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*FREE* Topographical Maps For Garmin Nuvi GPS

Discussion in 'Technical Chat' started by Ghost96Romeo, Jul 15, 2009.

  1. Ghost96Romeo

    Ghost96Romeo [OP] What is the Search Tab for????

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    In this day and age I don't know many who would shy away from free stuff. If you are the owner (proud or not) of a Garmin Nuvi GPS the tips and links below will help download and install topographical or city map updates onto your GPS.

    * First and foremost you have to determine if your computer has Garmin's Mapsource program. If you already do, then you're able to skip a few steps. If you don't you'll need to progress to the next step. If you are unsure whether you do or do not follow this pathway. --->Start Menu--->All Programs--->Look for a Garmin folder which should have the Mapsource icon. If you do not have either, then you will need to move to the next step.



    - Step 1-
    You'll need to download Garmin's Training Center software. Cut and paste the following link: http://www8.garmin.com/support/collection.jsp?product=999-99999-04 You will need to down Garmin's Training Center software in order to download the Mapsource update which will allow you upload topo maps to your Garmin GPS.

    -Step 2-
    Cut and paste this link to get the Mapsource update: http://www8.garmin.com/support/download_details.jsp?id=209(In the event you need or want additional information on how to get a free copy of Garmin's Mapsource program you can cut and paste this link. http://freegeographytools.com/2007/garmin-mapsource-for-free
    Now that you have installed Mapsource you are ready to start downloading maps to your computer and upload them to your Garmin GPS. As I eventually learned to do this is not overly difficult but If you have questions, here's some additional reading. To read more on downloading maps to your computer and uploading to your GPS cut and paste this link: http://www.gpsfiledepot.com/tutorials/how-to-load-.img-files-into-mapsource-with-mapsettoolkit/

    -Step 3-
    Once you are ready to begin downloading maps just cut and paste the following link and select the state you wish to download. This also works for updating existing city maps.
    http://www.gpsfiledepot.com/maps/
    Depending on the state you may have multiple options with which to choose. Choose the link for the map and click the download windows link. Doing so should trigger a pop up window asking if you want to run, save or cancel. I would recommend run and let it install.

    -Step 4-
    - Once you have downloaded the map(s) you want open up the Garmin Mapsource program and in the upper left corner there should be a drop down box which will show the which maps you have on your computer. At this point, select which map from the drop down and it will display in the map area in the main part of the screen. Using your mouse, press the left button and drag it over the area of the map you want to highlight (there is a highlight button you need to push first). It should light up the grid a yellow color and the box on the left side of the screen will start populating with the various files which comprise the map area you selected.

    My recommendation would be to do this for all of map area you wish to upload to your GPS. Once you have all the map files set that you want to send to your GPS click the button at the top to "Send to Device" and the process will begin to start uploading your newly acquired maps to your GPS.

    Below are a few points I learned along the way that I will share:
    * I learned that you cannot update or individual topo map files as the new one will over write the previous file.
    * Another point I will make is that your GPS is somewhat limited in the amount of onboard memory it does have. I was able to upload 24k topo maps for TX and city map update and have a small amount of memory left. If you're decide to go hog wild and download numerous states or areas I would recommend getting an SD card with a few gigabytes of storage on it.

    It's been a few days since I got everything situated on my Nuvi350 and so far so good. I've noticed a subtle difference on GPS with additional detail which was not there previously for bodies of water, elevation and so on. If you decide to take advantage of this, good luck and I hope you enjoy.
     
  2. EquinsuOcha

    EquinsuOcha Bourbon

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    Those are too many words for me right now...but I did pick out "Free," "Garmin Nüvi," and "the."

    So I'm in. After a good night's rest, that is. Good find!
     
  3. Ghost96Romeo

    Ghost96Romeo [OP] What is the Search Tab for????

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    I tried to be as detailed as possible with the instructions. It'll work out.
     
  4. EquinsuOcha

    EquinsuOcha Bourbon

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    I hope so! It sounds awesome
     
  5. MonkeyProof

    MonkeyProof Power Top

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    downloading a topo map as i type this...i have a garmin topo map ready to go but um...i dont have the ahem..unlock key
     
  6. Ghost96Romeo

    Ghost96Romeo [OP] What is the Search Tab for????

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    I didn't run into any problems with needing an unlock key.
     
  7. Dark Knight

    Dark Knight East Bound and Down

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    wonder if this will work on my kenwood with garmin...

    Edit: ohh probably not since I cant press the "send to device button" in that program and have it appear on my 5120. IT would need to work through a thumb drive also.
     
  8. Brunes

    Brunes abides. Staff Member

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    I'm liking what I'm seeing so far...We'll see how it all works out. I'd LOVE topo for the area I wheel around...

    =)
     
  9. Dark Knight

    Dark Knight East Bound and Down

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    lol all 56ft above sea level that you are:D??
     
  10. Brunes

    Brunes abides. Staff Member

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    Yeah...There is enuf variation for me use it. and the lakes and streams info would be good.

    OP- What nuvi do you have??
     
  11. Dark Knight

    Dark Knight East Bound and Down

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    oh cool, last week when i was at the beach i saw my elevation at -4ft on ocean drive kinda made me say wtf....
     
  12. MonkeyProof

    MonkeyProof Power Top

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    i have the actual 24K garmin US topo that i got from a buddy...works great on mapsource, but i cant transfer the topo to the GPS unit with out the unlock key...which i cnat find anywhere....Boooo
     
  13. Ghost96Romeo

    Ghost96Romeo [OP] What is the Search Tab for????

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    I have a Garmin Nuvi 350. I needed to free up some space on the GPS drive so I deleted all those crappy languages I'll never use and some default images. I was able to load a Texas Topo and a good portion of the US city maps.

    Sorry, I can't be of more help with that one. I loaded the Ibiscus (sp?) one from the website and it works well.
     
  14. Brunes

    Brunes abides. Staff Member

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    Nice- Which city maps did you use?? I've got most of the gulf coast between Tallahassee and New Oreleans loaded up on mine...I'm still looking around for what else to load up!! And trying to see what the difference is...I haven't hit any major improvements...
     
  15. Ghost96Romeo

    Ghost96Romeo [OP] What is the Search Tab for????

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    Check your map settings. Sometimes maps will not overlay ontop of each other unless they have a transparent setting in their programming.

    For example:The Topo map of Texas needs to have the Ibiscus map switched off for the contour lines to show. Also ensure that your settings allow for the highest amount of map detail. To do this, I (on my GPS) go to settings> Map> Map Info> and you can select/deselect the map to view.
     
  16. Ghost96Romeo

    Ghost96Romeo [OP] What is the Search Tab for????

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    No one else is taking advantage of this?
     
  17. Ghost96Romeo

    Ghost96Romeo [OP] What is the Search Tab for????

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    Couldn't hurt right?
     
  18. MonkeyProof

    MonkeyProof Power Top

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    freaking awsome! the Ibiscus california TOPO overlay works well, seemed to be pretty accurate when playing with it today
     
  19. Brunes

    Brunes abides. Staff Member

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    Nice. I'm not sitting with my GPS (It's at home and I'm in NY) But I'll give it a shot when I get back!!
     
  20. Ghost96Romeo

    Ghost96Romeo [OP] What is the Search Tab for????

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    See.... I'm shocked more people haven't jumped on this. I'll just keep bumping it every week or so.
     
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