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Old 08-13-2002, 10:43 AM   #1
camdoc
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Default TurboXS Stage 2 loss of power in 4th gear

OK, I thought my car was running pretty good, I noticed what I thought was a big difference in performance with the TurboXS Stage 2 upgrade, and I know the upgrade took 0.50 seconds off of the 1/8 mile time (no 1/4 mile track close by)

Until last night. I ran a WRX sedan with a BOV, AEM CAI and a turboback system with no cats at all (stock up-pipe though), and I pulled him through the top of third gear, then he slowly pulled past me all through 4 gear.

What's up with this, I should be making a lot more power, and it should really show in high gears. Both cars were 5-speeds, and we shifted about the same time, since I heard his BOV go off as I was finishing my shift.

Any ideas why I should be down on power as mph increase? I don't think the aerodynamics of the wagon are that much different to cause this.
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Old 08-13-2002, 04:37 PM   #2
02WRX_BLUE
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What boost level did he run? I am sure he didn't run with stock BC.....
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Old 08-13-2002, 04:45 PM   #3
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Did he shift out of gear earlier or later? Little stuff like that matters... He almost might have been running higher boost too.
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Old 08-13-2002, 06:30 PM   #4
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Street racing is a horrible way to judge the performance of your car. There are far too many factors to consider there.

-MAX
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Old 08-14-2002, 09:42 AM   #5
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I looked over his car very carefully, no MBC, I'm certain of it.

As far as shift points, I don't buy that. If our cars we're dead even as far as mods, I would, but they are quite different.

Conclusion -> UNICHIP is a waste of money. There is something wrong with the calibration if it chops power in 4th.

:monkey: FS 1 slightly used UNICHIP

The exhaust and MBC are worthwhile, but save your money on the rest of the package and do it yourself.
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Old 08-14-2002, 03:38 PM   #6
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Are U running proper level of Boost? It should be around 16.5 psi under WOT using 4th gear (I hope U are not using MBC in replacement of UNICHIP and ABC for boost control).

If the other guy was just running stock level (13.5psi), then your car is FREAK or something caused ECU to pull timing dramatically to slow your car down. (Knock sensor caused ECU to pull timing ...etc)

You were running 3 psi higher and the other guy and there isn't any reason why you shouldn't have pulled..........

Something is not right???!! Unichip??? or your boost level?

Dan from PA
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Old 08-14-2002, 03:58 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by 02WRX_BLUE
Are U running proper level of Boost? It should be around 16.5 psi under WOT using 4th gear (I hope U are not using MBC in replacement of UNICHIP and ABC for boost control).
Yes, I'm making just about 17psi, and you're right, I'm not using the MBC for boost control (not yet at least)

Quote:

If the other guy was just running stock level (13.5psi), then your car is FREAK or something caused ECU to pull timing dramatically to slow your car down. (Knock sensor caused ECU to pull timing ...etc)
I've had it to the track, and it runs 8.90s in the 1/8, which roughly translates to mid to high 13s in the quarter, so I thought everything was OK, but that was in cooler weather. I'm thinking that knock retard came into play here, but, why shouldn't both cars have the same problem? I'm starting to think that the Unichip is great for making dyno numbers, and may be the dragstip too, but it's not cutting it otherwise.

Interesting observation, the car still runs pig rich, just like it did without the Unichip, however, after a high mph blast, all of the carbon is burned clean off of the tailpipe. This bothers me since it needs to get pretty warm for this to occur.

Quote:

You were running 3 psi higher and the other guy and there isn't any reason why you shouldn't have pulled..........

Something is not right???!! Unichip??? or your boost level?

Dan from PA

I looked at the TXS website today and they're showing the stage 2 up 5 horsepower over the advertised numbers when I bought mine. Has TXS released a new "improved" cal for the stage 2? The car still "feels" strong, however I know butt dynos are unreliable, and the 3000-3500rpm bog seems worse, I thought it was due to the hot weather, but may be something is wrong.
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Old 08-14-2002, 04:33 PM   #8
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8.9 in the eight with a chip? OUCH!!!!! I run 8.5 with just turboxs stealthback, atr uppipe, txs hpmbc(15psi-4 gear pull), resonator removed and a turboxs rfl. Are you driving it right? 8.9 in the eight is about 13.8-13.9 which can be achieved with just an mbc. Is everything installed correctly?
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Old 08-14-2002, 04:43 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by BamBooI
8.9 in the eight with a chip? OUCH!!!!! I run 8.5 with just turboxs stealthback, atr uppipe, txs hpmbc(15psi-4 gear pull), resonator removed and a turboxs rfl. Are you driving it right? 8.9 in the eight is about 13.8-13.9 which can be achieved with just an mbc. Is everything installed correctly?

I watched two different stock WRXs run 9.50 - 9.60 at the same strip, with 1.90 60s, I have no idea how good the timers are, it's a pretty low budget operation.

Like I said, I think the Unichip is junk. The Stage 2 kit is a no brainer to install, it's just a turbo-back exhaust (took longer to put the car up on jacks than it did to replace the exhaust, it's a very nice, high quality system)

and an MBC, nothing too tough here

and the Unichip, plug and play

and taking out the resonator and putting in a K&N, which is all part of the kit

I've had several ASE cert's in the past, so this upgrade wasn't too challenging to install

I beginning to think I should trade it for a mustang
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Old 08-14-2002, 05:01 PM   #10
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Practice on getting 1.8 sixty foot times. Others have run 9.0 in the eighth stock. I ran a 9.2 stock. Its hard launching a stock car imo. Do you have an uppipe? Do you think you could have melted the cat in your uppipe? Just a thought.
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Old 08-14-2002, 05:05 PM   #11
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I think the problem is you just do not understand the computer... which frankly has nothing to do with the unichip... the unichip is an intercepter...

Meaning... Garbage in, garbage out... if the computer feels like being in a pissy mood to begin with and pulling timing.. then the unichip will extrapolate that effect by pulling on THAT timing, as opposed to what it would prefer timing to be at...

Do a search for call to arms from 6 months back, and grab a 6 pack of beer if you REALLY wanna understand what's wrong with your car....

Jorge (RiftsWRX)
www.ProjectWRX.com
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Old 08-14-2002, 05:10 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by BamBooI
Practice on getting 1.8 sixty foot times. Others have run 9.0 in the eighth stock. I ran a 9.2 stock. Its hard launching a stock car imo. Do you have an uppipe? Do you think you could have melted the cat in your uppipe? Just a thought.
I don't have an uppipe, how could I tell if the cat's cooked?

The problem I had wasn't at the strip, I was happy with the dragstrip performance, and I wasn't really trying to see how well I could do there, just went to make sure everything was working. You're right, a 1.80 60' should put me around 8.70 or so.

The issues I had was being able to pull someone in 3rd, then getting walked on in 4th. Like 02WRX_BLUE said, may be it's knock sensor activity. It definitely didn't make the same amount of power in 4th.

Jorge, checked out the thread, thanks for the info, this should give me plenty to work with.

Thanks to everyone for the input, my faith in Unichip has been restored

Last edited by camdoc; 08-14-2002 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 08-14-2002, 09:20 PM   #13
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So why did jorge restore your faith? Let us know. Did the other guy have uppipe? Later! Also with stage 2 you should be around 8.5 or better. I know sgoswrx was at like low to mid 13s with his stage 2.
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Old 08-14-2002, 11:28 PM   #14
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In my opinion, it was the boost setting. I speculate that it was too high to cause a knock... then the timing was pulled from ECU to prevent detonation.

When Unichip was tuned it was reference to mild to cool weather outside not for the summer! So, if the weather outside is hot, the boost level decrease due to the temperature as well as the humidity. Remember WRX has temp as well as barometer sensor to calculate the mass of air that MAF reads...

So, if you set the boost at 17 psi on a hot day, it is like running 19 psi on a cold day.... Of course, your A/F ratio will be altered to LEAN and that might have caused a KNOCK!!!!

If I were you, I would set the boost using ABC right on @ 16.5 or 16 psi on 4th gear.. The stage 4 should hold this boost until 5K rpm... then alters down...

I would first close the ABC all the way and see what max boost I get. Then turn may be at the most 3 turns to dial in for 16.5 psi...
(if you have to turn more to get the 16.5 psi, I would contact TURBOXS for advise)..

----Cool night would be the best time to do it during the summer time.... Try it! I bet it would make the difference.....
Once the boost is set......... DO NOT change your boost setting.. It is alright to get slightly lower boost when the weather gets warmer/hotter...

That's just my opinion of what happened without any data logging from your car...


Dan from PA.
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Old 08-15-2002, 09:12 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by 02WRX_BLUE
In my opinion, it was the boost setting. I speculate that it was too high to cause a knock... then the timing was pulled from ECU to prevent detonation.
Yes, I completely agree, and this was some of what I understood from the "CALL TO ARMS" thread. This makes sense if I lost to a car making stock boost levels, especially as the engine got hot as the event continued.....


Quote:

If I were you, I would set the boost using ABC right on @ 16.5 or 16 psi on 4th gear.. The stage 4 should hold this boost until 5K rpm... then alters down...

I would first close the ABC all the way and see what max boost I get. Then turn may be at the most 3 turns to dial in for 16.5 psi...
(if you have to turn more to get the 16.5 psi, I would contact TURBOXS for advise)..

The cute little boost controller that came with the stage 2 kit is turned all the way in (CW) and I'm making 17psi of boost, don't forget I'm at sea level to maybe +60ft here. If I turn the screw out (CCW), according to the directions, it says the boost will go up. So, I'm thinking I either need to talk to the guys at TXS, or put another boost controller that will allow me to trim boost as a function of RPM, but that's why I bought the unchip, I don't want a StarWars dash.

Can you think of a cost effective way to do this, short of getting a custom cal? I think you've nailed the problem, now I've got to fix it.

How about a bigger intercooler (lower inlet air temps = less knock?) Not real cost effective, but I wouldn't mind doing this. How about the uppipe? I'm not sure this will help, may make the problem worse if I can't get my boost down.

With pump fuel, I know my car won't run low 13s with this set-up. I mix toluene with pump fuel in another car I own, and it does wonders for knock retard, but I really don't trust the fuel system in the WRX, and I'd rather avoid homebrew. With 100 octane, I'd probably be much faster, but I live in east BFE, and I can't get good fuel.
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Old 08-15-2002, 10:01 AM   #16
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I would give TXS a ring...it can't hurt. It just seems odd you're getting 17 lbs with the ABC all the way in on a hot day. I know you're at sea level, but I've read about most people with TXS S2 getting 14-14.5 off the bat, and needing to open the ABS a few cranks, and they've been at sea level too. I'll see on Saturday what happens with mine when I do the install. I should have the same results as Dan if the equipment is manufactured the same, since he lives the same place I do, so atmosphere will be identical (I guess we are just a tad above sea level).

Jeff
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Old 08-15-2002, 10:03 AM   #17
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If you don't mind spending $, Yes, I would suggest to get the aftermarket intercooler.

While you are at it, get the uppipe installed and send UNICHIP back to TURBOXS guys to remap for stage3.....

That's what I have except I have APS TMIC with APS silicon hose and SAMCO hose from IC to throttle body...

I would list all the mods you have on your car and send it to TURBOXS rather than saying "Stage3 map please"...

When it comes back it will say "Stage2 + TMIC" since they have not officially released Stage3 map yet. They've added 6% more fuel to the stage2 map (comfirmed with Mark) to compensate for the TMIC and uppipe.. So, it will definitely help you avoid "KNOCK"... Not only that it runs the best @ 16 psi...

I've ran this setup for about 1K miles and I love it.. It also runs a little richer than optimum A/F ratio... which I don't mind since EGT is lower and decrease the chance of getting detonation compared to the map that are running leaner..

Dan from PA.


BTW: I assumed that you were getting knock based on the fact that you were pulling on him through 3rd gear but not @ the 4th gear.. The 3rd gear in general has slightly lower (15.5 to 16 psi) in terms of max boost than 4th gear.. But, I can not believe you were hitting 17 psi in hot summer day with ABC closed fully even though you were at sea level. May be, you need to check with TURBOXS guys.. The stage2 map should only hit max of 16.5 psi or lesser from 3k through 5k RPM range.
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Old 08-15-2002, 10:24 AM   #18
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Dan

Thanks for the info, it sounds like the early-stage 3 upgrade will probably help out.

As far as the boost numbers, I calibrated my Autometer gauge at work, after hearing lots of bad things about them. Turns out, the gauge was reading 1psi low, meaning when the gauge read 16psi, when there was actually 17psi of static pressure applied to it. I have confidence in the gauge now, although I did not actually try to take it apart and move the needle, I know when it's reading 16psi, I'm making 17psi, maybe this is why some people think they're making "only 16psi"

I have another car with the same type of boost gauge, and it also read 1psi less, I don't know if I got some weird gauges from autometer, but 2 for 2 read the same way.

I took the boost controller out last night, and it didn't change anything, just as you'd expect if it was screwed all the way in. The car runs real good in the cold weather, and it's usually cold here, this weather is just a fluke right now.

Did you have the stage 2 on before your upgrade? If so, what's your impression of the difference? Is it noticeable or sublte?

A friend of mine just fed his uppipe cat to his turbo, and it wasn't pretty, so I want to get the uppipe out asap!

Thanks again for your help.
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Old 08-15-2002, 10:48 AM   #19
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No I did not have stage2 before although I have drvien WRX with stage 2 many times.

The reason why I didn't have the stage2 was the fact that I was as fast as the one who had stage2.

At the time, I only had GodSpeed Uppipe, TURBOXS turboback, silencer mod, and TURBOXS HPBC runing @ 16 psi.

Then, I realized aftermarket IC was needed since my stocker was getting heat soaked very often... that led me to lower the boost level to 15 psi without aftermarket IC... While the power was a little slower compared to 16 psi, I was still getting EGT around 1500 - 1600 level and I could see the IC getting heat soaked again (less frequent --- I tested this through RT 23 : gladwin to conshohocken - Best road in Philly area for REX -- Hilly & twisty road )... I thought stock IC would cool down if I was runing at consistant speed... but it really didn't.. I could feel the hot spot near the turbo!!!!

So, I bought APS TMIC and silicon hose from follow I-CLUB member "CO WRX". It made a hugh difference in terms of "HEAT soaking".. I ran couple of times thorugh RT23 and IC was actually cool to touch (No hot spots!) when it was 86F degrees outside.. To my surprise it also did make slightly more power through MID - High range. But the EGT was still high around 1500 to 1600 at times..

So, I seek for the professional help! TURBOXS unichip early Stage3 map (StageII + TMIC) (Running @ 16 psi max on 4th gear).

The MID range improvement is evident (I ran with Stage2 car and pulled about 2 car length by the end of 4th gear) while EGT never exceeded 1500 F... Overall, I am very pleased with my current setup now.. The best part is the "CONSISTANCY"... Being able to run solid everytime!!!!!

Dan from PA.
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Old 09-02-2002, 03:34 PM   #20
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Make sure the airbox lid clips are in the right spot. I experienced power loss at high rpm due to me not locking air box correctly. This lets hot air get drawn in. Should not be able to move lid at all once you clip the lid. Very easy to not line up lower tabs.
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Old 09-02-2002, 04:20 PM   #21
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First thing I would do is get rid of the abc and get Turboxs's high performance boost controller. I did not like the Unichip with the abc setup. With a good high performance boost controller you will see a significant increase in peformance.
I averaged anywhere from 8.40 - 8.73 in the 1/8 mile with Turboxs stage 2 setup using their high performance boost controller. My best 1/4 mile time was 13.33 @ 100 mph.

Everyone I know that is running good times is using a high performance boost controller and not the abc bleeder valve.
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Old 09-03-2002, 11:37 AM   #22
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SGO,
If his problem of poor performance is actually being caused by knock, wouldn't the HPMBC make the problem worse, since this controller won't taper boost according to revs and have different boost limits in different gears? The only way I see the HPMBC helping is if he is actually boosting too high with the ABC closed then you could maybe "limit" boost with the HPMBC to a lower level...but then again, the factors I said above still come into play. For reliability/longevity, I've got to think that getting the ABC working is the best route.
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Old 09-03-2002, 03:25 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by ezatnova
SGO,
If his problem of poor performance is actually being caused by knock, wouldn't the HPMBC make the problem worse, since this controller won't taper boost according to revs and have different boost limits in different gears? The only way I see the HPMBC helping is if he is actually boosting too high with the ABC closed then you could maybe "limit" boost with the HPMBC to a lower level...but then again, the factors I said above still come into play. For reliability/longevity, I've got to think that getting the ABC working is the best route.
I dought he's getting any knock with the abc and the boost levels he's running. I would first makes sure the car is running ok. If it is then switch to the hpmbc.
Yes the abc is a safer way to go but its also a much slower way to go. The abc setup really does hurt performance. Everyone that I know with a modded WRX is using a high performance boost controller. I used the abc for about a week. My car didn't feel much faster with the abc. When I put the HPMBC on my car I felt it. My average decrease in the 1/8 mile was .2-.4 tenth switching to the hpmcbc vs the abc. The difference is night and day. Especially in 1st gear. Boost comes on faster/harder/longer. I been using one for about 12 months with no problems at all.
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Old 09-03-2002, 03:32 PM   #24
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I bet it would be wild to feel that much more boost in the first couple of gears... but, I'd still be scared of the longevity and safety of doing it (including EGTs, which I don't have a guage for). I am thinking of long term (5-6 years) reliability since I'll be paying for the car for years to come....and it's my transportation to work and whatnot. I'm surprised you were dissapointed in the power increase with just the ABC. I can notice a boatload of a difference than stock with the ABC and my stage 2. Even passing in 5th gear at normal highway speeds is much easier now.
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Old 09-03-2002, 04:46 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally posted by camdoc
something wrong with the calibration if it chops power in 4th.

:monkey: FS 1 slightly used UNICHIP

The exhaust and MBC are worthwhile, but save your money on the rest of the package and do it yourself.
Concluding that the unichip is a waste of money because of a street race?

Do you know how many factors go into a street race?

I don't think you deserve to own a unichip, so I would get rid of it
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