DIY Shift Lights and Dashboard
Here I am again with another DIY project for racing sims. It’s very similiar to my previous “DIY Dashboard” project but far easier to get things done.
I’m using a piece of hardware that I found on DealExtreme that has 8 7-segment digits (2×4 display actually), 8 green and blue LEDs and 8 tactile buttons. You can check the display on the link below:
It’s only 7 bucks and you can do a lot of with it. It’s driven by the TM1638 IC. Luckily, a guy called Ricard Batista created a very nice Arduino library to communicate with such IC. Extrememly simple to use and works like a charm. You’ll need this library for the project, so download it from the link below and install to your Arduino library folder:
You can find more documentation about using the TM1638 and Arduino here:
The Arduino source code I’m providing at the end of the post requires you to connect the display to the Arduino like the following:
ERRATA: On the picture above, where it says “STB1″, it’s actually “STB0″
If you have to, you can change the wirings to suit your needs, but then don’t forget to change the TM1638 constructor in the Arduino code to mach the pins.
That’s pretty much it for the handwork. Quite easy, no soldering, no protoboards, few wires.
The next thing to do is to upload the sketch available in the RAR file at the end of the post to your Arduino board and run the C# client, also included in the package.
The C# client is responsible for getting the iRacing API data and send it through serial port to the Arduino. The Arduino firmware than reads the serial port and power the LEDs as needed. I’ve also added a “debug mode” to the C# software so you can test everything without having to launch iRacing. To connect with iRacing, it uses the iRSDKSharp.dll, created by fellow iRacer Scott Przybylski, which is included in the RAR (inside the “bin” folder).
Eveything is open source.
Here you can check a video of the piece working:
The contents of this project is distributed as “donationware”. If you find them useful, please consider doing a small donation.