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Discussion Starter #1
I have been doing a lot of testing and playing with the Ignitech TCIP4 units recently.

The units are much better and much more flexible than I had previously realized...I am a big fan!

As a result of this and my ongoing discussions and Q&A with Jan and Jiri at Ignitech I got them to send me an editable version of their manual and I have:

  1. Improved the English...a little
  2. Added some basic info on how ignition systems work and the theory of optimizing ignition timing
  3. Added some detail on how the unit works
  4. Added more detail on the documented features
  5. Documented some of the previously undocumented features, some of which have been added with the latest firmware release for the version 80 units
  6. Added a few tips and cleared up a few mysteries.
If anyone wants a free copy of this they can just email me, and I will send them a copy, all I ask is that you respect my copyright on the new original material I have added.

[email protected]
 

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Hi Liam,
firstly, thanks for the copy of your manual. I am away at the moment and not seen what Ignitech actually sent. It sits with my mechanic who is currently re-wiring. I will be home on Easter Monday.

You have put some serious work into that, and addressed all the issues I read about the TCIP4 over the various forums.

I will get a chance to sit down and go through it all next week and give you some feedback, but from the quick peruse I just had,

WELL DONE!

:D

Cheers,

Bez
 

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Thanks Liam for the manual!
I found it a very good read because I´m not too familiar with ignition systems and it made me understand some important things (electricity is a mystery to me:confused:).

I guess it´s not possible to say exactly how to programme the Ignitech for different engine modifications like mine engine:944 hc, headporting, podfilters, full exhaust, dynacoils?!
Need to do that in a dyno and do a lot of testing?

Thanks again / Håkan
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Liam do Ignitech make a unit suitable for the 900SSie ?
They make ones that will do both the ignition map and fuel injection. You would really need a dyno to set up the fueling. However it is quite likely they already have a default map for the 900SSie. Send Jan or Jiri and email and ask them if they have a unit and good defaulat map for your bike.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
It seems that when Ducati originally threw together the 900SS bikes they kidnapped the designer of the ignition system from the renowned 1970's Italian Prigwonstardi lawn mower! No one had told him about the invention of throttle position sensors so he never thought to include one.

So I have been in my not so secret lab again.

I have now grafted a Hella Throttle Position Sensor onto a set of FCR carburettors and hooked this up via a modified throttle shaft and interconnecting spindle.

Below are some photos of the bike with the throttle position sensor mounted on the FCR carburettors. Sorry I didn't take clearer pics of the mounting system before I installed it. Next time I have the carburettors off I will take some better pictures of the mounting components and modified throttle shaft.

I have hooked the TPS up to the Ignitech ignition system.

Theory says that can I can now retard the timing at full throttle enough to prevent detonation/pregnition at full throttle and still have the ideal advance at part throttle. I previously felt the that my timing was a compromise between these two requirments. I ran a little more advance than was safe and was always had to be very cautious with using full throttle - particularly at the higher revs.

Still fine tuning the ignition map, however from my seat of the pants dyno it feels like a big improvement, Bike seems much keener now at part throttle particularly when opening the throttle from cruising at low throttle openings (E.g. when accellerating to overtake a car) and for the first time I can hold it on full throttle at the higher revs (I have discovered that the bike has a little more at the higher revs than I ever suspected.)

The bikes exhaust is running much cleaner and I suspect I am now running a little lean in the mid range so I will need to re adjust the carbs again.

.....but of course it all just a delusion until I prove it on a dyno. I have one more mod planned (any one in NZ got some old exhausts I can experiment on with my TIG welder?) before I bother tuning the carbs and ignition map for maximum performance on the dyno.

Can't wait until I come across the next Honda CT110. I'll show them!
 

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Hey Fastbikegear what settings are you using on your FCR's needle type ,clip position, main jet, slow jet etc?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Hey Fastbikegear what settings are you using on your FCR's needle type ,clip position, main jet, slow jet etc?
Probably should put this carburettor stuff in another thread? But it does interelate with timing.

At the moment I am using totally standard Sudco recommendations as below and they are not too far wrong for my modified engine.

Fuel screw 3/4 turn
Slow Air Screw 1-1/2 turns
Float height 9mm
Main Jet 155
Main Air Jet 200
Slow Jet 60
Needle EMT
Needle Clip 3rd from top

However a few weeks ago (before installing the TPS) I rode the bike with a mates NGK wide band lambda sender in each exjuast pipe and a display unit on the dash and discovered I was rich at idle, good on cruising throttle and rich near full throttle 11.7:1. Ideally I am looking for 13:1 +/- 0.3 if I can get it right across the rev range.

I also observed that advancing and retarding the timing made quite big differences to the air/fuel ratio.

I have a feeling that with my TPS map that the readings will be quite a bit leaner across the range. The exhaust is certainly much cleaner. I will refit the lambda sensors in a couple of weeks when I have made my new exhaust.

When I had the lambda sensors in I found that two cylinders on the FastBikeGear project bike had fairly similar air/fuel ratios, but on my mates 900SS using the same measuring set up, he found that while both carbs were initially set up with the same jets etc, that the fuel/air ratios were very different for each cylinder. He changed the jetting in his CV carbs to get near perfect 13:1 in both cylinders and swears the bike is running way better. I can confirm having followed his bike which now has very well set up CV carbs, hi-comp pistons and aftermarket ignition that it goes extremely well!

My mate has several Ducatis with the CV carbs and he found that the carbs were all over the place on all of his bikes. He also found that he needed to setup each carb with different jets to get the same readings from each exhaust and when he set up both carbs to give near 13:1 air/fuel readings in both exhausts the bikes went much much better. I suspect that the CV carbs are pretty good if you set them up properly but most of us don't bother and just switch to FCRs as great addittional expense.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for all the feedback from the people who requested a copy of the manual.

I have now incorporated the good feedback received so far.

I also got asked to supply the last section on optimizing ignition timing to maximize power for one of the club magazines, so I took the opportunity to extend and improve this section.

I have also added some brief stuff on using a Throttle Position Sensor with the Ignitech unit, which I have recently done to our project bike and got much better results than expected.
 

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Has anyone else experienced an Ignitech TCIP4 failure recently?

I remember the high failure rate right after these first came out, and how it took quite a bit of time before the problem was traced back to using non-resistor plugs, or mounting the box too close to the coils.

I've had an Ignitech in my Paso for maybe 3 years. (Electrically nearly identical to my '92 900ss) Probably only put 1,500 miles on it in that time. Always used resistor plugs. Box is mounted at least 3 feet away from the coils, in the tail storage area. Bike has developed a bad miss when it warms up, after 15-20 miles. Reinstalling a set of Kokusan BB1105 boxes confirmed it was the box.

I'm hoping this is a fluke, and that not all Ignitech boxes will fail, as I would like to get another but don't want to repeat this problem in 3 more years.

Does anyone know if there were any improvements made to the design since those early boxes?
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Has anyone else experienced an Ignitech TCIP4 failure recently?

I remember the high failure rate right after these first came out, and how it took quite a bit of time before the problem was traced back to using non-resistor plugs, or mounting the box too close to the coils.

I've had an Ignitech in my Paso for maybe 3 years. (Electrically nearly identical to my '92 900ss) Probably only put 1,500 miles on it in that time. Always used resistor plugs. Box is mounted at least 3 feet away from the coils, in the tail storage area. Bike has developed a bad miss when it warms up, after 15-20 miles. Reinstalling a set of Kokusan BB1105 boxes confirmed it was the box.

I'm hoping this is a fluke, and that not all Ignitech boxes will fail, as I would like to get another but don't want to repeat this problem in 3 more years.

Does anyone know if there were any improvements made to the design since those early boxes?
Have you checked your pickups with a scope to make sure your miss is not being initiated by a bad pick up?

Have you contacted Ignitech with your fault systems. I got a miss in one of our units once and boot loading the firmware again solved the problem. Ignitech can give you the boot loading firmware to do this.

New units have advanced features and options. Not sure if they had a hardware upgrade but suspect so.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I have just updated the FastBikeGear unofficial Ignitech manual to cover the very latest release of software. The latest software now adds another dwell setting option.

The latest version of the manual is version 5.

If you want a free copy just email me [email protected] and I will email it back to you.

The FastBikeGear unofficial Ignitech manual is an improved English version of the IGNITECH factory manual. It has slightly better English, a lot more detail and explanation and it covers many of he new features added to the TCI-P4 units in recent years.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Has anyone else experienced an Ignitech TCIP4 failure recently?

I remember the high failure rate right after these first came out, and how it took quite a bit of time before the problem was traced back to using non-resistor plugs, or mounting the box too close to the coils.
I have sold an installed quite a few of these and followed all the recommended guidelines ( as per location near coils and resistive HT side) and so far no warranty claims. I have had one unit corrupt BOTH it's firmware and .ign configuration file.. But I reloaded the firmware and then recreated the .ign file from scratch and it's been fine ever since.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I have noticed that the voltage supply input into the ignition modules (Kukosan or Ignitech) often drops below 12 volts and this effects the running of the bike. I had previously installed an old relay I found sitting in the workshop to power the ignition modules on our project bike, but it failed about a year later and the bike consequently stopped at a most in opportune time. (There was probably a reason this relay was sitting in the workshop...I should have used a new one!)

Shortly afterwards I installed the of the very clever Dutch Ultrabatt Lithium batteries in the bike the input voltage to the ignition increased marginally so I never bothered to getting around to replacing the faulty relay.

The ignition power supply on our bikes takes a convoluted journey through the ignition switch, kill switch, fuses, etc and consequently there is a reasonable voltage drop.

Today as an experiment I finally got around to installing a new relay to power the Ignitech in the project bike. Because relays eventually all fail I wired it in parallel with the existing ignition feed so if the relay fails the bike won't cut out at a dangerous moment!

Of course wiring it in parallel meant that it was self latching and when I turned off the key the bike kept running. Easy fix for this was a diode.

It will be interesting to see if there is any improvement in the way the bike runs when I get a chance to go for a test ride. If there is a noticeable improvement I will add the details to the free FastBikeGear version of the Ignitech manual.
 

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I had (and still have) an issue with corrupting the files; When I use my preferred laptop, a 10" Samsung notebook, running Windows 7, the ignitech software doesn't quite run right (and unless I load a ready-made file will always default to Honda VFR as the bike setting - leaving me unable to change it?) and when I load the settings to the Ignitech it runs really bad with loads of scatter.

If I use another laptop it's fine (even a 13 yr old Sony running Win Me) but with this original laptop setup the bike was popping & farting and only made 60hp, as soon as I used a different PC it runs smooth and makes 90hp.

Don't know why this laptop doesn't run it properly and it's a shame as I bought this laptop specifically for this type of work as it's easy to carry and not worth too much if it gets dropped.

I emailed Ignitech but they hadn't seen this problem before either.

The moral of this story is that some PCs seem to have problems with the Ignitech software...
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Don't know why this laptop doesn't run it properly and it's a shame as I bought this laptop specifically for this type of work as it's easy to carry and not worth too much if it gets dropped.

I emailed Ignitech but they hadn't seen this problem before either.

The moral of this story is that some PCs seem to have problems with the Ignitech software...
Try opening and comparing the .ign files on each PC with a basic text editor and check they look identical. If your not sure hew to do this you can email them to me and I will check them for you.
 
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