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Derek Speare
24 December 10, 20:56
Hi folks:

There’s been quite a bit of discussion regarding the topic of load cell/pressure based braking systems for our various wheels. I really knew very little of the subject, but I set out to learn and to educate myself on this topic to see if I could use and benefit from this type of braking control mechanism. I have gotten quite a bit of education, but it wasn’t easy as the information is very much spread out. It’s my desire to summarize the various systems here in one central location.

As it stands, the PC racer must interpret certain visual, tactile and audible cues received from the sim and translate those messages into meaningful mental information in an effort to drive his car to the optimum. Most of us, the vast majority, do not have the force of gravity acting on our bodies in the sim, so our other senses must be at a heightened state of attenuation to compensate. Gravity, actually, is such a major factor, that we tend to overlook the value it has is much of our racing endeavors. Braking is certainly a major factor which implicates gravity, and the fact that we lack this feedback sense, means we must pay that much more attention to how we brake.

Moreover, the present state of retail and mainstream PC racing wheels and pedals do not help. While there are great products to be had, all still utilize a braking pedal that simply converts the pedal's angular position into “braking force”. This is not how it is in a real car, as we know, and although our “stock” pedals for braking are adequate, there are better options. Better options use pedal pressure, measured through a load cell or other pressure sensor, for the transmission of braking force and simultaneously give the racer a more realistic pedal sensation and greater amount of vehicle control. Obviously, the end desire is to have a greater sense of immersion , and in my opinion, and others, the alternatives to the “Plain Jane” pedals would bring that into reality.

As it stands, the following options are available to the PC racer:

Fanatac’s Club Sport Pedal System:

http://www.fanatec.de/html/index.php?id=293

The “Perfect Pedal”:

http://sim-sport.net/the_perfect_pedal.html

AP Electrix Pedal:

http://www.apelectrix.com/index.html

Cannon Simulation Technologies:

http://www.cannonsimulationtechnologies.com/pedal-feature-pics.htm

Frex:

http://frex.xsrv.jp/gpshop/catalog/default.php?cPath=1_22_30

DIY Solutions:

http://www.hux.net.au/?p=89

http://www.nakka-rocketry.net/strainlc.html#Excel

http://www.jamesyawn.com/electronicstand/amp/board2.html

Leo Bodnar Load Cell Amp:

http://www.leobodnar.com/products/LC-amp/

Essentially this list will give you some greater amount of information about pressure/load cell braking options in a central location. I have literally scoured the internet and this is most of what I found. I know there are a couple of omissions, and I have them in my notes, so the others should follow when I dig them up. I hope you find this information useful , and if you have other solutions, please post them. The list should be updated as necessary. Lastly, I found some of this information here on nogrip and many members right here give me valuable direction. That help is very much appreciated!

Cheers!

Derek

EDIT - Here are some new finds, and these are really something!

http://www.motopc.de/index.html (site's in German)

http://www.drivingitalia.net/articoli.php?sez=hardware&id=77v (this one is in Italian)

phntomF16
24 December 10, 21:36
DeeMoNay,

If I may, I would like to add to your list:

ECCI Trackstar 6000 Pedals (http://ecci6000.com/6000_pedal_01.htm)

http://i244.photobucket.com/albums/gg5/phntomf16/Bema/ECCITrackstar6000Pedals.jpg

Virtual Performance Parts HyperReal 3 Evo III (http://www.lm-vertrieb.de/cat/product_info.php?products_id=60&osCsid=35a6558583b6f29b098cdfead4d5ae88) No longer available.

http://i244.photobucket.com/albums/gg5/phntomf16/Bema/VPPEvoIIIPicture.jpg
Cheers

Derek Speare
24 December 10, 21:57
Thanks phntomF16 ;)

I remembered the ECCI pedals, but couldn't find the link. The HyperReals I've seen, but I didn't know if they use a load cell. Do you know?

d

phntomF16
25 December 10, 00:24
I haven't experienced the HyperReal pedals firsthand, but the resistance components attached to the red-colored braces behind the pedals are shaped like coilover shock absorbers. It looks like the black coil springs mount over a damper cylinder that may offer the type of pressure resistance we're looking for.

From the website:


brake with fully progressive spring tension
preloading of spring-tension adjustable
pedal-travel and -rake is adjustable

Derek Speare
25 December 10, 03:55
They even indicate that the clutch pedal has realistic slipping behavior. I will post in another thread soon my thoughts on full FFB where the clutch, brake, shifter, wheel and even throttle have their own, unique FFB channels. The HyperReal pedal looks like the only pedal with fast and slow bump settings! It's a great find.

Stigasawus
25 December 10, 22:47
Great work DeeMoNay. Certainly makes life easier when everyone does'nt have to re-invent the wheel individually because they can see its been done.
Slipping clutches now, you certainly are a sucker for punishment, sounds like another whole new can of worms to be opened there, along with axle tramp & stability control for motion sims....just kidding!
When does your book come out?

Stigasawus
25 December 10, 22:52
Actually, may I be bold enough to suggest, if this were a sticky it may save the whole thing being done again in another 20 threads when it gets off the front page & the latest & greatest would be just updates.

Derek Speare
26 December 10, 01:37
Great work DeeMoNay. Certainly makes life easier when everyone does'nt have to re-invent the wheel individually because they can see its been done.
Slipping clutches now, you certainly are a sucker for punishment, sounds like another whole new can of worms to be opened there, along with axle tramp & stability control for motion sims....just kidding!
When does your book come out?

Force feedback is an interesting and neglected, IMHO, area of gaming. I understand that mass marketers and manufacturers want to have big numbers, and that some ideas are just not sensible to the bottom line. However, it appears that it's an unexplored area of gaming interface technology.

And I like your other suggestion, too ;)

phntomF16
6 January 11, 03:07
Dicecroup posted a very good review of the Cannon Simulation Technologies pedals over at North American GP (http://www.northamericangp.com/board/showthread.php?p=56647&posted=1#post56647). Maybe he would be willing to share it here, too?

Dicecroup
6 January 11, 06:18
Dicecroup posted a very good review of the Cannon Simulation Technologies pedals over at North American GP (http://www.northamericangp.com/board/showthread.php?p=56647&posted=1#post56647). Maybe he would be willing to share it here, too?

http://www.nogripracing.com/forum/showthread.php?t=236589

Already done.

Dice.

Derek Speare
11 January 11, 03:25
http://www.nogripracing.com/forum/showthread.php?t=236589

Already done.

Dice.

Thank you :)

Derek

EDIT - here's one I found over at the iRacing forums where a guy used a real automotive master cylinder and caliper to compress a load cell:

http://www.varjanta.com/forum/hydraulic-brake-pedal-handmade-t1808.html

conticreative
11 January 11, 03:33
Just a thought: how difficult would be to source the components for building your own hydraulic brake pedal?

What type of load cell is needed? I think as far as the rest of the components, a trip to the salvage yard will produce some pretty nice parts one could use.
in fact, one could cut the entire pedal area of a real car and keep all the pedal mounts, then build some pot based interface for clutch and gas while keeping much of the brake system around, including drum or disk brake pads.

But since no one has tried yet, I guess it's more complex than that.

Derek Speare
11 January 11, 13:51
Hi conticreative,

That's what I referenced in post number 11 to this thread. A guy used an actual automotive master cylinder and caliper to compress a load cell. I saw another reference in the iRacing forums where a guy used a motorcycle master cylinder/caliper to do it, and I got to thinking that one could even use a bicycle brake!

But in any event, for hydraulically actuated system, one would have to use a load cell rated many time higher than the 70# ones in present use. An automotive braking system would require something around 700#.

Progressive resistance is all we're looking for. I'm an advocate of progressively resistive electromechanical system. It's the most simple solution.

d

stagman
12 January 11, 20:58
As I wrote in the other thread, I have a brake master and caliper in my setup.
A load cell may have been an option but I didn't feel like spending the money for one and wasn't sure it could take the punishment.
I really wanted to stick an oil pressure sensor in the line but never found one of the right rating for a cheap price. Measured the line pressure under heavy braking and found that it was around 150bar if not more.

Derek Speare
25 January 11, 15:28
A couple of new systems have been added to the OP :)

WildBill
18 December 11, 00:10
Those coil-over shocks look like they are off a mountain bike in the HyperReals.