Time for a new ECU – reluctantly….

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Well its been a while since anything serious happened to mine, so thought it was about time for some changes….

We were recently given the opportunity to change ECU’s on both Paul’s and my cars… Paul is running an AEM and I was using an Apexi Power FC… I say ‘was’ as in true Whifbitz style I’m the test mule for the latest development….

I was a little apprehensive as I’ve always been happy with the FC and didn’t see the need to change to another ECU, as none really shone in terms of additional benefits for track work…

Until the boys at Solaris-ecs convinced us to give them a try…. so after an installation and initial setup by Ryan G and a run down to the SRR dyno I was up and running with a nice new Solaris ecu.

Initial dyno runs, after a setup session, were looking very good :

573 BHP/500 lb ft

… but the boost was tailing off. It would pull up to 1.4bar but dropped off to 1.1bar by the time the peak HP figure was reached.
So we had to end the day with a decent figure but needed a rerun after the potential turbo/boost problem was fixed.

Back to the workshop for some further checks and investigation… Daz, Paul and myself spent a fair amount of time trying to find the problem. Eventually it was located… due to heat build up around the snail of the intake housing on the turbo from the exhaust manifold (takes a breath!) the silicon hose that joins the snail to the intercooler piping (which was normally covered in a heat shield) had started to bake due to the heat shielding slipping down just enough to let the heat get at it and eventually the pressure from inside found its way out via a 5p sized hole.

After this was replaced by a tailor made and welded pipe, it was back down to SRR for Ryan and Charlie to have another go on the rolling road and we were hoping to see some nice power figures.

Again things were looking good – boost was holding well and just as things were starting to look like a magical power run…. the tyres started slipping on the rollers!
There were other things to be done with the solaris that day, so we called it at the following :

602 BHP/518 lb ft @ ~1.3 bar

Graphs are below, and those that can read them will see the tyres slipping at about 5600-5700.
Theres also a small boost leak as well, which has been identified so that should be fixed for the next visit to SRR.

Ryan then spent some time setting up the traction control so that I had something to play with on the way home.
Fortunately he did as the journey back was dire… Driving mine in M25 gridlock is just insane, but being able to play with the TC in the wet made the journey entertaining… and quite a few people around me liked it as well.

I’ll report more in this soon, as we hope to get back to SRR for a run to see just what we can get from the setup. We will also be putting the new ecu through its paces at a track soon, as were hoping to get Paul’s car up and running with the Solaris as well and get both on track.

It’s worth mentioning that initial impressions of the Solaris are fantastic. This little bit of kit is excellent, as is the time and effort Ryan and Charlie have put in to help us get going with this set-up.
… and as always the sterling efforts from Paul and Daz in getting the car back to full health. It was a long couple of days but worth it

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