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Advantage vs Disadvantage

Discussion in 'EFI Maps and Tuners' started by badinfluence63, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. badinfluence63

    badinfluence63 Well-Known Member

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    I had a chance to pick up a Power Commander for a good price this year. Before commiting I researched the product (asked various mechanics) about the reliability and advantage. I was told unceremoniously by designated service centers for them that they are problems waiting to happen. Why? Because they are built by design to fool the already encrypted HD codes and its not a fail safe/fool proof addition. That was back in July,early August and one place already had to disconnect 5-6 off riders who were on the road and stranded. So I passed.
  2. FLHTbiker

    FLHTbiker Moderator Staff Member

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    I did the new Race Tuner on my Ultra and don't have any issue with em. Had a power commander on an 03 Ultra once and it stranded me a long way from home. I disconnected it and then rode it the rest of the way home.
  3. badinfluence63

    badinfluence63 Well-Known Member

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    who makes the race tuner?

    My 2001 has the Magnetti-Marelli EFI on it. After puttting the SE 204 cam w/ stge I download she rolls like its her job. When all up in the middle of the convoys I crack the throttle and off she rolls. Not so good on gas. And it was a biotch locating that download one time use cartridge too.
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2010
  4. hotroadking

    hotroadking Super Moderator Staff Member

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    there is nothing wrong with powercommanders.

    Problems reported typically have to do with poor installs
    where users did not properly connect the cables.
    there are hundreds of thousands if not more than a
    million Powercommanders out there on HD's and other
    motorcycles.

    Race Tuners are just HD's version of the V&H Tuner,
    and several other fuel adders. They have to be
    connected into the harness and do the same thing
    on the older MM bikes, fool the ECM.

    It's the only way you are going to get your
    HD ECM to perform what you need if you are changing
    the bike from stock, and Powercommanders are the
    number one choice. With a Race Tuner all you can do
    is add fuel, that's it and that is not the whole solution
    to your engines needs.

    Powercommanders allow fuel curve, timing, RPM, all kinds
    of options to allow the engine to properly run, cool, less fuel
    more power. In order to do it right a dyno tune is best,
    some people think they can simply download a map from
    some web board and go riding but it's best to tune it to the bike.

    IF you want the real low down call Jamie at Fuel Moto
    and then get one of their units, pre-programmed (they
    have tons of maps) and see how the bike runs.

    Fuel Moto USA

    Whomever told you PC units were not good
    has no idea what they are talking about...
  5. FLHTbiker

    FLHTbiker Moderator Staff Member

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    I personally don't like piggy back systems, especially after having a Power Commander installed at a dealer and then the unit failed. The unit itself failed and was not a poor connection problem. It was sent back as defective and that is when I had them install a Race Tuner. I have the Super Tuner S.E. Pro installed on my current bike, no problems. I've never had an issue with a Race Tuner. There are many here that use different tuners all have advantages and disadvantages.
  6. hotroadking

    hotroadking Super Moderator Staff Member

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    The basic Race Tuner is just a rebadged DFO (Digital Fuel Optimizer) as is the Vance and Hines Tuner (DFO) and they are all add ons just like powercommander so it's no different, an add on is an add on. Some fail, as do many Race Tuners, DFO's etc.

    The two non add on options are TTS Mastertune or the newer SESPT (Screaming Eagle Race Tuner) you have an add on.... They are the two programs that allow you to access the new Delphi based EFI systems. (Old SERT was developed for HD by TTS Mastertune, if you have it contact them and upgrade)

    So even though one failed, millions haven't. Not pissing on your experience, and that's fine you have to understand the Race Tuner, DFO, et al are all add ons as well, and they are very very limited, I would not suggest one to anyone simply because they
    are band aids not solutions...

    The presumption that all HD's are too lean and only need fuel is wrong, most of the
    heat you engine is putting out is due to wrong ignition timing and fuel, Powercommanders
    address both issues, as well as more....

    I know I"m not gonna change anyones mind but Talk with Jamie at Fuel Moto
    and before you strap any tuning device on reconsider the fact that a $200 fuel
    adder like the DFO is the cheap way and only does half if that much of the tasks
    that need to be done.

    Also They both fake the ECM out on MM bikes, thats just the only way it can be done..
  7. The Tourist

    The Tourist Banned A-Hole

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    Since I was going to do diverse mods over a long period on my Dyna, one of the first things I purchased in 2004 was a super-tuner. (They were marketed by MoCo at that time as "race tuners.")

    I put the 95-inch kit in my bike before I took delivery, but I did not do anything else except the Screaming Beagle pipes. No cams, no pushrods, etc., because I did not want to put a tight engine on a dyno.

    But when the +2,500 miles had been passed, we made all of the ancillary mods, and then the bike hit the dyno. That was the first time.

    Since that tune-up, Black Betty has not missed a beat. In fact, I offered to give my wrench an hour's wages for a new run, and he stated that it was not necessary.

    However, over that period we have changed out the entire electrical system with new Screaming Beagle parts, plugs, wires, etc. and I still am getting superior performance.

    I understand how having your bike not perform up to your expectations is a hassle, but my bike runs fine. And that's with a series of mods over the years, both mechanical and electronic, and several runs and changes to 34 line item protocols.

    BTW, the last time Betty did the dyno, I got 100/100 and that's with a flat torque curve to 5,000 RPM.
  8. FLHTbiker

    FLHTbiker Moderator Staff Member

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    The race tuner makes changes internally and does not piggy back to fool the system as a power commander does. The power commander is a true piggy back system.
    Piggy Back Controllers
    Piggy Back Controllers connect into the OEM wiring harness to make changes to the fuel map. These devices alter the sensor signal from your engine and “fooling” your factory ECU into providing a different amount of fuel than the real engine conditions warrant. The simplest example of this is that if the factory ECU is told the engine temperature is 30 degrees cooler than it really is, the ECU is going to lengthen the time the fuel injectors are open and provide a richer fuel mixture. It’s actually a simple, but effective way to create new fuel maps. You create an adjusted fuel map in the piggy back system software and it is smart enough to change what the factory ECU senses. The downside of this upgrade is that you never really change the true fuel map that is in the factory ECU.
  9. hotroadking

    hotroadking Super Moderator Staff Member

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    He can't run the Race Tuner on an 01 it's a Magnelli Maretti system and the Race Tuner is not an option.....

    Your only option is Powercommander, DFO or uploads by dealer of Stage 1, 2 or 3 and you really don't want to use them unless you have the exact HD build prescribed for the build.

    Powercommanders are one of the best, well known and most used systems on motorcycles of all types. They work, very well, regardless a few have had issues but millions have not, and they have a good warranty as well as good support.

    The ONLY way to change the way the Magnetti Marelli (MM) EFI systems work
    is to fool them, and it's nothing new, not dangerous, and doesn't hurt the sensors or
    the HD system....

    IF you need a tuner for your 01 I woudn't hesitate to put one on my bike.....
  10. FLHTbiker

    FLHTbiker Moderator Staff Member

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    I was speaking of Race Tuners in general due to the way you seem to put them down. Power Commanders may have their use but will never have another one on my bike. I know of to many riders here that have had issues with them. I've never talked to anyone who has had an issue with the Race Tuner once the bike has been tuned with one.
    He may need another type of system and for him I would do a lot of checking into all the systems before just slapping on a power commander.
  11. FLHTbiker

    FLHTbiker Moderator Staff Member

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    This is from a professional tuner.

    This picture shows what is tunable on a SERT. Look at the drop down list.

    The SERT also has a Data Logger that's useful if your are into playing with your own mapping.

    Attached Files:

  12. hotroadking

    hotroadking Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm not down on your race tuner, I just keep saying it just won't work on his 01.

    Just because you don't like them, and had a bad experience with one doesn't mean they are all bad units, or that they do not work. Millions of Power Commanders are out there running every day, anymore than there are people out there with SERT that have problems tuning bikes.

    I did say Race Tuner and meant to type Race Fueler which is harley's DFO which does nothing good for the bike, IMO it only adds fuel.

    There is a Screaming Eagle Race Tuner, which is a good product, In fact I use it's successor the TTS Mastertune and agree I'd prefer not to have a bolt on tuner.
    If you have the old SERT you need to upgrade to the new TTS Mastertune program at some point, it's worth doing.

    BTW your SERT is no longer offered, it is now SESPT and made by a new company when HD replaced TTS Mastertune and neither is compatable (SERT - SESPT)
  13. FLHTbiker

    FLHTbiker Moderator Staff Member

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    I already have the new EFI Super Tuner S.E. Pro and is designed for 01 later EFI VRSC,XL,XR,Dyna,Softail and 02-later EFI Touring and Trike models & also fits VRXSE Destoyer Race Bikes. and appears it is not designed for 01 touring models. Probably the earlier version would, don't know but do know of several guys that I ride with also had the power commander and for some reason including mine it would not work when piggy backed onto the Harley system. I think Cucktx may have the power commander on his and Cardboard has a different system. If you find one that works for you (any rider) than that is what you should stick with.
    My 03 Ultra just would not work with a power commander and when we put the Race Tuner on it, she then ran perfect.
  14. hotroadking

    hotroadking Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Yep the Racetuner/Mastertunes are the way to go,

    I can tune my bike with the 02 sensors, a laptop and riding around town for a day...
    You can do that with a Zippers Tmax and Powercommander V with Auto Tune....
  15. badinfluence63

    badinfluence63 Well-Known Member

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    I'm not familar with Power Commanders and race tuners. When I was told about not one but many riders having issues with them in a reletively small block of time as a consequence of piggy backing the MOCO it was a no go for me. Mainly because I do not understand the new tech but do understand how much it sux to be stuck in the middle of no wheres.

    I think with a few simple modifications it sounds like one could dial there bike in. For me as mentioned it was the SE 204 with stg 1 down load and I am really happy with the outcome. MPG lacks but power is there when needed. The reliability speaks for itself as I have just completed a 7000+mile roundtrip to the west coast from NH w/out as much as a hickup of a problem.

    I am doing a lot of reading to get a leg up on the modern technology as it is really foreign to me. Modern tech seems to equal many more parts that can have the potential to shat the bed on a rider.
  16. Studds

    Studds Active Member

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    Ya' know the more I read and hear about all the problems with all those power commanders the happier I am that my 03' E-Glide Classic was special ordered with a carburator !

    Just Sayin'
  17. cowboy

    cowboy Moderator Staff Member

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    studds so wheres the pic of that new bike you have?
  18. steveb

    steveb Active Member

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    Had a Power Commander on my '05 Dyna and purchased a PC V from Jamie at Fuel Moto so far both worked out well. Can't afford the Thundermax right now .Jamie dialed in the program on the PC V perfectly .The bike runs great no complaints at all. Even if I had the money now I am not sure I would spring for the Thundermax with autotune.
  19. cardboard

    cardboard Well-Known Member

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  20. rightnwrong

    rightnwrong New Member

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    No disadvantage at all in my Race tuner. :D

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