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Practical Standalone Tuning: Step 5: Initial Startup

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Step 5: Initial Startup

05.56

00:00 - We're finally now at a point where we can start our engine up for the very first time and there's a few considerations that we want to have in the back of our mind before we get started here.
00:09 First of all, particularly if this is a freshly built engine where we've got no previous knowledge of the history of the engine, we obviously want to be very mindful when we first get the engine up and running to make sure that we've got good oil pressure and that there's no mechanical sounds coming from the engine that could be suggesting that there is a mechanical issue with the engine.
00:29 In our case, we've got an existing running engine that we know is in good condition so nothing there should be a concern for us.
00:35 The other aspects that we want to be mindful of here are looking to check that our manifold pressure or manifold vacuum as it should be at idle, is sufficient, indicating again an engine that is in good health with cam timing that's correct and also making sure that our battery voltage is suitable.
00:54 So with the engine up and running we're expecting to see somewhere in the region of 13.8 to 14.2 volts, suggesting that the alternator is charging correctly.
01:02 Picking up an alternator that isn't charging the battery at this early point in the tuning process can save us a lot of time and hassle.
01:09 Instead of jumping on the dyno and finding out half an hour or an hour into our tuning process that the battery is going dead, affecting our tuning.
01:18 During the startup process, because we have only got broad numbers in our map right now, we may need to make some coarse wholesale changes to the VE values to get the engine running and at the moment we haven't done anything with our idle control so at the moment I'm also expecting to need to keep the engine running manually using my foot on the throttle.
01:40 So what we're going to do before we get started is highlight a block of cells in the region that we're expecting to run, so in this case from 20 kPA up to 100 kPa.
01:49 And we'll go out to 3000 RPM.
01:51 It's not super critical here, what we're doing is highlighting a block of cells so that we can make large changes to those cells quickly.
01:58 Now in terms of the techniques that we have available to us in order to make changes, we can use our plus and minus keys on the keyboard, those will add 1%.
02:07 If we want to make a coarser change, if we hold down the shift key and use the plus and minus key, that'll make 5% changes at a time.
02:15 For finer changes, which we're very unlikely to need right now, using the alt key and plus and minus will make a change of 0.1%.
02:23 So generally to start with we're going to be making relatively coarse changes, either 1% changes or 5% changes in one shot should be sufficient.
02:34 What we're going to be doing here is making use of our air/fuel ratio data.
02:38 Now it's going to take some time after the engine is running for our lambda sensor to come online so we'll be watching for that and generally we're just going to keep the engine running.
02:47 So now we can crank the engine and make sure that we can get it running.
02:54 So straight away the engine starts up relatively easily, I'm just using a small amount of throttle to keep it running.
03:01 And as we can see here, our air/fuel ratio data has come online, we're actually not too bad, we're sitting at about 0.89 lambda so a little bit rich so we can just reduce the numbers in our fuel cells and we can see that we can get down onto our target.
03:16 Now given that the coolant temperature is currently sitting at 43°C we are still in warmup so there's no point chasing an absolutely accurate number here.
03:25 What we want to do is just allow the engine to come up to normal operating temperature before we get too worried here.
03:31 We can see that as that temperature has come up, we've come out of post start enrichment, we now are starting to move a little bit lean so if we can just add a couple of percent back in there and straight away we're back pretty close to our target.
03:43 I'm still using a little bit of throttle just to keep the engine running here but everything's looking pretty good at the moment.
03:49 Now while we have got the engine up and running we also want to take note of our battery voltage, I've added that over here on our log, our graph log and we can see that that's sitting nicely right on our target at around about 14 volts, we can just pause that and have a more detailed view there.
04:04 So we can see sitting pretty much right on 14 volts exactly as we'd expect.
04:08 Likewise we can have a better look at what our fuel pressure is doing.
04:12 You'll note that as we move across into our graph log, this shows us the logged values from that particular point in the log file.
04:20 As we move to the left here and the numbers go back green in our tune display, these are live values.
04:27 So we can see that we are sitting here at about 2.5 to 2.6 bar.
04:30 Remembering that our base fuel pressure typically for this type of engine's going to be three bar but here we are in vacuum here so we would expect that drop down.
04:40 In this case we are sitting at 60 kPa, remembering I've still got a little bit of throttle on board here.
04:46 So that's 40 kPa below atmospheric so we're pretty much right on our target with our base fuel pressure as well, I'll just reduce the throttle a little bit further and we'll see if our vacuum comes down, and it does.
04:58 So the reason that we are interested in our vacuum value here is that if we've got an engine that can't pull a reasonably amount of vacuum at idle, this could be indicative that we have problems with aspects such as our cam timing.
05:12 Now just as I've been talking here we can see that with our temperature coming up, our lambda has moved lean again.
05:19 And you can see straight away I'm not even worried the fact that we are sitting at 1.09 lambda, this is much leaner than we'd want but we are at idle, there is absolutely no danger here of actually doing any damage to the engine.
05:31 So I'll just add a few more percent back into our table there, get off the throttle and we see we've sitting at around about 50 kPa, 55 kPa so we've got good vacuum here.