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tomc61

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Everything posted by tomc61

  1. I bought a Vista HCx over 2 years ago and had no problems until just recently the adhesive turned to snot. I tried silicone caulk and several kinds of double sided tape and glues. Nothing would stick to the rubber. Then I read this thread and the one quoted. I removed all of the tape, including the clear tape over the case seam, cleanded it with WD-40 (to remove the glue) and isopropyl alcohol (to remove the WD-40), sanded both the rubber piece and the plastic case, cleaned everything with alcohol again, glued it back together with Loctite Extreme, put rubber bands around the rubber piece it to hold it against the case, and let it set for about a day and a half. It appears to be a total success. The Loctite Extreme looks like it stuck to the rubber and case, but I'm afraid to pull on it and test it.
  2. Sea level in a particular area might not really be sea level. Check this out. http://www.esri.com/news/arcuser/0703/geoid1of3.html
  3. Yeah, I got a server error the first time I tried to post this and it didn't show up, so here it is again: I bought my Etrex Vista HCx almost 2 years ago. I have upgraded it each time Garmin released a new version and it is currently at 2.8/2.8. I have never experienced the infamous drift problem until today. Apparently most people that have the drift problem get it after several hours of operation at slow speeds. I have never used mine for more than about 2 hours at a time. There is a hike/bike/horse trail near me that I walk on a regular basis. It used to be a railroad so it is almost flat and straight with no tree cover or signal blocking obstructions. I wear the unit clipped to my jacket at shoulder level so it has a good view of the sky. Under these conditions with WAAS enabled I normally get position errors of 7 to 16 feet or so and have never had the drift problem until today. Today I walked about a mile before I looked at the unit. It showed I was about 1500 feet south of where I should have been (the trail runs east-west). I power cycled the unit and it came back to the correct location. I did not notice what the position error was. I walked another mile or so and this time when I looked at the unit I was over 1/4 mile south of where I should have been and the postion error was 39 feet. I power cycled the unit and it came back to the correct location and with a position error of 8 feet. For some reason I decided to disable WAAS. I then turned around and walked back over 2 miles to my vehicle and I had no drift at all and the position error stayed around 9 to 12 feet. It appears as though turning off WAAS fixed the problem. Again, this is the first time I have ever had this happen. Has anybody else turned WAAS off to see if it had any effect? Tom
  4. That brings up the test screen. It doesn't look like it reset anything.
  5. I can't get mine to reset. How long do you have to hold all 3 buttons? When I hold the upper right button & joystick, nothing happens.
  6. tomc61

    WAAS or Normal

    http://gpsinformation.net/waasgps.htm http://gpsinformation.net/exe/waas.html
  7. APRS creator's home page http://www.ew.usna.edu/~bruninga/aprs.html APRS wiki article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automatic_Pos...eporting_System If you only want to send out your own location you don't need any software and with some radios you don't need any additional hardware except a GPS receiver. If you want to see other people's locations then you need software such as UI-View or WinAPRS, assuming that you have any other hams running APRS in your area, or digipeaters, that are close enough for you to receive.
  8. Maybe not intentionally. The ship's radar or other equipment might interfere with your GPSr. I don't think they could jam or block the GPS frequencies because ships have to use GPS.
  9. Here is a good web page about WAAS http://gpsinformation.net/waasgps.htm
  10. I will have to run my tests again and see if the recent software/firmware updates had any effect. Tom
  11. I have been a ham since 1981. Apparently I am what they call a muggle. I have no interest in geocaching but I am interested in GPS, mapping, etc. and Groundspeak is about the best place I have found for GPS information. I used to be very active on HF digital modes and 220 & 440 FM and messed with APRS a little but I sold most of my rigs when I moved into an antenna restricted place a few years ago.
  12. I used new AA alkaline cells so the voltage should have been a little over 3V but I did not measure it. The Vista HCx menu doesn't have Battery Saver. It only has Normal, GPS Off and Demo Mode. I didn't check Demo Mode. I took all my measurements with the GPSr indoors sitting on the table. It would be interesting to see if anything changes while in a moving vehicle or something. Tom
  13. I read this thread http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showtopic=175670 and decided to see for myself if WAAS uses more power and how much current my Vista HCx draws in real life in various operating modes. I haven't searched this fourm to see if anybody else has already done this. I hooked up my Vista HCx to my Fluke 187 DMM (digital multimeter, which costs more than a Vista HCx) using two AA alkaline cells, a battery holder and some alligator clip leads. WAAS and the electronic compass were initially turned off. After I turned on the Vista HCx, the backlight shut off, and it accquired the satellites, I was getting an average current of 69 mA (milliamps). The reading is not steady, it pulses several mA about once a second which probably means that some circuitry is switched on every second or so when needed and then turned off in order to save power, so I had to use the the Fluke 187's averaging function. It allows you to take maximum, minimum and average readings. I got 79, 67, and 69 mA respectively. I turned on WAAS and was surprised to see the current nearly the same. It only increased 1 mA to 70 mA average. Then I turned the compass on and again was surprised that there was no change. The current was still 70 mA average. The biggest surprise came when I went to the satellite page and selected 'Use With GPS Off'. The average current went up to 98mA. I have absolutely no idea how turning the receiver off makes it draw more current. The display backlight uses the most current. At full brightness the Vista HCx draws 235 mA average current and the lowest level was 76 mA average, which is only slightly higher than when the backlight is off. My conclusion is that leaving WAAS and the compass turned on should not significantly affect battery life. Tom
  14. I recently got Topo US 2008, CN NT 2008, and a Vista HCx. When I have the Topo 2008 map selected in Mapsource and use the Waypoint Tool to create a waypoint, The waypoint fields are populated with the location, default name and symbol, etc. including altitude. If I open a file of existing waypoints, the altitude is either unknown or zero. If I have City Navigator selected and create a waypoint, it also doesn't have an altitude, because CN doesn't have terrain elevation data. I'm trying to figure out if you can force Mapsource to automatically fill in the altitude field when I open a file or at least when I have a file opened an the waypoints all selected. Is this possible? If Mapsource knows the altitude when you create the waypoint, I think it should be able to do it when you open a file or edit waypoints.
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