Rfish RFID Wristband

Lacking the courage to implant an RFID, I’ve been looking for a sort of bracelet suitable for swimmers. According to the spec, the ID-12 reader reads EM4001 compatible 125 kHz RFIDs. Google brought up a ton of RFID suppliers, but most of the form factors on offer didn’t look very robust.

The Smart-Wrist tag by Smart-Tec might be an elegant solution as it could be attached to the locker-key bracelet which you get at many pools. However, the German producer did not even bother to write back after I painstakingly filled out their contact form.

Fortunately, there is a pretty well-suited wristband from Daily RFID in China. They seem to sell their product in big quantities ($0.73 per piece for 1000 pieces) but you can ask them for an engineering sample ($15.00 for 5 pieces). Their staff is very friendly and helpful and they accept payment via PayPal.

RFID Wristband

A few days after my order the sample arrived (yesterday) and the first impression is pretty good. The RFID wristbands feel soft and the Rfish reader prototype reads them without a problem. While it perfectly fits my wrist, the fixed size could be a slight disadvantage for skinny people. And it remains to be seen how the material and my skin looks after using the bracelet for a while in the pool.


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6 Responses to “Rfish RFID Wristband”

  1. Home exchange Says:

    I like the photo! The band looks nice and soft and squidy! Very informative blog btw. :)

  2. tamberg Says:


  3. Bruce Folkedahl Says:

    What is the distance that the RFID may be read from? Would this setup be appropriate for a club swim meet?


  4. Chris Moore Says:

    Is this distance limited by the reader, or the RFID, or both?

    I’m assuming the “chip” I wear when I run a triathlon is an RFID, and it’s water-proof, and the reader is a large “mat” that everyone runs over. I believe the system is by “Champion-chip”.

    I’ve been looking for a system like yours, but with a readout of laps on the waterproof reader (an LED?), a reader distance of about a meter so the device can sit at the edge of the pool and detect the swimmer.

    Do you think this is feasible? I might look into getting a “Stamp”…

  5. tamberg Says:

    Hi Chris,

    the main factor influencing the range is the size of the reader’s antenna. The above RFID is passive (the chip your talking about probably too). A larger antenna requires a different, more expensive reader and more power. You’d need either big batteries or a power cord which could be rater dangerous so close to the water.

    Displaying the lap count should be no problem (either on the reader or on a display connected via Bluetooth).

    While I still think it is feasible to build such a high range system, until now I did not succeed. The additional constraint of keeping the overall cost low could be a reason.


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