Garmin 2610 and ground loop isolator - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 3 Old Jan 4th, 2007, 7:33 am Thread Starter
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Garmin 2610 and ground loop isolator

Here is a detailed summary of my install. Your results may vary, depending on your particulars. But I see a lot of questions about the stuff I encountered. Maybe this will help someone.

Installed my 2610 on bike last night. A few things for those who may be installing new GPS.

Before beginning, I rounded up the necessary connectors and mounts and such. I bought the motorcycle mount kit, with cradle and wire harness. It has an inline fuse connector, and a 2.5 mm mono plug to hook into an earpiece or your com system. I also bought a Ground Loop isolator from a local car audio place. It has two RCAs in, two out, and two brown ground wires, that may or may not be necessary according to instructions. I had to buy the necessary adaptors and cords. I think I ended up with about $20 in the GLI and cabling. I bought a 2.5mm mono to 3.5mm mono connector, a 3.5 to two female RCAs (to connect to my particular GLI), and a 2 RCA Male to 3.5 mm stereo cable to go from GLI to com system. In may case an autocom Pro M1.

I also removed the left side tupperware, and rear seat (the com is under there).

First, choose your mount and place to mount. I wanted to put mine on the stingray. In my case, I made an L bracket from aluminum. 2" wide x 4" long with a ~75 degree bend in middle. Used 3M VHB auto trim tape to attach to stingray. Trimmed the tape to fit around the roundel. The stingray top has the slightest curvature front to back to it, so I added a slight bend to follow the curve with a pair of pliers. Still needed a bit more thickness to clear roundel, so I doubled up the tape. Works fine, seems pretty secure. Drilled the back to accept the garmin cradle, attached the cradle and cut the bolts off to a better length with cut off wheel in moto tool.

Before beginning the wiring, I looked up under the stingray to see if there was a passage for cable. And also to see if I could mount the GLI. The bracket that hold the wiring harness and radio antenna looked to be the place for the GLI. I decided to zip tie around the GLI and to the bracket there. There is a space that will allow the passage of the two cables, sound and power to the GPS. So I removed the two srews from the black plastic to allow some movement of the pieces as I passed the cables thru. Also helps if your 6 year old son can use his smaller hands to help. I made all the audio connections from the wiring harness to the GLI ahead of time, but ended up having to unplug it and pass the power thru from the front and the audio from the back. After making sure the cables wounldn't interfere with anything and that it had enough slack to suit me, I replugged the audio and secured the GLI (again, helps to have a small set of hands to reach into the tight spaces). Then plugged those in.

I also plugged in the leads going back to the comm. Found a "suitable" ground for the brown wires also. I used the clip where the bodywork crews into the metal bracket over the gast tank. Turned out the brown wires weren't really necessary in my case, but they are there for the moment. May rearrange that next time I have the bodywork off.

There is a wiring harness clip that the power and sound cables will fit in right behind the radio antenna, so I ran the wires thru there and zip tied them to the rest of the harness asa I ran down the back of the fuel cell. At this point, it was time to decide how to attach to battery. I used the charger pigtail on my bike. I figure I can unplug it and plug the charger in for now. I would like to have done something different, but didn't want to stop and go back out to the store. I used what I had on hand. This an area where you may want to investigate a better or different way. I'm satisfied.

I bundled the power wires up neatly and zip tied the excess to the frame rail. Checked that I had power. Yes. Good.

I then ran the audio cable on back, following existing wires and frame. Plugged it in to teh aux port on the pro M1 and bundled these wires neatly. At this point I was ready to test. The brown wires were hanging loose at the GLI still, and all other audio cables were plugged in. Time for a headset test. [ Note: at this point, it's a lot of testing and such. Hopefully this will help you to get yours working quicker and with less anxiety] I put helmet on and started everything up. DAMMIT!!!! Hum/whine. SO I touched the brown ground wires to the frame to ground. No difference. I tried it without the GLI. Same thing. I put the GLI back in the loop, noticing that different combinations of plugging got me different results. I was also finding that when I touched the buttons or activated a voice prompt, it would "howl" (feedback).

At one point, completely by accident, I discovered that if only ONE side were plugged in, the noise all went away. Hmmmm, that's nice. SO I pressed the voice button for a prompt. I had the volume set as it was delivered, at about 7 or 8. OUCH!!!!! VERY (painfully) LOUD! Turn your volume down ahead of time on the GPS. Seems to make no difference where the volume is on the radio. I did have a CD going at the time also and it mutes the CD when the lady speaks. Turned that down and everything seemed to be working fine. Touched brown wire to chassis to see if that made any difference. None really.

At this point, everything seemed to be working properly, so I buttoned it all back up and took it for a test spin and am happy to report that it worked out.

Total time spent at project, after procuring everything: approx 3.5 - 4 hours working at a diligent pace. I started to do pics, but was fighting the chill in the air. Working in the backyard sucks.

Thanks to all of you for heading me in the right direction. I hope this will help others to figure out their own installs more quickly.

rando is offline  
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post #2 of 3 Old Jan 4th, 2007, 8:25 am
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Location: Hazel Green, AL, USA
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Great write up Randy,

I have only two things to offer in addition.

1. Use the factory brown ground wires for your return to ground (or battery -)as BMW does not rely on chassis ground for the circuits. Especially for noise control.

2. Don't forget the stingray has to come completely off for some service so don't "trap" it with a wiring harness that can't be easily removed.

Enjoy the 2610 - I sure have.

2009 K1300GT Red Rocket
2009 R1200GS (Gone)
2005 K1200LT Ocean Blue Blue Wizard 114 K and counting...
2006 Bushtec Turbo+2 Spell
2004 330 Ci Convertable

Have ridden a Motorcycle in all 48
But lack DE, MA, RI and CT with the 2005 LT

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post #3 of 3 Old Jan 4th, 2007, 10:22 am Thread Starter
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: mount airy (mayberry), NC,
Posts: 1,155

Other than the GLI, Nothing is attached to stingray, I think. Yes the GPS cradle, but that shouldn't be a big deal. Unless the GLI box is, and I don;t think it is attached to the stingray itself, but rather the support that hold the stingray.

I didn't see a good place to splice the brown ground into the brown bike ground. That thought did occur to me.

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