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Old 01 February 2010, 07:39   #1
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Boat Trackers - survey/wishlist

All those of you that have recently bought boat security watsits, can you take a minute to tell me what you got:

Roughly how much was it?

What features did you want?

What features did you end up with?

How you would improve it (if the above two are different)?

I know from previous threads that a price point of <100 quid was good, and that there are genuine models and clones with various price/function tradeoffs.

Also that a waterproof housing and panic button were desirable.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 01 February 2010, 07:59   #2
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What do people want a panic button for? Not being cheeky, just curious...

I want this on my console:
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Old 01 February 2010, 08:51   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by malthouse View Post
All those of you that have recently bought boat security watsits, can you take a minute to tell me what you got:

Roughly how much was it?

What features did you want?

What features did you end up with?

How you would improve it (if the above two are different)?

I know from previous threads that a price point of <100 quid was good, and that there are genuine models and clones with various price/function tradeoffs.

Also that a waterproof housing and panic button were desirable.

Thanks in advance.
Go on Martin I will start some replies.

I bought for the new boat a tracker system that operates on telephone networks and gives a GPS location.
It can be put into several modes- i.e not in use so I get a message if it moves and where to
- or it can be set to send message if the boat goes outside the agreed area or moves outside certain times.

With postage it was circa 100 with power unit for wire in to boat- it takes a SIM card so some costs for messages here.

It is small matchbox to hide about the craft

This one is not shown as waterproof so that would be good.

I was looking for a system to monitor boat when out on hire, or if it gets moved outside given times so I know it is either being stolen or used without permission and then GPS positions should help to find it. Preferably there ought to be an anti tamper so if found and pulled out it would give of a signall on reserve batteries.


Panic button not an issue for me- we have DSC on board and the panic button I guess might be anti piracy option.

Hope this helps, I am sure those who bought the system before me and are already using it can expand more as I am yet to put it to a full test
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Old 01 February 2010, 09:39   #4
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Quote:
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tell me what you got:
  • 60 plus 15 postage from Xenun, China (not a clone)
  • Need...The ability to remotely ask the boat...Where are you? Are you on the move? If so, course and speed...all relayed by PAYG SIM and hard wired back to the boat battery. The smalerl and more discrete the better. No external aerials preferred. Reliability and durability vital.
  • That's all I wanted and that's what it delivered, but it will do more...geofence, movement detector, low battery warning...
  • Improve? Not really. More features, more money. It's an entry level, no-frills system. For me, it didn't need to be waterproof, and it isn't. Don't need a panic button. Don't need a bilge alarm or hatch alarm.
  • In 6 months use so far, no false alarms and weekly 'how are you doing?' call always answered.
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Old 01 February 2010, 12:07   #5
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Tracker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leapy View Post
  • 60 plus 15 postage from Xenun, China (not a clone)
  • Need...The ability to remotely ask the boat...Where are you? Are you on the move? If so, course and speed...all relayed by PAYG SIM and hard wired back to the boat battery. The smalerl and more discrete the better. No external aerials preferred. Reliability and durability vital.
  • That's all I wanted and that's what it delivered, but it will do more...geofence, movement detector, low battery warning...
  • Improve? Not really. More features, more money. It's an entry level, no-frills system. For me, it didn't need to be waterproof, and it isn't. Don't need a panic button. Don't need a bilge alarm or hatch alarm.
  • In 6 months use so far, no false alarms and weekly 'how are you doing?' call always answered.
Did you get any tracker on board stickers with this unit.?
Has it lowered your boat insurance..

Did you have to inform you insurance company that it was fitted.
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Old 01 February 2010, 14:08   #6
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Did you get any tracker on board stickers with this unit.?
Has it lowered your boat insurance..
Did you have to inform you insurance company that it was fitted.
No, no and thrice no.

I don't do stickers...

Interesting question about the insurance company...as I think what they charge is good value in my case and they provide a great service I've not mentioned it to them. Until now...

I suspect, however, that it would have to be a 'professional' system (whatever that means) installed by a qualified installer (as in house alarms). Watch this space...
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Old 01 February 2010, 14:12   #7
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Quote:
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I don't do stickers...
stickers aren't likely to put off a serious thief - and simply alert them to the fact there is a tracker to look for and disable / leave on your driveway.
Quote:
Interesting question about the insurance company...as I think what they charge is good value in my case and they provide a great service I've not mentioned it to them. Until now...

I suspect, however, that it would have to be a 'professional' system (whatever that means) installed by a qualified installer (as in house alarms). Watch this space...
I wouldn't tell them... realistically its not going to save you much (maybe a tenner a year if they believe it makes a difference) - but if it turns out not to be working, or you remove it and don't/forget to tell them then they'll try to wriggle out of a claim.
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Old 01 February 2010, 14:18   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Polwart View Post
stickers aren't likely to put off a serious thief - and simply alert them to the fact there is a tracker to look for and disable / leave on your driveway.

I wouldn't tell them... realistically its not going to save you much (maybe a tenner a year if they believe it makes a difference) - but if it turns out not to be working, or you remove it and don't/forget to tell them then they'll try to wriggle out of a claim.
Stickers...spot on.

Insurance company...You're right. It's not worth the effort. My strategy on alarms (house/boat/car) is that if it goes off I want it to call me. I can guarantee that I'll be interested...I can also guarantee that almost no-one else will be interested in a ringing bell
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Old 01 February 2010, 14:51   #9
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I can also guarantee that almost no-one else will be interested in a ringing bell
Oh no, at 3am if you're my next door neighbour I'm interested in your alarm - but not in whether anyone was breaking in - just how quick either you or they can silence it!

Back to Malthouse's subject:

I assume you're thinking of importing / getting these made to meet your requirements.

Personally I doubt you will be able to beat the price of these cheap units with anything custom made - so that means any custom made feature has to add significant value to justify the cost of a "special".

I'm guessing commercially you'll be looking at the market requirements for yachties etc too - which might be different ?

For me as a small boat owner which is normally kept ashore I would see this as

(1) an antitheft device so if someone takes the boat (or maybe engine) I
(i) get an alert it has left the 'approved zone' and
(ii) might be able to find where its been taken.
(iii) need it to run unassisted for at least a month and preferrably 3 months (say 1 message a week) - I normally turn off the master electrics - but I guess that would change
(iv) would want to know if it had been disconnected from the battery or the battery was running low so it would no longer be effective.
(2) a way for someone ashore to check on my location. Main concern here would be coverage as phone reception is dodgy in many places. Is there anyway you get a SIM that uses whichever mast is available rather than just O2/organge/Tmobile/Vodaphone's?

I occasionally have the boat afloat for a few days (on holiday etc), and I'm always restless about it taking on water etc. I've never kept it at anchor overnight for similar reasons. So a bilge level sensor would be be attractive for that. BUT - I wouldn't pay extra for that occassional, nice to have feature.

I don't really see a benefit of a "panic button" compared to a DSC or even a mobile phone itself - unless you can garuntee better mobile coverage in some way (e.g. sat phone)

If I were designing a unit from scratch - I'd consider putting something like a 3.5mm jack on the side to which anyone could connect a circuit that would send a 'general alert' if it went open/closed circuit. That maybe a simple modification of existing panic button ideas? -- that would enable it to be wired to bilge, hatch, panic button etc alarms (any of which could open/short as required).

Even on my wee boat - waterproof is not critcal as it would be well hidden.
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Old 01 February 2010, 15:32   #10
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Quote:
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I assume you're thinking of importing / getting these made to meet your requirements.
Nothing so specific, it is a very interesting area that I keep plugging away at and I am interested in how Yacht Sentinel has been received versus the cheap Oriental option.

Interest in boat security always picks up around this time of year.

It is interesting that views now do not seem to match my recollection of six months ago, I might have to be scientific and actually find the actual thread(s).

Thanks for the all the comments so far, keep em coming.
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