ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Headlights to tailights and everything in between.

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Legacy777 » Mon Oct 24, 2016 6:06 pm

Yeah, keep us updated and if you can take screen shots of the ECU software that'd be nice to see. Can you open the files and work on them offline or does it have to be connected to the ECU?
Josh

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by mike-tracy » Tue Oct 25, 2016 12:21 am

The software does allow you to open the saved tunes offline, but I didn't see any to download on the interwebs. The ESL has a modified wrx "Z4" tune on it, I just haven't bothered putting it into my car since it's for graytop injectors and I have yellows. I'll be sure to save the basemap, and maybe upload it so others can play with the software.
1992 Legacy SS 5mt, build in progress
Josh Colombo wrote:
Mon Jan 14, 2002 10:23 am
Wait....I'm confused now.

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Alphius » Tue Oct 25, 2016 2:15 am

I'll hook you guys up after this Saturday. ;)

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Legacy777 » Tue Oct 25, 2016 5:54 pm

Cool!

It'd be nice to be able to install the software and check out the interface.
Josh

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by James614 » Wed Oct 26, 2016 10:17 pm

Seems like yesterday ESL was a quirky UK option nobody had solid info on. Great to see so many new options opening up for us!
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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by mike-tracy » Wed Oct 26, 2016 10:50 pm

I'd say the quirkiness remains. It's a little concerning to me that they don't have a public forum with people sharing tuning tips and tricks, and maps.

I think they need to hire a marketing/online media guy, and let the owner/brothers stick to what they like the most, the engineering side.
1992 Legacy SS 5mt, build in progress
Josh Colombo wrote:
Mon Jan 14, 2002 10:23 am
Wait....I'm confused now.

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Alphius » Thu Oct 27, 2016 12:21 am

Up until some point in the fairly recent past they only sold through distributors and tuning shops. They still seem to lack some of the things that we as end-users want to see in products like this. If the tuning process on Mike's car goes well, I'd consider buying a couple to keep and use as stock for tunes on local cars. I'd be interested to see if there's room in the market for an option that goes above and beyond what Rob does with a commensurate increase in cost. I am fully aware that the 22T and swapped 20G market is quite small at best. :P

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Pntaste4evr99 » Thu Oct 27, 2016 1:30 am

Like I said earlier, if Mikes goes well and your ok with messing around with it more, I'll be next in line. So now the market is up too two lol
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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Alphius » Sun Oct 30, 2016 6:00 pm

If anyone is interested in seeing the software and manual plus a stock ECU tune file, PM me.

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by mike-tracy » Sun Oct 30, 2016 7:49 pm

Good news and bad news about my tune. The bad news is my wideband 02 sensor was no good, so a complete tune couldn't be done. The good news is my car is now running a (very safe) ESL tune by Alphius! He tuned it to ~15psi on my VF23.

I switched from a td05 to a vf23, and (IMO) the vf23 is much better suited to the stock 22t engine. It is an excellent low to mid range turbo, with ridiculously fast spool. The td05 is a mid to high range turbo, much better for those with DOHC heads. Slower spooling but with a huge push higher in the RPM range.

We continued to use my robtune ignition converter, as the documentation on how to switch between COP and wasted spark isn't exactly clear on first glance. I'll find out more from ESL going forward.

I have a 2nd (used but known good) wideband o2 sensor, but Alphius is busy for the next few weekends, so a final tune is gonna be a minute.

So far, I am happy with the tune, and believe it is worth the money since I can mix up compression ratios, much bigger injectors, turbos, run mafless, etc down the road. The car is very smooth, and only a fine tune with a functional wideband 02 sensor is needed to get the car where I want it with the current engine and hardware.
1992 Legacy SS 5mt, build in progress
Josh Colombo wrote:
Mon Jan 14, 2002 10:23 am
Wait....I'm confused now.

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Legacy777 » Sun Oct 30, 2016 11:37 pm

Thanks for the update Mike!

Interesting comments about the TD05 since the TD05 on my setup boosts extremely quick.

Gabe,

I'll PM you as I'd like to take a look at the software & Manual.
Josh

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1990 Legacy (AWD, 6MT, & EJ22T Swap)
1997 Impreza OBS

If you need to get a hold of me please email me rather then pm

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Alphius » Sun Oct 30, 2016 11:55 pm

With more tuning we'll be able to improve spool even more, but we were seeing 15psi by around 2700RPM in third on the VF23. For the time being it's a stock fuel and timing map (Z4?) with a couple degrees pulled for safety in boost and WGDC dialed in. Without a wideband, I didn't want to make too many changes from the stock map.

Interesting to note, we were nearly maxing out the stock plastic MAF at higher RPM even with the smallish VF23. There may be benefits to rescaling for a larger MAF or going speed density with any more power. I can only imagine that 17-18psi on this turbo or a 16g especially runs out of MAF headroom. That'll cause the engine to progressively go leaner as it can't measure additional air above the top of the table. This is one of the big benefits to an ESL over a RobTune. We also maxed out the load axis of the fuel and timing tables at that boost level, but we can rescale those when we do a real tune. Didn't get a chance to worry about it last night as we had no wideband and it was getting late.

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Legacy777 » Sun Oct 30, 2016 11:58 pm

Yeah, maxing out the MAF's is the biggest issue. So unless you go to a newer MAF or speed density setup that'll probably be the nagging part keeping you back.

I checked out the software and it has a similar interface to Link in how you can create custom interface pages/tabs. It's not bad, but does the help file or a separate document give you inputfeedback on how to configure certain features?
Josh

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Alphius » Mon Oct 31, 2016 12:12 am

It's not very user friendly. The PDF is the only manual they have. The software feels like a half-done CS project.

The control scheme used by the ECU is very obviously a predecessor to the 02-05 WRX ECU, so it was very easy to understand the why and how to tuning the tables. It's missing some tables I'd like to see, but for the cost it's better than any similarly priced classic Subaru tuning options as far as being mostly plugnplay (20G ECU conversion notwithstanding) and feature-rich enough to make tuning for part swaps possible.

As opposed to the current cost-effective options being based on known "combos" of parts, I'm happy with it.

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by mike-tracy » Mon Oct 31, 2016 1:05 am

You think your td05 is fast Josh, this is much faster. ;) I drove it with my robtune briefly before swapping ecus, and it was td04 territory spool. As alphius mentioned, it's got room to improve too.
1992 Legacy SS 5mt, build in progress
Josh Colombo wrote:
Mon Jan 14, 2002 10:23 am
Wait....I'm confused now.

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Pntaste4evr99 » Mon Oct 31, 2016 5:04 am

So if one of the main factors is the Maf still limiting potential, what's this speed density thing? (I'm still a tuning newbie) And would a simple Maf change (Nissan one) and a good wideband setup really "unlock" more then what robs tune can? I'm just curious. I'll be the first to admit I don't know how to read the tuning and fuel tables. But love the idea of learning.
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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Alphius » Mon Oct 31, 2016 5:10 am

Speed density uses a MAP sensor and IAT to control fueling, so no MAF necessary.

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Pntaste4evr99 » Mon Oct 31, 2016 5:55 am

So I would assume I would have to create my own harness to those sensors to the ECU? Is it "easier" with this speed density setup from a tuning aspect? Or because the Maf has a ceiling? Can one install the oat sensor in say intercooler piping before the TB, or does it get a better reading in on of the intake runners? Sorry for the 20 questions, I geek out when I don't know stuff
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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Alphius » Mon Oct 31, 2016 3:17 pm

The MAP sensor is already there, on the passenger side strut tower. It can read up to 25PSI of boost I believe. I know the 97-98 EJ20 sensor can for sure. It can also be rescaled to use any aftermarket MAP Sensor as well such as a 2-bar, 3-bar, etc. The MAF signal input to the ECU becomes the IAT signal input. MAF can be removed. The whole point is to remove the need for the MAF which presents a ceiling on power and a minor intake restriction. The best place for the IAT is in the plenum post TB, but it can go in the intercooler line prior to TB as well with little difference.

No worries, the whole point of this thread is to answer questions. ;)

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Alphius » Mon Oct 31, 2016 3:25 pm

On a more technical "how does this work" note, the Subaru ECU has a "Load" variable that is calculated off of the MAF flow and a few other things. The fuel, timing, boost tables are scaled by load and RPM. So as the amount of load (airflow) changes, fuel and timing change as well. The MAFless operation in ESL uses the MAP sensor to detect manifold pressure and generates a load scalar from that which is then used by the tables. It doesn't change how the tables are read, just how the one axis is generated, so it still works like factory. The IAT compensates that as the air is more or less dense depending on temperature, so you have to inject more or less fuel to compensate for that density change.

Most aftermarket ECUs that are Speed Density don't use the arbitrary load scalar, they just directly use manifold pressure and RPM as the table axis.

Here's an infographic of how the ESL accomplishes MAF vs MAFless operation:

MAF-based load
Image

SD-based load
Image

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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by Pntaste4evr99 » Mon Oct 31, 2016 5:12 pm

Damn, thanks man, I'm eating this stuff up, thank you!
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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by mike-tracy » Mon Dec 05, 2016 6:33 am

Finally got a chance to retune successfully. I had removed the fender liners when I pre-face swapped the car, and it was allowing rain water to enter the stock airbox! This is with the factory snorkel inside the fender. Tonite it wasn't raining, and Alphius and I had a couple free hours to mess with the car.

It is now tuned to 17 PSI with the VF23, still using the MAF. Spool and midrange are excellent, though the stock 22t heads aren't letting the turbo reach it's potential up top. Either way, the car is fast and very responsive. I'm giving the ESL a big :smt055
1992 Legacy SS 5mt, build in progress
Josh Colombo wrote:
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Wait....I'm confused now.

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ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by bmxpunk » Mon Dec 05, 2016 4:03 pm

I have had the ESL in my car since 2012 although I swapped wiring to a 95 wrx harness.

It seems to work well enough. The factory MAP sensor for the early cars can ionly read boost to 16psi. The later cars are around mid 20's I believe. I have my car completely apart and Haines out of the car agin and I'm considering wiring in a gm 3bar sensor so I can have all the head room I'll ever need.

I have some issues with the ecu, the first being customer service. Andy sold it to me on the basis that it has Motorsport function capability with anti-lag, launch control, and flat foot shifting. All of which the version for 4-plug ecus does not have. I email Andy about every 6 months asking about it and he quit replying 2 years ago.



I'm looking into the new Haltech now and may be interested in parting with my ecu/ESL board/cable if anyone is interested. Pm me
Last edited by bmxpunk on Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by jefferson » Mon Dec 05, 2016 10:36 pm

I don't know if this might help or is relevant as far as the maf flow goes. I always understood that the plastic maf flowed better than the metal one on our cars and it plugs right in. The problem was the ecu wasn't set up to run it, but with this esl board I would think it pretty easy to adjust for it. That would take care of maxing the stock one out and be safer.
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Re: ESL Board for USDM 1st Gen Turbo Legacies

Post by mike-tracy » Mon Dec 05, 2016 11:20 pm

∆ since the ESL plugs into an ej20g ecu, it is setup for the plastic maf from the get go. But you can program it to run a different maf.
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Josh Colombo wrote:
Mon Jan 14, 2002 10:23 am
Wait....I'm confused now.

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