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Tank Bag Maps


Albert

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Just wondering if anyone has a favorite as far as maps to insert in the tank bag goes. Do you just use folding road maps or is there some clever alternative. This will be my first bike with a tank bag so I have no experience whatsoever with them. I do notice that on my bag (06 RT factory BMW tank bag) the map sleeve is narrower at the bottom, where the map is inserted, than the top. As far as I can tell this means 1.) use a smaller map than the actual window or b.) wrinkle up the map to stuff it in and then smooth it when inserted. During dress rehearsal option "b" is much harder than is sounds. Thanks for any advice.

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pipenslippers

Option 1 Use a GPS,

 

but if you still like a map and don't want a gps then

 

Option 2 Use a mapping program on the PC such as Microsoft Autoroute. Print out the maps you need at the scale you need. A4 prints will go into most map pockets, but if they don't with yours you can adjust the scale and fold them a little bit. Also, this means you can write all over them and put them in a route scrapbook when you finish. You don't have to ruin a good map either.

 

Good luck,

Brian

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I've used both folded state paper maps as well as those printed from MapSource software at various magnifications. I prefer the state maps because I believe the legibility is surperior to the MapSource. I typically use the paper maps just for large scale reference and use my GPS for detail.

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or...

 

Go down to your local Wal-Mart and purchase the latest Rand McNally Road Atlas (they’re about five bucks). Yank the staples and pull out the maps for whatever trip you want to take. Fold to fit map pocket. If your trip covers several states, stack the maps in order.

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I know it is only applicable to Australia (but there is one for NZ too) but I really like the A5 book called the Australian Motorcycle atlas.

 

Australian Motorcycle Atlas

 

As well as good size easy to read maps it also contains very details info on what are suggested as the best 100 rides throughout the country. Fits easily into my BigMak mapcase and a good companion to my GPS.

 

(PS. The link only refers to 50 rides but the current edition has 100.)

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pipenslippers
I've used both folded state paper maps as well as those printed from MapSource software at various magnifications. I prefer the state maps because I believe the legibility is surperior to the MapSource. I typically use the paper maps just for large scale reference and use my GPS for detail.

 

I find the Mapsource software really bad. When I plan routes on the PC, I usually do it in Autoroute first, then transfer to Mapsource for the download to the quest. If I need a map to read I use Autoroute because it looks like a "real" map. On the road I take a "Tuffmap" for overviews. These are A5 size, waterproof and tear resistant. They are available for Europe and UK, but I'm not sure about USA.

 

Brian

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Get a piece of plexi-glass, not too thick, cut it to the size of the map window, fold your maps around the plastic, and slide them into the map window. Works like a charm.

 

This is surprisingly helpful.

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Get a piece of plexi-glass, not too thick, cut it to the size of the map window, fold your maps around the plastic, and slide them into the map window. Works like a charm.

 

This is surprisingly helpful.

 

I like it....

 

thumbsup.gif

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For pre-planned trips AAA membership will get you a trip ticket which is pre-folded to a nice tank bag size. The downside is if you want to be spontaneous, the ticket has a pretty narrow margin of deviation from your planned route. The good news is they will also give you all the state and/or county maps you want for free. Combined with avoiding local DMV for vehicle registration and the 100 mile free towing, AAA is a pretty good deal. thumbsup.gif

 

No affiliation with AAA, just a happy man with many maps.

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For pre-planned trips AAA membership will get you a trip ticket which is pre-folded to a nice tank bag size. The downside is if you want to be spontaneous, the ticket has a pretty narrow margin of deviation from your planned route. The good news is they will also give you all the state and/or county maps you want for free. Combined with avoiding local DMV for vehicle registration and the 100 mile free towing, AAA is a pretty good deal. thumbsup.gif

 

Careful of the moto towing by AAA, as I had found out. You need to buy that coverage separately. They agreed to tow my moto 60 mi because of continued membership since the '70s, but no more.

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AAA only would tow me to the nearest AAA approved garage- the opposite direction from my house. I have AAA now through my local credit union, they gave me the best rate for my cage, about $400 for full coverage on my R1200ST (as second car?) When I had my last car totalled (rear ended) they paid me more than I paid for the car and threw in the taxes. Now I want those free maps!!! thumbsup.gif

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Firefight911

Here is an alternative map source for you.

 

http://www.madmaps.com/

 

I have not used these personally, but have seen tehm at the motorcycle shop and the motorcycle shows. They seem to be quite good.

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Mad Maps are excellent, but only cover a small area. Mainly prime motorcycle destinations.

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Every couple years I go to a truck stop near the end of calendar year and buy the "discounted laminated Rand McNally Atlas". These $50 dollar books are usually marked down to $12/15 bucks by the time the new ones are ready to be released. I cut the map pages to tank bag size and carry the ones I need for each trip. They don't take much room and water doesn't hurt them. Like handling large playing cards!

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I used MadMaps and loved them during my recent West Coast tour, but they aren't helpful to me in my tank bag map window. I don't know about others, but I can't usefully look at maps while riding. In my tank bag window I stick a piece of 8.5 x 11 paper (cut down to fit the R12RT window opening dimensions, on which I have handwritten directions: e.g., RIGHT TURN route 60, take for 8 miles, LEFT TURN on Route 1, take 48 miles, etc. When I make a rest stop, I consult the maps themselves (in the tank bag of course, just not in the window.

 

Does anyone else do this?

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Wow, lot's of great information (but then I expected that from this group) thumbsup.gif

Thanks (and keep it coming)

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I used MadMaps and loved them during my recent West Coast tour, but they aren't helpful to me in my tank bag map window. I don't know about others, but I can't usefully look at maps while riding. In my tank bag window I stick a piece of 8.5 x 11 paper (cut down to fit the R12RT window opening dimensions, on which I have handwritten directions: e.g., RIGHT TURN route 60, take for 8 miles, LEFT TURN on Route 1, take 48 miles, etc. When I make a rest stop, I consult the maps themselves (in the tank bag of course, just not in the window.

 

Does anyone else do this?

 

 

I used to do that until I bought a GPS last year. What a difference in terms of convenience. I still carry maps, though, to pore over at night to see the "big picture", and in case the technology fails. I could never read maps in a map case on the tank bag, so like you, I wrote the directions out.

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Yankee_Dog
I used MadMaps and loved them during my recent West Coast tour, but they aren't helpful to me in my tank bag map window. I don't know about others, but I can't usefully look at maps while riding. In my tank bag window I stick a piece of 8.5 x 11 paper (cut down to fit the R12RT window opening dimensions, on which I have handwritten directions: e.g.,.............

 

I stuff a AAA map into the window and then fit the directions into what ever section of map I dont need.

 

I would advise the use of cheap or free maps for use in a tank bag window. With all the folding, unfolding, stuffing and wrinkling involved your map is only good for about one trip. Free maps are available from AAA or if you are not a member you can get them from most state's tourism sites or rest stops on the x-way.

 

Yankee Dog

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I use a GPS also. But that a side. I have found maps on the tank bag to say the least be hard to read, and often unsafe. I write down simple large easy to read direction with a bold black marker. I'll make all the pages I need to keep them large and easy to read. This way I can see the the directions fast and keep my eyes on the road. An example might be: I-75S (81 mils)> I-74S (64 mils)> X84> right on SR27 (34 mils). If I need to read a map I get off the bike. Works for me.

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I used MadMaps and loved them during my recent West Coast tour, but they aren't helpful to me in my tank bag map window. I don't know about others, but I can't usefully look at maps while riding. In my tank bag window I stick a piece of 8.5 x 11 paper (cut down to fit the R12RT window opening dimensions, on which I have handwritten directions: e.g., RIGHT TURN route 60, take for 8 miles, LEFT TURN on Route 1, take 48 miles, etc. When I make a rest stop, I consult the maps themselves (in the tank bag of course, just not in the window.

 

Does anyone else do this?

 

Me too. I like things simple while hurtling down the road.

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mistercindy

I just use the "Official Travel Map" put out by the Texas Department of Transportation. I usually just keep it folded to the area around Dallas/Fort Worth. If I travel outside of that area I'll fold it to that area.

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I find the Mapsource software really bad. When I plan routes on the PC, I usually do it in Autoroute first, then transfer to Mapsource

How do you transfer it into Mapsource? I use Microsoft Streets & Trips and would like to be able to transfer routes there into Mapsource, but can't find any way do it.

 

TIA,

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pipenslippers
I find the Mapsource software really bad. When I plan routes on the PC, I usually do it in Autoroute first, then transfer to Mapsource

How do you transfer it into Mapsource? I use Microsoft Streets & Trips and would like to be able to transfer routes there into Mapsource, but can't find any way do it.

 

TIA,

 

Unfortunately, I don't think that there is any way to automatically transfer. I work the route out in Autoroute because it is easier to see and plot (better graphics and calculations) Then I note the main waypoints and manually enter them into Mapsource. That way I can make sure I am using the roads I want to. I really wish the Mapsource graphics looked more like a real map. It would make life so much easier. Also, Autoroute does postcode searches. WHY DOESN'T MAPSOURCE !!!!!

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Thanks, Pipenslippers. I do pretty much the same thing; map it out in Streets&Trips, then put in the coordinates to Mapsource. I find Mapsource to be the worst mapping tool I've ever used. Clumsy, inaccurate for some of the roads I ride, and a general PITA. But it came with the 2160 and is the only thing I've found to easily talk with the 2160.

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