Locator question

rodneyw71

KLR'er
Premier Member
#1
Does it matter what locator a rider uses during the Ironbutt rally?
I noticed all of the riders use spot, I did the yooper madness ride, was on the group spotwalla link and I think I was the only one using bubbler, I've had no issues with the bubbler app and can't beat the price and customer service you get with it, but should I eventually consider getting a spot and what do I use to mount it to the bike?
 

Ira

Staff member
Premier Member
IBR Finisher
IBR Staff
#2
Does it matter what locator a rider uses during the Ironbutt rally?
I noticed all of the riders use spot, I did the yooper madness ride, was on the group spotwalla link and I think I was the only one using bubbler, I've had no issues with the bubbler app and can't beat the price and customer service you get with it, but should I eventually consider getting a spot and what do I use to mount it to the bike?
As with most rules, it is a performance requirement, as opposed to calling out a specific make and model. The 2015 IBR rules only reference satellite trackers twice (the other noting one might be needed for certain bonuses), the more salient of which reads:

"Points are awarded at each checkpoint to any rider for whom IBR staff was able to monitor the riders progress approximately once every 10 minutes while the motorcycle was moving using a satellite tracking device carried by the rider."

Note, however, the rules change from time to time, so there's no guarantee that will be the rule in 2017.

Ira Agins
Iron Butt Association
 

rodneyw71

KLR'er
Premier Member
#3
Ok, next thing on my list is a locator, I upped my insurance to $300k like the rules say, trying to slowly get my bikes and self ready for the next step, it's work in progress.
 

Jason Jonas

Premier Member
IBR Staff
#4
Today there are two primary personal satellite tracking device vendors. SPOT (http://findmespot.com) and DeLorme (http://delorme.com). SPOT makes a number of devices and, generally, is a lower cost alternative to DeLorme's InReach device. One of the primary differences between the two vendors is they use a different satellite constellation for communication. SPOT devices use the Globalstar constellation which provides one-way communication and excellent coverage for the vast majority of users. The InReach uses the Iridium constellation which provides two-way communication and true pole-to-pole coverage.

All of these easily integrate with SpotWalla and have been used by IBR riders in past events.
 

rodneyw71

KLR'er
Premier Member
#5
I've been using bubbler with no problem, just wondered if having a spot locator was a requirement, I understand bubbler uses my ph service, so that's probably a problem if I'm out in no man's land.
 

Ira

Staff member
Premier Member
IBR Finisher
IBR Staff
#6
I've been using bubbler with no problem, just wondered if having a spot locator was a requirement, I understand bubbler uses my ph service, so that's probably a problem if I'm out in no man's land.
If you reread the rule I quoted above, it says in part ". . .using a satellite tracking device carried by the rider." A phone-based system is not a satellite tracking device.

Ira Agins
Iron Butt Association
 

ssncob

Premier Member
#7
I personally prefer the SPOT system over bubbler - because - the spot uses satellite, bubbler uses cell phone towers. I don't have an unlimited data plan - and while the spot monthly coverage is probably higher than whatever data rate is applicable, I don't feel like mucking around with the cell phone company. And the wife likes being able to track my long distance rides - gives her peace of mind.

But the biggest reason is - last year was on the Cherahala Skyway - there was a biker didn't make a corner, ran into a car. Broken legs and unknown other injuries. No - and I mean ZERO cell phone coverage, even after riding to the top of the hill. Used the SPOT SOS function to get help to the rider. Although my wife did ask I send the "I'm okay" message the spot has before hitting the SOS in the future :) . Another advantage is there are two (actually three) customizable messages on the unit - one can be used to mark rally point locations to make it easier for IBA to track your stops for documentation purposes.
 

rodneyw71

KLR'er
Premier Member
#8
I personally prefer the SPOT system over bubbler - because - the spot uses satellite, bubbler uses cell phone towers. I don't have an unlimited data plan - and while the spot monthly coverage is probably higher than whatever data rate is applicable, I don't feel like mucking around with the cell phone company. And the wife likes being able to track my long distance rides - gives her peace of mind.

But the biggest reason is - last year was on the Cherahala Skyway - there was a biker didn't make a corner, ran into a car. Broken legs and unknown other injuries. No - and I mean ZERO cell phone coverage, even after riding to the top of the hill. Used the SPOT SOS function to get help to the rider. Although my wife did ask I send the "I'm okay" message the spot has before hitting the SOS in the future :) . Another advantage is there are two (actually three) customizable messages on the unit - one can be used to mark rally point locations to make it easier for IBA to track your stops for documentation purposes.
There are messages on bubbler also, site seeing, ok, fuel, food, sleep, it barely uses any data, I use it anytime I'm away from home on the bike, I'll eventually get a spot, but for now bubbler works for me.
 

Becca

Premier Member
#9
For whatever it's worth, I use a combinaton of Delorme InReach and BubblerGPS and love it. The two-way satellite-based messaging of the InReach is a sanity saver. Bubbler I like because it integrates with Fuelly.Com and it allows me to upload pictures to Spotwalla at my stops along with the InReach tracks (I suppress the Bubbler tracking).

Haven't been in a rally yet though. :0)

I laugh in understanding with @ssncob'S wife. My and hubby's standard communication protocol when something has happened is to start with "I'M OK" then move on to the details such as "but a wheel fell off my trike."
 

cacomly

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#10
Ok, next thing on my list is a locator, I upped my insurance to $300k like the rules say, trying to slowly get my bikes and self ready for the next step, it's work in progress.
Rodney, you may want to double check the rules. For 2015 the insurance requirement was $500,000 Combined Single Limit (CSL).
 

rodneyw71

KLR'er
Premier Member
#11
Rodney, you may want to double check the rules. For 2015 the insurance requirement was $500,000 Combined Single Limit (CSL).
Thanks Chris,
I noticed that the IBR requires 500k, the rockin ride and void only require 300k, so that's what I have, if and when I get to the point that I'm ready to sign up and if I'm chosen for the ibr I'll up my insurance, I've been reading some of the posts on the list about getting ready for the IBR and I have a lot of work to do.
 

cacomly

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#12
Thanks Chris,
I noticed that the IBR requires 500k, the rockin ride and void only require 300k, so that's what I have, if and when I get to the point that I'm ready to sign up and if I'm chosen for the ibr I'll up my insurance, I've been reading some of the posts on the list about getting ready for the IBR and I have a lot of work to do.
Got it Rodney, I had my threads mixed up and thought this was the one for the IBR.
 

EricV

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#13
If you reread the rule I quoted above, it says in part ". . .using a satellite tracking device carried by the rider." A phone-based system is not a satellite tracking device.
More importantly for the IBR, is the first part of that rule "Points are awarded ". Screw it up, the staff can't track you every 10 minutes or so, (at their discretion), and you lose points. No one wants to lose points!

If
you get drawn for the IBR and show up at the start to ride, then you will need a Spot or Delorme In Reach or other satellite tracking device, 500CLS insurance and what ever the rules for that year's IBR require. Things like this you can leave for the 9 to 18 months before the IBR when you know you're IN. Please don't be that guy that is trying to fix this stuff the day before the start. (It happens every IBR.)

Until then, use bubbler or what ever else works for you and enjoy the riding. Do some rallies, you will never really understand what it's like until then. Do as many as you can afford to do, including at least one multi-day rally. Even then, Day 9, 10, 11 of the IBR have a greater impact than most realize until afterwards. Especially those riding to win.
 

EricV

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#15
So in all the , new to me. Spot emergency services, does anyone use, recommend the GEOS emergency SAR and medevac offerings from GEOS.
Sometimes it's better to start a new thread than revive an old one with similar, but not quite the same topic.

We,(wife and I), have the GEOS with our Spot plan largely in part because of the potential cost of a medivac flight. We also have MedJet, but that's for after you land in a hospital and need to get yourself and possibly the bike home. Considering the cost, it's cheap insurance against a possibly life altering bill. People have been charged over $20k for helicopter medical flights when it was a for profit service working with a hospital and not the Sheriff dept or hospital owned service. The GEOS services have had good and bad reports over the years. Every situation is unique. Some first responders didn't know what to do with the GPS coordinates given to them due to format issues.

Key to having a satellite tracking device is understanding that it's not a save all device. Don't ride like you're invincible and will be saved if you screw the pooch. Ride like you're on your own and have to self recover and plan accordingly. Then if something happens you have the Spot as a back up when/if you need it. I mostly got a Spot for my wife and Rally Masters to see where I was because it made them feel better and sometimes got you extra points in a rally. And was a required item for the IBR.
 
#16
I have used Bubbler and Garmin InReach Explorer+. Both have worked flawlessly but I prefer the Garmin due to the available SOS function (which will work without a cell signal and potentially save your life in an emergency) and the ease of sending preset messages during gas/rest stops. Best of luck to you!