It’s always exciting to see an email from Wiaczesław Oziabło, better known as “Slaw” behind Slaw Device. An engineer and supplier of high-end flight control pedals for the “crazy enthusiast” market, he is famous for producing devices that look less like computer peripherals and more like gleaming metallic works of art.
It’s even After exciting when that email promises something new and cool. “After a long break”, wrote Oziabło, “we have continued and completed preparations for the production of RH Rotor rudder pedals. At the moment I have several sets of these rudder pedals, which were used only for photos and videos. He offered to send me one of the near-final pre-production models for review, noting that it would have only minor differences from the production devices.
I accepted immediately and a few weeks later DHL dumped a heavy box on my porch. It contained the latest offering from Slaw Device: the RH Rotor pedals.
Let’s start with two things: first, these pedals are awesome. Second, these pedals cost $475.
I bring up the price now because for many people that will be a deciding factor. And while the RH Rotors are cheaper than the Thrustmaster TPRs (which I reviewed in 2018 and now cost $599), and while it would take a fool to choose the mass-produced Thrustmaster kit over these made-for- by hand, there’s just no getting around the fact that $475 is a lot money for a single device. And it’s not even a joystick, it’s a set of three-axis pedals meant to control the yaw of an airplane or spacecraft.
If you can afford the cost, you’ll get a rock-solid device that will likely last you a decade or more. Like previous Slaw Device hardware, RH rotors are an interconnected dance of struts and sliding metal plates built around a central roller cam with two different engagement profiles, one with a pronounced central detent and the other smooth. Most of the controller is made from powder-coated aluminum and steel, and the whole thing weighs 7.7 kilograms. There’s some assembly required – you need to attach the pedal arms and brake spacers – but it takes around five minutes tops, and all the tools you need are provided in the accessory kit.
RH rotors have a wide, long base that is dotted with non-slip rubber pads; the pedals are designed to be stable and usable on virtually any type of floor you might have. They also come with mounting holes if you want to bolt the pedals in place on a cockpit (or straight to the floor if that’s how you ride).