112 | Dyno Operation (Intermediate) - Mainline AWD1200
In this webinar we will discuss how to set up the Mainline DynoLog software for a new vehicle prior to performing testing. We will look at the correct techniques to setup the dyno and some tricks and tips that will save you time, help ensure consistency from session to session, and even protect your engine too.
- It's Andre from the High Performance Academy. Thanks for joining us for this webinar. We are going to be having a look in depth at the operation of the Mainline chassis dyno. We've had a Mainline chassis dyno as well as a Mainline engine dyno here at High Performance Academy for a little over a year now, and over that time we've got a really good chance to get to know the dyno, find out the tips and tricks to get the most out of it. We've also been fortunate enough to have a really good relationship with both Todd and Craig from Mainline.
And this is gonna give us the opportunity to see some of the more advanced features of the dyno and how you can use the dyno to get the best results from your tuning exercise. Now, this particular webinar already builds on from our existing webinar on Mainline chassis dyno configuration setup, and this is more about, that webinar was more about getting the car physically set up on the Dyno. So if you haven't seen that already, please make sure that you view that in the archive that will give you a more rounded view on aspects such as strapping technique, which can make such a big difference on a rolling road style of chassis dyno. We will also be presenting a more advanced course, a more advanced webinar again in the future, on the Mainline chassis dyno, so please, if you're watching this one in the webinar archive, make sure you search for that as well if it's out at that time, that'll give you a complete rounded view on how to get the most out of the Mainline chassis dyno. So what we're talking about here, or the aim of this particular webinar is twofold.
I'm going to aim to give you some advice on how to set up your dyno, or configure your dyno, so that you can get consistency when you're tuning the same car that is coming back to your workshop numerous times. This is a really common scenario for any professional workshop, where you'll go and tune a car, perhaps the customer takes the car away, goes and races it or, the more common situation will be where the customer goes and makes a further hardware modifications to the engine. Brings it back, perhaps a few weeks or maybe even a few months later, and then you run it up on the dyno again. Now particularly if you're a busy workshop, and you're tuning a lot of cars, it can be very difficult to remember every single aspect of that particular run when you last saw the car. And obviously no customer wants to go and spend money on hard parts modifications to their vehicle, bring it back and find that they've lost power, potentially due to a configuration or run setup variation from the last time you had the car on the dyno.
So we're going to aim to cover that. We're also going to have a look at some of the more slightly advanced aspects of the Mainline dyno in terms of how you can set up your runs, how you can configure your runs, how you can view the information on the dyno, that you need to see at any particular moment, and then we'll also look at how you can analyze the runs once we've completed some ramp run tuning, and look at some tricks and tips that we can use to actually help speed up in particular our fuel tuning. So we're going to start though by looking at the setup on the dyno, so this is how we actually configure the car or setup the car on the dyno. So let's jump across to our dyno software for a start, and this is our main screen that we're going to be using while we're performing any steady state tuning. What we're going to do is jump into our setup drop down menu, and there are a variety of ways that we can achieve most of the results that we're going to be interested in on the Mainline dyno.
What I'm going to show you for the most part throughout today's webinar, are the techniques that I've personally taken on and used. These may not necessarily be the way that you prefer to use them. But understand the fundamentals here, understand the concepts that I'm going to be looking at, and then you can choose how to apply them to your own tuning task. Right, we're gonna click on Setup Wizard. Now this gives us a really easy way of either setting the dyno up for a brand new car that we've never seen before, or if we've got a car that's come back that we've previously tuned, this is a really quick and easy way of selecting the run folder that we want to access for that particular vehicle.
I say run folder, but in Mainline speak what we're actually talking about here is a header. So you can see right at the top we have Edit New Header, or we can have Select Old Header. So in this case I'm going to go through the process of selecting an old header for our Nissan 350Z. If you are setting up for a new car, don't worry though, I'm going to cover all of the aspects as if we were starting from scratch. So we can just left click on Select Old Header.
Now we can go into the dynolog folder structure, and there's a few different ways that we can deal with this. By default, Mainline dynolog, the folder structure, as you can see, is separated out into two different makes of car. Now, this is, there's nothing wrong with this particular technique. I come from a background where I ran and owned a Dynapack dyno for a number of years, and my own personal preference for the folder layout was that I used the registration number from the vehicle, so the license plate number from the vehicle, as the folder identifier. As I say, this is another area where there's no right or wrong way, and it really comes down to personal preference.
So what I've done here is I've kind of adopted a hybrid strategy. So what I've done, is we'll go into Nissan, and by default the Mainline dynolog structure separates Nissan into four cylinder and six cylinder. I'm not actually using that structure, what you can see here is I've added my own folder which is HPA-350Z. So in this case this would be normally what I'd use as the registration of the vehicle. This makes it really nice and easy.
Now if we had selected Create a New Header, we'd have the option here of adding a new folder, and we can simply then add the registration number. Now, with the structure that I used on my Dynapack, what I would do is use the registration number of the vehicle, then I would add a hyphen and I'd just add a short detail about the type of vehicle. So for our 350Z, let's say that was the numberplate, HPA-350Z, I would've put HPA-350Z-Nissan350ZNA, or something of that nature, just so at a glance I could easily distinguish what that vehicle was. This becomes much more important when you've got potentially hundreds of files that you're searching through. With the Mainline dynolog software we have a character limit, so this is why I've developed this hybrid.
Again, how you choose to do this is totally up to you. So we can click there on HPA-350Z. This is where we've got all of our runs stored, and we can see down here on the left hand side, we've got a what should by now be a relatively large range of runs from this vehicle. And what I'll do is just select this particular run here, 13.0, in fact we've already got it loaded up. Now, actually, what I'm gonna do, I will jump out of this and I will select Edit New Header, this is just gonna be an easier way to show you some things, I've just realized, I'm not gonna be able to show you.
So this is where we're starting from scratch here. And we've got a few pages where we can fill out information relevant to our particular vehicle that we're tuning. We start by default here on our test page, and this is where we can enter a test ID, so this is the identifier for a particular run. The important part here is, we need to set the path for our data files and this is where our data is going to be stored, this is what we were just looking at. You can see that our data path is already shown here, dynolog\Nissan\HPA350Z.
I can click on this, this is where we could add a new folder if we wanted to start from scratch. Okay, so we've got our data path at this point stored. This point we're not actually trying to save any runs, we haven't performed any runs so we don't need to worry about anything else on this particular page. If you've got multiple dyno operators you can enter the operator that's going to be doing this particular tune. Next we can move across to our vehicle page.
Now, there's a huge potential for the information that we can enter here. We start with a description, and in all honesty, this is probably the only information most people are going to enter. I've been in a position where I've run a busy workshop, and while it would be nice to have every single piece of data about each car that we're tuning listed, sometimes we are either aren't privy to that information, we just simply can't get it, or we don't have time to do justice to it. Of course, really, this comes down to how thorough you want to be. If you've got the information and the time available, it's going to give you a more thorough description of the vehicle if it comes back at a later point.
It will also make it very easy for you to compare between similar vehicles with different modifications. One aspect that we do need to enter in this particular page however, is a rego. So we need to have the rego entered. This is about the only important detail that we must have. It's also worthwhile if we want to make a point here of noting what gear we're going to run the car in, again this could be something we can reference later.
We can move over and we can add some information about our customer. Again, this is really up to you as to what information you want to add in here. None of it's 100% critical. Really comes down to whether you're going to be using this to store your customer information or whether you've got customer management software package where you've got all your customer data stored. So we can move across and we have gearing.
Again, this is really up to you, it's not a page that I generally will enter information on. But of course if you want to and you have the gearing information for the vehicle, feel free. Once we've done this we can click on Save, and this will save the run information or the header information and now we're ready to actually begin our testing. There's a few other steps here that we can go through, and I'm going to just cover off one of them here, which is our derived RPM. Now, with a rolling road dyno the actual dyno control is all based on the roller speed, which obviously equates to our road speed, so most of you will have seen a rolling road dyno print-outs which simply show mile an hour or kilometers an hour as our X axis.
And for me, personally, I hate that. It's not particularly useful when I want to tune a site in my fuel table that's rich or lean. Or perhaps I've got too much ignition timing on one particular point and the engine was suffering from knock, I really wanna relate that back to an engine RPM, so I can go into my ECU, and I can make adjustments to the relevant point in the table. So, we really want to be able to display RPM on our X axis. And this comes from our derived RPM, and there's a few ways we can get this information.
We can take it directly from a tacho input, where we're going to actually connect the dyno to an ignition source on the engine itself, and that's going to give a direct input to engine RPM, or we can also derive it from the relationship between engine RPM and road speed. That's what we're looking at here. We're gonna come back to this very shortly, and I'm just going to close this down and we'll get the engine running, so we can see how that's going to be performed. Just close our window so it's a little bit quieter in the cabin. And so what I'm going to do here is I'm just going to get our car running in fourth gear.
And I'm going to bring my road speed up to approximately 3000. And the reason I'm going to bring this up to 3000 is I want to be able to apply a reasonable amount of torque from the engine through to the rear wheels. And what we're going to do here is we're going to get up to 3000 RPM, and then we're going to set the relationship between our roller speed and our engine speed, so setting in essence here, our derived RPM. So we'll have that input for the X axis on our dyno graphs. Now, with a rolling road dyno we're always going to have some amount of tire deformation, and this becomes more pronounced when we're producing a lot of torque and a lot of power.
So what we want to do is set the derived RPM under realistic conditions where the engine is producing a reasonable amount of torque and power. If we do this at very low RPM and very low throttle input, we're going to have very little torque being transferred to the rear wheels. This is going to result in little to no deformation of the tire, and what we're going to find is that when we perform a ramp run, the tire does deform, the car moves forward, and the tire does come up onto the front roller. We're going to end up with inaccuracies creeping in between our actual engine speed and our derived engine speed. So we're going to bring our engine speed up to 3000 here, and I'm just using the dyno to allow me to control the road speed.
So once I'm getting up to about 3000 RPM, I'm going to apply some more throttle, so at the moment I'm just sitting at very very low throttle setting, and on the right hand side of our dyno screen, we can see our engine RPM. Now this is the actual engine RPM coming from the Link G4+ ECU via CAN, so this is accurate. So we can see that at the moment we're sitting at 2880 RPM, and our roller speed is fixed at 75 kilometers an hour. Watch what happens to our engine RPM, as I go to full throttle. So you can see that when I go to full throttle there, we've increased about 120 RPM.
This is the effect that we want to minimize. So while I'm still at full throttle I'm gonna come across and I'm gonna go to Setup, and I'm gonna go to engine and vehicle, and then I'm going to go to engine RPM to Road Speed. So this brings up our derived calculation here. You can see that we're seeing our real tacho speed coming through here. We can see that calibrated RPM, which should be the same as this, and then we can click Set Derived RPM, and this will set up here our derived RPM, which in this case for fourth gear, is 25 kilometers per hour, per thousand RPM.
So it's really important when we go through setting up that derived RPM to make sure that we do it under realistic conditions. We want to make sure we're doing it with that tyre being deformed under a reasonable amount of load, otherwise we're just simply going to get unrealistic values for our derived RPM, and we're going to wondering why we're chasing our tails when it comes to looking at where a certain change has occurred in our run, and why we can't get that same point in our ECU to align. Okay, so we're going to click OK there, and what we're going to do is also just talk, while I'm talking about derived RPM and our tyre deformation, this really relates back to our previous webinar on the Mainline dyno setup, and this goes for any rolling road dyno. It's essential if we want to get consistent results to make sure that we always use a consistent tyre pressure, so this should be one of our very first setups, when we're putting a car on the dyno, is setting our tyre pressure so that they're constant. Now, what this means is that the tyre pressures will affect our tyre deformation, so if we test the car with perhaps 25 PSI of pressure on the tyres, and then we test the car with 40 PSI of pressure on the tyres, this will affect the results that we're going to read on the dyno, so this is one area that we can really help improve our consistency from run to run.
The other aspect that goes along with that as well, is the actual type of tyre fitted to the vehicle. Now this is a trap or a problem I've struck myself, where we've done a lot of tuning on a vehicle, and then we've sent it out, it's come back with a new set of tyres, perhaps a different brand or size of tyre, and we find that that actually has an affect on the power that the dyno's reading. A real good case in point for that was out Toyota 86, when we first moved to Queenstown and got our Mainline dyno, we had a set of NITTO NTO5 road tyres on the car. So we're done a lot of tuning with those tyres on the car, and then once those were worn out, because the car was really only being used on the race track, we switched over to the NITTO NTO1, which is a purpose built semi-slick design for competition. It's a much stickier compound, and what we straightaway found was with no other changes, that the car actually produced somewhere around about 10 to 15 kilowatts less power.
So if you haven't taken note of that sort of change, this can really throw you, this can affect the power and you may not really understand why in that respect as well, when we are setting up our header information, there is an area where we can also enter our tyre information under the vehicle page. So this is actually quite a good idea to take note of the tyres fitted to the vehicle as well as the size of the tyres fitted to the vehicle. But this again will give you a reference point later on if the car comes back on a different size or a different brand of tyre. Okay, so, we've got our basic setup done now. We've got a header loaded up, we've got a header configured, we know that our data is going to go into the correct data path, or data folder, so we're going to be able to find it later.
It's really easy to overlook that step, and if you overlook that step you're going to end up misplacing your data, it's going to go into another vehicle's run folder, this can be very confusing later on, particularly if you've got a lot of vehicle folders or headers on your dyno, it can be almost impossible to find where exactly that information went. So it's important to make sure that we do cover that correctly. Okay, one aspect I'm just going to touch on now, which is a really nice feature of the Mainline dyno, is that we have the ability to set up a range of alarms. So again, if we jump across to the dyno software and we click on the alarms drop down menu, and we click on Define Alarms, this will bring up a box where we can configure and add different alarms. That's really easy if you're just concentrating on the job at hand, tuning the engine, and perhaps you are tuning in steady state, particularly once you get under high load and high RPM, at your steady state tuning your fuel and ignition, can be quite easy to be so focused on the task that you don't happen to notice your engine coolant temperature starting to creep up.
So, an alarm that I've added in here is a water temp alarm. So what's going to happen here, is this alarm definition - -first of all our channel is enabled - and this is a high alarm, so in this case if our water temperature value goes above 100 degrees Centigrade, this is going to trigger the alarm. There's a range of aspects we can control with this alarm as to what the dyno is going to do. In this case what I've got is it will show this alarm on the main screen, so it'll pop out with an alarm warning on the main screen, that's visible and really clear. Now because you're going to be concentrating on the dyno screen while you're tuning, particularly let's say steady state tuning of ignition timing, we're looking constantly at the dyno screen for the torque output, this is straightaway going to bring your attention to the screen and you're going to notice that something's wrong.
Now obviously I've only got one alarm in there, and there is an alarm defined by default for retarder temperature, so this is really a safety aspect for the dyno itself, and obviously a good one to have in there. The sort of alarms that we can define in here are really up to your own imagination. We could define alarms for intake air temperature, we can also define alarms if you'd like for what lambda, oil pressure, fuel pressure, et cetera. You do have to be a little bit sensible with the alarms you're setting up though, and for example if you set a low oil pressure warning, that is going to be useful, so let's say at 5000 RPM, if we see our oil pressure drop below 40 PSI, we may want that warning to come on. This isn't going to be particularly useful because any time the engines are idle or very low RPM, chances are our oil pressure will be below that value and hence we're going to end up with the warning constantly on when we don't want it.
So you do need to be a little bit sensible about how you use those alarms. Now, this all works also, in conjunction here, with the CAN communication setup, with the Mainline dyno. And this is one of the key reasons that we purchased the Mainline dyno, this really sold us on the dyno. At the time we purchased the Mainline dyno, this was, to the best of my knowledge, the only dyno that offered such advanced CAN integration. This is starting to trickle down into other brands of dyno, but again, with the Mainline dyno, they were the first to market as far as I'm aware, and it does give a huge amount of control.
One of the real big advantages here is if you have the CAN support, this obviously is an added feature that you do need to pay for and purchase from Mainline, but if you have the CAN support, what it means is that if you have an instrumented car, like our 350Z for example where we have oil pressure, fuel pressure, and onboard lambda, we don't need to add additional sensors into the dyno. Instead, what we can do is send all of the ECU sensor information across to the dyno via CAN. This allows us to view that same sensor information on the dyno, it allows us to use that information for the likes of those alarms that we just saw, and it also means that we can do some advanced logging and analysis of those ECU parameters and channels as well. So it's a really really powerful feature, and one that really expands the usefulness of the dyno. Now, we'll just go through very briefly the setup here to get the CAN data on our dyno.
So let's have a look here at our external devices and we'll click on Setup Data Devices. And what we'll get here is our CAN setup. Now, we've got here our ECU input, which is enabled, this is our little tick box here, and you can see that the data device selected is our Link Fury CAN Generic one. So what we could do here if we look at our drop down list, this is a list of all of the CAN-based data devices, ECU's and loggers, et cetera, that the Mainline dyno is compatible with, a huge array there. I'll just go back down and choose our Link CAN Generic one again.
So, we can also control the CAN bus rate as well, so the transmission rate, in this case the bus speed is selected as 1000 kilobits, or one megabit per second, and this is all going to be related to whatever ECU we're reading from. As well as the actual ECU data, we can also bring in a range of additional information via CAN. So you can see here, I've got an input set up as a user input which is AFR from a Motec Lambda to CAN network, and we've also got some information potentially we can bring in from our Knock Monitor. Not going to get too involved with this CAN setup right here, we will cover this in a little bit more detail in an upcoming advanced webinar on the Mainline dyno. So we'll close that down because we have now got that data coming through, and once that closes down, what we'll see, I'll just start our car again.
This time we'll have a look at the right hand screen of our Mainline dyno, and we can see that we've got a range of data being displayed here. I've got some of the items doubled up because I change this quite frequently depending on the ECU that we're using, so in particular here we've got our engine RPM, this is coming in via CAN, we've got our inlet air temperature, and we also have lambda one, lambda two at the moment isn't configured. We have our battery voltage, fuel pressure, and we have our ignition timing, injector duty cycle, essentially any of the channels that are configured and coming in via CAN can be viewed on this right hand screen here, and these can be used while we're tuning in steady state, we can also use them as we just looked at to set up a warning alarm, if you desire. Okay, so now that we've got our data coming in via CAN, we're going to have a look at how we can configure some of those channels to show us the data we want. And this is one of the areas where the Mainline dyno, it does take a little bit of time to get your head around, it is quite an advanced software package, and in a lot of ways, possibly lacks in the user friendliness department in some ways.
There's a huge amount of complexity here which is obviously difficult to demonstrate and allow the end user to access in a really easy way. What we're going to do is click on Channel Properties. There's a few ways we can get to our channel properties. What I did just there was I right-clicked, basically, any of these parameters, I'll just show you, any of these parameters here that we're displaying, we can control, and on any of these parameters that we are displaying you'll find this little Channel properties box, and this takes us to this screen here, which displays all of the channels currently being input to the Mainline dyno. And there's a range of different ways the dyno can get its data.
And we can see, let's just move through here, we have some data that is logged, so this is something like our barometric pressure, and our relative humidity. These have the little symbol L to the left of them. We'll move down and we will see that we have, this one here has the symbol M beside it, which is a maths channel, so this is calculated by the ECU, and then we also have these channels which are listed with an E beside them. So E means they are coming in from the ECU, so these are the channels that we have coming to us via CAN, and what I wanted to do is just have a look at how we can manipulate some of this data. And a real common one that we may want to change here is our lambda reading, so I've just gone down to lambda one, which is coming in from ECU.
And on the right hand side we can see that the lambda channel is configured in units of lambda. So if we click on our drop down menu, if you've got a preference of reading this data in units of air-fuel ratio, we can simply choose air-fuel ratio here, you can also choose equivalence ratio or fuel to air ratio, so a huge amount of flexibility and how exactly you want to display that. And if you want to be technically accurate with the air fuel ratio display, you can also choose the fuel below that that you're running on, so petrol, methanol, LPG, et cetera, and that will affect the stoichiometric air fuel ratio setting for that particular parameter. At the same time, while the engine is running, while we have live data coming in, we can see that data being displayed in real time here. So this just allows us to have a real time check and make sure that the data is working, that we have got data being displayed on that particular channel that we're trying to change.
We also have the ability to smooth the data. So this is a little bit of a catch-22. Where we're going to be capturing and viewing this data, and often a lot of the channels that we're viewing will be quite noisy, so we can choose to apply some smoothing to the channels. You can see at the moment I've got no smoothing being applied, we can choose to smooth in the data live, we can also choose to smooth the graphed results of any of our data, we'll have a look at this in a little bit more detail shortly. Essentially we have the ability to choose no smoothing, which we've got, light, medium, and heavy.
A thing with any smoothing or filtering that we need to understand is that when we apply some smoothing or filtering to the channel we are going to lose some of the detail on that particular channel. Th other thing that's important to understand here is we have a heading text. Now be default any of the channels that are coming in via the ECU, via CAN, will have the little letter E beside them just to let you know that they are coming in from the ECU. So for example, I'll quite often go and call this AFR1, or lambda one, just so it's a little bit clearer for me. Alright, so we've had a look at how we can set up any of the channels, so the same would go if you wanted to change any of the units, perhaps fuel pressure from KPA to PSI, boost from KPA to PSI, that's the same process we're going to go through which is to use the properties menu.
Okay, so we've looked at our CAN setup, we'll just go back to the right hand screen on our dyno now, and once we've got all of that information coming in via CAN, we can choose what information to display here on any of these boxes. So let's for example, go to our top left box. Currently that's configured as lambda LTC one, we don't have any data from that because it's not currently set up, so we can click on that, and we can go through any of the channels here. You can see again, we have our log channels coming straight from our dyno, so these include for example, if you had the dyno built in map sensor reading boost pressure, this would come from the L channel Map one or Map two. Let's move down and we'll choose another one of our ECU channels.
So for example here, we could have our ECU channel for speed in kilometers per hour. So obviously we're not moving right now. That'll give us our ECU speed channel, it's gonna be used for configuring the speedo accuracy for example, comparing that channel to our dyno roller speed. So now we've looked at our steady state set up, we've got some data coming in there, we've got it set up talking to the ECU. What we're going to do is we're going to press F2, we're going to move across to our ramp run screen.
So this is the screen which we're going to be viewing in real time when we're performing ramp runs. The last screen we looked at is what we're going to be using when we're performing steady state tuning. So there's a few ways we can set up the data on the screen, and we'll have a look at the setup of the data first and foremost. Once we've done that we'll move on and we'll have a look at how we can actually set up a run configuration. So at the moment you can see we've got two pieces of data being displayed, we've got our power in kilowatts at the bottom, and we've got our air fuel ratio at the top.
On the top of the screen, live, you can also see we have a range of inputs, and again, for most of these we can see we have the little letter E showing us that we have this data coming in from the ECU. Now this is an important aspect to touch on here. The data that we looked at on the right hand screen of the dyno, we've got a huge number of boxes set up and we can display just about any parameter that we care to, that data's useful when we're steady state tuning, however, during a ramp run, what we're going to find is that the update rate of the data on the second screen is too slow to be useful. The update rate's something like two times a second, so this is far too slow to be watching in real time. The data, however, at the top of our ramp run screen, this is being updated much faster, so this gives us access to a fairly wide range of data that we can view.
Now, it's important to point out here that there is also a limit to how much data we can process during a ramp run. During a ramp run, there's a lot going on, and the ramp run's relatively fast, so really there is a limited amount that we can take in. We can only really view one, or perhaps two parameters at a time, so if you think you're going to be able to constantly scan between two lambda inputs, the engine RPM, perhaps boost pressure, perhaps manifold back pressure, exhaust manifold back pressure, and exhaust gas temperatures, fuel pressure, it's just simply not possible. So what we want to do is really view the data that we are most interested in, and our graphs here. So if we right click, this gives us the ability to set up the channels that we're interested in viewing.
First of all, we have the little boxes that we had across the top here, and let's just have a look at setting up some of these parameters, just so you can see, we can scroll through. Again, we're able to display anything, either a log channel straight into the dyno, or an ECU channel via CAN. What we're going to do here is just add in a manifold absolute pressure. What I can do is just left click, hold it down, and drag it to where I want to display that parameter. You can see that our manifold absolute pressure has now popped up there.
We've got our air fuel ratio as well. Let's move throttle position up here. Throttle position, no, that's not. Our throttle position. It doesn't wanna show me my throttle position.
That's fine, we can drag and drop those items, typically, and that will show us whatever parameter that we are moving into that location, except for throttle position as it turns out. Not quite sure why that's not playing the game for me at the moment. Okay, so if we move down from the top bar, that's being displayed during our ramp runs, we can set up what's being displayed on our graphs. We have the ability to display up to three graphs, and really, what we're going to display here is dependent on the type of engine that we're tuning. For a naturally aspirated engine my general configuration there is the one that you saw already.
We're looking at our air fuel ratio data, our lambda data, and we're looking at our power. For a turbocharged engine, I would generally set up three graphs, and I would add manifold pressure in as well. So we can see we can configure these. At the moment, the little icon here shows that we're looking at our top trace. We can see that the channel selected for our top trace is E, lambda one, remember that's coming from our ECU.
And we do need to be a little bit careful here, because we need to make sure we're configured in the right channel. Let's click on properties and we'll have a look at that. I'll just go through to the same channel. Okay, remember that we've set this already to units of air fuel ratio. Now the reason that's important is because that works in conjunction with our graph scaling.
So this is the minimum and maximum values that will be displayed, so in this case, our minimum value will be 11 to one and our maximum value is 15 to one. Obviously that's going to work quite nicely with our air fuel ratio values, but of course if we had this configured in units of lambda we'd be seeing no data, so it's a really easy trap to fall into if you're not seeing any data and you don't know why, you could be using the wrong units. The other aspect here is we can set some limit lines. Now this is a really nice way of being able to get a quick visual indication, whether our tune is safe and on target, so for example, with a turbocharged, sorry, that should aspirated engine like this, I might be wanting to see my air fuel ratio somewhere between perhaps 12.5 and 13.5 to one. Now when I click OK, we can see that this is going to show this range, so it means that at a real quick glance we can straight away see if our air fuel ratio is within our range.
We don't need to be paying as much attention to the specific value, so it makes it really quick and easy to see at a glance. Let's just go back, and if we, if we're running a turbocharged engine we could add a center trace, we'd do that by clicking on the center trace, and this is going to then give us the set up information for that particular channel, in this case just to demonstrate it we can bring in our manifold absolute pressure from our ECU, or alternatively, we could scroll back up and we could bring in our logged channel of manifold absolute pressure one, which is coming in from our dyno directly. So then we can do exactly the same, we can set up a graphscale minimum and maximum values, and we can add a limit line here. So this again, with a turbocharged engine, it's a really nice way of being able to instantly see at a glance if our boost pressure is on target, or if we've exceeded the area, the boost pressure that we're comfortable running. Now this is something that I actually really like about the Mainline dyno, the way the software works, because what's going to happen is that we get to view this data happening live and real time, during the ramp run.
So coming from my Dynapack background, we're forced to watch the values numerically, we can set up some graphs with the Dynapack dyno, but myself and most of the Dynapack users that I've talked to regularly, generally focus on the numerical data, and while this obviously does tell us what's going on, sometimes it's much easier to watch the graph progressing during our run, and if we've got those margins set up, our reference lines set up, we can straight away see if our air fuel ratio is on target, we can see if our boost is on target, and straight away this allows us to back out of the run if we're not happy with the run and how it's progressing. Alright, so we're going to also have a quick look here at the setup for our actual run. We can do that by clicking on Setup, and this will give us the ability to define the start and finish RPM for our ramp run, as well as our ramp rate which we can see here. So for this particular ramp run, we're going to be starting at 45 kilometers an hour, and we're going to be finishing the ramp run when we get to 155 kilometers an hour, and that ramp run will progress at 10 kilometers per hour per second. Now, here comes one of the other advantages with setting up our derived RPM earlier in the piece that we looked at.
What we can see is when we have our derived RPM setup, remember, that was 25 kilometers per hour per second, well we've done that, we see these blue values appear, so for example our ramp run will start at 1800 RPM, and it will finish at 6200 RPM, and it will progress at 400 RPM per second. So these are the aspects that I'm more interested in as a tuner, I don't really care specifically about the road speed, but remember the road speed is how the dyno actually performs its control functions. So again, this is why we really want our derived RPM. What we can also set up here, aside from our derived RPM, is a maximum engine speed that the dyno will not go past during a ramp run. So this can help protect our engine.
In this case we've got our engine RPM channel is coming in from our linking sue via CAN, and I've set that to 6800 RPM, so under no circumstances will the dyno attempt to allow the engine RPM to exceed 6800 RPM. Okay, so once we're happy with our run configuration, we can progress and we can actually perform a ramp run. Not going to do a ramp run right here now, we don't need to, we're going to move forward and have a look at the analysis aspect of the dyno. One thing that is quite powerful here with our Mainline dyno, is that during our ramp run we have the ability to show the last run. Now I haven't actually done a run here, so we have no data loaded up, but if we've done a run, we can either load in our last run or our reference run.
So the way we can use this, is our reference run, that could be the run that loaded up from the last time the car was on the dyno. So that loads up in the background as you can see there on the dyno, the white line, and when we perform our next ramp run our live data is going to overlay directly on the top of that, so straight away, while we're performing in the run, we're straight away know if we're on target, if we're ahead of our last run, or perhaps we're much worse off. So this can give us an indication of where we're going, and in some cases it may be enough to make us decide to abort the run. The really good example of this is where we're tuning a very high-powered drag engine which is under a huge amount of stress, so for example high-boost drag engines, running, perhaps, 50 to 70 PSI boost pressure. We don't really want to apply any more load and stress to that sort of engine than we absolutely need to, so if we perform a run, we've made some changes, and perhaps we see that the power isn't heading in the direction we want to go, because, in real time we see that our power is below our last run, we can straight away abort that run, we don't need to run the engine all the way through to the rev limit or to the end of our run, in order to see what the results were.
So that's a really nice feature when we're using that show reference run or show last run. When we're performing the tuning process, and we're making iterative changes, we're going to be using the show last run, and it'll show us that difference from the changes that we've just made between the last run and our current run. Okay, so once we've got a range of runs completed, then we can start using the dyno to help us analyze that data and see what those changes mean. So we can get to that by clicking on the Analyze button here, alternatively pressing F2. It's going to take us through to this screen here where we wanna be watching or viewing both of our screens.
So, we've got a range of data and we've got three runs loaded up to view. So we can see at the top, on the left hand screen, we have our power and torque. Below this we have our lambda one, and we've also got a channel here which we'll talk about shortly, which is a target fuel correction calculation that the dyno's made. For all of our runs here, we have the channel data from every single channel being displayed at the current cursor location, so we can scroll through and have a look at any of the data that was collected at that particular point. Now this was another area where having the CAN communication is useful.
We may not strictly need to view a particular channel at the time we're tuning, but all of this data is stored, so if in months later we get the car back and we're trying to find why we've gained or lost some power, we really need to analyze some particular focused aspect, all of that data is captured for us to view. On the right hand side we have our ignition timing, and also we have our cam timing being shown. Now, we're going to just have a look for a start at how we can choose the runs that we're viewing here, so if we go to our file drop down menu, and we go to Select Ramp Runs, or Step Runs, this is going to allow us to choose any of the run files that we have stored. So on the right hand side, we can see the current number of runs we have selected. We can display up to six simultaneously for analysis purposes.
We have three runs selected. These are just labeled in air fuel ratio terms because they've come from the last public webinar that I performed. Let's just click on here. Baseline test run, and that will, oh, no, we don't want to select that one. We will select another 12.5 to one run, and that will then bring that run up.
Now we've got four runs that we'll be able to display, one on top of the other. Yeah, baseline test was already selected, so now we'll go back and show how we can de-select a run, so in this case, what I'm going to do is de-select our baseline test run, we can click on that and we can click on Unselect Run, and that will remove it from the file, or remove our 12.5 to one, so we've got 13, 12.5, I want 13.5 as well. So we've got three runs that we can compare. Okay. So now we've got our three runs selected.
What we're going to do is look at our RPM input here as well, so remember, all of the dyno data is based off our road speed, and the controller is based off the road speed, however we want to be able to view RPM. And we've got a few different options here. You can see on the bottom axis we have E RPM, and this will show us our RPM at each of the break points on our power graph. If we go into Show, this is where we can control a huge number, a huge amount of the information we are displaying, and if we move down to near the bottom we can see we have Show Derived RPM, we have Show Tacho RPM, or we have Show ECU RPM. So our option here is going to depend on our RPM source.
And in this case we have the RPM coming from the ECU via CAN, we know this is going to be accurate, so this is the axis I'm going to set up and select. If we didn't have our CAN data coming through and we had no tacho module, we could choose Show Derived RPM and that's gonna show the derived RPM based on that calculation, of 25 kilometers per hour per thousand RPM. We'll just move back to our ECU for that channel. Now, on our top graph here, we've got our torque and our power. What I'm going to do is actually remove torque from this equation.
We can, by clicking on the Show drop down menu, we can display torque, we can display power, we can display motive force, and we can also use our derived torque value instead of the torque from the rear roller. So. While, obviously, torque and power is a conventional way of viewing our tune data and deciding on the results of our tuning exercise, of course power is calculated from torque and engine RPM, so it's easiest I find to view just our power value. So obviously any time that our torque is increased, we're subsequently going to see an increase in power anyway, so I've tended to move towards just displaying one aspect, which is power. That's again, personal preference, you could decide to simply do all of your tuning showing the torque screen, or of course you can show both together.
If we move down we have our lambda values, so again, these are coming via our ECU CAN data. With any of the graphs that we've got displayed here we can adjust or control what's being displayed on them by right clicking. And we already have a number of channels selected for this particular graph. We have lambda from our LTC, we have lambda two, we have Map one, or we have our lambda one. If you wanted to choose any channels that aren't there, you can click on Select Channels, and then, you can adjust the channels that are available for that particular item or that particular graph.
So for example, if we wanted to display fuel pressure, we could double click on fuel pressure, that now moves across to our selected channels folder. If we click on OK, we can now monitor our fuel pressure and we can't see any data because at the moment the data is off the scale. This brings me to the next point is adjusting the axes scaling. So if we click, right-click again, and we click on Y axis scales, we can adjust the scaling. So in this case, let's just take our maximum value up to 500 KPA, and we can see our fuel pressure during that run.
And interestingly enough, we can actually see that the fuel pressure is dropping slightly. We had 450 KPA at the start of the run, and at the end of the run we're seeing somewhere around about 440 KPA, probably pretty typical and not something I'm concerned about, but you can see how powerful having all of these channels available is for our data analysis. Okay... One other aspect that I'll just talk about here is this little data flybox that we can see being displayed here. Now all of the data is being displayed at the cursor point on the right hand side, but of course that's every channel.
So this data flybox here shows us just the data from the current graph, and it we have got multiple graphs being displayed at any particular time, all of the data from each graph is being displayed at the cursor point. Makes it really easy to pinpoint particular changes from one run to the next. Also, if you've got multiple runs loaded up you can very easily choose to remove them from the display just by left clicking on them. That will remove them from the display, they'll gray out, but you can easily just add them back in again by left clicking. So what we're going to do now is we'll just remove our 12.5 to one run and our 13.5 to one run, and I just want to focus on our target fuel correction calculation.
This is another really nice function of the Mainline dyno. So our target fuel calculation, this comes from, if we click on our RPM table, we'll select that run here, so this allows the dyno to instantly calculate the required change we need to make to our fuel table and our ECU in order to correct any error to our target air fuel ratio. So let's just click at the moment, before we talk about these results, on our target fuel boost button. And this brings up another screen where we can set up our target air fuel ratio. This also works for boost pressure, on turbocharged vehicles.
The principles are the same but we're just going to focus solely on the air fuel ratio target. So what we can do here is either set up a single target air fuel ratio, which I've got set up at the moment, single value. We could also set up a 2D table, which will allow us to select our target air fuel ratio based on manifold pressure, or, if we wanna get really involved here, what we can do is set up a three dimensional table that's going to look a lot like the fuel table and our ECU. We can use RPM versus throttle position or manifold pressure. To keep things really simple here, I'm just using a single target air fuel ratio value, and I've entered the air fuel ratio target of 13 to one.
We're ignoring down here our boost, this is going to be used if we were doing the same for our target boost. So we can click on OK, and now we've got our values here. So what we've got is a calculation at each RPM point. We can choose our RPM steps here. You can see I've got them selected at 500 RPM increments.
So we can choose these to match whatever we're using in our fuel table and our ECU. So the dyno will then draw points, or plot points at each 500 RPM increment, you can see it couldn't quite do one at 1500, we started the run a little bit too high, so we've got our first point here at 1979, then 2000 RPM. We've got our measured lambda coming from our wide band lambda sensor on the ECU, plotted at each of these points. Our throttle position, which understandably should be pretty close to full throttle for our entire run, and then we've got our correction value. So in this instance remember our target air fuel ratio was 13 to one, and the ECU has calculated a correction factor, so in this case our measured air fuel ratio was 13.03, so what this means is that to get to our target we need to add a quarter a percent fuel.
Let's look at an area where we had a slightly larger error. So 4000 RPM, our measured air fuel ratio was 13.2, so in this case we were 1.5% leaner, 1.54% leaner than our target, so what this does is it makes it very easy for us to correct our fuel table, and what we can do is enter the value, if we click on each of these sites, which I've just done, you can actually enter the value that we may have in our fuel table and our ECU, and the dyno will straight away apply that correction. So it's a really nice easy way of making percentage adjustments to the fuel table, to get your fuel table dialed in really really quickly. Now obviously for the purposes of this demonstration, I've just used a really simple single target value. Of course, typically, we would set up a two dimensional table or maybe a three dimensional table, based on our boost pressure, and then we could adjust our target air fuel ratios to suit, this is a really nice way of quickly defining the percentage corrections that we need to make to our fuel table, and using that, you can dial your fuel table in in potentially just a few steps.
Now, I'm going to be moving into questions and answers really really shortly, I see that we've already got a few questions coming through, but if you do have anymore, please ask them in the chat, and I will get to those really shortly. Okay, now, I've talked already about our, smoothing, and I wanna talk a little bit more about how we can view our smoothing here, and also how we can average our data. So if we click on the data drop down menu, we can see that we can select our smoothing here. So this will give us a really good indication of the effect of our smoothing. So first of all, let's click no smoothing, so we can see that everything gets slightly more jagged.
If we click on Heavy Smoothing, we can see that we now end up losing a lot of the detail in our runs and they become really nice and smooth. Now I say nice and smooth, it might be nice if you want to get a smooth line drawn on the graph, but it's not particularly realistic in my opinion. I prefer to use light or no smoothing, so I can really, so I can really see exactly what's going on in the run that I've just completed. Now the other thing that we might want to do is make use of the averaging function in the Mainline dyno, so this is where we can perform three runs perhaps, or two runs, whatever you wanna do. And then, create an average run of that data.
So again, if we click on data, go down to average runs, in this case what I'm going to do is just simply average the three runs that we've got here. Typically, if we're going to use this function, what we would do is perform three runs with no changes. In this case, I've performed three runs using different air fuel ratios, so the output of this is probably relatively useless, but for the purposes of demonstration I'll click on OK, and then we can call this average, or whatever we want to call it, average run, and click OK, and that will create this as a new average run. And if I remove the other three runs, you can see that now we've got our average run. Any of our average runs will show the letter A there, capital letter A just to let us know that this is a calculated average run.
As a nice way, if you really want to be very accurate and remove the small run to run variations that we may see, if you want to do two or perhaps three runs and then average that, that will help you achieve more consistent results and make sure that any gains or losses that you are seeing are actually real. Okay, hopefully that's given you some more insight into what is obviously a complex piece of equipment, a complex piece of software, but if you understand some of the tricks and tips and shortcuts that I've shown you here, it's going to help you get the most out of what is an expensive piece of equipment for any tuning workshop, it's undoubtedly going to be the largest purchase, so we want to make sure that we're using it the best way possible and getting the best possible results. Let's move into our questions now. Our first one comes from Drag Racer who said, which tires are best for traction on a roller road? Soft tires or hard tires in terms of tread wear? Look I'll be honest, at this point in our experience with the dyno, we really haven't had anything on the dyno that has stretched our dyno's capabilities in terms of traction. That's probably more an indication of the type of cars that we've had across the dyno so far.
Certainly our 350Z at about 140 kilowatts at the wheel is never going to stretch the limits of adhesion, just about regardless of what tire we use. To Todd from Mainline about this very aspect. Obviously this is something that is quite a hot topic with a high-powered cars, his suggestion was to use a low profile tire, and even on the high horsepower cars that he runs at the likes of the horsepower heroes sort of dyno competitions, he's using a normal road-going tire, or perhaps a 20 inch tire, a wheel diameter with a very low profile tire, and that helps reduce the deformation of the tire. Now, that's actually probably more to do with reducing the losses with the tire deformation, so getting a better result as opposed to actually specifically traction, but this also allows you to strap a car down a lot harder without suffering from that tire deformation which can lose you power. So, generally though, my guide here, my suggestion would be, it's not too dissimilar from out on the road, a soft sticky tire is going to generally give you better adhesion to the dyno roller.
The upshot of that though is you can also end up getting those tires very hot on the dyno, and a very sticky soft tire can end up not lasting a particularly long time, so you need to keep that in mind. CypherMonk's asked for the CAN integration does the dyno get the CAN data via the OBD2 port? No, well. In our instance here, we were talking about a standalone ECU, I've actually rigged up a specific CAN and connector plug on the dashboard of the car, so I've got a really nice simple connector, I'll just try and pull this out while I'm talking, so this is our dyno CAN connector. It's just an XLR connector that I can quickly plug in to the dash on the car. So it makes connecting the car to the dyno literally a two second job.
Now I've also got a four pin DTM connector here, so this allows me to change to different adaptors depending on the ECU or the CAN device that I'm trying to integrate with. OBD2 support, however, is another option where the dyno can receive data from stock factory ECU's via the OBD2 port. Drag Racer's also asked, did you use the dyno to send dyno data to the ECU like torque? I have, not in this particular instance, and I can't actually remember where I got to with this. At the moment, that is dependent on the ECU receiving that data, so what I mean by this is we can't see this on every ECU. One of the ECU's where this is integrated and it works really well is on the Haltech platinum and elite range, because obviously Haltech and Mainline are both Australian products and both based in Sydney, they've done a lot of work together, so they've got really strong integration via CAN, and this does allow a few of the aspects, power, torque, and also roller speed to be displayed straight on your tuning screen, on the Haltech software.
So this means that we don't even need to look at the dyno software while we're tuning, particularly for MBT tuning, for our ignition timing for example, we can see exactly what's happening with the torque straight there on the laptop tuning software. I'm stretching my memory but I think there is also integration with the Link ECU, but it's a little bit more complex, it runs via an external adaptor, I just can't quite remember exactly how I did that. I have also done it with the Motec M1, and in that case the dyno emulates a Motec E888 output, so it emulates the E888 CAN data stream, and as long as we're reading the correct data into the ECU, exactly what we're looking for, we can see that same information, torque, roller speed, and power, coming from the dyno. Drag Racer's also asked, is using the tacho pickup not more accurate than using the derived RPM? Yeah, absolutely. So, I think I probably didn't touch on that enough.
So this is the three ways that we can get an RPM input for use in display, on the display on our dyno graphs. We can use the derived RPM, which comes from our roller speed to engine RPM correlation. Now, as I've already discussed, due to tire deformation, potentially wheel spin, that is not always accurate. Certainly if you're running an automatic transmission vehicle, it's definitely not going to be accurate, particularly in the area where there is a lot of slip in the torque convertor. So we do need to be aware of that.
The other option, our dyno is equipped with this, is in a tacho module, which allows us to connect directly to an ignition lead, or an igniter output, and get the engine RPM data that way. This does require one more step where we're going to tell the ECU how many cylinders or how many pulses per engine revolution it's expecting to see. For example, that will differ on a waste spark system versus a direct spark system. Also on a distributor system, there'll be more sparks per engine revolution on an eight cylinder versus a four cylinder engine, so that's a very direct way of getting that information. It does require us to actually get our hands dirty in the engine bay.
Taking that data via the ECU and CAN of course, nice and clean, we've already got that setup configured, so, there's no additional work for us to do there. Drag Racer's also asked, how can you check if your run had some wheel spin? Okay, so there's a really good question there. If we are getting the data from the ECU, so we're getting our RPM data from our ECU or directly from our tacho, all we can do is look at the correlation between our engine RPM and our roller speed, and what we should expect to see there, within reason, is a straight line correlation. We should see an absolute straight line correlation if we're getting no wheel spin. If on the other hand, if we're getting wheel spin, that relationship of the engine RPM to road speed obviously no longer holds true, so we'll see that show up in our data.
Obviously, if we are using derived RPM, this isn't going to help us because the derived RPM comes directly from our roller speed, so it will show up that wheel spin, won't highlight the wheel spin. Drag Racer's also asked, which ramp rates do you use for which power? And so what I like to do here is try and make my ramp runs as realistic as possible, so what I'm trying to do is replicate the sort of acceleration rates that we might see out on the road or the racetrack, and what I really want to do is focus my efforts on where the car is in a high gear, perhaps fourth or maybe fifth gear where it's under high load. So, we're going to be trying to replicate the acceleration rate in that sort of gear, fourth or fifth. There's not a lot of point trying to replicate the sort of acceleration we'd see in first or maybe second gear, obviously during the gear ratio being very short, we're getting very fast acceleration rates, and what this will do is produce a limited amount of load on the engine and we're not going to get a really good indication of the state of tune, both with our air fuel ratio as well as the engine's propensity for knock. So, in other words, the harder we load up the engine, the more likely the engine is to suffer from knock, so if we've got our engine loaded up very heavily and we're doing a run at perhaps four or 500 RPM per second ramp rate, this is going to mean that if our engine is not suffering from knock under those conditions, and also our air fuel ratio is on target, we can be very sure that when we release the car out onto the road or the racetrack, the engine is going to be safe.
So what I often do when I'm performing my tuning is I'll perform all of my tuning with realistic ramp rates, so four, 500 RPM per second, and if I'm worried about the car, perhaps I've got an engine that is very susceptible to knock, what I'll possibly do with one or two ramp runs right at the end where I use a much slower ramp rate, perhaps as slow as maybe 200 RPM per second. So it's going to apply a massive amount of thermal load on the engine, the engine's gonna be under load for perhaps 18 or 20 seconds during that ramp run, and under those conditions, if the engine is susceptible to knock, it's going to be much more likely to knock, so if we know under those conditions our air fuel is on target, and our engine isn't suffering from knock, we can be very sure that we're not going to strike any problems out in the real world. XYZ has asked, how does the Mainline dyno software compare to some of the more popular dynos as far as the options we've spoken of in this webinar? I can't speak for every dyno brand. My main experience is with Dynapack. I've used one of those and own one personally for about eight years, so huge amount of experience with that particular brand.
I've also used a Dynojet dynos, in various locations around the world. Never had any experience with Mustang at this point. And really, the dyno software with the Mainline dynolog is light years ahead of both the Dynapack and the Dynojet software, in terms of the CAN integration as I've mentioned as well as the flexibility with the analysis. We're going to look in our future advanced webinar at some of the more advanced test functions. If you watch any of our webinars, or any of our courses, you'll have already seen me use functions such as the torque optimization test, and to the best of my knowledge this still isn't a function that is offered by any other dyno brand.
So this gives a huge amount more flexibility to the tuner in how they view and use the data to speed up their tuning, and particularly for us it's a great teaching tool as well. So, yeah, again, in my opinion, hands down it is the most advanced software available that I've used. This comes at a price though, because it is a complex piece of software, as you've already seen during our demonstration with the webinar today. There is a lot to it, there are layers of complexity, there's layers of menus, and it is very easy to get lost, not understand the process you need to go through in order to achieve a certain result, it is quite a confusing software package that does take you some time to become familiar and competent with. Alright guys, looks like that's brought us to the end of our questions, so hopefully today's dyno demonstration has been really useful, particularly obviously for those of you out there who are using the Mainline brand of dyno.
Hopefully for those of you who may be considering a purchase of a Mainline dyno, it's given you some insight into some of those more advanced functions. Remember, this webinar does run on from our basic introductory webinar on the Mainline dyno, please watch that if you haven't already, and keep an eye out for our upcoming advanced webinar to give you a more complete picture. As usual, if you do have any further questions, please ask those in the forum, and I'll answer them there. Thanks guys, and we'll see you all next time.