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V3 MicroSquirt® - QuickStart Guide
General Automotive Wiring Guidelines
There are a number of tools and techniques you will need to wire MicroSquirt® to your vehicle. You will also need some specialized knowledge. We will try to present an overview of everything you need here (if you have questions, ask them on the forums at www.microsquirt.com):
- Crimper: These come in a wide variety of styles and quality, and you often get what you pay for. The cheapest are stamped from flat steel, and these often distort (the jaws slip off each other) before a good crimp is made. As a minimum, it is worth getting a forged steel crimper that has wide jaws (~½") that hold the butt splice connectors in place while the connector is crimped, resulting in a strong and reliable joint. These can be found for around $20 or so. Remember that you will be relying on these connections every minute you are driving your vehicle, and under all conditions. You will want them to be as solid as possible, as deficient connections are often difficult to troubleshoot.
- Multimeter: You will need a digital (or analog) multi-meter that can check potential (Volts), current (Amps), and resistance (Ohms). You do not need an expensive meter as you will be mostly checking to see if things are approximately correct, and lower cost digital multi-meters (DMM) can often be found for under $20.
- Lighter/heat source: This is handy for shrinking heat shrink tubing over butt splice connectors or solder joints. You can do it with matches, but this will be slow and sometimes painful. For a heat source, you can use a cigarette lighter (in well ventilated conditions well away from any gasoline), or a heat gun that blows hot air.
- Vehicle Wiring Diagram: You will need to know which wires go where on your vehicle in order to connect MicroSquirt® appropriately. The best wiring diagrams and other information are generally found in a factory service manual for your vehicle, but of course there are other sources (aftermarket manuals, Internet, etc.).
- Soldering Iron or Gun (optional): If you choose to solder wires together , rather than using butt splice connectors, you will need a soldering iron or gun. This should be rated to at least 25 Watts, as smaller irons may not heat the joint hot enough to provide a good connection. Before using the iron/gun, plug it in and let it heat up for several minutes to help ensure good connections.
- Wire: to extend the supplied pigtail as and when necessary. For the injector or ground leads, this should be at least 18 gauge wire, for the remaining connections 20 or 22 gauge is sufficient (large gauge numbers mean thinner wire).
- Heat shrink tubing: This can be used in short section to cover soldered or crimped connections to make them more 'weather proof' and give additional mechanical strength to the connection.
- Connectors: These can be butt-splice connection to join wires (such as the supplied harness pigtail to a vehicle harness), or specific connectors for things like injectors, sensors, and ignition modules, etc. Crimp-style butt splice connectors are supplied with MicroSquirt® to join the harness to connector pigtails for external components. MicroSquirt® does not come with the external connectors you need, since there are thousands of different types, a many users will already have these as part of their OEM installation in any case. If you need specific connectors, try an auto parts store or one of the MicroSquirt® distributors.
- Solder (optional): You can solder the wires instead of using butt splice connectors. Use standard 60/40 rosin core solder (silver solder is not required).
- Nylon ties: These are very useful to make sure wiring isn't dangling loose, and can't contact moving or hot vehicle components. Make sure you allow some slack when wiring between the engine and body/frame, as they move relative to each other, sometimes quite a bit (up to several inches).
- Electrical tape: This can be used in the place of heat shrink tubing, and even nylon ties. It is also useful for 'wrapping' sections of harness wiring to keep it tidy and bundled.
- Fuel injection system components: MicroSquirt® controller is just the controller, so you will need injectors, fuel pump, coolant and air temperature sensors, a throttle position sensor, a MAP sensor, an O2 sensor (optional but helpful), a fast idle valve (optional), and a number of relays, fuses, and other automotive electrical components to suit your application.
Of course you will also need a PC computer to run the tuning software. Any computer that can run Java will work. Ideally the computer will have a serial port (9-pin male connector), but many USB/Serial adapters have been used successfully.
If you have any questions or problems that can't be answered from the links above, or a search the MicroSquirt® manual:
you can ask questions at the MicroSquirt® support forum which is at: www.microsquirt.com Click the links for more information.
MegaSquirt® and MicroSquirt® controllers are experimental devices intended for educational purposes.
MegaSquirt® and MicroSquirt® controllers are not for sale or use on pollution controlled vehicles. Check the laws that apply in your locality to determine if using a V3 MicroSquirt® or MicroSquirt® controller is legal for your application.
©2011 Bruce Bowling and Al Grippo. All rights reserved. V3 MicroSquirt® and MicroSquirt® are registered trademarks. This document is solely for the support of V3 MicroSquirt® boards from Bowling and Grippo.