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Ninja
2007.04.12, 02:59 AM
I did some research and found some info on these. They are produced by Texas Instruments under the product name "Tag-it". They can be ordered from all over the world by individuals and companies alike. The info can be found here http://focus.ti.com/docs/prod/folders/print/ri-i02-114a-01.html along with ordering info. Just find a distributor in your area and order away :D


These can be purchased as cheap as $0.44 each :p but they are only available in quantities of 5000. SOOOOO, I ordered alot of free samples :D I am gonna test these out in ATL. If they work, they are available in different shapes and sizes. We will just have to wait and see what happens.

rharris
2007.04.12, 03:40 AM
The reader that core uses will in fact read the tag-it tag. However, the Core software expects a encrypted key as part of the binary data that is read from the tag. If the key is not found, then the tag is ignored.

Ninja
2007.04.12, 04:42 AM
So, does that mean that we need an RF tag programmer of some sort?

leonen
2007.04.12, 08:57 AM
So, does that mean that we need an RF tag programmer of some sort?

NO, it means that you can't use Tags that are not from Core Speedway with the software supplied.

They will be read by the antenna, but not by the CORE soft.

So, you have two alternatives: to buy tags from CORE at 1000 % higher price, or develop you own software.

It's is really really really cheap way to implement a lap counter system, but as usual, taxes, licences, etc.... ruin it all.

russp
2007.04.12, 12:23 PM
NO, it means that you can't use Tags that are not from Core Speedway with the software supplied.

They will be read by the antenna, but not by the CORE soft.

So, you have two alternatives: to buy tags from CORE at 1000 % higher price, or develop you own software.

It's is really really really cheap way to implement a lap counter system, but as usual, taxes, licences, etc.... ruin it all.

Yes, it's pretty lame to charge so much for something that is commonly available. There seems to be no real reason for it other than profit motive.

I've begun designing my own lap timing system but it will take me some time to complete it. After looking at the lap-z, giro-z, and other stuff out there it was pretty clear what they were doing (ie: pretty simple designs). I think IR is more accurate than Core based on the number of RFID tags that can be read per second versus the speed of Infrared. Hence, my system is going to be IR and the main challenge is just producing small enough PCBs (ie: a soldering challenge one you have the pcb :-)) I may or may not sell a couple of systems when I'm done but if I do they will only be about $300 each (or maybe even less) with 4 transponders.

Additionally, the software turns out to be actually the easiest part in some ways as long as you are willing to use Visual Studio based on .NET. I'm not a big Microsoft fan but this does make it easy to write your own gui complete with text to speech and graphing. The downside it is requires a machine with .NET installed to run the executable.

arch2b
2007.04.12, 12:33 PM
the mark-up may be there to recoup investment in all fairness. he had the equipment tested and govt. approved, not to mention cusotm enclosures and all that stuff. then there is the time invested in software development, etc. tiem = money in the end.

what should be done is to allow retailer/distributors to be able to code tags vs. core being the sole provider. afterall, any investment will be recouped after a period of time after which, there is no reason to charge $11 for a .50 tag.

russp
2007.04.12, 01:15 PM
the mark-up may be there to recoup investment in all fairness. he had the equipment tested and govt. approved, not to mention cusotm enclosures and all that stuff. then there is the time invested in software development, etc. tiem = money in the end.

what should be done is to allow retailer/distributors to be able to code tags vs. core being the sole provider. afterall, any investment will be recouped after a period of time after which, there is no reason to charge $11 for a .50 tag.

Well, he definitely has the right to do as he wishes. I just agree that the markup is a little excessive on the tags, especially given that it seems some have complained about having a somewhat hard time finding them.

The need to be govt' approved would be another disadvantage of an RF system. I don't know whether RFID though falls under that but no matter... I do agree though that making any system takes more time than you initially expect and if you are going to try and make a business of it costs add up very fast.

arch2b
2007.04.12, 01:18 PM
i agree.

using your designed system as an example, i doubt the $300 even begins to cover the time you've invested in the design and production. for a while i was making custom roof racks, etc and i never was able to recoup any time costs even if i were making a decent/fare hourly rate. it always took longer than anticipated and you always end up putting a little extra effort typ as well.

pinwc4
2007.04.12, 01:48 PM
Russp, you may want to Research FCC certification a little further. As I have went down the same path it was my understanding that essentially any unique finished product that uses electricity may need certification. Even an IR based lap counter is going to generate some level of RF; for example I imagine your circuit will have to have some sort of oscillator to give a clock pulse to a chip. That is generating a RF signal at that frequency.

Most likely you would be able to just do a Declaration of Conformity, but you would want to make sure you do not need to do a Verification or Certification before selling anything. I assume the IR device would fall under part 15 subpart B, unintentional radiators, of CFR Title 47.

I am not well versed in this area so I could be very wrong though but better safe than sorry.....

russp
2007.04.12, 02:01 PM
Russp, you may want to Research FCC certification a little further. As I have went down the same path it was my understanding that essentially any unique finished product that uses electricity may need certification. Even an IR based lap counter is going to generate some level of RF; for example I imagine your circuit will have to have some sort of oscillator to give a clock pulse to a chip. That is generating a RF signal at that frequency.

Most likely you would be able to just do a Declaration of Conformity, but you would want to make sure you do not need to do a Verification or Certification before selling anything. I assume the IR device would fall under part 15 subpart B, unintentional radiators, of CFR Title 47.

I am not well versed in this area so I could be very wrong though but better safe than sorry.....

You are correct. I guess for a minute I was thinking of something else but definitely all devices which can emit, whether it is specifically an RF device or not, require certification.

However, it doesn't really matter for just hobbyist small piece quantities type of thing. In other words, if and when I get my system designed it will be just as easy to build 3-4 of them as one. In that case, selling the others for a few hundred to help recoup material costs and fund other projects would not really require certification. If I decided to make it a full on business than that would most definitely require the certification.

pinwc4
2007.04.12, 02:12 PM
Ninja, just to confirm what others have said. I have already tried exactly what you were going to do. I picked up some tags from Digi-Key and tried them. Plain RFID tags will not work even if they are the exact same model as Core uses.

Also I believe the tags are part number RI-I02-112A-03. The tags you mentioned only have 32 bytes of storage space while the Core tags I think have 256 bytes.

rkk
2007.04.12, 05:01 PM
Would you still need to go through certification if you were just repurposing and existing product? These guys (http://www.rentron.com/) make some IR signaling stuff for Robots that I was looking at with the same thought in mind. The problem I see with RFID is the inability to adjust track width.

pinwc4
2007.04.12, 06:43 PM
Would you still need to go through certification if you were just repurposing and existing product? These guys (http://www.rentron.com/) make some IR signaling stuff for Robots that I was looking at with the same thought in mind. The problem I see with RFID is the inability to adjust track width.

If the device needed to be certified in the first case they most likely yes. I do not think an IR device needs full certification though. I was mostly just wanting to encourage people to verify for themselves if they plan on selling any sort of finished electronic product. Since my lap counter design is RFID based when I sell them they will not be finished so I can avoid needing FCC certification. I have already spent a lot on tools and can't afford the certification at this time and this is a hobby for me not a job.

I definitely saw the benefits of IR but went RFID myself since it does not need line of sight between the transmitter and reciever, does not need to power the tag and the tags are light weight. But like you mention there are problems with RFID like the fixed antenna length. It could be designed with a modular antenna. But if you were to make a finished RFID based lap counter you would have to certify each antenna configuration.

cdog4w
2007.04.13, 03:39 PM
So you're thinking of selling kits?! Yay! I'm just getting into electronics so I don't have the knowhow myself. Could be worse since I do software for a living but theres still plenty to learn. I would be very interested if you did this.

I checked out that newer IC you mentioned, dirt cheap! Like $10 for the IC, tho I have no idea how much the supporting electronics would cost. I'd assume you'd need a custom programmed micro controller to interface with the pc so theres intellectual cost (and possibly material cost if you go with something nicer than a pic).

Keep us all posted!

mleemor60
2008.03.27, 02:31 PM
Can aybody out there connect me with a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 6 Core F-1 sized transponder tags.

Crusty

Ninja
2008.03.27, 11:18 PM
try the core thread or posting a WTB: thread in the apropriate section