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Fanatec CSL Seat


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#1 MapleHamwich

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 04:14 PM

So I've ordered, recieved and built my Fanatec CSL Seat.  Shipment was great, packaging was well done.  My only qualm was a holdup with Canada customs (in Canada, ordered from US) and then Canada Post screwing up the delivery.  Everything from Fanatecs end was speedy, communicative, informative and well done.

 

This is pretty much exactly what my unit looks like, except I own the regular CSR Pedals and no Shifter (at least until the Club Sport Shifter releases!).

CSL-Seat-View_05-1000x666.jpg

 

Here are my first impressions.

 

- Didn't take me that long to build.  5 hours total I'm guessing.  I did some adjusting to tailor it to me afterwards though.

-- Here is the manual, for those interested in the complexity of the build.

-Very adjustable, but not easily done.  Even the smallest adjustment means turning screws with an allen key.
--This has a possible super easy fix, with the acquiring of some wing bolts!  

-Back pain.  The size of the chair (smaller), combined with the curvature of it, don't gel with my 6 Foot 200lbs frame.
--I've counter acted this with a pillow for lumbar support.  It's working well.
--I could bend the aluminum tubes and completely solve this issue, if I knew how.
--You could also remove the chair, fasten a wood board to the metal frame, and install a real carseat to overcome the issue as well.

-The chassis size and adjustability are great.  You could fit anyone in it.

-It's very sturdy!  Super awesome to drive with.

-Side Effect Bonus of Wheel Force Feed Back distributing itself through the chassis!  The immersion this creates is super awesome!  

Overall, I'm very happy.  The seat is a bit of a disappointment, but it seems totally fixable in the long run.  Similiarly, the ease of adjustment could be vastly improved with some wing bolts.  That's the real strength of this unit.  It's engineered incredibly well.  Part of that is its almost open source design, with lots of options for personal mods.  Worth every penny!


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#2 MapleHamwich

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 02:16 PM

I've learned that a specific step in the build allows you to customize seat angle.  In the manual, if you switch S8 and S9 in steps 1 and 2, you will get an increased seat angle.  This has massively improved the ergonomics for me.  My instant reaction to the change in seat angle was, "Wow, this is WAY more comfortable."  All lower back pain I experienced has been eliminated.

 

However, not all is rosy as my lower back pain was replaced with mid-upper back pain as the shoulder support in the seat took a more active role in supporting my weight.  Important to this experience was that the mid-upper back pain was not nearly as pronounced as the previous lower back pain.  It also didn't instantly affect me, but took a while.  Also, I do not think this will be a universal experience.  My 6 Foot 200lbs frame results in a wide shoulder set.  This could also forseeably be resolved with some bending of the aluminum shoulder tubes for a wider stance.

 

My overall impression of the CSL Seat is still overwhelmingly positive at this point.

 

Post Script

I've, to date, through the entirety of my experiences, not had an issue with pedal lift as some have reported.  I can see how it could happen, but have not experienced it myself yet.

 

-Edit-

I've solved my upper back pain issue with the clever placement of some pillows.


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#3 Syquus

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Posted 24 March 2013 - 03:14 PM

Thank you thank you thank you for your comment on S8/S9 substituion. I spent like 30 hours on my CSL seat wondering why the f"$& would anyone build something so much uncomfortable.

I was having back pain and very serious shoulder issues so I decided some days ago to unmount the upper metal part ("the ears" that surround shoulders-neck-head...)

 

After reading you, I started over again (took like 1 hour to unmount and mount everything properly!!) and now THIS is a 300€ Seat...

 

Your trick did it!!

 

 

Just wanted to show some grattitude and to say others to try this trick. I'm tall (1.86cm) but not too wide. It almost killed me!

 

 

Anyway, Bad reputation for Fanatec. They didn't reply to my emails since the begining of March

 

Regards



#4 borekb

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Posted 05 April 2013 - 06:35 PM

I've learned that a specific step in the build allows you to customize seat angle.  In the manual, if you switch S8 and S9 in steps 1 and 2, you will get an increased seat angle.

 

Thank you so much for this tip! I was quite disappointed with CSL when I first sat into it and although this fix doesn't really make the seat as great as I thought it would be, is improves things significantly.

 

BTW if I may ask, why did you go with CSL instead of Playseat? My reason was that I read one or two reviews which greatly praised CSL and its predecessor (Rinoseat GTR) and it was cheaper to buy here where I live. However, I cannot say I'm happy with the product so far. It took too much effort to put together (I even had to contact Fanatec support because I didn't know to properly mount my G27 wheel and shifter - never had to do that for any other product in my life), trying to move the wheel a bit closer to my chest took about an hour and I really don't want to go through that procedure again etc. But by far the biggest issue is the seat itself, as you mentioned. The lack of adjustability and zero lumber support is not what I expected and even in the more comfortable position, my back wasn't happy after one hour of playing.

 

This all got me thinking if I shouldn't get Playseat instead. I don't like the bar in the middle but at least it has a proper seat, not this  Some models are priced similarly to this seat and at least my impression is that you get a proper seat, not this bulk of tubes and springs and foam. Did you have a chance to compare CSL with Playseat?



#5 MapleHamwich

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Posted 25 April 2013 - 02:17 PM

Thank you thank you thank you for your comment on S8/S9 substituion. I spent like 30 hours on my CSL seat wondering why the f"$& would anyone build something so much uncomfortable.

 

I was having back pain and very serious shoulder issues so I decided some days ago to unmount the upper metal part ("the ears" that surround shoulders-neck-head...)

 

After reading you, I started over again (took like 1 hour to unmount and mount everything properly!!) and now THIS is a 300€ Seat...

 

Your trick did it!!

 

 

Just wanted to show some grattitude and to say others to try this trick. I'm tall (1.86cm) but not too wide. It almost killed me!

 

 

Anyway, Bad reputation for Fanatec. They didn't reply to my emails since the begining of March

 

Regards

 

You're welcome.  It's a very big oversight on Fanatec's behalf.  They need to have a feature list along with the instructions which details the various configurations of the rig, and possible set ups for people's body type.  It would help immensely with consumer satisfaction.

 

 


BTW if I may ask, why did you go with CSL instead of Playseat? My reason was that I read one or two reviews which greatly praised CSL and its predecessor (Rinoseat GTR) and it was cheaper to buy here where I live. However, I cannot say I'm happy with the product so far.  But by far the biggest issue is the seat itself, as you mentioned. The lack of adjustability and zero lumber support is not what I expected and even in the more comfortable position, my back wasn't happy after one hour of playing.

 

This all got me thinking if I shouldn't get Playseat instead. I don't like the bar in the middle but at least it has a proper seat, not this  Some models are priced similarly to this seat and at least my impression is that you get a proper seat, not this bulk of tubes and springs and foam. Did you have a chance to compare CSL with Playseat?

 

Play Seat was out for me.  Price wise it was too much (the $300 price tag on the CSL was high for me even), and getting one to where I live would have been a pain.  Also, and most importantly, I absolutely would not have bought a rig with a centre post.  I can't stand that design, it completely ruins the sim aspect for me, as a car would never have a post between your legs.  It also ruins the comfort of the rig for me.  So for non-post rigs, the CSL was the cheapest option I had available, that functioned as a full rig.

 

I am disappointed with the CSL Seat, only for its actual seat.  I am planning on replacing my seat with a stand alone recaro or something similiar in the future.  My plan for this is to remove the seat, keep the bars in place that hold the seat, attach a solid wood platform to those bars, and attach the automotive seat to the wood platform.  That way I can keep the rig pretty much the same, and still have full seat adjustability.  We'll see if any issues arise with seat height when I get closer to that build.

 

I'm glad my little post/half review was able to help you guys out!


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#6 MapleHamwich

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Posted 19 August 2013 - 02:27 PM

5 Months on and I am still overall happy with my CSL seat.  Using my little pillow arrangement is fairly convenient for me and eliminates all pain.  Because of that, I haven't replaced the seat with a real seat yet.  It's a minor fix that results in lots of comfort.  

 

Though I'm still disappointed with the actual seat, the rig itself is still top quality to me and I'm very happy.  


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#7 borekb

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Posted 19 August 2013 - 03:05 PM

Same here. The seat could be better but overall, I am very happy.






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