the seal - but I'm glad I caught it yesterday. It would not have been fun to lose *2* gps's on thier first tryout!

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 5:13 pm 
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By the way, somebody came up to me when we were launching asking questions - and saying that he had seen something like the TI that some guy launches over at Matheson - wonder who that might be?

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 5:45 pm 
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Brady!

You MUST PROTECT THAT 76 FROM ALL CONTACT W/ SALTWATER--FORGET THE CRAP ABOUT BEING WATERPROOF.

Get yourself an Aquapac bag or go to West Marine and get their corresponding dry bag.

"Waterproof" gps units last about 12-18 months when they regularly get doused with saltwater--like occurs when they are unprotected on a sea kayak deck or an AI in a saltwater environment.

Keith

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 8:02 pm 
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tspbrady wrote:
Tried out the new 76CSX on Biscayne Bay today! Worked like a champ!

One suggestion, the rubber flap seals can open easy if hit by water while under way. If you don't 'bag' it, try filling the small compartments with dielectric grease. The grease causes the flaps to stay suctioned closed, and even if it doesn't, the salt water can't displace the grease.

My first 76CSX died after 1 outing. The new replacement, using dielectric grease, is going strong now one year later.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 2:23 am 
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Definately sounds like I need to do something! I'll take a look at the bags that are available, but I'm thinking that solution may make the unit harder to use. I'm wondering if there's one that I can actually use the unit while it is inside - the GPS had to be removed from the one I saw before it could be used. With my luck it would be protected right up until I took it out to use it at which time the big wave hits me and it's lights out. Also, I might want to mount it...

The dielectric grease solution is a bit messy, and I'm wondering if the grease causes any problems making the connection when it is plugged in to the computer?

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