Poll

Would you be happy to fit a device to illuminate your rear competition number?

Yes
3 (42.9%)
No
4 (57.1%)

Total Members Voted: 7

Voting closed: May 19, 2019, 07:47:08 pm

Author Topic: Illuminated Rear Number Boards  (Read 188 times)

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Offline Ian T

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Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« on: May 05, 2019, 07:47:08 pm »
There has been a suggestion that motorcycle competitors should be encouraged to fit a light to illuminate their rear competition number.

The suggestion has been made because observers sometimes have difficulty seeing a competitors number in the dark and so cannot record their performance.

Offline David (tufty) White

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2019, 07:50:26 pm »
It's hard enough to find somewhere to find a place to put it on a bike, yet alone rigging up some lighting for it.

I can appreciate the difficulties for the marshal, but I have no idea how I'd be able to light up a number on my bike.

Offline Tim Kingham

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2019, 07:52:17 am »
My rear trials  number plate is mounted high up at the back above the level of the seat i make it out of the bottom and side of a plastic milk carton if I come off the back it simply bends away and springs back. I cover the number in clear Fablon (same as my route card)  It never gets dirty up high  and is easy to see.
Personally I think there may be a case for transponders on all vehicles that would automate a lot of timekeeping and Marshall time

Offline Simon Woodall

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2019, 12:19:25 pm »
Quote
I think there may be a case for transponders on all vehicles
Whilst transponders are relatively cheap, the receiving apparatus is horrendously expensive, even to hire.
Fine for circuits, where you just need one on the start-finish line, for marathons where you might have one halfway round as well, but we would need many, and the cost would run into thousands. (unless someone out there knows different)

Offline rick howell

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2019, 07:22:28 pm »
I think an effective illumination can be quite tricky.

Do you cascade light over the face of the number? Or backlight? Should the lit number be in a specific position so the marshal always knows where to look? (on the rider's back for example).

Personally I already locate the number immediately above the rear light so the number is lit, to a degree, by the rear light. Maybe the issue is that the bike has gone by some distance before the rear number is entirely visible so an option would be to have two numbers - one on each side on the bike to the rear of the rider, or mounted in some way so the marshals can see the numbers more easily no matter which side they are located in the section.

No doubt the ever-resourceful MCC rider will devise a means of mounting and lighting the number(s) if required.

Offline Jason Potts

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2019, 08:15:18 pm »
I think additional side number boards are a good idea. All race bikes have large numbers on both sides of the seat pod.

The old scramblers used to have those circular plastic number boards on both sides of the rear mudguard. Wouldn't take much to fit those Im guessing. Bigger numbers are the way to go I recon. Don't think back lighting little numbers will help much.


Offline Paul Wheatley

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2019, 08:44:01 pm »
Speaking as a long term observer, it's often very difficult to see a number on a motorbike in the dark. I use a torch but obviously don't shine it at an oncoming biker. There are often only a few seconds to jump down into the track behind a bike and attempt to locate the number. The important thing is to put it somewhere where it stays clear of mud. At Hackmarsh we had two bikes on the section at once so it was vital to make sure we recorded the correct result for the correct competitor. It was made easier because we had radio contact between the start, the middle and the top of the section, each being out of sight of the other. The starter was announcing the numbers as they left the start and because some rear numbers were either unreadable or apparently missing, it was a good job he did. On a number of occasions I wasn't able to see a number and had to confirm with the starter.
PW.

Offline Lee Sample

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2019, 10:24:44 am »
I voted on this, before i realised it was a bike topic. D'Oh!
if it helps at all though, to illuminate my rear numbers on my car, i used some LED number plate light bolts - like these: https://www.ebay.co.uk/p/UK-2x-Universal-LED-Number-Plate-Tail-Tidy-Lights-Car-Motorcycle-Bolt-Light-Lamp/11007508210?iid=142989483349

theyre very small, but cast a reasonable amount of light, so might be of use to the biking fraternity?

Lee


Offline Paul Wheatley

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #9 on: May 07, 2019, 06:09:44 pm »
I thought them worth a punt of 2.99 so I'll report back when they get here! It might be possible to put a resistor in series to drop the voltage - I know, I'll use a light bulb....  ;)
PW.

Offline Tony Bishop

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #10 on: May 07, 2019, 06:18:33 pm »
Be aware that sometimes LEDs don't like being wired in parallel with conventional light bulbs so you may have problems if you propose to tap in to the rear light supply.  :(  :(

Offline Ian T

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #11 on: May 07, 2019, 09:40:02 pm »
Quote
I think there may be a case for transponders on all vehicles
Whilst transponders are relatively cheap, the receiving apparatus is horrendously expensive, even to hire.
Fine for circuits, where you just need one on the start-finish line, for marathons where you might have one halfway round as well, but we would need many, and the cost would run into thousands. (unless someone out there knows different)
Transponders are used at the Welsh 2-Day Trial (also known as the Welsh 2-Day Enduro) on the special tests and if I recall correctly, at the start and finish. I wonder if we could ascertain how much they pay?

I would imagine technological advancement may drive down the costs.

Offline Alastair Queen

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #12 on: May 08, 2019, 12:17:21 pm »
Whilst on the topic of visibility of numbers.....[and, to follow on, the accurate recording of same?]....On a normal  observed section [where only one vehicle is in section at any given time..unless a fail, and awaiting a gap to return?]....is it necessary for every Observer..[persons recording passage].....to record the competitors number as well?

If the Start Observer can record the competitor number, whilst that competitor is stationary [and a torch or light can be used to effect?]...then that Observers record card could be deemed the 'master' record for the section....other observers' cards being completed in a line-numbered order, as to performance?  As now, no record of performance against a line number means, the competitor didn't get that far? All that is needed is for all of a section's Observers to be made aware of when a new competitor is in section....?  Just a thought, certainly for night-time Sections?

Offline Paul Wheatley

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Re: Illuminated Rear Number Boards
« Reply #13 on: May 08, 2019, 02:35:52 pm »
The observers' instructions are to put two vehicles on a section where possible, to avoid undue delay. If a vehicle is out of sight of the observers further up (by no means unusual) and stops or foots further down, how would that be recorded without the lower observer including the competitor's number? Not all sections have radio comms between observers and in effect, on a long section, each observer is running his/her own section. At Hackmarsh there were only three observers including the start and finish. Ideally we should have had two or three more. I'm sure a few bike riders got in a "crafty foot down" and got away with it because there was a fortunate gap in coverage of observers.
PW.