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Thread: Engine management computer/microprocessor

  1. #1

    Engine management computer/microprocessor

    I am looking into a kit car currently, and want something with substantial horsepower (in the 500 bhp range).

    Finding an engine with that much horsepower isn't all that hard, but selecting the type of induction system is more nettlesome.

    Has anyone here had much experience with engine management computers/chips like the Motec (or other brands)?

    What appeals to me is the promise of an engine that runs smoothly/optimally for long periods of time.

    As a shade tree mechanic with experience with carburated Porsches, old Jaguars, and fuel injection systems that didn't have a computer to manage fuel/air mix I don't really want to go back to that (ever).

    I am planning to build this engine from the block up (or have someone build it for me), and I'm particularly interested in an aluminium (small) block Chevy, with fuel injectors rather than a carburator.

    Anyone here play around with a Motec unit or something similar?



  2. #2

    Re: Engine management computer/microprocessor

    Simple Digital Systems Electronic Fuel Injection

    They'll provide you with complete fuel management. Tell them what you plan, they will tell you what you need. They are also quite cost effective.

  3. #3

    Re: Engine management computer/microprocessor


    onboard computers.... do a google on ITX motherboards

  4. #4
    Senior Member RCR's Avatar
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    Jan 2002
    Shelby Twp Mi

    Re: Engine management computer/microprocessor

    I've used the older tech Accel DFI 6. It was pretty easy to use and tuning was as easy as plugging in the laptop. The newer DFI is much more advanced.

    Bob custom '84 Fiero SE --->>> custom F408

  5. #5

    Re: Engine management computer/microprocessor

    I've used Accel DFI Gen 6 and Gen 7, Simple Digital Systems EM-4, Holley Commander 950, and I've been editing GM ECMs for several years. They all do the same basic stuff, fuel and ignition timing control, and all do it pretty much equally. There a some minor differences in the available outputs, things like the type of idle speed control, type of ignition system, cooling fan control, nitrous and boost control,... etc.. The major difference between all of them is the user interface, and the difference can be like night and day. There are several different software apps available to tune many of the GM ECMs, and this is probably the most inexpensive route. You will need some special equipment to progam them, either on the bench or in the car, and you will need to learn how to use it. Accel Gen 6 is based on a GM TPI ECM, but has on-the-fly tuning capabilities and a DOS based interface built in. It's features are somewhat limited. Accel Gen 7 and Holley 950 are extremely capable and adaptable to just about any application. They both come with user friendly Windows software. The SDS has the absolute worst user interface/programmer, and no control for stepper motor IAC. The only thing it has going for it isthat it does come with everything you need to tune it, it is the only one I know of that doesn't require a laptop or PC. Of all the above, Accel DFI 7 is clearly at the top of my list.

    Just because you've got the best equipment doesn't mean it's automaticly going to work well. It takes a lot of time to tune a custom engine with any of these systems. In most cases you can load a starting point that will get the car to start and run. The best thing to do is spend some money on dyno time and the help of an experienced EFI tuner. It will be money well spent. Some systems have a linear wideband O2 sensor option, it will cost about $400-1000 more, but having just purchased on myself I can tell you it is also worth the cost if you are serious about performance.

    Good luck.

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