A Prius ECT Spoofer MCU Controlled

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Accessories & Modifications' started by ccdisce, Jan 11, 2011.

  1. ccdisce

    ccdisce Active Member

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    Being snowbound for a while I have built up 3 prototypes that use a PIC to drive them.
    1, Based on a PIC low pin count demo board
    2, A custom SD sized board
    3, A SlaGe based unit with switches and a 3 digit LCD to provide adjustability to the temperature trip points

    I have NOT hooked it up to my 08 Gen II Prius yet to see how well it works but I have sampled sensors such as ECT, ACT, TOT, MLPS o2 and added Oil Pressure, DFPressure on the Ford EEC-V for a number of years in a 97 TBird and a 02 GT in additon to tapping into the Intel MBUS.

    Assembly code continues to be written and I think that it should work fine.
    Pics are hosted here







    Winston.
     
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  2. ccdisce

    ccdisce Active Member

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    It Works

    I made changes to the Assembly Code in the Prius ECT Spoofer to improve the accuracy of the LCD readout which will now display the coolant temperature at all times.

    When the car is warming up it wll start spoofing when the temperature exceeds 112 deg F showing 166 deg F when the actual temperature is between 112 and 166. At 166 it will quit spoofing and pass on the actual temperature to the ECU.

    Cooling down from above 166 deg it wll trip on at 166 and display 166 all the way down to the lower trip out point. The Firmware will trip out at 3-4 degrees lower around 108. Four degrees of hysteresis were added to remove the possibility of 'hunting' at the lower trip point.

    Once the Spoofer has started spoofing, the temperature displayed on the Scangauge is the spoofed value the actual value is only known to the 'spoofer' hardware which now uses a table lookup algo to convert the A2D reading to deg F and display it on its LCD.

    The LCD and the switches add the ability to change the trip points without needing a full re-flash, the Spoofer has code which enables it to change and save the trip points on the fly.

    Winston.
     
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  3. josh2008

    josh2008 Active Member

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    You wanting to sell some??
     
  4. 2009Prius

    2009Prius A Wimpy DIYer

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  5. TheForce

    TheForce Ron Paul 2012

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    Will you be open sourcing this at all or do you plan to sell it? I'm just wondering if I should still work on my project which is mirroring yours only with the Arduino plus its open source. Since its been cold out I have not felt like sitting out in the car debugging code to finish my project.
     
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  6. seilerts

    seilerts Battery Curmudgeon

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    The Arduino route lends itself much more to open source/diy. I don't have the eye sight or soldering skills to produce the MCU device that fits inside the SDHC card case. Frankly, it would be nice to have both options: open-source Arduino or pay/plug/play MCU.
     
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  7. ccdisce

    ccdisce Active Member

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    A marketing case has yet to be made for this project.
    I did pick a technology and thereby components to keep the costs as low as the present day technology would permit.
    In this scenario the major cost omitted in these projects is my time to capture it on Orcad Schematic Capture , buy parts, build proof of concept units under a microscope (takes hrs), write the code in Assembly, run it thru the Simulator and debug on the bench and later in the car.
    My tax accountant has said that my project expenses up to this point are not deductable as they were incurred as a result of 'hobby' activities.

    El Presidente where are you when inventors need materiel?

    winston
     
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  8. ccdisce

    ccdisce Active Member

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    Yes the working principle is similar.
    I use a PIC16f914 on a custom card in order to drive the LCD, with the appropriate code this enables me to vary the trip points and observe the engine temp when spoofing is active.
    The Firmware could be markedly different as a number of routines that I wrote in 2006, had to be pulled in from my sw library to make it work.
    The output driver that I use is different.

    winston.
     
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  9. ccdisce

    ccdisce Active Member

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    Some Sections of this project can be open sourced as far as I can tell.

    There are a number of things tobe workedout to make this device ready to be open sourced.

    The Firmware utilizes some routines that I wish to keep out of public view as I use them in an earlier project which has not made it to market yet because of cost over-runs.

    The hardware needs PCB artwork generated and a panel of of say 5x10 PCBs etched, these will have to be sold to cover the payment to the PCB layout guy and the board fab house, DigiKey parts cost is another factor as the PCBs should be sold fully assembled, programmed and tested.

    I cannot advise you to continue or not continue with your project.

    Would you like to Beta test the MCU ECT Spoofer ? Before you answer a NDA may be required.

    winston.
     
  10. ccdisce

    ccdisce Active Member

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    I am not looking forward to making another of the SDHC as my eyesight is fading (a combonation of being long in the electronics and laser switching bussines) also and this is why I am thinking of having a number of PCBs etched.

    The SDHC version does not have enough pins to drive the LCD display or read the push botton switches to change the trip points but it does have LED indicators to indicate the temperature range of the coolant.

    The open-souce Arduino approach is not totally free as you will have to buy the particular Arduino Card plus buy/build another card to carry the driver components. The Atmel Mega/ Arduino Compiler/ is probably free, Source Code and Hex file would be free the for the Arduino Spoofer hence the 'open-source'.

    winston.
     
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  11. TheForce

    TheForce Ron Paul 2012

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    I would love to beta test your spoofer but I dont do NDA's. I'll have to pass on the offer.

    I will continue work on my Arduino project as I like the idea of open source for such a project. And yes being open source does not mean totally free. You still have to buy the hardware.

    For a project like this I doubt you could sell 10 of them. Mostly because in general people don't need it or want it. You do have to take advantage of the hack in order to increase your MPG. Otherwise it just does not work. Plus there is the legal issue of this supposedly modifying the emissions system. I have sold I think two of the manual and two of the hardware based automatic hacks that I built. I only built them because I had the spare parts.

    I don't think this is an add on that you can make money off of. Thats why I'm doing mine open source. I'm also doing mine open source because I'm no programmer or electronics engineer and I sometimes need help fixing mistakes or being shown a better way of doing something.

    I could be wrong and you could sell out on day 1. I know that if I can adjust the start and fake temp settings and the price is right I would buy one off of you.
     
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  12. seilerts

    seilerts Battery Curmudgeon

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    The PHEV community is a natural customer base. You've already got people that have made serious modifications to their car and are always looking for ways to squeeze out even more MPG.
     
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  13. TheForce

    TheForce Ron Paul 2012

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    Yes the PHEV community is a natural customer base for this product but from what I have seen the PHEV community is all most like the Prius community in general. Lets say 1% of the Prius owners are hypermilers. 1% is s a reasonable number considering how many Prius there are. Now I estimate the PHEV community to be about 2000 and no more than 3000 at the moment. Since I believe PHEV owners are more aware I will give 2% that are actually into squeezing out every last MPG. That means about 40-60 people would actually be interested in this type of product and I think that would include regular Prius owners.

    To me thats too small of a market to sell to and make a profit. In order to make a profit on such low volume you would have to be selling at or around $100 and to me I don't think this type of device is worth more than $50.

    Now you could market this kind of device like other MPG snake oil products and you might be able to sell 100's but I don't like that idea.
     
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  14. seilerts

    seilerts Battery Curmudgeon

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    I'm going off of what I have seen in the Gen I Honda Insight community, where the MIMA project of Mike Dabrowski now has 168 users and the battery gauge of Peter Perkins has about 100 users. And this is for a car that had 17,000 units of total production globally.

    I would put the potential here at 100 - 1000. Not enough to live on, but Winston could at least get paid back for his work so far.

    I agree on pricing, it has to be $100 or less, $50 without LCD would be the most attractive.
     
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  15. TheForce

    TheForce Ron Paul 2012

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    168 users of MIMA ( I'm one of them #156P :D ) Vs 17000 Insights is still about 1% but the Insight community is much more enthusiastic than the Prius community in my opinion. We are also comparing MIMA to a simple temperature hack. You just cant do that. I would compare MIMA to the CAN-View. I dont have the numbers for the CAN-View but I'm sure they are close or I'm willing to bet lower than the MIMA kits.

    If I was to do comparisons I would compare this hack to somewhere between an EV button and an anytime reverse camera mod. Easy and cheap enough to DIY or buy one for $50 and there still is not a BIG market for either.

    No one is going to make BIG money off this his hack. From my point of view its not worth the pursuit of professional production even in the smallest quantity. But thats just my opinion.

    If ccdisce can get a market to do at least 1 run of them and can sell them for $50 I would consider buying one. Even if it had no LCD feed back. I still would want to control the start and fake temps though some kind interface. Either a button/LED feedback or just changing some numbers in the firmware and uploading it to the chip would do for me.
     
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  16. seilerts

    seilerts Battery Curmudgeon

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    I agree with just about everything you say. I was thinking more of Peter's recent battery gauge by way of comparison, which is $50 with DIY assembly and you provide the serial LCD. That's why I say $50 without LCD (but with a port or cable to plug into) is a good pricing point, since the LCD itself would exceed the cost of all other components and the board, and many people already have an LCD lying around. This is also comparable to the Arduino DIY cost.

    What say you Winston? Is a production run of 100 to be sold at $50 compelling?
     
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  17. ccdisce

    ccdisce Active Member

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    $50 that much !!.:eek: But wait I paid $13 for single pin wire pigtail of a ECU connector for the EV hack.

    The SDHC version (without the LCD ) with buying parts at 1K pricing range and not providing the SDHC case I think should have a retail price of less than $20 if we can buy the blank PCBs at a 'resonable' price.

    To reduce the PCB area to drop the costs even further I was thinking of going to the leadless DFN type of package and seeing if the ECT driver can be changed to a NCh FET and a resistor.
    A Micro SD sized card is feasble then but you can always build the circuit up using DIP sized parts on a protoboard.

    My efforts this past 2 days has been to test the SDHC version that does not use that routine from my SW Lib and so could be more ameniable to Open Sourcing the Firmware, the schematic and the BOM.
    As I will have to pay to get the board laid out the phototool files may not be released as part of that package. I have looked at free autoroute package available on line but it seems that the parts that I use are not in the libraries and I will have to create the footprints for the parts that I use.

    winston.
     
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  18. ccdisce

    ccdisce Active Member

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    The LCD that the Spoofer uses is a simple 3 digit 7 segment 'GLASS' device probably costing around $3. Those serial LCD displays are not cheap. The Noritake Itron VFD is a great looking display but it is even more expensive.

    I dont think that the SDHC version should be sold for more than $20 at 100 pcs to defray my direct costs
    The LCD version with its LCD, larger processor (more pins to drive the LCD ), and pushbuttons maybe $30

    I am currently hacking into my 02 Mustang GT, that uses a MDE2 catch code EEC-V, and I think that it could use this device in addition to code timer changes that I can make to shorten the warm up times which will save the planet a little by saving a few teaspoons of gas.

    Will reply to your PM soon.

    winston.
     
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  19. 2009Prius

    2009Prius A Wimpy DIYer

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    For $30 I am definitely buying if the installation is not too difficult. Does it just need to tap into some wires of the ECU connectors similar to the EV button mod?
     
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  20. JeffreyDV

    JeffreyDV New Member

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    I am currently using one of 'The Force's' ACTH units. It works very well but can cause the check engine light to come on if left on because it is not able to turn off if the coolant temperature goes too low. The above mentioned devices are very intriguing as they would avoid the check engine light issue. As a PHEV user, I would like to see a hack the expands the useable SOC of the stock HV pack slightly.
     
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