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Old 02-02-2012, 10:29 PM   #1
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Default Please proofread my DIY noob boost build list.

92 MX-5.
Current condition: 100k. Stock everything.

I don't have any of the items listed below.
This is a perspective build list:

Turbo: td04 - t25 (gst turbo). Used.

Ignition/Timing: MSD Ignition for Miata

Fuel: 1.8l injectors (whatever color I can find). Ebay FMU.

Oil lines: tap off the existing stock location. stainless steel ebay material.

Intercooler: none at the moment.

Manifold: ebay china material

BOV: ebay bov

Boost control: ebay boost controller

Exhaust: 2.5" ebay srs exhaust

Boost Gauge: ebay boost gauge

Wideband 02: none at the moment

What am I missing? I think water lines, but I'm not sure what the purpose of that is, I couldn't find it in the FAQ's.
If I purchase all of these items and bolt them together onto my Miata correctly, will it start up and boost? Target is 5-7 PSI.

Be hard and blunt, but be descriptive, use layman terms. I don't quite speak DIY turbo yet. My last car was a WRX so I've had a turbo car, but haven't had to build one yet.
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Old 02-02-2012, 10:52 PM   #2
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OK who is this. I'm sensing pusha got another username to troll.

If not, then you need to forget buying everything you listed there.
Turbo: SR20 T25
Ignition/Timing/Fuel: Megasquirt & 460cc injectors
Oil lines: use only quality as it is the lifeblood of the motor and cheaping out here will screw you royally in the end.
Intercooler: ebay unit
Piping: FM silcone hoses
Manifold/downpipe: BEGi/FM/ARTech/Trackspeed (when it comes out)
Exhaust: 2.5" or larger free flowing (know nothing of the srs)
Wideband: Not even a choice. You must have one or you will screw up your motor.

Very little if anything needs to be bought off an ebay vendor. Good stuff does pop up on there from time to time, but the regular stuff is all crap.
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Old 02-02-2012, 10:58 PM   #3
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A 3" exhaust would be better.
Megasquirt is the standard means of controlling ignition/fuel/timing, you can use bandaids but I would not. If you decide to go for a MS, check out DIYautotune.
You need a wideband
Supra injectors are cheap and readily accessible, nothing wrong with NA8 injectors at 5 psi (I think they are ok at 7psi but don't take my word on it), but I'd just go with the supra injectors myself.
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Old 02-02-2012, 11:08 PM   #4
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I am not pusha, or whoever that person is. I have this similar username over at nasioc.

I should have mentioned that I'm trying to keep costs to a minimum. I'm willing to take the risk involved with cheaper items, after all, it's a learning experience. Do it right or do it twice, and I'll likely do it twice even with quality items.

I can't afford a MegaSquirt unit. I'm aiming for low boost, hence the MSD control unit, which I read should be sufficient. Or am I incorrect? Has it been proven unreliable for a turbo setup? I'm not sure.
I also understand that an intercooler isn't absolutely necessary which is why I'll add it in eventually, but not at the build time. If I need wideband, I'll add that and get quality oil lines as well.

Aside the fact that most the parts are ebay, is this list pretty close to complete?
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Old 02-02-2012, 11:26 PM   #5
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I can't emphasize enough how horribly unreliable the ebay kits are. Plenty of people have bought them to save money to have basically scrap metal a few weeks or months later after the manifolds/dp cracked all to hell. If you don't have the money to do it right, then save and wait for good used equipment to pop up.
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Old 02-02-2012, 11:30 PM   #6
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Yeah, ebay exhaust manifolds are junk, do not buy.
If keeping cost down is the goal, you can get a MS1 3.0 DIY kit + accessories for >$250.
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Old 02-02-2012, 11:52 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poetik02 View Post
I can't afford a MegaSquirt unit. I'm aiming for low boost, hence the MSD control unit, which I read should be sufficient. Or am I incorrect? Has it been proven unreliable for a turbo setup? I'm not sure.
I also understand that an intercooler isn't absolutely necessary which is why I'll add it in eventually, but not at the build time. If I need wideband, I'll add that and get quality oil lines as well.

Aside the fact that most the parts are ebay, is this list pretty close to complete?
I'll say this once.

YOU NEED A WIDEBAND

I'll also say this, judging from your previous statements.

YOU CANNOT AFFORD TO TURBO YOUR CAR

But I'll break down the failures of your plan piece by piece.

When we say the Ebay manifolds aren't reliable, we mean it. IF everything else magically works, you're looking at getting cracks within a week, and it'll be undriveable in about two weeks, purely from the manifold breaking. This is from the extremely thin metals being used and the huge chunk of iron (the turbo) you bolt on to the end of it.

Next I'll address your supposed lack of a need for a wideband. You're plan is to put a number of incredibly cheap, known-to-be-unreliable parts on your car, yet you're not planning on monitoring them in any way?

Your BOV and boost controller (as long as it's not an in cockpit unit) are acceptable. As your temporary plans for no intercooler.

You can't afford a cheaper name brand like autometer for your boost gauge? They're $30.

The ebay exhaust suffers from the same issues as the manifold, but because it's not supporting a heavy turbo, it doesn't tend to crack as quickly, but still has a life of about a year or two. Rusts quickly too. I'd honestly suggest if you're truly budget oriented, to use your stock exhaust.

I'd highly suggest looking into MS. I know you think you can't afford it, but you truly need it. If you bought a MS and wideband, I bet you'd find 75% of the power you'd get out of your listed turbo setup. And it wouldn't blow up.
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:17 AM   #8
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What's your budget if you don't mind me asking?
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:58 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poetik02 View Post
92 MX-5.
Current condition: 100k. Stock everything.

I don't have any of the items listed below.
This is a perspective build list:

Turbo: td04 - t25 (gst turbo). Used.

Ignition/Timing: MSD Ignition for Miata

Fuel: 1.8l injectors (whatever color I can find). Ebay FMU.

Oil lines: tap off the existing stock location. stainless steel ebay material.

Intercooler: none at the moment.

Manifold: ebay china material

BOV: ebay bov

Boost control: ebay boost controller

Exhaust: 2.5" ebay srs exhaust

Boost Gauge: ebay boost gauge

Wideband 02: none at the moment

What am I missing? I think water lines, but I'm not sure what the purpose of that is, I couldn't find it in the FAQ's.
If I purchase all of these items and bolt them together onto my Miata correctly, will it start up and boost? Target is 5-7 PSI.

Be hard and blunt, but be descriptive, use layman terms. I don't quite speak DIY turbo yet. My last car was a WRX so I've had a turbo car, but haven't had to build one yet.
Besides that list being perhaps one of the worst builds I've ever seen, there are lots of things in there you don't need. You don't need a bigger exhaust if you are going for a cheap *** build. Get rid of the MSD and the FMU. That has just let you purchase a megasquirt ECU with change to spare. See, I just made your build better. You can thank me later, or now, whatever. Oh and you're also missing a downpipe.
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:53 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gearhead_318 View Post
What's your budget if you don't mind me asking?
A maximum of $1500 all said and done. I appreciate all the help so I can add and subtract as necessary.

Turbo - $100
Downpipe - $150 (ebay)
Wideband - $150
Manifold - $400 (BEGI)
Injectors - $100
BOV - $50
Boost Gauge - $50
Boost controller - $100 (BEGI)
Oil feed - $60 (BEGI)
Water feed - $??
MSD - $160 (FlyingMiata)
FMU - $100
Misc - $100

Total: $1500

I know at this price point, I can get a starter kit from BEGI ($1700). But wouldn't all the odds and ends add up to over $2200 for BEGI? Or has someone successfully spent less than $2000 total with a BEGI starter kit?

You guys keep saying to ditch the FMU and MSD, but why? Don't I need some sort of timing and fuel management. Part of the reason I chose those two is because of they are mainly already programed or are simple to program; basically plug and play for the most part. Or am I mistaken again? I have not seen a running and complete MS system for under $300. I mentioned ebay for the most part, but obviously I'll cross shop the prices with known manufacturers, I was mainly trying to get across that this is a budget build.

Someone mentioned just buying a full MS setup. How much power can MS truly yield? I know tuning is essential. Hours upon hours was spent tuning my last car to get it to run perfect, and even then, it could always use more tweaking.

I'm trying to learn so bitch and be harsh, but be informative please, it helps. Seriously. Thanks.

Last edited by poetik02; 02-03-2012 at 03:13 AM.
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Old 02-03-2012, 03:31 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poetik02 View Post
Someone mentioned just buying a full MS setup. How much power can MS truly yield? I know tuning is essential. Hours upon hours was spent tuning my last car to get it to run perfect, and even then, it could always use more tweaking.
I have a customer's 500whp '99 running on an Enhanced MS2. It can make power, no problems there.
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Old 02-03-2012, 03:36 AM   #12
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You can easily get sub-$2k for a Begi kit w/MS2 and injectors.

I'm seeing a BEGi-shanghai setup run about ~$1400ish, depending on year (~$1340 in my cart atm, YMMV, I don't remember the options I had selected on it)

A MSsomething from Brainy or Reverant, ~$500. Or you can build your own, I remember someone on here bragging about building a Miata MegaSquirt1 for ~$150ish.

Throw in RX7 injectors, that's another $100-$150. (Go with RX8 though, I wish I would have. ~$180 last I checked from rockauto for a fully rebuilt set.)

Done. For ~$2k. And it's not a shitty hacked together eBay kit.
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Old 02-03-2012, 10:27 AM   #13
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Shoot. We're dreaming about budget systems, and we all forgot about the clutch and diff. Those will slip and break, respectively. MAYBE not at 4.5-5 psi, but definitely above that.
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Old 02-03-2012, 11:01 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poetik02 View Post
92 MX-5.
Current condition: 100k. (k. stands for kilo, K is thousand, but 100K what? miles?) Stock everything.

I don't have any of the items listed below.
This is a perspective build list: <---redundant

Turbo: td04 - t25 (gst turbo). Used.

Ignition/Timing: MSD Ignition for Miata

Fuel: 1.8l injectors (whatever color I can find). Ebay FMU.

Oil lines: tap off the existing stock location. stainless steel ebay material. <--ebay is not a foundary. Maybe you plan to purchase SS oil lines on eBay?

Intercooler: none at the moment. <--You said this was a hypotheical build list and you don't have these items. So I'm confused, do you not have an intercooler, not want an intercooler, or haven't decided on an intercooler?

Manifold: ebay china material <--again, eBay isn't a foundary. Unless you plan to purchase raw materials off eBay, then melt them down and pour your own manifold, you need to be more clear.

BOV: ebay bov <-- eBay doesn't make BOVs, do you plan to purchase a shitty BOV off eBay?

Boost control: ebay boost controller <-- eBay doesn't make MBCs, do you plan to purchase a shitty MBC off eBay?

Exhaust: 2.5" ebay srs exhaust <-- eBay doesn't make exhausts, do you plan to purchase a srsly shitty exhaust off eBay?

Boost Gauge: ebay boost gauge <-- eBay doesn't make boost gauges, do you plan to purchase a shitty boost gauge off eBay?

Wideband 02: none at the moment <--Again, I'm confused, do you not have a wbo2, not want a wbo2, or haven't decided on a wbo2? I bet I know where you plan to buy it.

What am I missing? <--a clue. I think water lines, but I'm not sure what their purpose are; I couldn't find it in the FAQs. P
If I purchase all of these items and bolt them together onto my Miata correctly, will it start up and boost? Target is 5-7 PSI.

Be hard and blunt, but be descriptive; use layman's terms. I don't quite understand turbo concepts or what "quality" means. My last car was a WRX so I've had a turbo car before, I just haven't had to build one yet.
Proofreading comments in red.
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Old 02-03-2012, 11:15 AM   #15
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listen to the folks in this thread, dude. there are a lot of smart and experienced members chiming in. i don't have a lot to add that wouldn't just be parroting curly's words.

none of us can stress enough how much benefit you'll get out of starting with better engine management and getting a solid understanding of working with it, as you go forward.

i originally was in a similar position, looking to try to keep it super simple and jump right into the boosting process, was frankly a little scared of getting in to a megasquirt and learning to tune, etc... plus i figured it would be a bigger cost, and ultimately i was just impatient and wanted to do it all as quickly as possible.

i got talked in to starting with JUST the megasquirt and LC-1 wideband to start, with a goal of just getting that installed and running reliably. over that period of time i could cruise classifieds/ebay/etc... for turbo system components, with the goal of assembling a kit (or stashing $ away for something like a shanghai that didn't yet exist at the time) for once i was comfortable with the MS experience.

at the end of it, as has already been mentioned but is worth pointing out a second time, you'll end up spending more money replacing things as you realize they suck ********, then just taking a slightly slower approach and doing things more correctly out of the gate.
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:36 PM   #16
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Does everyone on here have a MS system? I need to get with the program, but it's intense. There is so much room for error in building a MS. I would rather work my way up to a DIY standalone by starting with some plug and play piggyback system.
So what if I go with a VooDoo Box instead? It's fairly simple and seems to be able to automatically adjust timing as compared to MSD's standard set timing. Again, I know the VooDoo is even closer to the cost of a MS, but there's a lot of building and soldering with the MS that I really don't feel comfortable with. Did everyone one of you jump right into a MS? I seriously don't have any experience with car electronics.

Last edited by poetik02; 02-03-2012 at 01:07 PM.
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:25 PM   #17
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Stupid phone double post, sorry

Last edited by Miater; 02-03-2012 at 01:31 PM. Reason: double smart phone post.
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:27 PM   #18
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Yes, everyone has one or two, it is the proper way. If Mazda could do it again MS would be a factory option. Lol

Another issue is regular wear part upkeep. Please make sure that your brakes, ball joints, suspension, steering hardware, REAREND, and clutch kit are all up to the extra stress. Do a compression and leak down test to see if its even worth the time and money.

Sounds like this poor Miata only has a few short months left to live. If you cant afford even a half way proper turbo setup, how do you expect to maintain the car as a whole?

What happened to the WRX?
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:28 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poetik02 View Post
Does everyone on here have a MS system? I need to get with the program, but it's intense. There is so much room for error in building a MS. I would rather work my way up to a DIY standalone by starting with some plug and play piggyback system.
So what if I go with a VooDoo Box instead? It's fairly simple and seems to be able to automatically adjust timing as compared to MSD's standard set timing. Again, I know the VooDoo is even closer to the cost of a MS, but there's a lot of building and soldering with the MS that I really don't feel comfortable with. Did everyone one of you jump right into a MS? I seriously don't have any experience with car electronics.
Man you don't have to make it yourself. There are people here who make them for you, and they are a complete plug and play setup. Most people here either run megasquirt or the AEM EMS, but you can't afford the AEM.
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:55 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miater View Post
Yes, everyone has one or two, it is the proper way. If Mazda could do it again MS would be a factory option. Lol

Another issue is regular wear part upkeep. Please make sure that your brakes, ball joints, suspension, steering hardware, REAREND, and clutch kit are all up to the extra stress. Do a compression and leak down test to see if its even worth the time and money.

Sounds like this poor Miata only has a few short months left to live. If you cant afford even a half way proper turbo setup, how do you expect to maintain the car as a whole?

What happened to the WRX?
This.
Plus like Curly said your going to need a new rearend and clutch to handle the powa, the car will not be reliable without. If I where you, I'd make sure the car is in good & safe running order (compression check, brakes, tranny fluid, suspension, tires, rollbar ect.), do the diff, get megasquirt, get MS running on your stock and then get a turbo kit form begi or FM. It would be slower, but safer and you'll be a lot happier with a system that will be reliable.
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