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Old 02-02-2008, 11:03 AM   #1
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Hi,

I, like most of us I suppose, need to be contactable and, for the most part, find that a mobile phone is the best solution. Unfortunately for mobile phones we either live or spend much of our time in an environment which, at best, can be described as hostile towards electronics. I therefore need a mobile phone which should be watertight / dust-tight. Why? not because it is going to get wet but because the atmosphere on board is salt laden and any deposits of salt will attract moisture. Not good for electrickery!

As my current cellphone was inherited from my ex. (really means she saw a new one she liked better and thus donated hers to me) something like 5 years ago I am in the market for a new one - providing it is, in my opinion, better that the one I now have.

So, amongst fellow CL members I am sure there is a vast amount of knowledge also on this subject, hence my question. Any recommendations?

My basic requirement are that the machine can be used to make phone calls. If an alarm clock is incorporated so much the better. I don't need cameras, MP3 players, Internet capability, Bluetooth, cocktail blenders, ice crushers, coffee makers, nose hair removers, tyre tread depth gauges or any other so called finesse. I believe a telephone should be , well, a telephone. So, any suggestions as to make and model?

I appreciate any advice.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 02-03-2008, 05:38 PM   #2
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Hi! You can simply use one of the little waterproof pouches made for cel phones, ipods, pda, etc. Then you can use any cheap phone for your purpose.

We've got a palm TREO 700P ( not a cheap-y) that we use. On the boat, we keep it in the little waterproof pouch (see ones on this site, for example, waterproof ). We do use it in the pouch, sometimes the person on the other end can tell that there's some "muffling" sometimes not. We also have a bluetooth headset so we can simply use the headset outside of the pouch while the phone stays in the pouch. Of course, charging requires that one remove from pouch or at least open up the pouch enough to plug in the charger.

Many people change their cel plan every 2 years (max), getting new phones with the new plan, and probably any cel phone made will hold up to a salt air environment during that time frame. If you want to keep any electronics dry onboard, you can invest in a drying cabinet system for electronics that may include desiccant and heater at a minimum OR a vapor corrosion inhibitor. You can keep all portable electronics in such a cabinet or case.
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Old 02-03-2008, 06:45 PM   #3
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The problem with the waterproof pouches is that they allow the salt laden air in when opened to recharge the cell. Also, as I spend much time working in the marine environment, I would really like to have a robust, watertight, dust-tight phone. Sony Ericson were developing one, the SO902WP, but it never quite seemed to reach the market.

I know most people buy a new cell every other year or so but I don't go for the buy and throw away concept. As long as the thin is working why throw it away? No logic in that I would say. It also is part of our global problem in gobbling up the world's resources and creating piles of garbage.

I am not so sure a drying cabinet system would fit in Nausikaa, let alone have the power available for it. Otherwise the idea is a good one.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 02-03-2008, 06:59 PM   #4
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Motorola IC502...meets Mil Spec 810F for rain, dust and shock. I've performed 810F testing and it is rough. If it actually passes 810F, it will be just fine for all your needs.
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Old 02-03-2008, 07:51 PM   #5
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Brilliant! Thanks for the heads up. Much obliged.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 02-04-2008, 09:24 AM   #6
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Use something like these emitters in a ziplock that you keep the cel phone in while you're not using it:

http://www.rustbloc.com/cgi-bin/dept?dpt=H&srch=AW
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Old 02-05-2008, 04:44 PM   #7
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Since I haven't seen it addressed anywhere I'll add this little tidbit. One of the best things you can do for you electronics in regards to water resistance/proofing is to open up it's casing and coat the circuit boards in white lithium grease. You can pick up a pint jar for $2-$3 and it'll last ya a year. Simply apply a generous coating and button back up the device and clean. Doubtful you'll experience any water related problems. I generally top up greasing my electronics every year and practically never experience premature electronics failure. Moisture will bead up on the grease, not the circuits!
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Old 02-06-2008, 07:02 AM   #8
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Nokia make a couple of different models of tradesman's phone.

One review is here:

http://www.cnet.com.au/mobilephones/phones...40001525,00.htm

I also remember seeing a black one that had an inbuilt level gauge and a rubberised waterproof case. Not sure of the model number.
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Old 05-14-2008, 11:05 PM   #9
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You could always get the cheap free phone that comes with the account when you sign up and maintain the insurance on it. If it gets wet or breaks, you get a new phone. Then after 2 years when your contract is up..get the new free phone
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Old 07-16-2008, 11:51 PM   #10
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If you are going to be traveling outside the USA you should consider getting a GSM Quad-band phone. They are available on-line at reasonable prices - but be sure it is "unlocked".

There are 4 different frequencies in use around the world for cell phones. GSM is the technology world wide except for some old systems inside the USA.

Each island country used different bands for the various providers of service. Sometimes the same provider is on several islands but the prices vary dramatically from island to island. So having a phone that can work on all the different bands means you can choose the best priced provider for that particular island and install their SIM card into your "unlocked" phone.

The cost differential between "roaming" (keeping a provider from outside the area) and getting a new local SIM card and number is enormous. It is generally very cost effective to get a new local SIM card than use roaming.

With quad-band phones you have the ultimate flexibility to do whatever you think is best.
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Old 07-17-2008, 06:32 PM   #11
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I concur with the recommendation of the GSM quad-band phone.

I also think the folding flip-phones are more robust than the fixed phones. Thinner is better so it fits nicely in pockets.

I'm real happy with my Motorola V-series phone. I have a belt holder but when working around the boat I keep the phone in my pocket to reduce impacts. My phone is almost four years old and doing fine.
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