SimuCUBE Open Sim Wheel Sim Setup Guide

Open Sim Wheel

The SimuCUBE based Open Sim Wheel is one of the best Sim Racing wheels  currently available on the market, but it can definitely be a challenge to set up for the wide variety of different Sim Racing titles available. That is why I wanted to create this quick “Cheat Sheet” for people to be able to help Sim Racers get decent settings for different titles. I hope this is of help to you guys!

In this, I will share both my settings in the SimuCUBE Configuration Tool, as well as my settings in-game. Also, some Sim Racing titles may have settings that need to be adjusted in different text files, so I will give tips for that as well.

DISCLAIMER

When it comes to setting up Force Feedback, it tends to be subjective. What may feel good for me may not feel the best for you. At the very least, I want to point you guys in the right direction, so you can get an idea on how to fine-tune your Force Feedback for your optimal experience.

Also, keep in mind that I am using the Large Mige Open Sim Wheel, which is capable of producing 30Nm of torque. The Small Mige is capable of peaks of 20 Nm, so keep that in mind. If you are using the Small Mige, and want an easy conversion of strength to see what I am using, you can multiply my strength numbers by 1.5.

Explaining Some of the Settings

In addition to some of the main settings that the majority of Sim Racing wheels have (Degrees of rotation, Force Feedback Strength), there are some other settings that can be rather confusing for racers. Let’s see if we can explain some of those, and help point you in the right direction.

Bumpstop Range

Bumpstop Range will either add or subtract from your steering range before you hit resistance.  I have it set in each profile to “-20 degrees”. That is a personal preference for me, because if you set it to 0 degrees, you will feel some resistance around 15 degrees or so before you hit the full lock. I chose to have an extra “20 degrees of deadzone” at each lock, because it felt good for me. It doesn’t add any excess to the steering range, it just adds a bit of deadzone.

SimuCUBE Force Reconstruction Filter

One of the features added to the SimuCUBE system is called the “Force Reconstruction Filter”. What this filter will do will take an incoming Force Feedback signal from a racing title, and “upscale” it into a higher frequency signal, to increase the smoothness and accuracy of the wheel. The downside of the SimuCUBE Reconstruction Filter is that it can add a very slight bit of a latency to the wheel. Personally, I tend to find that I keep the SimuCUBE Force Reconstruction Filter as low as possible, but certain titles felt like they need it.

Torque Bandwidth Limit

Torque Bandwidth Limit is another filter that will filter out higher frequency Force Feedback signals. The reason you may want to do this is to potentially avoid harsh and erratic “peaking” in the FFB signal. The lower the frequency, the “duller” the wheel will feel, due to the high end frequencies being cut out. The Torque Bandwidth limit will also add a little latency as the signal is being reprocessed. Ideally, you would want to set the Torque Bandwidth Limit to “Unlimited”, or as high as you are able to. Some sims may require a lower frequency though.

Peaking and Notch Filter

I’m not really sure how to explain it better than the Granite Devices Wiki, so let’s see what they said: 

“Peaking and Notch Filter
This filter provides specific localized suppression or enhancement to a certain frequency range. Generally used to eliminate unwanted peaks (use notch) or dips (use peak) in the signal that provide unwanted abnormalities wheel reaction. An example would be excessive or extreme oscillation in the wheel.

  • Center Frequency (Hz) – Sets the frequency where the filter is to take effect within the signal. When setting this attribute, it tends be most effective to adjust it while in program as it is so specific in what it will actually affect it is hard to just guess as to what frequency it should be located at.
  • Attenuation – This setting controls how much notch filter will subdue the signal in db. The deeper the notch the wider the frequencies are that are affected and the more dramatically diminished the designated center frequency is. If the number used in this location is positive you are now using a peaking filter (raising the signal frequency), negative numbers are notch and what is normally used with the SimuCUBE.
  • Q Factor (Quality Factor) – The quality factor determines how narrow the frequency band being affected by this filter is. Higher Q-value means the filter affects a narrower band of frequencies around the given Center Frequency.”

Damping, Friction, and Inertia

Damping, Friction, and Inertia are relatively straightforward, and are settings that can be used to try to replicate the feeling of a real life car:

  • Damping will dampen the steering feel of the wheel, and can help reduce adverse effects, such as oscillation at the wheel. Too much Damping, and the wheel will feel dull. Generally I run between 0% to 1.5%, based on what sim and what car I’m driving.
  • Friction will add “Dead Weight” to the steering wheel, which can help simulate the feeling of driving a real car, that has to deal with natural friction from the steering rack and other parts of the steering system. This is another setting where less is more, so I personally don’t recommend setting it higher than 2% in most situations.
  • Inertia is a setting that tries to lighten the “Initial Resistance” that is encountered while beginning the turn of the wheel. The higher the number on this filter, the LESS the inertia in the wheel! It’s good to have some natural inertia in the wheel, so again, I don’t advise going too high with this setting.


iRacing

iRacing is one of the easier titles to set up an Open Sim Wheel for, and it is quite functional. iRacing’s Force Feedback has been known to be either loved or loathed, but it is for the most part functional. 

You WILL want to modify a text file to get the best experience. In your “Documents/iRacing” folder, there will be a text file called “app.ini”. In that file there is a line that will say:
“displaylinearinNm=0”
Change that “0” to a “1”, so when you are using “Linear Mode” Force Feedback (recommended for higher end wheels), you will be able to use a “Nm” figure for strength.

The “Nm” figure can be a little confusing at first. The number that you select in the iRacing profile is the “Maximum Strength”, so you will need to view iRacing’s force feedback strength like a fraction, with the “Maximum Strength” as the denominator. In the SimuCUBE profiler, I recommend the wheel to be set at 100% strength for iRacing, so you have the full 30Nm mark as the “Numerator”. So, for example, I tend to run with a “Maximum Strength” in iRacing of “90 Nm”. That would mean our Fraction would be 30Nm/90Nm, and thereby being 1/3 (30%) strength. If I set the Maximum Strength in iRacing to 30Nm, then my wheel will be 30/30, aka 1:1 strength. You’ll need to adjust it to fit your liking, but keep in mind, the higher the number, the WEAKER the FFB.

One tip from Sebastian Keijmel recommends checking the “Dampen Oscillations” box in the Sim, and then edit the app.ini file to optimize that setting for the Open Sim Wheel. According to Sebastian, the default settings aren’t optimal for Direct Drive Wheels, and can potentially hamper driving. So, you will need to find these lines and adjust them to this:

steerAverageSteeringTorque=0            	; True averages 360 Hz data down to 60 Hz, false uses last sample
steeringBumpStop_Deg=180.000000         	; degrees into bump stop before max force
steeringDampingFactor=0.000000          	; Damping factor adjust down if damping becomes unstable, defautlt to 0.05
steeringDampingMaxPercent=0.000000      	; Maximum amount of damping to apply, adjust this to set damping level, values between 0.05 and 0.2 are best, overriden by damping slider
steeringDampingParkedMaxPercent=0.000000	; Maximum amount of damping to apply when parked, adjust this to reduce wheel oscilation when parked, values between 0.05 and 0.30 are best
steeringFFBSmooth=1.000000              	; Percent of current FFB force to use vs average force, 1.0 = no average 0.001 = max average
steeringForceParkedPct=0.250000         	; Reduce FFB force by percent when parked, to help reduce oscilations

Here are my personal settings. Hopefully they can provide for a decent baseline for you!

Assetto Corsa

Assetto Corsa was one of the easier titles for me to set up personally, but the cars can be somewhat hit or miss (especially due to the fact that third party cars can be varying in quality). However, there’s just one setting that you would need to adjust in the “assetto_corsa.ini” file (found in \Steam\steamapps\common\assettocorsa\system\cfg folder). You will see a line that says
“[FF_EXPERIMENTAL]
ENABLE_GYRO=0
DAMPER_MIN_LEVEL=0.0″
For “ENABLE_GYRO”, change the 0 to a 1. That will help improve the feeling of the car’s FFB.

Here are my recommended settings for Assetto Corsa

rFactor 2

rFactor 2 requires quite a bit more tweaking and fine-tuning to get the best effects in the sim. By default, rFactor 2 is a very raw sim in terms of FFB, which can be a blessing and a curse. The blessing is that the FFB is very immersive and you can feel a LOT. The curse is that the FFB can be a little overblown and harsh at times. You will need to make a few adjustments to your “Controller.JSON” file to run effectively (JSON files can be adjusted with your text editor of choice, like INI files). By default, the Controller.JSON file will be found in your “steam/steamapps/common/rfactor 2/userdata/player” folder. In the Controller.JSON file, find this line:

"Steering effects strength":10000,

and you will change that number to -10000. That will invert the Force Feedback, and get it feeling more normal. Then, find “Jolt Magnitude” and set that to 0. rFactor 2 (and other ISIMotor based titles, like RaceRoom Racing Experience and Automobilista) has had this weird issue with the Jolt Magnitude setting, where the steering may “lock” in one direction, and could risk hurting yourself. Setting the “Jolt Magnitude” to 0 helps resolve that issue.

Lastly, in the text file, look for the portion with “Rumble Strip Settings” (just above the “Steering Effects Strength” we adjusted earlier. Lower those settings, or turn them off entirely. Here is another excerpt, from Sebastian Keijmel’s Controller.JSON that he has posted in his video:

"Rumble strip magnitude":0,"Rumble strip magnitude#":"How strong the canned rumble strip rumble is.  Range 0.0 to 1.0, 0.0 disables effect.","Rumble strip pull factor":0,"Rumble strip pull factor#":"How strongly wheel pulls right\/left when running over a rumble strip. Suggested range: -1.5 to 1.5.","Rumble strip update thresh":0,"Rumble strip update thresh#":"Amount of change required to update rumble strip effect (0.0 - 1.0)","Rumble strip wave type":0,"Rumble strip wave type#":"Type of wave to use for vibe: 0=Sine, 1=Square, 2=Triangle, 3=Sawtooth up, 4=Sawtooth down.",

If you want to download his Controller.JSON file, you can download it here, or via the description in his video. It’s a great starting point to get a solid feeling in rFactor 2.

WARNING!

rFactor 2 (as well as other ISIMotor Based Titles, such as RaceRoom Racing Experience and Automobilista) do NOT allow for you to have an automatically adjusting degrees of rotation. You will need to manually adjust your degrees of rotation in the SimuCUBE profiler to match whatever car you are driving.

With that being said, here are my recommended settings for rFactor 2. Note that, for rFactor 2, I do have my Force Feedback settings lower in the SimuCUBE profiler, so I can have the “Car Specific FFB Multiplier” set consistently to 1.0 in rF2. I have been informed that because of the way rFactor 2 handles Force Feedback, it is actually better to keep the SimuCUBE forces at 100%, and then adjust the Car Specific Force Feedback to a suitable level. That is because different cars will clip at different levels. I just tested a couple cars with my SimuCUBE Profiler strength set to 100%, and rFactor 2’s Car Specific FFB Multiplier set to 0.3 (30% strength), and you do gain a lot more detail and fidelity.

RaceRoom Racing Experience

RaceRoom Racing Experience is one of the trickier Sim Racing titles in terms of configuring Force Feedback, which can make it a challenge to set up the Open Sim Wheel. As mentioned in the rFactor 2 section, R3E has some issues that need to be resolved via text files. 

You won’t have to deal with Inverting the Force Feedback via a text file, since R3E has the option to do that via the in-game settings. However, you will need to make the same adjustments to the Jolt Magnitude and possibly the Rumble Strip settings again. This time, you will need to create a controller preset, and then adjust the RCS file, which is located in Documents/My Games/SimBin/RaceRoom Racing Experience/UserData/ControlSet. In the RCS File, you will find the line that says “FFB Jolt Magnitude”, and change that value to 0. If you want, you can change the Rumble Strip values (located above the Jolt Magnitude line) to match the rFactor 2 settings.

Again, like rF2, RaceRoom requires you to manually set your degrees of rotation on a per-car basis via the SimuCUBE settings. 

Here are my recommended settings for RaceRoom! (Revised Sept 3, 2018)

This is the first round of recommended settings for my “SimuCUBE Open Wheel Setup Guide! Later this week, I will add settings for Project CARS 2, Automobilista, F1 2018, and more!