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A week ago I took the stagea to All Asian Day at Lakeside here in Brisbane. It was a pretty fun time and the stag felt great on the track. It was a happy laps style of event, two lanes of cars the whole way around the track then everyone lined up for roll races down the straight. 

Despite having a refreshed motor, the stag is basically still in stock form, only with the boost turned up a little bit (which is kind of pointless hitting R&R anyway haha) and felt heavy and slow down the straight. Will definitely benefit there from some tuning and turning things up a bit.

Corners were a very different story though! Being AWD and sitting so low on the Tein coilovers meant I could power through corners insanely fast! I kept pushing harder and harder to try and see where the limit was before chirping the tyres but ultimately it wouldn't do it, it just hugged the road even at some quite high speeds which was very damn impressive. 

Here's a pic pulled up after some laps to cool off -

Lakeside small.jpg

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Things have also taken a more serious route this week... picked up a Haltech Elite 2000 along with the "Plug and Pin" kit so I can snip the injector and ignition wires going into the stagea ECU and feed them into the Haltech, leaving the stock ECU to control the auto shifting (my ECU seems to be the early Hitachi version with only 1x ECU which controls the engine and auto in one).

May not be perfect but it will do the trick for the timebeing, plus it has a tonne of extra features that will come in handy later when I can run it as a standalone. 

Haltech.jpg

Edited by mosquitocoils
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Haha yeah I agree! 

I figure this will be able to do everything I need and more... spending the little extra now will be a big help in future for things like knock control, launch control (probably not necessary but pretty neat!) and having the extra CAN port as I like the idea of adding on the extra stuff down the track. 

For example the wideband controller and  multi-gauge (which I might like to run later to see ethanol % etc) both run on CAN so can both plug into the 2000 without an extra CAN adapter. 

And the flex fuel sensor and boost controllers both run on a standard digital connection to the haltech so don't need a CAN port.

Anyway, now I have options. 

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With christmas holidays in full swing I had a bit of time to start pulling the hotside off and see how much room I had to play with. It's nice seeing an engine this clean. 

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The new manifold is going to get a once-over before it's all torqued down finally (cleanup and add some weld in a couple of suspicious spots, typical of a china manifold I'm told) but the purpose of this was just to test fitment. I left everything how it was when I got it and we ended up like this (which is less than ideal with the turbo output positioned up in the air):

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It might work... but I would like to avoid running the piping over the strut tower 😅. I also need to figure out what to do with my power steering reservoir, it's a little in the way now. 

So I reclocked the turbo so the output is down nice and low which looks much nicer and easier to work with:

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Can anyone tell me if running a silicone 90 degree off the turbo output this close to the exhaust manifold is a bad idea? Too hot = melt? Or would the silicone pipe be fine as long as it's not touching, keeping in mind the manifold is wrapped? Once everything is tightening properly I will have around 0.5-1 inch extra space so I think I can rotate the turbo some more, which should push the output further away from the manifold (to the right of screen).

4.jpg.edad482d45b903bab82654e10c404238.jpg

Edited by mosquitocoils

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Will melt, unless you have a sheet of ACL head shield between it. However, even the hot compressed air out of the turbo will be enough to eventually blow apart the silicone bend.

I personally would pop off the comp cover, buy an eBay special 90 degree cast bend and get it welded to the comp outlet.

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That's not a bad idea about welding a 90 degree bend on to the compressor outlet... Might see if my mate can help me with that later this week as well.

Although I find it hard to believe that a turbo's hot output would be enough to damage/melt a silicone elbow, most cars I've owned or mates that I've worked on have had silicone couplers coming off the turbo and they've lasted forever. I'm really just curious about the direct heat from the exhaust manifold cause it's so close.

That heatshield stuff looks pretty good too! Might be unnecessary if I end up with a welded compressor but would probably make a good intake shield!

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Pretty much every turbo needs a 90 bend welded on

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5 hours ago, mosquitocoils said:

Although I find it hard to believe that a turbo's hot output would be enough to damage/melt a silicone elbow

Street use no, track use they blow every track day for me (old setup).

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On 12/25/2019 at 4:45 PM, Dose Pipe Sutututu said:

Street use no, track use they blow every track day for me (old setup).

Ah gotcha, that's a good distinction to make and one my level of knowledge/experience hasn't had the need for yet! 

Hopefully this stagea will be that car though so I will work towards welding a 90 degree bend on the turbo. 

Meant to be welding tomorrow so we'll see what happens. 

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No manifold welding today but hopefully in the next few days.

However I did manage to snag a pretty good deal on an Optima yellow top battery to replace that cruddy tiny thing that's in there at the moment.

- 750cca
- 55ah

Vs my current battery:
- 340cca
- 30ah
- things are so bad I drop 0.3v instantly by turning the headlights on... and the battery voltage slowly depletes while driving

So this will require a relocation to the boot which I'll start sizing up over the next days/weeks or so. I also really like the fact that the battery came with a lid... and an instruction booklet...

1.jpg

2.jpg

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Sexual, I have that in my Crapline and I can leave the car without a trickle charger for 4~6 weeks and the POS still starts up :)

  • Haha 1

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My mate came around with his welder and we pulled everything off to check over and weld up if required. 

We just quickly pulled back some of the heatwrap and found that it had previously been welded up which is awesome! There are some cracks on the inside around the collector but none of them goes all the way through. We tried pouring a little water very carefully around the cracks and none came through the outside of the pipes so I guess based on our very scientific test that we're all good and didn't worry about having a go ourselves. 

2a.jpg

I also tidied up one of the bolt holes on the T3 flange as it was burred and I couldn't get a bolt into it. Ended up using a tap/chaser my friend had it so hopefully it holds alright. 

2c.jpg

Cleaned it all out then got it torqued onto the motor. 

3b.jpg

Next is trying to figure out the turbo itself... after looking around for a T3 "offset spacer" for a while, I realise they don't exist... So my current plan is to just go ahead as is and leave the outlet up near the strut tower. I just have to relocate the power steering reservoir but I think I have enough room in the stock lines to get it next to the radiator. Time will tell!

5.jpg

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Also I know the MAF is no good there, this was purely to test fit my piping/filter haha. I'll eventually either run a 90 degree down into the corner of the engine bay, or what I'd prefer to do - run MAP sensor instead since the Haltech has it. 

Edited by mosquitocoils

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It's been a little while, things have been slow but I've had some time to get some minor things done. 

I managed to get the power steering reservoir relocated by gently bending the hardlines (very, very gently) and making up a bracket to mount the bottle to the front support next to the radiator. I've started it and moved it a couple of times and I had a small leak from one of the soft hoses, which was easily fixed with a fresh clamp as those old press clamps are all old and ratty. 

This meant I can be happy with the turbo output placement and I also made up a new intake pipe that's a bit longer with a bend in it to keep the MAF happy. I found out the hard way that the MAF didn't like the previous setup AT ALL... like even pushing the accelerator slightly, to just move the car in and out of the garage, would cause it to stall immediately. As soon as I put this stainless bend in, the idle improved dramatically and I could accelerate normally again with no stalling. I know the previous setup was going to cause problems but I didn't expect it to be so noticeable!

1.jpg.4694e6f5a4bef712ff016ba4c40d2ffe.jpg

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So are you going to get a MAP sensor or are you happy with the MAF? Have you had it on a dyno? Guess it won't be possible for a while.

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6 hours ago, KiwiRS4T said:

So are you going to get a MAP sensor or are you happy with the MAF? Have you had it on a dyno? Guess it won't be possible for a while.

I'm happy with MAF for now just to get things running... The Haltech has an inbuilt 3 bar MAP sensor, so one of my goals is to get that hooked up sooner rather than later. Then I'll need the IAT sensor as well (threading into cold side piping) which is only about $50 and I'll be good to go MAP tune. 

No dyno yet although I'd love to! At this stage I just need to get the dump pipe plumbed into the rest of the catback system then I can at least drive it on the road again without having an insanely loud dump exit haha. 

Hopefully getting a welder soon so I'm going to give some pie cuts a go myself. Should be interesting! Once the exhaust is fixed up I'll be taking it for a spin because it won't be drawing anywhere near as much attention!

Edited by mosquitocoils

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The other thing I've managed to do is finally get my Haltech ECU powered up... required multiple power/ground wires and I have to give many thanks to Haltech support because I'm such a potato.

1.jpg.ba986aa86a8b990667ae893055645040.jpg

I'm not bad with electrical stuff but I've never seen these pins or plugs, or made my own loom so needed to be put on the right track. These pins have to be pushed far, far further in than I guessed, and there's also a little locking tab on the connector itself that locks the pins into place... of course if that's 'locked' from the start the pins won't go in properly...

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Anyway... got that sorted out and BOOM! Laptop hooked up and communicating!

3.jpg.c433a27db31c30920903ee084bc93f36.jpg

Then a couple of days later (I work slowly...) I managed to trace the coolant temp sensor (CTS) from the ECU loom and patch that into my Haltech loom as well - showed 16 degrees which matched the ambient temp so I'm satisfied that's correct (for now...).

4.jpg.1ca2970d57a9edbd06309c0da22fe36e.jpg

So far this is the only sensor I have piggybacked, next up will be CAS and MAF, then after some more time run some vacuum line to the internal MAP sensor on the ECU and install the IAT sensor. Hopefully by the time I get to that point I can get on the road and start datalogging.

Edited by mosquitocoils
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Managed to take the stag for a spin around the block this week! With the exhaust not hooked up (so just the dump off the turbo)... obviously it was always going to be loud as hell! I don't think I took it above 2500rpm the whole time it was just so obnoxiously loud hahaha... seemed to drive very differently too, not sure if that's the GT35 lag or if I missed something and have a big boost leak so I will be checking everything over. 

Picked up my mates welder so the next thing on the agenda is to hooked the dump pipe up to the rest of the previous exhaust... Once it's a bit quieter I'll be able to drive it around a bit more and focus on what's going on with boost.

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Good to see somebody take the time to do it himself. It's not the end product (well.....maybe), it's the journey. I'll be watching this one.

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Wow, it's been a while since the last update.

I borrowed my mates welder, learnt how to weld (really badly) and set about fixing up the dump to suit the new turbo. The GT35 I got came with a dump but it didn't meet up with the cat, plus it actually fouled on the auto transmission. So I had to cut + bend it sideways about 1-2 inches, weld in some new pie cuts to fill in the gaps, then fix up the flange on the cat section to meet the new angle of the dump.

Here's a quick pictorial version... keep in mind I've never welded before and learnt a lot, the hard way, and in a very compressed format as I could only work on it for an hour or two each week. So please, no judging... haha

Cutting out my 'pie cuts':

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Welding the pie cuts into place

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Now you can actually see daylight between the dump and transmission:

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Once the dump was fixed up it was time to re-jig the front pipe of the cat, to mate with the rear of the dump:

vlcsnap-2020-06-15-22h39m56s591.thumb.png.209ad463727ff32fcf8e05ed19342136.png
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(I welded the flange on, but no pics.)
 

Test fitted it all back together - A-OK!

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While I had the welder I also welded in a new o2 sensor bung, as the one already in the dump pipe was on a bad angle and if the sensor was installed it would foul on the strut tower/ABS lines in that back corner. Once running on the Haltech fulltime I don't think I need an o2 sensor for normal driving so I plan to use this hole for a Haltech wideband anyway.

Had to buy a new badass stepper drill bit, this thing is mental and has made quick work of these holes that my other drill bits couldn't.

vlcsnap-2020-06-15-22h45m04s685.thumb.png.95a2224d6b625de0438b3f7386bce759.png


The final product (ignore my over-zealous wire wheel work haha):

vlcsnap-2020-06-15-22h45m39s939.thumb.png.434022f601f7261d0525fde891a82a5e.png


So that's where it's up to for now... exhaust is back on and the car is driveable once again! It's a laggy setup (only hitting around 2-3psi at around 3500rpm, which is as high as I dare take it just yet), although with the exhaust on it definitely picked up low-end power.

I know I need more fuel, properly tune etc which is all coming. But the couple of short trips around the block have at least appeased me that the idea looks like it might actually work!

1106318085_2020-06-1121_32_29-.png.33ba418ea2653c5ea414070ed7eae2f8.png

Edited by mosquitocoils
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