Installing a Formula Dynamics F1 Module in F360 - Ferrari Life
 
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post #1 of 26 Old 06-25-2012, 03:19 PM Thread Starter
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Installing a Formula Dynamics F1 Module in F360

I install numbers of Formula Dynamic's "Drive By Wire" Modules in Maserati Coupe/Spyders and Quattroportes. It does a great job of making initial clutch engagement crisp and positive as well as encourage upshifts to be more crisp as well.

In the Maseratis, adding this product makes a huge difference and really enhances the experience as a driver. The great thing about the product is that it isn't forcing the system to behave outside of the original engineering parameters which could lead to problems and early failures.

The FD Module simply encourages the ECU/TCU to operate in the most aggressive "Sport" mode it was originally programmed in, constantly. The throttle becomes very responsive as does the clutch and shifting performance.

The 360 F1 module has been out for some time, it seems to em that it hasn't caught on yet like the Maserati module has. After being involved in numerous conversations about different TCU upgrade options and clutch material upgrade options, I've been pushing this product in a big way.

I've finally met a 360 owner that felt the advertised benefits of this module coupled with my experience in the product line was evidence enough to take advantage of it. To help others move beyond the concerns of early clutch wear and lazy shift performance, as found especially in early cars I want to document this install.

Each time the car comes in for a service appointment, I'll be updating this thread with clutch wear vs mileage data for real world evidence.

The car I've installed this product in is a '99 F360 F1 fitted with the Second Version TCU. The mileage at installation in 38,500 and the wear index reads 13.50% used.

The installation is fairly easy for someone familiar with these cars and automotive wiring harnesses. Installation can take place under 2hrs. I don't recommend someone taking this on as their first auto DIY electrical task. The installation instructions are very detailed and make installation clear and straightforward, but you can get into a real mess and burn some things up if you get things wrong and make bad connections.
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post #2 of 26 Old 06-25-2012, 04:55 PM
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Josh, looks like a very worthwhile mod, and an interesting thread to follow, even for those of us with 3 pedal cars.

'99 550, Rosso Corsa / Nero, S/N:114654, Assy: 31836, Engine: 52084

High mileage, low compression, and missing on a few cylinders.....just like my cars.

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post #3 of 26 Old 06-25-2012, 11:41 PM
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Josh,

Great thread. Can you invite the owner to this thread to give us his opinions of the mods post install? I'm very familiar with Jeff's work and the DBW for the Maserati so I have high hopes for the product and things they are doing for Ferrari.
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post #4 of 26 Old 06-26-2012, 06:06 AM Thread Starter
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Absolutely, I'll ask him to join in and participate in the thread. The client will be picking up on Saturday most likely.

Thanks John, I believe there is valuable information here for any one looking at these cars. Clutch wear is such a common topic that hopefully these threads help reduce the black cloud surrounding these cars.

We've documented substantially improved wear in numerous Maseratis using this system. It's made the cars much more fun to drive as well as lower maintenance due to the improved wear characteristics. I'd like to see the same take place for the 360.

Don't get me wrong, I'm happy to do clutch changes for my clients...but if we can take some fo the fear out fo ownership it benefits everyone.
I


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post #5 of 26 Old 06-29-2012, 12:15 PM
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Josh- I know of one owner of a 612 who was interested in the upgrade and the FD technicians said they could easily do one if given access to the car. Sounds like something that might interest Enzo owners, too, if they feel the need for an update. Shift speed minimums on the 360, CS, early F430, and Enzo are all the same at 150 ms.

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post #6 of 26 Old 06-29-2012, 12:36 PM
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Josh, sounds very promising especially with the experience that have been acquired on the Maserati. I’ve been following your product on Maserati-Life too. I wish your product will have soon also a good feedback from the 360 owners

I have a question though. Without wanting you to reveal all the secrets of your device, can you please explain us a bit more in detail how this device interacts with the 360 ECU’s? Is this unit plugged on the CAN BUS or directly on the TCU? How does your unit “interacts” with the TCU in such way that the throttle response is improved as well as the F1 clutch/declutch operations?

Thanks
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post #7 of 26 Old 06-29-2012, 01:14 PM
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Stef- Interesting question, because the Sport switch does not affect throttle response except for the speed of shifting and the digital throttle automatically opening and closing for downshifts and upshifts. No difference in throttle response the driver can feel.

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post #8 of 26 Old 06-30-2012, 08:06 AM Thread Starter
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Stef, I don't have information that specific to the module. I'm simply a sales and installation center and I've yet to run into a problem that would lead me to needing that information for diagnostics. Sorry I don't have a better answer, if I did I would certainly share.

Taz, you are right about the ability to develop this product for many applications. FD has the capability, it's just a matter of reverse engineering cars and having them in possession to do so. I absolutely agree that cars like the 612 would benefit greatly from this addition as well. I've in fact inquired with Jeff about developing a module for that very model.

From a seat of the pants perspective, the throttle does become more sensitive and responsive and the clutch does react much quicker and more positively. Much like a Sprint Booster the FD module seems to over drive the throttle signal slightly making the throttle feel more connected.


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post #9 of 26 Old 06-30-2012, 12:11 PM
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Thanks Josh for the additional info. I guess that your device must also connect between the throttle sensor and the RHS Motronic ECU. The throttle sensor is directly wired with 6 wires to only the RHS ECU and not through the CAN Bus. I suppose that your device must slightly change the throttle position data which gives in return a more responsive feel That would lead to something like for instance a 25% acceleration with a throttle angle of x degrees instead of 20% acceleration.

Looking forward to hearing more feedback about your real life test
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post #10 of 26 Old 06-30-2012, 04:07 PM
 
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Hi everyone,

I just wanted to chime in and say that I am the owner of the 1999 360 Modena that Josh just upgraded with this module. I can honestly say that immediate impressions are that I love the feel of the car now.

I've owned this car for two years and it is my first that has this type of transmission. So I don't have the ability to compare it to say a 430 or so...

I will say that this new module definitely does everything that Josh states it does. The engagement from a stand still happens much faster, and shifts are much crisper. It really wakes the car up... I will be driving it quite a bit more and give more impressions soon.

I will be taking it back to Josh for all of my future service. So he should be able to keep this thread updated on the clutch wear. I am curious to see how it does as well..

Most of my driving is on the street, but I do take the car to Summit Point a few times a year as well...

Scott
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post #11 of 26 Old 06-30-2012, 06:15 PM
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Scott- Welcome to Ferrari Life and we hope you stick around. The FD package sounds like it is really worthwhile, plus it is completely reversible.

Josh, Scott- Is there a price range for the kit and installation you can give us?

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post #12 of 26 Old 07-01-2012, 04:58 PM
 
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Thanks for the welcome... I don't mind posting what I paid but I will let Josh chime in as it is his business..

BTW went for another drive today and still loving the new feel of the F1. Even my wife commented that she noticed a difference from the passenger seat. So I guess that is good.

Scott
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post #13 of 26 Old 07-02-2012, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
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Taz, The Ferrari module retails for $1995. I request an install time of 1.5hrs @ current labor rate. This allows me time for the physical installation as well as test drives and PIS adjustments if I feel necessary.

There is a toggle switch to activate a "less aggressive" mode in the module which could be located within the driver's reach for addition labor and fabrication costs. I've found no reason to want this lesser function so I simply leave the switch attached to the harness, tucked in the fusebox cubby along side the module.

FD also supplies a plug with jumper wires so the module can be removed from the harness and the circuit restored. This is great for an instance where diagnostics need to take place or the module is suspected to be faulty.

Both are instances that I've yet to come across after an install, fortunately.


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post #14 of 26 Old 07-02-2012, 12:30 PM
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Josh- Thanks, that is a whole lot cheaper than a new $4K 360 or CS TCU plus SD2 time. Do you need an SD2 to install? Guessing no, since all the memory and PIS settings are still in the F1 ECU/TCU.

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post #15 of 26 Old 07-02-2012, 02:38 PM Thread Starter
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Exactly right, comparatively speaking the Formula Dynamics Module is a bargain. When you think about it, although the CS has good shifting, no one has exclaimed about their incredible clutch life span. If this module helps improve clutch wear while retaining a proper OEM clutch kit as well as improves performance...it's an even better option...for less coin.

I'd like to see this product become available for many of the Ferrari models. It would be a game changer.


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post #16 of 26 Old 07-02-2012, 03:27 PM
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Josh- Affirmative. Would not mind having one in my 575M. Cheaper than an HGTC F1 ECU/TCU.

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post #17 of 26 Old 07-16-2012, 06:54 AM Thread Starter
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Definitely. I believe that will make this product a big draw for the 360 crowd also. The CS TCU's have got real pricey and few know exactly how to wire them in. Any mechanic properly skilled to work on Ferrari's has the ability to install the FD module without worry.

The installation instructions are very detailed and leave no room for confusion. If you can read well, installation is a snap.


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post #18 of 26 Old 07-16-2012, 08:50 AM
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Josh- Brian Crall thinks the late 360 ECU/TCU (part number 211023 ~$2800) actually works better for the 360 than the CS part (196986) and has later, updated algorithms. The ECU/TCU is just a remove and replug for the hardware, but you are correct about all the SD2 steps necessary to get all the memorized data into the new ECU/TCU. Otherwise it is just like a clutch change without an SD2. No workee.

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post #19 of 26 Old 07-16-2012, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ECSofVirginia View Post
Exactly right, comparatively speaking the Formula Dynamics Module is a bargain. When you think about it, although the CS has good shifting, no one has exclaimed about their incredible clutch life span. If this module helps improve clutch wear while retaining a proper OEM clutch kit as well as improves performance...it's an even better option...for less coin.

I'd like to see this product become available for many of the Ferrari models. It would be a game changer.
Clutch wear rates on properly set up CS tcu's are outstanding. I've fitted many, including to a heavily modded tracked 99 Modena with 80h.p of NOS. that thing was done four years back, 3 weeks ago clutch wear was at 32%. The CS tcu is, in my opinion, the best mod for the f1 360. As stated, they are now extremely expensive. The guy I used to get mine from has had a talking too from the factory and I had to find another supplier. It's an interesting product here, that's for sure. Has any long term testing been done? Mileage/clutch parameters etc?
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post #20 of 26 Old 07-16-2012, 10:07 AM
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Eddie- That is good to know and answers the question of which 360s can be updated with a CS or late 360 TCU. Pretty much all of them.

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