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Old 12-01-2015, 10:22 AM   #1
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Tuning Options

I'm looking to try and get the most out of the mods on my Yaris (keep in mind it's my DD) and I've been trying to find out info on tuning it. Now I know the obvious, that Toyota ECU's are virtualy untunable.

This leads me to go to something like a piggyback ECU. I have no experience with these things but I'm interested as it seems to make more sense to spend some money on something like this than over priced bolt on options that make minimal increases due to a lack of specific tuning. I've gotten to a point where I'm happy with my engine mods but if a piggy back is possible then it would make sense to do that.

I've read reviews stating that they're useless and a scam or a waste of money. However, all the boosted guys seem to be running them to tune their turbo's with and they seem to work ok.

My question is: with my NA engine, is there a piggyback ECU I could run and get tuned so that I can maximize my mods? If so, will this make me fail my e-test (they only hook up to the OBD port and check for CEL's. If none are present and the ECU has ran through everything than I pass. Will the piggyback ECU lead to engine reliability issues where I have to constantly be re mapping it (not an option for me as I need the car to drive every weekday).

I know a lot of you boosted guys on here know a lot about this stuff so I figured you all can enlighten me
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Old 12-01-2015, 07:27 PM   #2
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A piggyback ECU will provide negligible gains at best on a NA car. For FI Yaris it is necessary, as the ECM is not designed to properly adjust the fuel and ignition under boost.
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Old 12-01-2015, 08:58 PM   #3
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I have a CamCom piggy back currently installed but I have it turned off because the only tuner I can find is 4 hours away and will cost me $500 to dyno tune it. Dyno tuned is recommended because you will need to know if you are gaining or losing power when adjustments to the cams are made between pulls.

CamCom not only adjust fuel trim but also advanced/retards cams. Jason Isley used to run this in his H Prod yaris before he switched to AEM EMS standalone setup. Said he was very impressed with how much power the N/A could get.

food for thought
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Old 12-01-2015, 09:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilikerice View Post
I have a CamCom piggy back currently installed but I have it turned off because the only tuner I can find is 4 hours away and will cost me $500 to dyno tune it. Dyno tuned is recommended because you will need to know if you are gaining or losing power when adjustments to the cams are made between pulls.

CamCom not only adjust fuel trim but also advanced/retards cams. Jason Isley used to run this in his H Prod yaris before he switched to AEM EMS standalone setup. Said he was very impressed with how much power the N/A could get.

food for thought
Wasn't Jason running with a modified cam?
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Old 12-02-2015, 04:29 AM   #5
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http://www.yarisworld.com/forums/sho...=24534&page=11

Post 182 he mentions tuning with CamCom. I had to read all the pages before this to see if he installed cams or regrind, no mention, just suspension, tires and working out issues with the wiring.

I stopped after that because I need to go to work now. I will read more later on to see when he did the cams...
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Old 12-02-2015, 08:47 AM   #6
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ADD:

on post #223, Jason did 11 ft-lbs of torque and 13 whp increase when turned on. Still haven't come across when he did anything to the cams. So far that is just simple bolt-ons and stock motor
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Old 12-02-2015, 08:59 AM   #7
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Your right about no cams required. I remember specifically reading a post from Jason saying theirs a lt more power to be tapped out of the 1NZ without cams. I know the guy's who swapped Prius pistons use piggy backs to tune the AFR which is a must. A good AFR piggy will cost you about $500.
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Old 12-02-2015, 09:36 AM   #8
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You don't need at least a wideband AFR sensor too?
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Old 12-02-2015, 09:42 AM   #9
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Just to clariy, i'm looking for a decent piggyback unit to then get tuned on a dyno like you all had mentioned. I expect it to cost a little bit.

I have a couple Q's:

1. With a piggy back unit installed in is plug and play and then just a matter of getting a tune?

2. Will I be able to just unplug the PB and go back to stock with no issues?

3. Would I need to disconnect it to get my etest done in Ontario to pass? It is only an OBD plug in to check for engine codes type test.

Like I said, i'm at the point where I am happy with all my mods and don't want to spend the high amount of money it costs to do any further mods. Since i'm at this point, it makes sense to finish it off with a tune to maximize what i've done to the engine. If this can be don't fairly straightforward then i'd like to look into it in the near future.

Keep in mind I plan on staying NA. I feel that another 10+ whp is worth it and would be great to have on the Yaris for the rest of its life. I'd just like to be able to put it back to stock if ever needed by simply unplugging th PB unit.

I'll read the link posted above
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Old 12-02-2015, 11:19 AM   #10
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Quote:
jmanous You don't need at least a wideband AFR sensor too?
Yes

Quote:
Originally Posted by tmontague View Post
Just to clariy, i'm looking for a decent piggyback unit to then get tuned on a dyno like you all had mentioned. I expect it to cost a little bit.

I have a couple Q's:

1. With a piggy back unit installed in is plug and play and then just a matter of getting a tune? The only PnP I know of is the AEM,(correct me if I am wrong) which uses a boomslang harness that is about $500 alone. I have heard that you will need to do some of the pins because users have had issues with loose wires. Everything else I have seen is hard wired in, although you could make your own plug n play,with a couple of connectors in line of the harness.

2. Will I be able to just unplug the PB and go back to stock with no issues?
In theory, yes.

3. Would I need to disconnect it to get my etest done in Ontario to pass? It is only an OBD plug in to check for engine codes type test. no clue, someone else will have to chime in on that.

Like I said, i'm at the point where I am happy with all my mods and don't want to spend the high amount of money it costs to do any further mods. Since i'm at this point, it makes sense to finish it off with a tune to maximize what i've done to the engine. If this can be don't fairly straightforward then i'd like to look into it in the near future.

Keep in mind I plan on staying NA. I feel that another 10+ whp is worth it and would be great to have on the Yaris for the rest of its life. I'd just like to be able to put it back to stock if ever needed by simply unplugging th PB unit.

I'll read the link posted above
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Old 12-02-2015, 12:32 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CTScott View Post
A piggyback ECU will provide negligible gains at best on a NA car. For FI Yaris it is necessary, as the ECM is not designed to properly adjust the fuel and ignition under boost.
I picked up something like 8hp/8tq on a fairly stock engine using an aftermarket ECU and 91oct. Cam timing on this motor is pretty conservative, the same goes for ignition timing, and fueling.
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Old 12-02-2015, 01:42 PM   #12
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Ilikerice: Ouch, that's tough news, I was hoping something was plug and play into the OE ECU and then just getting a tune.

If I have to hardwire it all up then i'll just leave my Yaris Yaris is. I can't be playing around with the ECU wires on my DD Yaris, too risky if it goes wrong.

I'll look into AEM's PB unit, although if it's more than $500 I don't think it's worth it plus the tune. I'm assuming this is why so few Yaris owners on this forum who are NA have run a tuned PB unit

Xnamerxx: what unit did you go with, and how was connecting it to the OE ECU? P and P or did you have to hardwire it?
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Old 12-02-2015, 03:55 PM   #13
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hmm, been doing a ton more reading on the camcon. It's had some good results in the other Toyota Forums it seems. Other than splicing a few wires is seems straightforward.

Is it true that I would have to run a different O2 sensor (wideband) or is it enough to have the camcon installed and then tune it to improve the timing and afr to run on 91 octane?

It doesn't seem that this would have a negative effect on an etest either as the obd port is still accessible and as long as there are no issues with the car there should be no cel's triggered.

Anyone on here who has one installed care to explain what they had to purchase to make it run properly (different O2 sensore etc) and how the installation was as well as how it runs long term?
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Old 12-02-2015, 09:29 PM   #14
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Any piggyback will require feedback from its own o2 sensor and it needs to be a wideband. To be realistic you will be spending between $750-2000 when it is said and done between piggyback, harness, sensor, Dyno pulls, etc. Also because the stock ECM does a hell of a job correcting itself you will probably have issues every so often with it putting you back to 14.7 afr. I am pretty sure that Jason didn't see his gains until he installed his JUN NA Cam set which runs $1000 for the pair from JUN directly. My two cents is that you are chasing futility. The only reason why anyone has done a piggyback with this car NA is because they race with it in some form. That is the only justification for the investment. If you are going to spend upwards of $1000+ then you might as well research that 2zr swap as it is relatively straight forward, will be OEM reliable, and net around 130hp rather than the 106hp at the crank. Scott got to ride in the swapped rig AFAIK while on a trip and came away pretty impressed.

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Old 12-02-2015, 09:45 PM   #15
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9-13 HP gain for the cost of a piggyback + wideband + tuning is what I am considering to be negligible gains.
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Old 12-03-2015, 02:00 AM   #16
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Sounds like everyone's on the same page on this. A lot of cash for little gain.

One other option I recal posting about some time ago (that you may or may not consider given that it raises some flags) was regarding an ECU flash tune that's available from Agency Power.

http://www.agency-power.com/catalog/...150794659.html

No one on here has any info on it, what it does or if it even works. I would have wanted to get one and send it off to CTScott and have him probe it to see if it does anything, given that this is a semi-legitimate tuning company.
It's all in the interest of R&D, but I currently don't have the funds necessary to do so.
And there doesn't seem to be enough interest in it to have more people help out either.

IDK, this might all be just a waste of time and money so, everyone, feel free to ignore me and/or tell me how much of an idiot/moron I am.
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Old 12-03-2015, 04:28 AM   #17
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Any piggyback will require feedback from its own o2 sensor and it needs to be a wideband. To be realistic you will be spending between $750-2000 when it is said and done between piggyback, harness, sensor, Dyno pulls, etc. Also because the stock ECM does a hell of a job correcting itself you will probably have issues every so often with it putting you back to 14.7 afr. I am pretty sure that Jason didn't see his gains until he installed his JUN NA Cam set which runs $1000 for the pair from JUN directly. My two cents is that you are chasing futility. The only reason why anyone has done a piggyback with this car NA is because they race with it in some form. That is the only justification for the investment. If you are going to spend upwards of $1000+ then you might as well research that 2zr swap as it is relatively straight forward, will be OEM reliable, and net around 130hp rather than the 106hp at the crank. Scott got to ride in the swapped rig AFAIK while on a trip and came away pretty impressed.

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He has a good point for cost. I know you have already spent a good amount of money all additional mods specifically to the 1nz (intake, TB, port matching TB to Intake, exhaust). But if you wanted to spend $1000 for 10-15hp, the 2zr swap will cost around $2000 for direct bolt in to have a base of ~130hp reliable and stock. You probably could sell your 1nz motor for $500 and part out the other stuff...
TB sells for about $80-$100, Throw in your matched manifold for another $100
Header sells about $150-$200
SRI intake can sell for about the same..

SO you are looking at getting about half your money back if you sell your old setup after you get the 2zr...

Just a thought to consider also when weighing price/hp
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Old 12-03-2015, 10:58 AM   #18
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I appreciate all the info given on this thread from people with various experience with this topic. It seems that Toyota's ECU wins out (hence why there are so few tuned Yota's) and I'll have to stick with what I have.

The price it will cost is just not worth it to me as a grad student with a baby in the near future. I stated before that I will eventually be purchasing a used WRX as my track, autox and hobby car so there omre I put into the Yaris the longer it will take to get the WRX. I'd rather put it into a car that has a much higher potential to mod and is highly tuner friendly. I'd like to become more familiar with the tuning side of cars as that is an area I'm still trying to learn as much as possible.

The other main reason for not going the poggyback route it due to what fnkngrv said about the stock ECU being great at trying to ruin a nice tune. Any mod I do to my Yaris has to be working once done and stay working with minimal issues. I don't have the luxury to keep having to garage my car until I can get it on a dyno since it's my dependable DD.

I'm still very happy with the performance that has been squeezed out of the mods I've so far done. Once I get my lightweight CC flywheel and new clutch installed this summer I should be content with where the Yaris is at for the rest of its driven life.

The engine swap that Armstrong racing did is a great idea that is relatively cost effective (in relation to HP gained) and will keep the Yota reliability. That being said I'd still rather have a modded 1nz that I can drive hard and push to its limits, than a stock 2zr. I say "stock" 2zr simply because I wouldn't have to funds to mod another enigne for minimal HP gain if any so i'd be keeping it stock. It also still costs a good amount of money that I don't have right now.

I guess driving a car around that I've modded all on my own and that has taught me how cars work means a lot more to me than just a larger engine. I don't have a background of driving boosted/fast cars and I'm new to autox so for now the Yaris is more than enough car for me.
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