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John Freund Racing - New Vendor!

TSiAWD666

Supporting Vendor
2,613
839
Aug 15, 2003
Herndon, Virginia
John Freund Racing LLC is now operational and working with DSMTuners.com as a supporting vendor!
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This post is a general announcement about my small company and its products. All products are available now at my website!

https://jfracing.net

Who am I? I'm a 22+ year DSM owner. I started like everyone else, modifying their street car, doing some legal (and occasionally not quite so legal) drag racing, and dipping my toes into road courses. My car grew beyond the street and eventually became a full on race car as my interest in road courses grew. I do a lot of time attack racing in my 99 GSX, a car that now is probably one of the most modified DSMs in the world. Over the years I've developed a number of solutions to meet my needs in racing. Many times I was asked to make my systems available to others and so earlier this year I began to create products usable by the masses. I work in IT and am able to leverage my computer knowledge as well as my long underutilized Electrical Engineering degree in bringing some hopefully useful solutions to you.

What do I offer? Automotive electronics solutions. Currently most of products are built around Raspberry Pi mini computer systems, though over time that may change. This focus allows me to leverage my computer expertise in providing solutions that have never been offered to the DSM and overall racing world, at least not at entry level price points.

No really, what do you offer? Here's a quick breakdown of my product line-up.

PiLink
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PiLink is an automated datalogger for ECMLink ECUs. Tired of having to deal with a laptop, manually starting and stopping data captures in hopes you don't run out of battery or hit the brakes sending your laptop flying? This gives you a fully automated 12V solution but with a lot more! Some key features:
  • Storage on USB - review your logs wherever you like by pulling the USB drive and taking it with you
  • WiFi and Hotspot modes - connect to your PiLink wirelessly, whether at home or at the drag strip, and use its ECMLink software to not only view logs, but make changes to your ECMLink settings. No more messing with cables! Do this anywhere!
  • Remote Tuning support - connect your PiLink wirelessly to a cellular hotspot and a remote tuner can live tune your car remotely
  • Add a Display - Add any HDMI display and you can view ECMLink in action. Touchscreen as well as USB mouse/keyboard compatible allowing you to interact with ECMLink
  • Upgradeable - Want a digital rear view mirror? Want a GoPro-like action camera? Want touch-screen controlled Relays? Want an Android Auto car stereo interface in your aging DSM? Add them to PiLink! Coming soon - a backup camera upgrade option!
  • 3D Printed Case - customizable with lettering or even graphics per your request at no cost. Multiple Case Material Colors available!
7" Touch Display
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A high resolution vibrant HDMI touch display. Perfect for integration with PiLink but usable for other systems as well. I did a lot of research into touch displays and couldn't find an off the shelf high res touch screen that I liked or could recommend for PiLink that didn't cost an arm and a leg, so I began testing hardware components from China. After a long search and lots of testing I found some fantastic hardware, negotiated a relationship with the vendor, and designed the case all to produce what I believe is a superior display with nothing else close at its price point. Key Features
  • 7" 1920x1200 IPS Display - Large, vibrant, and high resolution, with a matte finish for low glare
  • Thin Bezel - about as thin as I could design it
  • Portable - extremely light and portable
  • HDMI Input - Works with any HDMI compatible system
  • Touch screen - Plug and Play via USB. Works without drivers in most systems
  • Multiple Mount Patterns - M4 bolts, AMPS or 75mm x 75mm VESA mounting patterns
  • Stereo Speakers - Yes, this display has some tiny stereo speakers and can receive audio over the HDMI connection
  • 3D Printed Case - lightweight, easily replaceable, and customizable. Being 3D printed however the case can't meet molded plastic quality, but it's pretty good
  • 1G/2G Dash snap-in (pops right into the OEM dash!) and surface mounting solutions available
Digital Mirror System (DMS)
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A digital replacement for hard to see mirrors, like those seen in many modern race cars but at a price the average grassroots racer can afford (and arguably superior in visual quality). Designed for racers looking for maximum awareness around their vehicle when on the track, but still quite applicable on the street for superior vision around your car (for off road use only!). The system replaces mirrors with high quality digital cameras and displays providing superior field of view and removes blind spots. Also eliminates obstructions such as large wings or body panels from obstructing your view. Key features:
  • [email protected] Camera - High Quality Video to see what's around you clearly, and is weather resistant
  • Fast boot time - boots to a mirror display in ~7 seconds
  • Multiple Camera Styles - Both a tall and thin design ideal for the rear, and a long and short design ideal for side view positions.
  • GoPro and RAM style mounting - Your choice, we can include either, or neither. We also offer roll cage and surface mounts for both!
  • Video Recording - Video records like a dashcam at all times, looping over the capacity of the USB drive storage. No sound though, as there isn't a microphone.
  • Customizable - Camera can be oriented as needed with mounts on top or bottom (specified in the ordering options so we can configure the software accordingly). Also case and camera lettering can be customized, including graphics, if desired (let us know in the order notes during checkout).
DSM Dash Panel Insert
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3D printed panel that snaps in place in your dash to fill the void if you no longer have a stereo. Can be customized for gauges or buttons. Available for both 1g and 2g DSMs.

Products Coming Soon
Action Camera
- Standalone Action Camera system to provide always on 12V powered recording for your car. No more messing with GoPro batteries and having to remember to power up, hit record, and stop recording! [email protected] GoPro Hero 3 quality without all the hassle.
PiLink Backup Camera Upgrade - some folks have asked for a reverse triggered backup camera add-on for their PiLink systems. Prototype unit is on its way to a tester now.
RaceCapture Dashboard - a automated digital dashboard for RaceCapture datalogger owners. The system runs RaceCapture software booting to your desired dash. It's even upgradeable to an Action Camera version for digital recording!
RaceCapture HUD - Like the RaceCapture Dashboard this system boots to your RaceCapture application to act as a digital dashboard but you view it through a transparent Heads-Up Display. Keep your eyes on the road and see critical information like Current Lap Time, Alerts, RPMs, etc., with minimal movement of your eyes.
DMS Crash Avoidance Upgrade - Radar detection and on-screen warning of high speed incoming vehicles, such as those in a higher class than you, that are catching up fast and will likely need to pass. Like the systems used in pro race cars like Corvette's Le Mans teams but at a fraction of the cost!

Is that it?
I did say I was a small company. It's literally just me 3D printing, researching, developing, testing, and assembling here in my home office. This isn't a full-time gig and I do this on the side, but as I have ideas more products may come. If you have some ideas you think I should explore, please reach out! If you have comments, questions, feedback, or general excitement, comment below and let's talk!

If you read this far, thank you! I hope I have something useful to you, but if not I sincerely appreciate the interest!
 
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1990TSIAWDTALON

Moderator
7,952
3,883
Nov 14, 2013
Independence, Kansas
Very enthusiastic man, building his own stuff like the masses could use is a WIN for all the DSMer's and possible other platforms John!
Best of luck and I am sure its gonna be a good "sidekick"! :thumb:
Thanks for the great contributions!
Marty
 

kidmet

Supporting Member
219
21
Jul 23, 2012
Aurora, Colorado
This is cool and I want to pull the trigger, but wondering about lower solutions for all of this? How would one lower these all the most efficient way. Also, will there be grounding noise when trying to output sound from 3.5?
 

TSiAWD666

Supporting Vendor
2,613
839
Aug 15, 2003
Herndon, Virginia
@kidmet there shouldn't be any grounding noise. Can you explain what you mean by "lower solutions for all this"?
 

TSiAWD666

Supporting Vendor
2,613
839
Aug 15, 2003
Herndon, Virginia
In general the power management is kept very simple. With each main unit (PiLink, DMS) you basically connect it to your 12V car electrical system with power, ground and an ACC line to indicate when the car is on. Power draw is at most 4A for a given system, usually less. If using a display it powers via USB plugged into the main unit, so no additional power source is needed.
 

kidmet

Supporting Member
219
21
Jul 23, 2012
Aurora, Colorado
In general the power management is kept very simple. With each main unit (PiLink, DMS) you basically connect it to your 12V car electrical system with power, ground and an ACC line to indicate when the car is on. Power draw is at most 4A for a given system, usually less. If using a display it powers via USB plugged into the main unit, so no additional power source is needed.

So if you don't have a radio, you can naturally just use those power sources. Thanks.
 

tstkl

Proven Member
3,874
60
Feb 10, 2005
SoCal, California
I was looking at building something similar to this myself but haven't found the time to put it together (also I started with an arduino which doesn't have enough power). You should add an option for gps and accel/gyro data. I believe the garmin virb x software can integrate this data onto the camera footage and is free so it makes comparisons of side by side runs easy. Also is the action camera powered off the pilink? For me the holy grail would be the pi link, 7 inch display, action cam, and remote mount gps/accel/gyro unit all taking power from the pilink so you only need one harness integrating into the chassis. If your system can do all that consider me sold. You could add a few other sensors to the gps unit but the value add would be minimal (baro, ambient temp, etc)

Also ideally I wanted to have the car do an automatic data dump once it detects my home wifi so I could park the car in the garage and then a day or two later go on my home server and review the data without having to boot the car up and download the data. This is more of a stretch goal though.

Edit: saw the thing about google drive so I'm guessing I could set up an fpt or something and have it work. Also I was thinking it would be really helpful to me if you could post a block diagram with everything and how it goes together. So like the 7 inch touch screen uses hdmi for video but does it use wifi or bluetooth for data or usb? How does it get power? I take it some people use it like a laptop so they charge it independently but does it have a battery integrated for that? What kind of cable does the action cam use, etc.
 
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TSiAWD666

Supporting Vendor
2,613
839
Aug 15, 2003
Herndon, Virginia
@tstkl Thank you for the suggestions.

As you discovered I already provide an automated sync feature with Google Drive, but using similar code for a sync to a local wifi NAS would be fairly trivial. So I have you covered there and I can help with that setup.

I haven't done more than a cursory examination into adding data to the unit because the focus is ECMLink, and ECMLink does not allow data ingestion in its current version. It would basically require cracking the code and adding the whole function and while I've poked around the java code I haven't written java in nearly 20 years and I'm am not sure I'm going to be able to do add it myself. I'd also mulled over the idea of adding data not for inclusion in ECMLink logs but just for data overlay like you suggest, but it's quite difficult per my research. Just getting the video and audio alone to work well was a royal PITA and I think to attempt data overlay would require basically starting from scratch with a new video pipeline. I'll keep it in mind that and should I have some free time to dig who knows maybe something will come of it. I could easily set up gps data capture for later post processing overlay like with RaceRender, but that's about all I could assure is 100% possible at this time.

The action camera is powered by PiLink, yes. Basically the 7" display and camera take power from PiLink so there is only one harness to the entire system. Ideally any add-ons would continue to be powered by PiLink as well to keep things as simple as possible.

7" touch screen uses three cables: USB-C for power, micro USB for the touch screen, and an HDMI cable for the video feed, all three connecting to ports on PiLink. It is not battery powered. The idea behind it with PiLink is that it is a permanent fixture in the car, though I guess it's fairly portable as long as you don't mind the three cables. I've certainly traveled with it to do some development while on various features during vacation this summer.
The upgrade cameras, be it Action Camera or DMS, connect with an HDMI cable to PiLink, and nothing else.

In case it's not clear, the system overall is open in that you have complete access to everything. Since you mentioned that you had thought about creating something like this that tells me you're somewhat knowledgeable with Linux. So you can add things to the system as you see fit, so if my offering isn't quite tailored to your needs you can take on the challenge of tweaking things to better fit you.
 

tstkl

Proven Member
3,874
60
Feb 10, 2005
SoCal, California
Sounds good. I was definitely thinking of having it not be integrated into the dsmlink log as like you mentioned that adds quite a bit of complication. I will say if you want your system to appeal to a broader audience than mitsubishis having it work like a generic DAQ may be an opportunity for that. My current process involves collecting data from dsmlink/my phone (gps/accel/gyro/video) / other devices and then I created a spreadsheet that I paste all of that data into in order to sync the data. Getting that down to 2 sources (dsmlink and some generic daq) would therefore be a win. On the flip side have you approached ecmlink to see if they would be willing to support an effort like you described? Obviously that would be the most seamless as you don't have to worry about syncing the time but not a requirement.

I'm thinking I'll pick up a kit later today so I may reach out for a call or something after I place the order.
 

TSiAWD666

Supporting Vendor
2,613
839
Aug 15, 2003
Herndon, Virginia
Yeah I've spoken with Tom Dorris of ECMLink, and he explicitly said he will not provide any support for my system, including expanding his in any way. I think he's been checked out of enhancing ECMLink for a good many years and has no interest anymore, just moved on in his life. I didn't ask for support, but he made it a point to make that clear. I also know he has... ideas in the back of his mind for ECMLink related products and doesn't want to give a potential competitor fuel even if he never decides to actually implement his ideas. I did explain to him though that if he ever had a competing product I'd just stop production since I'm only doing this because people need/want this product and I basically had the base system already designed and tested in my race car.

I will keep the analog input idea in mind. I mean it's been on my mind for a long time, just I didn't expect a user such as yourself requesting data acquisition in parallel with ECMLink, only integrated. You're the first to request it actually. If there are more people that want this sort of add-on please do reach out to me as hearing from more of you would push things along in my head for sure.

If you have more questions that you'd like to ask in a call, just message me your phone number and a good time to call (I'm flexible today, not so much the rest of the week) and I'll reach out. We can talk before placing an order as I certainly want you to be confident you're getting what you need.
 
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tstkl

Proven Member
3,874
60
Feb 10, 2005
SoCal, California
Ordered. Also I highly doubt anyone else would be interested but since my car has steering wheel mounted controls (starion) I picked up a PAC SWI-RC1 for cheap. I was thinking though it might have been better to hook the wire directly up to the pi and have that do what the SWI is doing. Just me? Bueller?
 

TSiAWD666

Supporting Vendor
2,613
839
Aug 15, 2003
Herndon, Virginia
Ordered. Also I highly doubt anyone else would be interested but since my car has steering wheel mounted controls (starion) I picked up a PAC SWI-RC1 for cheap. I was thinking though it might have been better to hook the wire directly up to the pi and have that do what the SWI is doing. Just me? Bueller?

Depending on how your steering controls work I may be able to tie them to inputs on the Pi. The Pi can detect ground inputs or 3.3V inputs on its own through its GPIO, but I now have a very simple and small circuit for taking 12V inputs as well (something I'm using for reverse detection for the hopefully soon to be released backup camera option).
 

TSiAWD666

Supporting Vendor
2,613
839
Aug 15, 2003
Herndon, Virginia

tstkl

Proven Member
3,874
60
Feb 10, 2005
SoCal, California
Depending on how your steering controls work I may be able to tie them to inputs on the Pi. The Pi can detect ground inputs or 3.3V inputs on its own through its GPIO, but I now have a very simple and small circuit for taking 12V inputs as well (something I'm using for reverse detection for the hopefully soon to be released backup camera option).

I'm pretty sure it's 12 volts. I'm not sure if the system on my conquest is the same at a component level as the stealth, but the radios are interchangeable. I believe the way the system works is it just counts the number of pulses and determines what button was pressed based on that. At a component level on the conquest there are two IR transmitters on the steering wheel and two IR receivers on the steering column. Those receivers send their signal to the radio. Here's the install instructions for the stealth (how I found the system in the first place). I haven't tried it out on the conquest yet, but based on how you "train" the system I'm confident it should work.

http://www.supercar-engineering.com/rubberducky/3S/Mods/All/SWRC/index.html
 
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