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cjepearson

Countdown start timer

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What do clubs use as a countdown timer? We use a locally made one with attached horn, which works fine, but I can't find a commercial one in case ours packs up. I have tried my iphone with a bluetooth speaker....what a fuss. Any suggestions would be welcome.

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i made one from a 99p circuit from china that accepts an SD card with the countdown on mp3 file. hooked up an old speaker and a spare 1s lipo  - fits in a large matchbox

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Lots of solutions if you are an electronics/micro computer  expert. If you are not capable then there are ready made systems.

 

If you want just the timer unit Ken Binks (kbits.co.uk) sells one that does the simple job very well. We have one. I hope they are still available.

Many clubs have access to PA or Disco systems which they might lend to their RC  sailors, at least for major events. These can have cordless microphones, headsets,  etc. and some are waterproof. Problem is many run on 250 volt supply so you need a shed, stage or a very good tent.

Many clubs use  a cheap megaphone with SD card or USB inputs. Simple, portable, and ready to use. They come in all sorts of power outputs at all sorts of prices but for around £50 you should find one with hand held microphone and horn and siren functions - handy for announcements or for guiding the mooring/recue boat crew. Works well but keep rain out of the input slots.

 

I used a cheap car radio with SD card and USB inputs all mounted in a wooden box with speakers. Bit of a bodge but cost next to nothing. Lots of power available but thirsty on 14.4v Lipo batteries.  Don't imagine you could use the remote control unit at the pondside - they have limited range for use inside a car. These radios have far more functions than we need but when you get the hang of using them they will start/restart by removing and replacing the SD card, or by using source button and the fast forward/reverse buttons. Of course as a bonus you have a radio for the workshop when not racing.

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For Blithfield I bought a Haptime waterproof speaker on Ebay for £15. Hanging strap or it has threaded insert to put it on a stick. Works on bluetooth and I can start it with my cheapie phone and with an sd card with a soundfile loaded I got from a discussion on this forum, a very nice australian lady calls us down. Volume is ok for around 10 racers.

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