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Map software with my BeeLine GPS?

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mparker59

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I have a beeline GPS tracker andhave it set up so that it my Kenwood TH-D7 automagically adds a waypoint to my handheld GPS each time a packet arrives. The handheld GPS then give me azimuth and distance to the last reported position of the rocket. It's not bad, but I want more. When the rocket gets near the ground I often lose the signal - so the last packet isn't where it is, it's where it was. The GPS only stores the last waypoint rather than the full track - maybe I oughta switch to dog trackers.

What I want is a mapping program on my laptop that will draw a map with a trendline showing all of the positions that came from the rocket - so I can extraoplate from the last positon to the actual rocket.

APRS+SA does't cut it - it's pretty hard to use, can only auto update if you can score a copy of a very old version of Street Atlas, uses street maps,not topos, etc.

There's one that works with MapPoint, but it would cost me some $ to get it and MapPoint and hope I liked it - can anybody vouch for it?

The GPSFlight guys were really nice and let me have a trial license, but so far I can't get it to recognize the data coming in - their data window shows that they're seeing the packets on the com port - but they never offer to allow me to trac them.

Does anybody use BeeLine GPS with mapping software? Please share any and all tips.

Mike
 

troj

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There's some free APRS software out there that will let you do what you're after. I've played with it, but it's been a couple years, so I don't remember the specific name.

It takes a bit of fiddling to get it setup, and the software I used wanted to use a software TNC running on the laptop, rather than taking the data from a separate TNC.

-Kevin
 

Bravo52

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For years I used a program called FalconView in the Air Force. It was developed by a group out of Georgia Tech. I believe at some point the AF was going to make it open source. I believe it will do all the things you want. It has the capability to overlay Topo charts down to the some pretty small scales. Additionally, you can overlay satalite and aerial photography.
We used to plug a simple GPS into is and get a basic moving map.

Google should find it.
 

mparker59

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The GPSFlight guys were really nice and let me have a trial license, but so far I can't get it to recognize the data coming in - their data window shows that they're seeing the packets on the com port - but they never offer to allow me to trac them.

Mike
I got it to work the way I want with GPSTeam - the software from GPSFlight. I need a little time to smooth up the rough edges and ten I'll write up some stuff on how one can use 70cm APRS transmitter (Beeline GPS) and handheld radio with built in TNC (Kenwood TH-D7 - discontinued!?), and laptop with GPSTeam to see real time track of your rocket. Granted you could just buy the entire data chain from GPSFlight, but I already had the Beeline(s) and the Kenwood.

And, thanks for the tip on FalconView - extremely cool, looks like it will be available open source any day now and could be modified to do the same thing that I'm doing.

Mike
 

JAllen

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I do think the Kenwood DX7A/G has been discontinued. I used my Yaesu VX-8R to receive the signal from my Beeline. It decoded the call sign correctly at the very least. I never left my Beeline GPS on long enough for it to get a correct lock though, but it was transmitting coordinates which were displayed by the radio.
 

troj

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I do think the Kenwood DX7A/G has been discontinued.
Correct

I used my Yaesu VX-8R to receive the signal from my Beeline.
Okay, if your goal was jealousy, you just accomplished it!

I want a VX-8r; just a matter of not having the available cash for one....

-Kevin
 

JAllen

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Okay, if your goal was jealousy, you just accomplished it!

I want a VX-8r; just a matter of not having the available cash for one....

-Kevin
Sorry! I wasn't trying to, but I guess you should start saving the cash (Burn less propellant and use the money to buy one) as it is a really nice radio. That said, I was surprised to see that it was smaller (thinner, but not much) than my old VX-7R even though it is more feature packed.
 

n5wd

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I used my Yaesu VX-8R to receive the signal from my Beeline. It decoded the call sign correctly at the very least. I never left my Beeline GPS on long enough for it to get a correct lock though, but it was transmitting coordinates which were displayed by the radio.
Now that you've had a chance to read the manual, have you found any way to output the NMEA data from the VX-8R to a GPS unit or computer for further use/display/waypoints?

Try this experiment, if you get a chance (I think I saw where you were getting the GPS antenna for the VX-8R, also) ... set up the B/GPS some distance away and get a fix on it on the VX8R. Then as you walk the indicated track back to the B/GPS unit, does the VX-8R update the heading/distance very quickly (quickly enough to be used if you were trying to find a rocket in the woods?).
 

JAllen

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Now that you've had a chance to read the manual, have you found any way to output the NMEA data from the VX-8R to a GPS unit or computer for further use/display/waypoints?

Try this experiment, if you get a chance (I think I saw where you were getting the GPS antenna for the VX-8R, also) ... set up the B/GPS some distance away and get a fix on it on the VX8R. Then as you walk the indicated track back to the B/GPS unit, does the VX-8R update the heading/distance very quickly (quickly enough to be used if you were trying to find a rocket in the woods?).
Unfortunately I didn't buy the GPS Antenna yet. I plan to get one after LDRS before the next Red Glare (RG 7?), but I wanted to spend the money on some avionics upgrades for my two stage flight at LDRS instead. I'll look into outputting the NMEA data sometime this weekend.
 
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