Simetik K2 cockpit review

Aaron Thorp wrote a huge review about his last acquisition; a simracing cockpit by Simetik. This portuguese company has arrived not long ago but its product, K2 seems a very well finished one.

The Simetik K2 is a sim-racing “cockpit” that simulates production-based race cars and GT cars. Available at:
http://simetik-cockpits.myshopify.com/

SUMMARY: I found the Simetik K2 to be very adjustable, incredibly heavy-duty and easy to modify. It is possible to exactly replicate the position of pedals, wheel and seat of a wide variety of real-life production based race cars, and to get the shifter acceptably close. The only faults I can find are that the optional monitor support cannot place the screens close enough to the driver over the top of the wheel, and that the pedal box is narrower than a production-based race car. In every other way this cockpit is a sweetheart and I recommend it. Current pricing is $392 shipped to the US for the cockpit (that’s without a seat, I bought a direct bolt-on seat for $150, see below).

Attached are pictures of a driver that is 5’4” tall and one that is 6’0” tall. Both felt very comfortable. I’d say that the cockpit would easily adjust to fit almost anyone between 5’ and about 6’2”. Drivers taller than 6’2” should likely contact Simetik for a modified (longer) frame.

I use MPPC floor-mounted GT style pedals, a T500RS wheel, a Fanatec CS SQ shifter, a rift headset and a single 27” monitor. I bought the cockpit, shifted mount and a single monitor mount. I’ve no affiliation with Simetik. I’ve exchanged numerous e-mails with the owner Nuno because I’m a picky customer, and I will say that he is both easy to work with and seems like a really nice guy.

ADJUSTABLE: I was easily able to replicate the exact positions of the wheel, pedals and seat of Miata and E36 M3 race cars and several street cars.

I was able to position the shifter longitudinally correctly for both cars and at the correct height, although the shifter was 1” – 2” laterally closer to the wheel than real life in both cases. The shifter could be moved farther out at the expense of some stability. The range of adjustment is truly excellent, with the wheel having independent height and front/back adjustments and the shifter mount having a wide range of adjustment.

Adjusting the wheel is done with two sets of plastic knobs. It is easy to move forward and back and fairly easy to move up and down. The knobs can be replaced with standard bolts if you want to really torque them down very tight. The shifter adjusts with wrenches, but exact positioning is possible and still fairly quick.

The pedal plate can adjust for angle of the pedal plate down to completely flat, but is otherwise non-adjustable. I do not find this to be an issue since you can adjust both the wheel and the seat (assuming you use a seat with sliders).

STURDY: Some folks want a frame that produces zero movement in any direction under any circumstances, including sideways forces that don’t occur during driving: they should keep shopping. Everyone else will find the K2 very sturdy.

Everything is made of very heavy gauge steel. Even at full extension, the wheel mount is more than sturdy enough for my Thrustmaster wheel. The closer to the frame that the wheel plate is mounted the sturdier it is- when in very close it is difficult to generate any movement at all.

The pedal plate is thick and solid, my pedals produce no perceptible movement in the frame. I can push hard enough on the pedals to make the back of my seat creak without affect on the frame.

The shifter support at full extension, although it is pretty much hanging many inches off the frame, has no longitudinal movement and little enough lateral movement that it does not cross my mind when I’m driving. I did have one friend who produced significant lateral movement in the shifter by banging the shifter hard left and right while shifting. (I decided on the spot that he was not allowed to drive my real life car!)

SEAT: Simetik does not currently sell seats, and overseas shipping of a seat is prohibitively expensive anyway.

I used an IPC ATR ‘race’ seat with included sliders, readily available in the US from pep boys for $150 shipped. The sliders bolted directly to existing mounting holes in the K2. This is a low-quality automotive seat on standard sliders & the seat back reclines. I’d not use it in a real car, but I think it is perfectly suitable for sim-racing, and I have found it reasonably comfortable for long sessions.

I have also read on the forum that the widely available Sparco R100 ($300) is a direct bolt-on if Sparco sliders ($85) are used; I have reviewed the mounting dimensions and it does look like that’s true. I’m sure the Sparco is a much nicer seat. I’ve found that mounting any seat to sliders and then to a frame requires some patience, true in real cars and also for the K2.

Replicating a junior formula car like the Skip Barber is perfectly do-able with a different (lower) seat choice, like perhaps the “JEGS pro high back seat”, and by using some spacers under your pedals to increase the height. If you are looking for true F1 seating with the pedals at hip height, this is not the right cockpit for you.

DESIGN & MODIFICATION: Simetik’s simple, elegant design is just great. It was very easy to assemble. Everything is made up of square sections and flat panels, and there is multiple mounting points for everything, which makes modification easy.

Unlike cockpits made of steel tubes, which are very hard to add to or change, adding to or changing the K2 is trivially easy even for those with little skill. For example, I added a hook to hang my headset (coat hook bolted through existing spare hole on side), and hard-mounted my rift sensor (drilled a hole through the sensor base and bolted through an existing spare hole on monitor mount). The materials are so heavy duty that even cutting away portions leaves things very sturdy. For example, I used a dremel to cut away part of the shifter mounting plate so I could mount my shifter very low and still allow clearance for the rear cable. Similarly, I wanted to be able to move the wheel much closer to the pedals so my 6 year old daughter could drive, so I cut away a bit of the wheel mounting plate and just reversed it. Neither modification affected the stability of the mounting in any way.

I really appreciate the way Simetik’s elegant design combines with their use of sturdy, simple materials and connectors to produce a product that a customer can easily “tinker” with and modify to suit a sim-racer’s individual tastes.

DRAWBACKS:
(1) Monitor Mount: If you use monitors AND want them to be as close to you as possible, you should not order the optional monitor mounts for the K2. See pictures online for reference. I originally mounted my triple 27s on 3 single monitor arms (Mount It! MI-751, $26 each on Amazon) which in turn mounted to a simple frame of 2x4s that I put together with cordless tools in an afternoon. I found the 2×4 frame did not need to be particularly stable because it was free-standing and remained untouched in use. The K2 slid into this arrangement beautifully and it was perfect.

(2) Width: I wish the pedal box was about 3 inches wider. The pedal box is a lot roomier than say, a Skip Barber car, but with the 3 wide pedals of the MPPC there is not quite enough room left over to add a “dead pedal” to rest my left foot. Of course, this would have the drawback of making the nice small footprint of the rig that much larger.

(3) Sturdy but not infinitely so: This cockpit is really very sturdy, and I am confident it beats anything near its price point and small footprint by a mile. For those that insist everything be 100% motionless, the K2 may fall short (as will any relatively small cockpit).

CONCLUSION: The 3 drawbacks listed above are quibbles- this cockpit is fantastic. When the price and small footprint of the rig are taken into account, I believe this cockpit to be one of the best on the market and worth a serious look from anyone considering a cockpit.

Pictures of adjust-ability: 2 drivers 6 feet (1.83m) tall and 5’4″ (1.63m)

Here more images and final thoughts from another customer:

6 frame contact points placed on wooden blocks to prevent damage to the floor. Once I get some bass shakers, I’ll replace these with isolators. Included in the package was a sticker with my name (whited out) and nationality on it – nice little addition! All cables were cable tied onto the far side of the frame – it looks much better than letting them dangle. Only real downside for me is that the G27 wheel is only fixed on by two bolts horizontally. This means if you’re rough, the front of the wheel can lift up. This hardly happens and I don’t plan on keeping the G27 for too much longer anyway. All in all, it’s a sturdy beast, yet very adjustable. You can see how the wheel can be moved up/down and forward/back, as well as extending the length of the frame itself if you don’t have a seat with runners, or need the extra fine-tuning. For £300 all-in, I’d recommend it. P.s. If you’re wondering where the monitor mounts are, I didn’t order any as I’m using the Rift exclusively on this thing.

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