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USB Track Call Button for HSSRMS

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  • USB Track Call Button for HSSRMS

    I finally got around to finishing up the USB track call button project I have been playing at for a while. I added 5 Big Red Buttons around my track that tie into a single Arduino Leonardo board that is doing keyboard emulation and plugged in to a USB port on the track PC. This interfaces with the changes Bruce did in the software after the App came out that let you use the spacebar to start and stop the race and effectively do a track call. So a press on one of my BRB's is just like pressing the spacebar. Details are in the video - its pretty straightforward - I will put together a parts list and schematic and share the code with anybody that wants to do it -




  • #2
    Nice work, Ed.


    • #3
      Very cool! Please post the details on how to wire the buttons and program the board.


      • #4
        Hello Ed,

        that's great! It looks like I can finally have a foot switch to initiate track calls.

        One question I have: does the space bar still work in parallel to initiate a track call?

        Thank you!



        • #5

          Yes, regular keyboard still works - it's basically the same as plugging an external USB keyboard into a laptop - both still work

          Here's some pics of mounting it in the project box and wiring it up

          the board is powered by the USB so there is no external wall wort required


          will have wiring diagram & parts list up tomorrow

          will also have info on my dropbox folder where the software to flash into the board can be dowloaded.

          Need to look at what I have leftover from the build/design thrash - prob have enough parts & boards to put together a couple of boxes




          • #6
            foot switch option


            here is a foot pedal switch from the same company that does the button switches - looks like same electrical specs and should work fine with the board

            search for this at amazon Momentary-Treadle-Pedal-Switch-Footswitch/dp/B00NPZ2SIO



            • #7
              Great job, Ed can't wait to try it at our next big race.


              • #8

                thanks for the info - foot pedal switch and Arduino are on order!

                Last edited by Rubirosa; 02-07-2016, 06:24 AM.


                • #9
                  Arduino source/retailer

                  Great stuff, Ed. This motivates me to get serious again with the track. I've Googled Arduino, and I'm not clear on which board or where I would order the board from. If you also have a source for the foot switch, that would be greatly appreciated.


                  • #10
                    some more details

                    Attached document shows the parts I used

                    The board is a Leonardo Arduino - I did it with both a clone and a real Arduino Uno won't work with the code I did - it doesn't have the built in USB functionality

                    If you click on my name on this message and click visit homepage there is a dropbox download available for the software I did. You will need to go to the download section and install version 1.6.7 arduino software.

                    I will do some screen shots to walk through programming for those that haven't played with it

                    wiring is straight forward - use any combination of normally open switches wired in parallel that will short pin 5 to ground on the Leonardo board when the button is pressed.

                    you want to use a momentary button, not something that latches

                    I used breadboard jumpers to bring the leads from the board to 2 banana jacks mounted in a project box.
                    I used bellwire to all of the switches and brought them together as one lead on banana plugs that plug into the box

                    Pins 3 and 4 on the "green" side of the uxcell buttons are the normally open contacts

                    Here's a picture showing how I routed the wires to the banana jacks on the one I put in the box

                    Last edited by edmagner; 02-07-2016, 03:40 PM.


                    • #11
                      Much appreciated !!

                      Thanks for following up !!


                      • #12
                        I put some leftover extra pieces together as a package and listed it in the marketplace if anyone wants a turnkey button..



                        • #13
                          Nice work Ed!

                          Opinions apparently differ about using track calls. Here is a great discussion about them here :


                          I think some tracks do have to have track calls because of the way a track is positioned in a room and also because of lack of corner marshalls. Our local club is also looking into something that is mentioned in the track call discussion : When there is a crash or deslot then a button is pushed that makes everyone go to a slow speed until the crash site/car is corrected. They claim this is fair for all since it is like a yellow flag situation in real racing. In any case the more input into this the better!


                          • #14
                            If this works as basically a remote keyboard spacebar button it would work with my trackmate setup. I use a small wireless keyboard as an additional stop button.

                            I see the bits packaged together for sale didn't last long. If I would have seen it before it sold I might have bought it.



                            • #15
                              Added foot pedal option

                              Here is a foot pedal switch option that will work with the USB box

                              Seb - this pedal was a little cheaper from Amazon than the one I pointed you to earlier


                              I've posted the info to build your own but if any wants one turnkey, PM me and we'll see what we can put together




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