Tutorial - BistLap

Software:

  • BistLap doesn't support ghost-cars. Therefore even if they are configured, their passage won't be detected and the cars won't appear on the timetable. To start you need to connect the CU, by selecting the COM port to which the CU is connected ( you can also click on the button for automatic research). Then click on "connect CU". Once detected, you will notice at the bottom of the screen the version of the firmware of the CU.
  • Main menu

  • SECTORS: you can set the number of sectors on the track. At first you are supposed to install carrera checklane. Once this is done, you need to indicate if the exit from the pitlane is after the finish line (which means that the finish line is on the same line of the boxes). This is important for the exact counting of the sectors, in case of a list of events occurring on the track. Note: if the car ends up without fuel, the sectors will not be counted and by passing through the Pit, the count will resume.
    SPEEDTRAP: "speed trap" indicates 2 straight lines with infrared sensors, which are built one after the other. By selecting the sector on which the speed trap is built, there will be no time signaling after the passage through the first sector. Whereas after passing through the following sensor, the intermediate time is regularly detected. The speed of passage is also calculated, by considering the distance of 34.5 cm between the 2 straight lines with the sensors.
    (ver 1.1.1.0)It's now possible to change the standard length by editing the confTab.cfg files, just change the value of "mtSpTrap" field by entering the length in meters (0,345 = standard straight).
    TRACK LENGTH: it is only useful to calculate the average speed of the lap and it gives the results of the concluded session on the page of results.
    MIN. LAP TIME:(version 1.1.0.7) lap time in milliseconds. Below this value, the lap will not be counted (only if >0).
    LIMITATOR PITLANE:once activated, it will limit the maximum speed of the car that passes beyond the sensor of the pit. The best option is to remove the limitator on the finish line, if this is built on the exit from the pit. Note: Once the limitator is active, the car will adopt the speed, which is written in the main menu, in the space near the driver name. It will thus ignore all modification done by using the buttons on the CU.
    FUEL WARNING:This value indicates when you will be warned about the fuel level, by a vocal warning ( if "voice" is flagged in the menu). From this point the fuel barr has to turn into red. This is only the first alarm, whereas you cannot configure the last alarm, which corresponds to the last line of the tank. If “voice" is flagged, you will be able to hear the last alarm as well.
    RACE/QUALIFYING/PRATICE: The race and the qualification will end once the selected number of lap has been reached. During the qualification, the position is calculated according to the best time of the lap and not to every passage of sectors, which yet happens in the race.
    F1MODE: when the first finish the race, the race will end as all drivers cross the finish line, regardless the number of lap they did.
    PENALTIES: once selected, you will have a number of penalties corresponding to the inserted number -1. If you insert 5, at the 5th penalty your race will end ( the laps will not be counted anymore). To register the penalty, you need to press the button "START" on the CU. The traffic light with the penalties will appear straight below. You can then move with TAB and use the arrows up and down to change the values. Otherwise you can push the numeric button of the ID car. Once the limit has been reached, the driver line on the table will change colour, by turning into yellow/orange. This is to warn that at the following penalty disqualification will occur. At the disqualification, the colour of the line will be red and the laps and the intermediate times of the driver will not be counted anymore.
    (version 1.1.1.4) Two penalty management modes were introduced: Stop & Go, which allows you to stop at the box to decrease the number of penalties you have. (the time of stop is configurable in the confTab.cfg file)
    By selecting "Stop & Go" you can also enable the "affect performance" option that decreases the performance of the cars according to the penalties assigned. With the same set of stops you can restore performance. An icon on the board reports the status of degradation.
    DAMAGES/ RANDOM EVENTS: when selected, the cars undergo random events and these can change their conditions on the track: braking, speed and fuel can be influenced. The event is removed (fixed) by stopping at the pits and the car gets the basic values, that are written on the main menu near the driver's name. Note: When "penalties" is active, the probability for a car to fall in a random event rises according to the relation penalties / maximum penalty. In practice, the more penalties you get, the higher is the probability that the car will be damaged. The probability is also influenced by the number of laps done without passing by the pits. DO NOT ACTIVATE this option if you had not previously installed a pitlane: you will not be able to cope with the damage. The following video shows a damage at the "differential" (unfortunately together with the warning of scarce fuel).


    PERFORMANCES DROP: by selecting it on the bar, you can choose the progressive drop in performances. The performances of the car will decrease gradually (according to the number of laps done), during the session. They will then be restored by stopping at the boxes, according to the parameters written near the names of each driver.
    (version 1.1.1.4)An icon shows the wear condition of the vehicle
    VOICE: By selecting this option, you will hear vocal signals during the ongoing session, such as warnings about the oil levels, about the sops at the boxes, fast laps, overtakings and so on. The voice of the selected language is the one installed on windows.
    NAME SESSION:(ver 1.1.1.1) It's now possible to customize name sessione. This name will be shown in the results and file's name (telemetry, screenshot)
    SETTING DRIVERS AND PARAMETERS:On the right side of the menu, you can set the colour, the name, the picture and the parameters of the vehicles of each driver (ID order). A special feature of BistLap is the possibility of exporting those values (colour, image, name and car parameters) and to save them as a file. This method is really useful. For example it is possible to create configurations for every single car and/or driver. In addition to this you can quickly switch drivers on different ID, just by importing the files on the selected line. To export and import the file, you only have to click twice on the icons (with the folder and the arrow) at the beginning and at the end of the line.
    SAVE CONFIGURATION: It is possible to save all the options, which are selected on the menu (drivers and parameters as well), and the will be uploaded at the following opening of the program. At the opening of BistLap, as long as there is an existing configuration file, this will automatically look for the CU in the selected COM port. There is no need to click on "connect CU".
  • Time Table

  • The table shows two graphics: the first one dedicated to tracks with a single sector, the other to tracks with more sectors.
    In the upper bar, under "configuration", you can set the organisation, according to the position or the ID of the cars. Furthermore, it is possible to decide for which event to habilitate or deactivate the corresponding sound.

    Through this menu you can also open a secondary window, which shows the data of the last laps for each driver.




    In the central part of the upper barr, the ongoing session is described ( if it's a practice, a competition or a qualification, the bar will have a different colour) and the total number of total laps is displayed as well. By clicking on the word (PRACTICE-COMPETITION-QUALIFICATION), it is possible to reset the system or to switch to a different session. Note: the laps number can only be set on the main menu.
    By press ALT+S key you can do a screenshot, which will be saved in the execution folder of the program.


    In the practical session, if you click twice on the driver's name, you can open a window, where it is possible to change the basic parameters of the selected car. The same data will be reported (but NOT saved in the configuration) on the main menu.
    The section "gap to the bestlap", which is present on the board with several sectors, it indicates the distance between the best lap ever, in the ongoing lap. This means that in case of qualifications, at every passage of sector, the difference with the bestlap will be shown. In this way it is possible to notice an improvement or a worsening and also which is the sector in which you lose or gain. At every inter-time the field will flash for some seconds and in case of time record, it will become red in colour. Moreover, again in case of time record, BistLap will produce an acoustic signal, in order for the driver to have an idea of its performance without looking at the table. The following video shows the flashing of the field, matched with the acoustic signal:


    The fields "Laps" e "Sectors" will flash at every passage. This is to have a better proof of completed passage (in addition to the acoustic signal of the CU). This feature is really useful when you click on "start" on the CU to stop the race: in fact it can happen that a car has almost passed through a sensor, but the race has been stopped. At this point the car might proceed due to inertial forces beyond the sensor without its passage to be counted by the CU. This does not actually relevate the passages while it's stopped. By looking at the table after each stop, you can easily notice if the passages that are indicated are correct or not, just by seeing them flashing. If you accidentally cause the shortcircuit with the brushes, this reset the CU. The internal clock will then be reset and all the times will be out of order. I have inserted a control system, which is supposed to limit the damages. Thus the the times of the ongoing lap will be untrustable, but then from the following lap on, you will have the correct times again and you will be able to proceed the session correctly.
  • Traffic Light / Stop

  • The window of the traffic light appears every time you click on the button "START" on the CU. If you press it during a competition/practice/qualification, everything will stop, both the cars on the field and the time! (Not the real one, don't worry: you will keep on aging).
    Here, in addition to what is written in the paragraph of penalties, the traffic light will became transparent to show the timetable, by pressing the button "ENTER" of the PC. Then, by pressing it once more, or by pressing "START" (CU) it will get visible again. By pressing F2, you are able to force the laps and the sectors in case of missed signaling from the CU.
    You can use the button tab and the arrows to increase or decrease the value of both the variation of exits/penalties and the variation of laps. Everything is followed by an acoustic signal. The exit/penalties, can be assigned in an easier way as well: by pressing a numerical button corresponding to the ID of the car, you can rise the existing value of 1. Note: if you change the sector of a driver in a lap, that lap will not be convalidated if it's the bestlap.
    (ver 1.1.1.1)If needeed, you can now click on the name to force the car parameters in the Main Menu
  • Session results

  • This page can be open automatically at the end of the qualification and competition sessions, as the number of selected laps is completed or by clicking on "End session" on the menu "configuration" on the table.
    Here all data of the session are displayed by ordering the drivers according to their arrival position ( or according to their best time in case of qualification / practice).
    The field "distance from the first"refers to the distance at the same passage: if for example the driver ahead passes through sector 2 during the lap number 10, with a total time of 50 seconds, while the driver at the 6th position passes with a total time of 80 seconds, the distance, which will be shown is of course of 30 seconds (probably with a difference of 2 laps between the drivers). In case the races ends in that moment and the "F1mode" is active, you will notice (as you can see in the picture) that the total times of the first driver and the last one are really close, but the distance between them is really high because it refers to the same passage! Obviously by looking at the laps, you can notice the 2 laps of gap.
    (ver 1.1.0.8)In pratice or qualify session, the average speed is relative to best lap. In race session, the average speed is relative to the total laps completed.
    (ver 1.1.0.9)It's possible to change the speed shown on table by editing confTab.cfg file. just change the value of "convvel" field by entering a multiplier that affects the average and maximum speed. For example, if it detects a speed of 20 km/h, setting a multiplier of 16.55, it will be displayed 331 km/h.
    It is possible to do a screenshot and/or export the telemetry in format .csv (which can be read by a calc sheet). Then by filtering the different fields, you can do different analysis about the drivers, the times, the sectors, the speed and so on.

  • Hardware:

    Additional sectors

  • In order to make use of BistLap in the best way, by adopting the partial timing and the speed tracking, you need to get tracks with infrared sensors.
    WARNING: WITH CHECKLANE CARRERA you can skip the proceeding that is described as follows.
    If you want to connect a sector, you need to have a spare CU, where you can unscrew the 2 screws which connect the CU to the track and then you have to cut with a small knife the plastic underneath (the one that covers the circuits).
    Once the plastic is cut and removed by unscrewing the other screws, you have to cut or disconnect the cables that connect the CU to the track. In practice you only have to keep the track with the infrared sensors:
    Once the cables with the infrared sensors are made longer, it is necessary it connect them in a parallel way to the CU used. I suggest you should put a female connector on the CU and a male one on the additional components, in order to be able to remove them easily. So you had better connect them instead of weld them directly on the CU.
    When the CU is open, these are the connections to make to add the sectors:

  • Common issues and solutions

  • IMPORTANT: Run the program in administration mode ( right button on the link -> run as administrator)
    If for any reason the automatic data collection of the CU doesn't work, you can try to write manually "COM" in the proper field. If even in this way the CU cannot be connected, you can check the driver of the cable USB/serial.
    The optimal resolution is 1366 x 768. The timetable adapts horizontally also to lower or higher resolutions, but some problems may occur with the height if you use characters with dimensions of windows above 125%. To avoid this problems, press with the right button on the icon with the link of BistLap and select "features". Select on the sheet "compatibility" the action "deactivate the redimensioning of the screen for high DPI values".
    If you make many laps without activating the software, it is better to switch off the CU and the turn it on again, before starting the system.