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Thread: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

  1. #1
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
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    MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    I am trying to decide if I should control my new 2.5L TII engine with a MegaSquirt 3, or a Pro-M Racing controller. I am leaning toward the Pro-M, even though it will end up costing around $4k, by the time I am done. The reason I prefer the Pro-M is that the MS doesn't seem to be having much success, with our engines, and the Pro-M seems like it will more easily adapt to any component changes. It also provides OBDII connection.

    My intent here is to not only stir up a hornet's nest, but get some good info flowing, as I have not been able to find much on MegaSquirt successes. It would be great if there was a Knowledge Base article on MegaSquirt, so that we wouldn't have to spend so much time trying to search for kernels of info.

  2. #2
    Rhymes with tortoise. Turbo Mopar Staff cordes's Avatar
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    Why not stock electronics? I'm very happy with my initial 2.5 TII atx turbonator LM cal.

    ETA: For 4K you could fly someone out an have a darn good cal in no time IMO.

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    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    I want to eliminate the original wiring. I've worked on my '86 Laser for 10 years, and there's always something wiring related that I end up having to t'shoot. I am good at wiring and want a clean looking setup without old wiring issues. I recently bought Shellgame's SMEC for it, as it has an '88 Daytona 2.2L T2 engine and harness in it. The tune seems good, but the weather closed in before I could really test it.

    This engine is for my '87 Daytona, which I am building a CB 2.5L T2 for. It will see a lot of track days, and hopefully put out 400+ hp. I want to be able to make modifications without needing to spend a lot of time getting the tune correct. One mistake and that $4k wouldn't look so expensive.

    I really would like to use the money elsewhere, which is why I need to know if MS is a viable alternative.
    Last edited by LaserDad; 01-08-2015 at 08:21 PM.

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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    You wont find any Megasquirt info in the knowledge base here because a majority of the members on this forum have a belief that the stock electronics are the only way to go. They don't like it because its nota "plug and play" setup for our cars- you will have to rewire a lot of the engine compartment, most people will run away screaming with their hands flailing above their heads if they have to mess with rewiring anything.

    That being said, there are several of us that have had very good success with Megasquirt on these engines- I am one of them. Megasquirt will be far more flexible and expandable than the Pro-M units, they are acutally easily configured to work with all of our stock sensors, or any other sensors you would want to replace them with. you will have to do the same amount of rewiring to use either system. support is second to none- there is a huge forum for MS users and the community there is all about helping others with problems and coming up with new features, additions to firmware etc.
    The other major plus is if there is a failure of something with the MS you can open it up diagnose the problem and repair it yourself, everyone else you have to send it off and wait a month or 2.

    sure you can buy cals for the stock computer. build an install a megasquirt and you will never have to pay for a cal again- its fully capable of tuning itself on the fly. Tunerstudio is far and above the best tuning software out there- better than motec, fast, aem, all the big names- and I know people who have used both for years ( my cousin is a motec sponsored SCCA racer and he likes tunerstudio better than motecs software).
    MPtune is nowhere near as easy to use and understand as tunerstudio, even with an ostrich you will have about 1/4 of the tuning options in regards to acceleration enrichment, table switching, injection timing, table blending strategies, ad you will always be stuck running batch fire injection and single coil distributor ignition. there's just no comparison between the stock ecu and Megasquirt or any other aftermarket standalone engine management system- its like comparing an early 90's vintage 386 pc running windows 3.1 to a modern PC.
    Last edited by crusty shadow; 01-08-2015 at 08:44 PM.

  5. #5
    Rhymes with tortoise. Turbo Mopar Staff cordes's Avatar
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    Quote Originally Posted by crusty shadow View Post
    You wont find any Megasquirt info in the knowledge base here because a majority of the members on this forum have a belief that the stock electronics are the only way to go. They don't like it because its nota "plug and play" setup for our cars- you will have to rewire a lot of the engine compartment, most people will run away screaming with their hands flailing above their heads if they have to mess with rewiring anything.

    snip.
    I think this is the reason why most think stock electronics are the way to go.




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    Super Moderator Turbo Mopar Staff contraption22's Avatar
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    Mike Marra
    1986 Plymouth Horizon GLMF "The Contraption" < entertaining sponsorship offers
    Project Log:
    http://www.turbo-mopar.com/forums/showthread.php?69708-The-Contraption-2013-14&highlight=

  7. #7
    Rhymes with tortoise. Turbo Mopar Staff cordes's Avatar
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    Quote Originally Posted by contraption22 View Post
    Those are great examples of well done megasquirt cars. Yours will be a great example very shortly too. All involved are using 2.4s which have a ton of support for MS. IMO there's not enough in the advantage column for an 8v to justify the switch. Especially for $4K. Holy cow.

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    Super Moderator Turbo Mopar Staff contraption22's Avatar
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    MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    I did a lot of thinking about this. I did get really lucky with some custom calibrations for the SMEC. By lucky I mean that I had a friend that was able to create a calibration that worked for me. When it came time to decide what to do with a completely new engine combination, I had to weigh whether it makes sense to invest the time and money into being able to tune my own Smec, or aftermarket engine management. I really could have gone either way. Certainly the more expensive engine management systems were out of the budget.
    The biggest downside to investing in tuning the OE electronics, is that once you invested in all the equipment and time, you'll be fully able to tune 30-year-old Chrysler's, and that's pretty much it. If you take that time and money and invested into any aftermarket engine management system, that knowledge is portable to any other engine platform. Theoretically once I have a good working knowledge of mega squirt, I'll be able to tune my own car or a friend's neon or another friend's mustang or somebody else's Miata or BMW.
    I'm not sure what the stumbling block is with running mega squirt on a 2.2, but the only major difference I can see would be the ignition. And if that's the issue why not convert to distributorless ignition, with a crank trigger?
    Last edited by contraption22; 01-09-2015 at 12:37 AM.
    Mike Marra
    1986 Plymouth Horizon GLMF "The Contraption" < entertaining sponsorship offers
    Project Log:
    http://www.turbo-mopar.com/forums/showthread.php?69708-The-Contraption-2013-14&highlight=

  9. #9
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    Quote Originally Posted by contraption22 View Post
    I did a lot of thinking about this. I did to get really lucky with some custom calibrations for the SMEC. By lucky I mean that I had a friend that was able to create a calibration that worked for me. When it came time to decide what to do with a completely new engine combination, I had to weigh whether it makes sense to invest the time and money into being able to tune my own Smec, or aftermarket engine management. I really could have gone either way. Certainly the more expensive engine management systems were out of the budget.
    The biggest downside to investing in tuning the OE electronics, is that once you invested in all the equipment and time, you'll be fully able to tune 30-year-old Chrysler's, and that's pretty much it. If you take that time and money and invested into any aftermarket engine management system, that knowledge is portable to any other engine platform. Theoretically once I have a good working knowledge of mega squirt, I'll be able to tune my own car or a friend's neon or another friend's mustang or somebody else's Miata or BMW.
    I'm not sure what the stumbling block is with running mega squirt on a 2.2, but the only major difference I can see would be the ignition. And if that's the issue why not convert to distributorless ignition, with a crank trigger?
    there is no stumbling block other than it doesn't plug in. I have no clue why some people have such a hard on for working with 25+ year old wiring that's crumbling and falling apart other than it plugs in.
    being able to ditch the distributor ignition and go full sequential injection are among the reasons I went with Megasquirt on my car. I run GM LSx truck coils, one per cylinder. mounting a 36-1 wheel is not hard at all, just requires some planning, and I worked out how to mount it with virtually no runout, anyone with access to a mig welder can do it successfully.







    you'll never be able to do anything like that with the factory computer.

    also keep in mind the 36-1 wheel will provide FAR more accurate timing than the factory ecu. I measured a while back and there are spots in the engine cycle where the crank will rotate way too many degrees with no timing input from the hep sensor in the turbo distributor. it was a cheap hack of a design from Chrysler, no cal will fix that.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7-0pTCRX-hw

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vWBaAOyY5CY

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQY5SVEGzRo

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XuxdXNWBIps

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qU5WD8U0_8Q

  10. #10
    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    Quote Originally Posted by cordes View Post
    TAll involved are using 2.4s which have a ton of support for MS.
    What's the difference Brian? They are all internal combustion engines which is all the similarity you really need. I'm not really familiar with how well the 2.2/2.5 trigger code worked but I agree with crusty that ditching the distributor is the way to go anyway. Adding a 36-1 wheel isn't really hard to do and provides a very stable, dependable and supported crank trigger.

    To the OP, MS is a great system and will cover the needs of 90% of the people out there. When it comes to running and tuning an engine with many of the options like launch control, flat shift, N2O control, rev limits, boost control, WB feedback, customized O2 tables, table switching, adjusting the control of almost every sensor, data logging, auto-tuning, etc, etc, MS is very, very hard to beat from a price standpoint.

    I can easily think of a bunch of people successfully tuning their own cars on standalones (not just MS) vs. a handful of those pushing the limits with stock electronics, not to mention doing it real time and with the added features. I also think those who are advocates for stock electronics have never really buried themselves in a standalone like MS and saw how easy and versatile it really is, or they want to meet their goals and be able to say it was done on stock electronics which is of course a valid stance to take.

    In the end each to their own, as long as they are enjoying their hobby.

  11. #11
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    another thing about datalogging- watch the vids of the land speed runs I posted, if you look at the datalog info , they are datalogging things like engine oil pressure, fuel pressure, crankcase pressure, EGT - even how much the front and rear suspension are moving. you can datalog anything if you can get a sensor to supply the data you want. you'd have to add a separate datalog setup to do that with the stock electronics.

  12. #12
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    While my MS success was with a 2.0L dohc turbo neon, IF I had the same goals with my neon as I did with my shadow, I would have done the swap to MS. I find I can get by with meeting my goals in the shadow with factory style electronics, but if I wanted infinite tuning capabilities, I would jump into a MS system.

    Edit:

    Another vote for going with a MS system. Have you SEEN the amount of problems people have with custom calibrations?

  13. #13
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    I recently purchased the MegaSquirt 2 kit with the MapDaddy 4 bar map sensor upgrade. I still need to buy the launch control and boost control mod kits to complete it before I start putting everything together. For me, my diagnostics rely on what I can see on my wideband, reading plugs, and pulling codes from the on board diagnostics. If something goes wrong, I have to jump on here to ask others to help diagnose whats going. I personally like the fact that I can see and adjust everything myself on a laptop. I also learn tuning and in depth about fuel injection and ignition on the engine while going through the process. I know success stories have come from using stock electronics and wiring, such as the above with James and Rob. But, that doesn't necessarily mean its the only route.

    I believe that this is a really conservative community, and since there haven't been many of us who run MS post up big numbers or impressive timeslips, let alone not many writeups about the process of converting (save for Unaclockers page) to MS, that people tend to shy away from it and stick to stock electronics because its easy and it already works. The stock turbo already works, but we still upgrade it to newer and more efficient units; why should the electronics be any different? Yeah, you could get the LM or SMEC socketed, and then do flash tuning that way, but I honestly believe that to be late 90's tech.

    When I do my conversion, I'll be making videos and documenting EVERYTHING I do in order for those who want to upgrade, have something to follow.

    Speaking of which, Crusty Shadow, how did you hook up the coils and such like that?? I've asked how to set up COP ignition before while retaining the stock distributer as use for the cam sensor. How does it fire the coils and sparks and all? Do you have a write up?

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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    BoostedDrummer- you wont be able to run COP ignition with MSII, sequential injection is possible but it requires modification to the MSII daughter card- very easy to ruin the card doing that if you're not very careful when adding jumpers.

    If you haven't begin assembling it I recommend returning the MSII and getting MSIII with the MS3X expansion card. That setup has 8 individual ignition outputs and 8 fuel injector outputs already on it.
    how I got it to work- 36-1 crank trigger that you see in the pics, I made a new shutter wheel for the distributor, a half-moon style. if you don't want to mess with making a new shutter wheel you can use an 84-85 turbo distributor as it has a half moon style shutter wheel. The LSx coils have an igniter circuit built in so there is no need to add high current coil drivers to the MS- just connect the coils directly to the ignition outputs. I have a write up for the crank trigger install on the other forum but did not do a write up on the shutter wheel modification. it was just a simple matter of cutting the teeth off the original wheel, making a new one out of a piece of 2 1/4" exhaust pipe and welding it to the base of the original shutter wheel. I did that over using the 84-85 distributor because 1- I already had a couple N/A distributors laying around, 2- the early style distributor is about 1 1/2"- 2" taller and would have been in the way of where I wanted to mount my coils.

    oh, almost forgot- launch control/antilag/boost control is built in with the MSIII/MS3X setup, just connect it to the boost control solenoid and let it rip.

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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    I was running COP and seq. Inj. on an MSII with a P&H board.

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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    ^ I was gonna buy the Peak and Hold board mod.

    I'm pretty sure you can run COP with MS2 as I have a buddy of mine who's got a turbo LS Camaro (3rd gen) running COP and E85. I don't believe he has any modifications to his board, just a regular MS2, 3.0 mainboard that he built in his garage. Not sure what firmware code he loaded though.

    Currently, I have bought a 1985 turbo dizzy, the MS2 with MD4 bar, and a holset he351cw. I still need to buy the 36-1 trigger wheel, P&H board, boost/launch control mod kits, a laptop(from pawn shop or craigslist), the wiring harness, and a jig for mounting the 36-1 to the crank. I might be missing a few other little things. Eventually the end result will hopefully be around 500whp with E85.

    Crusty, do you still make the wooden jigs to mount the trigger wheels with no runout? If so, I'd be your bestest friend ever

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    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor mopar-tech's Avatar
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    I have a project here that I'll be jumping in this winter with MS2.

    It will be a V8 with batch fired injection and forced induction.

    A word on cals- Getting a cal right requires a lot of know-how on how the various tables interact with each other and of course what mods were done to the vehicle. I did a lot of real world road testing (even going to the track and hand tuning peoples cars) and dyno testing. Throw in the wild card of old vehicles with suspect wiring and engines prone to being off a tooth on the time and it gets to be a real PITA.


    It is time, buckle up.

  18. #18
    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor Ondonti's Avatar
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    For $4k I would be looking at Pro EFI, never heard of Pro-M. Pro-EFI will do everything MS will do "ease" wise and then some. It will also safeguard your engine if you set it up properly.
    MS keeps changing so much, its like you never have a release quality product. I have had a car function, then a new firmware update fubars the settings forever because nobody cares about what parameters you might need for your car. MS can even be as rudimentary as having to go in and edit the underlying files to make a feature work that should work from the beginning! I am still enfuriated how they accept speed sensor data and do NOTHING cool with it. They could have amazing launch control, boost control, traction control, all if they actually used what data the MS will accept. The MS developers are not racers, they are scientists.

    An example of how offbeat Megasquirt is. Set your launch control at 3800 rpms. Try doing a proper rev matching down shift. Oh, correction, Megasquirt has decided you want to do launch control at 50mph! Okay. Crunch goes your shift as the rpms stay at 3800 when you need to rev much higher for your downshift. BTW, megasquirt did know you are going 50mph if you wired that input, but no developer thinks you care to do anything but datalog that information.

    OEM tuning would probably feel just as hackish as MS if you are good with it. I mean that in a good way. OEM will mean people here will have interest in answering your questions, I consider that a good thing. MS dropped support for 2.2/2.5 decoding which is annoying. Megasquirt does feel pretty awesome when you have no tuning options like the 3.0 suffers from. It makes an insane difference going from zero to almost decent.

    I would love to spend on Pro EFI but I have 3 cars that need to run aftermarket management and that would either split me between two systems or cost way too much. Your car will be faster and safer on Pro EFI, faster simply because of the traction control options. Its not junky AEM traction control either. I will probably end up with an MS2E car and maybe two MS3x cars one of these days. The lack of features with MS is actually killing my motivation to finish the potential MS3x cars.

    Wanna run SDS? I don't want mine.
    Last edited by Ondonti; 01-10-2015 at 07:43 AM.
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  19. #19
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    I thought Megasquirts launch control was activated by a switch? Maybe you're forgetting to turn it off? I've heard it can also be used as a valet mode lol

  20. #20
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
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    Re: MegaSquirt Successes Needed

    This is exactly the discussion that I was looking for, and the reason I am hesitant to try MegaSquirt. Every time I believe that I can use it, I hear of people who are frustrated with it. I don't mind tinkering, but don't want to spend weeks trying to get the car tuned, when I should be at the track.

    Pro-M EFI is their full name:
    http://www.promracing.com/pro-m-efi-...i-systems.html

    Please keep the discussion going, as I think this will be valuable to me and others.

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