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Thread: Satellite Phones

  1. #1
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    Default Satellite Phones

    Anyone have any suggestions for Satellite phones that work well in AK and are fairly lightweight. I am considering renting one, but dont want to find out it doesnt work well; or have to pack around a 6 pound sat. phone either.

  2. #2

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    To be honest, I don't think that sat phone and lightweight are 2 words that can be put together. When we take a sat phone hunting we usually leave it in camp unless we plan on spiking out for a day or 3, then we bring it along but as far as carrying it while hunting, we don't so we don't really care how much it weighs.

  3. #3

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    iridium. Don't rent a globalstar, service in Alaska is spotty at best on them.

  4. #4
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    Default irridium

    I have the globalstar and have yet to have service anywhere even on clear blue days, thinking about calling and asking for a refund since they obviously can't provide the service I paid for!!!!

  5. #5
    Member Montana Native's Avatar
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    Default Why not try this...

    Anyone tried these yet? They seem pretty cool given their features. I don't want to clog the forum, but check it out for yourself, I'm seriously considering a future purchase... http://www.findmespot.com/home.aspx



    SPOT sends your GPS coordinates to a GEOS Emergency Response Center every 5 minutes, allowing you to keep moving if necessary. Emergency responders are then updated with your last known location.
    Because it uses 100% satellite technology, SPOT works virtually anywhere. All it needs is a clear view of the sky.

    http://www.geosalliance.com/sar
    Respect what you do not own but are privleged to enjoy, Mother Earth thanks you...

  6. #6
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    Default I used stids

    When we went up on the Yukon and I liked that phone alot,but I dont remember the brand,but maybe he'll come in here and put his 2 cents in.Daniel

  7. #7
    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    Default

    I use the Motorola 9505a and it works all over Alaska. Some times near mountains it will drop calls but it is worth every penny to me. I buy 500 prepaid minutes a year and if I renew before they expire the minute roll over. Works out to about 60 bucks a month.

    Steve

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    Default

    I rented one from Alaska Satellite Communications over by the Ted Stevens Airport. It was very lightweight, not that much bigger than a cell phone with an antenna on steroids. Can't remember the model but I think it was a Motorola.

  9. #9
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    Default

    I have a Motorolla with service by Irridium that I've used pretty much all over the state. Haven't had much for problems with it. If you're in dense cloud cover it will definately affect reception. And in some areas mountains or tall trees don't help any.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Talcott View Post
    I have a Motorolla with service by Irridium that I've used pretty much all over the state. Haven't had much for problems with it. If you're in dense cloud cover it will definately affect reception. And in some areas mountains or tall trees don't help any.
    I just bought one and wasn't aware of the dense cloud thing, great

  11. #11
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    Default Satilite Phone

    I own a Iridium Satilite Phone . No problems . I've used it on fly ins to the Brooks Range and Alaskan Range . Very happy with it so far .

  12. #12

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    I had an Iridium Motorola 9500. I used it sheep hunting in the Talkeetnas and moose hunting out of Galena. Service was great and never a problem except my battery was old on the moose hunt. Since then I've upgraded to the Iridium Motorola 9505A with 2 batteries. Used it in the British Virgin Islands and occassionally it would drop a call but other than that it's great. I use it all over the Gulf of Mexico without a problem too. I can't imagine that it would work any less than the 9500. If you look on ebay you can sometimes get a good deal.
    "The days a man spends fishing or spends hunting should not be deducted from the time he's on earth. " Theodore Roosevelt

  13. #13

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    Not to hi jack the thread but I will be needing to rent one for a 10 day hunt in Sept. in the Brookes..... I know of Surveyers Exchange,any other recomndations and should I be acting now or are they easey to reserve close to departure dates in Sept.?

  14. #14

    Default Kyocera

    I have ones just like the one on this link: http://cgi.ebay.com/IRIDIUM-SATELLIT...QQcmdZViewItem It uses Iridium satelittes. Coverage is excellent. I have managed to get calls through in a canyon around 6:30 a.m. Alaska Standard TIME. Rarely a dropped call. The batteries have lasted over a year while I let it sit waiting for a SIM card package I was happy with. I use Susitna Energy for my plan. 200 minutes for 200 dollars every 6 months.
    Wherever you go ....there you are.

  15. #15
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by cwoods View Post
    Not to hi jack the thread but I will be needing to rent one for a 10 day hunt in Sept. in the Brookes..... I know of Surveyers Exchange,any other recomndations and should I be acting now or are they easey to reserve close to departure dates in Sept.?
    I put a deposit on 1 in march for sep. 5-10 bear hunt cause they said they go quick around then and you might not get one, If I were you I would get on the phone and make a call to reserve one

  16. #16
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    Default

    Iridium service is very dependable. In the 8 or 9 years I've owned my phone there has been one instance where I couldn't connect a call, and when I tried again about one minute later the call went through. I've used my phone in really awful weather and have found no difference from blue bird weather. Mountain valleys? No problem. Surprisingly I've even had good luck in heavy timber and once I was sitting in a hotel room in Dublin and the phone worked great! I use a Motorola 9505 and have no complaints about size or weight. The battery life is amazing. Way better than a cell phone.

    I also have a SPOT. What a POS! Compared to Iridium phone service the SPOT is absolutely worthless.

  17. #17
    Member Montana Native's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Pid View Post
    I also have a SPOT. What a POS! Compared to Iridium phone service the SPOT is absolutely worthless.
    Really? Can you elaborate as to why... Is it the coverage (or lack there of) useability, or the fact that it is only one way communication? I too usually pack a Motorola Iridium 9500, but just was considering SPOT as a new tool as backup. Answers help with decision making, thanks in advance...
    Respect what you do not own but are privleged to enjoy, Mother Earth thanks you...

  18. #18
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    Default

    Mine has been completely unreliable in south central Alaska. It registers satellite hits occasionally at best when on the tracking mode. On average I'd estimate one in four tracking points are received at best. Seriously. It's that bad. It has transmitted a couple of test "Okay" messages but considering the unreliability of the tracking feature I'm not about to trust it for the 911 feature.

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Talcott View Post
    I have a Motorolla with service by Irridium that I've used pretty much all over the state. Haven't had much for problems with it. If you're in dense cloud cover it will definately affect reception. And in some areas mountains or tall trees don't help any.
    I've owned a Irridium sat phone for 8 years and have used it all over the world. Clould cover has never kept me from making a call on it.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Montana Native View Post
    Really? Can you elaborate as to why... Is it the coverage (or lack there of) useability, or the fact that it is only one way communication? I too usually pack a Motorola Iridium 9500, but just was considering SPOT as a new tool as backup. Answers help with decision making, thanks in advance...

    The core of the problem is that SPOT uses the globalstar satellite constellation. SPOT is a desperate act on globalstar's behalf in order to generate a new revenue stream. They are teetering on the edge of bankruptcy for a reason, their service is terrible.

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