E-Street 2 Write-up
Okay everyone. I'm going to do my best on a Edelbrock E-Street 2 w/sump tank install write up. I've noticed there is tons of information on FiTech installs, and I thought I'd provide some insight on my experience with the e-street system thus far.
Why I went with this system:
Honestly- the name says it all. This setup allows me to not have to climb under neath my car. I don't have a lift, and I'd say I have basic mechanic skills, nothing exceptional. Also I'd like to point out that my install time due to my skills is usually doubled. The car is meant to be a driver, I have started driving the car much more now, averaged about 4k miles this year, and plan on ending around 6k miles for the year. I really didn't want the car to be in mod-jail for more than a couple of weeks. I thought this would be an ideal time to install the kit due to the extremely hot weather where I live in CA, and well, you know how much fun it is to drive a car without AC in 110 degree weather.
Everything is neatly wrapped, labeled, and specified. The instructions are about 27 pages long, mostly pictures, and directions explained in bullet points. Pretty easy to understand with the exception of a few areas, I'll point those out later. Edelbrock did forget to include my coolant sensor, and the correct tach signal harness. They did ship it to me, but it took over a week because their parts guy left on vacation and didn't get the order until he came back. Doh! It must have been the missing parts guy, because I can't imagine all the shipping stopped for Edlebrock while he was gone.
I spaced everything out within 30 minute to 3 hour timeframes. I have a 2 year old and my wife is pregnant with another little girl, so finding time to wrench can be a challenge! All in all, I'd say it took me 20 hours to have everything properly installed. I'm still adjusting a few things that needed attention on the motor, so I won't count that.
1. Mounting the sump tank:
This is the most difficult part in my opinion. Edelbrock supplies two mounting brackets that bolt directly to the sump tank, that's really it. It's going to take some additional hardware in my opinion to really get the sump to mount. Luckily I had a leftover aluminum radiator bracket that I modified to make the sump tank sit on the diver side of the radiator, not the most ideal location for looks, but it will get the job done. I added in rubber washers to the bracket to aid with energy suspension. Painted everything black, mounted it up, and left it for good. I didn't get around to installing the -6AN fittings until it was time to make the fuel lines, which are Russel twist lock lines. I didn't install the sump wiring until it was time to connect the ECU harness to everything.
2. O2 Sensor
This is pretty straightforward. I didn't have to do anything but call a local exhaust shop to schedule an appointment. The instructions call for the O2 sensor to be installed greater than a 10 degree angle. This can be 45, 90, onboard or outboard, whichever works best. I was changed $60 bucks for the install.
3. Mounting the EFI:
This was pretty simple. I removed my carb and carb spacer and plopped it down. Once I placed it, there wasn't a reason to move it for any other adjustments. I have a 700r4 transmission, so I just left the existing throttle and kickdown bracket on the manifold. The kickdown linkage has 3 plates to connect to the throttle linkage, almost identical to my 650 Holley double pumper. However, it looked the same, but the middle plate didn't want to fit. I decided not to use it, and just used the two outer plates, still secure, and still functions as needed. I did rotate the fuel lines on the TB. The fuel lines would have to make a pretty nasty bend, due to my sump placement, so I rotated the lines 180 degrees to make a nice clean connection later. Additional note: the new EFI is WAY lighter than the carb. Easy to handle with only one hand.
I spent a lot of time figuring out the wiring. My car already had some electrical issues before. I actually ended up sorting them all out by the end of the install. I really wanted to make sure all the connections went to the correct places. There are 4 wires to connect for the whole install, not including the Edlebrock ignition control Distributer, which I installed later. Anyways, there's a positive and a negative for the battery - simple.
There's a 12v when cranking ignition wire. I took some time to figure out my options for this. I looked into plugging it into he fuse box, but eventually went with sharing a connection on the MSD 6AL box for a more permanent solution.
Tach signal wire:
THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT WIRE FOR THE WHOLE INSTALL. Don't overlook it. This wire can be crazy sensitive and can cause 90% of the reported issues for the EFI kit. I had read about the problems on the Edelbrock forums and prayed my car would have a clear tach signal, especially since I have a CDI box. However, I was one of the less fortunate folks and dealt with a variety of tach signal issues.
You have a couple of different options for the tach signal wire, depending on your current setup, or desired setup. I have a CDI box, so I went with those instructions. Note: the instructions call for a gray tach signal wire coming from the CDI box. I have a box from 2004, which had a female tach input connection, no gray wire. Same function, just a different wire for the newer-ish boxes.
Attempt number one: I connected the black and white wire into pin B on the supplied tach signal harness. Cool! Done, right? Nope- the ECU harness had a 4 prong connector, and Edlebrock included the 3 prong connector from their original E-Street kit (come on quality control!!). Told Edelbrock, they got me the parts needed as I mentioned earlier in the post.
Attempt number 2:
Did the same in attempt number one, but now with the 4 prong connector. Extended the white and black wire with some of my leftover wire from my American Auto Wire kit, and then connected that to my tach signal input on the CDI box. Bam! Did as the directions called for, moving along.
Other wiring attempts to be continued later on...
5. Mounting the ECU:
I moved the ECU a total of three times. 1 time due to heat concerns, and the other 2 to clear up my tach signal issues. At first I chose to mount the ECU on the fender next to the CDI box, thinking it would be more convenient to make all the connections, just in case there wasn't enough slack from the harness to make all the connections. I laid everything out to measure beforehand, but I underestimated the amount of generous slack Edlebrock has given to make connections.
Ultimately I mounted the ECU on the passenger side firewall.
6. Coolant sensor install:
The instructions call for the sensor to be installed next to the thermostat. My temp gauge was there, so I moved that over to the driver side head, then installed the coolant sensor in its original place. Don't try to put it elsewhere, it won't give as good of a reading, trust me, I played with this.
7. Mounting the Bluetooth receiver:
The instructions call for the receiver to be mounted under the dash in the middle somewhere. It's also a magnet, so I placed mine by the heater vents (not too close). This connects directly to the ECU harness.
8. Connecting the harness:
The harness is clearly labeled and each connection has a different connector, making it physically impossible to make a wrong connection. Followed the diagrams on the instructions, and made the connections. Done.
I will say, the inline fuse holders and relays don't have much slack, which is my only complaint with the harness. This makes it much more difficult to find an inconspicuous place in the engine bay.
9. Fuel lines:
Edelbrock supplies 8 feet of Russell twist lock fuel lines for the install. They also supply a 50 micron filter, and a 10 micron fuel injection steel filter. I made a bracket for the steel filter that bolts to the sump. Painted it black, and mounted it. Some brass fittings are also included for the fuel pump, but I didn't need them.
I used the existing fuel line from the fuel pump to the 50 micron filter, and then the new Russel lines to the sump, which connects to the clearly labeled "IN" 90 degree -6AN connection. Next I ran a small line to the 10 micron filter, then a lengthier line to the fuel lines on the TB.
NOTE ABOUT TWIST LOCK:
If you don't know anything about twist lock, these lines ******* suck to install!!!
The AN fittings have two barbs. The first one is easy to clear, once you get to the second it suddenly stops. There are tons of nifty ways to install these lines correctly. None of which I knew about prior to my first attempt.
The method I took: freeze the 6AN fitting overnight, hold it in a vice clamp/grip. Heat the Russel fuel hose in boiling water, or with a heat gun (don't make the skin start to bubble!). Lube the fitting, and fuel line with motor oil, then... JAM THAT ***** on there!!! If you don't get very far past that second barb on the first attempt, well then you're pretty much screwed and need to cut it off and start over. A few of my fittings got past the second barb but didn't seat all the way, so far there hasn't been any leaks.
There's a 90 degree vent fitting for the sump take as well. I attached it with a click, fit some old fuel hose I had laying around the garage, then ran it next to the radiator pointing to the ground beneath the frame. So far there hasn't been any strong fuel smell from the vent tube.
Lastly I made my connections for the sump harness to the ECU harness. Edelbrock supplies plenty of wire to make the connections.
10. Priming the system:
Unplug the the sump harness from the ECU, and unplug the coil wire to prevent the motor from starting. I cranked the motor over for 2 20 second intervals to prime the half gallon sump tank. Once the sump tank was primed, if fueled the EFI unit by plugging in the sump harness to the ECU. Without cranking the key fully over, I powered the car by a 1/4 turn with the key to hear the sump pump kick on. I let it run 2-3 times. On the last prime, I started up the tablet...
11. Booting the tablet:
This is pretty self explanatory. Started the tablet, selected the app, then went through the tuning wizard. Engine size, cam size and ignition control pretty much sums up the process. First time starting the motor I didn't have ignition control, so I skipped over that.
12. Starting for the first time:
Holy smokes I was nervous! I double checked all of my electrical and fuel connections, then went to turn the key. Sure enough she fired right up. First things first I had to adjust the idle to match my desired RPM idle. The tablet makes you select your desired RPM, and doesn't let you move to the next step until the motor reaches 170 degrees. The TB has two screws to help you reach the desired RPM idle. In the meantime the motor is making a loud hissing noise from a vacuum hole above the four barrels on top of the unit, really loud! To help the ECU get to the desired idle, I followed the instructions on the Edlebrock website: place a piece of tape on the hissing hole, adjust the screws on the TB until the tablet shows your desired RPMs reached. BAM! Done. Note: if you installed your coolant sensor in a different place, it can take forever for the correct temp to be reached, allowing you to go to the next step on the tablet. I had mine in the back of the manifold at first, no bueno.
13. Take this bad boy out for a ride:
What's next? Well to drive it of course. Pulled out of the garage, and I could tell the ECU is trying to learn, the car is idling high and spluttering. I only took it around the neighborhood, watching the tablet on my lap to make sure everyone is working correctly. Driving around 25 MPH, the setup worked pretty well. I thought, okay, let's go to the street and punch it! Well, what a disappointment that was. I went around the corner and gunned it, only to find the front end falling on itself due to a hesitation and sputter. DAMN! Looking at the tablet I could see the RPMs jumping all over the place. Sure enough, it was the tach signal issues I had dreaded.
Big shoutout to Steve Michelson at Edlebrock. I would call, and he would return my call usually within a few hours. Full of great advice. First thing to look at is the placement of the tach signal wire in the engine bay. Anything from spark plug wires, faulty alternator, bad spark plugs, sharing a tach wire with a tachometer call throw this off. I moved the tach signal wire, moved the ECU to help move the tach signal wire, installed an old alternator, installed new spark plug wires, and.... NOTHING WORKED! Gah! This was frustrating. I have the CDI box, which is the most preferred installation method, and I still didn't have a clear tach signal. I figured hell with it. Time to pony up for the ignition control unit... I wanted it anyways...
15. Ignition Control Unit Install:
This actually was pretty easy. Edelbrock supplies a harness with the kit that just plugs in from the Distributer to the ECU harness. Nothing more clear of a tach signal than that. Dropping on the Distributer is like any other. Lined it up to 12 degrees, activated spark control on the tablet, started the motor, confirmed 12 degrees, then locked it in, and tightened down the Distributer. The ECU is now controlling he ignition.
Took the car out for a test run, and it ran beautifully! Now it just needed some serious driving time to learn.
Obviously the FITECH unit is cheaper, and I didn't discover this until I discovered the forums, after I bought my unit. However, I'm still happy with my purchase.
Edelbrock EFI W/sump kit Part number 3667 $2120 from THMotorsport, free shipping, no tax. Chase new card $175 rebate from opening a new credit card and spending $500 in three months brought this down to $1,945. I then resold my 650 Holley for $300 on Craigslist to recoup some cost, bring me down to $1,645 for the unit.
Edlebrock Ignition Control Distributer: $328
02 install $60
Misc. parts: coolant, thermostat, bolts, nuts, brackets, thermostat gaskets, connectors, alternator wire: $50
All in: $2,083
17. Overall impressions:
This is a nice quality setup that is relatively hassle free (skills and car permitting). I've learned a ton about correctly tuning a car through this process. I've driven about 1000 miles, starts up and goes without any issues. WOT feels good, and AFR at cruise is around 14.7 I'm going to play with it a bit down the road to see how it likes E85. There's a few people running nitrous on this setup, even though Edelbrock says they don't support it. I don't think I will go that route. I will come back periodically and update this thread. Thanks to the folks who answered my forum questions! This is a great community!