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Thread: Megaswitch v.megasquirttesting

  1. #1
    Super Moderator Six_Shooter's Avatar
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    Megaswitch v.megasquirttesting

    I'm starting a thread about Megasquirt since I now have a couple of them.

    A number of months ago I acquired an MS1 v3.0, and have been trying to get my hands on an MS2 daughter card. I do have a contact in the US that has one, but with the way exchange is right now, it's just more than I want to spend on it. Once the dollar gets closer to par, then I'll buy it, if he still has it.

    Anyway, I've noticed an MS2 on kijiji semi-local for a while now. I finally sent him an e-mail and we made a deal. I picked it up last night. It's an MS2 v3.0, that is set up for a Miata and has a custom Miata adapter plug 'n' play box, which I don't plan to use, but is rather interesting in itself.

    Now my plan is to use this in my 1973 Datsun 240Z that has a turbo LX9 swap (3.5L from a 2006 Pontiac G6), and is currently running off a Delco 1227749 using $59 (code59.org). It runs quite well with the current set-up, I've just wanted to play with a Megasquirt for a long time. There were just some features it lacks that kept me from getting one, at least at new full price. I got a couple pretty decent deals between the 2 that I have now.

    Anyway I plan to document the switch over and what challenges come up along with solutions. I also plan to make comparisons between the MS2 and the '7749 with $59, I may even compare it to another ECU I have access to, if I find time (Haltec Platinum 1000).

    I'm going to start with pictures.

    Both units, along with the Miata adapter, which I may show off in a separate post, if there's interest.


    Both units with the covers pulled off. The extra circuit on the left MS (MS2) is for some Miata specific need, that actually increases the frequency of the PWM signal.
    MS2 on the left and MS1 on the right.


    Close up of the Miata prepped unit. (There's more jumpers on the bottom)


    Close up of MS1 unit


    Backside of the MS1 board


    Comparison of MS2 daughter card (left) and MS1 CPU (right)


    Underside of the CPUs
    Last edited by Six_Shooter; 08-20-2016 at 01:25 AM.
    The man who says something is impossible, is usually interrupted by the man doing it.

  2. #2
    Fuel Injected! Roadknee's Avatar
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    I've been interested in MS for a while too. Look forward to this thread.
    1995 K1500, Stock LO5, 4L60e, 3.73 gears, 265/75-16 tires, L&L Products Ultra-flow headers into 2-1/2" Y-pipe and 3" single exhaust

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Six_Shooter's Avatar
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    Initial notes and plans:

    After doing some initial research, I'm going to use the MS1 unit, with the MS2 daughter card installed, effectively converting it to an MS2 v3.0 unit. I have a few reasons for this:
    -This particular unit has the hall effect and VR circuitry already installed, which is needed for the ignition set-up on my car
    -I want to look closer at the Miata prepped unit and research it without disturbing it right now, because I like to know stuff.
    -If someone comes along that needs the Miata prepped stuff and adapter then it will already be good for them and no need to add it all back in.
    -Using the basic unit is closer to how most people would receive an MS, or if they had an MS1 and want to upgrade this information could prove to be helpful.

    One big thing that is of note is that the MS2 is capable of running a stepper motor IAC, which most GM systems use. This requires a 12V feed to the MS daughter card, for the stepper motor driver. (Labeled UDN2916 in the below diagram).



    The MS1 does not require a 12V feed and if the MS2 12V feed modification is made then an MS1 CPU installed it will damage the MS1 CPU. the modification is running a jumper lead to pin 16 of the 40 pin main CPU socket. Luckily on the v3.0 board this has been thought of an the jumper that is needed is very short between a hole labeled JS9 and another hole nearby labeled S12C.

    Here are the two points that need to be connected (Underside of the board):


    And relative to the rest of the board:
    Last edited by Six_Shooter; 08-20-2016 at 01:29 AM.
    The man who says something is impossible, is usually interrupted by the man doing it.

  4. #4
    Fuel Injected!
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    I've had an MS2 sitting in my shop for a few years now. Someday I need to find a good project for it. Keep us updated on your progress!
    1973 K-5 Blazer, TBI 350, TH400, 1 ton axles & 38" SSRs'
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  5. #5
    Coool, I have a customer with a Ford 460 that is getting swapped to MicroSquirt this winter. It should be fun, no stepper control needed and its already batch fire.

    Thanks for posting this up.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator Six_Shooter's Avatar
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    I've been doing a lot of reading about options and such for the MS over the last couple of days, and it seems prudent to simply get the MS connected to and running the engine in a very basic set-up, with no options other than efan, since I have no other easy way to control it. Then after I have proofed out the trigger in, then move on to adding options, such as boost control, shift light, etc.

    I do have both a stimulator and a JimStim (I've been using the JimStim for years with Delco ECMs), so I can do bench testing, but in car testing could come up with different results.

    The really confusing part at this point is what code version to use, B&G code or MSExtra. I'm leaning towards the Extra code because it seems quite popular and well supported.

    There seems to be some ignition settings that change or get inverted between the B&G code and MSExtra, that causes people to have issues, if they switch between them.

    I was thinking about installing a jumper for the 12V feed to the MS2 daughter card, in case I wanted re-install the MS1 CPU, but the more I read about the limitations of MS1, I don't think I will be, at least not in an in car situation, where I wouldn't be able to easily use a soldering iron to remove the jumper.

    I am considering using the MS1 on another project that either doesn't require an IAC or I could adapt a PWM type easily. I was originally considering using a '7730 for that project and still am, but the Alpha-N capabilities of the MS might make it easier to run.

    I'm hoping to get to the necessary board mods tonight or early this week, to test in car, but will need to build an adapter harness as well, since I want to be able to easily swap between the '7749/$59 and the MS2.

    I am intrigued by mention of 6 cyl sequential COP, using MS2.... I can see very quickly needing to upgrade to MS3, just to get more inputs and outputs to use some of the additional features. lol
    The man who says something is impossible, is usually interrupted by the man doing it.

  7. #7
    Fuel Injected!
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    To be honest, there's nothing going on in your setup that MS1 can't handle except the stepper idle control. That said, MS2Extra is the best supported system and can do everything MS3 can do with added on hardware, but it gets messy fast. If you are wanting to go full sequential don't even mess with an MS2, just make the jump now. Nothing interchanges between them as far as wiring or coding.

    There are a LOT of errors in the documentation you find online-use only the official MSExtra documentation. Some of the old wiring diagrams and methods result in unusable noise problems-and MS2 is MUCH more sensitive to noise than MS1 was. Good grounding practices are not enough in every case, the biggest noise problems are from using low-z injectors and the way the traces are routed on the PCB. Hopefully you won't have issues with yours.

    The standard MS2 code does not support every type of trigger wheel, nor does it have a really good handle on warmup control-MS2Extra does it much better.

  8. #8
    Super Moderator Six_Shooter's Avatar
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    Yes, IAC is very important to me, which is why I never even bothered with the MS1, and I didn't want to try and adapt some other IAC to it, since I knew I wouldn't stay with the MS1 anyway. I'm not even planning to keep the MS2 on there, it's simply to get more hands on with MS, and get to know the any quirks. Unless I find some glaring limitation of the Delco ECM, the '7749 will be the go to ECM in my car, the MS install is temporary.

    I'm not planning on using low-Z injectors and if I ever do, I will build an external driver circuit anyway.
    The man who says something is impossible, is usually interrupted by the man doing it.

  9. #9
    Fuel Injected!
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    I never though some MS hardware would make it to your desk Chris, let alone your car, that's awesome

    For having run MS1 and MS2 and MS3 for some time, I would personally go with MS3 right away but just because I like to have the most fancy stuff :P Some features are quite interesting tho (AFR safety, SD card data logging are probably my two favorites that "can't" be done on MS2). The gap between MS1 and MS2 is a lot bigger than MS2 and MS3 in my opinion tho. MS3 does have the MS3x that make it easy to do all sort of cool thing (like running SFI).

    Anyway, if you have any questions, you know where to find me :) I saw you were hesitating between B&G code and extra firmware. It's not even a question, go with the Extra code. msefi.com vs msextra.com is the biggest non sense ever but just forget about msefi.com, just use msextra.com. Also, the documentation got A LOT better in the last year (for msextra).

    I highly doubt you will go back to your delco ECM but I guess we'll see!
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  10. #10
    Super Moderator Six_Shooter's Avatar
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    3400ttZ; I've been following MS since it was called EFI-332, which fizzled out and some of the people involved there developed the MS1 and then you know the rest. There were just a lot of problems and limitations of the early MS, that kept me from trying it. Even the MS2 doesn't have some features that I would like, but the MS2 use is just for the hands on stuff.

    Anyway, I haven't done a lot lot with this, been busy with some other things. I did decide to install a jumper for the 12V feed to the CPU/daughter board so I can do easy swaps on the bench for comparing MS1 to MS2. I also added the IAC jumpers.

    I still need to set up the E-fan and boost control outputs, along with verifying the ignition circuits are correct for the ignition I will be using. I also need to set it up to work with a friend's car that I want to test this on, that is very different from my car...





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  11. #11
    Super Moderator Six_Shooter's Avatar
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    Well, it seems I REALLY need to update this.

    No I don't have the MSII in the car yet, but I am getting closer to getting to that point. School and life has delayed getting as far as I would have liked by now.

    I do have updates though.

    I'll start with something that doesn't change functionality of running the engine in the slightest but will will with a future modification that I will get to later. That is socketing the MAX232 IC (U6). When I got this board the MAX232 IC was soldered directly to the board, and I have plans to change the way this circuit functions so I figured I'd install a socket to make that later modification easier.

    U6 removed:


    U6 socket:


    Max232 in the socket:


    After doing this I then moved onto the ignition connections. I had to sort through a bunch of pages of the MSExtra manual to weed out what I needed to do. I have not testing this in the car yet, but bench testing shows that it should be good.

    Anyway, I started the TSEL jumper, and it gets put between VROUT and TSEL. This is connecting the VR conditioning circuitry to the Tach in signal of the MS CPU.


    I then moved to the TACHSELECT jumper. This gets connected to the VRIN pin to pass the incoming RPM signal to the VR conditioning circuitry.


    So at this point a signal, which will be the EST signal from the GM ignition module can be run into the MS CPU, but we need a way to actually control timing, so there's a couple outputs that need to be created, or modified using some existing circuitry on the board.
    This is where D14 and D16 and related circuitry gets modified.
    I started with the IGN output, this will be the ESC signal that connects to the ICM and gives the ICM the needed timing signal info.
    I didn't like the way the manual described the modification, adding another resistor on top of what was there, and after drawing out both the original circuit for D14 and the new modified circuit and convincing myself I was correct, I removed R24 to replace it a 1K ohm resistor, since the original R24 a 330 ohm resistor will become superfluous. This location was perfect for putting in the new value of resistor. I also hate the bodged look, so I try really hard to make the modifications look like they were not afterthoughts. Anyway, after replacing the resistor I then jumpered the two pins that the LED was originally attached to, to create a point that I can attach a wire to. This jumper is on the bottom of the board, since the other end of the jumperpoint was easiet to access from the bottom and I am trying to keep as many jumper wires on the bottom as I can.


    I then attached a jumper from the loop I created and attached the other end to the IGN point. This allows the new trigger circuit to actually be passed out through the DB37 connector.


    Almost there for ignition and timing control, one more circuit to modify, this time D16. Once again I removed the 330 ohm resistor at R28 and replaced it with a 1K ohm resistor, and again I created a jumper between the LED pins to attach a wire to, this time on the top, since the SPR3 hole is easiest accessed from the top, due to the MAP sensor being mounted on the bottom of the board at this location.


    And now, if everything went according to plan, tach signal in timing control should be taken care of.
    Last edited by Six_Shooter; 11-08-2015 at 02:05 AM.
    The man who says something is impossible, is usually interrupted by the man doing it.

  12. #12
    Super Moderator Six_Shooter's Avatar
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    I then turned my attention to the fuel pump circuit. I don't like how the MS uses a negative trigger for the fuel pump relay, a positive trigger was needed anyway, because of the way GM controls the fuel pump relay. Yes a simple relay in the adapter harness would have been fine to invert the signal, but a relay to simply control a relay just seemed overkill to me, even using a small signal relay.

    So I decided I would modify the onboard circuit, because I could and I would be applying some things I've learned in school, so win...win?

    Anyway. I removed transistors Q2 and Q19, these are both part of the fuel pump relay control circuit. Q2 is what actually controls the output, Q19 is there for over current protection, in case too much current is pulled through the fuel pump control pin. I also removed R40 and D4. R16 is fine and at 1K is perfect for the modified circuit anyway. R40 gets replaced with a 1K ohm resistor, D4 I replaced with a 1N4001.

    I built the new circuit on a breadboard initially to test before building it in the MS, once tested and verified, I built the circuit in the proto area on the MS V3.0 board. It consists of two transistors, in my case I used a 2N3904 and a PN200, since I had them on hand. If you wanted the ZTX450 (removed from Q2) could be used in place of the 2N3904, but a PNP transistor will be needed for the final output control, the PN200 in my case. I chose this one because it was in a TO-92 case and it was the highest current rated I had on hand without going to a larger packaged device. The Ic of this transistor is -500mA, which is about 300mA more than the relay it will be controlling so I think this is a good match, if not, I'll use something else, so far it's tested well though.

    I will get the final circuit posted for anyone interested, once I make one small addition.

    Here are some pictures.

    The slighter darker green wire in the middle of the board is the wire that will feed 12V out to the fuel pump relay:


    I picked up the 12V feed for the circuit from the 12V pin one the banded side of D9, which is also attached to the 12V in of the 5V regulator. There are several other points that could be used, this one was just close by.


    I then attached the other two jumpers from the Q2 location to control the circuit, base of Q2 going to the base of the 2N3904, the The emitter pin of Q2 to the emitter of the 2N3904. The collector of the 2N3904 is then attached to the base of the PN200. I want to add a pull-up resistor to this circuit to make sure that the circuit stays powered down when it's supposed to be.


    And the top side of the board showing the two existing transistors.


    I have more done, but I think I'll wait until tomorrow to post any more.
    Last edited by Six_Shooter; 11-08-2015 at 02:13 AM.
    The man who says something is impossible, is usually interrupted by the man doing it.

  13. #13
    Super Moderator Six_Shooter's Avatar
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    I added the boost control circuit to the MS.

    Typically the instructions suggest using jumper wires directly to the transistor or MOSFET being used, then drilling a hole in the case to mount the device. As you can imagine if you've been following along this isn't my style, so I looked over the board and realized that I'm not using the high current coil driver (Q16), and probably never will, since I don't plan on using any single coil ignition systems. The pads for this driver are also isolated from other circuits, so it's easy to use any TO-220 packaged device. So I removed that driver and replaced it with a MOSFET, an IRFZ44 following the Diyautotune boost control circuit diagram, I added a jumper between the drain (IGNBTOUT) of the MOSFET to the SPR4 output pin. The source pin that comes out at R43 and a simple jumper was added here to the other side of the R43 footprint, this provided a ground source.



    To control the MOSFET I used the JS11. The gate circuit needs two resistors, one that is in series and one that attaches to ground. For the one that pulls down to ground I used the R57 location for the 10k ohm resistor, and installed the 100 ohm resistor in the proto area. I hate resistors floating around, or inline in jumper wires. It also makes it easier to change the values if I ever need to when they are soldered to the board and easily seen like this.



    Anyway a couple jumpers later and the boost control hardware is installed. The grey/yellow wires in the picture below:


    And the circuit I'm using:
    The man who says something is impossible, is usually interrupted by the man doing it.

  14. #14
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    no flyback diode? I didn't think I needed one to control an EGR solenoid, I burnt my fingertip when I touched the FET controlling it.
    1995 Chevrolet Monte Carlo LS 3100 + 4T60E


  15. #15
    Super Moderator Six_Shooter's Avatar
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    There is an internal diode of the IRFZ44, that I believe will act like a flyback diode. If not, no big deal, I'll add one if the IRFZ44 ever fails. Also the FET getting warm is not really to do with the precense of a flyback diode or not, but to do with the current flowing through it. The flyback diode only protects against those large voltage spikes that occur when a coil is switched off and causes the spike to dissipate within the coil/device itself.
    The man who says something is impossible, is usually interrupted by the man doing it.

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