Squadra Chip Installation - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 08:48 AM Thread Starter
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Squadra Chip Installation

Just received a chip from Alfissimo. Before I install it I'd like to hear any tips about the task and anything to specifically watch out for.

Bill

1991 S4 Spider "Gabriela", 2017 VW Golf R, 2018 VW GTI,

Previous obsessions; 2006 Mustang GT, 2006 BMW Z4M, 5 other Bimmers, Capri V6, Renault 5, Lotus Cortina, Sunbeam Alpine, Ducati Diana Mk 3, Norton Commando
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 09:18 AM
But Mad North-Northwest
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It's pretty straightforward, just follow the directions.

Ground yourself before touching things, try not to stress the PCB, and be careful prying out the old chip (I gently pried on each side with a little screwdriver and wiggled it out.) Also make sure you install the new chip in the proper orientation.

You will need 93 octane after the upgrade as it makes much of the additional power by advancing the timing map.

Tom

1963 Giulia Spider (1750 engine)
1974 GTV
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Former: 1987 Milano Gold
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 01:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gubi View Post
Also make sure you install the new chip in the proper orientation.
that is the important bit, as it fits both ways (one right, one wrong) and the instructions I got didn't actually say "which way up" and the photos were fairly poor quality.

you need to feel a solid click to know the chip is inserted correctly.

otherwise it is all very easy, go slow and work cleanly.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 03:34 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info guys. The problem I'm having is how the heck do you open the ECU to access the chip? I've looked up some other threads on the subject and mention is made of a couple of tabs that need to be released. I'm not sure where these are and don't find any photos.

Bill

1991 S4 Spider "Gabriela", 2017 VW Golf R, 2018 VW GTI,

Previous obsessions; 2006 Mustang GT, 2006 BMW Z4M, 5 other Bimmers, Capri V6, Renault 5, Lotus Cortina, Sunbeam Alpine, Ducati Diana Mk 3, Norton Commando
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 04:35 PM
But Mad North-Northwest
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I can't find a photo, but from memory there are four (I think) bent over metal tabs on the side opposite the Bosch sticker. You need to bend these back with a screwdriver and/or pliers to release the cover.

Tom

1963 Giulia Spider (1750 engine)
1974 GTV
1991 Spider
Former: 1987 Milano Gold
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 04:41 PM Thread Starter
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OK, thanks, I've got it apart and the new chip in place. BB member slow creek found a YouTube link that made it clear.
I'll post that link after my test drive.

Bill

1991 S4 Spider "Gabriela", 2017 VW Golf R, 2018 VW GTI,

Previous obsessions; 2006 Mustang GT, 2006 BMW Z4M, 5 other Bimmers, Capri V6, Renault 5, Lotus Cortina, Sunbeam Alpine, Ducati Diana Mk 3, Norton Commando
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 07:03 PM Thread Starter
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All is well. The mystery of how to open the ECU was solved by watching this video;

I had to laugh at the remarks on previous threads about "a couple of tabs you press with a screwdriver and the cover slides off."
Perhaps my 91 Spider has a different ECU from some but I had to straighten TEN metal tabs to open the sucker.

Once open the video covered the procedure nicely. Separating the two halves of the PC board was a little touchy but just go slow and don't pry anything too hard.

Removing the large white terminal plug requires bending back a plated metal tab at the end where the cable fits into the plug. The video does not show this but if I puzzled it out anyone can.

After fitting everything back together the car fired right up. My first test drive immediately impressed as the low and mid-range throttle response was noticeably improved. The engine simply feels and sounds smoother. A frequently climbed steep 3rd gear hill showed no hint of pinging on discount station 91 octane.

So far, so good. This gizmo is doing just what I hoped it would.

My only disappointment is with the totally inadequate instructions. Apparently Squadra Tuning assumes we all know how to open the ECU and access the circuit board.

Bill

1991 S4 Spider "Gabriela", 2017 VW Golf R, 2018 VW GTI,

Previous obsessions; 2006 Mustang GT, 2006 BMW Z4M, 5 other Bimmers, Capri V6, Renault 5, Lotus Cortina, Sunbeam Alpine, Ducati Diana Mk 3, Norton Commando
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 07:24 PM
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I do apologize. I will make them refine their instructions. Otherwise next time I do a spider I will make my own. Thanks for the help guys! Appreciate it.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-08-2019, 03:36 AM
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I noticed the exact same improvements when i fitted the chip to mine - much better tractability at lower revs.

Quote:
Also make sure you install the new chip in the proper orientation.
That made me smile as I installed mine the wrong way round, the first time. Guess what, the car didn't fire up straight away! Or fire up at all ... It was one of those heart sink feelings for a while, thinking I had fried the ECU

I retraced my steps, re-oriented the chip, and the car did then start OK.
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