Frequently Asked Questions



Spider Questions

What are the main differences between the spidertracks tracking units?

The Spider S6 has Spidertxt- 2-way texting capabilities, Radius- the abilty to suspend position reports within a custom set radius, Altitude Events- alerts you when the custom set rate of climb or descent thresholds are exceeded, Bluetooth GPS- shares GPS data with your mobile devices allowing navigation apps to work without cell coverage, and more Onboard Storage of flight data.

Do the Spiders come with an external antenna?

No. The Spiders have both the GPS and Iridium antenna inside the enclosure. To work the unit will require a good view of the sky. We recommend placing the unit on the dash of the aircraft.

Do the units require an STC or other certification?

No. The units are considered carry-on or role equipment therefore do not require an STC to be placed inside the aircraft. The Spiders have been tested by Eurocopter for interference with the FADEC engine and Cessna have given a letter of no technical objection for installation into their aircraft. Please see a download of the installation documentation.

Can I easily shift my Spider between multiple aircraft?

Yes. You can purchase more brackets and power leads and then easily shift the unit between multiple aircraft.

Does the Spider have an internal battery?

No. The Spiders run completely from an external power source. They are designed to 'live and die' with the aircraft power however external batteries can be used if necessary. We recommend not to use an external battery if possible to increase the integrity of the system.

Can the LED on the Keypad be dimmed for night flying?

Yes. By holding down the Mark button on the Keypad, the LED will cycle through levels of brightness. Release the Mark button for the desired level. Contact spidertracks if you require NVG compliant modifications done on the Spider LED.

How long is the warranty on the Spider S3 and S6?

The warranty is one year from date of purchase and it is on a back to base terms. This means you will be required to send the unit back to either Spider Tracks Limited in New Zealand or the USA at your own expense. Please retain your proof of purchase when applying for a warranty repair or replacement.

Is the unit vibration resistant?

Yes. For normal aviation or land use the Spider is shock resistant.

Does it work on the cell phone network?

No. Spidertracks only uses the Iridium Network to send data as this is the only guaranteed method of transferring data from the unit to the servers in real time. Cell phone networks will have black spots where there is no coverage.

What is the coverage area of the Iridium Satellite Network?

Iridium has complete global coverage. The 66 orbiting satellites are not geostationary, like some other satellite networks, and therefore there will never be any black spots. Iridium is currently upgrading all existing satellites with Iridium Next. Read more...

What happens, when flying with Spiderwatch active, if I forget to turn off Watch at the end of the flight? Will my support people be alerted?

Yes. The spidertracks' servers will treat a loss of power the same as a crash. If within 15 minutes from power down, the pilot can turn the Spider on and press the Watch button manually, then press it off, and wait until the LED stops flashing to prevent an SOS message from being sent. We recommend the pilot be a tier one contact so they can easily cancel any SOS alerts.

Who has access to my tracks and how long do they stay there?

You control who can view your tracks via the website. As the administrator (Fleetpro) or owner (Aviator) you can invite people to view specific flights, aircraft or all the aircraft in your account. Unless you are, via AFF or Global Viewer, supplying the tracking information to government organisations, the CAA or other administrative bodies will not be able to view you flights. If required by law spidertracks will provide tracking information. The tracks are stored on the spidertracks' servers until you delete them.

Can I add an overlay (KML) onto the map?

Yes. KML overlay can be added to the map, allowing you to display features that are not normally displayed on Google Maps. For example, an out at sea oil rig can be displayed in order to show where helicopters are landing. Please see Adding KML on our support site for more information.

What is AFF?

AFF is Automated Flight Following. There are a set of standards that tracking companies must adhere to in order to be AFF certified. Once AFF certified, tracking companies can supply the tracking information (at customer request) to specific organisations such as the US Forest Service. Spidertracks is AFF certified.

Can spidertracks send data to the US Forest Service or other government organisations?

Yes. Spidertracks is certified to send data through an AFF feed. Via the Fleetpro website you can set your Spider to send the information to US Forest Service, NAFC (Australia) and many other organisations. To change this please go to the Spider Settings page and check the AFF box.

Which phones have a spidertracks application?

iPhone and Android.

What smartphones can I use with Spidertxt?

2-way SMS messages will be available later in 2015 for iOS and Android devices through Bluetooth.