I could talk all day long about proper tuning and how involved it “should” be. All to often shops take advantage of customers for one reason or another, sometimes because they are chasing $$ and not focused on the bigger picture or because they just truly do not know how to tune properly or what to charge. Over the last few years it seems there are more so called “tuners” out there than there are 7 elevens on every street corner so the average enthusiast feels as though they need a degree in engineering just to be able to decipher what is wrong from right and who to believe. I believe in true custom tunes and not wasting hard earned money on a “mail order” general tune that works with every car regardless of how many miles are on your drive-train or wondering what condition the drive-train was in on the vehicle “Mr Mail Order” built his base files from?
I believe in getting the biggest bang for your buck and when a custom tune can usually double the power,torque, and fuel economy output from that of a mail order tune it just doesn’t seem worth it to me. I think your picking up what I am putting down here. Remember the days when the old timers used to tell stories of owning a “gem” that just seemed to run like a raped ape right off the showroom floor? Believe it or not those differences are still present today, although the tolerances are much tighter on manufacturing today I have still seen a 10-12rwhp swing on brand new vehicles with next to no miles on them. Granted 10-12rwhp is not alot in a 3800# car but it is enough sometimes to feel a difference in throttle response or part throttle acceleration, the same as those “mail order tunes” advertised at 20-25hp.
During my “Dream Car” days we would get brand new S197’s dropped off by Ford to be transformed into fire breathing street machines and before a bolt would get turned, I put each and every car on the dyno for a baseline test and we would provide the graphs as part of the “Customer Packet” when a customer purchased a vehicle. One thing we gathered through this testing is that there are very few vehicles that are actually making the horsepower they are rated at (usually they make more) and that there was about a 10-12rwhp swing from car to car in the same day. With all of these variables before you even do any mods I can understand how frustrating this whole process can be. Let’s face it folks, it doesn’t really matter how much money you make every week no one likes to hand it over and get grief in return!
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