Cheap Tracker

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Ady, Sep 7, 2020.

  1. My TK103 has been in since around 2015 and sits happily connected permanently to 12v. The internal battery seems to last a few days though it rarely needs to run on its own.


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  2. I pay £60 a year for a tracker, not really cheap one but I think it’s worth it.
     
    Lasty likes this.
  3. Trying running it on battery, when I get the low battery text, I will try charging it elsewhere.

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  4. Yup, it looks nice on top of the stack of tyreless wheels, at the moment:thumbsup:.
     
  5. Interesting.. but if the battery lasts up to 1 year, why is it rechargeable 500 times for instance.
    Outside towns it probably vanishes except as a Bluetooth proximity device.. otherwise it is based on networks that are likely only to be found in some towns .. its a low power short-range device which gives it good battery life.
    A Bluetooth only tag may be as effective and cheaper.
     
    snotty likes this.
  6. Im about to stash my van for a month while I overhaul the garage and been thinking about a tracker, any firm recommendations on here? A friend sent me the link below which looks pretty good, although interested in the TK103 people are discussing?

    Subscriptions a bugger but at $15 for 3 months using at in short intervals could be a goer...?

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Vehicle-Ca...1605633269&sprefix=car tracker,aps,171&sr=8-1
     
  7. Get it without subscription and use the SMS option.. not sure the TK103 would last 3 months though...

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    BeulahThe78Bay likes this.
  8. Well, I bought a cheap RF tag immobiliser. Which was pants as it sometimes decided to ignore the transmissions from the little key fob and I would see my fuel-solenoid relay LED go off while driving along the motorway. Which necessitated a quick operation of the secret button to get it to go into "valet mode" and just turn on the relay.

    So I bought one of these relay style units. Fitted up with a Giffgaff PAYG SIM.

    It did not work, but if I put the SIM in a knackered Samsung phone, switched that to 2G, the phone could make calls using the SIM from beside the tracker.
    Once or twice, it hooked up to the GSM network, about once every few days. ..

    So I decided to unsolder the tiny antenna from the unit and just wire in a 900MHz dipole ( two 83mm long bits of insulated wire) .. success. It registers with the nearby base station (about 2km away seems to be nearest 2G mast ) ...

    Conclusion - its a nice little unit but its too small and the GSM antenna built in is too small as a result.

    The GPS unit it uses is a very sensitive GPS/Glonass unit which has no trouble getting a signal sitting inside the bus.

    The free track logging China hosted website offered by default seems to work OK , you can point it any other suitable tracker website if you want - it seems to have a fair number of options for setup.
    You can make an app on your phone go off if the unit picks up vibration for instance.

    More later.
     
    BeulahThe78Bay likes this.
  9. And this evening, got my head round loading a copy of the open source Traccar https://www.traccar.org onto my Linux file server, and telling the tracker to talk to it rather than China. (the inbound protocol code is "h02" for the "relay" style , TCP port 5013, each protocol has its own inbound port)
    It uses OpenStreetMap to put up maps of the vehicle's position and track.
    Havent yet tested alarms etc.

    Main blockers were telling the PlusNet DSL router to route the IP traffic to the server, and HTTP screwing up an SQL table that locked the database because something else was misconfigured, and stopping the Traccar from wanting to be user 'root'.

    So now I have my very own vehicle tracker website, and it only costs me ... so far this year : £120 replacement disk drives for 2 out of the 7 fitted, £20 lightly fried fanless video card, £75 UPS three battery replacements, mains electricity at about 150 watts 24/7.
     
  10. something for the average amateur bus electrician then... haha

    Great work, not quite cost viable yet though...?
     
  11. [​IMG]
    Cheap tracker?
     
  12. I would say its about as hard as re-threading the thermostat operating rod without taking the engine out.

    Mostly though it was going through a set of clear instructions on the website. Except the guy who runs it knows it so well he doesnt understand or respect the difficulties of some users who have trouble setting it all up. His stock answer was - its on the forum ! But the forum search is hopeless...

    Not really an average-bus-owner job, but there do seem to be a few people who could do it on here.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2020

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