Hi guys (and gals),
New here... I find your site and conversations (those I've checked out) first rate. I look forward to many challenges and righteous convo when my time permits. My goal and sole purpose to this post is to help dispell some myths and clear up issues BEFORE it costs any of you great expense or a "final" bang :"(
I have over 35 yrs as an auto driveability tech (specialize in electronic diagnosis and tuning). I began teaching this stuff when our team of instructors had to write courses and support books because the material for students (other mechanics) simply didn't exist (early 80's).
I love this stuff! It is pure and simple physics, machines, and those servicing them, have to abide by the laws. Our machines and their methods of operation may change but the laws (physics) don't. Suck, squeeze, bang, blow...
I recently helped a customer PROPERLY set up a Vi-PEC V44 to his 99 Mitsu 3000GT VR4. Both are amazing pieces of work. It was my first real look inside electronic engine management which allowed me to determine the results. I have wrenched/managed for many OE dealerships, reflashed hundreds of vehicles, to actually get a choice what mods to make calibration-wise WOW! I felt like I was back to rejetting carbs, curving distributors, and setting up juice ~ like a kid in a candy store with major deja vu.
ANY mods to any OE's machine must be thoroughly researched before investing - its the only way to get great results.
You would not believe the numbers of customers I've seen waste their money performing half a Mod. Like a bad knot, the mods often come undone. Failures can cost a hundred times more than doing the mod right to start with.
Don't expect to install a new programmable ECU and drive away that afternoon. For every hour of tuning I put in about 3-4 hours of research.
Accept the fact that mods changing emissions (in a testing state/area) are often unable to be corrected through tuning. Most car owners will run one version of their ride just for the smog test. Some swap entire exhaust, intake and engine management systems to get the pass.
Here is the best advice I can offer:
Find a good tuner, the more time they are willing to spend discussing your mods and helping you work within your budget (off the clock) the more successful the end result. A good shop/tech will have a following, ask around. Unless you have deep pockets, stick with proven mods. Leave the expensive R&D up to the pro's at the track (they usually have a fresh one in the crate to cover their mistakes before anyone notices).
Perform mods wisely ~ if you make it go faster, make it stop/steer faster too. Unless you perform a full mod correctly, any gain in one area will sacrifice something else. Rules of the track baby.
Cheers to all, keep those shiny sides up!