Race Car

INTRODUCTION TO THE TIMESTOPPER MODEL TS200


The Timestopper Model TS200 (Pat. No. 7,285,035) consists of one compact, hand-held, computerized, timer/display unit together with one start-gate sensor and cable, multiple finish-line sensors (with soft Collision Blocks) each with its own cable, and one power module and cable.   The start-gate sensor is mounted at the head-end of a track to sense the opening of the track start-gate.   The finish-line sensors are mounted in each lane at the finish line.   For each race, the soft Collision Blocks are placed over the finish-line sensors for each car to collide into and propel down the track (adding excitement to a race) when crossing the finish line.


The function of the Timestopper Model TS200 is not only to determine the place-order of racecars, but also to measure their race times.   The Timestopper Model TS200 is designed for Pinewood Derby racecars running on Pinewood Derby tracks.   Race times of each car are measured between the start gate and the finish line and retained along with lane numbers and place positions for display on the included digital display.   Before running another race (resetting the unit or turning the power off and back on again), the user can manually cycle through the results while recording them.   The Timestopper Model TS200 incorporates a precision timing unit for accuracy to one-thousandths of one second (1/1000 second).   It displays race times from 0.001 to 9.999 seconds.   (A typical derby car race-time on a standard 32 feet long track is just under 3 seconds.)   By readying the start gate, by positioning the supplied Collision Blocks over the finish sensors, and by leaving the power on and pressing and holding the pushbutton for at least 2 seconds (or by turning the timer/display unit off and back on again), the Timestopper Model TS200 is reset and made ready to time the next race.


The start and stop sensors are miniature, electronic, photo-optic switches.   They are selected to avoid significant timing errors otherwise caused by lack of precise repeatability in mechanical switches.   These photo-optic sensors are designed to easily attach to your track.


The start sensor is mounted to the underside of the track next to the track start gate.   The track start gate on a standard track is a hinged bar, usually made of wood with wood dowels to obstruct the descent of the cars until the track operator rotates the bar.   A small metal "flag" is provided with the Timestopper Model TS200 to be mounted to this hinged bar.   As the hinged bar is rotated to release the cars in beginning a race, this flag, mounted to the bar, moves out of the slot of the start sensor, signaling to the timer/display unit that the race has begun.   The start sensor is equipped with the longer cable in order to allow the timer/display unit to be located near the finish line.


Each finish sensor is easily installed into a 7/16" diameter hole in a lane at the finish line of your track (older units required a slot across each guide-rail) and, along with the supplied Collision Blocks, provides for precise timing of the arrival of a car.   Due to the design of the finish sensors, no damage occurs to the cars upon crossing the finish line.


The timer/display unit of the Timestopper Model TS200 includes a microprocessor and and a liquid-crystal display (LCD).   Although the Timestopper Model TS200 can be powered from a single 9-volt battery, given the proper connector plug, an AC-DC power module is provided instead to eliminate any need for a battery.


Warranty on any Timestopper unit is 90 days from the factory shipment date.