Looking for a sealed weatherproof enclosure for your device on a motorcycle? There’s not a lot of choices out there. One excellent choice is to select the waterproof Garmin Zumo GPS series. These are excellent GPS units, but let’s face it, $700 is a lot for a GPS. The functionality of a Zumo is on par with many GPS models from Garmin, TomTom and Magellan in the $100 range.
Why worry about weatherproof? This is important for those that wish to leave the GPS attached to the bike overnight, or ride in the rain. If you don’t do any of this, read a different post on our blog (we have lots of good information).
But what if you don’t feel like spending $700 on the waterproof models? Consider a weatherproof bike mount. These combine a standard mount with a weatherproof case. There are a number of good selections available that feature a standard handlebar mount and a weatherproof case. The word weatherproof is important. If you plan to attach one of these to a submarine, these are not going to work well. These cases are typically zippered shut or snapped closed. Most have an exposed port for wires. If you plan to submerge the case, it will leak. Similarly, if it is a heavy amount of rain, your GPS will get wet. These weatherproof cases are meant to keep your GPS dry in light to moderate rainfall.
Most weatherproof cases feature a clear poly screen that is somewhat active to human touch allowing you to interact with the screen of your iPhone or GPS. Wearing gloves will likely result in an inability to use your device. The iPhone and most GPS units require a human finger, not one covered with a glove. You will find with most of these weatherproof cases that you need to press harder than normal. Makes sense as you need to get through the weatherproof lens. Ideally suited to Motorcycles and ATVs, these keep your portable devices safe, dry, and accessible in most weather conditions. We had a few questions of using these on a SeaDoo, not recommended.
There are multiple sizes available. Some are large and made to fit GPS units to 5 inch diagonal screens. Others are made for iPhones. Consider the size of your device with a case or skin (if you have one) prior to purchase. Each case comes with padding within to ensure that slim units sit flush against the lens. Most have a punch-out to provide access for cables and wires. The mounts that are paired with the cases generally screw onto the case or the case may snap on. be sure the cases are fitting securely before riding. Snap it all the way on and be sure to tighten all the screws and nuts.
A few of our favorite mounts:
The Arkon Smartphone Bike Handlebar Mount with Water Resistant Holder includes a handlebar mount that will fit up to 1.25 diameter bars. It’s coupled with a weatherproof case that’s large enough to fit even the larger Apple iPhone 6+ or the Samsung Galaxy S6. The case measures 5.95 in. x 3.12 in. x .33 in and includes a set of foam inserts to keep your phone flush against the clear lens. There is a port on the bottom for running cables. You can interact with the phone through the case as long as you aren’t wearing gloves.
The RAM Aqua Box Handlebar Mount is a serious motorcycle accessory. The handlebar mount itself is all metal and fits bars to 1.25 inches diameter. The case is large and heavy duty. There’s a port on the back for running cables. You can interact with the clear lens with your bare hands but not with gloves. This is a large mount that works best with larger bikes.
As always, we recommend setting your GPS or phone up in advance. Do not interact with your device while riding.