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Suzidude

Caravan friendly sat nav

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Hi all

 

After towing a single axle for 6 years we’ve just changed to a twin axle and I’m due to tow it to Bude (without my usual towing partner) in May so looking for a good sat nav that “knows” I’m towing a large van behind and that won’t send me via country lanes.

 

any recommendations please? 

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13 hours ago, Suzidude said:

Hi all

 

After towing a single axle for 6 years we’ve just changed to a twin axle and I’m due to tow it to Bude (without my usual towing partner) in May so looking for a good sat nav that “knows” I’m towing a large van behind and that won’t send me via country lanes.

 

any recommendations please? 

Have a look at the Garmin range they do one for caravans (camper) which you put all the details in car and caravan length ,height width etc we bought ours from Aldi might be worth having a look at there website as they are doing caravan items from 11/04/2019

Martin

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I have the TomTom caravan. It recognises height and width restrictions, but I don't think any can be relied upon to always avoid country lanes.

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I use a Garmin Caravan version, works very well. Tried a TomTom caravan version & I found the routing was suspect sent it back. I tow mainly on my own now & the Garmin can be used with voice instructions, works well. 

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I've done Bude a couple of times when we had our twin axle & my bog standard TomTom took me there without taking me down narrow country lanes. 

 

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I live in Bude and tow in the other direction all the time. Only really two main ways in from the North,

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NONE of the “caravan specific” sat navs are perfect.

 

Those that say you can “set your caravan size etc” are being a little “misleading” Yes you can set the size of YOUR unit, but you need to bear in mind that all of the sat nav companies use about 3 suppliers  of data in respect of roads. But they certainly don’t know, or include in their data, the ACTUAL width etc of every road, they only know about those with set width limits! If you think about it it’s simply not possible to measure the width of every metre of every road is it? 

 

What they DO have is information about any particularly low bridges, weight restrictions and width restrictions. In addition they have very clever algorithms in the software to predict (with reasonable accuracy)  which roads MIGHT be narrower than a width that THEY define. For example the algorithm may be set to predict that a road is narrower than say 2.7m  (to “allow” a caravan to be routed along it) but it won’t be able to say it’s ACTUALLY only 2m wide at one particular point UNLESS there is a statutory width restriction that they have in their database.

 

So basically caravan sat navs are pretty good, but they are not, by any means perfect so should NOT be totally relied on.

 

I am sure others will post that their particular make of “caravan” sat nav is perfect when what they REALLY mean is that it’s better than a car version (which they all are) and has not (yet) sent them down a “wrong” road.

 

Andy

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I have looked at caravan/truck specific Sat Nav's and am not convinced as to their total reliability whilst towing and my needs.

 

My outfit is about 42ft long and I do not feel assured that I would not get directed into problems at some time.

 

There will be those out there for whom they have worked quite well.

 

I do use a TomTom GO 6000 as a secondary feature but always use my Truckers Britain for route planning along with Google Earth for the fine and final site approach detail.

 

 

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Posted (edited)
43 minutes ago, Mr Plodd said:

NONE of the “caravan specific” sat navs are perfect.

 

Those that say you can “set your caravan size etc” are being a little “misleading” Yes you can set the size of YOUR unit, but you need to bear in mind that all of the sat nav companies use about 3 suppliers  of data in respect of roads. But they certainly don’t know, or include in their data, the ACTUAL width etc of every road, they only know about those with set width limits! If you think about it it’s simply not possible to measure the width of every metre of every road is it? 

 

I had it in writing from Aguri that HERE mapping which they use, includes measurements of road width and certain 'road conditions' these taken from photographs.  Whether they use Google or their own, I know not and, of course, there will be some issues with outdated 'snaps'

 

I have just found the letter from Aguri in response to a question of mine:  Are roads measured?

 

Not measured no, but we 'weight' them and 'penalise' roads that are too narrow or the surface unsuitable. When the maps are compiled - they are videoed - I am sure you have seen Google’s video vans. These videos are then reviewed and the road assigned a massive amount of attributes - it's seriously complex stuff.

The work is done by the company that provides the 'raw' map data. They are called 'Here'. I should also add that this is my language and 'Here' will use different technical terminology to explain how they assign the different attributes to each roads and what those attributes they are. There is though a sophisticated grading system for every section of road. Here supply that data to us and then it is up to us how we interpret and use that data to create routes depending on the attributes the customer enters. This last part is our expertise and what differentiates us from say Garmin and how they might create a route.

 

Just adding my thoughts on this, I suppose given the camera is at a fixed focal length, it will be quite easy to determine the width of every part of the road being photographed.

 

Edited by SamD

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c£400 !!!!!!!

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A free option is the Navmii app for Smart Phones (if you have one).  It has a setting for vehicle type. Compared to Google Maps it seems stick to main routes when a large vehicle is selected and does actually modify the route when switching between Car and Truck/RV.  Again, use at your discretion. 

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1 hour ago, Griff said:

I have looked at caravan/truck specific Sat Nav's and am not convinced as to their total reliability whilst towing and my needs.

 

 

 

No system will ever be totally reliable, whether sat nav, maps or aerial photographs.

Trees grow outwards, hedges vary in width depending on when they were last cut, councils put safety fences round corners, roadworks change  on a daily basis, stupidly parked cars crop up everywhere.

Quality dedicated sat navs are as good as you're going to get, short of having a pilot car in front of you, like abnormal loads often do.

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3 hours ago, daveat92 said:

c£400 !!!!!!!

As our old Camping and Caravan unit packed up :angry: we had to invest in a new old.  We bought the TomTom Go Camper off Amazon and it set us back just over £300 so about £79 cheaper than the TT website shop!

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2 hours ago, Stevan said:

No system will ever be totally reliable, whether sat nav, maps or aerial photographs.

Trees grow outwards, hedges vary in width depending on when they were last cut, councils put safety fences round corners, roadworks change  on a daily basis, stupidly parked cars crop up everywhere.

Quality dedicated sat navs are as good as you're going to get, short of having a pilot car in front of you, like abnormal loads often do.

Excellent post. The popular makes currently around are Garmin Camper and TomTom Camper. They are both very good, so I would go for the best offer of either brand.

12 minutes ago, Durbanite said:

As our old Camping and Caravan unit packed up :angry: we had to invest in a new old.  We bought the TomTom Go Camper off Amazon and it set us back just over £300 so about £79 cheaper than the TT website shop!

How have you got on with this one? What maps, software updates and services were included in the deal, and what price?

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8 minutes ago, Ern said:

Excellent post. The popular makes currently around are Garmin Camper and TomTom Camper. They are both very good, so I would go for the best offer of either brand.

How have you got on with this one? What maps, software updates and services were included in the deal, and what price?

Came standard with Europe map and camping sites but we downloaded Archies and cc CLs POIs onto the unit along with a couple of other POIs.  Updates using wifi so no issue there.  Cost £307 on Amazon.  Quite easy to use once you play around and understand it.  We can enter the dimensions of the car and caravan unit or just the car on its own.  Also set maximum sped limits.  Notifies you if you are about to enter a lower speed limit area.  Lifetime free map updates and also free live traffic updates.

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2 hours ago, Durbanite said:

Came standard with Europe map and camping sites but we downloaded Archies and cc CLs POIs onto the unit along with a couple of other POIs.  Updates using wifi so no issue there.  Cost £307 on Amazon.  Quite easy to use once you play around and understand it.  We can enter the dimensions of the car and caravan unit or just the car on its own.  Also set maximum sped limits.  Notifies you if you are about to enter a lower speed limit area.  Lifetime free map updates and also free live traffic updates.

Thanks for the info.

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10 hours ago, SamD said:

 

I had it in writing from Aguri that HERE mapping which they use, includes measurements of road width and certain 'road conditions' these taken from photographs.  Whether they use Google or their own, I know not and, of course, there will be some issues with outdated 'snaps'

 

I have just found the letter from Aguri in response to a question of mine:  Are roads measured?

 

Not measured no, but we 'weight' them and 'penalise' roads that are too narrow or the surface unsuitable. When the maps are compiled - they are videoed - I am sure you have seen Google’s video vans. These videos are then reviewed and the road assigned a massive amount of attributes - it's seriously complex stuff.

The work is done by the company that provides the 'raw' map data. They are called 'Here'. I should also add that this is my language and 'Here' will use different technical terminology to explain how they assign the different attributes to each roads and what those attributes they are. There is though a sophisticated grading system for every section of road. Here supply that data to us and then it is up to us how we interpret and use that data to create routes depending on the attributes the customer enters. This last part is our expertise and what differentiates us from say Garmin and how they might create a route.

 

Just adding my thoughts on this, I suppose given the camera is at a fixed focal length, it will be quite easy to determine the width of every part of the road being photographed.

 

Thanks for posting. My old TomTom is still working, it has camper maps added, but it is now about seven years old as does from time to time misbehave! I have never had much luck with Garmin in the past. I would go for a new TomTom if they had a simpler way of adding POI's which they used to have. The Aguri seems interesting, especially as they also have built in dash cams. Do you happen to know how poi's are loaded on this make?

 

David

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1 hour ago, klyne said:

Thanks for posting. My old TomTom is still working, it has camper maps added, but it is now about seven years old as does from time to time misbehave! I have never had much luck with Garmin in the past. I would go for a new TomTom if they had a simpler way of adding POI's which they used to have. The Aguri seems interesting, especially as they also have built in dash cams. Do you happen to know how poi's are loaded on this make?

 

David

 

Do you know what format your POIs are in please?  If they are in .csv format (excel ss) with the Longitude in Col A, Lat Col B and Name in C, then they can be imported by simply connecting the Aguri to your pc etc via USB (as storage) then copy and paste. You will have noticed it is pre-loaded with CMC, C&CC sites, truck stops and transport caffs.

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17 hours ago, klyne said:

Thanks for posting. My old TomTom is still working, it has camper maps added, but it is now about seven years old as does from time to time misbehave! I have never had much luck with Garmin in the past. I would go for a new TomTom if they had a simpler way of adding POI's which they used to have. The Aguri seems interesting, especially as they also have built in dash cams. Do you happen to know how poi's are loaded on this make?

David

The new Camper Go makes it easier to add POIs than previously, but you can only do it through My Drive (not the Connect version) and the My drive only seems to work properly in MS Edge.  I downloaded the POIs onto my hard drive, went into MyDrive and downloaded the .ov2 file only.  You also have the opportunity to modify the name of the file.  Did this with CL POIs downloaded from PocketGPS and Caravan Club.  Not sure where to find POIs for C&CC CS's?

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21 hours ago, SamD said:

 

Do you know what format your POIs are in please?  If they are in .csv format (excel ss) with the Longitude in Col A, Lat Col B and Name in C, then they can be imported by simply connecting the Aguri to your pc etc via USB (as storage) then copy and paste. You will have noticed it is pre-loaded with CMC, C&CC sites, truck stops and transport caffs.

That is interesting as it seems they use the Windows FAT32 file system that TomTom used to use. It obviously deserves a closer look. Thanks.  

 

David

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We have the Garmin Camper. It has been very disappointing, often sending us down unsuitable routes. My Rig is 42 feet long  so not easy to turn round and backing it up any distance is tedious. Case in point: en route to a site East of  Cherbourg. On the map it looked pretty straightforward, head straight up North then turn East and follow the coast. Garmin took us off the N13 just north of Valognes and sent us diagonally across country on roads that got steadily worse until at one point we were driving along almost a dirt track with grass growing up the middle for about two miles.

The Garmin was similarly unimpressive in Devon and Cornwall last year. We ditched it and reverted to a road atlas.

We've tried everything that Garmin have suggested to no avail.

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Until all roads are measured and noted by the electronic mapping people no navigation system is going to be capable of routing and avoiding such roads.  What the navigation system does is to check width, height and weight restrictions on the mapping alongside those that you have put in to your vehicle profile.  We have the Garmin Camper 770 and so far it has followed our instructions fairly well  BUT then we only have a ''small'' LR Discovery 4 and an Airstream travel trailer (Yankee speak for caravan) .

 

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12 hours ago, Tuningdrew said:

We have the Garmin Camper. It has been very disappointing, often sending us down unsuitable routes. My Rig is 42 feet long  so not easy to turn round and backing it up any distance is tedious. Case in point: en route to a site East of  Cherbourg. On the map it looked pretty straightforward, head straight up North then turn East and follow the coast. Garmin took us off the N13 just north of Valognes and sent us diagonally across country on roads that got steadily worse until at one point we were driving along almost a dirt track with grass growing up the middle for about two miles.

The Garmin was similarly unimpressive in Devon and Cornwall last year. We ditched it and reverted to a road atlas.

We've tried everything that Garmin have suggested to no avail.

All sat navs have this problem, They can avoid height, weight, width restrictions and make some allowances for particularly tight turns and hump backed bridges but they cannot determine exactly what you, as an individual driver, would consider to be the threshold of acceptability where there are no formal restrictions.

The country lane you describe may be acceptable to some if it saved significant mileage and time but is clearly unacceptable to you. 

 

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On ‎10‎/‎04‎/‎2019 at 21:22, Tuningdrew said:

We have the Garmin Camper. It has been very disappointing, often sending us down unsuitable routes. My Rig is 42 feet long  so not easy to turn round and backing it up any distance is tedious. Case in point: en route to a site East of  Cherbourg. On the map it looked pretty straightforward, head straight up North then turn East and follow the coast. Garmin took us off the N13 just north of Valognes and sent us diagonally across country on roads that got steadily worse until at one point we were driving along almost a dirt track with grass growing up the middle for about two miles.

The Garmin was similarly unimpressive in Devon and Cornwall last year. We ditched it and reverted to a road atlas.

We've tried everything that Garmin have suggested to no avail.

It's all down to how you have the GPS set up. If its setup to shortest or quickest routes a GPS will take you virtually along any grass tracks. I have been there and done it and learned the hard way. In the end you are the decider, do I take the turning or not. For the last 4 cars we have owned, which have built in dash GPS's and I wont pay £120 for map updates, so my route is planned with military type planning. An up to date Michelin road map, a print out from Google maps and use the GPS as a backup. It works for us.

Trying something new this Easter away weekend, off line route mapping. Plan your route at home on line, down load it, in my case a Samsung Galaxy tab 7, using the map app, with the download route off line!  

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, David P said:

 

Trying something new this Easter away weekend, off line route mapping. Plan your route at home on line, down load it, in my case a Samsung Galaxy tab 7, using the map app, with the download route off line!  

 

Been doing it that way for almost 30 years !!  Trying to remember the program name ...  they sold out to Microsoft and it became Autoroute  --  now do it using the Garmin programs.

Edited by TedNewman

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