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    Question What's your opinion of the "high-end" German DIESEL tuning boxes? Are they worth the money?

    We all know that BMS has a very affordable and workable JBD for BMW diesels. My feeling is that even though Schnitzer, Hartge, Kelleners Sport, and Steinbauer Performance charge a lot more for their boxes, that there is real value there. It's not just a rip-off where you're getting just what a $279 box can do while paying 5x more (15x in the case of Schnitzer, but you get a 2-year warranty on the engine).

    If you look at the installation schematics for the German boxes vs. all of the less expensive brands you see a completely different set-up, even though it's still plug-n-play. The German boxes plug directly into the injectors and the exhaust temperature sensor, not just the CR pressure and boost sensors. There's a helluva lot more information flowing between the ECU and the tuning box in the more expensive set-up. For one thing, that means a much more accurate and responsive ability to manipulate main injection duration making it unnecessary to fool around with increasing CR pressure or pre- and post-injection timing.

    To me, that surplus of information means safer and smoother acceleration, less stress on engine components and the DPF, and less emissions. So if you can afford it, it's worth the extra money IMO.

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    Have you driven a JBD'ed 335? its pretty entertaining for such a small amount of money.

    Whats the failure rate of components of a JBD vs. stock? I don't know of any personally. anyone?

    I'd love to see more power come out of the diesels- in terms of getting rid of the eurea/EGR/cat stuff to see what it will do when it can breathe.
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    Besides accelerated engine wear another concern I've seen mentioned from users of inexpensive boxes (and inexpensive ECUs for that matter) is the quality of how the power is delivered throughout the power band.

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    What accelerated engine wear? do you have examples it was directly related to the tuner/box/whatever? I just hate hearsay and nothing standing behind it, I hope you understand.

    and, like I said- have you driven one? feels pretty dang good if you ask me.


    Want to see a power delivery issue? Come drive my tuned superduty lol..... nothing nothing nothing nothing WHAM tire smoke Click here to enlarge
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by alex@ABRhouston Click here to enlarge
    What accelerated engine wear? do you have examples it was directly related to the tuner/box/whatever? I just hate hearsay and nothing standing behind it, I hope you understand.

    and, like I said- have you driven one? feels pretty dang good if you ask me.


    Want to see a power delivery issue? Come drive my tuned superduty lol..... nothing nothing nothing nothing WHAM tire smoke Click here to enlarge
    Lol, my brother-in-law's Super Duty is the same way, I guess that's just the way they are. He's running some pretty advanced tuning too and with a custom tune from a diesel shop. I like the super duty's, but my next truck will be a Duramax
    2009 335i coupe back to stock...for now

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    I WILL NOT drive an IFS 4x4 truck. JUNK suspension. Chevy got stupid and thinks its a great idea. Dodge and Ford still have their minds straight.
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by alexABRhouston Click here to enlarge
    What accelerated engine wear? do you have examples it was directly related to the tuner/box/whatever? I just hate hearsay and nothing standing behind it, I hope you understand.

    and, like I said- have you driven one? feels pretty dang good if you ask me.
    I do understand, and I know how it feels. But not everybody is totally thrilled with how the power is delivered in terms of smoothness of acceleration all along the power band.

    I'll admit that my question is based more on theoretical concerns than actual examples. But I have read many such concerns expressed by people more knowledgeable than me along the same lines--and some of them are linked to actual engine problems with the less expensive boxes--NOT necessarily JBD. There is no data base around that collects and verifies these kind of events. As I've already said, I'm sure the JBD is quite competent. My question still is: Do you think you get added value for the extra money spent on the more expensive TBs? I'm guessing that the majority opinion around here is no. I'm not trying to put BMS down in any way.

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    Moved this to BMW Diesel.
    @Terry@BMS

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by stevehecht Click here to enlarge
    We all know that BMS has a very affordable and workable JBD for BMW diesels. My feeling is that even though Schnitzer, Hartge, Kelleners Sport, and Steinbauer Performance charge a lot more for their boxes, that there is real value there. It's not just a rip-off where you're getting just what a $279 box can do while paying 5x more (15x in the case of Schnitzer, but you get a 2-year warranty on the engine).

    If you look at the installation schematics for the German boxes vs. all of the less expensive brands you see a completely different set-up, even though it's still plug-n-play. The German boxes plug directly into the injectors and the exhaust temperature sensor, not just the CR pressure and boost sensors. There's a helluva lot more information flowing between the ECU and the tuning box in the more expensive set-up. For one thing, that means a much more accurate and responsive ability to manipulate main injection duration making it unnecessary to fool around with increasing CR pressure or pre- and post-injection timing.

    To me, that surplus of information means safer and smoother acceleration, less stress on engine components and the DPF, and less emissions. So if you can afford it, it's worth the extra money IMO.
    Do you have any of these schematics to share?

    15x for a piggyback box? What is it doing other than showing the name Schnitzer stamped on the box?

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by stevehecht Click here to enlarge
    We all know that BMS has a very affordable and workable JBD for BMW diesels. My feeling is that even though Schnitzer, Hartge, Kelleners Sport, and Steinbauer Performance charge a lot more for their boxes
    I design these systems for a living so I'm intimately familiar with all of the various differences. Technically speaking the "German" boxes you speak of are functionally equivalent to say the JBD or JB3 system. Most piggyback boxes are. These systems are capable of reading in analog and PWM inputs, manipulating data, and performing analog and PWM outputs. The JBD chip for example is the same chip used on our obsoleted JB3 system. It can handle 8 analog inputs, 5 PWM inputs, and 5 analog or PWM outputs. But these are all "old" technology systems. The new technology systems, like the JB4, procede, and some of Haltech' boxes, are all CANbus based. Meaning instead of sampling each sensor directly they tap in to the spinal cord of the vehicle and can monitor literally EVERY sensor simultaneously. So please let's not refer to anything unable to do CANbus as "high tech". We're talking about low tech piggyback devices here. The difference is how many wires the tuner decides to plug it in to and whether or not the tuner finds a useful application for the data coming in.

    Now with the diesel tuning specially we don't offer a CANbus system. Because with our 335d development I determined the potential consumer benefits did not justify the development costs. So instead we adapted a traditional system that was originally used on the N54 before CANbus came around. Our first diesel tuner actually was connected to six sensors when first designed. But during the diesel turbo development and testing phase we determined the that going to a single channel system allowed us to provide roughly the same power gain, same reliability, with a much easier to install and remove system. So we took that route and over the last several years the JBD has been successful beyond our wildest imagination.

    It's entirely possible that some tangible benefit can be obtained by sampling more sensors in the BMW turbo diesel motor. If the system is able to replicated each injector PWM signal (I've not seen this done successfully on a BMW application) then almost certainly that system will be capable of making more power than the JBD can. I just don't think it's going to be worth the effort. At least not to the segment of the market we're looking to work within. With those who claim it's better, rarely are they willing to offer any objective evidence to demonstrate their opinion, so my only response to them is to run whatever best meets their needs. I'm certainly not going to try to stop some fool from being separated from his money if his heart is set on it. And in some cases the higher cost and more difficult installation may make sense for them. It's a details business though so it would depend on specific details that few consumers really understand.

    On prices, they all cost roughly the same to manufacturer. It's a fraction of the retail price. But you're not really paying for a device, you are paying for the tuning the device delivers. Because we do such a high volume with say the JBD we can sell it for $279 and do fine. The "German" tuners are selling fewer units so have to charge more to cover their nonrecurring expenses. In many cases I think the EU market is more tolerant to higher prices. So while I tend to just put a fair price on things my EU contemporaries seem to want to charge 2-4x more and then argue why theirs is worth the extra cost. To each their own there.

    PS. I'm of German decent but JB tuners are designed in the USA. Click here to enlarge
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    PS. Just out of curiosity I looked in to what Hartge is offering for the BMW diesel. Since you mentioned fuel injector control I was excited to see what it's doing for them. But when I saw the photo of their harness I realized it's not doing what you claim. It's just modifying the fuel mass sensor as the JBD and all other existing systems do.

    Here are the sensors it connects to as best as I can tell from the photo:

    Fuel Mass
    MAP
    Oil Temp
    RPM via cam sprocket
    Gas Pedal
    +12v
    Ground

    The JBD has Fuel Mass, +5v, and Ground. During development we discovered the DME already scales fuel mass based on RPM & engine load. So instead of using RPM, oil temp, and pedal, as we do on other motors, with this application it's all inferred in the fuel mass signal. We also don't bother with MAP as the 335d already runs 26psi from the factory and boost can not be raised with a MAP bias alone. Although we should probably add it back to the JBD design one of these days just to shut up the naysayers who believe it's adding more boost pressure.

    Looking at this photo this system will perform almost identically to the JBD. Forward over the photo of the harness that connects to each injector directly as I'm very curious about that. It would in theory be able to make more power than a JBD or Hartge can but it's a tricky business. I'm curious how its worked out for them.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
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    hey Terry,

    Thanks much for devoting that much time and energy to your reply--I can tell that you love what you do! Just below is a schematic of the Schnitzer TB. It is exactly like the set-up Kelleners Sport and Steinbauer Performance use. Hartge may use the set-up in your photo (still checking), and both Hartge and Steinbauer also use a reference signal (throttle pedal) direct connector. I'd be interested to read your analysis of this schematic. My contention (which could very well be very wrong) is that the individual connectors to the injectors allows a lot more information to be communicated between the box, the ECU, and the injectors--allowing more precise control of combustion, less stress on the injectors valves, cylinders, etc. as well as more efficient fuel combustion, hence less stress on the DPF and lower emissions.

    Below the schematic I've included a short paragraph from the Kelleners Sport website explaining their principle of how they do their diesel tuning. This principle would apply to the Hartge, Schnitzer, and Steinbauer brands as well. I wonder how this description compares with how the JBD functions. Your precise technical descriptions make me all warm and fuzzy inside, so fire away (so to speak)!


    Click here to enlarge

    The tuning principle for diesel engines: Kelleners Sport additional engine control units for increasing power mainly influence the main
    injection time. The pre-injection and post-injection times are not affected because this would lead to a rough running. Consequently, the rail pressure remains unchanged when a Kelleners Sport additional engine control unit is fitted because increasing it would result in larger amounts of fuel being injected during the pre-injection and post-injection phases. Moreover, this would also increase the load on the fuel system, something that does not occur when a Kelleners Sport additional engine control unit is fitted.
    Last edited by stevehecht; 01-04-2014 at 12:48 AM.

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    The edit function has disappeared from this thread (??), but I can now say for sure that the Hartge piggyback also plugs in to the injectors and the exhaust temp sensor just like the others. I have the installation manual as an email attachment from Hartge, but I can't figure out how to get it here. Terry, I will email it to you directly.

    steve

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by stevehecht Click here to enlarge
    The edit function has disappeared from this thread (??), but I can now say for sure that the Hartge piggyback also plugs in to the injectors and the exhaust temp sensor just like the others. I have the installation manual as an email attachment from Hartge, but I can't figure out how to get it here. Terry, I will email it to you directly.

    steve
    Editing has a 10 minute time limit.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by stevehecht Click here to enlarge
    hey Terry,

    Thanks much for devoting that much time and energy to your reply--I can tell that you love what you do! Just below is a schematic of the Schnitzer TB. It is exactly like the set-up Kelleners Sport and Steinbauer Performance use. Hartge may use the set-up in your photo (still checking), and both Hartge and Steinbauer also use a reference signal (throttle pedal) direct connector. I'd be interested to read your analysis of this schematic. My contention (which could very well be very wrong) is that the individual connectors to the injectors allows a lot more information to be communicated between the box, the ECU, and the injectors--allowing more precise control of combustion, less stress on the injectors valves, cylinders, etc. as well as more efficient fuel combustion, hence less stress on the DPF and lower emissions.

    Below the schematic I've included a short paragraph from the Kelleners Sport website explaining their principle of how they do their diesel tuning. This principle would apply to the Hartge, Schnitzer, and Steinbauer brands as well. I wonder how this description compares with how the JBD functions. Your precise technical descriptions make me all warm and fuzzy inside, so fire away (so to speak)!
    Heading out shortly so just a short reply -- but the principle of diesel tuning is the same for every diesel piggyback system. Fool the DME in to injecting more fuel than it otherwise would.

    Your statements about "less stress on the injector valves", "cylinders", "more efficient fuel combustion", "less stress on DRF", etc, are all basically nonsense. Making more power = more fuel in combustion = the same net effect in terms of stress, efficiency, etc. In terms of adding the fuel with a piggyback it can be done three ways. With a methanol injection kit that physically injects more fuel, by directly increasing the injector IPW (which I've not seen done with a BMW turbo, although your diagram implies they are doing it I remain skeptical, maybe an install guide showing the unit installed on an actual car with photos would convince me), or by altering the fuel mass reading, which is how every BMW turbo diesel piggyback I've ever seen operates, including the JBD. Altering the fuel mass is a preferred method for getting more fuel in to combustion as this allows the DME to continue to control the very critical injection timing, overall load demand, etc. The catch here is the fuel mass can only be altered so much before the DME throws a plausibility fault. So altering IPW directly in theory could allow higher power gains. Of course higher power gains also means higher EGT and more wear on the engine.

    Where other sensor data comes in to play is when you want to consider how and when the fuel mass feedback is altered. In the case of the JBD it's altered only as a function of fuel mass demand. As fuel mass is already mapped on load. So in essence the JBD is providing a fixed percentage performance increase across the board as a function of the gas pedal input and every other sensor the DME reads. When the DME reduces demand due to an increased EGT reading, for example, the JBD will lower it's attenuation. When traciton control kicks in similarly the JBD will react. The alternative is to read additional external sensors such as the gas pedal, boost sensor, engine speed, to alter the fuel mass as a function of the combination of those sensors. But in any event the same physical attenuation to fuel mass is what is increasing the power output. We're only debating when and how much that fuel mass is increased as a function of engine operation.
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    It is the sole responsibility of the purchaser and installer of any BMS part to employ the correct installation techniques required to ensure the proper operation of BMS parts, and BMS disclaims any and all liability for any part failure due to improper installation or use. It is the sole responsibility of the customer to verify that the use of their vehicle and items purchased comply with federal, state and local regulations. BMS claims no legal federal, state or local certification concerning pollution controlled motor vehicles or mandated emissions requirements. BMS products labeled for use only in competition racing vehicles may only be used on competition racing vehicles operated exclusively on a closed course in conjunction with a sanctioned racing event, in accordance with all federal and state laws, and may never be operated on public roads/highways. Please see http://www.burgertuning.com/emissions_info.html for more information on legal requirements related to use of BMS parts.

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    by directly increasing the injector IPW (which I've not seen done with a BMW turbo, although your diagram implies they are doing it I remain skeptical, maybe an install guide showing the unit installed on an actual car with photos would convince me), or by altering fuel mass reading
    Email attachment with Hartge's installation guide with photos was sent to you by me about an hour ago.

    We're only debating when and how much that fuel mass is increased as a function of engine operation.
    Unless, as you said, the TB is able to directly manipulate IPW (by talking directly to the injectors, I would think). The Kelleners Sport quote I provided denies that their box increases the amount of fuel being injected pre- or post-injection and denies any additional (pressure) load on the fuel system.

    Your statements about "less stress on the injector valves", "cylinders", "more efficient fuel combustion", "less stress on DRF", etc, are all basically nonsense. Making more power = more fuel in combustion = the same net effect in terms of stress, efficiency, etc.
    I'm not so sure about that equation. Making more power necessarily means more fuel being "combusted." but I would think that HOW that fuel was introduced would make a difference to how much stress was produced on the relevant engine parts as well as to fuel efficiency--e.g., whether you increase combustion by increasing fuel mass through increased CR pressure, or whether you increase fuel mass combustion by increasing main injection time (~IPW). In other words, using less fuel pressure to achieve a similar increase in power. I think that's what the Kelleners Sport folks are saying.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by stevehecht Click here to enlarge
    Email attachment with Hartge's installation guide with photos was sent to you by me about an hour ago.



    Unless, as you said, the TB is able to directly manipulate IPW (by talking directly to the injectors, I would think). The Kelleners Sport quote I provided denies that their box increases the amount of fuel being injected pre- or post-injection and denies any additional (pressure) load on the fuel system.
    Sorry I'm not following you here. The throttle body is used for boost and load regulation. The DME opens the throttle body before allowing more fuel to be injected. This has nothing to do with a piggyback system.

    I'm not so sure about that equation. Making more power necessarily means more fuel being "combusted." but I would think that HOW that fuel was introduced would make a difference to how much stress was produced on the relevant engine parts as well as to fuel efficiency--e.g., whether you increase combustion by increasing fuel mass through increased CR pressure, or whether you increase fuel mass combustion by increasing main injection time (~IPW). In other words, using less fuel pressure to achieve a similar increase in power. I think that's what the Kelleners Sport folks are saying.
    More pressure & less IPW, more IPW & less pressure, the net result is basically the same. More fuel mass injected. With diesel power generation ultimately fuel mass is power and both approaches increase/extend IPW with the DME itself continuing to control the base injection timing. Technically speaking by altering fuel mass a side benefit is a potentially higher injection pressure which may result in greater efficiency. While technically speaking direct IPW adjustment may result in less DME plausibility logic to dance around. But when done properly the net result of both methods is the same. More fuel in the cylinder timed by the DME which remains in full control of the injection. Get the base injection timing wrong and stuff breaks fast so piggyback tuners never touch it.

    What effectively determines stress in a turbo diesel in my opinion is EGT. More fuel, more power, higher EGT. Which is where boost pressure comes in. You need to keep air moving through the system to keep EGT in check. When EGT spikes you melt stuff. EGT is the main consideration of any diesel tuner. So generally speaking one would want to increase boost and fuel in proportion to keep EGT below specific levels. Except in this case boost is basically maxed out from the factory. So this limits the ultimate safe power generation with after market tuning. Using the fuel mass method the DME effectively remains in control and can throttle back IPW if EGT spikes outside of certain parameters and the same goes for direct injector control if done properly.

    I'm interested in hearing about the BMW turbo motor direct injector control for a couple reasons. First I've never seen it done on a turbo BMW. Secondly I've wondered if they are able to generate any additional power that way. With the JBD we have an adjustment setting which determines the extra fuel mass injected. And depending on the model we need to use different settings. With newer models the setting must be lower as BMW continually tightens their plausibility ranges. Direct injector control would bypass this limitation although create others.

    PS. I don't have any emails from you as of the writing of this.
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    It is the sole responsibility of the purchaser and installer of any BMS part to employ the correct installation techniques required to ensure the proper operation of BMS parts, and BMS disclaims any and all liability for any part failure due to improper installation or use. It is the sole responsibility of the customer to verify that the use of their vehicle and items purchased comply with federal, state and local regulations. BMS claims no legal federal, state or local certification concerning pollution controlled motor vehicles or mandated emissions requirements. BMS products labeled for use only in competition racing vehicles may only be used on competition racing vehicles operated exclusively on a closed course in conjunction with a sanctioned racing event, in accordance with all federal and state laws, and may never be operated on public roads/highways. Please see http://www.burgertuning.com/emissions_info.html for more information on legal requirements related to use of BMS parts.

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    I sent it to terry@burgertuning.com at 12:13 this morning without getting a bounce message. Do you want me to send it again, or to a different address? It's got that subject header in German.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by stevehecht Click here to enlarge
    I sent it to terry@burgertuning.com at 12:13 this morning without getting a bounce message. Do you want me to send it again, or to a different address? It's got that subject header in German.
    Nothing here or in my spam. Click here to enlarge Maybe try uploading it to a drop box and posting that link.
    Burger Motorsports
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    It is the sole responsibility of the purchaser and installer of any BMS part to employ the correct installation techniques required to ensure the proper operation of BMS parts, and BMS disclaims any and all liability for any part failure due to improper installation or use. It is the sole responsibility of the customer to verify that the use of their vehicle and items purchased comply with federal, state and local regulations. BMS claims no legal federal, state or local certification concerning pollution controlled motor vehicles or mandated emissions requirements. BMS products labeled for use only in competition racing vehicles may only be used on competition racing vehicles operated exclusively on a closed course in conjunction with a sanctioned racing event, in accordance with all federal and state laws, and may never be operated on public roads/highways. Please see http://www.burgertuning.com/emissions_info.html for more information on legal requirements related to use of BMS parts.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by stevehecht Click here to enlarge
    I sent it to terry@burgertuning.com at 12:13 this morning without getting a bounce message. Do you want me to send it again, or to a different address? It's got that subject header in German.
    You can also probably attach it directly here.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    You can also probably attach it directly here.
    I don't know how.

    I've sent numerous emails to Terry with attachments. Let's see if he gets any of them.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by stevehecht Click here to enlarge
    I don't know how.

    I've sent numerous emails to Terry with attachments. Let's see if he gets any of them.
    You just click on go advanced then attachments...

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by stevehecht Click here to enlarge
    I don't know how.

    I've sent numerous emails to Terry with attachments. Let's see if he gets any of them.
    Finally got one!

    I reviewed the Hartge 320d install guide and it appears they are biasing the IPW rather than attenuating the fuel mass sensor. Unfortunately I can't find any dynojet runs so it's difficult to determine if that is allowing more power than altering the fuel mass sensor, but it theoretically may be. Since the DME is not really aware of the true IPW you get around one of the nannies. On the other hand safety becomes more of a concern as the DME is not directly in control of IPW. And of course, more power, higher EGT, more wear, so there is never really a free lunch here.

    We've not done much F series diesel testing/tuning yet but I think the cars are starting to turn up more here and there. At some point we'll borrow/buy one and do some dyno testing. If we're able to safely make more power using a direct injector bias rather than a simple fuel mass bias I'm not opposed to it. It's just four more wires. We'd probably switch it over to a CANbus system at the same time allowing reading of every sensor, not just the ones physically connected to. Then maybe we can then claim "superiority" and charge 3x as much. Click here to enlarge

    Since you're very interested in F series diesel tuning I'd say throw one of these on your car, do some before and after dyno runs, datalog some data, and share your experiences with it.
    Burger Motorsports
    Home of the Worlds fastest N20s, N54s, N55s, N63s, S55s, and S63s!

    It is the sole responsibility of the purchaser and installer of any BMS part to employ the correct installation techniques required to ensure the proper operation of BMS parts, and BMS disclaims any and all liability for any part failure due to improper installation or use. It is the sole responsibility of the customer to verify that the use of their vehicle and items purchased comply with federal, state and local regulations. BMS claims no legal federal, state or local certification concerning pollution controlled motor vehicles or mandated emissions requirements. BMS products labeled for use only in competition racing vehicles may only be used on competition racing vehicles operated exclusively on a closed course in conjunction with a sanctioned racing event, in accordance with all federal and state laws, and may never be operated on public roads/highways. Please see http://www.burgertuning.com/emissions_info.html for more information on legal requirements related to use of BMS parts.

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    Hartge, Kelleners Sport, Steinbauer Performance installation manuals

    Let me know if this worked. I hope so!
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Attachments worked fine.

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