It has been over five years since I last reviewed a steering wheel stand here on Console Monster, so with the arrival of Microsoft’s and Sony’s new consoles and a full grid of new racers already released, with some looming on the horizon, I thought it was time to see what alternatives are out there for us budding racing fans. Throughout my browsing the Steering Wheel Stand from GT Omega caught my eye, and they kindly obliged me with one to review.
Collapsed, erected *Giggity* and wheel base adjusted positions of the GT Omega Steering Wheel Stand
The Steering Wheel Stand is GT Omega's entry-level wheel stand, however it doesn’t scrimp on its features, oh no. I am a big fan of collapsible stands, because not everyone has the room to permanently house a complete racing setup in the home, more so if you are a more casual racer like myself, who doesn't always want a wheel always out and on show.
One of my biggest concerns with my current collapsible wheel stand was that it had a bar between my legs. Now, anyone who drives a car will know that this isn't a normal driving environment, and although this has been acceptable over the time, what with most wheels coming with only two peddles, it is time for change.
The Steering Wheel Stand has a hinged, rectangular-shaped, all-metal framework, which means there is no middle bar between your legs, and will also offer the ability to upgrade to a clutch peddle setup at a later date, without a middle bar getting in the way of your peddle work. Future planning doesn't stop there either: A separate optional £10 L-shaped (or T-shaped) gear shifter mount is also available and can be inserted it to the bottom of the frame, in both left or right side configurations. Also there are connection points for an optional GT Omega Racing Seat Frame (£44.99) and Racing Seat (£109.95) for that complete racing cockpit experience.
Logitech G27 (inc. gear mount), Logitech GT Driving Force and Thrustmaster T500RS mounted wheels
There are two key areas in which the stand can be adjusted to suit your racing style. The bolted wheel mount can have its height adjusted between 55cm and 78cm in length, from the main stand, which will suit various arm lengths, and the angle of the fold out bracket can be adjusted between two positions. The higher position is for conventional types who will be using a sofa or a conventional chair, and a lower position for racing seats. With the wheel base arms adjusted and the main arms set to their high angle I was able to find a perfect position whilst sitting in my IKEA POÄNG chair, also reaching the peddles comfortably.
Like the wheel base, the peddle base also has pre-drilled holes for the most popular wheel types, however I found the adjustable mounting bracket more than enough to lock my peddles into position without the need to screw them down. I would have liked to have seen some angle adjustment to the peddle base, and I can see this might be needed for the racing seat angle, but for sofa/chair use the angle is more than acceptable.
For anyone seeking a racing wheel stand, it is important that the whole rig is sturdy and solid. Thankfully I am happy to report that the build quality of this stand is rock solid. Coming from my previous five year old rickety and shaky stand, sampling the GT Omega's solid build during its construction, and most of all during use, is a enormous improvement.
Optional: Gear Shifter Mount, Rear Seat Frame and Racing Seat can be attached to the Steering Wheel Stand
With my Logitech Driving Force GT wheel clamped in and GRID Autosport fired up; racing with the new stand is a huge improvement over my last stand. With force feedback nudges, heavy corner turns and dodging through crashes and black markers, in all cases the GT Omega stand didn't move an inch, let alone a centimetre. All of this sturdiness comes at a price - the stand's weight, 14kg in fact, and that's minus the wheel and peddles.
At this weight you can understand why this stand will not budge during use, and at a combined 19kg, with the wheel and peddles attached, sliding the wheel out to play isn't too much trouble. If you are looking at a collapsible wheel stand then it is worth noting that this stand will require the removal of two bolts before the stand can collapse fully and be stowed away. I would have preferred some bike quick-release bolts here to speed the process of collapsing the wheel when it is not needed. Perhaps this is something GT Omega can look into, to make this foldable stand really consumer friendly. With that said, having screwed bolts here may help with the stand’s solid build, but I am sure this sturdiness wouldn't be reduced too much if quick-release bolts were used here.
Overall I am very impressed with the GT Omega Steering Wheel Stand, and after looking around I believe the GT Omega has one of the best wheel stands out there currently, due to its price (£89.95), its solid build and the various upgrade options that make it perfect for any racing fan whose looking to start off with a racing wheel setup at first, then when budget allows they can upgrade this setup with the available gear shifters and racing seats options.
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