Family Software Newsletter #5 - March 15, 2000


Topics

1. The Difference in Data Recorders
2. The Difference in Sampling Rates
3. Comparing Apples to Apples
4. FREE Software Download
5. REAL World Technical Support


-- The Difference in Data Recorders --
I received some e-mail this week concerning selecting a data recorder. I thought it might be helpful to everyone.

Question:
Hello, I'm really thinking about a DataMaster for my super comp car, 23 T altered. I do some bracket racing, some divisional and national events. I'd really like to do more, but work calls first, it pays for this hobby. I really don't know much about this end of it, data recording. I need all the help I can get in selecting a data recorder. How is a DataMaster different? Thank you.

Answer:
I'm a SuperComp racer myself and designed the DataMaster for sportsman drag racing in particular. The DataMaster is an all-digital computer, so it is very fast. And, that is essential in throttle stop racing. We need to be able to see the slightest variation in engine RPM when the stop is activated and deactivated and when the car is 'coasting' on the stop. We also need to see the slightest variation in traction all the way down the track. With EVERY other data recorder on the market, NONE of this is possible. The sampling rates are far too slow to get any worthwhile data. For example, at 60 to 100 samples per second, a sampling rate this slow can only show a deviation of about 150 engine RPM. That is worthless information in our sport! As slow as they are already, the other data recorders spend all of this time looking at ANALOG (slow) devices to monitor pressures and temperatures, meanwhile missing all the important data!

--The Difference in Sampling Rates --

DataMaster gives a vehicle reaction time, exact time to distance information, track condition information, shift points, and other valuable data that you just can't get anywhere else. This is because our sampling rate is over 3300 times per second! DataMaster reads every ignition pulse at each quarter turn of the crankshaft and then measures the width of each pulse (pulse width) to produce a frequency. It repeats the same process for the drive shaft. In this manner, DataMaster can produce an accurate RPM reading that can reveal variances of as little as three (3) engine RPM. This kind of accuracy cannot be achieved by simply 'counting' pulses as the other data loggers do.

DataMaster can be calibrated to any racetrack and to your race car, to model roll out and tire growth. By doing this, DataMaster reports a vehicle reaction time and an actual time slip that will match a Compulink timing system to within .001 of a second. No more bogus time cards!

With a DataMaster Sportsman computer you can find mere thousandths of a second of variation in performance from one run to another and from one lane to another. This is because our billet drive shaft sensor ring has twelve (12) points. Only DataMaster has the speed to do this. In this manner, our computer can see as little as 1 inch of rear tire movement. And, by using this many pickup points, every time you stage your car, a pickup point is next to the sensor pickup. The other companies provide you with a cheap and inaccurate magnetic switch and one or two cheap magnets that you glue on! Very crude indeed! We use a very expensive and highly accurate proximity sensor. In fact, our proximity sensor, cable, and billet sensor ring alone cost us over $200.00. Call one of the other companies and ask them for the FREQUENCY RATE of their drive shaft sensor. More than likely, they won't be able to tell you. Or, they won't tell you! Our proximity sensor is rated at over 3,000 CYCLES PER SECOND!

-- Comparing Apples to Apples --
With DataMaster you don't get just a screen full of unknown data on a graph. You get an exact graph representing the actual 1/4 mile run. You don't have to search for it, it is right there! And when you overlay graphs of other runs, you are therefore comparing apples to apples. Everything lines up exactly to the .001 of a second. Again, there is nothing in the world that can begin to compare to DataMaster, not for any amount of money. If you hit the brakes at 999 feet, the DataMaster will show you this, exactly. Can any of the others? Absolutely not!

-- FREE Software Download --
DataMaster is packaged as a complete system including the DataMaster Analyzer software which enables you to download the information to your PC and graph out the runs. By overlaying your Base run on top of your Predicted run, you can easily see exactly where on the race track that the race car did not repeat and therefore, why you didn't 'run the number' you predicted. If you use the DataMaster to find, analyze, and then remove the variables in your race car, you'll be able to stop 'chasing the number.'

The DOS version of our DataMaster Analyzer software is available to you as a FREE download on our web site. You don't need a data recorder to test the software and see exactly what a DataMaster does better than any other data logger system in the world! Our software can be run from DOS or Windows. Therefore, you can use ANY IBM compatible computer to download and analyze runs. And, you won't have to wait very long, because DataMaster downloads a run in just four (4) seconds! The DataMaster stores up to four (4) runs in memory, so when you get into the later rounds, you can save your runs and download them later.

Don't be fooled by some of the advertisements for the competitions 'fabulous' Windows software. I checked out one of the largest manufactuer's Windows software. You know what I found? Nothing! Their software showed nothing. You couldn't overlay runs because the software didn't even know where the actual run is on the graph. The software offered colorful graphs, but with no meaningful data whatsoever! There might be something there for the circle track guys, but not for a sportsman drag racer. I've also seen other racers using another competitors product, where they have ten (10) foot long paper print outs on their trailer floor, trying to match up the runs side by side. Absolutely ridiculous, and totally worthless!

-- REAL World Technical Support --
With Family Software, you'll get better technical support than anywhere else on the planet. Why? Because, I design and program all of Family Software's products and I use them all on my own very competitive SuperComp dragster. All of my experience and knowledge is available to you and to our other customers. Try to find that kind information at any one of the other companies selling data loggers. You won't be able to, I guarantee it! Family Software cares about the racer and his/her success as a racer. The other companies just want your money! Sad, but true.

-- Toll Free Ordering --
We also have a new Toll Free Order line to save you even more money! If you're placing an order by phone, call 877-497-0992. If you need information or technical help, call 610-497-5561.

-- Secure Ordering --
You can safely order directly from our web site. All of your information is handled on our Secure Server. We have established a privacy policy and it is posted on the web site. Our company has now been registered with the Public Eye. You can check our ratings by clicking on the Public Eye link on our Home Page or Order Form.

If you have questions or topics that you would like to see covered in this newsletter, please Email them to me.

Bob Kodadek
SC 1596
Family Software - Drag Racing Computers and Software
http://www.iFamilySoftware.com - 610.497.5561(Voice/Fax)


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