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250hp goal need advice


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Yes, there is a lot you can get out of a stock engine with good engine management.

 

Using the newfound fueling and timing control available, you can:

 

Tune the stock engine to higher power without resorting to expensive distributor recurves or hardly repeatable potentiometer tricks

 

Tune the newly cammed engine to higher power without the stock EFI choking on the extra air

 

Tune the newly cammed engine with well-designed headers to higher power without the stock EFI running out of fuel map

 

You get the idea...The stock EFI was a good system back in the day, and it still is a good system for a daily that you don't want any more out of...as long as it works right. Aftermarket, tunable EFI is a good system that allows immediate satisfaction and the ultimate fiddle-factor, as well as supporting and allowing other, more potent, modifications.

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"Stock Electronics" not handling 200 NA HP?

 

Look at the power levels of some BMW 2.8 Liter Engines, and realize swapping ECU's and AFM's is relatively easy to get a factory optimised curve for almost any 2.8 or 3.0 car (even 3.2) they're all Bosch-Licensed and as long as you know the pinouts and make the appropriate adjustments in wiring, "parts is parts".... This is 70's Tech...

 

But again, you guys suggesting turbo? Please go back to the "Megasquirt is too expensive" and realise that if the CHEAPEST Standalone is "Too Expensive" then there is NO MODIFICATION which will be in his price range to get the power he wants!

 

It's an unreasonably impossible budget for the power desired. Unless someone is digging for junkyard parts and has a strong base of knowledge to work from, that power level will NOT be done "cheaply"... Not N/A, and while the turbo may be 'Cheaper' it will NOT be THAT 'cheap'!

 

Speed costs money, his budget is effectively zero in terms of concrete performance enhancements. Stick with plug wires and proper performance tuneup. That's it. Anything else will just be frittering money down the drain.

 

If you don't have the money to do it properly the first time, when do you expect to have the money to do it over again? Just wait till the later and do it right the first time, you will be money and aggravation ahead! Until that time, be happy learning to tune to the maximum potential of what you have. Those skills will transfer to anything.

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"Stock Electronics" not handling 200 NA HP?

 

Look at the power levels of some BMW 2.8 Liter Engines, and realize swapping ECU's and AFM's is relatively easy to get a factory optimised curve for almost any 2.8 or 3.0 car (even 3.2) they're all Bosch-Licensed and as long as you know the pinouts and make the appropriate adjustments in wiring, "parts is parts".... This is 70's Tech...

 

But again, you guys suggesting turbo? Please go back to the "Megasquirt is too expensive" and realise that if the CHEAPEST Standalone is "Too Expensive" then there is NO MODIFICATION which will be in his price range to get the power he wants!

 

It's an unreasonably impossible budget for the power desired. Unless someone is digging for junkyard parts and has a strong base of knowledge to work from, that power level will NOT be done "cheaply"... Not N/A, and while the turbo may be 'Cheaper' it will NOT be THAT 'cheap'!

 

Speed costs money, his budget is effectively zero in terms of concrete performance enhancements. Stick with plug wires and proper performance tuneup. That's it. Anything else will just be frittering money down the drain.

 

If you don't have the money to do it properly the first time, when do you expect to have the money to do it over again? Just wait till the later and do it right the first time, you will be money and aggravation ahead! Until that time, be happy learning to tune to the maximum potential of what you have. Those skills will transfer to anything.

A disappointing and hard pill to swallow, but it's the truth. You can bench race all day long but when it comes down to brass tacks, fast ain't cheap and doesn't bolt on or happen overnight. Patience is a virtue. It's only taken me 40 some years to figure that out!

Edited by str8pipez
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So Tony, you are saying I should try to swap over an ecu and arm from an inline 6, 2.8-3 letier motor to start with, as well as doing a full tune up is that right? Even if I can't get a full 250hp out of it I want to start learning more about cheaper ways to improve what I already have while saving up for what I want. Are there any specific things I could do now to try and improve the performance of the stock motor other than those couple things I got from what you said earlier?

 

As for the BMW parts, I'm just guessing here but the plugs don't line up do they? A friend of mine has a BMW with an inline 6 as a parts car and I might be able to get the parts from him for.cheap or free.

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I'm kinda curious about Tony's suggestion of using a BMW ecu and afm now actually. Mainly because the parts are available to me and I've never heard of this being done before so I am hoping he decides to elaborate a little more on a how to chose and what to expect kinda deal. If you pull an ecu from a BMW 2.8 inline 6 that makes 184hp could you expect to get that same hp from your l series?

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250rwhp is not cheap staying NA. First step is to buy some turbo stuff and put it on. I need to go do a dyno session on my new turbo swap. All stock but damn it feels so much faster.

 

I'm actually looking into a megasquirt system now as I've been on and off the phone with matt at DIY about everything needed, how to wire stuff up etc. 

You've actually talked to Matt or anyone at DIY instead of the email ping pong?  Really?

Edited by motomanmike
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I think Tony was implying that you could find a Bosch Computer and AFM from a BMW FROM THE ERA, i.e. an L-jetronic computer and AFM, and that it would be possible to get it functional and working if you have good working knowledge of how to make the wiring harness and obtain the proper signaling that the BMW computer needed.

 

The Hitachi licensed copy is not an exact clone of a BMW system...but it's going to be very close. You would need to work out exactly how the BWM did timing, high-Z/low-Z injectors, injector sizing, fuel pressure, coolant temperature, ect.

 

Also, the Delphi/GM V6 computer has been used successfully to run the L-6 by a forum member here, check into Code59.

Edited by Xnke
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I'm kinda curious about Tony's suggestion of using a BMW ecu and afm now actually. Mainly because the parts are available to me and I've never heard of this being done before so I am hoping he decides to elaborate a little more on a how to chose and what to expect kinda deal. If you pull an ecu from a BMW 2.8 inline 6 that makes 184hp could you expect to get that same hp from your l series?

You are NOT getting it. These modifications are beyond you until you understand how an engine system interacts and functions. You don have this basic knowledge yet.

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"The Hitachi licensed copy is not an exact clone of a BMW system...but it's going to be very close. You would need to work out exactly how the BWM did timing, high-Z/low-Z injectors, injector sizing, fuel pressure, coolant temperature, etc."

 

I'm truly sorry I even mentioned it now...

 

 

All I can say is "No!"

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The key is KNOWLEDGE...

You don't have it, that route is not possible.

If the OP had knowledge at his disposal I doubt he'd have made this thread. Alas the bittersweet reality of forums. Though if he DID have a bit of knowledge, the path I'd suggest (should he want to stay L specific) would be to get MS2 up and running and then build a spare head on the side to throw onto his flatop block. $200 worth of machine work and lots of time in the garage working on the head, intake, and exhaust and he could certainly reach 200whp, and maybe even get close to 250 if he really tried good and proper...

 

...But he'd have to do a lot more research on his own to do that. I hope he can, and does, but so far that doesn't seem likely.

 

 

I'm truly sorry I even mentioned it now...

 

 

All I can say is "No!"

This gave me a good chuckle.

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Guess Tony thinks I was wrong about it being a close copy but not exact....Since I have both an original L28 N/A ECU and a BMW 1977-1978 E12 528i ECU here, both of which are Bosch L-jetronic licensed products, I can tell you that the pinouts and the connectors are NOT the same. Some of the sensors are different, and would require a little thinking to get them working. I didn't think it was worth the effort; since MS was readily available and much better supported by the community here.

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Ah heck, for the hell of it here is what it cost me just on engine parts. Rounding up. That doesnt even come close to my entire build project.

 

Engine (includings sourcing F54/P90 and rebuilding it the way I wanted) $2800

Triple Weber 45's, Intake manifold, and electronic ignition: $2800

2.5" Coated 3-2 Header $300

4 core radiator $212

Clutch Stage 2: $320

10lb Flywheel: $300

Fuel Pump: $200

 

Thats considering you DIY. I think thats very reasonable. I am still fighting jet sizes and things. Have no idea where my HP is going to be at. I have a very reasonable goal in mind, but I dont dare post what it is based on getting my dreams killed early =)

Edited by AZGhost623
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"Stock Electronics" not handling 200 NA HP?

 

Look at the power levels of some BMW 2.8 Liter Engines, and realize swapping ECU's and AFM's is relatively easy to get a factory optimised curve for almost any 2.8 or 3.0 car (even 3.2) they're all Bosch-Licensed and as long as you know the pinouts and make the appropriate adjustments in wiring, "parts is parts".... This is 70's Tech...

 

I was just referring to the Datsun ECU/AFM =) sorry I wasnt clear enough. Its very clear other cars out there had the ability to do it but they were all very limited and specific without any tuning ability like you can do now by changing maps/curves and things. Thats more of what I was getting at.

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Guess Tony thinks I was wrong about it being a close copy but not exact....Since I have both an original L28 N/A ECU and a BMW 1977-1978 E12 528i ECU here, both of which are Bosch L-jetronic licensed products, I can tell you that the pinouts and the connectors are NOT the same. Some of the sensors are different, and would require a little thinking to get them working. I didn't think it was worth the effort; since MS was readily available and much better supported by the community here.

Read what I effing wrote, and I AM sorry I mentioned it as reading something as clearly stated as

 

" they're all Bosch-Licensed and as long as you know the pinouts and make the appropriate adjustments in wiring, "parts is parts".... This is 70's Tech..."

 

Leads to horse beating.

 

There IS NO BUDGET.

MS was stated as TOO EXPENSIVE.

 

Lets stick with what the OP gave us, and not indulge in idle fantasy and horse beating.

 

Like I said, I'm sorry I mentioned it.

 

It takes something not in the equation: basic knowledge of how an engine functions.

 

Again, I reiterate: "Stick to plug wires and tune up, these skills will apply to everything. You can't fly till you learn to walk, and you can't walk till you learn to crawl. And this situation here is just now getting the attraction to the checkerboard horse on the playmobil just out of reach to coax that first rollover..."

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I am suprised this thread has gone as far as it has. We have seen many threads wanting the big HP# with the magic bullet. To the OP, you need to research for more hours than you can stand and then you will find many have proposed the same quest-with many failures.

Has it been done-yes-but by the very few that have invested many hours and many $$$$

Even my goal of 200HP seems daunting. I have earned a great respect for the real TUNERS on this site that have achieved the bigger numbers. This is not a bolt on deal.

Drive 150+ HP at the rear wheels and see how much fun that is and you might not be searching for so much more.

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Drive 150+ HP at the rear wheels and see how much fun that is and you might not be searching for so much more.

 

Which in all reality is probably about %50 more than you're currently getting to the wheels, which makes a BIG difference. 

 

One of my favorite cars I've ever owned, and would love to own again, was a 155whp CRX that weighed about 2250. Yes it plowed through corners if I came in too hot, yes the crappy ebay coilovers sucked like mad, yes it was a noisy little buzz box of a car. But I could always just get in and drive, and flog the hell out of it and have a blast.

 

There's something to be said for a car that's "balanced" that has just enough power to be fun, enough brakes to be safe, and just the right amount of everything to just "work". In a S30 that should only take 150-200 to the wheels for a street car. More is just excess for the sake of excess. Which is fine, but the higher you get the harder it gets to keep any semblance of balance.

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I'm kinda curious about Tony's suggestion of using a BMW ecu and afm now actually. Mainly because the parts are available to me and I've never heard of this being done before so I am hoping he decides to elaborate a little more on a how to chose and what to expect kinda deal. If you pull an ecu from a BMW 2.8 inline 6 that makes 184hp could you expect to get that same hp from your l series?

Yeah, no. just because the ecu is from a brand new 2.8L and is a straight 6 does not mean its identical to an almost 45 year old engine design. Tony was misunderstood and everyone thought that you could take a BMW ecu and just smack it into the wiring harness until it fit, which he didn't he was simply saying that some factory ecus are better and more optimized (modern ecu's especially) than others.

Read what I effing wrote, and I AM sorry I mentioned it as reading something as clearly stated as

 

" they're all Bosch-Licensed and as long as you know the pinouts and make the appropriate adjustments in wiring, "parts is parts".... This is 70's Tech..."

 

Leads to horse beating.

 

There IS NO BUDGET.

MS was stated as TOO EXPENSIVE.

 

Lets stick with what the OP gave us, and not indulge in idle fantasy and horse beating.

 

Like I said, I'm sorry I mentioned it.

 

It takes something not in the equation: basic knowledge of how an engine functions.

 

Again, I reiterate: "Stick to plug wires and tune up, these skills will apply to everything. You can't fly till you learn to walk, and you can't walk till you learn to crawl. And this situation here is just now getting the attraction to the checkerboard horse on the playmobil just out of reach to coax that first rollover..."

It's ok tony, take a breathe lol

 

But seriously, as tony (and the op for that matter) have stated, Megasquirt is too expensive apparently so there is no pleasing the op's request.

 

That being said, tony is one of the more respected members on this forum so I would take his advice and just stick with the basics. Go through the valvetrain and check everything is in spec, change spark plug wires/plugs/cap/rotor BEFORE you start going for 130+HP. The thing to take away is that if you have a poorly running engine what makes you think it will run any better once you bolt on some metal and throw some cash at it?

 

TL;DR - Budget is everything, start small and just change simple parts to make your engine run better in stock form.

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