Arduino Datalogger


I'm looking at making my own datalogger for my kart. The parameters I wish to measure are: - Water Temperature - Engine Speed - Lap Time - Brake Pressure - Throttle Position

I want to have a screen which displays the current engine speed (averaged out over a period of 0.5 seconds) and, should the water temperature exceed a predefined value, for the screen to flash red, acting as an alarm.

I also want to have a rechargeable battery as well, if possible.

All the sensors output an analogue voltage; +-10V. The exception is the lap timer, which outputs an electrical pulse when you run over a magnetic strip.

I'd like the data to be written to 2 different .txt or .csv files; 1 for the data, abd the other for lap time.

FYI, I can design and make the case for the arduino, so no need to worry about that.

I was wondering what Arduino hardware would be best for this project?

Thanks In Advance

So that’s 4 analog and 1 digital inputs for sensors, plus an sd card writer and some kind of display.

You need to think more about the display and let us know what would/wouldn’t be suitable. It could be as simple as a 4 digit 7 segment display and a red led for the water temp.

Why the rechargeable battery? Do the carts not have a 12V battery?

Are you sure the sensors output -10V to +10V, that sounds unusual? If they do, you can’t connect them directly to the Arduino inputs without causing damage to the chip. You will need to turn that voltage range to 0V to 5V or perhaps 0V to 1.1V.

Other than that, any basic Arduino should be fine. I would normally recommend Nano 3 for a beginner. As you want to run on batteries (for some reason) a 3.3V Pro Mini could be a good option. Pro Mini does not have a usb-serial chip built in, so a separate one will be needed.


Thanks for the response.

Mine doesn't have a battery; it's direct drive, without a clutch or starter motor etc.

Sorry, I meant 0-10V range. I can change sensors however if required. The 0-10V range sensors happened to be what came with the kart.

I was thinking of a colour display, with a 5 or 6 inch LCD screen? I find it hard to read screens with poor resolution when driving a kart. Having the whole screen flash red would be my choice of alarm as well.

Logging rates of 100Hz would be preferred.


0 to 10V no problem, just need to use voltage dividers (a pair of resistors) to reduce that down to 0-5V or 0-1.1V.

I don't think 100Hz data logging will be a problem, except for one thing....

A 5~6in high resolution colour LCD screen is going to be slow to update for a basic Arduino. Keeping that updated every 0.5s could be a challenge in itself for a 16MHz Arduino. Logging data at 100Hz at the same time is not going to be easy at all.

I don't get your argument that you need high resolution screen for use on a cart. With all the vibration and g-forces going on, I think that resolution would just be wasted, you don't have time or ability to focus on small details on the track. I think the real reason for wanting a screen like that is the wow factor, to impress your carting buddies.

If you look at F1 cars, they don't have hi-res LCD screens, they have led 7-seg displays and individual leds. That's because it's the best type of display for the situation, and therefore more authentic.

It's your project, but I would think carefully about the large LCD idea. If you are certain, I would suggest looking at "Nextion" smart LCD displays. These have their own processor built-in, so the Arduino is not burdened with updating a huge number of pixels. The Arduino just has to send basic data updates and the display's processor does at the hard work, leaving the Arduino free to read sensors and log data.