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Arouse the DAMPFHAMMER!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I revise ECU calibrations since a few years just for my own learning and know how build up. I've learned the theory like the math, the models and the physic behind e.g. anti-knock-control-strategies or fuel-mass-calculation-models through my studies and job, but as you know knowhow is nothing without experience I am trying to solve as much as posted issues here as I can.

What really often comes my mind, seeing all these different kind of calibrations, is WTF are some of these so called Tuners doing out there for hard earned money of their customers? Nothing would mean a lot of in some cases, sometimes they do just...

:frage:

I've done research on if other guys do have the same experience as I have, as I have the feeling some guys in the Tuning industry just fu...k up their customers. I found something which boils it down to an essence and it comes from a tuner which I greatly respect. He have more than 10 years of experience in the tuning industry. If you don't listen to me, listen to Jeff to what he is pointing at.


Source: evans-tuning.com

He just nailed it down. Guys, please keep in mind, tuning is not only duty once you modified your engine setup it is the finalization step of your result you get. The best engine setup is just useless if the tune is lacking in quality, it even can destroy your engine!

Do your research here at K20a.org or other platforms on feedback to tuners, like you do it on engine parts or even harder. The K-Series engine is one of the best performing 4-cylinder engine plattforms on that planet, it deserve it!

Good luck with your project.

Markus

BTW, a discussion on what we can do for better tuning quality at K20a.org would be nice, as the topic ECU and Tuning here at K20a.org is underrated and could do much more than just being a collection of tuning and ECU issues.
 

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Arouse the DAMPFHAMMER!
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The Lambda concept - a simple world changing view!

You all know the stoichiometric AFR is specific for every fuel, because of it's chemical combination of carbon- and hydrogen-molecules (further could be e.g. oxygen -> alcohols). The following list gives you examples of that (can various with different brands and makes!):
  • gasoline st. AFR = 14.71
  • Methanol st. AFR = 6.47
  • Ethanol st. AFR = 9.00
  • E85 st. AFR = 9.87
  • LPG st. AFR = 15.5
So once you tune your engine for best torque at one operation point of load and engine speed you tune for a specific actual AFR, e.g. with gasoline 12.8. But for which actual AFR do you tune with e.g. Ethanol?`

Knowing the Lambda concept it is easy to calculate a first thump rule for the actual AFR, because

Lambda = actual AFR / st. AFR

with one calculation step we get to

actual AFR = Lambda x st. AFR.

Now the only question is, which Lambda value is the right one. This is also simple.

Source: cliffb75 at photobucket.com

We search for a high combustion speed and at the same time for a high combustion efficiency (= reduced emissions), which means a lambda (every application and every fuel is different) of around 0.85-0.90 for a NA engine. With that in mind we would get a first start actual AFR for Methanol of

5.69 = 0.88 x 6.47.

For tuners it is much more simple to think in Lambda values, as the combustion reaction chemistry, it's thermodynamic and all the calculation just is almost the same once you talk in Lambda. If you talk in AFR numbers, you always must know which fuel is used!

Markus
 

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Agree with everything you said Markus. One good reason why these so-called "tooners" can get away with crappy tunes is because many car enthusiasts are not aware of what constitutes a good tune. All they know is "my car pulls so hard now," not knowing whether the tuner accounted for the owner's driving style, where the car will be used, fuel choice, or if the tuner went aggressive with timing.
 

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Arouse the DAMPFHAMMER!
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
...One good reason why these so-called "tooners" can get away with crappy tunes is because many car enthusiasts are not aware of what constitutes a good tune...
That's a good point Klaiceps! The reason why we should summarize a rough clarification in the following posts at which points one can find out if the tuner is a good or bad address for tuning.

Suggestions are greatly welcome!

Markus
 

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The hard part with educating everyone on tuning is that tuning requires an understanding of engine dynamics and how all of the engine components and sensors work with each other. This is not a topic that can be summarized in a couple paragraphs.
 

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Arouse the DAMPFHAMMER!
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
...This is not a topic that can be summarized in a couple paragraphs.
We will find a way in that complex and difficult field of engine tuning, at least to make guys sensitive for the topic, when reading this thread :). I think a good start will be the area of safety: engine functions, surrounding and measurement equipment.

Markus
 

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I revise ECU calibrations since a few years just for my own learning and know how build up. I've learned the theory like the math, the models and the physic behind e.g. anti-knock-control-strategies or fuel-mass-calculation-models through my studies and job, but as you know knowhow is nothing without experience I am trying to solve as much as posted issues here as I can.

What really often comes my mind, seeing all these different kind of calibrations, is WTF are some of these so called Tuners doing out there for hard earned money of their customers? Nothing would mean a lot of in some cases, sometimes they do just...

:frage:

I've done research on if other guys do have the same experience as I have, as I have the feeling some guys in the Tuning industry just fu...k up their customers. I found something which boils it down to an essence and it comes from a tuner which I greatly respect. He have more than 10 years of experience in the tuning industry. If you don't listen to me, listen to Jeff to what he is pointing at.


Source: evans-tuning.com

He just nailed it down. Guys, please keep in mind, tuning is not only duty once you modified your engine setup it is the finalization step of your result you get. The best engine setup is just useless if the tune is lacking in quality, it even can destroy your engine!

Do your research here at K20a.org or other platforms on feedback to tuners, like you do it on engine parts or even harder. The K-Series engine is one of the best performing 4-cylinder engine plattforms on that planet, it deserve it!

Good luck with your project.

Markus

BTW, a discussion on what we can do for better tuning quality at K20a.org would be nice, as the topic ECU and Tuning here at K20a.org is underrated and could do much more than just being a collection of tuning and ECU issues.
Well said Marcus... some tuner are really good & applying physic/science/thermodynamic with regards to their ECU tuning/calibration... some so called "typical tuners" are just key in number, try & error hoping for big HP figure (without even care about AFR, realibility issue, limitation the engine setup can take) & totally unaware about the cause & effect behind it... risking hard earn money spent by their customer on the engine build tuning.

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Re: The Lambda concept - a simple world changing view!

You all know the stoichiometric AFR is specific for every fuel, because of it's chemical combination of carbon- and hydrogen-molecules (further could be e.g. oxygen -> alcohols). The following list gives you examples of that (can various with different brands and makes!):
  • gasoline st. AFR = 14.71
  • Methanol st. AFR = 6.47
  • Ethanol st. AFR = 9.00
  • E85 st. AFR = 9.87
  • LPG st. AFR = 15.5
So once you tune your engine for best torque at one operation point of load and engine speed you tune for a specific actual AFR, e.g. with gasoline 12.8. But for which actual AFR do you tune with e.g. Ethanol?`

Knowing the Lambda concept it is easy to calculate a first thump rule for the actual AFR, because

Lambda = actual AFR / st. AFR

with one calculation step we get to

actual AFR = Lambda x st. AFR.

Now the only question is, which Lambda value is the right one. This is also simple.

Source: cliffb75 at photobucket.com

We search for a high combustion speed and at the same time for a high combustion efficiency (= reduced emissions), which means a lambda (every application and every fuel is different) of around 0.85-0.90 for a NA engine. With that in mind we would get a first start actual AFR for Methanol of

5.69 = 0.88 x 6.47.

For tuners it is much more simple to think in Lambda values, as the combustion reaction chemistry, it's thermodynamic and all the calculation just is almost the same once you talk in Lambda. If you talk in AFR numbers, you always must know which fuel is used!

Markus
Exactly right.... different fuel having different chemical composition/formula of the main fuel elements which are Carbon & Hydrogen...

(i.e. Methane gas aka LNG is CH4, I'm using this because this is the gas fuel that I know & I burning it on my day to day job inside my steam boiler :)

Different chemical composition across fuel variety (petrol 92 95 100, E85, methanol, ethanol, CNG, NGV etc)... require different stochiometic ratio (AFR) of air for perfect combustion in controlled condition aka (nearly perfect full combustion process with desirable combustion temperature which will affecting the realibility of piston valve n etc)

Also.. different fuel has different combustion rate (fast or slow) & peak pressure/explosion characteristic depending on compression ratio, engine RPM, boost n etc...

This is why tuning an engine EFI system aka ECU calibration is not just about key in number.... a lot of science & physic involve



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Arouse the DAMPFHAMMER!
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Re: The Lambda concept - a simple world changing view!

...risking hard earn money spent by their customer on the engine build tuning...
A very good point, Johari! This is really something guys should be aware of.

...i.e. Methane gas aka LNG is CH4, I'm using this because this is the gas fuel that I know & I burning it on my day to day job inside my steam boiler :)...
Aaaahhh, very nice to see you have very good knowhow in field of combustion process and control :up:

...tuning an engine EFI system aka ECU calibration is not just about key in number...a lot of science & physic involve...
I like that point Johari! The question is how should a customer differentiate between a well schooled and experienced Calibrator and one who just know to manage the test bench and calibration software beside some rough tuning stuff?

My intention of this thread is to find out key criteria's one should check before he choose a tuning shop. I am reviewing for about four years calibrations of Honda enthusiasts and saw a great variety of calibration failures, leading to smaller and bigger issues for the engine. Besides risky range limits for control parameters like redline (obvious type of failure) or knock limits (non-obvious within Hondata calibrations) there are a bigger amount of low baller map calibrations, especially of the low to medium load operation points, which is either a lack of competence of the tuner or an economical caused issue.

At least failures, which bring risk to the engine, engine lifetime and the driver should be reduced to minimum.

Ideas for the check list are warmly welcome :).

Markus
 

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Well said Marcus.... keep writing tech stuff & idea in this thread.... thumbs up

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If I read the report correctly, he settled for around $4k, but he agrees to no longer sell or install any of the "defeat devices" listed in the report. The interesting thing here is that Hondata kpro and kmanager are both listed as "defeat devices." The AEM system is on the list as well.

I don't know that this is as serious as it initially seems. If a car comes drives into a shop and has a license plate, and you remove or disable emissions related components and the car drives away from the shop with a license plate, then you have most likely broken the law. In my area, muffler shops will not remove a cat. If the car comes in the shop with a cat, it must leave with a cat. Plain an simple. Breaking the law, polluting the environment just to get 2hp just isn't worth it.
 

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Arouse the DAMPFHAMMER!
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
If I read the report correctly, he settled for around $4k, but he agrees to no longer sell or install any of the "defeat devices" listed in the report. The interesting thing here is that Hondata kpro and kmanager are both listed as "defeat devices." The AEM system is on the list as well.
Yes, around 4.5k USD and the maybe business killing agreement. This came up in mid 2017 for him. The published document, I linked above in 2018. In 2017 he set up an Tuning Academy, where he just teach how to cheat or not in terms of EPA's definitions, but no longer can be made responsible. He have the knowledge and experience to do so, but what will all this small business work shop do, which only have customers in DD market? It all depends on the EPA's next steps. The Clean Air Act is duty for all states of the US, so primarily CARB and EPA are allowed to act, EPA even US-wide. If they choose to hunt in the Tuning scene, don't know what happens, it is just a question who trigger them to do or not to do so.

its more serious than we can imagine. these keep popping up and this industry is done...
It popp up several times in the history of tuning in the US, but they are still here. Here in Germany we suffer much more under the outcome of OBD in the 70'ies as German Bureaucracy is like an old bulldozer, it works and works and works and works...here you are forced to pass Emission and Hardware testing done by TÜV and similar institutions every two years to get the car legal again. You get a stamp for it in year related colors for the lisence plate, so the cops easily see if you have passed the testing or not.

Now one can think, ok just one day every two year to modify the car and problem fixed. Nono, if ever you will have an accident with an illegal car, which will be proved most likely, no matter if it was your fault causing the accident or not, you get in response for it partly and your insurance will refuse to pay full compensation for the other party and you. Beside that, modified cars are an easy food for cops, if they doubt it is legal, even if everything is stated in the papers they can make your day. Just to give you an example, if you swap induction with an CAI without official papers, saying this part number is legal for your specific car, they can make your day.
 

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Arouse the DAMPFHAMMER!
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
This was an approach from the EPA in 2016: Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines and Vehicles—Phase 2, it would have forbidden to modify emission relevant systems like 2nd wideband deactivation, decat pipes and so on for every street legal passenger car.

A bit of history to the topic:
https://www.arnoldporter.com/en/per...ignals-more-enforcement-cases-for-aftermarket

https://jalopnik.com/the-epas-crackdown-on-race-cars-explained-1758111546

https://www.change.org/p/donald-tru...rmarket-parts-performance-and-tuning-industry

https://www.roadandtrack.com/motors...t-the-epas-track-car-proposal-actually-means/
 
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