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Old 08-05-2003, 05:49 PM   #1
JC
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Default Should I stop modding the engine now?

I think I'm hitting the point of diminishing returns as far as hp/$ now. I'm probably gonna go with a swap at some point, but that is probably a few years away. I want more power but I don't think spending upwards of $500 for cams (which seems like the next logical step) would be worth it. Opinions? ( No NAWWWS either. )

Current / installed within the month power mods:

Cobb Tuning Intake
Mr. Josh LW pulley
MRT headers/cat
Custom midpipe
Greddy EVO Axle-back
Exedy Clutch / LW Flywheel

JC
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Old 08-05-2003, 07:34 PM   #2
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What about doing an ecu? its $$$ but you more then likely would use it if you do a swap or go turbo. Also, 8complex net'd a roaddyno'd 20hp (iirc) from his haltec on his just intake and mufflered car because of tuneing.
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Old 08-05-2003, 07:38 PM   #3
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I second that, you will probably have to go that way eventually, might as well do it now.
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Old 08-05-2003, 07:41 PM   #4
Dr Ken
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I just visited your web site and see your extensive and impressive list of mods. Yes, it seems the decision of $100 per HP gain to stay NA is a toughy. Especially, when you think of $30-60 per HP with taking the plunge into FI. The choice of Cams are pretty specific (either NA or FI) and chosen with future mode of induction in mind. I don't know much about polishing the heads and ports and stuff. One idea may be to get yourself a potent stand-alone ECU - one with room to incorporate a future FI - such a Link plus. I think the gains, even while staying NA are maybe an extra 12-ishHP per $1200 (but again about $100 per HP, or so). There are cheaper ECUs, but this wouldn't steer you away from the FI possibilities of yourself or a future owner of your current RS.

I dunno, are we going to soften and eventually go w/an STi within a few years....and should simply save up for early trade in??? I'm gonna guess this is an unpalatable potential for you . Its hard to stick with the ol' school and not get HP-envy....
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Old 08-05-2003, 08:13 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by DoctorNick
What about doing an ecu? its $$$ but you more then likely would use it if you do a swap or go turbo. Also, 8complex net'd a roaddyno'd 20hp (iirc) from his haltec on his just intake and mufflered car because of tuneing.
Well buying the management is not the problem (well it is, I'm a broke ass yet again), tuning it is. I don't know anyone who tunes N/A RS'. I have been considering it though. I might wait til next summer and see if Vishnu can do something with it.

Quote:
Originally posted by Dr Ken
I just visited your web site and see your extensive and impressive list of mods.
Is that sarcastic?

Quote:
Originally posted by Dr Ken
I dunno, are we going to soften and eventually go w/an STi within a few years....and should simply save up for early trade in??? I'm gonna guess this is an unpalatable potential for you . Its hard to stick with the ol' school and not get HP-envy....
Actually I think I am gonna pick up an STi in a few years. Maybe 3 yrs or so, but that's a long time to wait for power. Plus I'm keeping the RS regardless, I just can't let her go. I've been really close to selling it and picking up a WRX a few times, but I can never bring myself to do it.

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Old 08-05-2003, 08:31 PM   #6
Dr Ken
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hey no, I'm not sarcastic.
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Old 08-05-2003, 08:40 PM   #7
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Take it this way, you have seen my antics on MWIC. I am a moron and I am gonna have to learn to tune my car. I honestly don't think its that hard. You need the proper gauges (which most of us would have) and a N/A map to play with. Hoenstly, there are plenty of N/A link plus maps out there to play with. Midwayman has one I know forsure. I also know 8complex has a haltec N/A map for the 02 with almost the same mods.

And honestly, N/A is more forgiving for a bad tune. Besides that, if you get good at it, you can start to charge people. All tuners have to start somewhere.
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Old 08-05-2003, 09:46 PM   #8
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You can get the throttle body bored out, helps out a bit with throttle response and with the improved intake/exhaust you already have the gains should certainly be bigger on your car than mine.
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Old 08-05-2003, 11:30 PM   #9
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If you don't want to get into tuning and are worried about deminished returns, it might be a good idea to look at parting her out and trading her in for a WRX or STI. It's all dependant on what your goals and limitations are.

I know that I want the fastesterest car possible without going so far that I start breaking gears. I also don't want to do the stand alone managment because I have no idea how to do it and would like to keep my car as reliable as possible. Because of this, I'm stopping where I am now, and/or might get some Cobb cams if a good opportunity arises...again.
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Old 08-07-2003, 02:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Keiho
You can get the throttle body bored out, helps out a bit with throttle response and with the improved intake/exhaust you already have the gains should certainly be bigger on your car than mine.
From who? How much?

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Old 08-07-2003, 03:19 AM   #11
Keiho
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Err umm...Cobb used to do it. Technik Motorwerks here in Vancouver used to do it...I'm not sure if either places still do. Worth a shot.

Or just find a reputable machinist mechanic dude and have him do it. Specs for the Cobb one if I recall correctly is 65mm. Make sure you get a new butterfly plate or whatever that is needs to be replaced.
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Old 08-07-2003, 01:59 PM   #12
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JC, my advice is:

- DIY the TB, port/polish and taper to the butterfly but no further.
- Port-match the intake manifold (also DIY-able)
- Get a GReddy E-Manage, used if possible, as it is much less than a standalone and will transition very nicely to the F/I world. Plan on the main unit, ignition, and injection harnesses, the cable/software and later you can add the boost sensor and harness. I picked mine up (same parts as listed above) for $250 from a NASIOCer and I know they've gone for less than that.

If you do decide to get cams, get the Cobb street cams (or similar w/ high lift, low overlap) as they will transition fine to forced induction. P&P'ed heads don't make sense yet... unless you've got a good machine shop hookup.
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Old 08-07-2003, 03:46 PM   #13
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Golly, how does a guy learn how to DIY P/P the TB? Or do you just go at it with a dremel and some SoftScrub? That TB is an unexplored territory for me, like bipass and phenolic spacers... and what's the risk factor of mucking things up while learning?
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Old 08-07-2003, 04:25 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dr Ken
Golly, how does a guy learn how to DIY P/P the TB? Or do you just go at it with a dremel and some SoftScrub?
That's about it Just don't mess with the area right by the butterfly.
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Old 08-07-2003, 04:46 PM   #15
JC
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Quote:
Originally posted by BOY
- Get a GReddy E-Manage, used if possible, as it is much less than a standalone and will transition very nicely to the F/I world. Plan on the main unit, ignition, and injection harnesses, the cable/software and later you can add the boost sensor and harness. I picked mine up (same parts as listed above) for $250 from a NASIOCer and I know they've gone for less than that.
How hard is it to tune? Seems like only ~$350 new. The cable/software sold seperately?

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Old 08-07-2003, 05:12 PM   #16
BOY
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that's only for the main unit... the accessories and software are extra.

[here I go again]The E-Manage main unit is a very simple dial operated AFC, add the software and you get 16x16 map resolution for air flow meter correction, addtional injector duty cycle, and ignition timing. Built in to the software are global injector correction, anti engine stall, and boost cut (both voltage clamps, one for postive manifold pressure (boost) and one to stabilize idle). Tuning is very intuitive and the E-Manage has data logging (graphs) of each of its functions. Airflow correction (MAF/MAP) +/- 50%, additional injector duty cycle 0-100% above factory setting, ignition timing +/- 20 degrees.[/here I go again]

Seriously, tuning is a piece of cake. There are some basic strategies that apply to any aftermarket engine control, and required gauges (EGT a must, A/F a plus). Check out http://www.mohdparts.com/emanage/ for info and the best service/support in the country (and pretty much the best prices too!).
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Old 08-07-2003, 08:14 PM   #17
JC
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Quote:
Originally posted by BOY
that's only for the main unit... the accessories and software are extra.

[here I go again]The E-Manage main unit is a very simple dial operated AFC, add the software and you get 16x16 map resolution for air flow meter correction, addtional injector duty cycle, and ignition timing. Built in to the software are global injector correction, anti engine stall, and boost cut (both voltage clamps, one for postive manifold pressure (boost) and one to stabilize idle). Tuning is very intuitive and the E-Manage has data logging (graphs) of each of its functions. Airflow correction (MAF/MAP) +/- 50%, additional injector duty cycle 0-100% above factory setting, ignition timing +/- 20 degrees.[/here I go again]

Seriously, tuning is a piece of cake. There are some basic strategies that apply to any aftermarket engine control, and required gauges (EGT a must, A/F a plus). Check out http://www.mohdparts.com/emanage/ for info and the best service/support in the country (and pretty much the best prices too!).
It's definitely something I'll look into. It's cheaper at Gruppe-S though.

http://www.gruppe-s.com/Greddy/greddyelec.htm

JC
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Old 08-08-2003, 09:19 AM   #18
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Email Mohd, see if he'll match/beat the prices. Mohd's a pretty cool guy, supports the Yahoo group and has compiled the most info of anyone else... granted, if Gruppe-S is still cheaper, by all means buy from them but keep Mohd in mind for info, sw/firmware upgrades, etc.
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Old 08-08-2003, 12:03 PM   #19
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I'm gonna be the outlyer here, but I say get the cams. If you get something like Cobb's mild street cam, you'll get another 14hp out of the engine. Furthermore, the grind is mild enough, that if you go with a turbo kit down the road, you won't need to change them out because there is not too much overlap and blow by will not be an issue. Also, if you do sell the car to get an STi, you won't have any problem smogging it for resale and keeping it legal in the eyes of the man

The throttle body is a waste of money. I expect Cobb will tell you this. Further research and time on the flow bench has shown them that the bottle neck is the intake runners and unless they are fully ported and polished (which to be done right requires cutting them and rewelding them because they bend so much) a bigger throttle body won't do diddly.
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Old 08-08-2003, 01:28 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by Matt Monson
I'm gonna be the outlyer here, but I say get the cams. If you get something like Cobb's mild street cam, you'll get another 14hp out of the engine. Furthermore, the grind is mild enough, that if you go with a turbo kit down the road, you won't need to change them out because there is not too much overlap and blow by will not be an issue. Also, if you do sell the car to get an STi, you won't have any problem smogging it for resale and keeping it legal in the eyes of the man

The throttle body is a waste of money. I expect Cobb will tell you this. Further research and time on the flow bench has shown them that the bottle neck is the intake runners and unless they are fully ported and polished (which to be done right requires cutting them and rewelding them because they bend so much) a bigger throttle body won't do diddly.
I think we all agree with you but Cams are pricey, even if he's doing the install himself. I'm running Cobb Street cams with my RS-T and the make up alot for my tiny turbo. The TB is a simple DIY that you can do over the course of an hour or two depending on how much of a perfectionist you are. Cheap, free (albeit negligable) hp... can do the TB coolant bypass at the same time. There's lots of free/cheap tweaks beyond bolt ons. Sure they don't add up to much but every bit helps. Also, Cobb will agree that electronics are the MAJOR bottleneck of any EJ motor.
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Old 08-08-2003, 02:12 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by Matt Monson
I'm gonna be the outlyer here, but I say get the cams. If you get something like Cobb's mild street cam, you'll get another 14hp out of the engine. Furthermore, the grind is mild enough, that if you go with a turbo kit down the road, you won't need to change them out because there is not too much overlap and blow by will not be an issue. Also, if you do sell the car to get an STi, you won't have any problem smogging it for resale and keeping it legal in the eyes of the man

The throttle body is a waste of money. I expect Cobb will tell you this. Further research and time on the flow bench has shown them that the bottle neck is the intake runners and unless they are fully ported and polished (which to be done right requires cutting them and rewelding them because they bend so much) a bigger throttle body won't do diddly.
IF I keep modding, I'll do all three.

JC
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Old 08-08-2003, 02:12 PM   #22
BOY
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Quote:
Originally posted by JC


WHEN I keep modding, I'll do all three.

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Old 08-08-2003, 02:15 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by BOY
It's either keep modding or I'm trying to get a new car.

JC
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Old 08-08-2003, 03:38 PM   #24
Matt Monson
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If you're gonna DIY the TB, then by all means get some free HP. But when we're talking $350+ for an AFC, which has historically been shown to battle the learning ECU, and need constant baby-sitting vs. a $500 cam, I think the cam is money better spent, assuming you don't need to pay the labour.

And if Cobbs NA ECU re-flash ever gets back from the programmers and is no longer "Vapour-Ware" there's another 7-10 hp to be had without having to deal with any wiriing issues or the like. Way cheaper than buying a stand alone or piggy back.
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Old 08-08-2003, 07:44 PM   #25
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I agree that cams are an excellent bang for the buck. Ther re-flash (if it shows up) would also be a very smart bet as well. If I were you, cams would be my next investment. It was the most noticeable power mod I did to my car when it was at the same point as yours.

Good luck man, and I agree, its tough staying old school and not getting just a bit envious. But I think being part of a small breed outweighs it. I love the fact that I never see another Impreza within the same 1-month period.

Dan
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