First Wheel for Realistic Road Race Training?

Discussion in 'Sim Racing Hardware' started by WaWaZat, Jun 12, 2018.

  1. WaWaZat


    Hey all!

    I am going to be learning how to drive in order to complete in road race competitions. In addition to driving school courses I may start up with next year, I would like to get in to a simulator right away. I’m looking for advice on the equipment and hoping you guys can help! I’d like to start out with a fairly basic, yet effective system, then perhaps upgrade as I get more in to it.

    It seems that the iRacing platform may be what I may be seeking for it's realism and inclusion of my local tracks, such as Road America.... I am in the Chicago area.

    As I said, my focus will be on road racing. At the real track, I may start out with my street 1992 NA Miata. I have a desperate infatuation with old sport cars, so I may eventually transition in to vintage car racing. In either case, we’re talking about emulating these manual shift cars.

    So what wheel/pedal/shifter would be a best start to emulate this type of racing with these types of cars, but that doesn't include anything I don't need? I'm not sure I should care about paddle shifts, digital dash; rally wheels, etc.

    So to sum up the hardware advice I'm looking for... are there good choices that will give realistic feel on a reasonable budget? I'm not interested in Rally, F1, etc..... just road racing. And again.... I'm only interested in this system for driving training, as opposed the gaming aspects.
  2. RobertR1


    Budget will be the first question.

    Direct drive wheels are the best you can get for realism
    Then it's about hydraulic pedals
    VR is a lot more realistic than a flat screen but requires a high end PC also
    Then vibrations
    Then motion

    You can start off with a used Fanatec setup and get going but here's an unpopular opinion on a sim racing site.

    If your goal is road racing, get a 2 stroke kart and do outdoor karting. You'll learn a full set of skills without limitations that can transfer to any vehicle. You'd have to spend a *lot* of money on a sim rig setup. If you've never done outdoor 2 stroke karting, it's miles better than the junk you get at indoor places on slick tracks.

    If you still end up with the sim route, avoid one thing. Don't download setups to go faster. That's not how it works in real life. Most cars, even race cars, don't have pretty sliders for traction control, stability control, ride height and all the plethora of adjustments you get in a game. In real life, you will have the chance to play with tire temps using tire pressure, tire wear with alignment and depending on the race car at brake bias, ride height, damper and aero adjustments, all manually. That's really it.

    So stick to driving the cars as stock, make minimal changes and work on your driving. But really, ignore all that, get a 2 stroke kart and go karting. You'll be way better off.
  3. WaWaZat


    Thanx for all the advice!

    Point taken on your karting suggestion, but the idea of having a sim is to squeeze an hour or 2 of practice in here and there, way more often than I can make it even to a karting track. I’m hoping to set up a sim that is realistic enough where the experience on it will help improve my real track skills.

    For budget, I originally thought under a grand but I see now where it’s possible I might have to double or even triple that to get in to a system that would be worthwhile for my intended purpose.

    That said, my brother might be able to help me with a donation of one of his old professional graphic design computers. I’ve given him the min specs for iRacing and he is checking what this computer has. So I’m speculating that would be free to whatever the cost of an upgraded video card would be.

    Then, I found someone trying to sell this rig for $700 plus shipping.....

    “I'm selling my old rig along with my wheel and pedals. It's a Next Level Racing GTultimate V2, Thrustmaster T500 with GT steering wheel and Fanatec Clubsport V2 pedals. The rig comes with triple monitor stands, keyboard tray and desktop. The seat will fit someone from the big & tall section (up to 6'5") and it reclines. New, everything is about $1500+. Asking $700 obo for everything. All you need is a PC and monitor(s).”

    I have attached the pic he has sent.

    Not having ever really experienced any true to life sim systems..... can I get some advice on if the components in this system would be good for real racecar training?

    I’ve heard pros & cons on the Next Level stuff. Does anyone know if this cockpit would be rigid enough and hold the wheel and pedals firmly for the kind of training I’m looking to do?

    How is the Thrustmaster wheel and Fanatech Clubsport V2 pedals for a realistic experience?

    Is there anything you that wears out on any of this stuff that I should ask the seller about? He is 1500 miles away from me so I have to try to vet this system without being able to see or try 1st.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2018
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