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Old 12-03-2002, 03:00 PM   #51
Vishnu Performance
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Quote:
Originally posted by driggity
I've got a few questions related to the ECU's learning ability that kind of fit in here.

First off I assume that becuase of this learning ability and the wide range of maps that can be in the ECU there isn't any real performance degradation because of the fact that the ECU is originally tuned on California's sucky gas. I also assume that the ECU will still be able to easily handle a bad tank of gas if that happens for some reason.

The second question is related to the extra power that is seen on subsequent dyno pulls with the stock ECU. How come this power isn't being "released" when on the street? Does the ECU just need a number of WOT runs to up timing and do whatever else it does to create this power? And how long does this extra power last? Will it just go away after some normal street driving?

Third is about how the reflashed ECU communicates with ODB-II devices. Here in Washington (and I believe in other states as well) cars manufactured after '97 (I think) won't be getting a sniffer test for emission but will a reader plugged into the ODB-II interface. Any idea what will happen when they plug into the reflashed ECU? And on a related note will these ECU still throw cat-inefficency CELs if they're programmed for a car with at catless exhaust?

Thanks.
The learning ability of the factory ECU is outstanding. It is easily able to quickly and safely compensate for bad tanks of gas, extraordinary bouts of heatsoak or anything else you can through at it. Far more adaptable than any other programmable ECU I've ever tuned.

The power is behing released, through re-mapping, by a number of means. First the active knock correction maps are given more authority range at those rpm/load points that can use them. In essence, we're allowing the factory ECU to become more aggressive with timing while not influencing its sensitivity to knock. That, alone, really makes me happy. There are a few other ways we improve output such as base timing manipulations where we fill in a few big dips and smoothen out parts of the map here timing used to jump all over the place. This, again, makes life easier on the active knock control system-- improving repeatability and shorting response time. Fuel and boost target re-mapping has also been done but that takes a bit of time to explain. We're also looking into changing a few temp compensations to alleviate some of the variability we see on stock cars when temp/altitude changes. One thing we saw with the factory mapping is that, at higher altitudes, the MAP-activated fuel cut is set considerably lower than it is at sea level. Explains why folks in Colorado have a tougher time with running higher boost.

As for de-tuning, I don't expect there to be any issues. We've pretty much determined what causes the now-infamous "detuning" which we solved in piggy-back applications with our EMI adapter. These issues don't even come into play with actual and proper ECU re-mapping. In fact, on the re-mapped Stage Zero car, we're seeing improvments in power, torque and response as it gets more miles under its belt. Midrange response (say coming out of a turn and stomping on the throttle) has gotten simply remarkable.

As for CARB issues, we can see no issues with OBD-II diagnostics which are still completely in place and should raise no flags with emissions testers. Even the dealership will not be aware of any changes with the ECU. As for cat-inefficiency codes, we're still looking into them. None of our Stage kits have been known to trigger any such codes so it may be sometime before we get to it.

Cheers,
shiv
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Old 12-03-2002, 03:01 PM   #52
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Default hmm interesting question..

Can the ECU be reflashed to remove CEL's for catless downpipes?

That would be very cool and tempting..

Stav
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Old 12-03-2002, 03:45 PM   #53
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Default I don't think these questions have been addressed yet...

Is there any use for or benefit when using the EMI adapter with a re-flashed ECU? What about EBC's...will they still be needed with this re-flash?
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Old 12-03-2002, 04:06 PM   #54
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Default Re: I don't think these questions have been addressed yet...

Quote:
Originally posted by thebusiness999
Is there any use for or benefit when using the EMI adapter with a re-flashed ECU? What about EBC's...will they still be needed with this re-flash?
Hi there,
With the ability to limit boost at those "trouble" load/rpm combos as well as raise the factory fuel cut, the need for the EMI isn't absolutely necessary. Although we have had good results with using one with it (due to the fact that we can can run higher boost at lower throttle angles at lower engine speeds), it's not something we think is necessary for drivability and safety. There really isn't any long-term "de-tuning" issues associated with re-mapping like there is with piggy-back applications.

As for EBCs, they aren't necessary or even recommended. The factory boost control system is far more capable than any aftermarket boost controller system I've seen. With it, we're able to modify both desired boost targets (with respect to both throttle angle and rpm) as well as the underlying duty cycle tables necessary to accurately hit those targets. We're also able to modify the closed-loop logic that operates behind the scenes to get ride of spiking, oscillations and other boost anomolies that we've seen with EBCs. The only advantage I see with EBCs is that they offer user-programmable boost levels (although most without the ability to change boost profile shape with respect to engine speed.)

Cheers,
shiv
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Old 12-03-2002, 04:09 PM   #55
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Shiv,
what about us east cost guys. I am considering getting rid of the UNICHIP in favor of this but I'd like it dyno tuned vs off the shelf base program. Are you working with anyone locally that can offer this in the NYC metro area to get a custom dyned tuned map?

thanks
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Old 12-03-2002, 04:23 PM   #56
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Originally posted by LehighWRX
Shiv,
what about us east cost guys. I am considering getting rid of the UNICHIP in favor of this but I'd like it dyno tuned vs off the shelf base program. Are you working with anyone locally that can offer this in the NYC metro area to get a custom dyned tuned map?

thanks
Hi there,

Understandable concern but one that I only think is valid with aftermarket engine control systems. Since this is the stock ECU, it still has all of its ability to adapt to different cars (as long as they are outfitted similarly). After all, there are thousands of stock WRXs out there all making within 5hp of each other. While dyno tuning is very important to derive and test the maps in the first place, it is not very necessary for the end user. We've done our best to give the ECU enough authority range to custom-tailor itself to each application it is used in. Dyno tuning would come into play for those who don't have standard mods and need to be mapped differently.

Cheers,
shiv
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Old 12-03-2002, 09:14 PM   #57
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One thing we saw with the factory mapping is that, at higher altitudes, the MAP-activated fuel cut is set considerably lower than it is at sea level. Explains why folks in Colorado have a tougher time with running higher boost.
Ok, so I have stage 0 and really hate the MBC because of the altitude here in Denver. I really, really want the set it and forget it this product provides. However, doesn't the stock ECU cut boost as altitude rises? Will you be doing any extra tuning on the boost pressure for us high altitude folks? I don't want to run 15 psi at 12,000ft but I would like to be able to run the same boost level as the sea level guys here in Denver.

Anyone here want a used Unichip??

~PC
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Old 12-03-2002, 11:07 PM   #58
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Shiv,

I know you are selling the product. But humor me for a second. Let's assume for a second you're not a tuning god anymore. Now you are a lawyer. Oh wait, I didn't mean to insult you. OK you are a tax consultant. You're still a WRX nut, and you still know a lot about them. You just don't have a AWD dyno, and 24 hours in a day to use it. Most importanly, like most of us, there are no local tuners.

You decide to buy engine management. You have $1k to spend. Your choices are sending out your ECU to some tuner you've never met and getting it flashed with their estimation of a good map for your car, which they have never seen. Keep in mind that every time you modify your car (bigger turbo? fuel injectors), and every time the tuner makes a mistake (because they are guessing on how to tune a car they've never seen) you will have to send the ECU back. When you do send your ECU back the turn-around tmie is going to be a week or longer. There is also the strong possiblity you will be charged some fee for each additional flash.

Or you could purchase a hybrid piggyback computer that you could tune yourself, or use numerous maps that are available. You could download maps at will. You can go back to stock at the flip of a switch. This computer also datalogs.

Given that situation, I'm curious what your purchase decision would be.

OK fantasy time is over, you can return to being a tuning god now.
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Old 12-04-2002, 02:06 AM   #59
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Quote:
Originally posted by DocDetroit
Shiv,

I know you are selling the product. But humor me for a second. Let's assume for a second you're not a tuning god anymore. Now you are a lawyer. Oh wait, I didn't mean to insult you. OK you are a tax consultant. You're still a WRX nut, and you still know a lot about them. You just don't have a AWD dyno, and 24 hours in a day to use it. Most importanly, like most of us, there are no local tuners.

You decide to buy engine management. You have $1k to spend. Your choices are sending out your ECU to some tuner you've never met and getting it flashed with their estimation of a good map for your car, which they have never seen. Keep in mind that every time you modify your car (bigger turbo? fuel injectors), and every time the tuner makes a mistake (because they are guessing on how to tune a car they've never seen) you will have to send the ECU back. When you do send your ECU back the turn-around tmie is going to be a week or longer. There is also the strong possiblity you will be charged some fee for each additional flash.

Or you could purchase a hybrid piggyback computer that you could tune yourself, or use numerous maps that are available. You could download maps at will. You can go back to stock at the flip of a switch. This computer also datalogs.

Given that situation, I'm curious what your purchase decision would be.

OK fantasy time is over, you can return to being a tuning god now.
Wow... that's a tough question to answer fairly. It basically boils down to whether you believe a baseline map on a programmable ECU/piggy-back will provide better performance and safety margin than a re-programmed ECU designed for a certain set of mods.

All I can speak from is my experience with TEC-IIs and TEC3s. The baseline maps I provided with those systems were quite detuned. They needed to be because of it relatively limited tunability the system provided. I had a fuel map, a timing map, air intake and coolant temp compensations (for fuel and timing). While thats sophisticated as far as aftermarket ECUs go, that's still not ideal. The knock control system was useable albeit not very accurate or trustworthy at higher loads and engine speeds. The boost control system was open-loop and needed to be kept conservative until it was dialed--in for the specific application and conditions. In the end, I could provide maps that worked well enough but for safety, it wasn't close to being ideal in terms of performance. That required a dyno and sound tuning. It is no small feat to extract 150-180hp/liter on pump gas. Ten years ago, without advancements in engine control systems, this would have been considered impossible. But once tuned properly, the results were excellent. Done probably, there are very few downsides. None worth mentioning anyway... But if proper dyno tuning isn't a possibility, you can all but forget the notion of coming real close to ideal tune (whatever one wants to call it).

The other option is to remap the factory ECU. The downside of this is there is no user-tunability and all hopes for performance are placed on the tuner. That's a pretty big responsibility and one that shouldn't be taken lightly. The good news is that the tunability of such is system is head and shoulders about anything else currently available. For example, here's a screen shot I took yesterday of all the fuel tuning related maps:



Similarly, here's a screen shot of all the ignition advance related maps:



And boost...



And most importantly, those related to environment compensations, learning abilities, failsafes modes, etc,:



So... I think the question of whether a user-programmable, but somewhat limited tuning device is better than a more flexible/adaptive pre-programmed device (mapped by a tuner) will depend on the tuner, the user and what your priorities are. That's about as fair as I can be as I've spent the last several years of my professional life doing both.

Just my 2c,
shiv
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Old 12-04-2002, 02:07 AM   #60
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What about boost in 1st and 2nd gears? One of the benefits of a boost controller is that it maintains full boost in low gears when there is less of a load on the engine. Will the Ecutek program allow any way to correct this or will we still need some kind of boost control?
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Old 12-04-2002, 02:16 AM   #61
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Quote:
What about boost in 1st and 2nd gears? One of the benefits of a boost controller is that it maintains full boost in low gears when there is less of a load on the engine. Will the Ecutek program allow any way to correct this or will we still need some kind of boost control?
Basically your answer is "Shiv can do anything you want with the ECUtek"

-Tom
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Old 12-04-2002, 02:25 AM   #62
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Shiv -

Great answer. It was somewhat of a loaded question. Both products have a spot in the market. I guess I'm just disgruntled because I'd like to learn more about engine tuning.

Check out the poll I posted (Ecutek Or Utec). It's very obvious both products are going to do well.

Wow that software does indeed look extremely powerful. That's my problem. That's what I want! Hehe... Living here in the Detroit area i know a few of the calibration engineers (the guys who spend their lives on dynos creating ecu maps). I wonder if they ever get sick of it. They probably do when they have to work on 3.8 liter gm motors making a whopping 55 HP/liter, trying to squeeze another mpg out of it so GM can keep it in the line up for another year.

I love when I see the engineer driving around in cars that look like they have more electronics in them then 3 radio shacks.
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Old 12-04-2002, 03:19 AM   #63
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Wow Shiv! Those maps are really something to drool over...

Since you're in a giving mood - can you talk about the o2 authority range and response of the stock ecu?

Also, have you ever tried adding a fuel temp probe to one of the a/d inputs on a tec3? I've been thinking of doing it, but I wouldn't have any real idea of the enrichment #'s to use.
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Old 12-04-2002, 03:38 AM   #64
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Quote:
Originally posted by Austin
Wow Shiv! Those maps are really something to drool over...

Since you're in a giving mood - can you talk about the o2 authority range and response of the stock ecu?

Also, have you ever tried adding a fuel temp probe to one of the a/d inputs on a tec3? I've been thinking of doing it, but I wouldn't have any real idea of the enrichment #'s to use.
Hi Austin,
The factory fuel control system operates with a short-term authority range of 25%-- pretty huge and often not easily reproduced in aftermarket stand alones which rely on narrow band o2 sensors for input. The factory "wideband" o2 sensor isn't much of a tuning tool as it can't read richer than 11.5:1 which is a good bit leaner than I run under boost in most applications. While it's not as wide in bandwith as my tuning wideband, it does seem to operate awfully fast with good resolution from just above stoich to around 13:1 which is sufficient for good and stable closed loop fuel control without inducing strange hysterisis behavior/oscillations.

In all honestly, I've never tried using fuel temp compensation for enrichment strategies. Heck, I've never used itfor anything But I'm sure there is some merit in it as I've seen it done, in some less-than-understandable respect, in OEM computers. If it wasn't worthwhile, there would be no such thing as fuel chillers an such. But you're better served asking someone who knows more about it.

You might want to consider, if you haven't already, to use TPS for enleanment strategies. Lower thorttle, lower gama. Helps offset some of the VE degredation when seeing high MAP at low throttle positions. Or, you could just leave it nice and rich so that when you transition to WOT you can snuff out any transient pings that may want to come through. Sometimes you can get a degree or two more timing in at full load if you do this. As an aside, OEM computers like of the WRX see similar results by limiting the rate of spark advance increase (or "spark advance attack"), never allowing for sudden spikes in advance which, again, can induce transition ping. This approach works well for OE applications since it doesn't induce high HC levels.

My 2c,
shiv
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Old 12-04-2002, 08:59 AM   #65
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Just a couple more questions, if you don't mind, since I'm seriously trying to figure out how to save up for Stage 1 with the ECUTEK next spring.

1) If we elect to go with the ECUTEK option rather than the piggyback, does the kit still include a manual boost controller?

2) If there is no MBC, can you re-tune the ECU to give full boost in 1st and 2nd, or is that more of a limitation of the vacuum lines than the ECU?

3) If we're paranoid, and decide to skip the underdrive pulley, will it make any difference on the ECM tuning profile?

4) And finally, can your tuning bring on boost any lower in the RPM range, or is that a physics limitation of the turbo and exhaust setup? And also, can you reduce the high RPM boost taper, or is that again a physics limitation of the turbo?

Thanks in advance for any more info you can give us. It's been incredible so far. Those screen shots are really enlightening -- looks like that ECUTEK tuning program is incredibly sophistocated.
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Old 12-04-2002, 12:30 PM   #66
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Alright austin and shiv most of us have no damn idea what yall are talking bout , But it sure is cool to look at all the pretty pictures and graphs - now I will need to spend about 1 month of my life learning and figuring it out. But the ironic thing is even though I will pour over that info I already know this is exactly the thing I need - Why cause Shiv tunned it. hahaha. There really is no need to learn any of this stuff while shiv is still alive. Can you sign me up for the ECU tune of the month club Shiv? Just send it to my addy and card # you have on file no need to check first.
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Old 12-04-2002, 12:55 PM   #67
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Wow... I must say that I am quite impressed. I honestly hadn't given the notion of a reflash much creedance as all the chip reflashing I have seen in the past was simply a joke (on the dyno I'd typically see virtually no gains on many cars.) As you know I was never too keen on the UniChip (but at least it works... mostly) but this defiantely looks like a viable alternative. It definately seems as though you have a rather wide authority range over a variety of sensors/parameters. And here I thought the TEC3 has a lot of versatility! It seems as though you just have to dial in a basic map, and assuming the rest of the parameters are correct the ECU should tune itself up to a threshold. I know that is likely oversimplified quite a bit. (And here I thought you didn't like tuning w/ knock sensors or relying on them?)

One thing though. I'd be curious to know what your think about this reflash vs the Autronic programmable unit you've been working on.

--Matt

PS. What would we do with our UniChips should we decide to go to one of the other engine management solutions? Expensive paperweights?

Last edited by Obsidian; 12-04-2002 at 01:04 PM.
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Old 12-04-2002, 01:12 PM   #68
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Quote:
Originally posted by Obsidian
Wow... I must say that I am quite impressed. I honestly hadn't given the notion of a reflash much creedance as all the chip reflashing I have seen in the past was simply a joke (on the dyno I'd typically see virtually no gains on many cars.) As you know I was never too keen on the UniChip (but at least it works... mostly) but this defiantely looks like a viable alternative. It definately seems as though you have a rather wide authority range over a variety of sensors/parameters. And here I thought the TEC3 has a lot of versatility! It seems as though you just have to dial in a basic map, and assuming the rest of the parameters are correct the ECU should tune itself up to a threshold. I know that is likely oversimplified quite a bit. (And here I thought you didn't like tuning w/ knock sensors or relying on them?)

One thing though. I'd be curious to know what your think about this reflash vs the Autronic programmable unit you've been working on.

--Matt

PS. What would we do with our UniChips should we decide to go to one of the other engine management solutions? Expensive paperweights?
,

We can sell them to the new EVO guys... That's my plain and I'm sticking with it.

Eric
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Old 12-04-2002, 02:52 PM   #69
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Default Re: Re: Keep your head on straight and we all win.

Quote:
Originally posted by Vishnu Performance


The difference between Bosch Motronic ECU reflashing and WRX ECU reflashing is that the Audi/VW tuners only have access to a very small percentage of the entire map database. This is readily appearant upon dyno testing when they don't make anything close to what is claimed and have little car-to-car (or run-to-run, for that matter) repeatibility. Much of the problem is due to BM changing their code (to ward off such activity) every couple of months. As a result, Audis/VW tuning is 30% tuning and 70% cross your fingers and hope that the knock sensor saves the day.
To add to this, here is a dyno graph of a stock 2002 911 turbo (rated 415hp by Porsche) compared to a heavily upgraded S4 (rated 420hp by an aftermaket Audi tuner.) Appearantly, OEM Porsche hp is a lot bigger than Audi tuner hp



And after 7 runs (with heavy heatsoak-- more so on the 911tt which only had one of its two side-mounted ICs cooled by a fan)....



Just thought some might get a kick out of it. Yep, after a few runs, the uber-S4 is making about the same hp as a WRX Stage 0.

Cheers,
shiv

Last edited by Vishnu Performance; 12-04-2002 at 11:03 PM.
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Old 12-04-2002, 03:23 PM   #70
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s.p. that's just mean! Funny...but mean
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Old 12-04-2002, 07:26 PM   #71
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Quote:
Originally posted by Obsidian
this defiantely looks like a viable alternative. It definately seems as though you have a rather wide authority range over a variety of sensors/parameters. And here I thought the TEC3 has a lot of versatility!
I wouldn't trade my TEC3 for the world now that I have it installed, I've learned how to tune it, and it's running well... but if I had it to do over again knowing what I know now, I think I'd seriously consider going the Vishnu/Ecutek ecu route over the TEC3. (As you know Obsidian) TECs are awesome and powerful, but there are just so many little things you give up when you lose the stock ecu.

Shiv - My wife will have her wrx in about a year... I'll hit ya up for an Ecutek then
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Old 12-04-2002, 07:41 PM   #72
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Default Shiv, convert Club_Spec?

Here's a question for you, Shiv: Were I to remove my Unichip from my APS/CObb Club_Spec, and just leave in the APS air intake and turbo_back exhaust, could you adapt my ecu to these mods? Ultimately a properly tuned ecu is better than piggyback mods. But nothing has appealed to me until now.
here's hoping!
darryl
PS Cobb is getting out of his APS dealership to go in to the racing scene.

PS_PS if you can do this, could you do it with a core chare? that way I can stay on the road until the new ecu arrives.
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Old 12-04-2002, 07:45 PM   #73
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Default ps...

I'm currently dynoed at 222hp/221ft/lbs_torque. Can you improve on that with your ecu reflash, the APS air intake, and the APS turbo_back exhaust?
thanks,
Darryl
ps, can you tune to 93/94 octane?
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Old 12-04-2002, 08:27 PM   #74
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1.) Will the ecutek work with my wrx that has a ponyexpress MIL eliminator on the rear O2 sensor???

does it need to look at real numbers being produced by the rear O2 sensor? or will the fake numbers being produced through off the tunning???

2.) also what stage would my car be/ how long will I have to wait for a map with the following mods?

intake hack w/ amsoil panel filter
catless uppipe w/ thermotech wrap
catless downpipe w/ thermotech wrap
axelback
samco intercooler hoses
blitz sbc-id
grounding mod

3.) how much of a power gain will ecuteck yeild with my current mods?
I'm in atlanta so off the shelf for me.

thanks,
Christopher
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Old 12-04-2002, 11:09 PM   #75
Vishnu Performance
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: SF Bay Area, California
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WRX Porsche 996
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Austin-- I just finished dyno tuning my personal TEC3'd WRX. Funny thing is that I made the same power as a similar modded WRX running our remapped ECU. The difference is, after street driving tonight (real cold), I heard a few pings. Appearantly the colder and cleaner air induced slightly lean mixtures which sparked off some minor rattling. So out came the laptop again. Ended up taking away spark advance in the trouble zones and lost 6 hp in the process. The nice thing about a reflashed stock ECU is that it will allow timing to be added in when its possible to do it safely yet quickly respond with less aggressive spark curves when the conditions aren't favorable. And if things get really bad, it'll even fall on to a super rich fuel map. And if it's still pinging, it'll start reducing boost levels. I don't know any aftermarket ECU that can come close to doing that. Especially when it happens so transparently.

Cheers,
shiv
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