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  1. #1
    smittty
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    personal locator beacon

    Does anyone use a locator beacon? Which one is best.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Allen's Avatar
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    Planning on riding in avalanche country?

  3. #3
    smittty
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    no, but I will ride solo alot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by poconogeorge View Post
    Does anyone use a locator beacon? Which one is best.
    With some (U.S.) cell phone companies, you can get a tracking service that plots the location of the phone at whatever interval of minutes you set it to. You'd just need to inform somebody else how to access the location data.

    This feature first appeared with kids phones like the Firefly (which is a kids' phone, but does not seem to mention this feature).

    There are also phone-based devices now mainly for just this "locator" feature.
    I have heard of them being used to help with managing people with dementias like Alzenheimer's--this is one example I found online, but you see that in this case you're paying $250 for a phone that does not even have full phone capabilities. For someone who could not use a full-featured phone this might be a good choice, but otherwise it's paying a lot more for much less.

    Most of the automotive theft tracking devices I've read about seem to use a cellphone-tracker as well.

    Or, did you mean a locator beacon that you can use for you? ....That would be more-accurately called a "portable GPS receiver".
    ~

  5. #5
    smittty
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    It would be for getting lost or hurt. Just a transmitter I guess.

  6. #6
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by poconogeorge View Post
    It would be for getting lost or hurt. Just a transmitter I guess.
    I ride solo a lot and I use a map and a cell phone.

    Where are you planning to ride?

  7. #7
    smittty
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    I ride solo a lot and I use a map and a cell phone.

    Where are you planning to ride?
    Grass Valley, CA
    There are alot of "dead areas" around here so the cell won't really work for me. That's why I was wondering if you guys used a rescue beacon of some sort. I guess I will check out GPS.

  8. #8
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by poconogeorge View Post
    It would be for getting lost or hurt. Just a transmitter I guess.

    You'll need a GPS and or a map to avoid getting lost.

    In order from best:

    Mapping GPS and map.
    Regular GPS and map (with latitude and longitude, not many road maps have this)
    Map

    Of course you need to know how to read a map. A compass can help. Of course you know how to use that too.

    Mapping GPS devices are an incredible tool. I highly recommend if you can afford it.


    A G shock device would be a great idea for a bad fall. Experience a fall with X Gs and it would automatically dial 911. Yet another million dollar idea where I will never make a million.
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

  9. #9
    smittty
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    Quote Originally Posted by spinnaker View Post
    You'll need a GPS and or a map to avoid getting lost.

    In order from best:

    Mapping GPS and map.
    Regular GPS and map (with latitude and longitude, not many road maps have this)
    Map

    Of course you need to know how to read a map. A compass can help. Of course you know how to use that too.

    Mapping GPS devices are an incredible tool. I highly recommend if you can afford it.


    A G shock device would be a great idea for a bad fall. Experience a fall with X Gs and it would automatically dial 911. Yet another million dollar idea where I will never make a million.
    Thanks, I am checking out a G shock now.

  10. #10
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
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    They don't exist as far as I know. It was an idea.

    I know they do have G shock devices that break at a set amount of Gs. They use them in shipping, but it is only to know that the box has been through rough handling. It does not transmit. You know it was set off my opening the box.
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

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    As others have mentioned, some cell phones with A-GPS built in are a reasonable priced way to go if you are riding in placed with cell coverage.

    But if you want a great emergency device that will work anywhere, then consider the SPOT. It has GPS and Satalite data capabilities. http://www.findmespot.com/Home.aspx

  12. #12
    Senior Member deraltekluge's Avatar
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  13. #13
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    I'm not too up on the electronics, but don't they have satellite cell phones (ie, signal broadcast via satellite so there's no dead spots?) If you don't actually use them for yakking to your buddies like normal people, that might be an idea.

    By the way, somebody mentioned avalanches. They do make signal devices for skiers and snowshoers in avalanche country that sends out a signal just so they can find you if you're buried in an avalanche. That would be pretty pointless for any other application, though. I think you depend on the skiers you're with to do the locating- it's not like the FBI zooms in on you or something.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

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    Senior Member SwimBike's Avatar
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    check into the emergency beacons. I know in some states like NH you have to pay all of your expenses for an evacuation. So if a beacon goes off and the heli comes, the search and rescue comes, it is all on your dime.

    I have not heard of any specific stories of this happening but have heard this warning many times.

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  16. #16
    smittty
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    The reason I asked such a seemingly stupid question is I do have recco reflectors in some of my ski clothes and I was wondering if you guys used a similar device. I just moved out to NorCal from the east coast and holy s*#$ is it intense and huge out here. I never was a great rider so I thought I might take some precautions. I am going to contact the rangers and get their input. Thanks for all you ideas, I will check them out further. Thanks again all.

  17. #17
    2-Cyl, 1/2 HP @ 90 RPM slvoid's Avatar
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    You can get a satellite locator beacon but don't plan on using it if you plan to get into a dangerous situation unprepared or if you're using it for something minor cause once you hit the button, you're gonna have like, a group of helicoptors coming after you and in a lot of places nowadays, you're gonna have to fork over the bill unless you can prove that it was an unavoidable situation.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by StephenH View Post
    I'm not too up on the electronics, but don't they have satellite cell phones (ie, signal broadcast via satellite so there's no dead spots?) If you don't actually use them for yakking to your buddies like normal people, that might be an idea.
    The only satellite phone I've seen cost several thousand dollars (just a couple years ago) and using it cost twelve dollars a minute. The person said it was an Iridium phone, but I don't remember what kind--it had a antenna that folded out of the phone's own little briefcase.

    And anyone in mountain country with Sirius or XM radio in their car will tell you that they often can't get a signal while in deep valleys.

    By the way, somebody mentioned avalanches. They do make signal devices for skiers and snowshoers in avalanche country that sends out a signal just so they can find you if you're buried in an avalanche. ...
    Those only transmit a signal that will reach for a few dozen yards at best.

    -------

    How about just pre-planning your route and then informing someone else or two, so they know to act if you don't return on schedule?...
    ~

  19. #19
    Senior Member
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    Instead of a full-fledged PLB maybe a Spot messenger instead?

    http://www.findmespot.com/Home.aspx

  20. #20
    Fax Transport Specialist black_box's Avatar
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    spot looks pretty good with the option to txt message friends with a location on google maps.
    http://www.findmespot.com/ExperiencingSPOT/OnLand.aspx

    The breitling will be obsolete next year?
    The Cospas-Sarsat system has announced the termination of satellite monitoring and reception of the 121.5 MHz and 243.0 MHz frequencies in 2009. The Cospas-Sarsat system will continue to monitor the 406 MHz frequency. What this means for pilots is that after the termination date, those aircraft with only 121.5 MHz or 243.0 MHz ELT's onboard will have to depend upon either a nearby Air Traffic Control facility receiving the alert signal or an overflying aircraft monitoring 121.5 MHz or 243.0 MHz detecting the alert.

    http://www.faa.gov/airports_airtraff...6/aim0602.html

  21. #21
    Sensible shoes. CastIron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lurker1999 View Post
    Instead of a full-fledged PLB maybe a Spot messenger instead?

    http://www.findmespot.com/Home.aspx
    The adventure M/C set are really enamored with these. Their demands are, well, far more demanding in this area.
    Mike
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    It looks silly when you have quotes from other forum members in your signature. Nobody on this forum is that funny.
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    Why am I in your signature.

  22. #22
    Scan Me DallasSoxFan's Avatar
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    I did an MBA class project for this company. It is a watch locator for Alzheimer patients. I think they are around $200 with $20/month fee.

    http://emfinders.com/

  23. #23
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    I don't know the range, but my uncle and cousin use a pair of GPS/Radio units that can keep track of each other when they are out hunting. I believe they are Garmin units.
    Slow Ride Cyclists of NEPA

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  24. #24
    smittty
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    I agree that pre-planning having my family and friends know my route and schedule is a must, along with my maps and compass. I am in my 40s now and tend to be much more cautious in my old age. When I was in my 20s and 30s I've broken my arm in the woods and have been lost in the Adirondacks and Catskills, I have also gone over a gaurd rail at 30-35mph and down a 500 ft revine in the Gunks along with slipping of trail I hit a tree and got a two inch gash in my scalp (which blead like a bit#$) and at this age I don't feel unbreakable anymore. Eventhough I don't have the best skill sets I know me and I will try something above my level and I will most certainly deviate from my plan. I am going to call the park rangers in my region and get some advice as well as checking some of these neat gadgets out. Thanks much.

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug5150 View Post
    The only satellite phone I've seen cost several thousand dollars (just a couple years ago) and using it cost twelve dollars a minute. The person said it was an Iridium phone, but I don't remember what kind--it had a antenna that folded out of the phone's own little briefcase.

    And anyone in mountain country with Sirius or XM radio in their car will tell you that they often can't get a signal while in deep valleys.


    Those only transmit a signal that will reach for a few dozen yards at best.

    -------

    How about just pre-planning your route and then informing someone else or two, so they know to act if you don't return on schedule?...
    ~
    Last edited by poconogeorge; 07-01-08 at 10:31 AM.

  25. #25
    smittty
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    This sounds like the ticket. I've seen it on tv but never checked it out. Thanks
    Quote Originally Posted by Lurker1999 View Post
    Instead of a full-fledged PLB maybe a Spot messenger instead?

    http://www.findmespot.com/Home.aspx

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