GPS with Truck Routes

Discussion in 'Trucking Electronics, Gadgets and Software Forum' started by new bee, Mar 4, 2007.

  1. dynosaur

    dynosaur Light Load Member

    Jan 3, 2009
    San Francisco, CA
    Sure can tell you've had little or no experience with GPS. I've had a Garmin 7200 for several years and can drive into any major city like Los Angeles and navigate freeways, interchanges, and streets better than any native. Takes you right to the door. Mine also has the capability of downloading books on tapes, or being hooked up to a DVD for playing videos/movies, whatever when waiting at a customer. Try to read a map in downtown L.A. and see what happens. Or, how about when it's the middle of the night, snowing, and you're looking for a street sign in an industrial area where you're lucky if you can find a street sign at all. Not a problem with GPS. GPS will take you right to the door. I paid a thousand dollars for mine and it was on sale. But, there has never been a moment when I regretted the cost. How many times have you heard a driver asking for directions on the CB only to get them and, thanking the responding driver profusely, drives off, only to find that he was given the wrong directions. As for truck routes, I have that feature but it's not of much use. Garmin has recently released the Garmin Nuvi 465T, it is designed for commercial drivers, with HazMat routing, height clearances, etc. I have no idea how good it is. But, I can guarantee you this; once you go with GPS, you'll never be without it. Just like a cell phone, once you get accustomed to them it's difficicult to be without one. Lastly, Garmin is the oldest manufacturer and is the primary brand used in commercial aviation. If it can be relied on to get a Jumbo Jet to it's destination, well it's good enough for me. Need an ATM? Your GPS will give you directions to your nearest one. Hungry? Your GPS will give you directions to restaurants listed by kind of food, Mexican, French, Thaj, you name it, along with phone numbers. Parks, library, theaters, Hotel, Motel, Holiday Inn...called P.O.I.'s (points of interest), the average GPS has something like 10 MILLION of them. As for the voice directions; aside from being multi-lingual, you can choose a male or female voice, my unit even allows you to choose accents, English, Australian (useful? No. Fun? Sure.). Customer service? After paying close to $1,100 for my Garmin, approx. 10 days after getting it I dropped it and the screen hit my inverter and broke. Talk about devastated? I called Garmin and the lady said, "You've only had it ten days!" She sent me a brand new unit for $200!!! I know I sound like a used-car salesman, but it's because, after more than two years with my 7200, I can say that never have I been more satisfied with an appliance. I had a Magellan before the Garmin which I paid a little over $900. After about 6 months I sold it for $150 and bought the Garmin. The Magellan was serviceable enough, but compared to the Garmin it was a joke. There are some very good units out there, Garmin is not the only good manufacturer, so do your research and don't rush into anything. There is also a thread on Electronics Connection about the Garmin Nuvi 465T.

    So, I'm sure there will be posts to follow expounding upon the need for commercial pilots to use a Rand-McNally Atlas, but what are ya' gonna' do; in China many still rely on the abacus. GPS technology is here and proven, give yourself a break from the stress of "Which way, left...or... right...north...or...south!" Good luck, stay safe, and keep the shiny side up! And what the heck; the abacus has been around for thousands of years, it's proven itself; so you driver's who find yourselves committed to the old 'tried 'n' true methods---knock yourselves out, and there's always your fingers and toes when push comes to shove!
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2009
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  3. dynosaur

    dynosaur Light Load Member

    Jan 3, 2009
    San Francisco, CA
    I am finding very little information Commercial GPS Truck Routing. I've been hearing a lot about the recently released Garmin Nuvi 465T; a model designed to meet the routing needs of commercial truck drivers. It routes for HazMat, height of bridges and overpasses. That's all great. But, does it route trucks at street level? What about Trucker CoPilot? Does it show streets with weight restrictions? Does PC Miler?
  4. Dieselboss

    Dieselboss Technology Contributor

    Feb 19, 2009
    All of the following do what you ae asking with varying effectiveness and techniques:

    CoPilot Truck Laptop
    PC Miler Navigator
    Garmin 465T
    Goodyear GY500X

    Feast or famine. For so long there has been nearly zero choice for truck routing GPS and in a few months the market will be flooded with them.
  5. homebrewer

    homebrewer Bobtail Member

    Apr 7, 2009
    I have a Garmin nuvi 205w that does really well for me. It is not for trucks; it's for cars, bikes and hikers. It does not have some addresses in it but for those that are not there, I use the directions my company sends me. When I do get there, I mark the entrance to the place for future returns. I also have marked many, many truckstops-- about 150. I like to say my nuvi is the best $250 I have spent in a long time. It has saved my posterior many times since I got in it mid-November 2008. If you get to a road it tells you to go down but you can't for some reaosn, just go to the next street and the next until you can go down that street and it will guide you back to where you want to go. Ingenious!

    I have been told that I can download truck routes to it if I stick a small USB plug in it and a standard-size one into my computer. It is supposed to automatically go to the garmin website and automatically download truck routes. I have yet to try this; I fear I might lose the exact coordinates for everything I have put into it. Something I really love about GPS units (mine) is that I can key in the address of where I am to deliver, call up how far I have to go to make the delivery, then select a place from my stored points to stop along the way that is half, a third or a quarter (depending on how much time I have to make the delivery) of the way there. Really helps in keeping my hours down to 8-9 a day.

    I hope I have helped.
  6. telcobilly

    telcobilly Medium Load Member

    Sep 30, 2008
    Laying Low
    dynosaur speaks the truth on several points. The Garmin is the most user friendly. I can't imagine doing a job like otr trucking and not taking advantage of this inexpensive technology. You can't follow it 100% but to only have maps?.... I don't think so.
    I have had the laptop GPS, a Tom Tom (still have it) and now a Nuvi 200W. I really like the idea of that 465, just have to see the reviews...
    I have converted several people to GPS, they wouldn't go back..
  7. Highgear

    Highgear Light Load Member

    Jul 28, 2008
    Thanks for the info.! This will help a lot of drivers!
  8. jeepskate99

    jeepskate99 Road Train Member

    Most Garmin models can utilize truck routing, but not inside the unit itself. What you need to do is make your routes in Mapsource, which offers the option of truck routing, then send the route to the GPS unit. Mapsource is accurate as far as I can tell. I used it to simulate many routes from door to door and it hasn't routed on a restricted road or under a low bridge yet according to the MC Atlas.
  9. lhk531

    lhk531 Bobtail Member

    Jul 11, 2009
    detroit lakes, mn
    what ever u do dont buy a pc miller 430, they wont help u fix it. I bought one april 14th and it wont find nunbered streets. and they want another $99.00 to update it. that is like paying $40000.00 for a new car, then taking it in for a oil change and them telling u to pay another $5000. to get it fixed. I have talked to several drivers having the same problems.
  10. LSU Tiger

    LSU Tiger Banned for spamming

    May 25, 2008
    Baton Rouge, LA
    I simply use Streets & Trips on my laptop. While it doesn't do truck routing, you can adjust the routing controls to where it will route on truck routes most of the time.

    Anyway, when my company sends me my fuel location they also send me the trip routing. Thus, I just sync the route in Streets & Trips to the truck route my company sends me, which is very easy to do since in Streets & Trips you can easily drag and drop routes.

    However, because I adjusted and fine tuned my Streets & Trips routing controls, 98 percent of the time the route generated by Streets & Trips will be identical to the truck routing my company sent me, and if it isn't identical it is just a simple matter of dragging and then dropping the route to the correct route. Once it is identical, I then save it using the company trip number.

    Thus, instead of spending hundreds of dollars for a standalone GPS device, I simply use Streets & Trips on my laptop for $39.00.

    When I'm driving into shippers and consignees I always use the GPS trail feature in Streets and Trips, which marks on the map exactly where my truck traveled.

    Another thing I like with Streets & Trips is the panoramic view you get during navigation, which you can't get with a standalone GPS device, and for trip planning you can't beat it because you can make the maps as big or as small as you need it to be and unlike Motor Carrier Road Atlases, Streets & Trips contains street level mapping for every town and city in the USA and Canada.

    I can remember back in the good old days when I use to use the old fashion Motor Carrier Road Atlas to do all of my trip planning, that on top of my reading glasses I had to also use a magnifying glass just to read the maps, plus most of the time there was no street level mapping, which left you at the mercy of your directions and probably 50 percent of the time the directions ended up being wrong. Those were the good old days!

    Hence, like the others said in this thread, once you use GPS navigation you will never go back if you can help it. Plus like someone else also said if you ever have to drive at night when the fog is so bad you can't read or see the road signs, then you will really appreciate having GPS navigation.

    Further, not having truck specific routing isn't an issue at all for me, as I just sync my routes in Streets & Trips with my company supplied truck routes and directions.

    In any event, I would never waste one cent on any GPS device that does truck specific routing half a-- because then you are just asking for trouble, and all the devices that claim they do truck specific routing currently on the market today do truck routing half a-- per all the reviews and are therefore junk. Not only that, but they also seem to be plagued with a tons of other problems as well.

    As a matter of fact, I can't foresee any truck routing GPS device ever being accurate enough to depend on because the maps are at least 2 to 3 years old at a minimum at the time they are released for sale. Not only that but the maps that are released for sale also will contain numerous errors and inaccuracies as well, even the maps that come from the best mapping data companies like Navteq will have a lot errors.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 23, 2010
  11. bangngears

    bangngears Medium Load Member

    Oct 30, 2008
    metamora, Ohio
    garmin has a new gps out made for big trucks but it is 500.00. i bought a garmin 650 on amazon for and it has a truck SETTING and it works great.
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