Iowa Chapter Director
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Ames, Iowa
have you beat on it at all? Sometimes it takes a good high rpm run to get the rings seated properly. I believe in babying it for the first 4-500 then just pounding it a few times.
Remove the spout connector back behind the passenger side shock tower, then read the timing. It's a little 2 prong connector with a plug in it, when the plug is removed, the ECU goes to conventional, non-computer controlled timing. Stock timing is 10* BTDC. With your setup, 16-18 would be good, 20-22 if you run 92-93 octane, colder plugs, and a 180* thermostat would be good too, but not in the winter.
Chip tunes do get the car running, but suck for fuel. The tuner intentionally sets the air/fuel excessively rich for safety reasons. My rear bumper gets sooty too, i burn rich as hell. I need it tuned also, but like you, money is an issue for me as well. I might just get a tuner and do it myself with as much as I change my car all the time.
1988 Notch Mustang: - 438W, direct port n2o, t56
2003 SVT Focus: - SCT X3 tuner