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© Peter Ogden, 2007

BikiROM install

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BikiROM As part of my modification "program", I decided to install a BikiROM daughterboard as one of my first major additions. This seems to be almost the opposite of current modification trends, which seems to be to only look at the ECU after modifying or upgrading almost everything else under the bonnet. This approach is fine if you intend to do all the upgrades in a short space of time and then have the ECU remapped to suit. More often though, major changes are made to the engine bay (larger turbo, boost increase and even cams) and the car is driven like this for many months or even years without touching the base tune. It is a testament to the modern ECU that it can cope relatively well with changes of this magnitude. In reality, though, many cases only realise about 80% of the possible performance increase, due to the ECU trying operate so far outside of its original parameters. Why spend thousands of dollars in upgrades to only get something less than the maximum performance that the upgrade could provide?

Another reason for upgrading the ECU first is that I would eventually like to go one step further and look into tuning the ECU myself. By using a laptop computer to data log several sensors (including the output of a wide-band oxygen sensor), it should be possible to develop a base map on the road with accuracy approaching that obtained by a full "dyno" tune. Others have done this with home made ECU's (see MegaSquirt), so I am sure it can be done with a modified Nissan unit. Once I am able to do this, I can then re-tune the ECU myself whenever I do a major modification to get maximum benefit from each upgrade (especially as I will likely be running as it is for quite some time before the next upgrade).

Although I used to work as an electronics technician and have some ability in the area, I haven't wielded a soldering iron for a living for more than 15 years. Nevertheless, the process to upgrade the standard ECU was quite straight forward. I feel confident that anyone capable of using a soldering iron should be able to install a BikiROM daughterboard without much difficulty.

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