Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Garmin Montana & AMPS mount + ZEN Overland Top Clamp

Lucy has just bought a new bike and decided to upgrade her GPS to a Garmin Montana 650 with the AMPS mount to hold it and power it whilst out on the lanes. I've been using one of these for about a year now and as Lucy & I get closer to our six month long trip, we're just setting the bikes up with this in mind and trying to match things to reduce any extra spares etc...

Garmin Montana - 600/650 & 2017 versions 610/680

AMPS mount for Montana Unit
So, I saw a post on Facebook from Gabe at Zen Overland asking if anybody wanted to test a new design of mount he'd made. It was the bracket to mount the Garmin AMPS mount onto the handlebar bolts in a landscape position. I use the Montana in the portrait position on my bike so asked if he had one that could do this.
Mark 1 version - Landscape only

Mark 2 Version - landscape & portrait
Over a brief conversation it was agreed he'd have a look at it and see what he could come up with. A couple of weeks later I got an FB message from him telling me he'd sorted it out and did I want one to test . So we had a chat, and a few days later this appeared in the post.

mmm Shiny New stuff!

What a beauty this is, so I quickly fitted it to Lucy's bike, remembering to add plenty of thread lock to the original KTM bolts to keep them in place. As I mounted the AMPS cradle I found the wiring was too bulky to sit the cradle into portrait mode, so I've mounted it in landscape for the moment. I sent Gabe some pics but he'd already realised this and had come up with some spacers to resolve the issue. He's sending me some so once they come through I'll fit them and get Lucy's GPS set up how we want it.

Spacers on their way!!

The quality of this bracket is lovely to see and feel. It matches the triple clamps colour as a bonus and sits really nicely onto the handle bars, Lucy is happy as she has a new piece of bling to add to her shiny bike and it looks much nicer than my home made attempt with a sheet of aluminium!! Once we've had it on for a time I'll update this post with anything that crops up but I suspect it'll just sit on the bars now until I have to do the head bearings at some point. Perfect, kit that doesn't need much maintenance!!!

 If you decide you want to add this bit of lovely kit to your bike, you can order them HERE. Speak to Gabe as well as he's really approachable and knows his stuff!

At some point when I get the chance I'll write up something about the GPS units I've used on the bikes, skidoos and various other vehicles and how they faired over time. They've been well abused by me over the years and generally they have all been really reliable. The software behind the scenes has been the issue I've usually found, something which has changed for the better as my knowledge has grown I guess as well.