Looking PLB recommendations.

Gizmos and gear used in Helicopter Op's
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Tactical71
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Looking PLB recommendations.

Postby Tactical71 » Tue Jan 1 2019, 08:04

Looking for PlB recommendations. Battery life, ease of operation, other associated features other than distress signal and of course....the dreaded value for money.

Cheers.
Gus.
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Yankee
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Re: Looking PLB recommendations.

Postby Yankee » Tue Jan 1 2019, 12:42

Spot has a good one. They have an upgraded one that allows limited text messages.
I think the annual subscription plan for a Spot is about $250.
The Spot has a feature where it leaves breadcrumbs and your friends can go online and track your progress.

Garmin has one that is basically like a phone that does Satalite texting back and forth to anyone. But I think there’s a charge per text and a similar subscription fee to Spot.
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RePLCPLH
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Re: Looking PLB recommendations.

Postby RePLCPLH » Tue Jan 1 2019, 22:50

Commercial skipper and SAR Mission Coordinator currently completing my CPL. The big PLB sellers in Australia are the GME (https://www.whitworths.com.au/gme-mt410 ... b-with-gps) and the RescueMe made by ACR: (https://www.whitworths.com.au/ocean-sig ... beacon-plb)

Either way, make sure you get one that has GPS as then the accuracy will locate down to within 100m.

I'm a big fan of Garmin product, and their answer to Spot is InReach. It's important to know that neither is exactly a PLB in the textbook sense. A PLB is just like an EPIRB, but instead of being registered to a vessel or a machine, it's registered with the Australian Maritime Safety Authority to you personally. AMSA are the main agency at the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre regardless of whether a SAR activation involves a boat/ship, aircraft, or someone lost on land. When an EPIRB or PLB pings in Australia's area of SAR responsibility, you'll have every available air, land, and sea asset on the case quick smart. A PLB will transmit at 5W for over 24 hours on 406MHz to the COSPAS SARSAT satellite system, and provide a 121.5MHz homing beacon for rescue services.

Spot and Garmin InReach are private subscription-based services so there's a middle-man between you and the JRCC. Spot is used by a lot of people working in remote areas as it leaves a bread-crumb trail of your movements. Handy if you're not able to activate your PLB, but really they achieve two different things.
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bangequalsbad
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Re: Looking PLB recommendations.

Postby bangequalsbad » Wed Jan 2 2019, 08:17

RePLCPLH wrote:Commercial skipper and SAR Mission Coordinator currently completing my CPL. The big PLB sellers in Australia are the GME (https://www.whitworths.com.au/gme-mt410 ... b-with-gps) and the RescueMe made by ACR: (https://www.whitworths.com.au/ocean-sig ... beacon-plb)

Either way, make sure you get one that has GPS as then the accuracy will locate down to within 100m.

I'm a big fan of Garmin product, and their answer to Spot is InReach. It's important to know that neither is exactly a PLB in the textbook sense. A PLB is just like an EPIRB, but instead of being registered to a vessel or a machine, it's registered with the Australian Maritime Safety Authority to you personally. AMSA are the main agency at the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre regardless of whether a SAR activation involves a boat/ship, aircraft, or someone lost on land. When an EPIRB or PLB pings in Australia's area of SAR responsibility, you'll have every available air, land, and sea asset on the case quick smart. A PLB will transmit at 5W for over 24 hours on 406MHz to the COSPAS SARSAT satellite system, and provide a 121.5MHz homing beacon for rescue services.

Spot and Garmin InReach are private subscription-based services so there's a middle-man between you and the JRCC. Spot is used by a lot of people working in remote areas as it leaves a bread-crumb trail of your movements. Handy if you're not able to activate your PLB, but really they achieve two different things.


This is an excellent response to the question.
Top marks.
All I’d add is check the battery expiry date on the one you purchase (if you’re handling the actual product in store you can check the box) to make sure you don’t cop a short lifed one.
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Tactical71
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Re: Looking PLB recommendations.

Postby Tactical71 » Tue Jan 8 2019, 23:58

Thanks all.

I’ve had some experience with EPIRB’s in the maritime area in the past and understand the differenes but never really looked into the PLB’s. Not really interested in paying a subscription to SPOT as Im hopefully never going to need it. All the aircraft Im operating in have Tracplus so its just for personal use if Im offloaded out in the middle of nowhere and something happens.

I like the look of the ACR products but not the price. Just looking for a happy medium.

Thanks again for all the input. :D
Jimmy Riccard
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Re: Looking PLB recommendations.

Postby Jimmy Riccard » Sat Jan 12 2019, 06:38

https://www.ja-gps.com.au/rescueME/plb1/

I really like this one mate. Ticks all the boxes for me and is really small and light for a leg pocket.

The only downside is a 7 year battery life not 10 but hey that's the trade off for something so small.

Cheers

J R

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