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Old 12-08-2015, 08:15 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by PeterH-Airstreamer View Post
I "inherited" a Holley Commander 950 EFI system installed on my 310. It scared the daylight out of me at first, until I started to get more familiar with it. My biggest fear was the ECU going bad with no help or parts for thousands of miles. So I went on a quest to find a replacement ECU (no help from Holley) and finally saw one on Ebay. I bought it, plugged in my laptop and dowloaded my data to the replacement ECU. Ran the engine to make sure all was cool. Now I have a ready to plug in replacement unit.
in my quest to find a spare ECU, I looked at Holleys latest models that have self adjusting and learning modes, that sound very attractive.
here is a link
https://www.holley.com/products/fuel...erminator_efi/
Btw, I really like the 454 with EFI. Its powerful, very responsive starts easy, plugs look beautiful and gas mileage appears to be improved.
Peter, smart move getting a spare ECU. Custom electronics is one of the things that worries me about any after market TBI or EFI. Sitting along side the road due to a failed 3rd party part is not my idea of having fun on a trip.
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Old 12-08-2015, 08:17 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by Keyair View Post
This one Brad...
FiTech Fuel Injection

Take a good look at their fuel supply options, as the Command module is really cool..
Steve, neat stuff but the custom modules are what concern me. If I went with something like that I'd have to buy spare electronics just to have piece of mind!

One of the things I found interesting about the system I orignially link to was that it seemed to use standed OEM parts. no custom electronics.

Complete TBI Conversion Kit for Stock Big Block Chevy 454 7 4L | eBay

Brad
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Old 12-08-2015, 08:21 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Kota View Post
I'm not a huge fan of these aftermarket TBI systems. They can be a huge improvement over a messed up carb. Don't expect too much from it. Lots of money for marginal gains. I've had better luck transplanting modern systems. $2000 can buy a really nice modern engine with the parts to make it go.
$2000 is more than I feel can be justified. I realize they would work great but I'm not sure I could justify the cost of system versus the number of miles it would take to pay it off.
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Old 12-08-2015, 08:22 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by jbxx View Post
I've done a couple of carb to TBI EFI swaps in Ca. no less.
Hardest part was passing emmissions, actually finding someone who knew how to do it right with a Executive order EOD452.
I did not have to do any programming and there was a great improvement over the carburetor. Mine were however for 4.2L. Jeep engines.
I'm happy to say we don't have the emissions issue here in Kentucky! Makes things so much easier.
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Old 12-08-2015, 08:29 AM   #33
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Brad, I came across this kit shortly after purchasing my motorhome. I've got quite a few gearheads in the office and ran the idea past them. Although my thoughts are hear-say, the consensus of my gearhead group says that nothing runs as well as the genuine GM throttlebody and injectors. Kit says is has a reman TB and computer, so you might be getting the 'real deal' here. ?
They all would source out a factory assembly to install from a donor motor. That being said, it wouldn't be an easy solution. Too many pieces etc. obviously. I'd be very curious to your experience if you do go this route! (kit, not junk yard diving)
A big thing for me, besides constant AF ratio provided by the computer, would be the serpentine belt set-up on later model 454's and 496's. As valuable to me as the FI set-up. To get this I'm a big fan of just sourcing out a complete, later model engine. Peferrably a multiport, coilpack variety. Then, just drop it in. So much easier than trying to find parts to bolt onto a dated engine. I know this is NOT what you were asking in your initial post..
So, to make this longer than it needs to be, I think that kit might be a good buy with a little looking into on who supplies all the pieces. doesn't look like it can be beat from a time and completeness perspective.
Ben, thanks for the feedback. The fact that it "seems" to use OEM parts is what got my interest. I don't have the time or energy to go junk yard diving even aside from the fact that in my neck of the woods there are no places for me to do so. When I worked in Pasadena for all of 2008 I found a bunch of You-Pick-It places and had a blast on weekends pulling parts from vehicles and shipping them home, especially since the company paid for the shipping! No salvage places like that around here

I thought about going with a serpentine belt system but since I had all the parts for the original setup that's the route I chose. This Argosy already needed so much other work I didn't feel like adding another item to the list

Thanks!

Brad
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Old 12-09-2015, 01:07 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by bkahler View Post
Tom, I do have an Edelbrock 1406 carb installed now. I interested in exploring tbi options as I didn't realize tbi could be had for less than $2000.

Should a true reasonably priced plug and play be available then I'm interested.

Brad
Plug-and-play isn't the issue. What I'm advocating is reliability and service (long) after installation.

For example, when you brake down, that out-of town tech won't be able to figure out what you've got, much less how to fix it. Remember, all he's got to work with is a computer loaded with (relatively "recent") factory specs. And you can bet those specs won't include diagnosis information for your after-market TBI set-up.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not knocking any tech's mechanical prowess. All I'm saying is that today's techs lack the mechanical savvy of yesterday's true mechanics. For the most part, these guys are "plug-and-play" themselves. Any attempt to diagnose a "conversion" will be met with trial and error (aka, educated guess) - mostly error.

Tom
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Old 12-09-2015, 05:36 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by TomKirk View Post
Plug-and-play isn't the issue. What I'm advocating is reliability and service (long) after installation.

For example, when you brake down, that out-of town tech won't be able to figure out what you've got, much less how to fix it. Remember, all he's got to work with is a computer loaded with (relatively "recent") factory specs. And you can bet those specs won't include diagnosis information for your after-market TBI set-up.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not knocking any tech's mechanical prowess. All I'm saying is that today's techs lack the mechanical savvy of yesterday's true mechanics. For the most part, these guys are "plug-and-play" themselves. Any attempt to diagnose a "conversion" will be met with trial and error (aka, educated guess) - mostly error.

Tom
Tom, I don't disagree with you which is why if I do go with a TBI I would look for something that uses OEM parts which the one I linked to appears to do so.

As far as working on engine problems it will be me doing the work. I don't really trust any shop to work on my vehicles, at least on my older ones like my Triumphs and the Argosy. My daily drivers I don't bother with as I just take them to a shop and let them plug in their test equipment.

Bottom line to get me to switch to a TBI it will need to be something that is serviceable with off the shelf components.

Brad
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Old 02-18-2016, 05:19 PM   #36
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I saw this on ebay and I didn't think it was expenseive so bought it and have it fitted on my 1979 Excella 28 MH.

We did have probelms and I was in contact with the seller but really he misdiagnosed our probelm and he was trying to send us a new ecu maps etc etc - we took things in to our own hands and traced the issues to a faulty lambda sensor!! This was replaced and we haven't looked back. There is no "fine tuning" or any other adjustments as the ECU looks after all that.

So its now installed and working a treat. I've done over 3000 miles and it has made big difference esp in hot starting - but starting in general has improved - no pumping the gas pedal - starts withiout using it. I haven't yet had a look at increased economy but can do if there is any interest.

The main modification or alteration was we had to reverse the throttle body and turn it 180 degrees to how the manual instructed. This was to allow existing fuel lines to marry up, also meant re routing the throttle cable. All this is needed as the throttle cable comes from in front of the engine on our MH's and not from behind as in a car. New brackets were required to route and house the throttle and (Dakota Digital) cruise control units, but all ended well - took a few hours to fabricate and fit.

The only other modification from the install manual was to keep the original Carter fuel pump (at the tank end of the MH) and use it as a "lifter pump" to feed the supplied high pressure fuel pump which is needed to supply high pressure to the throttle body - easy to do, but the original pump should be retained IMO.

All in all - well made - manual is sort of DYI if you're a mechanic or have a mate that is - and will help you.

Would i reccomend - yes, is it value for money - probably yes. Even though you could source wiring looms and all the other bits why would you bother! Unless your an auto engineer then just buy the kit.
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Old 02-18-2016, 08:36 PM   #37
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I saw this on ebay and I didn't think it was expenseive so bought it and have it fitted on my 1979 Excella 28 MH.

We did have probelms and I was in contact with the seller but really he misdiagnosed our probelm and he was trying to send us a new ecu maps etc etc - we took things in to our own hands and traced the issues to a faulty lambda sensor!! This was replaced and we haven't looked back. There is no "fine tuning" or any other adjustments as the ECU looks after all that.

So its now installed and working a treat. I've done over 3000 miles and it has made big difference esp in hot starting - but starting in general has improved - no pumping the gas pedal - starts withiout using it. I haven't yet had a look at increased economy but can do if there is any interest.

The main modification or alteration was we had to reverse the throttle body and turn it 180 degrees to how the manual instructed. This was to allow existing fuel lines to marry up, also meant re routing the throttle cable. All this is needed as the throttle cable comes from in front of the engine on our MH's and not from behind as in a car. New brackets were required to route and house the throttle and (Dakota Digital) cruise control units, but all ended well - took a few hours to fabricate and fit.

The only other modification from the install manual was to keep the original Carter fuel pump (at the tank end of the MH) and use it as a "lifter pump" to feed the supplied high pressure fuel pump which is needed to supply high pressure to the throttle body - easy to do, but the original pump should be retained IMO.

All in all - well made - manual is sort of DYI if you're a mechanic or have a mate that is - and will help you.

Would i reccomend - yes, is it value for money - probably yes. Even though you could source wiring looms and all the other bits why would you bother! Unless your an auto engineer then just buy the kit.
Robin, thanks for the info. Was your throttle body an original GM throttle body or an aftermarket brand?

I decided to not purchase a conversion kit and instead just started buying the individual components making up my own kit. I've got most of the parts purchased and sometime in the next couple of months I'll be installing the parts on my engine.

Myself and several others have been keeping this thread updated with what we're doing for TBI conversions.

Brad
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Old 02-19-2016, 01:43 AM   #38
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Hi Brad The throttle body was the one supplied with the kit from the ebay seller in the first post. I can pop the hood and have a look if needs be. I might take some pics of the instand and post them here over the weekend.

I understand getting all the parts my be easier for some but what about the fuel/ignition timing map or do you just rely on what is on the ecu or can you burn your own? I did n't go down this route as couldn't afford the time messing around - I wanted to fit the kit and walk away.
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Old 02-19-2016, 05:34 AM   #39
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I just noticed this thread, and maybe I am late in replying but if you want to see my conversion from Quadrajet to TBI on my 84 Excella check this out:
http://theouterlimits.ws/projects/ai...de_Page01.html

It was a long learning process and don't forget to check out my page on problems getting to the end result:
http://theouterlimits.ws/projects/ai...y.html#TBI-PgX

I also had to change to an in tank fuel pump to get things to work properly:
http://theouterlimits.ws/projects/ai...uel/index.html

Everything has been working fine since i installed the in tank fuel pump. I love the fact that when I exercise the engine in the winter it starts right up!
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Old 02-19-2016, 06:04 PM   #40
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Hi Brad The throttle body was the one supplied with the kit from the ebay seller in the first post. I can pop the hood and have a look if needs be. I might take some pics of the instand and post them here over the weekend.
Pictures are always nice as they can give pointers on how to do things or sometime now not to do things!

Quote:
I understand getting all the parts my be easier for some but what about the fuel/ignition timing map or do you just rely on what is on the ecu or can you burn your own? I did n't go down this route as couldn't afford the time messing around - I wanted to fit the kit and walk away.
I found someone that does tuning as a small side business. Once I get to the tuning aspect I will buy my own burner which will allow me to receive updates from him via email. That should make the process a lot quicker.
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Old 02-19-2016, 06:17 PM   #41
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I just noticed this thread, and maybe I am late in replying but if you want to see my conversion from Quadrajet to TBI on my 84 Excella check this out:
http://theouterlimits.ws/projects/ai...de_Page01.html

It was a long learning process and don't forget to check out my page on problems getting to the end result:
http://theouterlimits.ws/projects/ai...y.html#TBI-PgX

I also had to change to an in tank fuel pump to get things to work properly:
http://theouterlimits.ws/projects/ai...uel/index.html

Everything has been working fine since i installed the in tank fuel pump. I love the fact that when I exercise the engine in the winter it starts right up!
Wayne you put together a very nice website detailing your project. What's interesting is you seemed to have run across a lot of the same problems that other people have mentioned about AFI. At first I was sure I wanted to buy from AFI but as I researched more and more I finally came to the conclusion that I can do it myself. The final nudge came after I found someone that does tuning as a small side business. In talking with him he pointed that no one makes a TBI adapter for the later 2" TBI units that works correctly with the spread bore intake manifold. He described the problem you experienced almost exactly. I feel a lot more comfortable doing the TBI conversion now that I've enlisted his help.

It definitely concerns me that they didn't provide a 2" TBI unit when that's what you paid for. When I talked to them I specifically asked about the TBI unit being 2" and they said that's what they ship for 454s. I would have been extremely p*ssed off if that's what they would have shipped me had I bought from them.

I won't be using an in-tank fuel pump due to my tank not having any baffles. My tank is an OEM replacement but for some reason it didn't include any baffles. So I'm going to be using a surge tank instead which basically gives the same features as an in-tank pump.

Thanks for posting the links to your TBI write up!

Brad
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Old 02-20-2016, 04:58 AM   #42
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I was less than happy with the smaller throttle body ports, but I dont think I am loosing power over it. AFI claims that the higher pressure injectors compensate for the loss of port size. I gave up arguing with them. They have been helpful with solving problems with the installation, I dont regret using their product.

With the knowledge I acquired installing the kit I could probably install the full system without a kit now. When I started, I was clueless and without the kit, I would not have attempted it.

On the fuel pump and baffles, my 60 gallon tank has 2 baffles one high & one low and they are basically useless for side to side sloshing. The in tank pump assembly I bought has a small sump well to help reduce low fuel levels sloshing and causing the pump to suck air.


When I had the external fuel pump and a top side dip tube, I went through hell trying to figure out why I was loosing power. I tried various pump and filter combinations and nothing worked.

I finally found my fuel gauge was way off (reading over 1/4 tank when I was empty) so I was sucking air on corners and acceleration. Once air was in the external pump, it had a hard time recovering. I hope the surge tank works out for you.
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