Garmin Zumo 660 Cradle – Wiring Loom / Cables Modification

A guide to getting the 660 to better suit your riding needs

Latest Garmins

It’s worth mentioning that the 660 is now ‘old hat’ in the fast-moving world of electronics. You can see the latest Garmin Sat Navs here and also there’s the rather good range of TomTom sat navs which you can see here. They all knock the 660 into a cocked-hat..

On with the 660 modification

The Garmin ZUMO 660 GPS SatNav motorcycle cradle is designed with all of the wiring as an integral part of the cradle i.e. permanently fixed to the cradle. The design of the cable ‘loom’ is imho lacking in what to me would be two obvious features…

  • the option to unplug the unneeded leads!
  • the option to ‘unplug’ the cradle and remove it from your bike

Personally all I want is power to the cradle with phone and audio via Bluetooth and as I only use GPS / SatNav occasionally prefer to be able to remove the Zumo 660 cradle altogether when not in use (I made a quick disconnect power lead for my R1200GS previously, Zumo 550 at that time see here)

 

Garmin Zumo 660 Cradle & Wiring Harness…


…not very conducive to a tidy motorcycle installation, where are you supposed to neatly (and safely) ‘hide’ all that cabling?!

As I’ve already mentioned with the OE Garmin cable set up it’s necessary to uninstall the wiring from the motorcycle if you wish to remove the cradle (so ordinarily if you have two motorcycles you need two cradles!)…..that coupled with the excessive number and length of cable leads meant…

…I had to give it the chop!! :-O

NB: Reversal of this procedure is not really practical 😉
(but if the need arose you can always get a replacement cradle….cheaper on eBay;-)

Modifying A Garmin Zumo Cradle Cable / Wiring Loom

July 2010 – I had my new Zumo 660 but I really wasn’t happy with the cradle’s mass of cables and wires – some time researching on the Interweb provided the DIY solution.

I got all the information I needed from this thread on the ZumoForums, ‘The Insides of the Zumo MC mount‘ and this PDF doc from Touratech (intended as instructions for using their Conversion kit for Garmin motorcycle base mount for ZUMO 660 with separable connecting cable):
Zumo 660 power cable modification (1.16Mb download)
…I basically adapted the Touratech guide to my needs / way of doing things 🙂

First thing to do is position the Zumo cradle on your bike where you want to mount it and work out a route for the cable to a suitable point to make the connection to the power source (both for my R1200GS and my Multistrada 1200 / MTS1200, I made up a ‘fly-lead’ from the bike’s dedicated GPS power connector up to a position under the bikes instrument cluster).


…[arrow] with blanking plug for when not in use. Multistrada 1200 GPS Power Connection

BMW R1200GS custom GPS power lead


…on the GS, at the time of this photo I was using a tyre valve cap to seal the connector when not in use 🙂 GPS Sat Nav Power Connection

Having decided on the point to cut the Zumo 660 cable loom (no going back remember!), give it the chop! Carefully strip back the black outer insulation taking care not to damage the cores in the cable. Only the 2 red and black cores screened with foil are required. These must not be confused with those from the braiding.

 Note how I’ve cut the wires that are not needed to different lengths so that there’s no chance of an unwanted connection being made inadvertently 😉

Closer look…

Insulate the wires that aren’t required with heatshrink insulation tube…

And now solder your electrical connector of choice to the black and red GPS cradle power supply wires and again insulate the connection with heatshrink tube…

Complete the job with further heatshrink tubing…

Job done 😀

I’m a fussy bugger so the silver bolts supplied by Garmin to attach the cradle to the RAM mount irritated me…..too long for the job and why not black bolts for a much tidier look? Solved with a trip to the local ‘Nuts & Bolts’ shop….

 …see how the threaded bolt end is now flush with the top of the nylock nuts 😉

…yeah I know, bit pedantic but I can’t help it! lol

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