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EIDS and EFI - any alternatives to MJ?


twodoorgaz
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Hi everyone.

 

So from the start of planning my V8 build to actually picking up a spanner the world of EFI seems to have changed. At the time, MJ was one of the few DIY friendly options that could control both spark and fuel. Or a combination of Megajolt to run ford EIDS coupled with Hotwire for injection.

 

Fast forward a few years and MJ seems to have crept up in price with lots of (granted, very nice) pre-built systems, the cost of complete aftermarket systems has come down, the cost of land rover ownership and the appetite/justification for investing more in parts has grown and the accessibility of aftermarket systems (thinking Holley Sniper here) has developed.

 

The Sniper system in particular has developed momentum, with even the Series2Club forums containing plenty of members that have fitted the setup to 2.25 engines, spurred on by its use by NorthAmericaOverland on their series builds.

 

So - at the risk of covering old ground, in 2022 what systems are recommended for the old Rover V8?

 

For me, I'd be looking for an out of the box solution - I've had to admit that I don't have the skill or patience to experiment with a hybrid solution. I specifically want to run a distributorless system (the engine I'm building is based around a GEMS 4.0 serp front cover with no dizzy hole as I don't want to use a longer timing cover/waterpump so even the interim 3.9 timing cover with the dizzy hole and serp belt is longer than I'd like) and I'd like to run a simple throttle body (either one of the LR variants or a USA style intake manifold with a pancake filter). Its going in a classic so vintage looks are a big bonus.

 

The Sniper system, with a connected Hyperspark distributor is available out of the box for a Rover V8 (listed as being for a Buick 215). That seems about as user friendly as you can get, can be delivered with an inlet manifold and I'm OK with the cost. That it automatically learns and has a user-friendly/idiot proof removable display unit is a massive plus... except it does need a distributor.

 

Is there a system that I haven't mentioned (like Link or Fury or something like that) that can control both spark and fuel when used with the Ford EIDS coil pack. Or would I have to use a combination of MJ+Hotwire / MJ+Sniper or simple MS for everything.

 

I don't know why but I'm just not comfortable running parallel systems, I'd rather an all-in-one - but probably not MS. I'm even open to keeping the carbs and just running MJ in isolation (I know, I know - I've been schooled previously on the downsides to carbs when I first broached this subject a couple of years ago.)

 

Really appreciate any guidance - thank you.

 

 

 

Edited by twodoorgaz
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just to follow up.

 

At the minute the only solution I'm aware of that gives me what I really want (fuel and spark with an idiot-proof install) is the full Sniper kit:

(list pinched from an American range Rover forum)

  • Sniper 2300
  • Sniper EFI HyperSpark ingition coil
  • Sniper EFI HyperSpark ingition box
  • Sniper EFI HyperSpark distributor Buick 215-350
  • Set of ignition leads (MSD) 
  • Fuel pump (I would recommend Bosch), filters and hoses

The Sniper parts would cost me £1600 delivered (regular travel over there) due to the historically bad exchange rate.

 

However, that would force me to use the interim timing cover and I really would prefer to run off coil packs instead of any sort of distributor.

 

Edited by twodoorgaz
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You don't need to use EDIS with MS, you can trigger LS style coils or VW coils or basically anything with either dumb or logic level coils, it does tidy the solution up a bit IMHO, but nothing off the shelf as you want.

Understand the reticence to go with the interim cover, later stuff is much nicer.

So that leaves you with other systems out there, just about any ecu, Link, haltech, etc will run the Rover V8 and will likely do it without messing about with EDIS and aged coil packs, but it against won't be off the shelf I'm afraid, will need wiring and setup.

You could look at Phil at extraEfi, he has kits, not sure how complete they are, but are less than your estimated cost. Options of MS2 or MS3, which does bring some benefits like idle stepper motor control other stuff that also tidy things a bit.

 

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Wow - thank you. The LS coil aspect is new to me and that opens up a whole new world - I had always been nervous about the future availability of 1990s ford tech parts but if a modern plug on coil can be fitted to another engine then that's a game changer. Have just been through the ExtraEFi site.

 

So (on an already injected Rover V8) : factory throttle body with injector + factory sensors + factory fuel pump + LS coil (one per cylinder) + short lead to run to factory spark plugs + trigger wheel + aftermarket ECU = fuel and spark controlled?

 

Apologies, but if I was still to shy away from MS and throw money across the pond to Holley then you would assume that their Sniper system would have outputs to run the LS Coils too?

 

The reason I'm so keen on the sniper is that I'm also planning to fit it to my otherwise stock 2.25p SIIA. I know that their Autolite 1100 throttle body is a near perfect fit in place of the Zenith carburettor (and looks fantastic) which solves a big problem that the Rover V8 doesn't have - given the latter already has plenty of factory injector/inlet/plenum options, however on that vehicle I always wanted to fit distributorless ignition too - I wonder if the LS coils can work there too.

 

So, even more has changed in the last few years! Really interesting.

 

Edit: Also just learned that the terminology for these magical coils seems to be "CNP" (Coil Near Plug) which is reassuring as I was picturing a spark plug with a coil attached directly to it and was imagining how much that would cost to replace (and how difficult it would be to fit to an alternative engine).

 

 

Edited by twodoorgaz
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55 minutes ago, Bowie69 said:

You could look at Phil at extraEfi, he has kits, not sure how complete they are, but are less than your estimated cost. Options of MS2 or MS3, which does bring some benefits like idle stepper motor control other stuff that also tidy things a bit.

Nige at Megasquirt-V8 has kits too, using modern VAG coil packs as described (5v triggered) but can also use any other 5v-triggered coils which is many. His stuff is fairly "out of the box" for RV8 with a complete loom and pre-loaded tune suitable for whatever engine you're using if you ask him.

I've had a fair few of Phil's ECU's in for repair over the years and have never been overly impressed with the build quality / soldering job and they're never conformal coated either.

MS1 is more than good enough to run a Rover V8 or 2.25p and is super simple. MS2 is more complicated but does add a few niceties including stepper idle control, and is now considered mature. Both use the same basic board, the MS2 is just a faster CPU and a stepper driver chip.

MS3 is a frickin' nightmare frankenstein thing that's hideously complicated and expensive and you gain nothing useful with it. It's a horrific design. Don't do it.

 

Your first post seems to be confusing MegaJolt (MJ) with MegaSquirt (MS) - Jolt will *only* run ignition systems, MS will run Fuel AND/OR ignition - either one or both - and will run anything you can get a fuel injector and/or coil on to.

Also; coil packs are not EDIS, the EDIS module does (the hard part of) the job of an MJ in that it reads a trigger wheel and fires ignition coils. The ECU (MJ or MS) then just tells it what timing to set.

These days, the ECU (MJ or MS) can read the crank sensor / trigger wheel directly and fire low-voltage triggered coils / coil packs (which many are these days) very reliably. I think LS coils fall into that category, VAG ones definitely do.

In the olden days there weren't many coils with built-in ignitor circuits so you had to add high-power drivers into the ECU which was a pain and caused a lot of voltage spikes which caused running problems.

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You don't need the special distributor of the Sniper system since the GEMS RV8 already has a crank sensor. Most system should be able to be configured to read it, it's a 36-1 toothed wheel IIRC.

I think if I were to do it I'd go for a Haltech or similar, they seem much more friendly to tune and a bit more robust than MS. And the price isn't all that far off either.

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Fridge - thank you, that's really helpful. If I do go down the MS route I'll be sure to sick with Nige's kit. It was probably my bad writing giving the impression of confusion between MegaJolt and MegaSquirt - I'll confess the difference between the two systems was one of the few areas that I had understood.

 

@elbekko - I'm sure to be wrong, but my understanding is that while the GEMS RV8 has a lovely flywheel mounted wheel and sensor that this was a different format from the common 36+1 toothed crank pulley wheels and that aftermarket ECUs couldn't read it making it necessary to tear it out and fit a trigger wheel on the crank pulley instead. If I'm wrong then that would be lovely as it would hide the wheel beautifully at the back of the engine.

Edit: I stand corrected. It looks like the manual discovery trigger wheel is indeed 36+1 and can be used with MS. See here: http://www.super7thheaven.co.uk/rover-v8-trigger-wheel-megasquirt/. OK so this is pushing me back towards MS as that's a real boon for me in keeping the engine bay as simple as possible.

Edited by twodoorgaz
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14 hours ago, FridgeFreezer said:

Nige at Megasquirt-V8 has kits too, using modern VAG coil packs as described (5v triggered) but can also use any other 5v-triggered coils which is many. His stuff is fairly "out of the box" for RV8 with a complete loom and pre-loaded tune suitable for whatever engine you're using if you ask him.

I hadn't realised there had been movement on this from Nige, thought it was still on MS1 (in fact even looking now, MS2 is not pushed really), also assume there was still a lot of work to go into getting up and running, despite all the lovely brackets and stuff.

That said, NO aftermarket EFI system will ever take only five minutes to install, though the sniper with the 36-1 trigger on the flexplate/flywheel should work and not need the front cover change.

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39 minutes ago, twodoorgaz said:

Edit: I stand corrected. It looks like the manual discovery trigger wheel is indeed 36+1 and can be used with MS. See here: http://www.super7thheaven.co.uk/rover-v8-trigger-wheel-megasquirt/. OK so this is pushing me back towards MS as that's a real boon for me in keeping the engine bay as simple as possible.

The auto flywheel has the same trigger wheel :)

And the later Thor/Bosch has a 60-2 wheel.

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MS (when built for VR sensor input) can read almost any trigger wheel (any number of teeth), including the stock GEMS one on the flywheel - it's only EDIS that demands 36-1 because that's what Ford designed it for.

@Bowie69 I think Nige has a few EDIS still available and it's a simple robust setup so for a lot of folks it's a decent option, when the EDIS run out or for folks who want something different the VAG route is pretty robust and the parts are common.

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