Daily Giz Wiz 614: AutoTether

Episode 614 of the podcast

Subject: Review of AutoTether
Released:Thursday 17 July 2008
Length:about 17 minutes
Download file:dgw0614.mp3 (7.7 MB)

Listen to the episode

Short info

Increase your boating safety with the Autotether wireless engine kill switch.

Detailed information

An important device for boating is the emergency stop lanyard, which is connected to the engine kill switch and worn by the boat operator, so that if the operator falls overboard, the engine will stop.  However, it does restrict movements and can cause false emergency stops when the connection gets pulled off accidentally.

The AutoTether solves this problem by doing it wirelessly.  The main unit, which has a wireless signal receiver, is connected to the engine kill switch.  A mobile remote unit worn by the operator (or any passenger) sends radio signals to the main unit.  If the operator or passenger falls overboard, the radio signal transmission is cut off, since radio signals cannot travel through water.  The main unit detects the signal cut-off, stops the engine and sounds an alarm at the same time.  The system operates by AAA batteries, with low-battery warning indicators.

The AutoTether kit comes with one main unit and 2 mobile remote units.  It can accommodate a total of 4 remote units (extras can be bought separately).  Other applications include using it at a beach or around a pool, if you don't want a young child to go into the water unsupervised.  You can also set a range for the remote unit so that when the remote unit goes out of range, the main unit will sound an alarm.

Dick has written a fuller article on this gadget in PowerBoat Magazine.  Here's the link.

Did you know?

... that Dick was involved in the production of a Playboy Club musical Little Annie Fanny, and Leo did a TV commercial for Clarks Shoes.

Party Line

The PhoneMate Just In Case Beeper (Episode 540) brings back memories for Paul Pigozzo from London, Ontario, not only of his grandmother's rotary phone with 30 feet of cord, but also her "party line" - one telephone shared by several households, and the telephone gives off different rings for different households.

Naturally, whenever a rotary phone is mentioned, Leo inexorably talks about Steve Wozniak's Rotary Cellphone again.

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