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The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

 
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 05:42 pm
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Default The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

I was going to post this in my project thread, but this might be interesting to future PT brothers and sisters that are installing their own Stage 1 kits. So here we go.

Today, 11 November 2014, I finally received my my Stage 1 PCM after ordering it four weeks ago. And it looks pretty nice and much cleaner than some I've seen on the internet.




I purchased this from FWDPerformance.com. It was $275 including shipping. I didn't have to provide a PCM core and it came pre-programmed to my VIN so it was plug and play. There appears to be several vendors selling these including Jegs. But many folks on PT Cruiser and SRT4 forums appear to have bought theirs from FWDPerformance. So I did too. Here's the link:

https://www.fwdperformance.com/Store/

FWDPerformance purchases these from a company called Flight Industries. It is my understanding that Flight Industries once did the programming for new Stage kits for Mopar. But now that those are no longer available from Chrysler dealerships, Fight Industries continues to make them from used or refurbished PCM's under a license from Chrysler. Thus, when purchased, what the buyer gets is an obviously used PCM but with the complete Stage 1, 2 or 3 programing. And it will have a new and completely legitimate Mopar Stage label and part number on it.

According the anti-tamper sticker, my specific PCM came from Seabreeze Auto Parts LLC. Believe it or not, that is a company that appears to mainly sell used parts on eBay. Did Flight Industries buy my PCM on eBay and then reprogram it to Stage 1 specs? Who knows? Here's a link:

SeaBreeze Auto Parts llc - Home

One of the issues with the Mopar Stage 1 PCM is esthetics. It looks exactly like a stock PCM except the label says Stage 1 and a few other unique things. And that gets partially covered up by the bracket that holds it in the car. Some have decided to detail out their PCM and that looks pretty cool. But instead, I just decided to the paint the bracket in beautiful and appropriate Mopar Hemi Orange.



The main reason I did this is so my friends and family, that are not motorheads at all, will be able to find it if they ask to see it after I do all the bragging. I can just tell them, "It's that orange thing right there." When doing this kind of work, it always helps to know your audience.




After the easy install, my lovely little PT started right up and everything worked perfectly. I had none of the break-in issues that some have reported. So the next thing to do was the transmission "Quick Learn". There was nothing about the Quick Learn in the box with the Stage 1 PCM. Besides the PCM, I just got a copy of the receipt and a hand-written sticky note taped to the PCM itself so the technician at Flight Industries would know what programming and VIN was to be loaded. So I had to find the instructions online.



If I am still alive and still have my own webspace when the day comes, you may be able to download a complete copy of these Quick Learn instructions here:

http://cierra.cc/ST1QUICKLEARN.pdf

There's more to come in the post below.
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 05:43 pm
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Default Re: The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

Now there are two ways to perform the transmission Quick Learn. The first way is to take it to a local Chrysler dealership and pay $89 to have it done by computer. The second is to do it yourself by performing a number of takeoffs from a dead stop. And then performing some almost full throttle accelerations from about 40 mph.

DO NOT TAKE YOUR PT TO A DEALERSHIP FOR THIS. Why? Because doing it yourself is just SO FREAKING FUN!!!

I had a blast. And while I should have done it on flatter road, this is my video for the first part, zero to fifty at 25% to 50% throttle.

Notice how there is noticeable improvement in the shifting as this progresses. And no, this is not all fifteen times.



There's more to come in the post below.
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 05:46 pm
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Default Re: The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

The second part of the Quick Learn was to go 50% to 100% throttle from a start of about 40 miles an hours. This is actually very easy to do. Just back off the cars in front of you until you have enough space and then punch it until it shifts back up. Again, shifting improved after about the third time.




What's really cool is that after doing this, my PT shifts better than ever. Under normal driving conditions, the shifts are silky smooth. That's much better than before in this GT and a whole lot better than in my 2001 Limited.


All that is left is the cool Stage 1 badge. Why go fast if you can't advertise that you can go fast when you're going slow. In my opinion, that's the only reason to go fast anyway. Speed kills. But being "speedy" keeps my lady interested.

This badge is reported to be the real deal. And as I said, nothing much extra came with the Stage 1 PCM. There are several places online to buy these and I think forum member, bubba_1952, may have some for sale too. I'm going to wait a day or two to mount this when it is warmer and dryer. I'll post an update then.

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Old 11 Nov 2014, 06:31 pm
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Default Re: The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

Just an FYI unless otherwise noted from the retailer or installation instructions for STAGE 1 it is not necessary to do a quick learn process.
The current STAGE 1 from FWD is a plug and play PCM.


Umm..... Todd your last 100% throtle test ...is your Turbo working?

Your PCM bracket MOPAR orange reason is somewhat why I do so many things in RED. Nice touch!
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Last edited by NitroPT; 11 Nov 2014 at 06:35 pm.
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 06:42 pm
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Default Re: The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

Nice handy! I forgot, I got the stage 1 decal from the back of the junkyard car today. I didn't know they existed before I grabbed it. Did the decal come with your PCM?

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Old 11 Nov 2014, 06:46 pm
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Default Re: The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

FWD does not include the STAGE 1 plate.
There is a reason why cosmetically some do not look so good. You may notice the none approved "new" MOPAR PCM sticker over the untouched factory seal.
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 06:48 pm
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Default Re: The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

After the new wares off and you can keep from punching it a little to often. I would be curious if the gas milage changes. And also did you have to change fuel grade?
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 06:51 pm
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Default Re: The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

Quote:
Originally Posted by Busted_PT View Post
After the new wares off and you can keep from punching it a little to often. I would be curious if the gas milage changes. And also did you have to change fuel grade?
Maybe he had the TRAC on and one foot riding the brake just in case he had another full throttle episode in lower gears ?





He should have already been using 91 octane fuel which is a standard 05 GT factory requirement.
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 06:58 pm
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Default Re: The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

Quote:
Originally Posted by Busted_PT View Post
After the new wares off and you can keep from punching it a little to often. I would be curious if the gas milage changes. And also did you have to change fuel grade?
The station down the road from me sales the 93 octane as their premium grade. That's what I've been running since the second tank in this car. It made no since to drive across town to save two cents for 91 octane.

The Stage 1 seems to add a nice little boost in acceleration during normal driving. And I like the more aggressive sound. It's like a little dog that thinks its a big dog now.
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 07:27 pm
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Default Re: The Handy Mopar Stage 1 Install

Your kidding right? I left out the word minimum mentioning the octane requirement.

The MOPAR stage 1 does not change boost control! You need Keven @ SYKED to calibrate PCM boost control calibrations.
Syked Ecu Tuning - Dodge Neon/SRT 4 - Hemi Ecu Tuning

What Todd is describing may be his first experience to PTB. Part Throttle Boost.
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Last edited by NitroPT; 11 Nov 2014 at 07:31 pm.
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