Well some of you saw that I was working deals with Matt to pick up his 92 Passat Syncro Wagon with a 1.8t swap. We ended up trading cars and I had to give up a little cash on my end, but one of the big issues was the car was the engine management. So this is the story of my new daily/winter machine/soccer mom wagon
Specs when I got it:
AEB 1.8t, Unitronics BT chip (crap!)-Now on MS2 v3 with all the goodies!
T3/T4 50 trim stage III wheel with the 360 deg. thrust bearing upgrade. .48 A/R on the turbine side
TiAL 40mm wastegate-14.7psi spring
Chinese knockoff Tial blow off
CTS Turbo semi-equal length turbo manifold
Custom 3" DP (nice), to shoddy 3" straight section to shoddy bmw rear exhaust-sounds pretty sweet though!
BBM Fuel rail
Walbro 255H in-line fuel pump in the bay
Early on it its life, the wagon received a 1.8t swap and was driven for a bit with the stock setup from a passat (AEB engine). The next owner nutted up and put a real turbo on it, but used some cheap ebay manifold and some shady welding and some even shadier wiring (honestly though, not sure who of the early builders was responsible for the wiring...). The car was then traded to Vedran aka Valvecovergasket who had the car for a year or so, and without any time, drove it as is until Matt aka Rollercoasterracer bought the car and had it shipped to alaska! Matt also due to lack of time etc had a shop up in AK fix one of the shoddy exhaust pieces (down pipe and wastegate pipe iirc), but again was fixed in a not so awsome manor. Without much for good options in AK, he held off until he was back in WA to have a proper DP and such fabbed up by a local shop (which slips my head at the moment). Matt decided he wanted to not put so many miles on such a rare car, and such gave me a shout about my mk2 that I have been daily driving for the past 4 years. We struck a deal and this is where I come in
So at this point, the car had been taken into Fine Tuning to diagnose a overly rich running condition. After finding out the ECU was likely bad and needing replacement, and finding out that Unitronics wanted $300 to diagnose the ecu, Matt contacted Vedran about getting the car on some proper management to solve its issues. Matt, being the super kind fellow he is, allowed me to strike a deal without that done, and do the work myself. Vedran an I hatched a plan to knock the swap out in a weekend, Matt was good with it, so it was game on. I enlisted the help of another PNW fab master/squirt guru to create what I like to call, The Dream Team.
Jake came over friday night, and we headed to Bellingham early in the AM, hitting veds shop about 11am. Matt came through about noon to work out the final details and get some money, and we set to work about 1 in the afternoon. This is about 20min into it...
Stock harness out
This is when we discovered that whoever built the car origionally used a method that we have now named "the f*ck it and tuck it" method. Which basically entails do a really horrid job, then stash everything so you can't see it...
More wires coming out..
Most of the stock crap wiring had been pulled at this point
Ved, the mad scientist building my frankenstein MS2 ecu. There is almost the limit of stuff going on in this ecu Stock coil on plug, running wasted spark, boost control, pwm idle control, wideband control, on top of the standard ms2 v3 features we have all come to know and love!
Jake (TURBOCADDY of JRM Fabrication) and ved working through a little wiring while I enjoy a beverage and a few minutes off my feet, shortly after this, the car started on the megasquirt. This was about 12am saturday (well technically sunday morning)
More of the wires that got removed, most of these had no purpose, or were added in such a manor that a fire was immenent...Jake spent most of saturday sorted this mess out while I built the new squirt harness. Jake is the man, I can't thank him enough for tackling this headache!
Jake swapped valve cover gaskets for me while I prepped and finalized the new megasquirt harness for install sunday morning
Ved hooking up the exciter wire that had fallen off
This is where I stopped snapping cell phone pics, the car had run, but poorly the night before, and we all assumed it was due to not have anything set in the ecu. Well we found that was not the case, and spent a few hours troubleshooting. The end result was that we had used the wrong diagram (which was confusing at best) and had 2 wires on the crank trigger backwards. Once that was fixed, the car roared to life!! It was about 6pm on sunday by that point, we took a break and grabbed some pizza and had a short breather.
We also found, just before taking off for a tune, that one of the coil drivers was over heating and causing it to shut down. Thus, the car only ran on 3 cylinders...back in the shop! A little cooling was hatched, and off we went, 45min tuning cruise and the car was running very well.
Jake and I packed up, cleaned up, hugged it out with ved and made the 160mi trip back to my house. The Passat drove flawlessly (less the driver shutting us down once), and if the gas guage is accurate, is seeing around 30mpg when I am not romping on it in boost I hope you enjoyed the tail of my weekend as much as I enjoyed typing it out and re-living the ride...
I cannot thank Jake or Vedran enough, they both dedicated long hours to helping me get this thing up and running in less than 2 days. There is no way I could have tackled this job alone and got it done this quickly. I hope the beer and pizza was enough guys!
Ved has a real camera and took much better pics, im sure he will upload them when he can