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We learned the Top 10 tuning tips for the modern 5.0 in SCT Performance’s Coyote class
By Steve Turner
We’ve made a few trips over to SCT Performance lately chasing tech. As such, we learned that SCT would be hosting its first ever Coyote tuning class, so we made it a point to drop by and see what this was all about.
SCT has long supported its dealers by offering training and certification programs under the SCT Custom Tuning University banner. The company offers introductory and advanced classes for Ford tuners, which provides its dealers with a background in tuning basics and a working knowledge of the company’s software and devices. Each of these tuning classes is held at the company’s headquarters in Sanford, Florida.
As we said, the Coyote class was the first of its kind, and in order to take this class dealers must have first completed the introductory and advanced tuning classes at SCT University. With those under their belts, tuners are ready to step up the additional complexities of the Coyote platform and its Copperhead PCM.
Just a brief time in the classroom with SCT’s tuning instructors and dealers gave us a whole new respect for the talented professionals that tune our rides. We tend to take today’s balance of incredible performance and driveability for granted, but these folks really have to know their stuff to get the job done.
If you are an SCT dealer and are interested in attending this class, the second round of 2014 In-House Coyote 5.0 training dates is August 29-30, 2014. Until then, we are going to share the Top 10 most important aspects of tuning the Coyote 5.0 from SCT calibrator Matt Alderman:
1. Fuel Injectors
“The wrong injector data can cause drivability issues, mass-airflow transfer function inaccuracies, and incorrect airflow calculations,” Matt explained. “Always use injectors with good data. Also, beware of data made on a three-bar fuel system. The Coyotes are a four-bar fuel system.”
2. Fuel Control
“When using long-tube headers or turbo kits the transport delays and temp loss values need to be dialed in for that combo,” he said.
“Aftermarket throttle bodies need idle airflow calibrated to prevent oscillation and to prevent the infamous wrench light from airflow errors,” Matt explained.
4. Electronic Throttle
“It is very important to have the correct values when using aftermarket throttle bodies or airflow,” Matt said. “ Otherwise torque and drivability issues will result from miscalculations.”
5. Variable Cam Timing
“When tuning for aftermarket cams it is very important to properly populate the factors with the new cam data and also dial in optimal performance from the VCT,” he said.
6. Torque Tables
“When I calibrate the torque tables, I will go through the process doing my sweeps at each valve event and calculating what the flywheel torque actually is,” Matt explained.
“The infamous HDFX tables,” Matt said. “The question of what tables are used and when. The only way to find out is to log HDFX spark for all the functioning tables and that will tell you what it is using and from what tables.”
8. Knock Sensors
“There is power to be found in calibrating the knock sensors,” he said. “When they where calibrated from the factory it was for the stock combo. Well that has all changed. So they will pick up noise. Sometimes you will get false knock,especially with noisy blowers.”
“When datalogging these cars, the first parameter that I tell people to watch is the Torque Source. It is often overlooked. These are torque-based systems. If you are dealing with throttle bodies closing, most of the time Torque Source will tell you why instead of chasing your tail,” Matt explained. “Others to include short-term fuel trims, this is the immediate correction, long-term fuel trim (this is the learned correction), HDFX (when doing spark tables) and knock-sensor calibration. MAF frequency or period it will put you in the same place in the transfer function. Very important lbs per/min, I like using this to compare airflow when doing my VCT work.”
10. Dyno Testing
“When doing a performance tune on a dyno make sure the test conditions are consistent or your numbers will change due to conditions and not the calibration,” Matt added. “Also beware of EGR conditions skewing your air/fuel ratio reading. If your shop does not have good ventilation you will get EGR and that will make your mixture rich, so when you lean it out on the dyno and then take it out on the street you will be lean.”