xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 14, 2016 10:05 p.m.

Inspired by Tuna55, I am posting my project to GRM for accountability and inspiration in getting this car on the road by spring. I will attempt to do SOMETHING to this car every day.

No more excuses. I have two kids, currently aged 2 and 7, and I spend ~11 hours/day away from home weekdays between commute and work. My wife is also in grad school, so much of the time I am home, I am full time on dad-duty while she hits the books. That said, I need to carve out some time to accomplish something in the garage for my own sanity.

I brought this car home almost two years ago, and haven't touched it in roughly 5 months.

The Car: 1988 VW Golf GL
Engine: 2.0 16V from B3 Passat
Management: Megasquirt II Ver3.0
Underthings: Subframes/Brakes from mk3 Jetta (10.1 rotors / rear disk)

Long Back-story: Sometime back around 2003 I convinced my girlfriend (now wife) to drive with me from Michigan down to Alabama so I could buy a rust free 2.0 ABA 8V swapped '88 Golf GL I found on VWVortex and drive it back to Michigan. It was my ride through the remainder of college, and the car which gave me the username I still use today (ABA being a cross flow head design, intake on front, exhaust on back, as opposed to the earlier counter flow 8V head design). Here it was in its prime gassing up before a MIVE track day at Gingerman in 2004:

I had a blast with the car, but as things go, after graduating in '05, I sold the car to a friend and moved on to another project. It then sold again, and again... and I lost track of it.

Fast forward to 2014, I stumbled upon the car for sale online, running poorly, consuming oil, and with electrical problems, and looking quite rough, rust here and there, etc. I knew it was my old car though. I had to go see it in person...

Yikes! hmmmm... probably a bad idea. Maybe I'll just make a lowball offer. Lowball made. Lowball accepted. Uh oh. For better or worse, it was mine again:

So it began. Again.

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 14, 2016 10:06 p.m.

The Donor:

A short while before buying the white mk2 back, I had bought another acquaintance’s old abandoned project, which had been sitting in his parents pole barn for 8 years and needed to go away quickly for way too cheap. Before buying the white mk2 I thought I might make this car into a track rat as it was a beater of an old mk2 GTI, but I knew it would be better used as a donor. It didn’t run, but it had a 2.0 16V from a B3 auto Passat, 5- speed Trans, and an incompletely setup Megasquirt along with a nice pile of parts. In a small world twist, it's an engine I actually yanked from the Passat originally and sold to the owner of this car over a decade ago.

After a few free nights, I yanked the drivetrain.

I inventoried the rest of the car and sorted through the keep/sell/scrap remainings.

I tried to give it away, hoping somebody would give it a home to turn into anything... 1/2 trailer, BBQ, lemons car, whatever, but in the end it became crusher fodder.

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 14, 2016 10:07 p.m.

So the plan is to yank the tired ABA, and install the 2.0 16V. In the process I'll clean things up a bit, rewire some things, and then use the car to learn Megasquirt tuning.

From 2, make 1, on a low budget.

Yanked the ABA out of the white car:

Rolled the turd outside for some degreasing. A little Simple Green and Awesome cleaner, and a little elbow grease. Much better. Good enough for me.

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 14, 2016 10:08 p.m.

Putting humpty back together again:

The 16V going back in the car was gone through before I bought it. The head is freshened up, and it already had a fuel rail and basics to make the Megasquirt operational. That said, there’s always odds and ends to sort out when doing a swap. The clutch was fresh, and the trans supposedly good, so I left it alone.

The white car has a power steering rack as part of the mk3 subframe, and it previously had a mk3 2.0 ABA complete with PS pump running it, but now the 16V going into the car was set up racecar style, with an alternator only (no A/C, no PS pump, etc.)

In the spirit of the low budget build this is, I created my own "Power Steering bypass loop" by cutting off and reshaping a chunk of the existing lines, flaring the ends, and connecting with some chunks of the old hose. I’ve heard it works fine, we’ll see.

Also, I set out to improve the motor mounts since this would primarily be a track car. Only the finest Czech Republic vulcanized rubber would do. I used a serrated knife and cut out the insert of the rear mount to size, then carefully wedged/prybarred/sledgehammered two hockey pucks into the mount to replace the blown out rubber (cut out chunk seen on the right)

I ran to the DIY RaceCar Parts HQ (aka Home Depot) and found a chunk of pipe of the same ID to replace the steel insert. I used a wood boring blade one size too small and ran a hole through the pucks. I cut the pipe chunk to the same length as the original sleeve, and then ran it through the pucks with my trusty sledgehammer. It was all firm and tight, but I figured sealing it all up with Polyurethane adhesive couldn't hurt, so here's the finished product (before a coat of paint):

With the mounts and rack sorted, I wheeled the drivetrain back in the hole, and bolted it up!

I swapped the mk2 front mount to the mk3 crossmember and mount, and stacked up a few hockey pucks, errr.... Canadian race mount there as well in place of the factory mount.

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 14, 2016 10:10 p.m.

Exhausting.

I had a good friend help restore a downpipe for use, because a new Techtonics header cost more than I had into the entire project so far. Little torch work, and some new studs, and it was good to go.

The upside of working really slowly…. I ended up finding a used Eurosport exhaust setup off a local VW forum from a guy who was parting out a car. The seller said he also had a header that came off the car I could have for a few bucks more. I glanced it over, it was stupid cheap, so I took that home as well.

After looking it over, and spending too much time online (that’s always easier than actually working on a car…) my research told me what I had was in fact a Techtonics 4-1 race header. Woohoo! So that replaced my freshly restored and installed downpipe.

After test fitting the pipe sections, I bought a new flex pipe and had it welded up, ordered new hangers, and gave it all some paint.

Couple boxes from Jegs and a few hours later, we have exhaust!

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 14, 2016 10:40 p.m.

The engine/trans/axles are all physically bolted in the car. I've sourced and sorted 90% of the hoses, hooked up heater core, water pipes, etc.

The wiring is still a disaster, and this is where I ran out of knowledge. The Megasquirt intimidated me, and I hit a standstill. Then 5 months go by, and boxes and things start piling on top of the car. My knowledge ran into an end on the Megasquirt. The more I read, the more confused I seemed to get.

The engine supposedly idled once on MS, but then never again, and that was 5+ years ago.

I figured my best bet was to go step by step as if I was building the board from scratch and verify everything is correct as the tutorials say it should be built. So, the next several days will likely be based on MS research and head scratching and question asking.

So I’m guessing the simplest way, and the way this was likely set up, was per the instructions on “how to megasquirt your water cooled vw”: How to Megasquirt your VW

Since I have the MS-II PCBv3.0 it appears mostly straight forward. Starting with that link as a guide, I’m verifying this is done physically on the board which you can see visually on the attached PowerPoint for “#” reference points. There’s a few things I am confused by:
• Build the Hall effect input conditioner circuit, …. All our preassembled MegaSquirts with the V3.0 board come with this circuit installed.
• Jumper TachSelect to OptoIn. DONE #1
• Jumper TSEL to OptoOut. DONE #2
• Jumper XG1 to XG2. DONE #3
• You'll need a 1K pull-up resistor from the 5 volts in the proto area to TachSelect. ??? Nothing in Proto Area
• Jumper JS10 to IGBTIN. DONE (long white wire) #5
• Install a BIP373 or TIP120 in the Q16 slot, using a mica insulator. DONE BIP373 #6
• Jumper IGBTOUT to IGN. DONE #7
• Add a 1K pull-up to 5 volts by connecting a 1K resistor from the IGBTOUT-IGN jumper to a 5 volt supply from the proto area. ???? Nothing in Proto Area

Back of board:

Which leads me to some confusion. Why is nothing in the proto area? Is that just something specific to the DIYAutoTune boards as opposed to the built from scratch board mine likely was? Is that Q16 location either of the items listed or something else?

Going back to the MegaManual itself, reading additional info on my specific board: http://www.megamanual.com/ms2/V3assemble.htm

In reading Part 50 (Input Circuits for Tach Signal), it appears this board is wired for Hall per step 50.a.
I verified all steps are present on the board 50.a.i-viii (including jumpers for D1 & D2: #9)

In reading the above ^, I can assume this board is NOT wired for VR per part 51, because there is nothing wired per that description (i.e. R42, R55, R44, R53, R54, etc.)

I also need to order or buy a cable so I can hook the MS to my laptop. I also eventually need to order a wideband O2 sensor, or buy the setup you can build into the MS box. I may also need to buy/build a stim so I can actually test this MS box too.

So that brings us to where we are today. So close, yet so far away.

de80q New Reader
Jan. 15, 2016 7:38 a.m.

Nice project! I have an Audi 80 quattro with a 10v turbo engine running on MS2 currently(soon to be MS3X). Unfortunately I cant help much with the board setup, a friend of mine built mine specifically for my engine.

How do you plan to have the MS read timing? Are you just going to use the ignition dizzy or is there another option? Mine currently runs on the 5 window dizzy, but will be going to a 60-2 wheel, and single window dizzy as a cam sensor.

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 15, 2016 9:25 a.m.
de80q wrote: Nice project!

Thanks!

de80q wrote: How do you plan to have the MS read timing? Are you just going to use the ignition dizzy or is there another option? Mine currently runs on the 5 window dizzy, but will be going to a 60-2 wheel, and single window dizzy as a cam sensor.

For now I'm just going to use the ignition distributor. I don't really know the ins and outs yet of the 60-2 wheel advantage, or how I'd even go about doing that.

I guess at this point I just want to get it running with buying the least parts possible. It seems adequate to use the hall effect signal, at least for now.

de80q New Reader
Jan. 15, 2016 10:22 a.m.

In reply to xflowgolf:

No doubt about that. The distributor will do fine for now. One thing you will notice is that your timing will be quite jumpy. Has a lot to do with the way the distributor gear meshes with the cam. You can get it to run and drive just fine with it though.

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 15, 2016 4:26 p.m.

well per my previous post, it looks like my next step is getting two 1K pullup resistors.

"You'll need a 1K pull-up resistor from the 5 volts in the proto area to TachSelect."
"Add a 1K pull-up to 5 volts by connecting a 1K resistor from the IGBTOUT-IGN jumper to a 5 volt supply from the proto area."

For some reason neither of these were done on my MS Board. Can anyone elaborate as to why perhaps not to, and/or why/how I need to?

I found a decent explanation why this is recommended on the VW 16V setup here: Adding a 'Pullup Resistor' to the ignition input ...and while this explanation makes sense it's a different method in how to achieve that result than what is described on the diyautotune VW tutorial.

Anybody know of a good source to order individual bits like this online? Does Radio Shack still sell these kind of bits individually?

I’m guessing I need to jumper from these two holes circled in red next to +5V to here? Can somebody confirm?

2K4Kcsq HalfDork
Jan. 17, 2016 9:02 a.m.

The pull up resistor is needed so the weak signal coming from the shutter wheel inside the distributor can be seen and used for ignition timing. It can be bought at RadioShack if you still have one. They closed them all over here I went thru the same thing on my megasquirt. Without that resistor the computer doesn't really know where the engine is. Also a good time to pop the cap on the distributor and verify it's a fixed 4 window.

I've never personally touched an ms2 but they aren't too different from ms1 or ms3.

I look forward to seeing this thing run! Megasquirt can be daunting and may even seem hopeless at times but you must stick it thru to the end. The car will thank you by running harder and faster than it ever could on CIS.

As a fellow VAG megasquirter I can't wait to see more.

2K4Kcsq HalfDork
Jan. 17, 2016 9:05 a.m.

Also the proto area is empty because it's used for any unknown circuit that needs a +5v source. It can be used for lots of things. Just make sure you tap into the +5 spot, not the blank square of holes.

XLR99 HalfDork
Jan. 17, 2016 9:12 a.m.
xflowgolf wrote:

I assume your son was not on the scrap list!

Does your HOA require you to only drive VW products? Looks like the neighbors are also VW people

Subscribed, looks to be a great project!

NOHOME PowerDork
Jan. 17, 2016 9:41 a.m.

Still recall taking my own car-hobby sabbatical during the career-kid-house phase of live.

The same need for "Me" time dragged me back to the garage where I manage to spend ten hours a week.

ssswitch HalfDork
Jan. 17, 2016 11:33 a.m.

Looks like you've got a pretty reasonably sized project going. That header is a really nice-looking piece.

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 17, 2016 9:59 p.m.
2K4Kcsq wrote: ... Also a good time to pop the cap on the distributor and verify it's a fixed 4 window.

Thanks for the tip! I pulled the cap off tonight and it does look to be a four window. I was a bit concerned to notice a zip tie had been installed holding the hall sensor in place. I'd imagine it'd work fine, but I'll add it to the list to replace if I stumble upon a replacement.

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 17, 2016 10:09 p.m.
2K4Kcsq wrote: Also the proto area is empty because it's used for any unknown circuit that needs a +5v source. It can be used for lots of things. Just make sure you tap into the +5 spot, not the blank square of holes.

Good to know. Thanks for confirming!

XLR99 wrote:
xflowgolf wrote:

I assume your son was not on the scrap list!

Does your HOA require you to only drive VW products? Looks like the neighbors are also VW people

Subscribed, looks to be a great project!

Ha, he did get a kick out of watching the big forklift scoop it up at the scrap yard.

As for the HOA, we do have one, but it seems to be enforced more as an actual "as needed" basis for exceptionally egregious situations (not the anal micro analyzing tattle tale scenarios you read about).

I definitely have brought some of the rattiest cars into the 'hood, but I generally keep them in the garage and out of sight. Luckily, yes the neighbor right across from me is a VAG guy and gets a kick out of the project, and he's had a number of GTI's over the years. His wife drives a Q5, kids have GTI/Jetta, and he's got a nice 25th Edition Audi S4.

tuna55 MegaDork
Jan. 17, 2016 10:10 p.m.

I am beyond honored to be considered part of the inspiration. Cool car! Cooler story!

I know nothing about VWs and less about mega squirt though.

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 17, 2016 10:14 p.m.
NOHOME wrote: Still recall taking my own car-hobby sabbatical during the career-kid-house phase of live. The same need for "Me" time dragged me back to the garage where I manage to spend ten hours a week.

Yeah I knew I had to make a change to get back at it. Limited time this weekend due to my in-laws being in town.

I made a run to the local Radio Shack. Unfortunately they were sold out of the 1K resistors I needed. Must be a big run of guys building Megasquirt setups. I should be able to find some tomorrow.

I mainly spent time finding the car again, got more organizing and things to put away, but I made a good dent in it. Plus, the MS board I can hopefully finish and test from the warmth of my basement work bench.

de80q New Reader
Jan. 18, 2016 5:06 a.m.

I wouldn't worry too much about the zip tied dizzy connector. That is pretty common, and doesn't hurt the operation. I've had one like that for a long time with no problems.

Paul_VR6 Dork
Jan. 18, 2016 1:08 p.m.

Don't have a ton of free time but this came up in my feed.. use the manuals posted on msextra.com and NOTHING ELSE! If you have questions feel free to post here, but that contains the most recent and relevant information.

Likely it will recommend you use the VR circuit, which may be unpopulated by looking at your board. If not you can use the opto circuit, but it will need different mods, detailed here: http://www.msextra.com/doc/ms1extra/MS_Extra_Ignition_Hardware_Manual.htm#hall the second image "low to high" is what you want to use.

Again any more questions, post em up or email me...

NGTD UltraDork
Jan. 18, 2016 5:59 p.m.

I love old Golf's so I have subscribed to this thread.

Keep it movin!

xflowgolf Dork
Jan. 19, 2016 9:32 a.m.
tuna55 wrote: I am beyond honored to be considered part of the inspiration. Cool car! Cooler story! I know nothing about VWs and less about mega squirt though.

Glad you noticed the thread! Your efforts do not go unnoticed, and are truly inspiring to someone like me who gets overwhelmed by the hurdles in the path of completing a project.

Gotta start somewhere!

Paul_VR6 wrote: Don't have a ton of free time but this came up in my feed.. use the manuals posted on msextra.com and NOTHING ELSE! If you have questions feel free to post here, but that contains the most recent and relevant information.

I've been reading through the manual. Time consuming, but I agree it's the best place to start right now.

Paul_VR6 wrote: Likely it will recommend you use the VR circuit, which may be unpopulated by looking at your board. If not you can use the opto circuit, but it will need different mods, detailed here: http://www.msextra.com/doc/ms1extra/MS_Extra_Ignition_Hardware_Manual.htm#hall the second image "low to high" is what you want to use. Again any more questions, post em up or email me...

Thanks! Everything else I had read for a 16V VW seems to go without the VR circuit, so I'm going to spend some more time trying to make sense of this. I don't fully understand the difference, or rationale between the two choices yet. I'm sure I'll have more questions in the next few days.

NGTD wrote: I love old Golf's so I have subscribed to this thread. Keep it movin!

Thanks!

Physical work on the car may be a bit slow in the beginning. I'm setting aside "work time" to spend studying/reading the MS manuals and trying to get the board set up functionally first, as that's my biggest next obstacle in moving this project forward.

Contradiction Reader
Jan. 19, 2016 10:02 a.m.

I remember this car from way back in 2005 or early 2006(?) when I bought a set of MK3 BBS GLX wheels from you when we met up in Chicago. This is AutoX-FIB from the MIVE board and vortex if you recall the user name. Pretty awesome that you managed to get it back and are fixing it up again.

Paul_VR6 Dork
Jan. 19, 2016 4:14 p.m.

In the beginning (V1, 1.1, 2.2) there was only the opto circuit so mods were based around that. Works for coil - triggering, hall setups, etc.

Then with the V3 and V3.57 the VR conditioner arrived for those sensors, but it took awhile to figure out that it can work with the hall senders too with appropriate modifications.

Up to you what you use, but looking at the pics you don't have U7 and the other bits for the VR circuit. Use the mods I posted above and you'll be good. Will work on a dizzy with 12v or 5v feed with appropriate pull up resistor.

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