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What racing gear do you use while sim racing?

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Load Cell or Hydraulic Brakes

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Ok so getting ready to purchase a high end set of pedals and set of budget of $1500 USD for a set. With that said their are a lot of high end pedals out there but trying to decide I want to go with a load cell type pedal like the simworx or huesinkveld pedals or try and find a hydraulic brand like HPP or BJ sim pedals.. Any advice or experience would be greatly appreciated
 
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Ok so getting ready to purchase a high end set of pedals and set of budget of $1500 USD for a set. With that said their are a lot of high end pedals out there but trying to decide I want to go with a load cell type pedal like the simworx or huesinkveld pedals or try and find a hydraulic brand like HPP or BJ sim pedals.. Any advice or experience would be greatly appreciated
SIMTAG
 
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Personally I have tried both but I own Heusinkveld Ultimates, with the primary reason is both types felt great but I didn't want the hassle in case the Hydraulic brakes had an issue and made a mess.

In my view, if you really want Hydraulics, then go for it.

Having said that, there are lots of discussion on this in the iRacing forums. I've copy and pasted a response from a manufacturer of high-end load cell pedals (who you can imagine has a vested commercial interest):

"...you try to compare hydraulics (which is a damping system) to a load cell (which is a sensor).

The sensor type is not a detemining factor in how pedals feel, that is determined by the pedal geometry, the springs (coil springs, rubbers) and the presence (or lack) of hydraulic damping. And then the spec of those individual parts.

On load cell pedals, the pedal arm compresses rubbers which in turn puts pressure on a sensor.

On (most?) hydraulic pedals, the pedal arm compresses rubbers which in turn puts pressure on hydraulic oil (simplified) which then pressurizes a sensor. Both solutions measure the pressure on the pedal arm.

Both sensors could be replaced by a piece of solid metal and the pedals would feel exactly the same..."


and more from the same high-end load cell manufacturer:


"...I'm no fan of hydraulic brakes.

Sure real brake systems are hydraulic, but the pedal feel depends on the pedal itself, master cylinders, length of tubing, type of tubing, flex of caliper/pad.. Some small some large effects but not the same as attaching a master cylinder and a tube to a pedal.

My progressive rubber 'stack' is not perfect either but is easily adjustable and far more adjustable than hydraulic systems. I can go from 20 to 60mm pedal hardness in a minute by changing some rubbers and washers..."
That last paragraph is wrong imo, as I can do the exact same thing by undoing a nut and sliding a selection of rubbers and spacers I have on my pedals, but in effect yes that is correct, the feel can be made to feel the same
 

RCHeliguy

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The results of my research were that Hydraulic brakes can leak. HPP doesn't have much in the way of support. You can return your product, but that's about it. One thing that came through loud and clear over and over was that Heusinkveld has solid products and great support. I'm still waiting for my pedals to arrive so I have no first hand knowledge yet.
 
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The results of my research were that Hydraulic brakes can leak. HPP doesn't have much in the way of support. You can return your product, but that's about it. One thing that came through loud and clear over and over was that Heusinkveld has solid products and great support. I'm still waiting for my pedals to arrive so I have no first hand knowledge yet.

I've had a pair of HPP PRX pedals for several years now. They've been fantastic, but you're correct that hydraulic pedals can leak. In fact, that happened to me with my HPP pedals and I had to send the hydraulic unit back to be rebuilt.

However, you're incorrect saying that HPP doesn't have much in the way of support. I had an issue with the clutch mechanism on my pedals, as well as the hydraulic leak I've already mentioned. Both of these issues appeared well after the typical one year warranty period, and yet Mark from HPP repaired/replaced both of these components completely free of charge. With the hydraulic brake component, all I had to do was remove it and mail it to him; he even covered return shipping. With the clutch mechanism, he just sent me an updated unit - once again free of charge. Additionally, when I told him I had dropped and lost one of the small screws for adjusting the pedals, he sent me an envelope with 20+ extra screws totally free of charge. Also, when I had calibration issues he gave me his personal phone number so he could talk me over the process in real time. As far as I'm concerned, HPP support is top-notch.
 
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RCHeliguy

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That's good to hear. I've read a couple accounts to the contrary. This is the first account I've heard of good support and it sounds like above and beyond as well. They are beautiful looking pedals and I seriously considered them after watching Gary's review on SRG.
 
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It seems pretty common for people have wide ranging experiences with vendors - just look at Fanatec. I've found that if you don't act like a dickhead then you tend to get pretty good service. Of course, millage may very depending on who you're dealing with...
 

RCHeliguy

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It seems pretty common for people have wide ranging experiences with vendors - just look at Fanatec. I've found that if you don't act like a dickhead then you tend to get pretty good service. Of course, millage may very depending on who you're dealing with...

I've not had an issue with their equipment yet, so I haven't had to put their support to the test. I'm seriously considering a getting a DD2 this summer and I just ordered a McLaren GT3 rim. Even though I have a set of Sprint pedals on order, the CS 3.0 with BPK I've been using over the last 18 months have worked well. I'd just like more adjust-ability and a few other things, but I think the CS 3.0 with BPK is a pretty good bang for the buck.
 
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I think customer service, even within companies can vary wildly depending on who you deal with, and whether you only deal with one person. In my experience, dealing with one person results in a quick and easy resolution, but if you get passed around there is much less care for your case. I have also had situations where I call up and talk to one person, get told to eff off, but call up later and have a lovely customer service rep.
 
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Right on guys thanks for all the feedback. After debating back and forth and also based on availability and also design I took a leap and ordered the Simworx pro pedals. I feel they will work well and the few reviews and reads I have done on them they look like a great pedal setup
 

Andrew_WOT

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People get misled by the idea that if brakes are "hydraulic" they will simulate real brakes better.
Wrong, they both simulate the "feel" trough springs and rubber washers, the only difference if pressure on load cell applied directly or via hydraulic cylinder. In the end they both FEEL the same.
Some more info on that
https://diysim.com/2016/01/simracing-pedals-hydraulic/

Go for one that requires less maintenance.
HE would be my recommendation.

And LOL at Fanatec pedals, really, just another expensive, shiny looking toy.
 
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People get misled by the idea that if brakes are "hydraulic" they will simulate real brakes better.
Wrong, they both simulate the "feel" trough springs and rubber washers, the only difference if pressure on load cell applied directly or via hydraulic cylinder. In the end they both FEEL the same.
Some more info on that
https://diysim.com/2016/01/simracing-pedals-hydraulic/

Go for one that requires less maintenance.
HE would be my recommendation.

And LOL at Fanatec pedals, really, just another expensive, shiny looking toy.
Using a real master cylinder will give the feeling of taking up the slack in the mechanism you get on actual cars, plus hydraulic setups will always give a damping effect which stops the pedal coming flying back up if you take your foot off quickly.
 
Messages
356
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People get misled by the idea that if brakes are "hydraulic" they will simulate real brakes better.
Wrong, they both simulate the "feel" trough springs and rubber washers, the only difference if pressure on load cell applied directly or via hydraulic cylinder. In the end they both FEEL the same.
Some more info on that
https://diysim.com/2016/01/simracing-pedals-hydraulic/

Go for one that requires less maintenance.
HE would be my recommendation.

And LOL at Fanatec pedals, really, just another expensive, shiny looking toy.
I have also tried my DIY solution back to back with the Heusinkveld Pro and Sprints and they both felt very different according to me and 2 others that tried them
 

Andrew_WOT

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Using a real master cylinder will give the feeling of taking up the slack in the mechanism you get on actual cars, plus hydraulic setups will always give a damping effect which stops the pedal coming flying back up if you take your foot off quickly.
You get much better efffect with HE Ultimate that uses hydraulic dampers.
And adding a 'slack' is just a matter of pedals physical adjustment and deadzone tuning in software. And that 'slack' is mostly feature of bad brakes on street cars, race car brakes are different, with small travel, high stiffness, and no play to speak of.
 
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RaceNut

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Some down-sides to the hydraulic systems is with potential for leaks, issues related to seals / plungers and pressure sensors being less reliable (at least with some brands). I think a good load-cell will be less likely to have issues overall but, in either case, quality components are key.
 
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I have copied another forum's post from the founder of HE Pros and Sprints:

"...Most sim pedals, hydraulic or loadcell, get 90% of their feel from compressing rubber bushings though. This is of course very different to a real racing car where you'd hope your tubing, calipers and pads are not made of rubber..

Most sim pedals have a force leverage of perhaps 2:1 or 4:1 depending on their geometry. So 2mm of pedal movement results in 1mm of rubber compression.

Racing cars can have a 100:1 ratio of movement, because you also need to amplify the forces 100:1 to slow down a racing car without superhuman strength.

Once you have a 100:1 movement ratio, it only takes 1mm of flex in the total system consisting of some play / slop, caliper flex, hose expansion and even, yes, fluid compression, to get a 100mm long brake pedal.

So any sim pedal regardless of its sensor type will always be very different to real racing brakes.

However, you can argue that most of this travel in a real race car brake is from elastic expansion / compression, so it mostly acts like a spring, with perhaps a slight damping element.

These are exactly the properties of rubber bushes, mainly spring with a bit of damping. Hence most high end sim pedals, hydraulic or loadcell, use some or other form of rubber for their main 'feel' component.

Real brakes are super variable though, just the combinations of pedal box, type of master cylinders, installation flex, tubing used, caliper flex, pad material.. I bet these can all affect the travel and feel so much! You can install two different combinations of parts in a Formula 3 car and I bet if you were blindfolded you wouldn't believe you were in the same car.

I'm not saying that hydraulic or loadcell are exactly the same, but loadcell and hydraulic sim pedals are much closer related to each other than to real race car pedals.."
I am fully aware of this post, however it doesn't change the fact I felt a significant difference between hydraulic pedals and the Heusinkvelds. The Heusinkvelds do feel right, and are really great pedals, as well as potentially being lower maintainence. Plus the guys at Heusinkveld are great and helped me out with my DIY pedals! It's completely up to opinion as to whether the difference is for better or for worse, but they do feel different in my experience.
 
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