Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
PPTB

Best coord method for hides

Recommended Posts

I downloaded a gps coordinate app for cache placement and did the averaging trick... popped the resulting coord into Google maps and was off by probably 30 feet. Another coord from the same method was almost spot on. Wife showed me how to drop a pin on Google maps and pull the coord that way. 

 

Without a dedicated GPS, how do you get accurate coords for your cache hides???

Share this post


Link to post

I take several readings and sit the GPS at GZ to allow it to settle. I find that the coordinates on Google maps are quite good for where I live and they usually closely match my Garmin coordinates, but according to some others, they claim that's not the case everywhere. However, wherever you are it's still a good idea to put them in Goggle maps to check the coordinates are in the right area, and not (I have seen this more than one) say 150 metres out.

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, PPTB said:

Without a dedicated GPS

 

You didn't say what you aren't without.  So if I detail the best iPhone App that I've tested, and then you say you are also without iPhone, it's tougher to divine an answer for you. B)

 

Although IOS and Android have "GPS Averaging" Apps that are kind of close to what I could do with a dedicated GPS, I greatly prefer the ability of a Garmin GPS to take many waypoints and save them individually, and I select a candidate or two.  Each time I return to the intended cache spot, I check my selected waypoint to see if it's still a good one.  An average of many points is... SURPRISE!... an average. But the results are not terrible in GPS Averaging Apps if you're diligent enough to put the actual work into doing "waypoint averaging".  "GPS Averaging" isn't the best thing for everyone, it's actually more like a whole new level of complicated. “GPS Averaging” gives me coordinates I least like, but I'm not actually returning in all seasons, times of day, in all weather... it's a lot of work to do it, if one's plan is to do “GPS Averaging”. A suitable plan may be to instead take a whole bunch of individual points, and select the one that is most consistently close.

 

I absolutely never use Google Maps to find my cache coordinates, and anyway my caches tend to be among trees in a forest, so I can't just drop a pin.  If your waypoints are over 30 feet off all the time, how are you even finding caches?  Whatever you're doing that gets you finding the cache (really good hints?), that's how you set up your cache page.  If you can't get close by using methods that cause suitable precision (letting the GPS reading settle, choosing a likely point and testing it, whatever), finders may provide help, such as mentioning how far off you are.  Or they provide coordinate corrections.  If you see that in your cache logs, see what you can do to improve the coordinates.

 

Good luck!

 

Edited by kunarion
  • Upvote 1
  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post

If you don't trust your coordinates, then test them.

 

Enter your coordinates into your device, and then approach the cache location from at least 100ft/30m away. The arrow should point right at the cache location as you approach. Repeat the process, approaching the cache location from various directions, from at least 100ft/30m away each time. No matter which direction you approach from, the arrow should point right at the cache location.

 

If it doesn't, then adjust your coordinates until it does.

 

Bonus points for repeating the test on another day when the GPS satellites are in a different configuration.

 

Also, the Help Center article How to Get Accurate Coordinates should prove useful.
 

  • Helpful 3

Share this post


Link to post
32 minutes ago, niraD said:

Enter your coordinates into your device, and then approach the cache location from at least 100ft/30m away. The arrow should point right at the cache location as you approach. Repeat the process, approaching the cache location from various directions, from at least 100ft/30m away each time. No matter which direction you approach from, the arrow should point right at the cache location.

 

That's pretty much all I ever do, unless I'm playing around with “GPS Averaging” just to see what it does. :)

 

I allow my GPS to settle down, save a bunch of waypoints, pick one candidate, then approach the cache from a few directions to test it, and that's it. Done in a few minutes. When I re-visit my intended hiding spot, I again follow my chosen waypoint. I like to get it as close as I possibly can, but even that first try is almost always just fine for Geocaching purposes.

 

Not every “Phone” is ideal for precise waypoints, even when particular phones are compared. Some are faster than others, or jumpier than others. My iPad doesn't even have a GPS sensor, so it can be miles off, using what “Location Services” it has. You may get a dud, but the average smartphone is OK. You simply need to find a bunch of caches (or even set some waypoints and find them), until you get a feel for what your phone is telling you.

 

 

Edited by kunarion

Share this post


Link to post
5 hours ago, PPTB said:

I downloaded a gps coordinate app for cache placement and did the averaging trick... popped the resulting coord into Google maps and was off by probably 30 feet. Another coord from the same method was almost spot on. Wife showed me how to drop a pin on Google maps and pull the coord that way. 

 

Without a dedicated GPS, how do you get accurate coords for your cache hides???

 

I am using Garmin GLO to get accurate coordinates into my phone.

 

When using a GPS receiver don't forget to raise it over your head and point the integral antenna (front side) toward the sky. If you keep the device in front of you, your body prevents the best reception.

 

Share this post


Link to post

Keep in mind that Google Maps can be off, too. So you can look at it for a general idea (to make sure your coordinates aren't pointing to the other side of the world), but don't use it to get coordinates for your cache listing.

  • Upvote 1
  • Helpful 3

Share this post


Link to post
15 hours ago, PPTB said:

I downloaded a gps coordinate app for cache placement and did the averaging trick... popped the resulting coord into Google maps and was off by probably 30 feet. Another coord from the same method was almost spot on. Wife showed me how to drop a pin on Google maps and pull the coord that way. 

Without a dedicated GPS, how do you get accurate coords for your cache hides???

 

There's very-little difference in "accuracy" between phones and "dedicated" GPSrs today.  :)

 - And "accuracy" for civilian GPS is still around ten feet.  We find caches around twenty feet the norm in this hobby.

 

We mark a spot.   Go back to parking (or a good distance away if real far...), have a smoke, grab a drink, and head back by those coordinates. 

If real different, we'll mark the spot again.  If way-off, we might do that a coupla times.

We have a lotta iron ore, and hikers do call our area rocksylvania, so sometimes we'll even come back another day before we're comfortable to  present it for publish.

 

  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, cerberus1 said:

There's very-little difference in "accuracy" between phones and "dedicated" GPSrs today.

 

Right, the same math works in both devices. Only relevant change is the quality of the input signal, not the CPU.

 

The antenna of iPhone looks this (the tiny part in tweetzers)

iphone_wifi_antenna_470x.png?v=151587134

 

 

Garmin GLO antenna looks like this (The huge blue part on the board)

glonassgarmin3.jpg

 

Do you know why Garmin is using so large part instead of the tiny replacement used in iPhone?

 

Let me guess... it makes this device work in woods. :D

 

  • Upvote 1
  • Helpful 1
  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post
14 hours ago, arisoft said:

 

 

When using a GPS receiver don't forget to raise it over your head and point the integral antenna (front side) toward the sky. If you keep the device in front of you, your body prevents the best reception.

 

I do this often but then on reading the above the thought came to me that searchers don't approach a cache holding their device at arms length in the air. So that raises a question in my mind that should I just hold my GPS normally as if searching?

BTW I use the waypoint averaging function of my Garmin (sometimes I'll use two at a time). I'll do several averaged readings then when I get home I manually write them all down and average the averages.

  • Upvote 1
  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post
1 minute ago, colleda said:

... but then on reading the above the thought came to me that searchers don't approach a cache holding their device at arms length in the air. So that raises a question in my mind that should I just hold my GPS normally as if searching?

 

Don't know if this will help, but we have noticed (with a few handheld GPSrs), that if I keep my phone in a pants  pocket and the GPSr on a belt clip,  it'd be off sometimes a few feet.

Happens often enough that when hiking,  I've clipped the GPSr to a pack strap to be a bit further away.

Doesn't seem to happen when the GPSr is away from the phone, so we kinda ruled out the worn, old bod (even with rods n screws).     

 - So ... when we're nearing GZ, it's remove it from the belt clip,  and hold in my hand "normally",  whether searching or marking a waypoint.  :)

 - I'm definitely not gonna get caught walking around like I give up/should be arrested with my arms in the air.    :D

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
9 hours ago, colleda said:

I do this often but then on reading the above the thought came to me that searchers don't approach a cache holding their device at arms length in the air. So that raises a question in my mind that should I just hold my GPS normally as if searching?

 

Only if you want some extra challenge :) I approach caches with my arm raised.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
On ‎9‎/‎15‎/‎2019 at 1:11 AM, arisoft said:

When using a GPS receiver don't forget to raise it over your head and point the integral antenna (front side) toward the sky. If you keep the device in front of you, your body prevents the best reception.

 

Keep in mind that the antenna isn't always in the same spot. For example, the Garmin Oregon 600 and 650 have the antenna on the back, so you'll get the best results if you hold it upside-down. I don't know what genius at Garmin thought that was a good idea...

  • Surprised 1

Share this post


Link to post
9 hours ago, The A-Team said:

 

Keep in mind that the antenna isn't always in the same spot. For example, the Garmin Oregon 600 and 650 have the antenna on the back, so you'll get the best results if you hold it upside-down. I don't know what genius at Garmin thought that was a good idea...

 

It is easier to read when the display is towards the user when the device is above your head. But did they remember to add this important information in the owner's manual?

Edited by arisoft
  • Funny 2

Share this post


Link to post

Except modern smartphones use a combination of different tools to assess location, from GNSS to masts to WiFi networks. 

 

Smartphone also tend to sacrifice some location accuracy by turning the GPS chip on and off. You can use apps which disable that, and use the GPS chip constantly, to get a better location.

 

FWIW, I now use the MyGPSLocation app on my Android phone which seems no more or less accurate than my very expensive Garmin. But the phone can save the co-ordinates.

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, daddybeth said:

Except modern smartphones use a combination of different tools to assess location, from GNSS to masts to WiFi networks. 

 

Smartphone also tend to sacrifice some location accuracy by turning the GPS chip on and off. You can use apps which disable that, and use the GPS chip constantly, to get a better location.

 

FWIW, I now use the MyGPSLocation app on my Android phone which seems no more or less accurate than my very expensive Garmin. But the phone can save the co-ordinates.

 

I had an iPad for a couple of days before I figured out it had no GPS sensor.  I bought it on sale without realizing it had very different specs from more expensive versions.  It seemed very inaccurate, and very slow to update.  Yet it did get new coords as I drove.  Very tricky!  It was actually pretty hard to figure out that it wasn't using "GPS" for the location updates, when digging around in the device settings and Apps ("inaccurate and slow" doesn't tell me that it's not using GPS, it could well be that the thing is a dud).  This one uses "Location Services", and it decides what it will use.

 

So you'll never see me around here insisting that, collectively, "phones" work comparably to a handheld hiking GPS.  Not until we know more about the phone, and its installed Apps, and its hardware accessories.

 

Edited by kunarion
  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
On 9/21/2019 at 8:39 PM, kunarion said:

I had an iPad for a couple of days before I figured out it had no GPS sensor.  I bought it on sale without realizing it had very different specs from more expensive versions.  It seemed very inaccurate, and very slow to update.  Yet it did get new coords as I drove.  Very tricky!  It was actually pretty hard to figure out that it wasn't using "GPS" for the location updates, when digging around in the device settings and Apps ("inaccurate and slow" doesn't tell me that it's not using GPS, it could well be that the thing is a dud).  This one uses "Location Services", and it decides what it will use.

 

":Location Services" is just a wrapper.   It provides applications which need location information an interface which can be called without specifically getting data from a GPS, cell tower triangulation, or whatever a device is capable of using to determine location.   This sort of abstraction is common in software development.  The fact that it's called Location Services doesn't mean that it's *not* using an embedded GPS chip on the device.  On an Android device Location Services are somewhat configurable.  The end user might be able to set the location service to "low accuracy", which would not use an internal GPS even if one was available.  

 

Apparently "wifi" only version of iPads (at least earlier versions) did not include a GPS chip but "Wifi + Cellular" version did.  Both used Location Services to provide coordinates to applications which asked for them.

  • Helpful 2

Share this post


Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

×
×
  • Create New...