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HOWTO: Find compatible strategies and how to change strategy successfully.


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NOTE - This requires the "workshop edition" or "one car workshop edition" of the software to utilise the strategy browser.

Problem: You have a vehicle where the ZF transmission calibration is not in the stock database and you do not have a stock read.

Problem: You want to find the 'latest' release of a calibration for a given model of vehicle. Eg where Ford fixed various tuning issues (shift maps, air conditioner, improved idle stability etc).

Wrong Solution: Pick a random strategy from a similar vehicle you recently tuned and flash it in.

If you use any random operating system or strategy, the vehicle may go into a limp mode due to an ABS mismatch, or the gear ratios and shift patterns may be incorrect. There may also be a different set of system switches configured making the vehicle throw various DTCs, or certain functionality does not work correctly.

Correct Solution:

Use the strategy list to find a matching strategy from the same (not similar, but the same) model of vehicle. The main parameters that determine if a vehicle is the same model are the following:

  • Axle/Trans configuration (AWD, Sedan, Ute etc)
  • Tyre rev/mph (Tyre size - This ensures its the same level trim vehicle)
  • TCM Calibration Level (only applicable for ZF Automatics - This specifies the matching ZF calibration shift strategy)
  • Diff Ratio (Diff ratio changes between auto/manuals and can also change in some other models)
  • Turbo Logic (Turbo or Super Charged model)
  • Engine Capacity (different motor)
  • Injector slopes (indicates injector change and hence also likely a turbo change)
  • Average max load spark (indicates a compression or turbo change, a good example is the 2V and 3V 5.4L v8s)
  • PCM Module Type (IO configuration of the PCM itself)

Providing these numbers match you can be confident you have found the same model of vehicle. To assist this we first find the original strategy or base strategy that is currently in the vehicle via the strategy browser.

First open the strategy list via Calibration Tools -> Show Falcon Calibration List

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We have chosen B8BG as our example as it is an automatic vehicle however we lack the stock TCM strategy in our database. Returning this vehicle to stock is difficult if the TCM has been replaced (eg you do not have the original read) hence we need to upgrade to the latest calibration.

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First right click on any of the columns and select Filter Editor

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We have only added 3 items to filter on in this example. However you can make the filter as broad or specific as you require. You may be doing a turbo conversion for example, so it is expected that many of these numbers may not line up. In this example however we expect that all numbers match.

B8BJ can easily be seen to be a good match for this vehicle. The release date is a few months later in the same year, the TCM stock file is present and all other fields match.

The next step is to compare these two strategies by right clicking on B8BG and selecting "Set Compare Strategy"

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Next right click on B8BJ and click Compare with  B8BG

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Next browse the differences that Ford have made between the two calibrations to see what stands out. The first places to check are DTC controls and System Switches.

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We can see here in B8BG we have a MIL lamp for Engine Oil Temp Sensor Low. In B8BG we have "No Error" this implies there is a difference in the oil temperature setup in this vehicle. You may wish to copy these changes back. Review any other changes that you believe may be a different feature that the later edition of the vehicle may have had installed that yours did not. Many changes may only relate to different emissions standards as the year changed and can be left alone. Use care and do not blindly copy all changes over.

Once you are confident the strategy is the correct one to use we will need to make a stock file.

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Select Create Stock File From Strategy or Catchcode

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Enter the new catchcode/strategy and press "Create and Merge"

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Next press "Load File" and load your original read to populate the VID block, serial and VIN

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Finally press Save/Open File

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Now if the previous car/file was tuned, you may wish to compare against this file and copy any tuned changes back over. To do this press Compare/History and load your previous tuned file

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Press Yes to partial load so you only see your tuned changes and not all of the differences from Ford that we saw earlier.

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In this example we have only changed the injector slopes, so we select these parameters and press apply to copy them back over. Alternatively you can use Ctrl + A to select all. You can also use the keyboard up + down + left + right keys to navigate the changes, press space to select/deselect and item for copying.

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Once you've applied your changes save the file.

Next we recommend scanning your vehicle for DTC codes via Forscan BEFORE flashing the file in so we know if there are any pre-existing faults. Make note if there are.

Next flash the newly made file into the vehicle.

Start the engine and ensure the transmission is not in limp mode (stuck in 3rd gear in a ZF). Check for any fault lights, especially the DSC/ABS lamp.

Finally rescan the vehicle with Forscan and check for any new fault codes, there should be none (except potentially a pending loss of comms or emissions system not ready, these will clear after a drive cycle).

Next drive the vehicle and ensure ABS and cruise control still functions. These are the first things to fail if the strategy is not valid for the ABS/BCM in the vehicle.

Now you have successfully changed the strategy in your vehicle.

Happy tuning!

 

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  • 5 months later...

Update: We have extracted the VID block and matching VID block override scalars for almost all original 2002-2016 Falcons. This means if you have lost your VID block or need original VID block defaults we can likely provide them for you. As Ford do not provide as built data for the Falcon this will hopefully assist some of you. This data is not publicly available (due to it being in a 2gb CSV file) however if there is a demand for it we can look at getting it into the editor for you. Here is an example of VSS_Source for all HACCK strategies.

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21 hours ago, Roland@pcmtec said:

if there is a demand for it we can look at getting it into the editor for you. Here is an example of VSS_Source for all HACCK strategies.

@Roland@pcmtec if you decide to update the calibration list in the editor, could you include columns for
"auF12646 OIL PRES LO OPEN Switch" to filter F6 strategies from XR6T
"auF10999 Manual reverse lock out hardware (solenoid) present" to filter between 5 & 6 Speed manual strategies
 

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23 hours ago, Bill said:

@Roland@pcmtec if you decide to update the calibration list in the editor, could you include columns for
"auF12646 OIL PRES LO OPEN Switch" to filter F6 strategies from XR6T
"auF10999 Manual reverse lock out hardware (solenoid) present" to filter between 5 & 6 Speed manual strategies
 

We actually have exported all stock values of all tables/scalars to a database so we could technically add anything. We have just been resource constrained recently with trying to improve performance and stability. I've wanted to update that list for almost 2 years now! 

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34 minutes ago, hjtrbo said:

@Bill a friendly FYI, average load spark filtered to 9.something will give you all the F6 strategies. 

@hjtrbo if I remember correctly, that was correct for FG only.
I'd looked at that a while ago & if filters were applied to "Forced" "YES" & "Average load spark filtered" " 9.7?", it would only show "PCM Type" "APS-234", so only FG F6.
It excluded ALL BA & BF turbo strategies.

BA F6 is simple because they're all HAAT.

BF F6 requires a bit more effort as I'd found that there were XR6T & F6 that were both 5.8? It may have even applied to all BF turbo including F6.
I started looking at the BF XR6T when I had one with ABS mismatch & oil light issues. It had a PCM replacement that was HACCKC6 F6 instead of HACCHB5 XR6T. I was comparing the files before deciding if I'd revert to stock or change the oil light parameter & reprogram the ABS & saw they shared the same "Average load spark filtered".

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Hot tip. You can do "view all scalars" in a stock file, ctrl + a ctrl + c and paste it into Excel and save as a csv file. Might take you a while but if you do it for all common strategies you are interested in you could probably do it yourself with enough time. Then add all the files as a data source in power query editor (part of Excel) and do a query like that. 

Its essentially what I want to build, it has just never made it up the list in priorities. 

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2 minutes ago, Roland@pcmtec said:

We actually have exported all stock values of all tables/scalars to a database so we could technically add anything. We have just been resource constrained recently with trying to improve performance and stability. I've wanted to update that list for almost 2 years now! 

Whenever time permits mate. Performance & stability trumps this sort of thing

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