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Old 12-22-2006, 04:41 AM   #1
Andy
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Laptop GPS

By July of í07 my wife and I will be planning to spend at least 5 to 6 months a year on the road. My wife God love her, is not a navigator! We will need to be using a GPS system of some sort. We feel weíll need a laptop anyway and obviously the least expensive approach would GPS software for the laptop. However, she is also technologically challenged as well. With this in mind I have two questions. (1) Will I need her to operate the laptop as we travel, or do I plan the route in advance and then it does itís job, and (2) because of itís larger size how is it used in the cab of the truck without it being in the way? I truly hope that those of you who are using this system have come up with some creative ways to deal with this problem.

Thanks in advance,
Andy
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Old 12-22-2006, 05:26 AM   #2
Parrothead
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Andy,
You can set the route and then just let it do it's job. Be sure to get one that has a voice because you don't want to be looking at it while driving. We installed a Laptop Mount that I can't find the link to right now. It can be positioned for either the driver or passenger to see. It is not in the way. Rich purchased this same mount and posted pictures of it. This might be a good time to teach your better half to operate the laptop and software. You have several months to practice.
Happy trails.............................
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Old 12-22-2006, 07:09 AM   #3
ols1932
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Andy,
We've used a laptop with Delorme Street Atlas software and Earthmate GPS and it has worked wonders. Once in a while it will call for us to go on a road that we don't want to go on but we can change that. My wife plans all the routes for us to take (I just drive) and she holds the laptop on her (where else) lap and watches the little green arrow move as we move. I've wanted her to put the laptop on the console between us so she doesn't have to hold it but that's what she wants to do. For me, I'd put it on the console and probably use some velcro so it wouldn't slide around.

Some people use hand-held GPS thing-a-majigs, some have the sophisticated Garmin. But each person gets what they think is best for them. Laptops work great.

Orv
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Old 12-22-2006, 07:55 AM   #4
noneck
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I use Delorme w/earthmate GPS and place it on a Jotto Desk.
Link is here -> http://www.jottodesk.us/jotto_desk_5167acd.htm
Chuck

It looks like this...
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Old 12-22-2006, 08:24 AM   #5
boylanag
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I have been using the Delorme/Earthmate GPS for several years now and really like it. It is impossible to get lost with it. Easy to learn too. I have used it in my work for years all over the eastern USA, NYC to Miami and Chicago to Atlanta and rural in between, and it works fine. If you miss a turn it will automatically reroute you. This is great if you miss a freeway exit or city street. Carol uses it in her lap, too. With our Verizon air card, she can check the email/web while we are traveling.
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Old 12-22-2006, 09:33 AM   #6
Parrothead
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Found the link - http://www.mobilelaptopmount.com/. It is only $30. After I purchased, I was able to communicate with them via email and phone to ask questions. The connections can be purchased at any plumbing supply (Home Depot, Ace Hardware, etc) if you want to change the configuration.
Happy trails......................
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Old 12-22-2006, 09:51 AM   #7
boylanag
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Thanks, Sue. That is more like it, pricewise.
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Old 12-22-2006, 12:22 PM   #8
Andy
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Thanks to all who responded, it is truly appreciated. If anyone has any other thoughts or ideas I'd like to hear them.

Andy
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Old 12-22-2006, 12:24 PM   #9
richfaa
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Actually you can purchase the parts for the stand that Sue and I have almost anywhere..it is just black pipe. You might spend as much as 10.00 to do it yourself.The right seat runs the GPS the left seat drives.We use a 17 inch HP laptop and the Garman GPS-18..Any of them will do the job.
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Old 12-22-2006, 02:52 PM   #10
sreigle
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Andy, I have exactly the same dilemma as you. So I am the route planner, the driver, and the navigator. I use Streets and Trips on a laptop. Have also used Street Atlas, which is also good. I have a board strapped to the console lid extending closer to the dash. It is covered with velcro. The bottom of the laptop also has velcro on all the spaces where it won't cover cooling slots or keep a lid from opening. I thus can position the laptop as I want it. It works great. I really like having the large screen there. Both the above products use voice to clue me there is a turn coming up so I don't have to watch the laptop all the time. It's location is such that a quick glance takes no more time than would adjusting the AC or radio.

One thing I really like about S&T besides being the easiest I've ever used to plan a route, is a settting that keeps the next turn on the screen so the closer you come the more it zooms. As you approach the turn it is zoomed to where you can read street names, see which lane you need, etc. Automatically. Pretty sweet.
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Old 12-23-2006, 07:15 AM   #11
noneck
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Ok, couldn't resist as the rain broke, sun came out, I'm off work today through Monday...wish I was camping. Here's what the Noneck Command Center looks like!
Chuck
Edited. The picture was changed to a link. It exceeds guidelines of 640 x 480 maximum. HOTR
http://i14.tinypic.com/2i1ko46.jpg
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Old 12-26-2006, 02:24 AM   #12
VanMan
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I purchased the same one as Rich and Sue. Be sure to go to the website and look at all the installation photos. I'm VERY pleased with mine. With the quick disconnect, you can mount just another base in another vehicle and make it interchangeable. I'll eventually get some "black pipe" and make a new setup so the top piece is interchangeable since my van needs a little different configuration.
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