Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Associate Editor
4/30/15 10:04 a.m.

They say communication is everything in a relationship. The relationship between radios and cars is an old and lasting one, but what about the relationship between a driver and the pit crew?

For people with such a critical partnership, drivers and crewmembers don’t communicate very much while they’re actually working. Crews have tried various types of communication over the years, eventually settling on the tried and true pit board, but are a few lines of text on a tiny sign once every lap really sufficient?

They don’t have to be. Wireless communication, used for everything from talk shows to air traffic control, has become inexpensive and ubiquitous. Professional-quality motorsports radios are now affordable enough that even club racers are using them to gain a competitive edge.

Read the rest of the story

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
4/30/15 10:12 a.m.

There are pretty close to zero club racers left that don't have radios. Most of the chump and lemons guys even have them now.

Before I/we bought a "real" set of radios for our cars we ran an endurance race at the Glen with a Cardo Scala Rider Q2 bluetooth headset and a cell phone. The novelty of answering your phone while racing never really wears off. Putting on someone else's sweaty helmet so you can use the one headset totally does

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Associate Editor
4/30/15 10:48 a.m.

Yeah, a lot has happened in the two years since I wrote this article.

Let me add something that didn't translate into the online article, but did appear in the print magazine: Every band mentioned requires an FCC license, though 99% of racers don't have one. They aren't too hard to get, and the fines are ludicrously high if you don't have one.

Appleseed
Appleseed MegaDork
4/30/15 10:50 a.m.

What? No more giant chalkboard signs saying, "PIT NOW!"

tuna55
tuna55 UltimaDork
4/30/15 11:15 a.m.

The cell phone thing is pretty brilliant. We struggled with this on our team a lot. We lost many many laps because of bad communications.

Where is the car?

Uhhh. guys, it's back at the pits.

!!!!!!!!!

DirtyBird222
DirtyBird222 UltraDork
5/14/15 2:40 p.m.

I'm really at a loss for what to do on our chumpcar setup. We have a cheap GMRS setup but everyone says we'll have issues. I've purchased all this equipment you've listed and again people say we'll have issues. It really seems like the only way is to muster up the cash for a legit system and have that be that.

Tommy how did the Baofengs work?

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
5/14/15 3:00 p.m.
Appleseed wrote: What? No more giant chalkboard signs saying, "PIT NOW!"

They still use pit boards in F1. Sometimes, you just gotta have a fallback.

We had fun on one of our T25 teams. The radio didn't work well in one car, and one of the drivers had a problem. Depending on who was in the car...sometimes we could hear the driver but he couldn't hear us. Sometimes he could hear us but we couldn't hear him. Sometimes nobody could hear anything. To the pit board!

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Associate Editor
5/14/15 4:16 p.m.

They work well, as long as you make sure to program them correctly. They really aren't any different from a cheap "real" radio setup.

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