In what order did you purchase stage1-2 mods?
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This is a discussion on In what order did you purchase stage1-2 mods? within the Engine Modifications forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Is there an optimal route? Is there a specific order in which you bought? I decided to get my tune ...

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    Registered User Cyoplasm's Avatar
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    In what order did you purchase stage1-2 mods?

    Is there an optimal route?
    Is there a specific order in which you bought?

    I decided to get my tune from a guy who charges $500 up front for lifetime tunes, first tune free, and $50 per hour labor after that for each visit.
    So with that in mind, yes I know buying everything all at once would be the most optimal, but I am on a budget.
    Not too strict, but I'd like to buy a major component one at time.

    Depending on who you ask, I've heard the intake is safe without a tune but isn't going to make gains obv, so I figured this was probably the first engine mod I'd do with the free tune.

    Then, there's the AP, Boost controller, and DP. That right there shipped is like $1500 but I feel like without all of them at once it's a waste of money for tunes.
    What do you guys recommend if at all...


    Also, anyone running at least stage 1 with factory catback? Safe? Restricted flow?
    PS: without doing much research, why would my tuner advise me to purchase a boost controller in addition to the AP? Doesn't the AP cover that? Noob here.
    Thanks!
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    Registered User WRX-maniac's Avatar
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    Hey, Let me help you out a bit. First off, no..... If you put any intake on our cars, they must be tuned for! Secondly, if you have a tuner, why do you need an accessport? In all honesty an accessport is all you really need in order to go stage 1 or 2. Yes, a pro-tune will always be better than an off the shelf (OTS) map. but at stage 2 levels really isnt neccesary. Many people will do their upgrades in this way. Go stage 1 first: AEM cold air intake, cobb accessport, flash the stage 1 map for the AEM intake and whatever fuel you use. (i.e. 91 or 93 octane) Then whenever money allows, get the downpipe WITH a high flow cat and a catback if you wish to do a true full turbo back exhaust. Going this route, you will not really need any means of boost control. Now, what your tuner may be talking about is that if you planned on going with a catless downpipe, sometimes they can cause boost creep. An electronic boost control solenoid can help tune that out a bit.


    Again though, do not put an intake on your car without a tune!!!!!
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    Registered User Cyoplasm's Avatar
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    Thx, like I said, I heard various arguments and figured the safe route would be to use my first free tune when I installed the intake. I didn't want to risk it and not make any power gains by skipping on the tune.

    So AP and tune on 91 is all you need for it to be considered "stage 1"
    The separation, is in the preparation.-Russell C Wilson-

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    Village Idiot McBill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyoplasm View Post
    Thx, like I said, I heard various arguments and figured the safe route would be to use my first free tune when I installed the intake. I didn't want to risk it and not make any power gains by skipping on the tune.

    So AP and tune on 91 is all you need for it to be considered "stage 1"
    It's not the fact that you are skipping on power gains, its the fact that the MAF scaling is different with any aftermarket intake you can put on your year of wrx. Thus meaning that the ECU is not reading the air properly and this leads to the car running an improper A/F ratio. Which can lead to a catastrophic engine failure. In short, if you pretty much do any engine mod to these cars, without a tune, you run a high risk of blowing up your engine. In some cases, very quickly.

    EDIT: I would also like to point out that whoever told you that intakes don't need tunes on these cars couldn't be more wrong and obviously have no idea what they are talking about.
    Last edited by McBill; 08-01-2014 at 06:25 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by McBill View Post
    EDIT: I would also like to point out that whoever told you that intakes don't need tunes on these cars couldn't be more wrong and obviously have no idea what they are talking about.
    Quoted for truth. We no longer have the factory tuned pig rich turbo cars of yesteryear that are easy to "hack" so to speak.

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    The Guy On The Couch TownLine500's Avatar
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    McBill is 100% correct. You Absolutely have to have a tune with intake. I hope the guy that told you intakes don't need a tune, is not the guy who's gonna do your tuning.
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    MAINEiac 11blackSTi's Avatar
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    Stage 1 - just a tune. You can either do this using the access port using COBB off the shelf maps, or use a tactrix cable and a lap top and do an open source tune. You can add a CAI or a short ram intake, but as has been mentioned, the intake must be tuned for on the newer generation WRX's. If you use COBB off the shelf tunes (maps), then follow the map notes to a T. They only have tunes for the AEM cold air intake and COBB short ram intake. Of course you can get a pro-tune at these levels, but not worth the money unless you plan on staying here (just my opinion) - Another option is always to get an "e-tune," which is a professional tune in a way, but it is done over the internet and is not as personalized (for example, Perrin did an e-tune for me for the Perrin intake - they send you a base map, then revise the map based on your data-logs - this does cost money). And of course, you should perform data-logging to ensure your car took the map ok and there are no issues.

    Stage 2 - A down pipe and a tune. Again, you can use the access port with the off the shelf maps, but make sure and follow the map notes. For example, if you only have 91 octane available in your area, then use the 91 stage 2 map (and again if you have the intake there are tunes for the respective intakes). You can also go this route using the tactrix cable and laptop for an open source tune. As with the stage 1 tune, you could get a pro-tune here if you feel like this is where you want to stop, but I still feel it may not be worth it if you car took the off the shelf (OTS) map ok...You MUST data-log to confirm this.

    Using a catted down pipe will make you less prone to boost creep, but this is a mechanical issue, that cannot be tuned out.

    Not sure what your tuner was talking about regarding the boost controller. If he was talking about a manual boost controller, then it is definitely not needed. If he was talking about a new solenoid (EBCS - electronic boost control solenoid), then it doesn't hurt, but it is not really necessary up to stage 2 levels if your solenoid is working properly.

    I can't stress enough how important data-logging and then analyzing the logs is. This will help you recognize any issues and take corrective action. If you can't read the data-logs, post them here. There are lots of folks that are familiar and will help you out.

    If the tuner is the one that told you that you don't need a tune for an intake, and to get a "boost controller" at stage 1, then i would consider talking to another tuner.

    Another side note...A professional tune is always going to give you better results as it is specific to your car. The only reason I say it might not be worth it at these levels is that it is expensive and if you plan on modding further, then it will need to be re-tuned (more money).
    Last edited by 11blackSTi; 08-01-2014 at 06:51 PM.

  9. #8
    Registered User Cyoplasm's Avatar
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    No, the tuner didn't tell me this. It was a couple irrelevant people and it popped up at a hard park circle jerk a about a month back. I'm extremely new to this and so far I've been taking the advice on suspension upgrades before power. This is the first I've looked into it, and am eager to learn. I was raised around old school, so this tuning is interesting to say the least. Annoying... but I see it's benefits when comparing. I got so much to learn. I won't buy until I am confident.

    I think I'm just going to wait on intake until after stage 2.
    Catless DP+ Q300
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    Can you track boost creep with the AP? Or is it just a random uncommon "boosting" during casual daily driving?
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    Village Idiot McBill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyoplasm View Post
    No, the tuner didn't tell me this. It was a couple irrelevant people and it popped up at a hard park circle jerk a about a month back. I'm extremely new to this and so far I've been taking the advice on suspension upgrades before power. This is the first I've looked into it, and am eager to learn. I was raised around old school, so this tuning is interesting to say the least. Annoying... but I see it's benefits when comparing. I got so much to learn. I won't buy until I am confident.

    I think I'm just going to wait on intake until after stage 2.
    Catless DP+ Q300
    Cobb AP

    Can you track boost creep with the AP? Or is it just a random uncommon "boosting" during casual daily driving?
    You can track boost creep with anything. The AP has a boost gauge that taps from your computer. Since you are new at this, I will give you the boost creep rundown here.

    For starters, I'm not sure if Cobb makes any MAP's for catless downpipes. You would have to read the MAP notes and see what exactly it calls for, and whatever you do, stick to EXACTLY what the MAP notes tell you.

    On to boost creep. This is a fairly simple explanation. First off, boost creep is fairly common in the 2.5L engines for whatever reason. Anyhow, on to the nitty gritty. Boost Creep happens when there are too much exhaust gasses rolling through the turbo making boost. What happens is that even when the waste gate is as open as it can be, it's still not diverting enough gasses to assure the turbo isn't hitting boost levels over the target. So then the turbo just keeps building more and more boost until you redline. This can be quite harmful to the engine as it could be seeing boost pressures well above what the map knows it's supposed to be getting. And in extreme cases, this can trigger a fuel cut or a shutoff.

    Now, some people claim that their tuners say you can "tune out" boost creep. That's not entirely true. It depends on how much creep you are gettting. You could be over boosting by only 1-2 PSI or you could be hitting a max boost level of 25 PSI. I think what the tuners try to do by saying this is that they could possibly try to get rid of it by increasing your boost levels, but you can only safely do that so much. Otherwise the only TRUE solution to boost creep is purchasing a larger wastegate. In the case for our cars it would be an external one.

    Finally, in your analysis this is where you figure out if it's worth it or not. You could go the catless route and save a couple hundred dollars now. But you would have a pretty decent possibility of needing to get an external wastegate setup, which, will be an additional $700 or so. Or, you could go the safe rout and get a catted DP instead, spend the extra $200 now, and not worry about the possibility of having to buy an EWG setup. In the end it is your choice. But I tell EVERYONE that is in your situation to get a catted DP because frankly that's a lot of money spent on a item (EWG) that really serves you no current benefit other than to solve your boost creep problem.

    There is my $0.02

    I hope this was helpful.


    Edit: Let me also ask you, what is your reasoning in getting a catless DP over a catted DP?
    Last edited by McBill; 08-08-2014 at 01:30 PM. Reason: There Their They're
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    Registered User Cyoplasm's Avatar
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    Ok and other than a catted DP and boost control solenoid there aren't many ways to prevent this better?
    What is the purpose of the bung on a ASAP and why does Invidia make a 2 bung?
    Sorry, super noob.
    The separation, is in the preparation.-Russell C Wilson-

  12. #11
    Registered User Cyoplasm's Avatar
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    Nvm disregard. I see the wastegate comment.
    The separation, is in the preparation.-Russell C Wilson-

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    Registered User Cyoplasm's Avatar
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    My reasoning for catless is the increased exhaust flow when compared to catted. In Az I don't have as restricted emissions on these newer cars. All I have to pass is a visual to which I would just slap the OEM DP back on.
    The separation, is in the preparation.-Russell C Wilson-

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    Village Idiot McBill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyoplasm View Post
    Ok and other than a catted DP and boost control solenoid there aren't many ways to prevent this better?
    What is the purpose of the bung on a ASAP and why does Invidia make a 2 bung?
    Sorry, super noob.
    I saw your second post but I wanted to clarify either way. An EBCS will not fix boost creep. It has nothing to do with the EBCS, only the systems ability (or lack there of) to divert enough of the exhaust through the stock internal wastegate. Now, the extra bung would be for you to install a wideband O2 sensor. This is for an Air/Fuel ratio gauge. I would recommend getting the extra bung as you can just plug it until you get a gauge. And if you don't get one then no worries.

    Now, I would recommend you read the thread I'm linking below to learn how the boost control system and wastegate works.

    WTF Tuning Part 2: The Turbocharger 101 & Basic Boost Control


    Quote Originally Posted by Cyoplasm View Post
    My reasoning for catless is the increased exhaust flow when compared to catted. In Az I don't have as restricted emissions on these newer cars. All I have to pass is a visual to which I would just slap the OEM DP back on.
    At these lower stages, increased exhaust flow will not do you much. When you get to levels that increased exhaust flow is necessary (well beyond basic stage 2) you will have to get a catless DP and external wastegate either way. But from the sounds of your build plans, that is well out of the boundaries you are looking for at the moment.
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    Registered User Cyoplasm's Avatar
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    Thx boss. Directv dude coming by soon. I'll read after he leaves.
    The separation, is in the preparation.-Russell C Wilson-

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    Moderator YBNormal07's Avatar
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    Just 2 quick recomendations:
    1. If you aren't going for really high HP gains way down the road, go with an HF catted dp. It will resolve any boost creep issues and you won't have to "slap" in the stock dp for inspections (ugh..slapping in a dp is duh suckage).
    2. Buy used dp and up. If you can find them. These are durable products and are hard to mess up. As long as the flanges are not warped, you typically won't find issues with them and you will save TONS of dough. Ditto for the Cobb AP.
    Good luck!
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