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mobythevan

86 RX7 with Turbo LM7 and Megasquirt

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I am copying my project thread that I started on another site over here because this is really my home. It may seem kind of weird that it shows up all the sudden with twenty some posts. I started this car build on June 7th, 2007. At first I swapped an LS1, but it ended up having a cracked block. All of that is documented here:


The LS1 megasquirt write up is at this link, I had too many copies floating around.

http://http://forums.hybridz.org/topic/56981-ls1-megasquirt-install/
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I have been on hybridz for a while and seeing Scottie leave to build his RX7 got me thinking this direction. I picked up the car about a month ago and have been researching on this site. Thanks to Silicone_Boy I picked up the LS1 last weekend. I went ahead and ordered the kit from Grannys. Grant said all the parts are in stock so I am expecting the kit by the end of the week.

I am going to put a 700r4 behind it to get started because I have one already and the aluminum driveshaft to go with it(from 89 firebird). Unless its extra pricey to get the aluminum driveshaft shortened. I checked with the local shop and they will shorten but I didn't talk about price yet.


Here are a couple pics from the weekend:

bye_rotary.jpg
engine_bay1.jpg
LS1.jpg

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Ok, I have some updates. I got my kit in from Grant. Everything looks good. I am going to powerwash the engine bay and transmission tomorrow. Also got my adapter spacer for the 700r4 behind the LS1.

 

The two biggest things I will be doing different on my swap from most people is using the 700r4 and Megasquirt ECU on the LS1. I know that will draw some flak, I read the old posts :ugh: . The problem is that to make the stock LS1 ecu work I need hptuners/MAF sensor/MAP sensor/IAC sensor (all missing on my engine). I am not familiar with it and that is a lot of money. I would not be happy with just a reprogram, I have become use to having a tuneable ECU and wideband on all my cars. The last part of my defense is that I have installed megasquirt on 7 cars now and I know it inside and out. That is worth a lot to me at this point, so megasquirt it is and I'll just have to take the flaming. That desicion right there knocks $700 off my build price. The total build of the car looks like it will $4000. This will be no AC, no PS, no Heater for now. I am targeting July 31st to hit the track. I've been through a few swaps so I think I have a pretty clean plan this time and I am willing to add PS,AC, heater and other misc stuff in a second phase over this winter.

 

Parts I have on order:

radiator

radiator mounts

TV cable kit for LS1 (from bowtie overdrives for the 700r4)

walbro 255 in tank pump

Battery relocation kit

LS1 Lokar throttle cable

LS1 flexplate (went ahead and bought one off ebay, hope its right)

Bolts to cap power steering

B&M hammer shifter

 

Parts I have:

86 RX7 sport (I think)

Megasquirt ECU and relay board

adjustable FPR

LS1

LS1 700r4 flexplate adapter spacer thing

700r4

swap kit and diff flange (just stick with NA diff to get going)

 

The biggest time consuming things from my past experience will be the exhaust which I will just fab myself from aluminized mandrel pieces and shortening the aluminum driveshaft(waiting on the shop because there welder is down).

 

The Megasquirt on the LS1 is a pretty big unknown because only a few people are running it and the code was just updated on June 12th to support the cam sensor input correctly. I always have the stock ECU to fall back on, just a more expensive and unknown option for me.

 

Anyway, that is the first update, see where I get this week. I can't wait to drive this car after riding in Silicone_Boy's LS7 car.

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Hello purple power degreaser, goodbuy skin. Better wear gloves next time, but it works great for the engine bay.

 

I got the exhaust, driveshaft and heat shields all removed. Removed the seats. Removed the clutch master. Cut the tunnel bumps out and cut the radiator steel out. I think I'm ready to install, but I'm still waiting on a flexplate. Hope it shows up this week so I can try installing the engine and tranny. I went ahead and purchased the C4 driveshaft to make life easier and save some money over shortening my firebird aluminum shaft. Oh, I also plugged the 3 holes in the power steering for now.

 

Here are a couple more pics, this car was in really good condition. And yeah, I live way out in the country.

 

S_Picture_1671.jpg

 

S_Picture_1670.jpg

 

S_Picture_1680.jpg

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The flexplate did not make it in yet. Well it gave me time to go over everything twice this weekend. I attached the motor mount plates to the LS1. I had to drill a hole out bigger on one of the LS1 adapter plates because the GM motor mount would not line up with all three holes, hmmmm. I test fit the engine cradle to the engine out of the car. It fits, so I put the engine cradle in the car loosely. It took me two hours to get those two PS hard lines to connect with the cradle installed, what a pain those fittings are to get the threads started.

 

Here is the quick list for the last weeks worth of work: Cleaned my engine, installed the walbro in tank pump, removed the mazda ECU and harness, put together my vette drivehsaft with conversion u-joint and granny's flange, blocked off the EGR and AIR holes on stock LS1 exhaust manifolds, removed intake manifold/starter/alternator, test fit my shortened serpetine belt, made an IAC blockoff plate, blocked off LS1 oil sender hole, test fit engine cradle, installed engine cradle in car, replaced the filter in the 700r4 and added a drain plug to the pan.

 

Where is my FLEXPLATE???? Damn shippers. I am ready to see the engine setting in the car! It should be here tonight. (wife called while I was typing this and said the flexplate came in, :D )

 

Jack Stand Racing

Picture_1752.jpg

 

Cleaned and prepped LS1

Picture_1748.jpg

 

Drain Plug Installed (yawn)

Picture_1749.jpg

 

Cradle installed with bolt loose

Picture_1751.jpg

Picture_1750.jpg

 

Hammer Shifter

Picture_1746.jpg

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Got the engine and tranny installed tonight. Thought I would post this while I can remember the details. People said I would have to slot the holes on the LS1 flexplate to work with the 700r4 converter pattern of 298mm vs the 4L60E pattern of 300mm, but I didn't have to because the other set of bolt holes lined up perfect. I was just getting ready to slot it and put the flexplate on the converter again, whats this, the other hole pattern works.:D

 

Engine went in smooth, having the right tools makes all the difference. I installed it by myself, nice and easy. Didn't bang the firewall or anything. Both bolts started easy in the cradle(just had to pull on the engine a little with one hand and start them with the other. Measured the tranny output shaft for center between the framerails, looked good. Drilled the holes and that was it, its all bolted in.

 

There is pretty much only room for a knats a$$ between the pssgr head and the firewall. But it doesn't touch. I am very pleased with Granny's kit at this point. Not sure how my tranny dipstick is going to fit?? That was the biggest thing I saw tonight that could spell trouble.

 

Also test fit the vette driveshaft. With the slip yoke slid all the way in, it looks like I have an inch of space on the rear flange. So that seems to confirm that a longer slip yoke would work. I will look at it more closely tomorrow and see what I think. I have a longer slip yoke, but it is 2 inches longer, so I'm pretty sure that won't work. The vette shaft as is may engage enough to be fine.

 

 

Spacer for the 700r4

Picture_1757.jpg

 

Picture_1756.jpg

Picture_1755.jpg

Picture_1754.jpg

Picture_1753.jpg

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Just came in for lunch and encountered a few things this morning. The vacuum port on the rear of the LS1 intake does not clear the firewall without some hammer work. The drivers stock LS1 exhaust manifold clears everything with plenty of room, but the passenger one hits the firewall at the flange. This is in the rear mounting holes on the cradle. I plan to cut off both factory flanges and weld on new smaller ones.

 

Also, the lip on the firewall virtually touches the LS1 intake, so I bent it up with a crescent wrench. I got pictures of all this, I will post them later. Other than that I just continue marching down the list. Hope to start wiring up the megasquirt tomorrow, but I may burn out and have to go do something else for the day.

 

I will be using megasquirt for fuel and spark. Now they have new code to support the crank and cam sensors for wasted spark. I will be firing two coils at a time. The megasquirt will still run in batch mode firing alternating so half the injectors then the other half that way you can split the pressure drop on the rails. I'll probably set it up to fire injectors like 1,3,6,8 then 5,7,2,4 or something like that.

 

My rx7 was a 5 spd so I didn't have the factory auto shifter or I would have tried to use it. But the Hammer looks like fun.

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I had to cut about 4 inches out of the support on the hood to clear the LS1 throttle body. I didn't get pictures of that yet. Also looks like I will need to cut a little to clear the radiator cap. That way the radiator sets high enough to hopefully make the belly pan install easier.

 

Bending proportioning valve out of the way

Picture_1786.jpg

 

Had to hammer firewall for vacuum port clearance on LS1 intake

T_Picture_1784.jpg

 

Lip on firewall to close IMO, bent it a little

 

Picture_1783.jpg

Picture_1782.jpg

 

Radiator first pass, got to add isolators now

Picture_1780.jpg

 

Vette slip yoke versus firebird slip yoke. Firebird is 1/2 inch longer(even though I messed the picture up, it is 1/2 inch), which looked worth swapping since I needed to put in a new u-joint anyway. So I used the firebird one and the driveshaft looks good to me, before it was marginal on whether it engaged into the tranny far enough. The extra half inch makes me feel better.

Picture_1776.jpg

 

And then the shifter saga, cut the tunnel and built a box like everyone else.

 

Picture_1785.jpg

Picture_1779.jpg

Picture_1778.jpg

Picture_1777.jpg

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Went to the junkyard yesterday and picked up a two speed taurus fan for $15. That was one of the last pieces I need for the car. I am down to what I am calling the final three:

 

1. Exhaust system

2. Wire Megasquirt

3. Wire battery/starter/alternator

 

That is about all that is left before starting and test driving. I still have to finish the gauges, but I will have megasquirt to read out everything critical except oil pressure. I will hook up an oil pressure gauge for the first few drives, then it looks like I will be going with a whole new set of autometer gauges.

 

Oh, and the snafu this week, I was sent the wrong TV cable kit for LS1 and 700r4 combo. So another one is on its way.

 

Pretty much have the Megasquirt wired and modded for 8 cylinder wasted spark. I need to buy some terminals today to finish connecting the battery and alternator wires. Also got my fuel filter and FPR mounted, but didn't get a pic of that yet. I am all but done with wiring megasquirt and starter/battery/alternator. BTW, I went ahead and installed one of those self excited regulators in my alternator. Down to exhaust now and then start trying to fire up:D

 

Clearanced the hood for TB, intake pipe, radiator cap. Everything clears now.

Picture_1794.jpg

 

Picture_1793.jpg

 

Intake pipe with air temp sensor for megasquirt. Fan is not mounted yet.

Picture_1792.jpg

 

Ever see an LS1 harness hacked off like this? :ohnoes:

Picture_1791.jpg

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Thought I would snap a quick picture, the radiator is a little crooked because I haven't put the rubber isolators in yet. The main thing in this picture was that I wanted a fuel pressure gauge on the rail, but the gauge sticks up too high and hits the hood. I use a -4AN to 1/8NPT to put the gauge on the schrader fitting. To clear the hood I had to use one of the 45 degree 1/8NPT fittings and angle the gauge down. I really need this because I am using a boost reference adjustable FPR, so I want to keep an eye on the pressure as I go.

 

Picture_1850.jpg

 

Hey guys, a huge oppurtunity for this car just fell in my lap. I haven't finished the deal yet so I can't tell you what it is. With any luck next Monday I will be able to unveil the new buy....

 

As for firing my car I am waiting on the TV cable system for the 700r4 and a mechanical speedo tailhousing. Should be in this week then I can get serious about starting it and verifying that the megasquirt code is going to work for ignition control.

 

Finally got the right TV cable kit for the LS1. Got it installed last night. I had to replace a spring inside the transmission, but it wasn't too hard to do under the car. In order to make it to the drag strip by August 3rd I decided to temporarily locate the battery in the stock location. That is done. I also just tossed the factory overflow bottle on the pssgr side. I will remove both of those after August is over. The track is closed after august 24th for Friday night drags so I have to hurry.

 

Looks like I will be firing or trying to fire this weekend. Now that the transmission is finished I only have to run the tranny cooler lines, mount the electric fan, do one heat shield by the brake booster, finish the radiator hoses, and the exhaust. That still gives me 2 full weeks to work out any issues with heating, tuning, etc. I am just going to borrow the wideband from my Talon to tune the car. I am stoked, I haven't been to the drag strip since August 2006.

 

 

If you look close you can see how I set up my fuel system using an MSD adjustable regulator. The FPR is before the fuel rail just like the corvette filter/fpr combo. I ran a hard line under the booster up into the corner where I located the fuel filter.

Picture_1852.jpg

 

Just another pic from the front. Tranny dipstick is installed (lokar one was awesome, thanks for the tip guys). Tranny cooler location. Battery and washer bottle temporarily mounted so I can make it to the track.

Picture_1851.jpg

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Got my dual 2.5" mandrel bent exhaust done Saturday. Wired up the megasquirt today and fired the engine. Just ran it for a few seconds. I have to make some updates to the megasquirt notes.

 

Now I just need to get my lower radiator hose in and wire the electric fan before I can take a test drive. Oh, and I have to do 2 heat shields by the fuel lines.

 

My rx7 oil gauge is not working even though I can measure like 68 ohms with the multimeter throught the wire to ground??

 

Pretty awesome to see it fire up with megasquirt, no hopefully every thing else is fine with the engine and tranny, won't know until I run it some more.

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Here are some pics from the exhaust install. Since the manifolds are just steel, I added the downpipe section to them. I like the way it turned out. I need a couple heat shields by the fuel lines, but the pipe is pretty far away.

 

driver side manifold

exhaust3.jpg

 

pssgr side manifold

exhaust5.jpg

 

Got the car a bit higher with 6 ton jackstands to have some room.

exhaust6.jpg

 

pssgr side below the car

exhaust4.jpg

 

Driver side pipe

exhaust2.jpg

 

Everything installed

exhaust1.jpg

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Ok, I have it in my hands now, so I can let the world know. I'll get some pics to show the monstrosity, but if you looked at the single turbo LS1 in the thread that Scottie linked from hybridz then that pretty much gives you the idea on size. But don't fear, I will drive the car at least a few months and get 1/4 mile times, then probably mess with this over the winter. I take what oppurtunities I can and when this showed up locally I talked to Majestic turbo about coupling it with the LS1.

 

But first thing is first, get the car to the track August 3rd.

 

tv7111_1.jpg

 

I am pretty sure it will fit behind the pssgr headlight, will definitely require some cutting and fitting in that area. I think I have a pretty good plan using a water to air intercooler. We'll see. The AR is large, that is why I talked it over with majestic turbo.

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I am down to just a handful of small things before I can drive the car. Last night I wired the neutral safety and backup lights to the B&M shifter. Also finished my crank vent setup. Still on the list:

 

1. Exhaust hangers

2. Move the fuel return line(too close to the exhaust manifold by brake booster)

3. heat shield under car for fuel lines

4. lower radiator hose

5. Ordered the 31052 bump stop for pinion snubber, but don't need that to test drive.

6. Wire the electric fan (megasquirt controls the relay for it)

7. Re-wire coil power to megasquirt to stop key on backfires

8. Wire tach (megasquirt runs stock tach using configurable tach output pin), don't need this to test drive

 

 

Here are the mockup pictures for the turbo, but I am not going to do any serious work on this until probably October. Hotside flange will come up just below the LS1 water pump heater hose outlets. Charge pipe goes straight down and clears everything. Plenty of room for downpipe. Only thing is a custom weird bent intake pipe to put the air filter in front of the radiator. Looks like it will clear the hood because in the pics it was setting a couple inches high due to heater hoses in the way. BTW, if the TV71 flow is not enough for you the housing can be turned to fit an 88mm wheel. I've got an extra set of LS1 heads (casting 241?), I plan to send those in for CNC porting and when I do install the turbo I will swap the heads and change the cam.

 

tv71_mockup1.jpg

 

Don't pay attention to the pvc coupler in the top radiator hose, that was for mockup. I am making a steel tube to go in there for real.

tv71_mockup2.jpg

 

tv71_mockup3.jpg

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check out this link, a little ways down the page it has the exact dimensions of the TV71.

 

Turbotech - Australia's specialist in turbochargers - Garrett Turbochargers

 

It will be very difficult to get it to fit and keep the headlight and hood as is, but I think it can be done. I wondered about having the water pump heater outlets cut off and welded shut (have to research if that causes a flow problem or not). Like I say, I am just tossing the idea right now like you. But I don't have anything planned for this winter

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Unbelievable !! Major BAD news guys, my LS1 was apparently destroyed when I bought it. I was told (and I have no reason to doubt it) that is was a 99 LS1 with 89K miles, but ran good. Might want to freshen it up, or just toss it in and have fun. I figured it is a good engine, so I didn't pull the plugs or check compression.

 

Well, here goes the story. Sunday I fired the engine to verify that megasquirt would start it and everything was wired correctly. I am not exaggerating here, I ran it dry (no coolant) for 15 seconds at idle. Just enough to see it start and idle and then me and my friend go WTF? What is that weird high pitch sort of whistling grinding noise? It immediately made the noise upon firing, seemed to be coming from the intake air filter. Fired it again for about 10 seconds to listen at the air filter, yeah it was loud as hell there, just a continuous high pitch whining like sucking maybe 10,000CFM or something. So shut it down and hoped that maybe running the water pump dry was making a whistling sound or something? My thoughts were to re-visit once the coolant was in and I could let it idle longer to listen with the stethoscope.

 

So last night everything is put together, I mean everything. I was hoping to take it for a test drive. Fire it again with coolant full and there is that high pitch whistle/grind noise from the air filter. I shut it down right away. OMG, this can't be happening. So I think for a second, then pull the dipstick to check my oil level for lack of anything else to do. OMG, coolant in the oil and I mean like a gallon of coolant in the oil. Pull the radiator cap, yes the coolant level is way down. Pull the oil drain plug and about 3 quarts of straight coolant setting under the oil comes out. At this point I am pretty much in shock, no dragstrip on August 3rd, so much for my great deal LS1 engine, I'm not even going to get a test drive......

 

I pull all the plugs next. I don't think they were ever pulled before because they had the resistance from thread treatment all the way out. And number 1 I pulled the other day to locate TDC, it didn't have the resistance so I think the plugs were not pulled by the other owner. I haven't called him yet because I don't believe he knew any of this, but I'll call him just for any other info he might have. Anyway all the plugs look good except number 8. The electrode is smashed in and wet as hell, oh ♥♥♥♥! That is pretty much were I zoned out and just went into mindless mode. Pulled the intake, coils, valve cover, head.

 

Here are the pictures, sleeve is cracked all the way, block is cracked, piston is destroyed, head is destroyed. What in the hell would have caused all of this? This was suppose to be a pullout from a running car that was wrecked. Wrecked with the throttle wide open until the cops arrived??? Can any of this be salvaged or is the block just scrap now? This had to be this way when I bought the engine, there is no way I can believe that kind of damage would occur from 3 15 second runs at idle. We would have heard devastation like that if the piston was flying apart right? I have never grenaded an engine but I have heard various noises before and my new exhasut is quite.

 

 

piston_sleeve.jpg

 

cracked_block2.jpg

 

cracked_block.jpg

 

cylinder_head.jpg

 

I don't even have a plan at this point, I'm still trying to pull together. If the block is toast, then I only seem to have 3 options:

 

1. Buy another pullout LS1

2. I have a TPI engine in the garage

3. I have a 454 with roots supercharger built for my streetrod, but the streetrod is years from being finished. It would be ridiculous to put the BBC in the rx7 right?

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Will my parts interchange with a 4.8l? Like intake, alternator, water pump? Thanks for the help, I am just screwed at this point until I can dig something up, unless you guys really want to see that BBC in there, here is a pic of it:

 

It had a distributor in this picture, but it actually run distributorless wasted spark, and is fuel injected with Megasquirt control. It is built and I have fired it, very tempting at this point since I am interested in drag racing and not really street or road racing.

 

S_Picture_1508.jpg

 

I pulled everything out last night and got it organized in preparation for finding another engine. I figured the best way to handle the bad luck was to work twice as hard to make it to the racetrack. Tonight I picked up the infamous 31052 pinion snubber on the way home. I will get it installed in the down time.

 

This reminds me of those goofy bad news/good news commercials on TV. The bad news is my LS1 is cracked, the good news is that it was easy to install the mechanical speedo tailhousing with the tranny pulled :D

 

After doing some quick research and looking around it seems there are several LM7's in the area and that is what I am going to do with the car. That just concretes installing the TV71 turbo. I can always get the smaller turbine housing for the TV71 if the 5.3 doesn't spool it good enough. So I'm taking the truck into town tomorrow and hopefully coming home with an LM7 that has a 30-90 day warranty from the local salvage yard. Then I can install it This weekend and see where I stand.

 

My main goal still stands to get the engine in and go to the dragstrip in August with no turbo, then drive the car until October. After that I will start the turbo stuff. Of course if my rear end blows, or the tranny blows then I will start sooner.

 

That was a close call though, I almost tried to fit that BBC in there before I regained my sanity. I measured and the supercharger belt would have run about one hair away from the radiator. :eek: Not to mention it would look like one of those cartoon cars with 2 feet of blower sticking out the top. :laugh:

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Keep in mind I'm running the 700r4.

 

I picked up a 5.3 today from the salvage yard. 44k miles. I'm taking the rest of today off work and heading home to start installing it.

 

Looks like I will need to swap the oil pan, intake, coil packs and water pump right off the bat.

 

Hopefully will be running and tuning on Sunday.

 

 

 

I printed out the list of stuff to swap from the LS1 to 5.3 from the thread by Kingwalrus. I am in the middle of it right now and just came in to eat something. Its all going good so far. Looks like I am going to need to rent a pulley installer tomorrow to swap pulleys. I pulled both of them already, but my installer only works on old SBC/BBC.

 

What an adventure. I am already preparing myself in case the transmission goes or the rear end goes

 

here is the list of stuff to swap on the 5.3 from kingwalrus's post:

A hole must be drilled and tapped on the front of the block to accomodate the alternator. The hole just isn't there like it is on the LS1. M10x1.5 tap and a R sized cobalt drill bit makes quick work of the needed hole.

 

I had to use the following LS1 parts:

 

Oil pan

windage tray

oil pickup tube

dipstick tube (because the one that came with the motor was bent to ♥♥♥♥)

intake manifold

accessory mounting brackets

crank pulley

pilot bearing

fuel rails

water pump

belt tensioner

 

I also swapped the steam vent pipe.

 

I went into town this morning and luckily the dealer had 1 crankshaft bolt. And, just as lucky, Ace had the M16x2 all thread to make a nice pulley installer. If I don't have any trouble installing the pulley I will isntall the engine and tranny tonight. That will just about put me back on track. I can say one thing for certain, the 5.3 is one hell of a lot cleaner on the inside than the LS1 was. The LS1 had quite a bit of oil build up. THe 5.3 basicaly looks new inside.

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I actually talked to Ben about the engine, he said he woud refund my money. I told him I didn't feel right about him refunding because he was really screwed by the guy he bought it from, but he said he was refunding anyway. He is a good guy and I believe he did not know about the damage because he never tried to use the engine.

 

BTW, I got the 5.3 installed today. All that is left to do is reconnect the megasquirt relay board to the harness and I can fire the new engine. I'm waiting until tomorrow to fire it up, just to give me a night to think if I missed anything. I am going to do a compression check once it is warmed up just to be sure this time.

 

Hopefully will be test driving tomorrow!!

 

I went back through the time I spent on the car since discovering the carnage and it turns out to be right at 40 hours to pull it and do all the 5.3 changes, then re-install it. Not too bad, but I'm going to have to get a lot faster to compete with the Top Fuel guys:D

 

yeah, the 5.3 came with a 30 day warranty.

 

I got it fired up today. Remember that ear piercing whining noise, yeah it was still there. It turns out that I have blocked off the IAC on the TB with a plate, which left a huge hole in the TB. That was making all the noise, put the IAC back in the manifold, noise is gone. If you ever want to really annoy people and blow there ear drums just remove your IAC and put a blockoff plate there.

 

Set idle, checked charging circuit, oil pressure, etc. Idles real nice. I let it come up to temp and then shut down to do a bunch of little stuff so I can drive it. I mounted the megasquirt board and relay board. I've got some pictures, I'll get them posted tomorrow. Using the evap solenoid as my FIDLE control with megasquirt works pretty nice.

 

I think there are just about 10 or les little things left that I noticed today. One thing is that I need to connect the megasquirt tach output to the RX7 tach. That is a new feature and the MS will run the dash tach like the LS1 ECU does. It has the four cylinder output mode.

 

The big thing now is to get my wideband moved over from the Talon and tune the car. If things go good now I am planning to take the car to the Pueblo dragstrip on August 10th.

 

Oh, BTW, do you guys have any recomendations for the rev limit on the 5.3 engine? I did a quick search on ls1tech but didn't turn up anything. I had determined to set the LS1 to 6200.

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Pictures from the weekend:

 

Pile of swap parts from LS1 to LM7

swap_parts.jpg

 

LS1 oil pan

5_3_2.jpg

 

Drill and tap for second alternator bolt

5_3_1.jpg

 

LM7 installed

5_3_installed.jpg

 

Megasquirt mounted in engine compartment for drag races (I put those pink wires into the loom now)

megasquirt_mount.jpg

 

While I was installing the engine in the RX7 my friend finished his FMIC on his talon. Yeah, I'm going to blow that thing away :laugh:

wes_talon.jpg

 

So dieselgeek (who works with Parish on the vehicles AFAIK) told me that they are also installing megasquirt with the ignition control this week, but he didn't say which vehicle. I know he runs megasquirt on the truck, but only for fuel control last I heard. I hadn't heard if they are running it on the 5.3 car. I read through the thread and they are running completely stock internal except valve springs. I believe it, control the detonation and you can surpass most peoples expectations of reliability on any engine.

 

BTW, thanks for the encouragement on the project. Maybe the first test drive tonight, if not definitely tomorrow. My wife is really supportive of me with the cars, she has her own hobby/business with horses so it goes both ways.

 

I am starting to put some serious thought into my plan for the rear end setup and transmission once the turbo is installed. I will of course run until I break the stock diff, just in case, you never know

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I took the car for a drive last night, but it was a real short one. The driveshaft is binding so I have to re-check the angles again. I thought they were OK, but I guess not.

 

I'll check it out tonight and start tuning.

 

The thing is a beast for sure, I barely touched the gas in reverse and left two trenches in the dirt about 6 feet long. Yeah traction, I have none.

 

Picture_1885.jpg

 

OK, next update:

 

I got the driveshaft problem fixed good enough for now. I shimmed the tranny up a little bit. I drove the car a little bit with no tuning, didn't get after it at all until I tune. I installed the bung for the wideband sensor. My cooling fan is working well, controlled by megasquirt. My dash tach is working, also controlled by megasquirt. Water temp gauge is working in the dash. The oil temp in the dash does not work, so I have a cheapo summit oil gauge installed for now. I got my heat shield on to protect the fuel lines under the car. Also got a quicky heat shield to help protect the megasquirt while it is in the engine compartment.

 

I made a list of things to keep an eye on. One being the .040" clearance between the oil pan and steering rack. I have various things going on, mostly small stuff. I don't have any leaks and so far the car doesn't act like it has any steam/coolant heating issues.

 

I orderd the knock sensor interface module for megasquirt today to help with tuning. I talked with the guy that makes the module and he says it will work with the two LSx knock sensors. He also sets it up based on the cylinder bore which is 3.779 for the 5.3

 

Tonight I plan to work a bit on tuning the fuel and spark. I am also working to get insurance and plates on the car. Mainly so I can tune on the street, I live wayyyyy out in the sticks with plenty of unused roads to tune on.

 

Then the last thing I have to sort out is what tire to run at the dragstrip. I see that the 26x8.5 slicks work on the stock rims, but $300 for them and $100 for tubes?

 

Also, I have the pinion snubber, but have not installed it yet.

 

Otherwise I think I am just in the tune/troubleshoot phase now. Still targeting August 10th to hit the track, but I may not have tires sorted out by then, so it may be a traction limited track night.

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I got plates and insurance on the car. I also got the pinion snubber installed.

 

Started tuning on the road and found out that I am not getting a clean trigger signal to the Megasquirt from the LSx crank sensor.

 

I tried a couple quick tests from my past experience with megasquirt, but still the same behaviour. I am going to put a scope on the signal tonight and see what is happening. It is very likely that I am getting noise coupled into the crank sensor wire. I don't have it shielded right now and I placed megasquirt right next to the pssgr side coils.

 

rx7_pic.jpg

 

I think I found my problem with the trigger input to megasquirt not being steady, but I have to test the fix tonight.

 

I was powering my LSx crank and cam sensors with 5 volts, they are suppose to be powered with 12 volts. I have been emailing dieselgeek to try to figure this out and it came up that I was using the wrong voltage due to an assumption on my part. Typical megasquirt stuff.

 

Well, it drives pretty nice, I had to fix a couple places where my exhasut was hitting the body. The power steering rack is capped off, but it didn't seem too bad using armstrong :)

 

The problem is that I still didn't get that crank sensor trigger cleaned up to the megasquirt, so it is like running on 7 cylinders. Still enough to dig trenches all the way up my driveway. But I can't finish the tuning until I fix this. I am still a bit perplexed. I got a good scope on the system and everything checks out OK so far. Maybe a bug yet with the code since the LS1 mode is new and AFAIK no one is running the new code version on an LS1 to confirm. Maybe coupling noise on the crank sensor wire, but I doubt that because I see problems just during cranking with the coil and injectors disconnected.

 

I'll keep plugging away at it, bound to fix it sooner or later. If I don't get to the track in August there is a US performance series race on October 14th and a real street race on October 13th, so I'll shoot for those.

 

I have had some problems in the past with megasquirt installs that took a while to iron out, but for the most part I have had really good luck with it. Might just be my turn in the barrel :dunno:

 

I have been through a ton of experiments and I think I got it figured out. The newest addition to the megasquirt code for the cam sensor input is not working as advertised for me. No one else has confirmed it works yet, so I am just going to build a small pulse generator circuit to bypass this problem. The pulse circuit has been confirmed by other people. So with any luck tonight or tomorrow I will have it running 100% and finish tuning.

 

Definitely going to be updates to the megasquirt notes once I confirm this works.

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Fixed 3 things and now I get steady rpm and the car is running pretty good. I am working on tuning now. I updated the settings in this thread to reflect what I found.

 

1. I had a bad opto transistor, it finally quit all together.

2. I had some settings wrong in megatune.

3. I had a bunch of higher frequency noise all over my MS setup. I added bypassing caps to the following wires on the relay board (.01uF and .22uF): battery 12volt, switched 12v, crank sensor input, cam sensor input, injector bank 1 control, injector bank 2 control.

 

Now I am going to install the knocksense module to monitor while tuning.

 

Also, I get a little bit of popping out the pipe at about 80kpa and 2000rpm. Could that happen if I'm too rich, it is definitely rich right now as I am just starting tuning. I've got the wideband on it. That popping concerns me a little, but it only does it in that one spot at about half throttle. If I go WOT it doesn't do it, but I haven't looked over the log files yet.

 

I am going to continue tuning and cleaning up little things this week and take the car to the track in Pueble this Friday. It might not be much to see at this point unless I get a lot of time to tune on it, but its starting to run and this is the last test and tune.

 

Two pretty funny things from my wife, she was riding with me helping watch some things on the laptop. I am telling her that it just doesn't feel like its running that good, then I take off in 1st up to about 4K and ratchet up to 2nd. The car throws us back violently and burns the tires a bit. She looks over and says: "And you don't think its running good?"

 

Then I try a little launch, stock converter so I stall it at about 1100-1200 and let off the brake while mashing the throttle. From the passenger seat I hear "Woh". I asked her if she wanted to tune while I drive or if she wanted to drive. She said she would drive

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There is only one smiley that fits for last night: :owned:

 

Yeah, I decided to see how the engine runs now on 8 cylinders. Thats right, the last two weeks it has been running on 7. Now that I got all the computer signals cleaned up I noticed #2 was not firing(it would fire about 10% of the time). Changed the plug and the engine runs perfect now. That was also causing the popping out the pipe. Now it runs 100%, and the transmission isn't liking it. Feels like it is slipping. I'm going to get a pressure gauge on it and make sure the TV cable is adjusted correctly and go from there. The wife was with me again and now she knows what it really runs like :D I told her it wasn't running right, but I hadn't done any tuning yet so I kept dismissing the engine miss. Track this friday if I don't break it and if I can get the tranny to work.

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I got the TV cable setup adjusted better. For one thing I was only getting about 75% throttle. I fixed that and then re-adjusted the throttle body cam for the TV cable, then adjusted the TV cable itself. Now it switches gears from 1st to 2nd around 4800rpm and the car just fishtales. I haven't done any fuel tunng yet, it is 10-11 across the board at WOT. Also I have the timing set 2 degrees below a stock high octane map. So there will be plenty of room for improvement in fuel and spark tuning, but I can't get very good traction already.

 

My back tires were bald so I went this morning and got two new cheapo street tires for the back. I will get some slicks going in the next couple weeks, but after all the work I just want to get out and play a little.

 

I going to try to get the fuel map more around high 12's uner WOT tongiht and tomorrow then load it on the trailer and see what I learn at the track.

 

Next on the list will be a camshaft and valve spring change, torque converter and slicks.

 

Its starting to get fun now!!

 

You guys probably saw my trip to the track post. The 700r4 and the street tires were a dissapointment. I am getting a powerglide built locally for the car and putting slicks on it, then head back to the track. I am also swapping in the Z06 cam and springs. I got those ordered last week to raise my rev limit from the stock LM7 cam. I picked that cam because it will work well with the turbo for now. I am still not planning to start any of the turbo install until the car gets down the track good with glide/slicks/new cam.

 

At least this way I'll pick up a converter/trans brake and good transmission. Then I think I will only have to worry about how long the stock NA rear end lasts.

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