Satphone/VKS update

Submitted: Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 18:52
ThreadID: 12820 Views:1994 Replies:7 FollowUps:26
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I signed up with Telstra today for my Satphone connection. It is a Motorola 9500 and the Iridium Satellite. Bought the phone second hand from a known? forumite and activated the Sim Card today. $30 per month and you have $10 worth of calls per month included which relates to four 2 minute calls. No up front connection fee to the service. I thought it was reasonable compared to the purported charges that Global Star have in mind.

I dropped my Codan HF radio off in Adelaide to have my VKS Channel fitted. Although the radio is an oldie the technician said that they have always been good quality radios and can still do the job.

That's it......NO MORE TOYS !!!!!........just some repairs to the truck :-(

Cheers
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Reply By: Baz (NSW) - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 19:19

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 19:19
Sounds good Willem,no connection is a bonus, with all the remote traveling you do if you ever have to use and touch wood you NEVER have to, it's money well spent, one day i'll get one !! Have ya called anyone yet to test it out ??

Cheers Willem, Baz.
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Follow Up By: Baz (NSW) - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 19:23

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 19:23
When i said never have to use it, i ment that emergency call.
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Follow Up By: Willem - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 19:36

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 19:36
G'day Baz,

The Telstra bloke tested it. Hope I don't get the bill!!!

Have used my Comms four times in 30 years of bush travel. Twice for important messages and twice to order replacement parts for a broken down truck. So it has served its purpose over the years. Listen in every so often on the radio but not prone to chatting. The phone is really to contact home when I am out of reach and also incase I do something silly(old fellas get that way) and hurt myself accidentally. Could have done with the phone the other night when Uncle got crook on me out in the bush.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Mad Dog (Victoria) - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 19:53

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 19:53
It's a bit of a worry for old folks like us Willem. I was camped out solo in the bush a few weeks ago sitting back looking at the great big sky one night and the thought suddenly flashed through my head that if I collapsed here it may be a few weeks until someone tripped over me. I'm not too sure about this solo business anymore.
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Follow Up By: Baz (NSW) - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 21:33

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 21:33
I think we are youthfully challenged enough to realize that alone out in the bush, all the phones and radio's wont help if your injured so bad you can see the communication device but cant use or get to it to use it, well, i think you get my point.

Barry.
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Follow Up By: Member - Bob - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:27

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:27
Mad dog,
I think they'd smell you before they tripped over you.
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Reply By: ianmc - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 21:56

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 21:56
At 68 years I hate to think that a lot of people who never bother to call me would all have to get dressed up & listen to a sermon as unbelievers near a 6 foot hole
after having travelled a few thousand kilometres to be there. Wonder of they would anyway.
The point of this is that someone closer to me heart than anyone else recently sold his trail bike on the advice of his young son who had stopped using it in case of injury jeopardising his footy career. As it was unreg & uninsur & unlicensed he gave sage like advice for one so young (17).
After a few solo falls on some VERY rocky places the 68yo took his advice.
This will not stop me/him going for steep walks alone when necessary or solo across the Simpson.
If my epirb wont save me it will save on funeral exes & I hope to being leaving northbound rather than south when I do!
You can only do your own best risk assesment & you may well be wrong as you dont know when U may be stricken & U may never be so go for it I say & work out your own limits without being too rash about it.
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Follow Up By: Baz (NSW) - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:15

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:15
OK i'm sorry i give up does, it say kick me when i post, come on tell me, i started riding motorbikes when i was 11 now 49 maybe i should take your advice instead of mine and keep on having fun till i get to your age and beyond, the're a bugger those rocky trails hey !!

Baz.
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Reply By: Ian Bee - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:01

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:01
Willem....... I am a little lost here.......

I am led to believe we have 2 satelite systems, Iridium & something else???

Is the Iridium system still a viable system? I thought I had read somewhere that it had failed to attract enough subscribers to warrant ongoing viability or something, obviously this is not the case, or have they let out more bandwidth to resellers......

Based on the sign up with Telstra, seems you have struck a good deal. Tell me, the $10.00 @ month of calls, can that be one 8 minute call, or multiples theroff?

How much per minute thereafter?

How much would it cost me to ring you?

Is the system data capable......ie email?

I'm all jealous now, going to have to think of a good story to tell Tracy so she'll let me buy one....... "oh look love.......you can ring your Mum any time you want........"

Cheers

Ian BEE

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Follow Up By: John - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:16

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:16
Is the Iridium system still a viable system? I thought I had read somewhere that it had failed to attract enough subscribers to warrant ongoing viability or something, obviously this is not the case, or have they let out more bandwidth to resellers......

Ian are you on the same planet.
Iridium is the biggest sat system in the world. Just ask the US Defence Department who use the system exstensivly for military use due to it's reliability and Digital security.
And it is avaliable at very good prices.
Have a look at Telstra.com and go to the country wide area and have a read.
It is capable of date transfer.

The system did change hands a few years ago I have posted the story of this some months ago do an archive search and have a read.

Also Willem only has one Sat phone, he aint that rich and his ship still has not come in. (He bought it from me)
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Follow Up By: Ian Bee - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:23

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:23
Trust me to get it all wrong!!

I do however remember reading, not that long ago, and I believe it was in a 4 x 4 mag, that one of the systems was .......... let's say......... not well written up.

Please do not think I am slagging off at anyone. Hey, I've only got an old Erricson which I've had for about 4 years!!! A sat phone is on my long term wish list.

I am geniunely confused about the duallity of the satelite system. Now wether it equates to sat phones, or GPS, I don't know......... but I am sure I read something.

Cheers

Ian BEE
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Follow Up By: John - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:28

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:28
Hi Ian
Sorry I wasn't being nasty. Just sarcastic.
Have a read of Telstra's site and it should give you a link to Iridiums also.

No problem at all with the system very very good and very reliable with about 99 % coverage of the world.
And pretty cheap in my opinion considering the ease of use.

Sat phone's and GPS use different satellites.
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Follow Up By: Mad Dog (Victoria) - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:48

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:48
The original owners of the Iridium sats sold them off for next to nothing after failing to attract enough revenue to keep them afloat and threatned to crash all the sats if a buyer wasn't forthcoming. They were sold for a pittance compared to the billions it took to put them up, The owners lost a large fortune but were glad to see the rear of them.
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Follow Up By: John - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 23:09

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 23:09
Ray the new owners, who include and Australian are making a fortune from them now.
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Follow Up By: Mad Dog (Victoria) - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 00:21

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 00:21
Glad to hear that John. I would have hate to see an asset like that brought down. It just took good management eh!
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Follow Up By: Willem - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 10:16

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 10:16
Ian

The other system is Global Star which at one stage had someaconnection to Vodaphone(or still has). I was interested in their new Satphone/CDMA and applied for a government subsidy, which I got.
The unit however is copsting $1900 less subsidy of about $1000. Then there is a $200plus connection fee and $35pm access fee plus call charges.

I was able to buy the Motorola 9500 in VGC for nearly half the price of its original cost and having all my other phone business with Telstra it made snese to go that way. $30pm is a bit steep for a pensioner but I will just have to manage. I had to go on a 24 month contract.

I made an error describing the phone calls. The $10 free calls per month will be 4 One minute calls. It is 50c flagfall and $1.98 per minute.
All calls are calculated at the same rate unless you are ringing an overseas number.

Cheers
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Reply By: John - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:08

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:08
Hiya Willem
Good to see you got the high tech thingy sorted out.

The guy would have rang Telstra Sat Service the call is free, you can call them yourself also No is 125 135 its free call from your sat phone at anytime even in an emergency without your sim card you can also call 000 works the same.

What happened to the GSM sim with international roam ?

HF is a good jigger of a thing to have also but the sat phone is very convenient, as you say it is nice to call home and let the better half know where you are and that everything is good with you. (It keeps them happy)
My mum is a bit of a worrier so I call her to let her know we are OK.

My kids get a big kick out of ringing their nana from far of distance places, Like Hi nana we are at Haddons corner, just good fun.

Take care

Kind Regards
John
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Follow Up By: Willem - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 10:06

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 10:06
G'day John

"What happened to the GSM sim with international roam ?"

Yes that is still available but you still have to be a registered Satphone user i.e. be on a connection contract. The GSM sim also only works where you have GSM towers. In other words you will not be able to access GSM if you are out in the middle of the Simpson where there is no GSM signal. So there is no point to it. My Satphone is for emergencies and calling home from anywhere. If I am in a GSM area I go to a payphone and use 1800 REVERSE(7383773). My other mobile phone is a CDMA which my missus uses when travelling around.

HF doubles up as a back up to help closer at hand. Anyway these things are just a safeguard. I may go to isolated places but I do not take unneccessary risks especially when solo.

Regards
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Reply By: Member Eric - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:11

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:11
Hmmmm a sat phone , another add to the wish list I think . Thanks Willam
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Follow Up By: John - Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:20

Wednesday, May 12, 2004 at 22:20
Hi Eric
I emailed the details to you a while ago, but young Willem beat you to it.

By the way did you bash those blokes who pinched your gear yet ?
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Follow Up By: Member Eric - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 08:06

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 08:06
Dam , not like me to mis out on something like that , you must have caught me on a slow month lol . As to the 2 A holes , no I wouldnt do that , it's against the law , I actually tried to help them up yesterday they must have tripped over
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Follow Up By: Willem - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 10:18

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 10:18
Geeeeez Eric.........You mean to say I have something you haven't got...hahahahahaha....you are lagging behind, mate :-)
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Reply By: Nudenut - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 07:38

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 07:38
You'll have to take a phone book, 1 of each State? so you'll know what phone number to ring to tell person where you and that orange truck need to be collected from....if and when it ever breaks down
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Follow Up By: Willem - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 10:22

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 10:22
Hey Nudie

Why don't you put some clothes on and warm your brain up?

It is simple. Yoo look at which areas you are travelling in and program the Police or Emergency Services numbers for that area in to your phone memory. You can just dial 000 of course. Even without a sim card.

Orange trucks are mostly fixable by owners. One Hundred Landcruisers need a tow truck....hahahahaha
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Follow Up By: Member- Peter & Mrs Peter, Lez - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:30

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:30
Hi Ya Willem,
I dont think 000 works on your sat phone. According to page 49 of the 9500 users handbook you need to dial 112 in an emergency. Havent tried it personally though.
Cheers Peter and Lez
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Follow Up By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:40

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:40
Hey Nuddy, got an email today & someone has stolen your pick for nefarious uses.
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Follow Up By: Nudenut - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:59

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:59
Bob, why would anybody want to do that...must be mad! and its Nudenut not nuddy (as in mud)
and willem ,
read what peter says ...might be wise to take the phone book ...
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Follow Up By: Willem - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 18:17

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 18:17
112.........000.........999.........911............333 or whatever...who cares

Bunch of nit pickers!!!!!

Your book story is getting sawn off, Nudenut. Get out of your armchair and go travelling...........
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Follow Up By: John - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 18:45

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 18:45
Hi Peter
The Telstra Mobile users guide says the following.

"Quote" Emergency Services
Dialling "000" will connect you to an emergency service operator in Australia.
The 000 operator will have some indication of the callers location, but only within several hundred kilometers.
Calls dialled to 112 (a GSM standard emergency number) will be connected as for 000.
A sim card does not need to be present in the handset for either emergency numbers to be routed to Australia. "End Quote"

This I understand is unique to the Telstra/Iridium system not avaliable on Globestar.

Peter you need to read the additional user guide for the Telstra Sat phone as the Motorola Manual describes things that are not avaliable in Aus.

hope your keeping well.
Catch you soon.

Regards
John
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Follow Up By: Nudenut - Friday, May 14, 2004 at 14:04

Friday, May 14, 2004 at 14:04
Hey Willem,
will be going on one of my community working bees in early August for NPWS and realised that your sat phone would be very handy to borrow; so i could keep incontact with my employees while away.
Wont be going thru Peterborough, but Gladstone isnt too far out of my way.... so I could meet there to collect phone.

Dont worry about bringing a phone book.....i'll take one from my office

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Reply By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:41

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 17:41
All you need now Willem is that new truck u been looking for to go with the new phone.
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Follow Up By: Willem - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 18:01

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 18:01
Bob, Maybe there ia a new 2nd hand 3.0lt TD coming on the market soon?????? :-) Will u take a trade?
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Follow Up By: Member -Bob & Lex (Sydney) - Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 18:12

Thursday, May 13, 2004 at 18:12
I'll see how it goes first & let you know
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