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vtjballeng

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vtjballeng last won the day on July 23

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  1. Glad to hear @Money Shift Racing & @MichaelPal safely walked away from this incident! Going to PITT was a first for some of us. The last time I went it was still called Beaver Run. What an upgrade! This track and the facilities are massively improved. PITT was a significant deadline for Flagtronics. We've been working day & night trying to build out as much of the feature set and future proofing the code to the maximum extent possible. We concurrently brought a lot of new trackside hardware and capabilities. In general, the event went very well and most of our new features proved themselves in the field. One of the new features was the ability to declare multiple local flags such as a local yellow + debris. Unfortunately, there was a bug in our trackside hardware that prevented some cars local flag station status clearing timely. This effected a small number of cars and we'll have this fixed before our next event. We apologize for the confusion this caused a small number of teams. We wanted to address this issue to offer transparency. Overall the team feedback was very positive and the system worked perfectly for most cars. ChampCar was once again very happy with the system and we continue to work together to cover more events leading up to official release in 2022. A few notes notes. The FT200 has 6 brightness settings that can be selected by pressing the button up or down: 1 - low with light compensation 2 - medium with light compensation 3 - high with light compensation 4 - low without light compensation 5 - medium with light compensation 6 - high with light compensation We have a video about this and CAN Bus capability here: We also offer complete customization with our software, our product manual here, and the ability for track & firmware updates here: https://flagtronics.com/pages/downloads We debuted light panels at the VIR24 event but did not bring them to PITT. ChampCar is tentatively planning on using panels in 2022 which allows for ideal synchronization between flag stand and in car unit with one control system. Regarding a physical flag system with a trigger, this is something we investigated with several tracks & orgs. We've also looked at an AI camera method at the stand. The reality is that the tracks use a lot of different flag types from different manufacturers and there's little standardization. The corner workers do not issue the flag you see when they pick it up. They pick it up and hold it in preparation with a variety of different movement paths depending on the person & flag station construction. So removal from the box is one step in the recognition process. The flag itself needs a low power board with motion sensor to detect both the removal of the flag from its holder as well as motion to a sustained horizontal state or a waving state. The conversations always led back to the same solution. 1 handheld controller in the booth that controls the status both for the cars as well as panels on the stand. This is the fastest & most consistent way to deliver the same data around the track quickly to all locations.
  2. Yes! I expect we will have a full writeup for RC by October and presets for the system earlier than that. Yes, we have units for teams racing at VIR24 who wish to purchase now. One caveat; You will need to perform a future firmware update for races after VIR24. We "closed" ordering a few months ago but there is still a breadcrumb trail others are finding to get through the website and order. We want to restrict orders to VIR24 teams currently and will open it up further soon and should have it up for direct sales at the track. We'll be available at registration with units. It's also very helpful for race analysis afterwards, real-time analysis, and for race strategy. The CAN output will be user programmable to allow use on a variety of dash and logger systems. We will have native support with RC
  3. Yes, that is something that can be done as a feature addition. We'll add it to the feature request list. There are some other CAN messages we'll make available over time too that customers will likely find useful. I should note that some Dash, logging, & telemetry systems will have very specific formatting and/or will not accept an external GPS CAN reference as a source for lap times, etc. So this is a request that makes a lot of sense until you try to implement only to find that your system can't or won't actually use it in the way you hoped. You can PM me and/or you can email sales@flagtronics.com to determine what system you are using and work on the implementation specifics.
  4. Some information on the FT200 & System Overview A few notes from ChampCar races. Mount the FT200 horizontally and in driver line of sight. The screen has a letter for the flag condition. Y for yellow, G for green, R for Red. These are to help color blind drivers. The text is inverted to keep most of the screen the color of the flag. If possible, mount the FT200 in a place that will allow the light sensor on the rear of the unit to compensate for ambient brightness. The FT200 will darken at night and get bright in the daylight automatically. There are programmable brightness curves you can set to change this however you want. The buttons on the FT200 can also be programmed to ignore the light sensor and offer different brightness levels manually with a button press. The FT200 can communicate via CAN bus to Dash systems, loggers, & telemetry systems to send the current flag state. FT200 ideal mounting locations GPS mounting locations
  5. They are field serviceable. Two zip ties and a simple to use & common connector.
  6. An update on this point, we had completed the change but didn't have an event with Code35 since the change. This should be at VIR24: The current firmware will flash between 35 & SLO in purple at 1hz above 47mph. Below 43mph it will display a solid 35 again. We were curious and let several units run on 30 minute cell phone timers today. Both had less than 1 second variation over the 30 minute period.
  7. Good points @Team Infiniti. CMP is difficult because the pits are so crowded relative to the pit exit and it isn't very wide. We'll work to resolve this for future events so you won't trip the pit exit when staking up at pit out. Yes. We've talked about this for both pit speed & for VSC/Code35 conditions. Assuming CCES still wants to do this, this will be a future feature rollout.
  8. Thanks everyone for the detailed feedback that helps us refine and improve! Thanks @Aleric Sanders for staying on top of the questions. The information gets to the units from control very quickly (<1s) so the timing variations are between stands and race control / human variation. The inverted text allows us to use more pixels and make the message brighter. Once you "see it" you get the messages thereafter. Note, the pit lane timer function will be the series reference in 2022 so you will want to reference that for your pit lane time. We are rolling out the other features gradually. It's a good day if you don't see the black flag message . There is a purple low battery message that says VLT. We'll update this to say LOW VLT, scroll, and generally be more noticeable. We alternate side to side for waving local yellow. Y for full course. LY will be the future standing local yellow. All messages have a 10 second ~2Hz flashing to indicate a flag state change. The text is for color blind people which is a surprisingly high 8% of men in the US and less in women. Text also helps distinguish certain flag states. FCY was based on user feedback in the past and it hasn't been popular so we're listening to feedback and updating the display method! Brightness has 3 settings selectable with the top/bottom button short press. In the past, we had a lot of feedback about the unit being too bright. We made the brightness curve very aggressive so that it can get VERY dim without light hitting the sensor and VERY bright with a lot of light hitting the sensor. This is to make sure it isn't too bright in night races but will still be clearly visible in direct sunlight. The light sensor is at the back of the unit and we've seen users block this sensor with installations that are tucked in. This means the sensor will see no light, think it is night time, and remain dim. For example, this installation will be very dim in full daylight conditions because of the installation. The reception will also be reduced because the antenna at the top of the unit isn't able to send a signal out of the windows: The simplest solution is to mount the unit in a place where the back is exposed, the unit is angled towards the driver, the antenna is above the dash, and it is in clear line of sight for the driver We plan to give users complete control over these light curves which will be light sensor vs screen brightness tables for each of the 3 settings. So, a user could for example install the FT200 in a place where the light sensor is completely shrouded and select a full bright daytime curve as setting 1, an overcast curve as setting 2, and a dim night curve as setting 3 that completely ignore the light sensor. @macheesy brought up the option of installing the unit upside down as they had a clean install location using this method, so we will plan to support this in the future as well. We will work to update the ChampCar mounting and installation information in the rules to this effect, provide better documentation to this effect, and we plan to make some videos showing how this works. The included harness battery allows the FT200 to act as a pit timer during pit stops and is planned for the production hardware. Thanks again everyone for the detailed feedback! We are listening to you and working on every detail.
  9. Yes. You can create different colors, shapes, and text if you wanted albeit 8-bit 80s gaming style. Text: SHIFT NOW the some explosion art
  10. Y'all ready for the FT3200 in car unit? It's so large and bright, this is the only thing you will see while driving. For the very serious among you who wonder if this is a joke, this is a joke. This is a 320mmx320mm corner flag station panel and is not for in car use.
  11. We'll be at Daytona testing. We have a shroud available for most, based on popular demand.
  12. We have a sealed battery pack with solar charging in the works that is capable of powering a panel for 24hr+ races for precisely this scenario. Nelson Ledges is not alone in this. Sunlight not required at the event, only between events to recharge (for clarity).
  13. @Chris Huggins, thanks for the very detailed outsider's breakdown! I'm sure this has and will help many understand the system in use and many of the goals. Currently, the local stand is the reference if there is a disagreement. Our long term vision is to offer a complete solution with only one system of record. This system would have cars equipped with flagging units & sign boards at every corner station. Race control would have a full track control system and every corner station would be equipped with a corner controller. Our system is capable of this now and was designed for this use case. Full scale implementation of with all equipment and pieces will take time. With respect to ChampCar in isolation, the 2022 mandate means that this issue is moot in series. Outside of Champcar, this is absolutely true. Fortunately, the unit cost is very low and there is no subscription fee in addition to offering a wide variety of other features and capabilities.
  14. While the system and all hardware is capable of showing locals, we only plan full course flag conditions in the near term.
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