Let me preface by saying, “tread lightly.”
With certain mods that I’ve been doing (swapping the exhaust with an aftermarket TEC 2-1 and removing the baffle), those that I have planned (air box removal), or simply just wanting to learn more about how to make my bike perform as best as possible, TuneECU has been a constant topic in conversation.
TuneECU is an incredible piece of software written by Alain Fontaine that enables you to perform diagnostics and set parameters on your Triumph Bonneville EFIs. (It also works for other bikes and manufacturers, FYI.)
The ECU is an Engine Control Unit (aka Electronic Control Unit) that reads our bike’s various sensors and determines how to fuel the bike. Our bikes have a “map” which, in a layman’s nutshell, is a set of directions to abide by. (note: the bike will make minor adjustments to this map on its own.) Please note that the Triumph Bonneville T100 utilizes a Keihin ECU.
Our bikes come to us, generally, with a proper map dialed in. However, as we begin to make mods, we change variables yet the existing map will not be cognizant of this. Therefore, we have to manually update the map. Herein lies the beauty of TuneECU. It gives us the power to do so and if you take the time to research and not rush into it, it becomes a very powerful tool. In all humbleness, it is one that I’m barely beginning to learn. As such, this post details only my start. I welcome advice from those much more knowledgeable. I am not going to go into depth about the workings of TuneECU because, 1) I’m not educated enough, and 2) there are too many variables and scenarios amongst all of us. I will, however, share with you the wealth of information that I came upon already on the interwebs.
In order to interface with your bike (ECU, that is), you’ll need a computer with Windows OS, a proper cable interface and FTDI driver, and the TuneECU software package with DLL and maps.
Without a doubt, the cable to get is from Lonelec in the UK. It always warms my heart when I have to purchase something for my bike from a company that is actually located in the UK.
Approximately 10 days later, the cable arrived. It’s a high-quality interface that even comes with an Android adapter. The cable itself is nice and pliable and not of the cheapo stiff variety.
The following photo shows where you will need to plug the Lonelec plug into.
Firing up the TuneECU software…
There is a series of functions that you’ll need to perform. Downloading and saving your map, opening a new map and altering it, uploading your new map, resetting your throttle position sensor, and readapting.
I’m going to end this post with a series of links. There is a fountain of great information about TuneECU that I can’t do justice. That, and I don’t want to steer you down the path of screwing up your engine. As such, I recommend that you explore the following links…
Alain Fontaine’s TuneECU site (the creator): www.tuneecu.com/TuneECU_En/
TuneECU Manual (PDF): www.tuneecu.com/Tunes_in_Hex_and_dat/TuneECU/TuneECU_2_5_Description_En.pdf
Repository of maps, maintained by Tom Hamburg: www.tomhamburg.net/Tune_List.html
TuneECU TPS and ISC Stepper Adjustment (PDF) by Tom Hamburg: tuneecu.com/Tunes_in_Hex_and_dat/TuneECU/TuneECU_TPS_and_ISC_Stepper_Adjustment_A4Rev_02_20120204_EN.pdf
TuneECU for Dummies by Ebster1085, probably the best “quick-start how-to” resource to get you going: www.triumphrat.net/ecm-and-fi-tuning-help-tips-and-tricks/218346-tuneecu-for-dummies-installation-guide-and-questions-pertaining-to-installation.html
FTDI drivers: www.ftdichip.com/FTDrivers.htm
Mark Robbins’ Youtube TuneECU demo on a Triumph Tiger: www.youtube.com/watch?v=0hE2GnnqWWE
Triumph Twin Power User Guide: www.triumphtwinpower.com/pdf/EFI%20TuneLoader%20User%20Guide.pdf
Rottweiler Youtube TuneECU demo on a KTM bike: www.youtube.com/watch?v=AbF1xJgAIP8
Adaptive Fuel Systems White Paper (PDF): tuneecu.com/Tunes_in_Hex_and_dat/TuneECU/Adaptive_Fuel_Systems_EN.pdf
Post from Forchetto detailing the beginnings of TuneECU: www.triumphrat.net/twins-technical-talk/188811-downloadable-efi-maps-from-triumph-twin-power.html
I’ve been having some success. My original map from the dealer was 20731 (Bonneville \ Production silencers – part numbers T2206356/61 or T2206366/71 or T2206476/82 or T2206486/91 only \ Fuel up to E25 \ Minimum 91 RON (87 RON/MON) fuel). Today, I uploaded 20504 and the bike is idling and performing much better, however I’m getting some popping during deceleration. I’m working on that.
Please note that there is a guy spraying down the sidewalks, hence the extraneous noise. Idle is low, around 650-700RPM.
Below are the before and after maps. Now I just need to learn how to read them.
RESET ADAPTATION PROCESS
Once you’ve pushed your map to your bike’s ECU, you’ll need to reset adaptation via TuneECU and then idle your bike so that it can readapt. From TuneECU’s site:
Reset Adaption specifically for the Triumph EFI Twin models:
This procedure should be carried out with a cold engine.
- Connect your laptop to your bikes ECM with your OBD2 USB cable.
- Turn the ignition on, wait 10 seconds and then turn it off again.
- Turn the ignition on and wait until TuneECU has connected, then select “Reset Adaption” from the ECU menu.
- Once clicked you will get a “Reset Adaption Complete” message after 5-15 seconds, OK this.
- Start the engine with the cold start knob pulled out and don’t touch the throttle.
- Let the engine idle for 15 – 30 seconds and push the cold start knob in, but only to the first indent and not all the way.
- After about 3-5 minutes or sooner if you think your engine will idle OK without you touching the throttle, push in the cold start knob all the way.
- Let the engine idle until the TPS light in the status bar becomes green, usually around 10 to 20 minutes.
- If the TPS light doesn’t turn green after twenty minutes, don’t worry and turn the engine off anyway as sometimes it doesn’t trigger, and in our experience the job is done anyway.
- Turn the ignition off for a couple of minutes to ensure the ECM can save the adaptive data.
Following the description for the fast adaptation method with the Triumph Diagnostic Tool, Keihin only:
To start a fast adaption:
Connect the diagnostic tool, select ADJUST TUNE (Map) and select RESET ADAPTIONS. This will force a fast adaption routine to take place in around 5 seconds. For this to happen, the engine must be running, it must be at normal operating temperature and in closed loop control mode. Under any other conditions (such as with the engine not running) fast adaption will not take place and may cause default values to be loaded, which may then require a normal 12 minute adaption routine to be run.
The fast adaptation method is feasible even with TuneECU.
- Using the fast adaption method above with the engine off and the ignition on will reset the adaptions to their default (not adapted) factory settings. A full 12 minute adaption routine will then be required.
- Both methods only adapt the idle area – the off idle area can only be adapted when the motorcycle is ridden under load, i.e. on the road.
- The off idle adaption area covers cruise sites from 30 to 90 mph (50 to 145 kmh), so the motorcycle must be ridden in this area to adapt.
- As it is not always possible for dealers to adapt motorcycles in
this way, it is not a problem, then the motorcycle will perform continue adapting during normal use.
One big caveat: mind your batteries. Make sure to have a fully charged laptop throughout the process. It’s also recommended that you pull fuse #9 while downloading/reading maps. Pulling the fuse kills the headlight, thus saving drain on the bike’s battery. Finally, when running the bike during the adaptation phase, you might want to incorporate a battery tender. Otherwise, you may need to jump start the bike afterwards. At idle, the bike won’t recharge the battery and the voltage could drop below what the starter needs to operate.
Whatever needed to remove your seat.
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