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Prof I T
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Oh yes.....long overdue.....
 

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Circuit Owner
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Very interesting.

I was half expecting an Arduino based solution but this looks like a custom standalone device.
 

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Premium Member
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278 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Very interesting.

I was half expecting an Arduino based solution but this looks like a custom standalone device.
I need some kind of "brain" to drive the logic. An Arduino is just a microprocessor soldered on a PCB exposing the GPIO-pins in an easy standard fashion. If I base it on an Arduino, I would then need to solder that PCB on top of my PCB. Huge size just to get the "brains".

It is then much nicer to just put the microprocessor right at the PCB. The footprint will be about a 10th of what an Arduino micro would take.

The Arduino also provide a lot of pins that I have no use for. Even the smallest variant. The current microprocessor I use have exactly the amount of pins that I need.

And last, I have already written the code for my own power base, so it is much easier for me to reduce that code to become only the programmer part.

I'm curious to see how this will be powered.

Heath
It need to be powered with 8-20V. The plug that fits will be a standard 2.1mm DC-plug. Whatever polarity on the plug will work.

(it will probably be possible to power it from the rails of the track).

Dimensions

The board will be 50x33mm in size. There will be a 3mm wide and 20mm long slot for the guide. I hope that will be enough.

No box will be needed. I have added 3mm diameter screw holes in each corner. No moving parts at all. It will be a very small and compact module.

Standoffs like this could be useful,

http://www.mouser.se/ProductDetail/Keystone-Electronics/24295/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMtrde5aJd3qw%252bllydFDFR6gs9iIM2xy%252b68%3d

Here are the current dimensions of the module,

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1CJuMEqum7A1R-tTdOIu2XtuwOMCN3eHznedta3UNBf0

Outer dimensions will not grow, however the holes might move before I am done.

Functionality

The functionality will be very simple. Push a button to circulate between car IDs. Stop at the ID you choose. Put the car in the slot and it will be programmed.

Once programmed I will implement a short test sequence like 50% throttle, break, 50% throttle, stop.

A full use case would then look like this.

1. Push button until the LED at the corresponding car ID is lit

2. Pause for a few seconds, so that there is time to put the car in the slot

3. The car is being programmed

4. Once the car is done and programmed, it will give 50% throttle, break, 50% throttle (from here it will be free wheeling)

5. Programmer ready to be used again

Do I miss any important function besides that?
 

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Prof I T
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What price point are we looking at here ?
 
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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks! I'll add that to the list of features.

I hope to manage with just one button, but I might be forced to add another one.

As this will be a gadget that I will likely not use myself, I might not put so much focus on this project. Unless there seem to be a high demand.

My feeling is that there are very few that wants this, but the ones who do, really see the need. Am I right?
 

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Prof I T
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I suspect the need for this will be greater than the laptimer.

As most people race with a rms package it's going to be much easier to id cars mid race to replace break downs and to set up another grid for the next race while the power base is in use, until now it's needed the expense of another power base.

I will speak to our group and see who would be willing to place an order at the price level your projecting.

The key to shifting more stock is to advertise it,eBay Facebook etc will see plenty of interest I would of thought.
 
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Living the Life!
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Beware of using a digitised car for tyre truing/sanding tyres ......... when the motor is at near stall speed the current draw ramps up, so will the possibility of frying your increasingly expensive chips ........
ohmy.png
 
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I suspect the need for this will be greater than the laptimer.

As most people race with a rms package it's going to be much easier to id cars mid race to replace break downs and to set up another grid for the next race while the power base is in use, until now it's needed the expense of another power base.

I will speak to our group and see who would be willing to place an order at the price level your projecting.

The key to shifting more stock is to advertise it,eBay Facebook etc will see plenty of interest I would of thought

.

As a home racer IMO the lap timer will have far more use and desirability.. The APBase is not so expensive now so any club could own a spare. I almost bought another Platinum set a couple of days ago for £280 and could have finished up with a free APB and XLCs if I was interested in selling stuff on ebay etc. But I already have a spare Platinum set under the bed. This is just my opinion as an average Scalextric home user. Bryan B.
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Prof I T
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This thread has shown more interest from a broader range of members in a shorter period of time than the lap timer.
 

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I currently am using a 4 car power base for programming, which is great. I am interested in this as I would like to expand out to programming all 6 cars, but I rarely run 6, so for me the cost would have to be a bit cheaper. But I am sure there would be many willing to purchase it at your intended price point.

Heath
 

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I'm guessing these devices will be hand soldered one at a time.

Considering the work involved in design, coding, testing and building, I think it is very reasonably priced. :)
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I'm guessing these devices will be hand soldered one at a time.

Considering the work involved in design, coding, testing and building, I think it is very reasonably priced. :)
Spot on. All will be soldered and verified by hand.

I'm interested in getting one, and I feel safe in betting that a couple other members of my digital group would buy one as well. The lap timer, not so much.
I think you are right @MrFlippant.

People hanging here at the forum is mostly more advanced slot-car hobbyists and for them, the simple lap timer simply too simple.

On the other hand all information and code is there for anyone that wants one.
 
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