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BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
4/13/15 12:05 p.m.

I just attended my first Auto-X ever yesterday (yes, it was fun - write up to follow) and try to capture some data and video using Harry's Lap Timer on my OnePlus One.

I'm currently using a universal RAM mount with a short arm and a suction cup on the rear window of the MR2 which worked OK at Thunderhill, but the small bumps on the Auto-X surface yesterday made the phone bump around like I was riding a jackhammer down the course. IOW, the video is completely unusable as is.

Does anybody have a recommendation for a good, stable smartphone mount that I can suction cup either to the windshield (which would be good as that would be less fiddly than having to mount the phone with the camera facing forward every time before a run) or the rear window?

I guess the alternative would be to use HLT to just drive my GoPro, but I like the idea of having more than one source of video if possible.

trucke HalfDork
4/13/15 1:08 p.m.

Selfie stick?

Seriously, I would like to know what works with an iPhone.

BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
4/13/15 1:10 p.m.

Yebbut, the passenger adds unnecessary weight .

drummerfromdefleopard SuperDork
4/13/15 1:11 p.m.

I came to suggest a RAM mount, but as that didn't measure up to the task I'm now watching with interest.

ProDarwin UberDork
4/13/15 1:17 p.m.

I've used this http://www.snapmount.com/ + a suction cup camera mount and it works well. You situation sounds more extreme... surprised a RAM didn't work.

BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
4/13/15 1:24 p.m.

The RAM mount itself did exactly what it's supposed to do, namely hold the phone in place.

The problem is that the arm seems to amplify movement and vibration (I've had similar problems when mounting a GPS to the motorcycle with this arm and a GPS-specific mount) and I think it's made worse by having the whole thing stretched out straight.

I may try mounting the suction cup on the roof with a longer arm straight up and the phone mounted at 90° angle, maybe that will help.

Of course having the phone mounted outside the car also massively increases its chance to fly off into the sunset .

stanger_missle GRM+ Memberand Dork
4/13/15 2:39 p.m.

I use a SlipGrip and an Arkon 17mm ball aluminum motorcycle handlebar mount in my Wrangler. I have it mounted to my JKE Dock from Vector Offroad. It is rock solid.



I had the same issue before. The phone grip part was solid but the plastic arm that it mounted to bounced all over the place on anything other than smooth pavement. The Arkon ball mount is all aluminum and does not flex at all. The JKE dock is 1" hollow steel tube mounted to the dash substructure and is solid.

Is there a way to fab a bracket to mount the phone mount to the dash? Or to the headliner? Maybe on the headrest posts? I think you won't be able to find a sunction cup mount that won't have a little movement when the phone is mounted just due the way the sunction mounts are constucted.

thewheelman New Reader
4/13/15 3:52 p.m.

It sounds like if you added a little tension to the RAM mount, you'd solve the vibration issue. Is there a clothes hook, seat belt mount, or LATCH anchor nearby that a bungee cord could be attached to?

I had this issue with a headrest mount for a Sony camera I used to record my autocross runs. The passenger seatback shook a lot, and made for terrible video. The solution was to lean the seat back a little, lock the passenger seat belt, and then lean the seat back up to put tension on the belt. Same idea I used to lock my driver's seat belt before a run. The video was perfect after that (aside from my driving and the wind noise picked up by the mic...).

Edit...is this for the 996, or one of your other vehicles?

BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
4/13/15 5:00 p.m.

It's for the MR2 - the 996 is, err, more comfortable in the shop than out on the street, let alone on an autocross course.

I have two clothes hooks I can use, plus I should probably get a shorter arm for the RAM mount. As stanger_missile above mentioned, the problem seems to be more related to using a single suction cup mount than the arm itself so preloading the suction cup mount might help.

oldopelguy SuperDork
4/13/15 9:56 p.m.

Spend $35 for the ProClip mount specific to the car and then either mount your Ram mount to it or pony up the other $35 for the ProClip phone mount for your phone. First accessory I get for every new car.

Or for more generic if you don't live in SD you can get the ram mirror mount bracket that mounts between the rear view mirror and the windshield.


GameboyRMH GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/14/15 9:01 a.m.

I don't know how stable it would be for video, but a regular windshield suction cup mount with a flexible shaft going to the phone clamp worked pretty well for me back when I used an old Palm PDA for offroad navigation. I tried a similar mount with a solid jointed shaft and it broke on the first event. Keep in mind that stiffer means more vibration will be transmitted.

bearmtnmartin GRM+ Memberand Dork
4/16/15 12:07 a.m.

I have ziptied my phone to the hoop crossbar with good results. Also very easy to turn on and off.

BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
2/21/16 11:21 a.m.

It looks I (finally) found a partial answer to this issue when digging through Harry's Laptimer forums, so I'm resurrecting the thread.

Turns out that RAM makes two kinds of arms - composite ones (which is the one I had) and aluminum ones. According to a post on the above mentioned forum, the composite ones don't provide a stable base for a phone, especially not something as heavy as an iPhone 6 Plus.

Based on that, I got an aluminium arm and phone specific mount, and the phone is much more stable that it used to be. The aluminium arm is considerably heavier than the composite one and that does seem enough to dampen normal vibration. Haven't got any footage yet and it's not going to fix the main issue mentioned in my first post (phone bounce when hitting the wide expansion joints on our local Auto-X site) but it should massively improve the video quality on track. Just throwing it out there if someone else is also running into this issue.

ShinnyGroove Reader
9/16/19 3:57 p.m.

Necro-post.  I have the same challenge as Boxhead Tim, TrackAddicts + RaceRender work great but the Iphone jiggles around like crazy and the video is garbage.  I'm using the RAM suction cup, the aluminum arm described above, and the RAM mount cradle holder with my Iphone X.  I suspect that the phone holder itself is the main culprit, it's pretty flimsy.


Anyone have a mounting solution they like?  Video for reference... no need to comment on the bad driving (unless it's funny then we can all have a laugh).


BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/16/19 4:28 p.m.

In reply to ShinnyGroove :

Are you using the X-Grip holder? I've not been that happy with mine and wouldn't be surprised if that was the main problem.

When I wrote the original post I think I still had an iPhone 6 and the exact fit cradle that RAM made at that point. That did make a massive difference.

ShinnyGroove Reader
9/16/19 9:22 p.m.

Yes, X-Grip.  Didn’t know they made an exact fit option- need to look that up.  Thanks

_ HalfDork
9/16/19 11:32 p.m.

I use my mob armor mount for my iPhone with My obd2 app. Works great.  For cameras, I mount to my roll bar and my windshield suction cup mount. 

pontiacstogo New Reader
9/17/19 6:32 a.m.

Is the stablize option on in the TrackAddict app?

therieldeal Reader
9/17/19 7:37 a.m.

I was planning to screw one of these right to the dash eventually, not sure if that's an option for you with this vehicle.


Patientzero GRM+ Memberand Reader
9/17/19 7:43 a.m.

Right now I'm using a double suction cup Fat Gecko and a cheap phone mount from Amazon that is actually made out of aluminum and I'm very happy with.  I'm using this on the inside of the windshield looking out with the RaceChrono app and a Garmin GLO 2 GPS unit. 






BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/17/19 8:19 a.m.
ShinnyGroove said:

Yes, X-Grip.  Didn’t know they made an exact fit option- need to look that up.  Thanks

They used for some of the older phones, but I haven’t seen them for the newer ones. 

ddavidv PowerDork
9/17/19 8:47 a.m.

May or may not be helpful depending on what you want to use your phone for.

I use mine for lap timing on actual tracks. Video is handled by a GoPro so where it gets mounted isn't important to me. On my E30 I used two zip ties on the back deck. Keep them just loose enough that you can slide the phone into the ties. Holds it in place just fine. No problem keeping satellite signal with it there BUT it did get really hot under the non-tinted window.

In the M3 I moved it to the dash, again zip ties just hanging out of the dash vents with enough 'play' to slide the phone in. This is better because it stays cool and I can actually see it while driving...but am also easily distracted by it. For myself I almost prefer not being able to see my laps in real time but YMMV.

The zip tie method allows you to place it anywhere. FWIW I don't run a power cable to it, just recharge it between sessions in my truck.

BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/17/19 9:19 a.m.
therieldeal said:

I was planning to screw one of these right to the dash eventually, not sure if that's an option for you with this vehicle.


IME the problems are usually with the arm and the phone mount. The suction cup mount to the window is usually strong enough, it's the amplification of vibration et al that you get from the phone bouncing around at the end of a lever that is usually the issue.

ShinnyGroove Reader
9/17/19 10:41 a.m.

I use my phone for both video and data logging with the TrackAddicts app and a Garmin GLO2 bluetooth GPS receiver.  It works out really well because the app embeds the data into the .mov file, then when you open the file on the computer in RaceRender it's easy to overlay the data onto the video.  The data seems dead accurate since I got the Garmin GPS.  The video I posted above was done this way.  I had been looking at the AiM data logging and video systems, but this setup gives me 90% of what I would want from one for 10% of the cost and 10% of the fuss.

I found this yesterday on Thingiverse and 3d printed it in ABS last night. 

It screws into the windshield frame where the sun visor used to mount on my Miata.  I also ordered the RAM phone-specific cradle for my Iphone XS.  Hopeful this solves my issues.

Patientzero GRM+ Memberand Reader
9/17/19 10:51 a.m.

In reply to ShinnyGroove :

What infil %?

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