Friday 29th June 2012
Last night I made some changes to the undertray so that it fits between the two reinforcing arms for the front suspension, and allows the wheels to clear on full lock. The composite board is so easy to work with. Tonight I'll start on the support brackets. My Dad is popping over to Surefast in Syston to get some M6 threaded rod, and I've ordered some balljoints from RSWWW, to make up the turnbuckles that support the leading edge of the spoiler/undetray.
Thursday 28th June 2012
Last night I removed the front wheels from the Fiesta, and trimmed the spoiler. Looks a lot neater now. I'll see if the bits I've cut off can be re-used, to curve the front edges over the edges of the wheel arches. Good progress so far.
Wednesday 27th June 2012
Collected the composite board (aluminium/plastic/aluminium) and set to cutting it to the same profile as the front spoiler. Next job is to trim the ends of the spoiler, so they dont go behind the front arch extensions, and make some pillars to support the composite board in situ, so I can then bond the spoiler to it (using sikaflex) and start to make some side pieces to the ends of the spoiler so it blends with the arches. Difficult to describe, but easy enough for me to get on with. I'll jack the front up and remove the front wheels to give me some more space to work in.
Race Technology confirmed that CAN data transfer is not dependant on the GPS Lock signal so I should be able to read the data on my DL1 without the engine running, from inside the garage. I'll try it again, but its a low priority.
Tuesday 26th June 2012
I've ordered a couple of sheets of 3mm composite sign board, 400x1600mm, which will form the basis of the splitter/spoiler mount. I'll bond them together to make a 6mm thick board, and cut them out. Other news: my entry for the NSCC sprint at MIRA has been accepted. And I bought a logic probe from Maplin so I can buzz the CAN connections through in to the CAN adaptor to see if the ECU is connected correctly. I've a question awaiting answer on the RaceTechnology forum concerning the default action of the DL1 Mk2. In my garage it is unable to obtain a GPS lock 100% of the time, and I want to know if the CAN data is not captured by the DL1 until GPS Lock is achieved. If it is the case, and GPS lock is required, then I know I'm not wasting my time chasing a fault that doesn't exist.
Monday 25th June 2012
I've fastened the spoiler to the car using self tapping screws, just to hold it in place whilst I work on the Undertray/splitter. I've asked on various forums for the best material to use, and the advice seems to suggest that an aluminium/plastic/aluminium composite is best. My local sign shop sells a 3mm composite sheet, cut to any size, so I'll measure up and make some templates, and try to get some cut out this week. My latest idea is to bond the spoiler permanently to the undertray, and securely mount the undertray to the chassis, which will help keep the spoiler in place. Then I can use dzus fasteners to locate the spoiler where it attaches to the shell, and the whole lot should be removable should I need to do so. I shall probably double up the 3mm sheet where the board needs to be stiffest (ie around the mounts).
Wednesday 20th June 2012
Trimmed off the top of the front spoiler tonight. I'll start fabricating the support bracketry once I've got the spoiler sat where I'm happy with it!
I just bought an OBD-KEY scanner which is a device that plugs in to the OBDII port on a car, and it sends via bluetooth all of the live data from the ECU to an application, either on a Windows PC or on a mobile phone. I'm using Torque for Android which is a very capable application, and it allows the data captured to be written to a CSV file. So far I've found some very interesting information regarding the odd tickover that the Subaru Diesel has. Every 20s the fuel pressure at tickover rises from c4000psi up to c16000psi, and it sits at that level for around 5s before it then drops the pressure back to c4000psi. This behaviour repeats every 20 seconds, when the engine is warm, and the car is standing with the engine ticking over. Most odd.
Monday 18th June 2012
What little time I have in the garage in the evenings is precious enough, so tonight was doubly frustrating that I wasted another 1.5 hours trying to get the ECU to talk to the Data logger over Serial CAN. I flashed the firmware in the CAN cable, to the latest version, and I'm confident that the cable itself is working properly, otherwise it wouldn't have taken the firmware update. Whats puzzling is that the Lite monitor on the laptop only shows data generated by the DL1, with no sign of anything collected from the ECU. The DL1 also threw a couple of wobblies during testing, and corrupted the RUN file that it created, and also created a Folder and File named RT040101, which I'm assuming is the default date code generated when the device cant get a GPS fix.
My last resort now is to check the cable interface between the CAN H and L wires on the ECU and the 9 way D-Type connector provided by Race Technology, that interfaces the ECU to the CAN adapter cable. This could have the CAN H and L wires the wrong way round, or it could be missing the 120 Ohm resistor that is supposed to terminate the CAN BUS, or it could just be shorting the wires out, or not connecting them to the right pins on the ECU connector. I'll try and sum up the enthusiasm again tonight to have a look.
I did also offer up the Kamei front spoiler on the front of the Fiesta, with a view to cannibalising it to form the mount for the Berg cup spoiler. I'll give it a bit more thought tomorrow before cutting anything up.
Here is a short video of the Lite monitor running on the laptop, and the total lack of any data from the ECU. I'm assuming that the ECU starts sending Serial CAN data as soon as it is switched on, and it doesn't need the engine to be running in order to begin the process.
Sunday 17th June 2012
I have flashed the firmware in the DL1 Mk2 datalogger tonight, in an attempt to get it talking to the ECU over Serial CAN. I've never had it reading the data from the DTA box. It was running firmware v11, and is now running v43. Next job to do is to recreate the BIN file and copy it on to CF card, switch the DL1 on and see if I can get it to show the data. Using the Lite monitor, it currently only shows the data from the DL1, even with the ECU switched on, so it could just be the missing BIN file thats preventing it from passing the data through. I had previously configured the DL1, but flashing the firmware today most likely cleared the config. The next item to upgrade is the firmware in the CAN adaptor cable itself. It has a self contained ECU which also needs updating given the purchase date of 2008.
I've trimmed the ends of the front spoiler, and cut some more material off the ends of the MCR arches, and the spoiler now fits below the front of the Fiesta. Its about the ride height that I want, but there's a gap between the spoiler and the car, so I'll try to raise the spoiler up to close the gap, and look at making some support brackets to hold it in place. The photo of the silver Escort is the look I'm aiming for.
Whilst I had the laptop out I reset the throttle stops in the ECU and set it to also log the Oil Temperature and Battery Voltage, instead of MAP pressure and Pumpjet, neither of which I was interested in.
Thursday 14th June 2012
Removed the old spoiler last night. I ended up just going for the brute force technique, and with leather gauntlets protecting my hands, pulled upwards on the fibreglass until the sikaflex seal finally gave up. Next job is to trim the top of the new spoiler to the right shape, and also trim the ends so that the wheel arches mate as best as I can make them, with the replacement. I also need to place the spoiler as low down as I can, as I intend to run a front splitter, so ground clearance is pretty important. I may end up making some support brackets to hold everything in place.
I've sent off my entry for the NSCC sprint at MIRA on August 11th. Its not a million miles from where I live, and should be a good test for the new aero package on the car.
Wednesday 13th June 2012
I started removing the front bib spoiler last night. I cut the join between the front offside wheel arch extension and the existing spoiler, and then spent a frustrating quarter of an hour trying to pull the spoiler off. Sikaflex is great for sticking body kits on, but not so good when you actually want to remove anything. I'll try running a length of string or chord between the body work and the spoiler and see if I can cut through the sealent by pulling the chord back and forth.
Spotted a Ferrari 275GTB on the way home last night, heading in to Leicester. Very rare, one of only 62 surviving, and worth around 900,000 Euros according to Google. (reg no KCK129F)
Tuesday 12th June 2012
The front spoiler arrived safely today, its very well made and very light so I'm now tasked with fitting it to the front of the car prior to the Blyton event in just 38 days time.
Monday 11th June 2012
Welded the additional reinforcements to my gearbox bracket, after I noticed that it had been flexing (whitness marks left on the paintwork of the chassis rail). The bracket is now sprayed with primer, and I'll add black paint this week. I was going to have it painted professionaly, but Faircharm are up against it restoring an Alvis, and couldn't fit my work in for a couple of weeks. I've refilled the radiator with antifreeze/water mix, and there are no leaks from the new pump. I'm told that the front spoiler should be with me this week, and I'm toying with ordering a rear diffuser too at the moment.
Tuesday 5th June 2012
Flashed the firmware in the DTA S80 ECU with the latest version (V63) today. It took a few goes tog get the ST10 software to communicate with the ECU. When I installed the s/w it asked if I wanted to overwrite newer versions of the DLL's that already existed on the computer. So I said No, and this was the issue. I removed and reinstalled the software and allowed it to overwrite the newer versions with the old ones that it needed, and the ST10 software started to work. Note: When working on the ECU I'm using a very old HP Omnibook 900 with Windows XP (SP2), and a 5GB hard drive. The 900 has a 9 way serial port built in, so I know its always going to be reliable to use when I'm out and about.
Whilst hooked up to the ECU I also downloaded the ECU Logged data captured during the last 15 minute session at Mallory Park, and it shows that the water temperature and lambda voltages were well within range whilst the Fiesta was being driven hard. One thing the ECU wasn't logging was the Oil Temperature, which I've now set to be recorded. The water temperature starts off at around 90c when I first started to drive round the track, and gradually lap by lap, the temperature reduces to 67c. Remember I'm not running a thermostat, but I'm not concerned at all by the temperatures.
I've also fitted the new water pump, reconnected the drive belt, and checked the front suspension out, which also seems to have survived the outing. I've discovered a problem with the front gearbox mount flexing, so I've removed it, and will add a 90° brace to the bracket which will solve the problem. Whilst its off I'll have the bracket painted professionally by Faircharm, as the rattle can paint is coming off.