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Old 06-07-2009, 07:52 AM   #1
06STi
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Default Crawford/ I-speed tune = blown motor

So I have been ignored for the last two weeks from crawford. After they blew my motor up.

As allot of you know I stood behind them when my car was clearly not running right in the 1/4 mile and when I posted the dyno chart and everyone said it looked wrong..

So the quick details....

Had crawford tune car. dec 23
picked car up with 3k-4k surging problem. Got home emailed them.
we tried to log it but delta dash sucks. So I parked the car.

Then march, pulled the car back out. Had a same problem, started logging car.
Bill seent me a new tune. 3/13/09
Still had problems. emailed Bill, parked the car again.

Last month took car out for quick run down the 1/4 mile to log the car. About the safest place to log the car without being on the street.

I posted up the log file and sent it down to crawford. Bill looked at it and sent me another rom file to try. 5/1/09 4:13pm
Pulled timing and boost from rom

I load the new rom and go log the car.
Sent log back.

Bill took adjusted map and sent a new map back to me.
Added timing to rom

Loaded map and
logged car. 5/1/09 6:23pm

Sent logs back.
Bill sent me a new map 5/1/09 8:28pm
Bill added boost back to rom. But Bill was unsure if the wgdc he was using was correct for my set up.

Loaded map and went down the freeway on ramp.
Less then a mile from my house. Got onto the freeway and the car picked up to speed and was making boosted.

I then started logging and went back onto the throttle but about 4.8k rpms it stopped making boost before I could do much. As I started pulling back over to the right my EGT's shot way up and I pulled to the right hand shoulder. Car would not idle very well and was smoking bad.
I was able to limp the car home and the next morning I spun the car over and heard the sound of uneven compresion.

When I pulled the motor apart I found broken pistons and about a quart of oil in the fmic.

Now I called crawford and told them after Bill sending me a email asking if they could do anything. I asked for a refund on the tune. I was turned away, I told them I was out a motor and atleast they could refund my tune. No luck. I was also told by Qurk that he would have a local shop tell everyone that "I changed parts on my engine to cause the engine to fail." I was then hung up on by the owner.

Guess he didnt have all the facts at the time.

As running rom files back to back while sending logs back to the tuner like that and having the tuner add boost back into the rom after adding timing means he seemed to think the car was running just fine off the last logs he recevied. Otherwise why would he have added boost to the last rom.
And the added boost with the added timing is what broke the pistons in my engine.

Great Customer Service.

Had they refunded me I would have bought a motor from them over the phone.

So I call back and have been ignored. So the $500 tune is going to cost more.
I would stay far away from any dealing with crawford till they give their customer service a better tune.
I also have all emails from bill about my tunes, and the 1st email stating they if I dont like the tune, I can ask for my money back. Guess thats not the case huh?

They also claim my car has had other things done. Which is not true. I have more then enough to prove that is not the case. And its funny that this engine popped on their tune. A tune with less then 5 miles on it.

So they told me to piss off and its all on me. I talked with a local shop that I have spent allot of money with over 10k They deal with them directly. I asked them to call them and speak with them. That yeilded nothing..


And before the flame war starts. Read up on my car. The motor they blew was a less then 3k miles brand new OEM STi short block.

My engine mods are
OEM STi short block (3k miles break in)
ARP head studs
PE Timing Belt
Cosworth oil pump
Cosworth timing belt guides
Cosworth air pump deletes
NGK 1-step Colder Plugs
wally 255 fuel pump
Perrin V1 fuel rails
Dtwrk's 740's
ATP GT3076R
HKS Downpipe / modded for atp ewg
JIC Ti Catback
APS FMIC
APS BOV
APS 70mm CAI
All these parts brand new, except the JIC I bought used off the forum. But it had less then 500 miles on it.
Stock headers / up-pipe
Stock intake manifold
Stock TGV's


As you can see its not a bunch of miss matched parts from ebay. Nothing cheap here.

They have also ignored my requests for any documents regarding my car being in their shop for work. No work orders or tuning wavier. I'm glad I have pictures of them working on it on their dyno pack.

So you guys tell me.... what would you do if you were in my shoes?
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Last edited by 06STi; 06-07-2009 at 07:59 AM.
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Old 06-07-2009, 08:31 AM   #2
Damon
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wow... another great story about their service.

its obvious you need a new motor. if you have the $$ get a built motor from a REPUTABLE motor builder ( http://www.raw1performance.com ) and go with another tuner.
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Old 06-07-2009, 08:41 AM   #3
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this ^ is what i suggest, but i would not give up on trying to get your money back
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Old 06-07-2009, 09:25 AM   #4
chlnOrSlpn?
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I agree, I wouldn't give up just yet on getting your refund. If you have documents or any kind of proof to back you up, continue to fight it.

I would definitely shoot for a Raw block and do the work yourself or bring it to a reputable shop near by.
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Old 06-07-2009, 10:39 AM   #5
kellygnsd
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Are you running ECUtek or OS?
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Old 06-07-2009, 10:42 AM   #6
D Money
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Wait, so they were sending you maps without actually re-tuning the car? Why didn't they just tell you to bring the car back to them? That would make more sense.

+1 on Raw performance! Ron will never turn away a customer like Crawford did to you. I suggest you fight it until the end man!
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Old 06-07-2009, 11:06 AM   #7
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This sucks i live in san diego getting ready to swap a hybrid into my bug eye that's where i was going to go. Now what drive to orange county? on top of that i am currently lending a hand on three other subaru builds and this is where i was suggesting them to go for a tune, how can i do that now. I wish you better luck you def have more patience than me i would lose it, but i guess it good your keeping your cool.
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Old 06-07-2009, 11:17 AM   #8
crand002
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Quick question, why do you not have forged pistons?

What were your AFR's, timing, boost, etc. when you left the shop?
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Old 06-07-2009, 11:21 AM   #9
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Turn it in to the better business bureau first and foremost (they will rail them with questions and make their life difficult) - If they are doing their job that is.

Start calling them about 5-6 times a day until you get an answer - your money - your car - their lack of a tune and customer support. They will eventually get tired of you and do whatever it takes to make you go away. Trust me I know.

Customer service from a couple of vendors on this site has completely blown me away - In times like this (economically) you would think they would be there to do whatever they could to soak up the last bit of money owners have prior to it drying up..

Call Ron he take care of anything you need and be there if there are problems (given you follow his instructions)

-Jerod

Last edited by JSarv; 06-07-2009 at 11:37 AM.
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Old 06-07-2009, 11:36 AM   #10
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wow, very surprising to me, I figured crawford would be a top notch company with top notch customer service.. I also would suggest talking to Ron, he wont treat you like that.
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Old 06-07-2009, 11:43 AM   #11
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I want to state at the outset that Bill is a great tuner and certainly is more than capable of doing a great job.

Let me say to you, I totally feel your pain. Money does not grow on trees and at these times its easy to second guess your passion for Suabru performance and get depressed.

However, it is not right when people who make extensive modifications to their car immediately blame the tuner when something goes wrong. Before you can point a finger and blame someone - the FIRST step is to assertain what went wrong and why the engine failed. The only time tuning can be blamed is if the facts show that a tuning error created the problem. These kind of cars require frequent maintenance and if something is not working well or needs correction (e.g. vac hose came off, low on oil etc) then big problems can result.

Remote or email tunes can be difficult to pull off on Subaru engines - particularly those on 91 octane - which is why I don't offer them. I do all my Subaru tuning hands on - one car at a time. Often the "feel" and "sound" is the key and you have to have the ability to take your foot out of the gas right away if its not right. It seems from your story that your car was at Crawford at some point for a tune and dyno there. Why didn't you bring the car back to them to correct the problems?

Often a tune can be perfect but the car may have mechanical issues or problems which make it impossible for the car to be running properly. This is why the most important thing an experienced tuner can do for you is to "feel" and "know" if the car is running "right" or is something is not working properly. This only comes from experience and being hands and ass dyno on.

I want to also state that even with the best tuning with the ATP bolt on turbo - your set up is certainly capable to break a stock piston in half with no tunning error or problem what so ever - particularly on 91 octane. The fact is that the stock pistons are very weak. Running a turbo like that on the stock pistons on 91 octane fuel is like walking a tightrope.

It would be nice to hear Bill / Crawford's take on the situation as you sounded very reasonable to resolve the situation with just a tuning fee refund and move on. Hopefully, you can work things out with them and resolve the situation, as they are certainly a great shop. If not try to find a qualified tuner in your area to tune the car hands on or have someone fly out to do the tuning in person. I would avoid doing email and remote tunes - especially with stock pistons.

In the past when customers who I have tuned have experienced any engine failures, even if it had nothing to do with my tuning, I always try and work with them and help them. Be it getting them parts at my cost or providing something to help them, I like to do what ever I can to let them know that I understand how frustrating the car modification hobby can be at times, especially when things dont go well. Not everyone is Ken Block and not every one will have the same kind of success with thier own Subaru project. Sometimes, all it takes is taking the time for the customer and tuner to have a long talk and listen to each other and communicate to reach a good conslucion. In some cases, some customers are unreasonable and have totally unrealistic goals and expectations. Someone should have advised you going into this that the stock pistons were weak and that drop in pistons would have been a good investment.

I have a few questions

# 1 - Where do you live ? What octane fuel are you using ?

# 2 - Assuming that the new OEM short block was just put in 3 K miles ago - why not also change out the pistons as the stock pistons are very weak.

# 3 - How much boost were you running when you experienced the problem? What was the timing, knock correction and advance multiplier at?

# 4 - Did you have a wideband 02 sensor and if so what were the a.f ratios under full load ?

# 5 - Did you take a data log of what was going on when the engine failed?

# 6 - Did you take any photos of the park plugs and or piston tops ? How did the oil in the pan look ?

I know this is very upsetting to you but try to look at it as an opportunity to make your car even better and faster. I would suggest a set of good drop in pistons and an Aquamist kit. With those improvements you will be able to safely realize the full potential of the ATP turbo and have a reliable set up.

Al

Last edited by alfriedesq; 06-07-2009 at 01:08 PM.
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Old 06-07-2009, 12:46 PM   #12
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dude i won't take sides here but your both at falt!
there CS does suck for people with low budget builds they have way bigger fish to fry! but they should call and reach some sort of agreement!

but dude once your car isn't running right you don't go to the strip! or if you here a funny noise you stop your car and call a tow truck, not make it home!

it sucks what happened but it might have been avoided who knows who's to blame? but i'm sure refunding your money won't put a dent in there wallet! GL man!
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Old 06-07-2009, 12:53 PM   #13
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wow, sucks to hear this
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Old 06-07-2009, 01:16 PM   #14
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Gl Op
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Old 06-07-2009, 01:18 PM   #15
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You really should go with forged pistons next time. The piece of mind you gain is worth the $500.
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Old 06-07-2009, 01:27 PM   #16
06STi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kellygnsd View Post
Are you running ECUtek or OS?
EcuTek. Which I will never use again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chlnOrSlpn? View Post
I agree, I wouldn't give up just yet on getting your refund. If you have documents or any kind of proof to back you up, continue to fight it.
Thats my list of things this week. I have someone to handle everything.

Quote:
Originally Posted by D Money View Post
Wait, so they were sending you maps without actually re-tuning the car? Why didn't they just tell you to bring the car back to them? That would make more sense.
They are down south 300+ miles from me. They told me they could tune it. So I didnt go back down. But it was on their dyno in their shop dec 23.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alfriedesq View Post
I want to state at the outset that Bill is a great tuner and certainly is more than capable of doing a great job.
Bill is a great guy. I was really happy with him. Till he blew the motor and his customer service went to ****.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill
Hi Michael,
Well that is interesting news and well not too happy with myself about it. Do you have any logs with the last pull onto the freeway? Otherwise I guess you will need to pull it apart to see what has happened to it.

In any case I assume you will not want to continue tuning with our services and I understand. But let me know what we can work out with you when you find out the problem with the engine.
I ask for a refund on tune.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill
I did take quite a bit of my time out of my day to see about resolving some
small issues but nothing that would cause problems with the engine. Also
from what I have heard from you is the engine was built by another company
and when you pulled it apart it was not as you had expected. So what else
might be wrong with this engine?

So in all we can not offer a refund on tuning.
Nice huh...
When your map fails, Quick blame the other company. Funny its a OEM Short Block and it was running without cracked pistons before your last rom file. Where you added more boost.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alfriedesq View Post
Its a shame when people who make extensive modifications to their car immediately blame the tuner when something goes wrong. Before you can point a finger and blame someone - the FIRST step is to assertain what went wrong and why the engine failed. The only time tuning can be blamed is if the facts show that a tuning error created the problem.
Dude.. I have and know the facts.
Read this thread and see more about what was going on And how quick I was not to jump head first to blame the tuner.

http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show...1755455&page=2

Also the time line points out. Tune #2 he saw that it was running good in the log file 2 hours later and rom file #3 and its blown.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alfriedesq View Post
Remote or email tunes can be difficult to pull off on Subaru engines - particularly those on 91 octane - which is why I don't offer them. I do all my Subaru tuning hands on - one car at a time. Often the "feel" and "sound" is the key and you have to have the ability to take your foot out of the gas right away if its not right. It seems from your story that your car was at Crawford at some point for a tune and dyno there. Why didn't you bring the car back to them to correct the problems?
Car was at Crawford for tuning.
Also my backround is that I work in the race world. I know all about hearing and feeling. There was not enough time. Certain failures can only take split seconds to accur. He was not able to control the boost correctly in my car.
As when we had exchanged emails he second guessed about how the last rom file would work. Which is a one of the big reasons why I didnt hammer on the car. It was a very controled roll on. I will also tell you the condition outside was during a huge monsoon style rain fall. So you really cant beat on a car when logging in that type of weather.

They told me it would be no problem. Their website even backs them up. They have remote tuned all over the world. So I had no reason to think otherwise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alfriedesq View Post
Often a tune can be perfect but the car may have mechanical issues or problems which make it impossible for the car to be running properly. This is why the most important thing an experienced tuner can do for you is to "feel" and "know" if the car is running "right" or is something is not working properly. This only comes from experience and being hands and ass dyno on.
Yeah... I feel you on that. I have tuned 100's of motorcycles on dynojets, As I used to be a instructor teaching how to map and dyno bikes. Slightly differant world. But really it takes very high degree of feel to squeeze a few out of high strung motorcycles.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alfriedesq View Post
I want to also state that even with the best tuning with the ATP bolt on turbo - your set up is certainly capable to break a stock piston in half with no tunning error or problem what so ever - particularly on 91 octane. The fact is that the stock pistons are very weak. Running a turbo like that on the stock pistons on 91 octane fuel is like walking a tightrope.
Quote:
Originally Posted by alfriedesq View Post
It would be nice to hear Bill / Crawford's take on the situation as you sounded very reasonable to resolve the situation with just a tuning fee refund and move on. Hopefully, you can work things out with them and resolve the situation, as they are certainly a great shop. If not try to find a qualified tuner in your area to tune the car hands on or have someone fly out to do the tuning in person. I would avoid doing email and remote tunes - especially with stock pistons.
They knew about the stock pistons. Thats why I told them from the get go I wanted a good street tune and not to go full balls with it. I think I even tell people that is a few other posts I made about the tune when people started to flame me for the tune.
http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=1670250

Quote:
Originally Posted by alfriedesq View Post
In the past when customers who I have tuned have experienced any engine failures, even if it had nothing to do with my tuning, I always try and work with them and help them. Be it getting them parts at my cost or providing something to help them, I like to do what ever I can to let them know that I understand how frustrating the car modification hobby can be at times, especially when things dont go well. Not everyone is Ken Block and not every one will have the same kind of success with thier own Subaru project. Sometimes, all it takes is taking the time for the customer and tuner to have a long talk and listen to each other and communicate to reach a good conslucion. In some cases, some customers are unreasonable and have totally unrealistic goals and expectations. Someone should have advised you going into this that the stock pistons were weak and that drop in pistons would have been a good investment.
I know I own a money pit. That money pit now is parked till I decided what to do.
Here is proof of such money pit. I also do not use cheap ebay parts.
http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=1667843

Quote:
Originally Posted by alfriedesq View Post
I have a few questions

# 1 - Where do you live ? What octane fuel are you using ?
Northern California 91OCT
# 2 - Assuming that the new OEM short block was just put in 3 K miles ago - why not also change out the pistons as the stock pistons are very weak.
The motor was put in by another shop that blew it up on their dyno. I also had just a pe1820 at the time. I was also told by Bill that it would be ok as we were not going full boat on the tune.
# 3 - How much boost were you running when you experienced the problem? What was the timing, knock correction and advance multiplier at?
I have the log files of all the runs. They speak for themselfs.
# 4 - Did you have a wideband 02 sensor and if so what were the a.f ratios under full load ?
Just what the Defi EGT gauge said and what the deltadash logged. I was not told by the tuner to install or that I would need a wideband. He told me he only needed the log sheets to make updated rom files.
# 5 - Did you take a data log of what was going on when the engine failed?
Sure did..... looking at that and the time line speaks for itself.
# 6 - Did you take any photos of the park plugs and or piston tops ? How did the oil in the pan look ?
I have all the parts are out, pics of the pistons is in one of the above thread links. The oil was it was new but dirty and most of it was in the downpipe and intake system.

I know this is very upsetting to you but try to look at it as an opportunity to make your car even better and faster. I would suggest a set of good drop in pistons and an Aquamist kit. With those improvements you will be able to safely realize the full potential of the ATP turbo and have a reliable set up.
Al
I just ordered ohlins flags for my car. And now figuiring out what to do with the motor. I am going to go B.C./darton 2.7 or Cosworth. I dont really trust just dropping in pistons into this block. The bores look perfect. But I never trust a bad engine. It like buy crash motorcycle parts from a bike that the rider got killed on. Yeah the parts might be cheap. But its got bad juju...

Read about my car Al You will see how level headed I was before I pointed the finger.
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Old 06-07-2009, 01:29 PM   #17
EGY5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 06STi View Post
My engine mods are
OEM STi short block (3k miles break in)
ARP head studs
PE Timing Belt
Cosworth oil pump
Cosworth timing belt guides
Cosworth air pump deletes
NGK 1-step Colder Plugs
wally 255 fuel pump
Perrin V1 fuel rails
Dtwrk's 740's
ATP GT3076R
HKS Downpipe / modded for atp ewg
JIC Ti Catback
APS FMIC
APS BOV
APS 70mm CAI
All these parts brand new, except the JIC I bought used off the forum. But it had less then 500 miles on it.
Stock headers / up-pipe
Stock intake manifold
Stock TGV's
I'm really sorry to hear about what happened, but did Crawford advise you on purchasing parts for your car?

You bought parts like ARP head studs, timing belts, oil pump, and FUEL rails, but didn't bother with pistons? I feel like at some point someone had to have brought the stock piston issue, and how useless some of those other parts were for a GT3076R.

I can certainly see why you'd be upset with their customer service. No one wants to have **** blow up and a shop leave them high and dry. Every shop and business in the history of the world makes mistakes, and you know the good ones because they are the ones that will work with you to fix the problem.

That being said, I'm not exactly sure how its a surprise or why you are upset that you have a GT3076R and you blew your stock pistons No tune/builder in the world is going to stop that from happening.
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Old 06-07-2009, 01:33 PM   #18
06STi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waynoSTI View Post
dude i won't take sides here but your both at falt!
there CS does suck for people with low budget builds they have way bigger fish to fry! but they should call and reach some sort of agreement!

but dude once your car isn't running right you don't go to the strip! or if you here a funny noise you stop your car and call a tow truck, not make it home!

it sucks what happened but it might have been avoided who knows who's to blame? but i'm sure refunding your money won't put a dent in there wallet! GL man!
I live in a area where it is very hard to road log. That was the safest place to go at the time.
I was logging the car. Once the problem was seen in the log files we stopped running the car. I had like two passes. Saw the logs and was like wow.. time to stop.

Oh and once the engine goes. It doesnt matter if you call the tow truck or not. Its done.

As far as low budget builds? read up on my car, its not a "cheap" build
Also if they had better customer service, They would have had a nice engine sale.
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Old 06-07-2009, 03:03 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by 06STi View Post

Read about my car Al You will see how level headed I was before I pointed the finger.
My comments were not so much directed at you in particular as a general observation and message to others reading the thread

Given your background and experience, it seems you are in a perfect position to have reviewed the mechanical aspects of the car for problems and also have reviewed the data logs to determine what went wrong.

Do you have an opinion BTW of specifically what was amiss - e.g. over boosting, etc ?

You seem most reasonable in your request for a refund on only the tuning.

91 octane in cali is certainly a challenge and I would not advise anyone to run a big turbo and stock pistons. IMHO its asking for piston failure.

At this point, there is no reason why you can not simply split the cases you have and have a competent machine shop with a deck plate properly hone the bores to match a new set of pistons. I think that using your existing block / crank with better pistons and rods with some Cosworth bearings would be a very good and more economical solution.

Of course the options you mention to purchase for example a totally new Cosworth short block are also great ideas, there is no reason why your existing crank and cases can not be re-used (provided you have them checked out by a competent machine shop).

If your going to go with a totally new short block - let me know I would be interested to buy your blown one as a core.

Al

PS - I will review all the posts and threads you have referenced later.

Best of luck and don't loose your passion!
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Old 06-07-2009, 03:28 PM   #20
godforbid67
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After reading all this, I would say your both at fault. Its just not smart to run a big turbo on stock pistons on 91, as Al stated. How much boost? I dont think I read that anywhere. Also, again, I would also never use an email tune for a set up that needs to be spot on. A big turbo, stock pistons and 91 need to be a damn precise and good tune to make the proper power and not blow up. I do agree with you though, they should pay you back for the tune.

Chris
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Old 06-07-2009, 03:52 PM   #21
Zumble
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I agree, this type of setup should NOT be email tuned. I would maybe consider an exception provided you have your own tuning experience and grasp of how the ECU works, Boost gauge with warning, egt with warning and wideband display in the car. The first pull I would have a buddy drive the car and I would watch the DAM and knock correction on a laptop to verify. I wouldn't do email tunes for anything more than stage 2.

Anyways, the tuner should have known not to attempt this, he should refund your money for the tune if even to save his own reputation. I think Bill and Crawford are in a unique situation because they don't need your money. They actually build winning race cars.

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Originally Posted by godforbid67 View Post
After reading all this, I would say your both at fault. Its just not smart to run a big turbo on stock pistons on 91, as Al stated. How much boost? I dont think I read that anywhere. Also, again, I would also never use an email tune for a set up that needs to be spot on. A big turbo, stock pistons and 91 need to be a damn precise and good tune to make the proper power and not blow up. I do agree with you though, they should pay you back for the tune.

Chris
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Old 06-07-2009, 04:39 PM   #22
crand002
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Just a thought, are you 100% sure your timing belt was installed correctly?
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Old 06-07-2009, 05:07 PM   #23
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...post deleted after reading 4 pages of mud slinging. I am out of this one.

Sighhhh

Last edited by cpturbo; 06-08-2009 at 01:32 AM. Reason: IBTL
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Old 06-07-2009, 05:23 PM   #24
06STi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crand002 View Post
Just a thought, are you 100% sure your timing belt was installed correctly?

Yes. Timing was checked when tear down was done. Timing belt and engine was done at gst motorsports.

B.t.w. Crawford was told about my pistons. And to hint you on my driving style, I was running a stock 5spd for over 100k miles. @ 310 whp.
... That 5spd was pulled for the 6spd and bigger turbo. I ended up selling the 5spd to someone that is still using it.

So you can see I know how to treat my equipment.
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Old 06-07-2009, 05:23 PM   #25
bgod
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Come on people, why are you critiquing this guy's set-up.

Whether or not he was on stock pistons or forged has nothing to do with the topic.

Obviously stock pistons are recommended. However, it's not like he got at least some mileage out of the shortblock with his recent set-up.



The car was initially tuned at Crawford which he paid $500 for. The following email tunes were emailed by the tuner as he obviously felt he could fix the problem by making minor changes.


Screw shops and their liability. This is the problem with the aftermarket car industry in general. Everyone is quick to take your money but the customer service and/or guarantees go straight out the window if there is a problem.


If the tuner felt there was an issue with the motor or set-up, he should have never tuned the car initially at his facility let alone email multiple tunes/maps to try and solve the problem.


I feel for you. Just an agonizing situation.

Good luck with whichever route you go.
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