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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone know how to install an external GPS antenna on the Pilot (or any similar vehicle for that matter)? I've purchased an aftermarket GPS Navigation system (Garmin StreetPilot III Deluxe).....should be delivered any minute now. Assuming it loses the satellite lock with it's small antenna that sits in the front window attached to the unit, (it'll often be blocked by the vehicle itself) I'd like to install an external antenna on the roof. My initial thoughts were to put it near the back of the Pilot, over the rear door. However, I'm ordering a Honda (or Thule) Roof Box, and I'm guessing that would cover up the antenna, or at least block it worse that it was in the front window. I don't plan on using the Roof Box often, but when I am using it, I'm sure those are the times I'll definitely want GPS Navigation as well. I'm thinking the "cleanest" install (but also most scary), would be to install it on the roof near the front. I'd think you'd have to drill a hole in the top of the roof to run the cable, then seal it up again. Ideally I'd like to not have to drill into my precious Pilot. If you do mount it near the rear door, do you just run the cable underneath the seal? And I guess then I'd have to figure out a way to run the cable inside the vehicle as well. I did find one company that made a GPS repeater antenna. You'd still mount the antenna on the roof, and run the cable inside the car until you found a power supply. Luckily the Pilot has DC power access in the rear. Then you stick the repeater unit to the window (suction cup). As far as the StreetPilot (or any other GPS nav unit sitting on the dash), it just continues to use it's original antenna. Looking for suggestions here. Thanks.

P.S. If if find the internal antenna never loses signal, this is all mute. However, I doubt that will be the case.
 

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WNY...

I've had extensive experience with Garmin portable GPS receivers (including the StreetPilot) and I've found that the included antenna is more than adequate about 99% of the time. When I got my first portable GPS, I also purchased an external antenna and after using it once or twice, I got frustrated with the extra wire (antenna cable) and haven't used it since.

The StreetPilot worked very well in an Explorer, and I believe that the Pilot will allow an excellent view of the sky since the windshield is even bigger. In fact, I have used GPS receivers in numerous other vehicles without any problems at all. The GPS actually needs to "see" only four satellites to give an accurate position.

If you do wish to use an external antenna, they are very small and easy to install (most are magnetic). However, as I discovered, you may also find the extra cable to be problematic.

I suggest that you try the StreetPilot by itself before you decide to buy an external GPS antenna.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So far....so good

Thanks ChiefPilot. I've only used it for about 15 mins of driving so far, and it seemed flawless. So I have no reason to doubt what you're saying about the reception. However, I've been thinking that by using an external antenna, I can drop the unit down lower in my console...into the area just below the power adapter. That would accomplish a few things (1) make it less obvious to thieves that I have a GPS unit for them to steal, (2) create less of an obstruction on my dash, and (3) I wouldn't have to run the power/speaker cable up the front of my dash. Therefore, I still have the same question regarding running an external antenna. Not sure what route I'll go, but I'm looking for options.

P.S. So far, I've been very impressed with the StreetPilot III. If anyone buys one, MAKE SURE you're buying the brand new "Deluxe" model. It now has unlock codes for all of North America (as opposed to just one region). It also now comes with a larger memory stick (128MB instead of 32MB). And it even comes with a beanbag mounting now. I upload a bunch of maps into my unit (Western and Central NY, Ontario Canada, Central and Eastern PA), and it filled up about 80MB of the 128MB stick. And to be honest, I was in a rush, so I know I selected a bunch of maps I won't even be using in the near future. Of course, you can always add/remove maps that you're not currently using. Apparently, the new version of the software (4.0.1) is MUCH more detailed than the previous one.
 
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