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Old 07-06-2014, 12:25   #1
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Iridium Axcesspoint for GRIB and email

I wanted a simple way to download grib via Iridium without ongoing subscription costs. I had planned to first try Iridiums Direct Internet, but found it lacking, in fact I couldn't connect at all. Probably because of all the programs on my computer trying to access the connection. I tried turning off updates, apple, printers etc etc, but it was pointless. I think the only option is a firewall. I purchased an Iridium Axcesspoint wifi router and after a bit of mucking around setting it up it seems to work very well. It costs around $180 but is a one off fee so no subscription. It has email and browser software (downloaded) and a username@myiridium.net email account (which is only accessible via iridium, i.e. you cant log into the email account via standard internet.
I also downloaded weather4D for ipad which seems to be a very good grib program. One of the best features is that is shows the Iridium satellite orbits in real time so you can time your connection for the best data speeds.
I haven't yet done a direct grib download into weather4D but it seems simple enough. There is a direct button to ask for a grib using Axcesspoint.
I have downloaded some gribs to the axcesspoint email account, and a 30Kb file took about 3 1/2 minutes to download from saildocs.
I like to use zygrib as well and the file sizes are similar, you can also request zygrib gribs via email and the format is a bit more intuitive, better layout than the saildocs request method. The easiest method is using the zygrib program, simply tick boxes for required data and drag a square around the area. I think weather 4d is similar so I will try that out as well.
50Kb allows for 3-4 days of wind, waves, pressure at 6 hr intervals for an area the size of the attached picture which is around 1500M x 1500M
so each image is about 5kb.
I also noticed weather4d will open the zygrib format gribs as well as the saildocs formats. It was mentioned that Zygrib may have better compression, but I tested both formats and there isnt much difference, saildocs may be slightly smaller files for the same data.
I wasted about 30 minutes of airtime stuffing around before getting the axccespoint. My reccomendation is get it straight away. Its also perfect for using cross platforms as its a simple wifi network, so Macs, Ipads, windows can all connect easily.
I have a couple of things id like to sort out if anyone has the answers
- how to easily send files between PC and ipad over wifi so I can download and share the grib file between hardware
- how to set the axcesspoin firewall to allow zygrib axcess so I can download directly to the program instead of sending/recieving emails


BTW, the satellites move fast! from the beginning of a good signal to the end is only about 5 minutes, and I would guestimate 10 minutes in between average, so its definitely worthwhile to have a program to view the satellite orbits in realtime. I downloaded a couple for the PC but they were very clunky compared to the weather4D one.
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Old 07-06-2014, 13:12   #2
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Re: Iridium Axcesspoint for GRIB and email

Hi.

I have go make a similar decision soon.
Most probably I will use sailamaik.com.

Regards,
Matthias
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Old 12-06-2014, 05:25   #3
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Re: Iridium Axcesspoint for GRIB and email

One more question. Does anyone know of an email weather service that emails simple text for an area. I'm thinking of utilising the iridium free email receiving service for twice daily updates straight to the phone. I'd like something you can email coordinates or zones to and it send email back. I know zygrib and sail mail do it with gribs. Also maybe an text will do it and sent weather warnings as we'll ?
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Old 08-09-2014, 21:50   #4
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Re: Iridium Axcesspoint for GRIB and email

Used the Axcess Point and Weather 4D two years ago crossing the Atlantic. Was easy to set up and reliable. Got a new GRIB every two days. Best thing, you place the Phone and Axcess Point outside with a good view of the sky and keep the iPad insde where it is safe.

+1 on the real-time satelite info.
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Old 09-09-2014, 01:12   #5
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Re: Iridium Axcesspoint for GRIB and email

I like your setup. I have been looking at the Iridium Go but the problem is getting into the ditch bag...

For file transfers between PC and iStuff check out iFiles. They just have to be on the same subnet and you map the iPad on the PC with an I/P address or bonjour handle.

If you dedicate the devices I/P addresses you only ever have to set it up once.

Drag on drop functionality back and forth from the iPad. We've deployed iPads in the field over the last 2 years and I put a team on evaluating all the baseline apps we needed.

IFiles came out to be the "best" WiFi file transfer solution at the time.
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Old 01-01-2015, 12:14   #6
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Re: Iridium Axcesspoint for GRIB and email

Is any one using the iridium go to download from sailgrib onto an android device, as we are having some problems and need a few pointers
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Old 01-01-2015, 14:08   #7
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Re: Iridium Axcesspoint for GRIB and email

Quote:
Originally Posted by monte View Post
One more question. Does anyone know of an email weather service that emails simple text for an area.
Saildocs can email you all kinds of text documents, webpages, weather, gribs, etc. You learn about the service by sending email queries. Kind of fun to play with.
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