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#11590 - 12/28/02 06:40 PM Satellite Phone and GPS
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hello, everybody,
It seems to me that the most important thing in any emergency or survival situation is to inform people where you are and ask for their help. Therefore I think that Satellite Phones and GPS should be the first items in the list of anybody who travels abroad or countryside. I am travelling usually 2- 3 times a year abroad- Central Asia, South America, Eastern Europe- sometimes for a few days and sometimes for a few months. I am thinking to buy a Satellite Phone and GPS. Can anybody suggest what would be the best Satellite Phone and GPS to buy for travelling abroad? There is quite a large selection of them and I do not know which ones are going to be the best choice for me. I need phone solely for communication (might be also pager-send and receive functions- if it is much cheaper) and intend to use it only in emergency, preferably with long battery life or that I could charge it using chargers for mobiles, reliable connection, water and shock proof. I need communication for any continent, except Antarctica. About GPS- I need it water resistant and shock proof.
Regards,

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#11591 - 12/28/02 07:23 PM Re: Satellite Phone and GPS
Anonymous
Unregistered


Don't mean to be a boring "kill joy" on the excitemnt of getting this new kit-and sounding like an old man

BUT

this kit is nice BUT CANNOIT be relied on in an emergency!!!!! It will most likely fail when you need it most!!!!!

Get to know the traditional basics-morse code-semaphore-map reading with compass- AND learn all these skills till you can do any of the tasks whilst seriously injured and in the pitch black darkness-THEN POSSIBLY consider modern technology!!!

Sorry if it seems agressive!!!

Mark

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#11592 - 12/28/02 08:07 PM Re: Satellite Phone and GPS
M_a_x Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/16/02
Posts: 1047
Loc: Germany
When you intend to use it only for the position, a cheap 12 channel receiver (most of my colleagues use the Garmin Etrex) will be enough. If bulk is an issue you might consider the Casio GPS watch.
Preparation includes letting someone know where you plan to go and when you should be there. Relying only on the electronic gadgets means taking changes and you might loose.
_________________________
If it isnīt broken, it doesnīt have enough features yet.

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#11593 - 12/28/02 08:09 PM Re: Satellite Phone and GPS
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
I have no buying experience with either unit. I would suggest your charging units come with voltage adapters for the different world systems and a secure storage/carrying system. Mark is right. While these tools are invaluable resources; nothing is certain in an emergency. Medical,police,fire agencies can become quickly overwhelmed. By all means acquire these two items. But also assemble a basic kit for your person .

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#11594 - 12/28/02 08:28 PM Re: Satellite Phone and GPS
M_a_x Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/16/02
Posts: 1047
Loc: Germany
>> Get to know the traditional basics-morse code-semaphore-map reading with compass- AND learn all these skills till you can do any of the tasks whilst seriously injured and in the pitch black darkness-THEN POSSIBLY consider modern technology!!!<<

I donīt fully agree to this. When itīs only for getting the position for SAR, you can benefit from having a GPS without being proficient with traditional methods. If the electronic device fails, you are in the same situation as if you didnīt have it. When it works, you are in a much better situation. And it takes next to no time to learn the basic operation. So IMO it doesnīt hurt to have modern technology as long as you are aware of the fact that you canīt always rely on them. It would be advisable to learn the traditional skills though. That would significantly enhance the odds if the modern devices fail.
_________________________
If it isnīt broken, it doesnīt have enough features yet.

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#11595 - 12/28/02 08:41 PM Re: Satellite Phone and GPS
Anonymous
Unregistered


i totally agree wiuth what you are saying!!!

BUT

>>>It seems to me that the most important thing in any emergency or survival situation is to inform people where you are and ask for their help. Therefore I think that Satellite Phones and GPS should be the first items in the list of anybody who travels abroad or countryside<<<

He says this in his first post-the first 2/3 lines are important he is saying that he would use these devices in an emergency situation and they would be most important to him (should be the first items in the list of anybody who travels abroad or countryside) this implys that he would value the technology over the basics-and as many of us are aware-and many people have said on here that when you are in a survival situation and need something to work-particularly technology-be it cars, radio's etc. it often fails in one way or another SO we must consider them working in harmony perhaps would be my conclusion to both mine and max's post! do people agree or disagree or have other opinions!!

Mark

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#11596 - 12/28/02 11:09 PM Re: Satellite Phone and GPS
Anonymous
Unregistered


Thanks to everybody for reply. I would like to ask you a bit more questions. I have seen different types of GPS on INTERNET. Some of them allow to have maps. I was wondering if any GPS can contain the map of whole world in 1:250 000 or 1: 1000 000 scale, not only specific regions and countries , or GPS do not have enough memory to contain it all?
And about Satellite Phones: would you know which phones would be water and shock proof and not bulky (without special case) and which satellite phone companies cover Eurasia, America, Africa and Australia?
Regards,

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#11597 - 12/29/02 01:56 AM Re: Satellite Phone and GPS
Anonymous
Unregistered


I have used various types of GPS units for over ten years, and they certainly can be very helpful. They are in no sense a substitute for a decent paper map of the area in which you may be navigating. I have not seen a consumer grade GPS with anything like the detail I would like to see for backcountry hiking, or even four wheeling on dirt roads. Even with a GPS, you will still need traditional map reading/route finding skills.

What does work nicely are topo maps on CD-ROMs that interact with your GPS. This adds a laptop to your kit, but if you are dragging around a satellite phone, what the hell? I prefer to print out a paper copy of the area I am going into, and download critical waypoints into my GPS beforehand.

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#11598 - 12/29/02 10:50 AM Re: Satellite Phone and GPS
M_a_x Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/16/02
Posts: 1047
Loc: Germany
Generally the portable GPS units donīt have enough memory for a map of the whole world with a satisfying detail level (and you canīt your own either). I agree with Don. IMO using a GPS with paper maps and compass is preferable to GPS units with maps. The paper maps offer more detail and they donīt depend on battery power. When you use a PDA , Iīd recommend a map program for that. I have a Palm and a Psion and both work decently with my GPS. I never go without a paper map when Iīm not familiar with the area. My preference would definitly be maps, compass, GPS in that order.
_________________________
If it isnīt broken, it doesnīt have enough features yet.

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