PLB battery replacement
Does anyone have any recent experience with getting a PLB battery replaced, or investigating it? Where did you go and was it worth it? A few years back I recall not seeing it available anywhere outside Auckland, and so expensive that it wasn't financially with it compared with buying a new PLB, which seems sad because I hate wasting otherwise perfectly good stuff. This thread from 2016 seems to agree about the non cost effectiveness, but maybe something's changed? https://tramper.nz/forums/thread/9261 Specifically it's an ACR Resqlink+. The original only had a seven year expiry so if a replacement is the same then it also mightn't be as cost effective as buying a new one with a 10+ year life.
As Scottie already mentioned, a potential but real downside of an In Reach is that you may have drained the battery significantly or even completely before setting it off, meaning a vastly reduced transmission time. And then the weight starts to pile on again if you want insurance in the form of a battery pack. And then you'll be tempted to take your phone as well, if it's not already in your pack as an indespensable... Garmin have only just taken over its main competitor to get hold of the In Reach tech, and the recent stuff from them smacks of a rush to get something out into the market to offest the acquisition cost and get some revenue. I think I'm going to sit back a bit and let them refine the product (including interface, size and weight) over the coming year or two, as I'm sure they will.
my inreach has been completely reliable, i've used it for tracking extensively. i dont think the battery pack is that heavy... i got an inreach mini which is pretty light to start with.
That does not reflect my inreach experience in bush. We use inreach tracking at work set to 1 point every 15 mins. Yes - every point gets sent in the end. But when I look at the device there are often 3 or 4 points queued to be sent - meaning that the past 3 or 4 attempts to transmit (45 mins to 1hr of travel) have been unsuccessful. So don't assume that because all track points get sent in the end they are actually sent successfully first go at the spot where they are generated. From non emergency mesaging use I know that sending in thick bush will probably work in the end but may take an hour or two (device retries every 20 mins) - whereas sitting the device upright in a clearing has a 75% chance of getting a message out immediately and very rarely takes more than 2 attempts (20 mins). I imagine an sos does not wait the prescribed 20 mins between retry attempts. But have found nothing in the documentation to say, one way or the other.
how old are your devices? mines one of the latest devices...
What happens to an emergency call on Inreach? Last I heard is it ends up in USA who have to contact our SAR system.
@wayno. The work ones I refer to for tracking are a mix of garmin explorer and garmin SE. Some bought 3 yrs ago when work started getting them, but some bought this year. Not noticed any performance difference between the recent garmin models wrt satellite connectivity. That said, they certainly are better at connecting than my old delorme inreach 1.3 model which is now over 10 yrs old. Not used the mini - work don't get them and the poor battery life puts me off it for personal use so I'm sticking to to my delorme 1.3, until it dies, for non work use. Then I guess I'll get an SE or equivalent and start lugging round power packs & cables to recharge it (instead of the couple of spare AA's I currently carry).
@madpom I don't use the tracking, but a delay in messages going out is my experience also. Hence I consider my inReach as a backup/supplementary to my PLB
inrech use iridium non geostationary satgellites. depending on where in the sky is open you may have to wait for connection to a satellite for it to pass overhead https://www.gsat.us/tools/iridium-satellite-location-map-tool https://www.gsattrack.com/home/iridiumnextsatellites
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