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Hello fellow gear heads,

I am a new member from Tallahassee, Florida. First of all, a huge thanks to HP academy for demystifying tuning for noobs like me. Actually, I just completed the 'EFI tuning fundamentals' course and I feel a bit more confident now (atleast theoretically) to start tuning my car. Modding/tuning my car is just my hobby, therefore I have a very specific 'my car' related question for you all.

I own a 2003 mazda 6 3.0L V6, to which I have done a bunch of bolt-on modifications. Here is the list of what's pertinent - Injen CAI, optimized TB, Steeda tb spacer, intake manifold spacers (1/2 in), MSDS high flow headers and magnaflow cat-back. First gen mazda 6 (2003-05) has a Ford ecu and there are not a lot of flash tuning options available for it. Just recently, a flash tuning solution was made available by swapping the ecu with a later generation mazda 6, which is flash-able. Therefore, I am stuck with using a piggy-back ecu (PowerMod) for tuning my car, if I want to keep the original ecu. Also, there is not a huge database of working base maps available as it is for other cars.

Here is my question - as to my understanding, with a piggy back ecu tuner, one alter the outputs of the ecu to suit one's needs. The problem is that I am not really confident in altering something without knowing about it. I have no idea about the output of the ecu. Is there anyway I can obtain those stock maps? I have tried 'googling' them, but with no results. Moreover, if you just use the piggy back tuner and don't care about the output from the ecu, is tuning the car by using a wideband o2, knock sensor and dyno the only best way? I have a wideband o2 installed and I can use the stock knock sensor output, but I don't think I will be accessing the dyno anytime soon. What are my options then?

I will soon be enrolling for 'road tuning' course, but I am too curious to hold all these question to myself now. Thanks in advance for answering these questions.



Hi Nishul, welcome to the forums.

You're more likely to get an answer in the general tuning section for your questions.

I've never used the system that your talking about but from my knowledge of piggy back systems the base map is the original ecu and no alterations to the piggy back unit. Depending on how the piggy back is wired in you'll either be altering the signal the ecu receives from an air flow meter or altering the signals that are going directly to the ignition and injectors. Where you add you are either adding more signal to the ecu from the afm so that the ecu adds more fuel and adjusts timing, or adds fuel/ignition advance or if you put in negative numbers you are lowering the afm signal to the ecu to get it to reduce fuel and adjust ignition or reducing the fuel/ignition directly.

For knock detection do not rely on the OEM knock sensor signals, alway varify your signals with an aftermarket knock monitoring system, either a crushed copper tube with some hose going to a set of ear defenders or invest in a real knock monitoring or audio system.

Thank for your inputs, Chris! Happy new year!

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