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STL RT Rider

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STL RT Rider

Anyone using XM Weather? If so, which XM package did you sign up for and how well is it working?

 

I just ordered a Garmin 376C and I'm hoping it will provide a margin of comfort in avoiding rainstorms, etc. on my next trip to the Blue Ridge mountains next week. I've seen the Aviation version in action and it works great. I'm hoping someone here has experience with it on a bike. Thx!

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...hoping it will provide a margin of comfort in avoiding rainstorms...

Yes, it's pretty amazing in that respect. I've been out in a couple of situations already this Spring where without some advance warning, I would have ridden right into a heavy rainstorm without getting into raingear. You know how that works, the little voice inside says, "Nah, it's not going to rain. The sky will be green for just a few moments." The XM WX display of where it's raining and where it's not is accurate pretty much to the minute, at least that has been my experience.

 

tens.gif

 

Where that green line starts is where the rain starts. Dress for success ... stay dry.

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STL RT Rider

Hi Matt! So, which XM subscription do you have, Marine, Aviator, or Ground? It was suggested I use the Marine (sailor) subscription.

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...which XM subscription do you have, Marine, Aviator, or Ground?

There are actually six different services within these: marine has 3 tiers, aviation 2 and ground 1. I started with the Marine Fisherman, which is fine (it shows rain, but not clouds). The screen shot is from Marine Master Mariner, a little more a month but has more doo-dads (including clouds).

 

The gotcha between the two less expensive Marine tiers -- Fisherman and Sailor -- is that the former shows barometric pressure (but not surface winds); the latter is the other way around. At the time, I opted for pressure over wind as a better barometer of conditions -- you'd want to consult the options to see what suits you better.

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STL RT Rider

Thanks Matt. BTW, do you have any good routes for Northern Kentucky now?

 

I have to travel from St Louis to Morehead (just east of Lexington) and I really don't want to slab it on I-64 the whole way. I was thinking about going south to Cairo, IL and following the Ohio River Scenic Byway, but that travels mostly in Illinois and Indiana.

 

Any suggestions for north/central Kentucky instead? I know you're "the man" in terms of GPS routes!

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I sure would be interested in knowing how you will be mounting this Garmin and what bike you mount it on. My 2610 may need replacing. smile.gif

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STL RT Rider
I sure would be interested in knowing how you will be mounting this Garmin and what bike you mount it on. My 2610 may need replacing. smile.gif

 

I plan to mount it on both my GS and my FJR on a RAM mount so I can move it easily back and forth. The only question is how I will mount the GXM-30 antennae for the XM Weather. I believe it will fit behind the windscreen on the GS. I may just let it stick to the front of the tank on the FJR, since the antennae is magnetic.

 

We'll find out tomorrow when it gets here! clap.gif

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will one of the "marine" packages will work on the 2730?
No, the weather on the 2xxx stuff is limited to "Knoxville 78 Low 58" sort of line items, rather than the graphics. It's also much, much cheaper (~$7 or so, I think).

the little blue cloud thingys are lightning strikes?
Actually, those are storm cells (blue cloud with single lightning bolt) that generate lots of strikes. At zoomed-in scales, individual lightning strikes are reported once a minute.

Any suggestions for north/central Kentucky instead?
No, sorry, the Indiana/Ohio contingent might be a better resource for the small stuff. I have taken the Western Kentucky and Blue Grass Parkways from Cairo to Lexington and it was a nice enough ride, probably better than taking 64.
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Matt,

 

You have to stop posting messages like this. Why it was just last year that I replaced my aging GPS V with a 2610. Even bought that nice 2 meg CF card for it to load a detail map for the entire US. Wired my S3T for a clean install.

 

Now you're telling me that I have to undo all that and drop another $1000 or so on a 376c!

 

bncry.gif

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STL RT Rider

 

Now you're telling me that I have to undo all that and drop another $1000 or so on a 376c!

 

bncry.gif

 

amac, get the 378C, which just came out a few days ago. It includes all the detail maps of the US pre-loaded, as well as inland lakes/rivers. Comes out to about the same in price as a 376C with a memory card, but you can have the entire database instead of just the part you can fit on a 512mb memory card.

 

Mine arrives today ... can't wait to get it installed and I leave tomorrow for the BRP, with rain in the forecast of course. bncry.gif

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get the 378C...includes all the detail maps of the US pre-loaded, as well as inland lakes/rivers. Comes out to about the same in price as a 376C with a memory card, but you can have the entire database instead of just the part you can fit on a 512mb memory card...

Caveat emptor on the 378/478 ... neither comes with the $200 GXM-30 antenna for receiving the XM and XM WX services. This item is included with the 376C.

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You've got me all geeked out now in advance of a trip to the Plateau tomorrow. We're expecting "weather"...

 

stormy.gif

 

That's the view out the window. Panning and zooming to the lower Ohio valley:

 

tempest.gif

 

Different views, here is the march of the storm cells west-to-east:

 

hootnhollerin.gif

 

Data given on each cell:

 

schtorm.gif

 

Getting in on those lightning strikes. I'd probably call it a night if I were riding and saw this:

 

strikes.gif

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Does the 378 have built in memory, or how does it hold the database? I'm a little leery about units that have internal hard drives for motorcycle use...

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Captain_Pat

I had a similar concern about the 378 so I asked Garmin and this is the response I received:

 

"Thank You for contacting Garmin International,

 

The 378 will have a solid state memory and will work very will in a motorcycle application. Mapping updates will either be in a DVD format or on a data card that is just installed in the unit to update the maps. The only reason that you might need a data card for would be for mapping in other areas that are not included with the unit. (like European maps)"

 

Note the 378 does not come with the XM antenna, the list price for it is about $200. But if you get a 376, plus the auto nav kit, plus a 512 meg card they are about the same price. I'm waiting to see some early reviews about the 378 before I make a decision between the two models.

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Matt,

 

Now you're telling me that I have to undo all that and drop another $1000 or so on a 376c!

 

bncry.gif

 

I paid under $600 for one last fall.

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Hey MattS, you should be careful which screen shots you post...the ones you show are from the 'Master Mariner' or 'Aviator'package, top of the line subscriptions, both.

 

I know, I just spent a week trying to get an upgrade from 'Sailor' to the 'Aviator' package to come up on my Garmin 376c with no luck. The info page on the WX menu shows the aviator with all the features but the 376 doesn't support things like 'Satellite Mosaic', 'METARs' and 'TAF's. Also 'Satellite Mosaic', 'Sever Weather Storm Tracks' and 'Lightning' are only shown in the 'Aviator or 'Master Mariner' packages, each of which costs $49.99 plus taxes per month. Add the music side at $7.00 or $12.00 per month and it starts to add up pretty fast.

 

I have had the 'Sailor' package since March and it is neat to look at, the 'Nexrad Radar' page anyway, but I wish it updated faster and I have driven in the rain more than once with no 'radar echoes' in sight on the Garmin...

 

The jury is still out on whether or not it is worth the money, and frustration with 'Waitin For Data' on the screen at least 20% of the time isn't helping either.

 

Jim

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One more question everyone...is the XM Radio output of the 376/378 loud enough that you can hear it without having to amplify the output? I found that I needed to run the XM output of a standard receiver through a mixit amp to get it sufficiently loud to hear well in helmet mounted speakers.

 

Now that I've gotten away from the intercom/helmet mounted speakers and will be going with molded ear plugs with speakers, that might not be necesssary..I'm hoping anyway.

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  • 1 month later...
STL RT Rider

Been out of pocket for a while and thought I would update this for those that are interested.

 

IMHO, this thing rocks! It performed flawlessly on the Blue Ridge trip, helping us avoid storms and even keeping me clear of some serious lightning on the way home.

 

It seems to be so accurate that, each time I would approach a shaded area on the map indicating showers were present, sure enough, a few drops of rain would start hitting the bike. The graphics showing direction of the storm cells is worth the extra $20 for the Master Mariner subscription. Those indicators help you vary your route to avoid storm cells.

 

I've also used this in my boat on the Mississippi river and it is deadly accurate again for position as well as depth. I checked it constantly against my depth sounder and found it to be right on, no small feat on a river that constantly changes year to year.

 

I will use this unit now on both bikes, in the car and the boat. Even though it is a little pricy, I beleive it is worth it. That's my 2cents ... hope those of you that try it like it as well.

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