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Are chip timing systems becoming affordable yet?

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Are chip timing systems becoming affordable yet?

Old 04-01-08, 08:23 PM
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woof
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Are chip timing systems becoming affordable yet?

Last time we checked it was something like $25-50k for a system. Our club would definately be interested once it approached $5000 for timing up to 150 racers. (Usually 75). Do any clubs have their own? And those who have used them, were they reliable?
By the way, this is for an XC club. I should've posted in Mnt Bike Racing, but road racers are smarter.
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Old 04-01-08, 09:20 PM
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In Fl, all races are done by chips, each transponder costs around 100 bucks. Check out AMB for the actual system,
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Old 04-01-08, 09:32 PM
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$100 is nuts. ChampionChips are $35 here in Austin. I guess in Fla. you're probably using a more advanced system that adds no actual value other than to the manufacturer

You might contact RunFar to find out what system they're using for timing. They do nearly all the events in Central Texas.
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Old 04-01-08, 09:37 PM
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I was talking to a coach who was thinking of setting up a system and he was talking about $25K for the set up. I told him I thought every yahoo with a $3000+ bike on a charity ride would pay $10 to have their time officially taken (by which I meant I would). He'd make his money back in a MS150 ride or two.
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Old 04-01-08, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by SpongeDad View Post
I was talking to a coach who was thinking of setting up a system and he was talking about $25K for the set up. I told him I thought every yahoo with a $3000+ bike on a charity ride would pay $10 to have their time officially taken (by which I meant I would). He'd make his money back in a MS150 ride or two.
The problem is you'd have to front load that with 16,000 chips that probably cost $15, then deal with the 4,000 you never got back
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Old 04-02-08, 04:30 AM
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ohio valley racing uses them
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Old 04-02-08, 04:58 AM
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The race promotors in our area have talked about using them, but the cost has been an obsticle. Do most areas require the rider to buy the chips, or do the race promotors buy them?
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Old 04-02-08, 05:09 AM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
$100 is nuts. ChampionChips are $35 here in Austin. I guess in Fla. you're probably using a more advanced system that adds no actual value other than to the manufacturer
Not true at all waterrockets.
The advanced system far outweighs anything out there and a local volunteer is updating the software to make it even easier than it already is.
This technology is used at every Florida Points Series race (~ 40 events a year), plus numerous other training races.
Results are instantaneous and registration is a snap with multiple ways of finding riders.
The cost is well worth the project and riders in general seem to be very happy.
Well worth the $90 chips, versus the dime-a-dozen technology being tried elsewhere.
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Old 04-02-08, 06:06 AM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
$100 is nuts. ChampionChips are $35 here in Austin. I guess in Fla. you're probably using a more advanced system that adds no actual value other than to the manufacturer

You might contact RunFar to find out what system they're using for timing. They do nearly all the events in Central Texas.
We use the AMB CHIP-X system; it's the same system as used by the Georgia Cup folks. I suspect one of the reasons we got it was to be compatible with them.

FWIW, it's kind of neat stuff. You can see dynamic results per lap for the various races at http://floridacycling.com
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Old 04-02-08, 06:47 AM
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Originally Posted by YMCA View Post
Not true at all waterrockets.
The advanced system far outweighs anything out there and a local volunteer is updating the software to make it even easier than it already is.
This technology is used at every Florida Points Series race (~ 40 events a year), plus numerous other training races.
Results are instantaneous and registration is a snap with multiple ways of finding riders.
The cost is well worth the project and riders in general seem to be very happy.
Well worth the $90 chips, versus the dime-a-dozen technology being tried elsewhere.
I guess instantaneous results and snappy registration don't add value to me. I'd rather use bikereg.com to sign up and not have to buy a $90 chip for my 5 races/year. I think asking people to spend another $90 is ludicrous.
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Old 04-02-08, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
I guess instantaneous results and snappy registration don't add value to me. I'd rather use bikereg.com to sign up and not have to buy a $90 chip for my 5 races/year. I think asking people to spend another $90 is ludicrous.
First, here in Florida you don't have to buy a new transponder every year. You can use the same one year after year.

As a matter of fact, you don't have to buy one at all. You can rent them for $10.00 for a weekend of racing.

I don't get it. Guys will drop $2000 on a pair of Zipps and use them for training wheels on their $3500 frames, or $250 for a measly pair of sunglasses. But they complain about $90 for a transponder. (If you add up a season's worth of racing costs, including travel, lodging, entry fees, tires, tubes, chains, cassettes, chamois creme, GU's, Gatorade, CO2 cartridges, recovery aids and supplements, yada...yada...yada...$90 for a transponder represents a very small percentage of your annual race expenses).

Bob
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Old 04-02-08, 08:44 AM
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Besides, think of the posuer value. Now I get to ride around with a red piece of plastic on my fork, with the smug self assurance that I am a racer.
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Old 04-02-08, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Bobby Lex View Post
I don't get it. Guys will drop $2000 on a pair of Zipps and use them for training wheels on their $3500 frames, or $250 for a measly pair of sunglasses. But they complain about $90 for a transponder. (If you add up a season's worth of racing costs, including travel, lodging, entry fees, tires, tubes, chains, cassettes, chamois creme, GU's, Gatorade, CO2 cartridges, recovery aids and supplements, yada...yada...yada...$90 for a transponder represents a very small percentage of your annual race expenses).
You know I'm not one of these guys, right?
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Old 04-02-08, 09:16 AM
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I'm with WR 100% on this one. Maybe because we've both worked in technology, I'm highly sceptical of solutions that throw tech at a problem for no good reason. Live laptimes on a website? Can you explain to me (beyond the gee-whiz factor) how this could be useful to ANYONE? $25k, $10/rider/race usefulness? Not even close.

Keep races cheap, simple, and popular. Cost is a major barrier of entry for beginning racers.
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Old 04-02-08, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
You know I'm not one of these guys, right?
Didn't say you were. But I'm sure you've seen your share of "those guys". Just take a gander around at all the eye-candy at every race. It's incredible.

Incidentally, another guy who is not one of "those guys" races here in Fl. and is a legend in the 45+ Masters races (including having won the State points championship). This old-school guy still uses toe clips! And kicks *****, too. Word has it he was mightily upset over the switch to transponders last year.

Personally, I love reading over the dynamic results that the system allows. You can almost re-enact the race even if you weren't there just by looking at the numbers. This guy took a flyer in lap 2. This guy got dropped in lap 9. This guy came in third, but he was a lap behind #1 and #2 (must have gotten lapped). Etc. Plus, it has drastically cut down on the "rider unknown" listings that were caused by illegible or obscured numbers at the finish line.

Bob
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Old 04-02-08, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Bobby Lex View Post
Didn't say you were. But I'm sure you've seen your share of "those guys". Just take a gander around at all the eye-candy at every race. It's incredible.

Incidentally, another guy who is not one of "those guys" races here in Fl. and is a legend in the 45+ Masters races (including having won the State points championship). This old-school guy still uses toe clips! And kicks *****, too. Word has it he was mightily upset over the switch to transponders last year.

Personally, I love reading over the dynamic results that the system allows. You can almost re-enact the race even if you weren't there just by looking at the numbers. This guy took a flyer in lap 2. This guy got dropped in lap 9. This guy came in third, but he was a lap behind #1 and #2 (must have gotten lapped). Etc. Plus, it has drastically cut down on the "rider unknown" listings that were caused by illegible or obscured numbers at the finish line.

Bob
Yeah, there are a lot of people spending a lot of money. Clearly.

So does ChampionChip not offer lap split records? I know that in a triathlon they get splits through multiple mats.
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Old 04-02-08, 05:24 PM
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I've never seen these used in a mass start bike race. Are they fast enough to sort out a pack sprint?

Edit: I guess I have seen them used on TV, but I've have never been in a race that used them.

Last edited by cmh; 04-02-08 at 06:07 PM.
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Old 04-02-08, 06:14 PM
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we use the finishlynx camera and that seems to do a very good job. the only issue that we have is with "biker error" in terms of positioning their numbers correctly.
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Old 04-02-08, 06:56 PM
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Originally Posted by cmh View Post
I've never seen these used in a mass start bike race. Are they fast enough to sort out a pack sprint?

Edit: I guess I have seen them used on TV, but I've have never been in a race that used them.
Yes.
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Old 04-02-08, 06:58 PM
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Originally Posted by cmh View Post
I've never seen these used in a mass start bike race. Are they fast enough to sort out a pack sprint?
They are pretty cool. I was in a race about 4 weeks ago where the time difference between 1st place and 4th place was 0.545 seconds, which the transponder system nailed perfectly. The results and times were printed and posted within minutes.

It makes pinning on a number almost unneccessary anymore.

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Old 04-03-08, 06:37 AM
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At albany ga cup, the top 4 in the 3s were all separated by less than .4 seconds. I won a 4's race last year with a time gap of 0.097 seconds. They do well enough. Just make sure the transponder is as far down as you can get it. Even better yet, put an extender on your fork to get it out an extra couple inches.

And after doing just under 18 races while renting the chips at $5-10 a pop, i decided to just buy one.
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Old 04-03-08, 07:22 AM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
I guess instantaneous results and snappy registration don't add value to me.
I think a promoter would think it's good. I pay a bunch of people to work registration. If I could free them up it'd cost me a lot less to run a race. Or, in the case of the missus, I'd be able to say "You don't have to work registration at Bethel".

That would be priceless.

Also you eliminate the "the guy who sits out 20 laps and then wins" scenario. Happens plenty of times. Or the "I got 6th" and I give him the money because it's $20 and I'm a nice guy. Then I find out he watched the sprint from the sidelines because he stopped at one to go.

But I'm with you, $100/rider for a set up might be a bit steep. Although if everyone used one, then I'd be willing to front money and essentially collect from other promoters who use the system, i.e. $5/racer/race to use the transponder things that I've essentially paid for. Something like that.

cdr
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Old 04-03-08, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by obra3 View Post
we use the finishlynx camera and that seems to do a very good job. the only issue that we have is with "biker error" in terms of positioning their numbers correctly.
Yep. I have no complaints.

Although I think the 2nd and 3rd place finishers of the Cat 3 Piece of Cake RR might have been swapped.
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Old 04-03-08, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Bobby Lex View Post
Didn't say you were. But I'm sure you've seen your share of "those guys". Just take a gander around at all the eye-candy at every race. It's incredible.

Incidentally, another guy who is not one of "those guys" races here in Fl. and is a legend in the 45+ Masters races (including having won the State points championship). This old-school guy still uses toe clips! And kicks *****, too. Word has it he was mightily upset over the switch to transponders last year.

Personally, I love reading over the dynamic results that the system allows. You can almost re-enact the race even if you weren't there just by looking at the numbers. This guy took a flyer in lap 2. This guy got dropped in lap 9. This guy came in third, but he was a lap behind #1 and #2 (must have gotten lapped). Etc. Plus, it has drastically cut down on the "rider unknown" listings that were caused by illegible or obscured numbers at the finish line.

Bob
But the chips sure ended the race reports of "I was about 15th or 20th, you know, (insert excuse here)"
Then the data comes up and you were about 63rd, 3 min down!
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Old 04-03-08, 04:24 PM
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I would pay for it. A lot of people race back to back races and don't have the opportunity to wait for and then contest the unofficial results. I can only imagine that the not having the headache of dealing with all of the people contesting alone, would make it worth it for the race organizers.
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