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Issues with 420R first startup


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Just got my 420R build complete - did the Caterham roller barrel upgrade during the initial build. I'm having some issues on first start. It seems I have the incorrect ECU tune as was reported on this thread:  

 The tach does not read properly (barely moved with revs). But more significantly I am getting apparent intermittent firing from the rear-most cylinder. It will start but runs very rough, sounds like it's missing. Will die if don't keep throttle pressed. Blowing dark smoke from exhaust. Strong smell of gas (keeping in mind I have no cat on right now). Rear-most primary not as hot as the other three (tested with IR gun), but not completely cold. After idling a while with throttle pressed to keep it alive, especially if it's hot (water temp over 80-85c), it will smooth out and idle on its own, pretty smoothly. If I rev it very slowly and gently, the revs will smoothly climb. With any stabs of the throttle, or when attempting to drive it, when there's any load on it, it stumbles/bucks/sounds like it's missing again. I couldn't drive it over 20 miles an hour in second gear.   It will seem to toggle back and forth between missing and not missing. OBD scan says P2226 - "barometric pressure circuit".  Unplugging the MAP sensor doesn't change how it runs at all. Is this behavior all due to the wrong tune or is there something else going on? 

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Two potential issues from what we've gleaned from other members going through this experience as we speak... 

1) there is apparently a special map for more modern caterhams that have an external fuel pump module somewhere in the rear.  For those catehams, apparently you don't need the green injectors, the blue will suffice. 

2) there might be a wiring harness difference between your more modern caterham and older ones. Number of active pins etc. 

 

Looks like you don't have the right map on your ECU.. either because of the fuel module feature (sending way too much gas that it needs to) or the wrong map for the wiring harness you have.   

 

Blake, Simon, and others I'm sure can opine.. 

 

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SK400 was correct. The issue was incorrect injectors. The new RBTB tune works with the stock black injectors, not the green "R500" injectors. I swapped the injectors, cleaned up the plugs and it's running. Very strong oil smell (blow-by I presume?) but running strong. Put 20ish miles on, still stinky. Need to burp the coolant again, running a bit hot.

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  • 1 month later...

Hi all,

 

I have been trying to get my Caterham inspected but the OBD reader at my nearby inspection station will not read the ECU. I have received the the 985v and software from Rick at Time Machines, and purchased a Surface Pro to handle the Easimap software (I’m a Mac guy). Then downloaded the software and updates, connected to the ECU connection on the Caterham and updated through the 985v supplied by SBD Motorsport. I assume that is all I needed to do and then take her back to the inspection station. A neighbor has a OBD reader and it was still giving us an N/A reading on just about everything.

 

Can anyone can tell me if they know of a Caterham-friendly inspection station in southern Vermont, perhaps they have the OBD reader that has seen a Caterham before. Everyone here seems to think it is some sort of alien spacecraft.

 

On the Easimap software it indicated a P2226 error code indicating a Barometric pressure problem. The car only has 1600 miles on it. Does that sound normal?

 

• I saw this conversation on the Lotus Seven Club site:

 

SBD Motorsport did say that the cars are missing some sensors and will return a fault on Easimap. Is this the case here?

 

Yes, there is no dedicated barometric sensor used, as delivered by Caterham, the default 1,040mb pressure equates to 220m below sea level. If you have to do a lot of driving over 1,000m altitude, SBD can sell you a sensor plus an unlocked 9A4 ECU with an alphaN map that uses the barometric pressure and ignores the map sensor. It is fairly straightforward to add the sensor to pin 28 of the ECU plug.

 

Does anyone know if this is true?

 

Thanks for any help.

Tom

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27 minutes ago, Grog said:

Hi all,

 

I have been trying to get my Caterham inspected but the OBD reader at my nearby inspection station will not read the ECU. I have received the the 985v and software from Rick at Time Machines, and purchased a Surface Pro to handle the Easimap software (I’m a Mac guy). Then downloaded the software and updates, connected to the ECU connection on the Caterham and updated through the 985v supplied by SBD Motorsport. I assume that is all I needed to do and then take her back to the inspection station. A neighbor has a OBD reader and it was still giving us an N/A reading on just about everything.

 

Can anyone can tell me if they know of a Caterham-friendly inspection station in southern Vermont, perhaps they have the OBD reader that has seen a Caterham before. Everyone here seems to think it is some sort of alien spacecraft.

 

On the Easimap software it indicated a P2226 error code indicating a Barometric pressure problem. The car only has 1600 miles on it. Does that sound normal?

 

• I saw this conversation on the Lotus Seven Club site:

 

SBD Motorsport did say that the cars are missing some sensors and will return a fault on Easimap. Is this the case here?

 

Yes, there is no dedicated barometric sensor used, as delivered by Caterham, the default 1,040mb pressure equates to 220m below sea level. If you have to do a lot of driving over 1,000m altitude, SBD can sell you a sensor plus an unlocked 9A4 ECU with an alphaN map that uses the barometric pressure and ignores the map sensor. It is fairly straightforward to add the sensor to pin 28 of the ECU plug.

 

Does anyone know if this is true?

 

Thanks for any help.

Tom

 

I might be corrected on this but my understanding is that no Caterham have an OBD2 inspection passing type setup. Some (with stock ECU) might communicate with the ECU but will still likely fail due to not having all the emissions systems in place. Anything with the aftermarket ECU will still have the OBD2 and will have a CAN communization option but I don't believe that communicates with the OBD2 interfaces. This is why my older Zetec will never pass regular NY inspections.  

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Hmmm... I don't think thats' good news for me, they seem very strict here with emission etc.

But that explains getting the error code.

I'm going to take it back to the station again and see if my software update had any effect.

I don't know why they make you jump through hoops for this stuff....

 

I hope your out enjoying the weather in your 7... it finally stopped raining!

Thanks Vovchandr.

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9 minutes ago, Grog said:

Hmmm... I don't think thats' good news for me, they seem very strict here with emission etc.

But that explains getting the error code.

I'm going to take it back to the station again and see if my software update had any effect.

I don't know why they make you jump through hoops for this stuff....

 

I hope your out enjoying the weather in your 7... it finally stopped raining!

Thanks Vovchandr.

 

My 7 is all apart :( I should be enjoying the bikes in this weather but they need new batteries and I've been dropping the ball on getting a new one. One of the bikes actually had it's battery stolen to power the 7...

 

Again I might be corrected on Duratecs as I'm not familiar with them at all but I have ran into pretty major issues with OBD2 and NY on my 2001 Zetec that's titled as such. There is pretty much no reasonable way for me to ever pass a regular inspection with all the emissions in place. It would require a new harness, stock ECU (Pectel in mine right now), EVAP container in place (had it in the car, not hooked up, took it out), downstream o2 sensor hooked up, etc. Most of OBD2 systems are really emissions systems and Caterhams don't typically have these units in cars. 

 

My only NY plan is to apply for an exception which is on a back burner at this moment. I have seen other NY registered Caterhams so maybe Duratecs have some kind of better system in place. Not sure how they get around it. There is one for sale right now on the forum. @WinstonS has a specialty registration exception it seems

 

With that said, I haven't been bothered by police in regards to my inspections. Only battle has been DMV registrations so far. 

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@VovchandrI’m not sure of the requirements in Vermont, but the only way to legally register a newly purchased Caterham (or any other type of component vehicle/kit car) in NY is to go the “specially constructed vehicle” route. The main requirement for doing this is to show to the NY DMV that the drivetrain was purchased from a separate source than the rest of the car. My car that’s for sale on this site was registered this way by the previous owner, a former Caterham dealer, but I registered a Shelby Cobra continuation car the same way back in 2007, so I am fairly familiar with the process.

This method does require jumping through a few hoops, but as long as you have all the required receipts in place and follow the DMV’s instructions precisely, it’s fairly straightforward. Once completed, the car will be assigned a state issued VIN and will be emissions exempt for the life of the vehicle, as long as it remains in NY. I know MIchigan, and I think California has a similar provision.

You can can contact the DMV in Albany to request the application documents and for help on whether your Caterham would qualify. From my experience, they are surprisingly quite helpful.

Hope this helps!

 

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Correct.   The Caterham will have a J1962 plug which looks like OBD2 but it is not.  The stock Caterham ECU produces CAN data format but does not produce OBD2 readable data and never will.  So no OBD2 scanner will ever read it.  

 

So if the DMV wishes to test emissions it will need to do it via tailpipe sensor.  

 

Easimap will let you "read" the data from the ECU real time but will not let you modify it as it is locked with a password.

 

Anyway, a replica or kit car approach to registration in VT should allow you to bypass this.  Ask how a Cobra replica would go through the process - you would need to follow their approach.

 

P2226 error code is exactly as you found it on L7C.  To remove it you need the SBD upgrade kit for a separate sensor - they will be able to confirm in a phone call.  That will just make it run a little better but its unlikely you would notice the difference.  May have an emissions impact though. 

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On 6/19/2021 at 5:16 PM, SK400 said:

Two potential issues from what we've gleaned from other members going through this experience as we speak... 

1) there is apparently a special map for more modern caterhams that have an external fuel pump module somewhere in the rear.  For those catehams, apparently you don't need the green injectors, the blue will suffice. 

2) there might be a wiring harness difference between your more modern caterham and older ones. Number of active pins etc. 

 

Looks like you don't have the right map on your ECU.. either because of the fuel module feature (sending way too much gas that it needs to) or the wrong map for the wiring harness you have.   

 

Blake, Simon, and others I'm sure can opine.. 

 

Dumb question - I just replaced an internal pump with an external one on my 420R  - do I need to change something on the injector or ECU?

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@sf4018Graham is right - not normally.  However, there is a setting in the Caterham ECU map for fueling by batch or sequential - that may come into play.  Secondly, in some cars being lately upgraded from 420 to R500 they have been finding that they needed to change injectors to work with the upgraded ECU map.  So the Caterham ECU seems to interact in the fueling process beyond just the fuel pressure regulator but its not exactly clear to me why/how?   

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Thanks Vovchandr, WinstonS, and Croc for the replies. - Amazing how cars have changed in my 36 years since tinkering with my Europa. Simple would be an understatement.

The amount of sensors and electronics seems never ending today. Thanks for the hints, I guess I must re-register the vehicle somehow and hope for the best. I just got my new license plate too. — @ Vovchandr - sorry to hear your 7 is not active. We'll meet up at sometime for sure.

 

 

IMG_1231.jpeg

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5 hours ago, Grog said:

@Pokey - Sure, any particular angle? - There are some in the link below, let me know if you need any others.

 

 

Thank you @Grog.  This is both interesting and confusing.  I've researched all of the options for a cage, or at least I thought I had.  What you have looks like a Superlight with the double D's, and a Trackday with the front hoop and no side impact bars.  I don't suppose you have any information on the cage, maybe what Caterham called it on the build sheet?

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