SPOT Satellite personal tracker

Submitted: Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 18:06
ThreadID: 65264 Views:4885 Replies:6 FollowUps:10
This Thread has been Archived
Has anyone taken a SPOT personal tracker on outback travels and if so how did they find it.
Looking for an inexpensive option for emergency backup for 4X4 trip to Alice Springs April/May via Camerons Corner, Innaminka, Birdville and Plenty Hwy. Returning to NSW on main hwys. Will have UHF also.
Back Expand Un-Read 0 Moderator

Reply By: Member - Footloose - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 18:21

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 18:21
Have seen the spot plots a few times. Great to know where people are/were. But it doesn't seem to replace the need for reliable remote area communications.
For example how do you send a spot message that says "delayed for a few days due to mechanical problems", or" bogged in creek, need RACQ:))" ?
But on that kind of trip, your CB should get you out of strife.

There again, people hire sat phones to go to the northern end of Fraser...
AnswerID: 345104

Follow Up By: Member - Kiwi Kia - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 18:43

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 18:43
Hi Footie, I have heard of people sending the same pre-set Spot message a couple of times in quick succession and the person receiving knows that this then means something different to the message itself. (plain as mud :-)) In otherwords a basic "I am ok but delayed" message sent twice within 5 minutes means that I will be delayed two days.

.
0
FollowupID: 613097

Follow Up By: Member - Footloose - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 18:49

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 18:49
A bit like "give us two rings when you get home". Which is fine unless it rings one and a half times :))
In this case of course, as long as one knows the code/sequence I guess that provides a little more functionality.
But I like Dick's solution...be prepared...be REALLY prepared :)))
0
FollowupID: 613099

Follow Up By: Member - Dick (Int) - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 22:05

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 22:05
I am over 70 and I travel alone, sometimes into very remote area's and often walk a long way from the vehicle so I have to be really prepared of it might cost me my life. If you just stick to a well used track you are not so much at risk as another vehicle should come along soon.

Regarding a Satphone, I carry an Iridiam Satphone and it has never failed me yet.


Cheers
Dick







Lifetime Member
My Profile  Send Message

0
FollowupID: 613125

Reply By: Member - Dick (Int) - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 18:27

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 18:27
Rossco

I have two of them and they seem to work ok so far. I use one in the vehicle and the second I carry on me if I leave the vehicle. They have different ID's and that way my son knows if I am in the vehicle or on foot way from the vehicle.

We have tested the emergency messages and they seem to get through quickly. I am not dependant on them in an emergency and I always carry an emergency beacon and a satphone in my backpack at all times.

Cheers
Dick







Lifetime Member
My Profile  Send Message

AnswerID: 345105

Follow Up By: Stephen L - Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 12:09

Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 12:09
Hi Dick,
From my research and speaking to people in the know if you hit the 911 button on your 'Spot' it gets directed to exactly the same people (Emergency Response Department in Canberra) that deal with an EPIRB activation. They will deal with both messages the same way.
Steve..
0
FollowupID: 613181

Follow Up By: Member - Dick (Int) - Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 14:26

Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 14:26
Hi Steve

Yes I believe that is correct. I just do not have the level of confidence in the "Spot" hardware that I have in the EPIRB so I still carry the EPIRB with me at all times.

Just hope I never have to use it.

Cheers
Dick







Lifetime Member
My Profile  Send Message

0
FollowupID: 613194

Reply By: richard - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 19:17

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 19:17
I have one and have not used in an emergency yet but have tested it.

When a message is sent it also sends the longitude and latitude so people will no where you are and if you keep sending OK messages they probably can deduce you are running late.

If you also have the tracking option which I do then a message is sent every 10 minutes to a Website so people can track you progress.

In reality it does not send every 10 minutes but is close to it with a few skips.

I used this and so have a few others on the forum to let people see where you have been - lots of fun.

I leave my Spot with my father who likes to go for daily drives with his dog. He goes in to areas where there is no phone coverage - not hard do to so it is reassuring to know if something happens he can send me a HELP message which I will get via an SMS and an EMAIL at work. On one occassion he decided to test the HELP option but did not tell me. After receiving the message and his location I started off to find him. On the way I got an OK message so knew he was OK.

However in saying this it would be great if the Spot was a lot more flexible with respect to sending and receiving messages. One this I would definitely like see done is for it to be clear a message has been sent. It is not real clear now and some times a message does not get sent -a worry if you were in a bad situation.


Over all a good and fun tool to have in the basket.

Richard
AnswerID: 345114

Follow Up By: Member - Mike DID - Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 09:25

Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 09:25
"I would definitely like see done is for it to be clear a message has been sent. It is not real clear now and some times a message does not get sent -a worry if you were in a bad situation. "

Technically not possible - they are send-only devices that assume the signal has been received.
0
FollowupID: 613162

Follow Up By: richard - Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 21:28

Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 21:28
Mike,
I understand but this is a wish list and could be done with extra technology.


Richard
0
FollowupID: 613261

Follow Up By: Member - Mike DID - Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 21:47

Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 21:47
. . . . though not with the current generation of Globalstar Sats - it's their sick transmitters that are causing the Globalstar Satphone problems.
0
FollowupID: 613263

Reply By: Member - Robert R1 (SA) - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 20:01

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 20:01
Rossco44,

I don't want to steal this thread but this is a question which is puzzling me at the moment. I go on trips to sort of remote areas every year for two to three weeks (I always end up in Innamincka but I try to get there a different way each year). I have taken a Satphone on two occasions and found it next to useless. I have broken down a couple of times but there have always been people travelling past me who stopped to see if I needed help.

In June I am heading off for an extended holiday for three months to the Kimberleys, the Pilbara and as much of outback queensland as I can fit in. To hire a satphone for three months would be very expensive. Ditto buying one or buying a HF radio. I don't intend to go down roads where nobody will be but because I will be travelling on my own this time (my drinking buddy can't get the time off) it does cross my mind that I may need more than a UHF radio. I have been toying with the idea of taking a personal EPIRB but the SPOT Satelite personal tracker could be a better option, and it could get my kids off my back. I am in my late fifties (and I think I am in my prime) but they worry every time I leave home.

Regards,
Bob

AnswerID: 345120

Follow Up By: Member - Graham H (QLD) - Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 11:15

Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 at 11:15
An EPIRB now is about $500 for the new ones which come into use in a few weeks.
However they are for life and death situations only and not for running out of fuel or similar.

Could cost you big time if used incorrectly.

The Spot tracker is cheaper and with a bit of thought into how to send a combination of messages could be used for alerting friends of problems.

Wish they had come into being before I bought an HF and a Satfone.
0
FollowupID: 613176

Reply By: rossco44 - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 21:06

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 21:06
Great to hear from people who have used SPOTs! Some ideas for maximising use handy!
We are only in need of backup (maybe) but its Murphy's law if not prepared something is sure to go wrong!

Has anyone hired one? Guess that's an option also.
However, I have a further trip on my motorbike planned later in year up the old Ghan train route to celebrate 40 years since I first rode up there on a BMW R60/2 to work in Darwin and the NT! Different back then! A SPOT would be small enough to take on a bike and that way family can keep tabs on me!
AnswerID: 345129

Reply By: Bob Y. - Qld - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 21:09

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 21:09
Last year one of the EO members, or past member, gave users of this site, the web page to follow his trip to WA, then up the Canning.

Made for some interesting "viewing", and I'm sure kept many EO people watching his progress regularly.

Bob.
Seen it all, Done it all.
Can't remember most of it.

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

AnswerID: 345130

Follow Up By: Ianw - Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 22:08

Monday, Jan 19, 2009 at 22:08
KiwiAngler is the guy.

A lot of us followed his trip on the website.
If you go back to the forum at the ( Thread 59680 ) or do a search on the name KiwiAngler you will find a lot of info and comments at the time.

Ian
0
FollowupID: 613126

Sponsored Links

Popular Products (13)