Worker Odometer Setup
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Thread: Worker Odometer Setup

  1. #1
    50 caution yump DatsunZguy's Avatar
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    Question Worker Odometer Setup

    I have used the SS forums search tools, but all my queries tend to yield results for full-blown rally computers...

    I work as many rallies as I can, and am Radio Co-Chief at STPR. Accordingly, I have had a fair number of occasions where I needed to site (flagging/install marker posts) or locate radio positions, varieties of start and finish controls, etc. GPS coordinates are good, but I would also like to know semi-accurate mileages when following route book instructions. I understand some of the more basic aspects of calibration and precision related to wheel spin during acceleration, lost precision if wheels lock up, etc...

    1.) Can folks suggest semi-precise odometer options for workers/volunteers, please?

    2.) What are other volunteers using?

    3.) Any major arguments for/against used equipment?

    4.) Suggested vendors? Have looked at the classifieds here on SS, Dirty Impreza, and Ebay...

    I see a fair number of workers using full rally computers since many are former competitors -- which would be cool except for the $$$ and space required. There is a small chance that I will go this route for the right deal and hoping to do some TSD's.

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by DatsunZguy; 02-03-2013 at 04:25 PM.
    Dave Moore - KB3IEC, STPR Comm. Co-Chief, rally worker, '02 WRX Wagon + '03 Forester, "once upon a time" Datsun Z owner - go RWD!, too poor to race ... Blessings to all!
    "Do not vomit on the finish control workers." (his emphasis) From the section on motion sickness in "North American Performance Rally Codriving" by Dave Shindle.

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  3. #2
    100 oversquare right bentmettle's Avatar
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    Does your GPS have an ODO? My Garmin was pretty much dead on to the tenth, same as the Alfa.

    How close is your stock trip odo? Do you need better than tenths?


    edit: I'd also speak to Mike about the Alfa Club. VSS signal on the WRX is fairly easy to grab. Dropping a rally odo in should be super simple.
    Last edited by bentmettle; 02-03-2013 at 04:39 PM.

  4. #3

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    http://www.rally.cc/#CheckpointStart

    As Matt said, consider the Alfa Club.
    Paul Jaeger
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    For a good time call PRIMO

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  6. #4
    your other left, you idiot
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    You do not need anything other than your stock odo to work an event (unless you are responsible for actually placing the stakes for the controls if there are no other markers out there). I have worked a lot of rallies (even in Canada, converting kilometers to miles) using only my stock odo.

    Now, if you are running TSDs, it might depend on what class you are completing in.

    Also, if you are trying to rationalize buying one.........

    Used is fine, they don't wear out. I wouldn't buy a Terribletrip.

    I have run car 0 using the stock odo (only). I have competed using no odo.

    Absolutely - YMMV.

    press on,
    just a poor, dumb, Michigan(now Wisconsin) navie
    KC8YHT
    jimmy

  7. #5
    50 caution yump DatsunZguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bentmettle View Post
    Does your GPS have an ODO? My Garmin was pretty much dead on to the tenth, same as the Alfa.

    How close is your stock trip odo? Do you need better than tenths?

    edit: I'd also speak to Mike about the Alfa Club. VSS signal on the WRX is fairly easy to grab. Dropping a rally odo in should be super simple.

    Thanks for the reply! I am not sure about the GPS odometer option, I'll check... At Sno-Drift this year, the unit seemed to get lost/confused easily, I was trying to get on 55 in the West Branch area and the unit was a mess. I updated the maps right before Christmas, so the maps should be current. I think that I might like the option of having the GPS WITH the odometer separate, but perhaps I'll try the cheaper GPS odo option first.

    At Sno-Drift, even under careful launches and acceleration, I easily added a tenth or two. My car has 150k on it (no overabundance of torque/HP), and it was not that slippery this year... Additionally, I am not sure about other folk's vehicles, but it takes a good two seconds to get my odometer to zero, so unless I do a full stop I get a fair amount of "fudge factor". I know that snow rallies will be more difficult to get accurate mileage, but having some idea of the intervals in a tenth would be great for rallies with higher frictional coefficients.

    I am pretty sure that I want a unit with separate interval and overall mileage readouts.

    Whom is this "Mike" you refer to?
    Thanks again!

    Dave Moore - KB3IEC, STPR Comm. Co-Chief, rally worker, '02 WRX Wagon + '03 Forester, "once upon a time" Datsun Z owner - go RWD!, too poor to race ... Blessings to all!
    "Do not vomit on the finish control workers." (his emphasis) From the section on motion sickness in "North American Performance Rally Codriving" by Dave Shindle.

  8. #6
    Rallysport.ca Calgary, Albert Shawn's Avatar
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    Terratrip recently came out with the 101+ which would probably do what you want and is small and light weight ... Should cost less than 1/2 the other odo's. I brought one in, but haven't tried it yet.

    http://terratrip.co.uk/terratrip101.html

    Shawn
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  9. #7
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    If you are serious about an auxiliary electronic odometer you might as well get a good time-of-day clock that can operate in either minutes:seconds or decimal minutes as part of the package. The only currently available units that meet this standard are made by Timewise and ALFA (Small Systems Specialists / Mike Friedman). Both produce "B-Boxes" (dual odometer/clock units aimed at "Limited" class TSD rallying as well as stage rallying) and "A-Boxes" (full blown rally computers aimed at "Equipped" class TSD rallying). These units occasionally turn up in the used market (Ebay as well as classified ads here). All can be operated either by a dedicated Hall Effect sensor, or Vehicle Speed Sensor (VSS) signal pirated from the car.

    I know that some have experimented with adapting (relatively cheap) electronic bicycle odometers to car use with mixed results.

    GPS odometers can work in open areas. They often suffer from signal dropout in hilly terrain, especially when there's heavy foliage (i.e. STPR area in June).

    I ran 00 at this year's Sno*Drift with a calibrated odometer (Timewise) in a full time 4wd car (Audi Quattro). Conditions were not terribly slick (at least on the first pass over a particular stretch of road), and we experienced far less odometer drift than you describe.

    Greg Lester

  10. #8
    into right 2 tightens
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    I used to have an alpha installed in my DD, I used various sensors most recently the vehicles electronic single. I installed the wiring into the glove box, velcroed to the door. This allowed me to plug in the unit only when needed, all wiring out of sight and out of the way when not in use. To mount the unit itself, I had velcro on the dash, and this held the unit in place for most situations. I added tape (duck) when I knew the roads would be rougher...

    Not ideal, but made for the least amount of intrusion/ impact to my dd. When I sold the vehicles, a little goo-gone cleaned up all the residue, with no evidence.

    YMMV,
    Mike

  11. #9

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    I've done the bike odometer thing (worked quite well, except the delay when zeroing, which was a real issue if working with increments while moving).

    I had, and have an Alfa Club which was very easy to install into a non-rally vehicle. Tends to have interference issues with ham radios, but I have one of the older plastic cased units, the newer metal cases units may not be so bad. The Alfa was my mainstay for working and organizing events (and still is, actually).

    I run a Terrortrip in the rally car. Mostly it just seems to be ballast, though, as it usually only works when we don't care, and stops when we do.

    Mark Holden - G2 Nissan Sentra SE-R

  12. #10
    50 caution yump DatsunZguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Jaeger View Post
    http://www.rally.cc/#CheckpointStart

    As Matt said, consider the Alfa Club.

    Thanks Paul! I couldn't remember the models or sources that we had discussed at Sno-Drift. I also thought that a dash center mounted unit would be easy for a coworker to read and manipulate, rather than when you would have me call out mileages and reach through the steering wheel to zero the odometer.
    Dave Moore - KB3IEC, STPR Comm. Co-Chief, rally worker, '02 WRX Wagon + '03 Forester, "once upon a time" Datsun Z owner - go RWD!, too poor to race ... Blessings to all!
    "Do not vomit on the finish control workers." (his emphasis) From the section on motion sickness in "North American Performance Rally Codriving" by Dave Shindle.

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