Introduction: Arduino Drag Race Light Tree

I'm new to Arduino so I was excited to try this out.  I also Drag race 1/24 scale slotcars.  I built a homemade 24' drag strip to practice. I need the tree to be the same as the race track  so my reaction time might  improve.  I'm not sure if I have the timing right, but it's getting close. See the video below.



The Arduino = Arduino UNO purchased at Radio Shack

The Breadboard=  Radio Shack (not necessary, but I already made the prototyping stand.  https://www.instructables.com/id/Acrylic-Arduino-Prototyping-Stand/)

LEDs and jumper wires = you guessed it... Radio Shack

The power source is Altoids charger that supply's 5v to the Arduino board  ( https://www.instructables.com/id/Another-Altoids-Ipod-Charger/)
You can also use a 9v battery with  resistors that are appropriate or use usb from laptop or desk top computer.  

The software I used I downloaded from  http://arduino.cc/en/Main/Software

I understand there are many ways one can do this. I chose to build it this way because this is what I had.  

I connected the jumper wires to the #2,4,6,8,10 pins found on the Arduino board and the long leg of the Led are placed in line with the end of the red jumper wires on the breadboard.
.
The ground pin is located above the #13 pin  (GND) on the Arduino board. 


The Code I wrote is a modified version of the blink example: 

/*
  Blink
  Turns on an LED on for 1 second, then off for 1 second.
 
  This example code is in the public domain.
*/



void setup() {
 
  // initialize the digital pin as an output.
  // Pin 13 has an LED connected on most Arduino boards:
  pinMode(2, OUTPUT);
  pinMode(4, OUTPUT);
  pinMode(6, OUTPUT);
  pinMode(8, OUTPUT);
  pinMode(10, OUTPUT);
}

void loop() {
  digitalWrite(2, HIGH);  // White Led on for 1 second
  delay(1000);            
  digitalWrite(2, LOW);   // LED turns off for 1/2 second  
  delay(500);             
  digitalWrite(4, HIGH);  // Yellow led on 1/2 second   
  delay(500); 
  digitalWrite(4, LOW);   // LED turns off for 1/2 second
  delay(500);  
  digitalWrite(6, HIGH);  // Yellow Led on for 1/2 second
  delay(500);            
  digitalWrite(6, LOW);   // LED turns off for 1/2 second
  delay(500);             
  digitalWrite(8, HIGH);  // Yellow Led on for 1/2 sec 
  delay(500); 
  digitalWrite(8, LOW);   // LED turns off for 1/2 second
  delay(500);
  digitalWrite(10, HIGH);   // Green Led on for 2 seconds
  delay(2000);            
  digitalWrite(10, LOW);   // Green LED turns off for 3 seconds
    delay(3000);
}






As soon as I learn how to move it to it's own board and add a start switch I will put it in a box and mount it permanently.
 

Comments

author
SciE1 made it!(author)2017-03-26

I need something like this for a prototype in a 12VDC application. I want to activate 4 solenoids the same way the yellow lights work and then I want them to activate in reverse. it would be great to be able to control the speed. do you know how to do it?

author
Tom+The+Tech made it!(author)2014-09-26

Can this be scaled up to maybe 1/8 Scale ?

author
biomech75 made it!(author)2012-04-19

and some 220 Ohm too so the leds will last longer.

author
ktrantham made it!(author)2014-08-06

the leds aren't lit for long enough in the code to harm the leds they need extended periods of overcurrent to fry! Cheers

author
Computothought made it!(author)2012-04-24

Super cool. I was going to make one. Had one instructable in progress before I saw this one but deleted it. might go back and work on it again. I wanted lights for both tracks and test for early start.

dsxmastree.png
author
ea422 made it!(author)2012-04-25

That would be great. I am so new to this that I had to start as easy as possible.
I hope you do finish yours so I can learn from it.

author
Computothought made it!(author)2012-04-26

Looks like your doing pretty well.

author
biomech75 made it!(author)2012-04-19

Here is the same code but with some modifications. I have change the timing and adde another white led I have been drag racing almost all of my life (EVOs, Hondas, RX7's) and I think It looks more closer to the real "Tree Light". And I do not want you to think that you are wrong on your instructurable. I just want to help you making the best Tree Light for your practices. ;)
First I add another white led. That one is Pre Stage (Pin 2) and the second one is for the Stage (Pin 3). Then I have change timing in between the leds so here is the code:

/*
Blink
Turns on an LED on for 1 second, then off for 1 second.

This example code is in the public domain.
*/



void setup() {

// initialize the digital pin as an output.
// Pin 13 has an LED connected on most Arduino boards:
pinMode(2, OUTPUT);
pinMode(3, OUTPUT);
pinMode(4, OUTPUT);
pinMode(6, OUTPUT);
pinMode(8, OUTPUT);
pinMode(10, OUTPUT);
}

void loop() {
digitalWrite(2, HIGH); // White Led on for 2 second Pre Stage
delay(2000);
digitalWrite(2, LOW); // LED turns off for 1/2 second
delay(5);
digitalWrite(3, HIGH); // White Led on for 1 second Stage
delay(1000);
digitalWrite(3, LOW); // LED turns off for 1/2 second
delay(5);
digitalWrite(4, HIGH); // Yellow led on 1/2 second
delay(500);
digitalWrite(4, LOW); // LED turns off for 1/2 second
delay(5);
digitalWrite(6, HIGH); // Yellow Led on for 1/2 second
delay(500);
digitalWrite(6, LOW); // LED turns off for 1/2 second
delay(5);
digitalWrite(8, HIGH); // Yellow Led on for 1/2 sec
delay(500);
digitalWrite(8, LOW); // LED turns off for 1/2 second
delay(5);
digitalWrite(10, HIGH); // Green Led on for 5 seconds
delay(5000);
digitalWrite(10, LOW); // Green LED turns off for 5 seconds
delay(5000);
}

ENJOY DRAG RACING

author
ea422 made it!(author)2012-04-19

I will definitely use this and try to figure out the photocell. Eventually I would like to add a stopwatch that starts and stops for each car. I know it can be done, but still way over my head for now. Thanks for your input.

author
biomech75 made it!(author)2012-04-19

for the stop watch you can use an bicycle odometer that can measure time and miles theyre cheaper @ wallmart

author
biomech75 made it!(author)2012-04-19

....And at the finish line install a photocell with another ATtiny Arduino to see who won. you need :
•220-Ohm resistor
•LED
•Photocell
•10k resistor

here is the Sketch:

int photocellPin = 0;// Photocell connected to analog pin 0
int photocellVal = 0; // define photocell variable
int ledPin = 9;// LED connected to digital pin 9
int ledState = 0;//state of the led
int fadeDown = 30;//delay per fade
int fadeUp = 20;//delay per fade
int minLight = 100;//min light threshold
int maxLight = 100;//max light threshold


void setup() {
//Serial.begin(9600);
pinMode(photocellPin, INPUT);
pinMode(ledPin, OUTPUT);
}
void loop() {
photocellVal = analogRead(photocellPin);

if (photocellVal < minLight and ledState == 0){
fadeLed(1);
//Serial.println("fade up");
}
else if (photocellVal > maxLight and ledState == 1){
fadeLed(0);
// Serial.println("fade down");
}



}

void fadeLed(int num){
if (num == 1){
for(int fadeValue = 0 ; fadeValue <= 255; fadeValue +=5) {
analogWrite(ledPin, fadeValue);
delay(fadeUp);
}
ledState = 1;

}
else{
for(int fadeValue = 255 ; fadeValue >= 0; fadeValue -=5) {
analogWrite(ledPin, fadeValue);
delay(fadeDown);
}
ledState = 0;
}


}

photocell .jpg
author
biomech75 made it!(author)2012-04-19

Also you can add the red "foul" light and a photocell for the pre stage and stage lights

author
ea422 made it!(author)2012-04-19

I would like to add the foul light. I am still learning how this works. I'm hoping to use larger lights as well.

author
biomech75 made it!(author)2012-04-19

AND.... for this project If I were you I should buy an ATtiny 45/85 arduino IC so you don't have to sacrifice your regular Arduino and you can continue doing projects. ATtiny is perfect for this project I have tried with that code I have post. ;)

author
biomech75 made it!(author)2012-04-17

The connections are not clear and where is the GND and 5V connection
just a comment but it looks great your project

author
ea422 made it!(author)2012-04-18

Good point! I will update it this evening. Thanks!

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