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June 1, 2005

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We've shown some pretty amazing video game interfaces for motor racing simulation in the past, with the stand-out being the world's most expensive PS2 peripherals but this really looks like the business! It's the next production version of Force Dynamics 301 race simulator. Force dynamics was founded in 2001 on the philosophy that the missing link in racing simulation had changed instead of computers struggling to handle the computations necessary to replicate a car accurately, drivers were struggling to drive cars without being able to feel them. In keeping with the company’s first and continual focus to replicate a driver's experience to the absolute limit of technology, the next version of Force Dynamics 301 machine is …

We’ll have a more detailed report on Force Dynamics latest machine in the next few days, along with more details and images. Until then, here’s the first image of the new machine.

Force Dynamics first showed the first version of the 301 in November 2004 and started selling them in February, 2005. the new 301 takes over from the first generation and pricing begins at US$10,000 for the absolutely basic machine.

How much your 301 costs will depend on what sort of specification your require. If you want it for home and know that if you take off your seatbelt while driving it will probably dump you on your head and hurt you, then you have been warned.

If you’re a promotional company and want to give your customers a thrill while maintaining your insurance premiums smaller than the GDP of a small third world country, you’ll probably want the interlocks that stop the machine from operating if the user takes unlocks their seatbelt or opens the door.

“Most customers of our customers are in promotion and they go for the fully specced machines a projection display system and two computers, said Force Dynamics’ David Wiernick. “That’s one computer for the simulation that drives the machine and the control computer that does all the calculations to decide where the machine has to be.”

Then there’s a high quality force feedback steering system and pedals and … for a fully specced machine, you’re looking at US26,000 to US$30,000 but for that, you get a race simulator that really does feel like you’re in a race car.

The founders of Force Dynamics are the Wiernicki brothers – who between them have a lot of experience (95 years combined experience) in production manufacturing, R&D;, industrial automation, and custom machine building plus a lot more experience (20 years combined experience) in racing Trans-Am, FIA Sports Cars, and the SCCA, driving everything from Formula Ford to GTOs.

As David says, “Our experience in racing means we know what to do, and our experience in industry means we know how to do it.” Check out the machine in action in these videos at the Force Dynamics web site.

About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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