LDK turbo powered Caterham 7

TurboWood

New Member
Hello,
I have a semi-new build of a Caterham 7 running an LDK with E39 (LHU) ECM. The car has about 600miles on it now. It's running off the base tune (just modified for standalone). It seems to run just fine, but I need to put it on the Dyno to tune WOT and the external WG. I'm running a GTX2860R on a modified factory manifold.

I'll post some pictures, but I had some questions for this community. Does anyone know a tuner familiar with the E39? I have HPtuners and have done some playing on my own, but it needs an expert.

My second question is about the radiator for the intercooler. From what I can tell the goblin uses a water to air IC (as do I), but the pictures of the radiator make it look small and it looks like it's mounted behind the engine radiator. Is that right? Has anyone tracked a goblin and monitored intake temps? I'm looking for a reference to know if I've sized mine ok.

Regards,
Daniel
 

Waterdriver

Well-Known Member
Hello Daniel,
The supplied heatexchanger is rather small for track duty but I believe suffices for most street use. Single core, 10"x10x2".
The heatexchanger has been mounted by some to the back and to the front of the radiator. DF is now locating it behind and below the radiator, mounted horizontally to a crossmember with a shroud and ducted fresh air intake.

I opted to side mount my HE to keep it away from any heat from the radiator, heatsoak and simplicity. (Scoop still to be added)
20180904_211107.jpg

I wouldn't think that would be an option for your car though.
I would recommend mounting your HE in front of your radiator and spaced from it. You'll want to keep the HE and its contents as cool as possible. As the IATs go up the ECU will start pulling out timing to protect the engine from detonation and start robbing you of horsepower. And we can't have that!
 

Brian74

Well-Known Member
I will be using 2 Derale ~12”x9” 25 row heat exchangers, mounted in the back on each side, mounted above the upper bar where the one in Waterdriver’s photo is. These come with 500 cfm fans and will pull ambient air. Not sure how well they will work. I live in AZ, where summer temps reach over 40 degrees celsius. Not famiar with your car; but I recommend putting it wherever it will pull ambient air and be away from conductive heat.

For tuning, you may want to contact zz performance. They have canned tunes, but if you have HP Tuners and can send them data logs, they can modify the tune to fit. Its not going to be the same as a dyno tune but it should get you in the ballpark. Not familiar with the E39 ECM; most of us are running the E69. I am sure it is probably similar.
 
Last edited:

TurboWood

New Member
Thanks guys! My radiator is mounted in front of the engine radiator (really the only possible location). The core is 21x8" which was the absolute largest thing I could fit in the nose cone. My end tanks are only 3/4" which helped me avoid having end tanks in front of the engine radiator. I haven't updated my computer with new pics in a while, but I think you can get the idea in the attached pic. The radiator for the intercooler is the part with cardboard taped on the front with welded on tubes running around the main radiator. This does mean everything is aluminum and in contact, but the area of contact is small. There are two puller fans mounted on the back of the engine radiator and this gets vented out through a hole in the hood. You can see a black plastic shroud on the far left of the second picture that guides the air up.

The E39 and E69 ECM's actually are quite different. I forget which is which, but one is Bosch and the other something else (Denso, Delphi...I forget). The E39 is completely tunable by HPT which means all the BCM related things could be disabled and truly run in standalone. One down side is it appears relatively few people have actually tuned it. I'm familiar with ZZP, but I would really like someone to be on site for the tune. Another down sides of the E39 is it doesn't use a wide-band O2 like the E69 does. I've considered adding one, but once tuned it shouldn't be needed. I'll obviously need one added on the dyno, but most dyno's have them. The car really does run remarkably well. There is no indication of any issue, but I have no idea how close to any limit I am. I also assume there is quite a bit of power I'm not getting, but as is I can get wheel spin in 3rd if I don't have good road conditions.

Daniel
IMG_2395.JPG
IMG_2669.jpg
 

George

Well-Known Member
Have you considered water injection to remove excess heat injected after the heat exchanger. Also some 0.4mm nozzles spraying on the front mounted radiator. In your dry climate would work wonders.

Brad
 

Brian74

Well-Known Member
That’s interesting about the ECM’s. I read up on them somewhat. The E69 is a Bosch; the E39 is a Delphi. The E69 cannot be run as a stand alone as far as I know because of the VATS, so it needs the antitheft module and BCM. I did read that trifecta may have a way around E69 VATS but did not confirm it; I do know HP tuners cannot disable E69 VATS. I’m not sure if there are any other compatible ECM’s.

Alpha Fab uses the E39 on their 2.0 GDI builds. I’m not sure how much info they would be willing to share with you.

https://www.alphafabindustries.com/products/copy-of-afi-2-0l-lhu-ecotec-stand-alone-engine-harness-ecm


Also about the cooling- I do have a thread I posted a while back for people to discuss their GDI turbo IAT2 temps in various configurations. There are much fewer GDI builds so that information will take some time to acquire.

http://dfkitcar.com/forum/index.php?threads/turbo-goblin-intercooling-and-iat2-temps.766/

Everything I’ve been told is that these engines are prone to heat soak thus boost reduction and timing retard under high ambient heat conditions, so I’m approaching this as cautiously as you.
 
Last edited:

TurboWood

New Member
Waterdriver: yes, dry sump

George: not really, space is a problem.

Brian: You are right. I started down the E69 path (still have an ECM if anyone needs one), but ended up with E39 through alpha fab. I just don’t have a lot of trust with trifecta and it felt like a very long path to having a proper tune. In the end I’m not sure I made the right choice as it took me the better part of a year from first crank to smooth idle. Bad O2 wiring and missing sensors were the root cause. Admittedly I couldn’t spend as much time on it as I wanted, but it was hard to figure out what was causing the issues. I would still consider having alfa tune the car, but we are on other sides of the country.

Daniel
 
Top