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LCD display integrated on a race car dashboard

fidoice07

New member
Hi I just joined the board today,

I am working on a project that involves building the dashboard for a formula one race car and we need to purchase a LCD display. I'm very new to the project and the vast field of electronics in general. In fact I'm learning so much as I go along! I apologize in advance if my questions sound vague or unclear; I'll do the best i can to explain myself.

I was wondering what application the crystalfontz displays are meant to run on because we are trying to have the display integrate with our dashboard which will receive data via RS-232 but will first be converted from CAN bus protocol using a pic microcontroller (PIC14F458). Does this sound feasible? Any answers, questions or suggestions would be very helpful. Thanks a lot
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CF Tech

Administrator
Do you want a graphic or text?

If you are going to have a small microcontroller anyway (did you look at the AVR or MSP430?) then there is really no reason to use a serial display, you might as well use a standard character or standard graphic module and have the microcontroller talk directly to the display.

The serial would work of course, but it adds another layer which is likely unnecessary.
 

fidoice07

New member
First, no, I hadn't looked at either of those microcontrollers. One of my team members found the PIC I listed. But looking
at AVR,it seems like it would suit our needs much better. I think I'll look into it more closely and find out what the other team members think. Thanks for this suggestion :)

Second, I need a text display. This display will be displaying key "maintenance" and "driver" information (e.g. driver- lap speed, lap time; maintenance- oil pressure, temperature readings, ABS failure etc...)
that it will acquire from the ECM and send to microcontroller via CAN bus.

Third, I was looking at the Positive Transflective Green LED Backlit LCD Module (CFAH1601A-GGB-JP) which is a standard char. display.

One of the main things the drivers will rely on the dash for while racing (drivers wont look on dash during race for maintenance info) is the lap time and they will only have a few seconds to do it. Thus, this piece of info must be very visible. Due to this, is there any way we can edit the character font size to display very big font in one line on a typical two line character display or can we just purchase a display that displays one line with very big font (at least 2x size of 3.07 x 6.56 mm--->the chars of display we're looking at)? Thanks a lot


Anymore advice or explanations would be greatly appreciated. Thanks a lot

regards,
fido
 
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CF Tech

Administrator
Here is a thousand words:



By the way you can put together a really nice C development environment for the AVR with AVR Studio (free) WinAVR (free) and a JTAGICEII (about $300).
 

X7JAY7X

New member
You can edit the 8 custom characters in a way that you can have big numbers on a 2x16 LCD. Big letters is not possible, I spent many hours on trying to overcome this problem with no luck. There simply isnt enough custom characters to make the big letters work.

However, if you just want lap time, then you are set. Displaying them is kinda tricky though, but it is possible.

They do make large character one and two line displays that would probably be a better option for you.

J
 

CF Tech

Administrator

knowley

New member
Cool, which F1 team?

I must admit I didn't think F1 cars have a "dashboard" as such, and their lap times are relayed over the radio by the pit crew & race strategist aren't they?
 

fidoice07

New member
Actually, for F1 competition we don't have anything like a pit crew or race strategist. This is against the rules. Although previously, the way we have gotten lap times is from a lap timing system. This year I'm trying to incorporating this piece of data on to our dashboard through the display.

Are you part of an F1 team as well Knowley?
 

knowley

New member
I wish I was ;)

I am seriously interested in cars though... see the links in my signature :D

The thing you've got planned could work very well in any race/trackday car - I do a lot of trackdays so this is an interesting project you have going... Have you thought about inegrating other infomation like Oil & Water temps, Oil pressure and other vital statistics?

I presume you've seen products from companies like STACK etc?
 
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