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Discussion Starter #1
Since it looks like I will be doing some solo long distance rides this year I wanted to try to take care of my biggest fear, which is "what if something goes wrong??" and while researching online I saw the Spot device. It is a portable satellite tracking, general notification and emergency notification device that is supposed to be durable and reliable.

I wanted to see if anyone on here has one and if they used it, how dependable is it. Tried the search function but the keywords (spot satellite messenger) are to vague and I couldn't find anything.

Since it is about $12 per month for the service I want to get as much info as possible before buying it to make sure it is worthwhile or if there is something better for emergencies in remote locations, especially since there are a decent number of roads in the southwest where cell service is bad or non at all.
 

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A friend of mine swear by his....it accompanies him on every IBA, Rally, or grocery store ride.
 

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Try posting your questions on advrider.com

I'm interested in this; keep us advised.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Try posting your questions on advrider.com

I'm interested in this; keep us advised.
Thanks for the info, forgot all about that forum, and DAMM there is tons of info and reviews on the spot device and service. Sounds like a great product to have, and I will go ahead and get one.
 

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Yeah, www.advrider.com is a great place to ask this question. With a lot of those rides (hundreds of miles away from civilization) you have to have something to call for help. It isn't the same as being stranded on the side of a highway. A lot of people really like it. Some people are upset that it doesn't get great service some times in wooded areas or around cliffs. Still better than nothing, I would guess. If you are serious about it, a PLB costs more up front (around $600), but works in a lot of places a spot never would, and doesn't have yearly subscriptions. Of course, you don't get the tracking feature and can't check in with friends, but it is a thought.

Anyway, if you want one, here is a link where you can get one free as long as you pay for the first year of service with tracking (something like $150). The promo expires today, so if you are thinking of it, now is a good time.
 

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SPOT worked flawlessly for me on my cross country trip last July. I used it 23 days in a row from NC to OR. Shoot me a PM if you have any questions.
 

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Another thumbs up for SPOT. I've been using one for about a year. All family members and a few friends are on the email list to receive my current location.

It even works in places where you may be out of cell phone contact... as long as there is a clear view to the sky.

jb
 

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The SPOT is awesome!

My dad brought it along on a 4 night road trip we took last spring. We set my wife's email to recieve updates every 10 minutes, and she followed us whenever she wanted throughout our trip.

It worked great, as my wife was 6 mths pregnant at the time, and constantly worried about something bad happening. It gave her the peace of mind to get through me being gone.

Not to mention the real benefit of being able to send an alert from areas without cellular service (aka all the good twistie roads) in an emergency.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Just a quick update on the spot. It works as advertised for the message service. Tested it today, and it don't work unless it has an unobstructed view of the sky, like they say, and I sent an "OK" and then a "help" message to my cellphone and got the messages pretty quickly and the location info was correct. Actually checked online and it said I was 10 feet south of where I was. So accurate within 10 feet. DAMM!!!!

Hopefully won't ever need the 911 feature so overall looks like a good device.
 

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Anyone have an "in" on special deals for the Spot.

Man, I missed that Robbie Gordon deal and I'm PO'd. It sounds silly but I find it hard to pay full pop $149 for something they were just giving away for free. I know AMA has a discount. I think it $20 off the unit and free tracking service for a year ($49). Apparently they do these freebie deals every year at least once.
 

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i do the solo thing a lot, so thanks a lot for the discussion. i will look into getting one for myself.
 

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Anyone have an "in" on special deals for the Spot.

Man, I missed that Robbie Gordon deal and I'm PO'd. It sounds silly but I find it hard to pay full pop $149 for something they were just giving away for free. I know AMA has a discount. I think it $20 off the unit and free tracking service for a year ($49). Apparently they do these freebie deals every year at least once.
listening in on this thread as I recently learned of the SPOT tracker and missed the Gordon deal :(
 

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how often does it send updates? or is that use specified?
 

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I have a spot, and mine is better than nothing, but it wasn't as useful as I was hoping it would be.

There's no indication of just about anything useful. Does it have GPS lock? Can it communicate with a satphone satellite currently? Has the current message been received? Who knows?

So, if you have an accident or breakdown in the middle of nowhere with no cell phone coverage you have no idea if your request for help has gone through. Bummer.

This wouldn't be much of an issue if I trusted it to always work, but it seems to work about 75% of the time. Any obstruction (canyon, nearby buildings, dense forest, etc) seems to interfere.

It's better than nothing, but I wouldn't assume that it's going to work.
 

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how often does it send updates? or is that use specified?
The "Track Progress" feature (which is only available under the most expensive service level) sends out breadcrumbs every 10 minutes.
 
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