Tag Archives: Motorcycle overland

BMW R1150 GS; setting up the dashboard rig

R1150 GS R&D continues this week, trying to find a robust overland/touring SATNAV mount. I’ve previously used combinations of nothing at all (!), frequent stops to check road atlas’ in roadside garages, homemade sketch map and road names on the tank (definitely the best low tech solution) and an iphone map app (heavy on data allowance on the 3G, average maps and poor response times).

BMW R1150 GS set up

I’ve recently upgraded my Garmin GPS; mainly used for work, from a Foretrex (laughably inappropriate for touring, destroying batteries for 2D graphics) to a Garmin 62ST. Techy stuff I know but it’s got a great satellite reception and is robust enough to cope with me. The ‘t’ refers to the ‘topos’ already loaded (100k Europe and a basic Global basemap).

I’ve rigged it to the left of the bars, on the connection weld, reachable with my left (non throttle) hand and easily seen. So far so good. Powering whilst riding is the next challenge, difficult because once the USB cable is in the GPS isn’t weatherproof. I’m not a ‘fair weather rider’ and can’t afford to lose the nav in the middle of a rain cloud!

Under the left of the dash is the Hella spotlight control, usefully rigged with a green LED to confirm when on, handy when tired and slow. The DIN – 12v socket connector is fitted on the upper side of the left fairing, this also has a green LED lit when on; again to help when I’m tired at the end of a long day. Sounds like I’m 94 but it helped a surprising amount.

The lead from the 12v socket is powering my iPhone in the Hein Gericke bar case. Workable but not great, difficult to see in sunlight and impossible to control through two layers of plastic casing and bike gloves!

Next step is to get a bar mounted case for the iPhone, that will go on the right side, near the Autocom Intercom headphone jack. That’s the one going into the bar case from the right hand side.