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Old 11-22-2013, 06:08 PM   #21
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I found a great deal on an almost new supercharger setup when I decided to boost my car back in late 2008.
(For the record, I always wanted a supercharger - it's a personal preference, not because one form of FI is better than the other)

Well, the whole setup arrived, and it had a powercard system for engine management.
I proceeded to tune the powercards to the best of my ability, and made some horrendous mistakes along the way. Trial and error gave me fairly decent running car eventually.

Yes, the powercard system was adequate, even fine - at pretty low boost settings. One disclaimer to this end is this: I installed a pretty extensive port water injection system as a precaution.

Later, in my quest for more boost and power, I started looking into a standalone engine management solution, meaning, the stock ECU would be taken out of the car, and a new, "customizable" ECU would be installed and tuned correctly.

Let me emphasize one thing here: my engine did not blow up. Not even once, not even a tiny bit.
But, there comes a time when you just know you have outgrown an entry level system with inherent limitations.
God knows what EGTs I was running for instance. Or, how much I was wasting in terms of power, or gas mileage...
And, I was no longer running 6 psi of boost. I went up to 8, then 10, then 12 , all the way up to 16.5 eventually.

I pulled the trigger for an MSII right around the time I was at 10 psi.

Just shot an email to Reverant, and asked for help. A Paypal payment accompanied my email.
Reverant is an amazing source, a very unerstanding guy, a great vendor, and an overall electronics god. Praise be with Rev... Really.

Meanwhile, I was absolutely terrified with the idea of installing a standalone in my car. That thing could send my engine to outer space if I got it wrong. I had no idea whatsoever about anything related to MS and tuning an engine from scratch.

So, the box arrived at my doorstep, and I promptly placed it on the top shelf of my bookcase, and left it there for the next month or so. I looked at it everyday, and tried to muster the guts to actually install it in my beloved car.

After tons of reading and begging for help on this forum, I went out to my car and just installed the thing.
I turned the key, and Booom.. The car fired up and settled into a nice idle. That was a great moment.
Rev sends you a form, you fill it out, and then he loads/sets all the basics in the MS for you.
The rest was an incredibly steep learning curve. I just kept playing around with ALL the settings. I would first save the tune to my PC inside the house (to keep it safe) and then just have at it whenever I found some time.
That led to some incredible discoveries. With the MS, you have TOTAL control over how your car behaves. It can be a sweet kitty cat, a hound dog, or a fierce beast, or a combination of all those. I achieved a very sweet balance where I get great MPG on steady cruise, and a shrieking monster that lunges at anything that could be ahead of it coming out of turn 14 on the F1 track in Istanbul.
The whole learning bit took maybe a year. I took my time.
Rev ran to my rescue when I had problems.
The coolest thing about MS is Autotune. It's not a cure for cancer, or stupidity, but it really does wonders to your ability to understand and actually accomplish the magic that is called tuning.

So, your budget may dictate a Voodoo box at this very moment. Does not matter. Just know that you will drive a better car that responds better to your inputs with a standalone. And that, you will eventually end up with a standalone sometime down the line. Deciding when that "sometime" is going to be is up to you.
But, I would make that real soon if I were you.
Don't turn your driving into a struggle. Get an MS, and just enjoy the hell out of it.

Last edited by Godless Commie; 11-22-2013 at 06:12 PM. Reason: spelink
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Old 11-23-2013, 12:03 AM   #22
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Not sure how much time/effort you want to dedicate to your car...

Voodoo has one thing going for it, pretty simple to set up. MS is far from plug and play. As per the post above, there is research, fiddling and tuning that will keep you busy for weeks if not months.
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Old 11-23-2013, 02:15 AM   #23
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Where are you located? I've helped several members get their cars together and tuned.
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Old 11-23-2013, 09:59 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Screaming04 View Post
Not sure how much time/effort you want to dedicate to your car...

Voodoo has one thing going for it, pretty simple to set up. MS is far from plug and play. As per the post above, there is research, fiddling and tuning that will keep you busy for weeks if not months.
Megasquirt, even "plug and play", will certainly keep you busy for a while, but all that time spent is picking up power, efficiency, reliability, mpg, etc, that you won't see with a simple setup piggyback.

Most people here recommend getting the megasquirt set up on a stock car and learning to tune on it first. There is a lot to learn and an N/A car is much more forgiving.

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Where are you located? I've helped several members get their cars together and tuned.
^ That's huge if you can get someone local to show you the basics. Spending 30 minutes with someone that has even a very basic understanding of the software will help immensely in getting you up and running.
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:23 PM   #25
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So, if I *am* planning to go with MS, are there any other kits out there that are as complete as the FM kit, but for less? I was looking at some of the begi kits, but it's hard to tell what all "extra stuff" i would need.. Is (for example) the Begi-S a "bolt on" kit in that it includes everything needed other than engine management?

I have a 99 base, and I really think I'd be happy with 180-200whp. I had a GTI and 200hp in that was more than enough for me, and this car is quite a bit lighter.
Firstly, stop thinking about any kits until you have the MS built and working on your car. It will make the whole process easier if you get your car runnning NA with the MS.

Secondly if you are used to a 200hp GTI a 200hp miata will put a big **** eating gin on your face. One of my friends had a new 09/10 GTI and went for a ride in my 94 with a little over 200hp at the wheels. He almost wanted to straight up trade. Then I mentioned the lack of AC and other nice things that he had in the GTI that are missing from the miata.
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:42 PM   #26
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Sounds good. I'm liking this idea.

So, with a full IHE setup currently, if I get MS and do a 91 octane tune, will I squeeze any extra HP out of my current setup? or will it mostly just be the joy of tuning?
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:44 PM   #27
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Sounds good. I'm liking this idea.

So, with a full IHE setup currently, if I get MS and do a 91 octane tune, will I squeeze any extra HP out of my current setup? or will it mostly just be the joy of tuning?

You'll get more out of it with a good tune.
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:54 PM   #28
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I installed an MS3 basic in my otherwise stock 99 and have zero experience with any EMS or tuning cars at all.

With no ignition tuning except 3 pulled everywhere (because 87 octane) it felt same as stock. When I went to 93 and added the 3 back there was a noticeable bump in both torque and power.

I still haven't touched my idle, it sometimes gets stuck at 2200 but otherwise works almost like stock. Otherwise I put in <4 hours total tuning, and that gets it to 99% perfect. Those that say it's too difficult and that you should stick with a piggyback are idiots. It took ALMOST a full weeks worth of 30 seconds every morning and evening before I commuted to/from work to tune.
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Old 11-25-2013, 02:00 PM   #29
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Thanks so much for your replies all.

I have a mate here in town who is willing to help with the tune. I'm located in the chippewa valley of WI, not sure if there are any members in that area (possibly some over in mpls?) but either way, I know a guy who said he is willing to help me tune. He has done plenty in the past.

I think this holiday season I'll be buying myself MS DIYPnP and a learn to solder kit, then learning to solder on some practice stuff, and then putting together the MS so that come spring when I can take my baby out of storage I'll be ready to set up for a good N/A tune.

This will also give me some extra time to save up for the turbo build as well, and possibly to piece something out of (good, quality) used parts.
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Old 11-25-2013, 04:29 PM   #30
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Thanks so much for your replies all.

I have a mate here in town who is willing to help with the tune. I'm located in the chippewa valley of WI, not sure if there are any members in that area (possibly some over in mpls?) but either way, I know a guy who said he is willing to help me tune. He has done plenty in the past.

I think this holiday season I'll be buying myself MS DIYPnP and a learn to solder kit, then learning to solder on some practice stuff, and then putting together the MS so that come spring when I can take my baby out of storage I'll be ready to set up for a good N/A tune.

This will also give me some extra time to save up for the turbo build as well, and possibly to piece something out of (good, quality) used parts.
Save up and go with a MS3X with a diybob over the MS DIYPNP. It may cost a few hundred extra, but long term it will be the most upgradeable.
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Old 11-25-2013, 04:53 PM   #31
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Just to be clear, the diybob is basically a Wiring harness, right? I like this option mostest. Allows me to transfer it to another car/sell it to anyone, correct?

Any issues with going with MS3 without the expansion board at first? Are there any essentials on the ms3x that I will need for tuning the n/a NB?
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Old 12-28-2013, 02:09 AM   #32
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I have the voodoo as well. Not a huge fan of it though. Running the flyinmiata voodoo2 kit and was trying to mess around with it other week on the dyno, wasn't even trying to go for power just wanted to make it safe and even when I turned the little screws for more fuel. It just felt like it wasn't doing much. Sadly I have to sell the car but if I were to keep it, is get MS.
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Old 12-29-2013, 09:46 PM   #33
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wasn't even trying to go for power just wanted to make it safe and even when I turned the little screws for more fuel. It just felt like it wasn't doing much.
Thats because there IS no more fuel, you're 1-2 psi over the max of the stock injectors.
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Old 12-29-2013, 10:16 PM   #34
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It's only at 6. Sometimes hits 7
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Old 12-29-2013, 10:33 PM   #35
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Yeah thats max for stock injectors. You can only keep an injector at 100%, any more doesnt do anything as the injector is already open 100% of the time. You sir are at 100% which is why turning it up more aint working.
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:17 PM   #36
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Roughly 90% is max because of deadlines. It takes time to move the little internal parts and nothing really closes on the stock injectors above 90%
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:19 PM   #37
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Roughly 90% is max because of deadlines. It takes time to move the little internal parts and nothing really closes on the stock injectors above 90%
Well not really. 100% is max because you can keep injectors open without closing. In that case they are getting voltage 100% of the time and never closing which is whats happening at 6psi with the stock injectors.
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:54 PM   #38
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Yeah thats max for stock injectors. You can only keep an injector at 100%, any more doesnt do anything as the injector is already open 100% of the time. You sir are at 100% which is why turning it up more aint working.
Gotcha but on the bright side I pass inspection with no problem which is nice about the voodoo box
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Old 12-30-2013, 01:36 AM   #39
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How bright is it when u grenade your motor because you've been running at 13 afr?
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Old 12-30-2013, 01:41 AM   #40
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he is a 15post spambot moron that came here to sell his doodoo box equipped car

don't waste your posts on him
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