Pontiac G8 Forum banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone. I'm a G8 noob but certainly not a GM or LS noob. Since buying this car I have been finding all sorts of fun things on it. I bought it used with 31,000 miles on it.

I have found that it has a Vararam CAI, modified mid pipe, and magnaflow axle backs. Along with brembo brakes. I am on the hunt for a set of headers. I think I may have gotten a set so I have a few questions.

Since I have been on this board, I have read countless "I got new headers" posts. What I have noticed is that it has been wildly (like every post) recommended that with headers comes a tune on these cars. In my experience with fbody LS engines, it was recommended that you get a tune. However, guys were running there cars with full bolt ons and no tune pretty regularly. Of course they were making huge gains with a dyno tune.

Here is my question. I don't have the extra money for a dyno tune (4-500 dollars in my area). I'd like to put the headers on and drive the car. I've been researching mail order tunes and things like the cortex. It seems mail order tunes require that I buy 350-600 dollar software and then pay for a tune. There seems to be some controversy about using the cortex with headers.


What are my options here? I'd like to have a safe ride and not worry about blowing the car up. I'm looking to spend the least amount of money but I'm willing to pay what it costs to ensure my vehicle stays safely running. I'm thinking that by the end of the year (decemberish) I will be able to afford a dyno tune for maximum reliability and power.

I had a full bolt/ cam only WS6. There was a guy local to me doing street tunes for a very reasonable price and was getting rave reviews. I had him do the tune and the car ran wonderfully for years and made great seat of the pants power. It turned great times at the track as well. Is the street tune an option?

If it matters I am about to purchase Kooks mid length headers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Save up for a tune. Easy.


Sent from AutoGuide.com App
Thank you for that bit of information. Meanwhile, I have several questions that you failed to address. Like what are my options on a tune in regards to header installation? Mail order? Handheld? Street? Dyno? Obviously dyno tuning is the way to go. Is there a cheaper way to get a msil order than to purchase the software and connecting cables? Send in a PCM, have the tune put on it and ship it back. Are handhelds acceptable for tuning for headers? Is a street tune a viable option? Are people in here doing it (street tune)?

See? Those were the questions I was looking to get answered. But thanks. I will start putting some pennies back.
 

·
every village has one
Joined
·
2,322 Posts
Where are you located? If you're within reasonable driving distance of a reputable dyno tuner, that might be the way to go.
Saving up for the tune is great advice.
If you go with the mail order tune, you will need the cables so that the tuner can make adjustments for you. They will also update your tune as you make other modifications. You'll be missing the dyno numbers, but if you're pleased with the results, that's what counts.
In the end, numbers are just numbers. It's how the car reacts in the real world.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,086 Posts
I have had a Vector tune on my engine and tranny for almost 3 yrs now and I love it. They have adjusted my tune with every mod, for no extra charge. Last time on a dyno I was a little lean on the top end and I sent the graph to Vector and they sent me another tune in less than 24 hrs. And yes, I saved up and bought the cables and software and tune just so I could re-tune when necessary.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,431 Posts
Thank you for that bit of information. Meanwhile, I have several questions that you failed to address. Like what are my options on a tune in regards to header installation? Mail order? Handheld? Street? Dyno? Obviously dyno tuning is the way to go. Is there a cheaper way to get a msil order than to purchase the software and connecting cables? Send in a PCM, have the tune put on it and ship it back. Are handhelds acceptable for tuning for headers? Is a street tune a viable option? Are people in here doing it (street tune)?

See? Those were the questions I was looking to get answered. But thanks. I will start putting some pennies back.
Wasn't being rude but this EXACT question is addressed at least twice on each page in this section of the forums.
And it all comes down to wait, be patient, and save up for a tune.
Do everything together and do it right the first time.


Sent from AutoGuide.com App
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Wasn't being rude but this EXACT question is addressed at least twice on each page in this section of the forums.
And it all comes down to wait, be patient, and save up for a tune.
Do everything together and do it right the first time.


Sent from AutoGuide.com App
You came off a little rude but I was not trying to be rude either. I was simply trying to ask a question (several questions) and get a semi good hold on things with which direction I needed to go.

I searched the first 3 pages of this forum and could find bits and pieces if what I was looking for. However, I think you are missing the point of this thread. I have acknowledged that I need a dyno tune (or a high quality comparabe tune).

My questions are more exploratory than a simple answer. I have stated that I have done a little research on the cost of tuning in my area. I have some holes on my research results. I will try to list them now to be clear.

1. Is it possible to send a new PCM and your mod list to be tuned much like a mail order tune and plug and play with your car. I once did this with an old LT1 trans am and that is where I got this question.

2. Is anyone on the board running a street tune or knows anyone running a street tune. A street tune being a guy sitting in your passenger seat and logging your driving and making changes along the way until he likes what he sees.

3. If I were to go the mail order way (beginning to lean this way for ease of changing the tune later) what is the cheapest way to get into that game? What am I looking for in a package to have everything I need to send and receive tunes for my car?

4. Should I decide to dyno tune, is the 4-500 dollar range I am seeing an appropriate price for a dyno tune?

5. I see several threads regarding the handheld tuner so I can consider that question answered by stating that it is generally not recommended to use that tune after you have installed headers. Correct me if I'm wrong.

I'll post more if I think of any. Thank you to all that replied. I do appreciate the insight.

Mike
 

·
IdontRe Member
Joined
·
631 Posts
768MPH has given solid advice. As for your search, all your answers have been previously hashed out/resolved in other threads. Spending some time doing searches on this forums board will reveal oh so much. Trust me, you're not the first to do whatever your about to do to this car.

But in short, here is my attempt to hand you the answers you seek:
1. Is it possible to send a new PCM and your mod list to be tuned much like a mail order tune and plug and play with your car. I once did this with an old LT1 trans am and that is where I got this question. You can do it this way yes. Many options available. Wouldn't be my choice though. It is better to find a local tuner (if good w/LSX engines) or go w/a mail order tune (Livernois or other).

2. Is anyone on the board running a street tune or knows anyone running a street tune. A street tune being a guy sitting in your passenger seat and logging your driving and making changes along the way until he likes what he sees. Many use HPTuners and do it themselves. A little harder due to your learning curve and a little more dangerous because you can change values then end up hurting your car but the endless options and immediate access make this option very high on many peoples list of tune options.

3. If I were to go the mail order way (beginning to lean this way for ease of changing the tune later) what is the cheapest way to get into that game? What am I looking for in a package to have everything I need to send and receive tunes for my car? Livernois (or others named as 'Vendors' on this board) does a very good job and it's very simple. You contact them, pay their fee, recieve their equipment, talk via email, load the tune, then buy new tires. It's that simple.

4. Should I decide to dyno tune, is the 4-500 dollar range I am seeing an appropriate price for a dyno tune? Your prices may vary but that is about right although a little high.

5. I see several threads regarding the handheld tuner so I can consider that question answered by stating that it is generally not recommended to use that tune after you have installed headers. Correct me if I'm wrong. You're right.
 

·
Cars are my hobby...
Joined
·
1,610 Posts
Vector & Livernois both make tunes that will grow with your mods (these are *not* canned tunes, they are remote tunes. The cortex is a canned tune). There are also other companies out there that do remote tuning. That means, they sell you a device that monitors your cars sensors, and tune remotely. You'll see smaller dyno numbers this way, but you'll have a faster car (dyno doesn't always produce the real world scenario).

The reason people run the cortex with headers is because they already owned the cortex and THEN purchased headers. It has not been proven that this causes or doesn't cause damage, but there are people who have driven thousands of miles this way without problems. I would *not* buy a cortex tuner in your situation... spend the money on a remote tune.

After you tune your car, and you're happy with it... go to a dyno and log your run... and get your numbers. You can send that log to your tuner and they can either make changes or say you're good. It also decreases the cost of the dyno run.

Whatever you do, do not accept a tuner who has done less than 100 G8s.
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top