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Tuning Guide

Welcome to the tuning guide. The purpose of this page is tolearn how to best tune your cars. Of course how a car is best tuned varieswidely from person to person. But hopefully this will help guide you as youlearn more about how you want your car to handle. This is only a guide, there isno exact method that I know of to best tune a car.


Gear Ratios

Perhaps one of the most important parts of your cars performanceis the gear ratios. If you gears are too high, your car will lack acceleration,but your top speed will increase. However, all of that extra top speed will doyou no good, if you can't reach it in time. Also consider that you may have todo a lot of low RPM acceleration if there are lots of corners that you have toslow down for. In that case, high top speed will do you no good. On the otherhand, if you gears are too low you will not have a high enough top speed tocompete on the straights.

Here we will tune the gears in 3 steps...

#1. Tune the individual gears for the best general relationshipbetween the gears.

#2. Tune the Final ratio for the best balance between Speed andAcceleration.

#3. Make small special changes, which are different for eachtrack or situation.

 

#1. Adjusting individual gear relationship

Here are things to consider...

Does first gear burn the tires when I take off?

If you tires burn on take off, first gear could be too low.However the tires should burn just a little bit. When you take off, you shouldalways keep the engine floored while the car is sitting on the start line. Tocalibrate first gear, go to the 400 meter time trial, and change ONLY first gearuntil you get the best time. When you get the best time that you can, take noteof the speed that 1st gear will shift at. (Example... 1st gear may shift at 35Mph).

Take note of your engine power spectrum graph. You can find itby going to the menu where you change your parts. If you have a Turbo chargedcar, go to the turbo section. Non turbo cars go to the NA Tune section. Now lookat your power graph, and notice the line for torque. You want to find the areaof that curve that is the highest. most modified cars have the highest point ataround 6500 RPM's. However, if you look you will see that at around 5000 RPM'sthere is almost just as much power as there is at 6500 RPM's. The actual RPMrange is different for each car, but the graph will show you what your carhas.  I suggest making each gear shift in at as close to your lowestmaximum torque point as you can. In this example, that would be as close to 5000RPM's as you can. But it's different for each car.

Now, go through all of your gears one at a time, and do the samething. You may have to switch to the 1000 meter test, if the 400 isn't longenough.

Once you have your gears configured for the best time in theflat run, consider what track or situation you want to put the car in.

As an example lets use Trail Mountain as the track, and the 92Mistubishi Twinturbo  (Fully race modified) as the car. This method willwork on any car, but we will use this one as an example.

Things to consider...

The GTO is turbocharged. It develops most of its torque ataround 5000 RPM's and is good to about 7000 RPM's. It's actual peak is at 6800RPM's if  I'm not mistaken.

So first we calibrate first gear using the 400 meter time trial.

Now we do the same for second gear. (2nd gear can't kick in at5000 RPM's because there are not enough gears in the transmission, so it must becalibrated from scratch)

Now put do the same for each of the rest of the gears, all theway up to 6th. This will give you a generally good (but not great) gearconfiguration.

Adjust the final at any time if you need to, but RECORDthe setting incase you have to change itback.

#2. Adjusting the final

Adjusting the final can be tedious, but is pretty easy. Theconcept is simple... You want to go as fast as you can, as often as you can. Ifyou set the final too high, you'll run out of track before you can reach yourtop speed. If you set it too low, your top speed will be less then it could be,but you'll have more power.

I suggest testing it like this...

Choose the track you want to race, and notice your highest topspeed during the race. Now go back to your gear configuration screen, and noticewhat your graph says the your top speed should be in the highest gear. Nowchange your final so that the top speed on your graph, is just a few miles perhour above the speed you actually reached. This will give you more power, andyou will likely reach your new higher top speed because of it. However this willalso affect first gear, which will make you tires burn more at take off. So youmay lose a little time taking off, but it may be worth it.

On Trial mountain, I configured my GTO to have a top speed of180 mph because the only place where I can go faster then that is going downhill, and there is a corner shortly after. So 180 mph is the fastest I can goeffectively. But it will go 180 mph even accelerating uphill, so it's goodusable speed that I can always depend on.

#3. Specialized adjustments.

This section isn't as structured as the others, and varieswidely depending on the style of the driver and the car, as well as the track.But here are some ideas...

I got some extra speed out of my GTO by loading up first gear. Imade 1st much higher then it should be, and then lowered the rest of the gears.I did a test race previously, and noted my slowest speed (without crashing orscrewing up). I then configured 2nd gear to shift in at that speed, but the restof the gears were now much lower, so I had more power in those gears.

The result... I take offreal real slow. But once I hit 2nd gear I take of like a rocket, and have lotsof power in all the rest of the gears with out losing top speed. At my lowestspeed during the course the car shifts down to 2nd gear, but never uses firstagain. So as long as you don't crash, it works well. If you crash it will slowyou down a lot!

Another configuration I had good luck with was tuning the first3 gears for midrange performance, and tuning the last 3 for high acceleration.

The result... You getaverage take off's and average drivability up to 3rd gear. After that the afterburner kicks in and you take off like a rocket. If you crash it's not a big deal. Your top speed isn't as high as it could be, and neither is youracceleration, but it's high enough to compete.


Down Force

After the gearratios, I'd say that down force would be the second most important part of thecar. But like everything else, opinions vary widely from driver to driver. Ifyour down force is too high, your car will have bad aerodynamics and lose topspeed because of it. If you down force is too low you will not have as much gripin the corners.

Things to consider...

Howmany corners are you going to be dealing with? If your racing a fairlystraight course (like high speed ring), you don't need as much down force as ifyou were racing a small course (like Autum ring mini).

Howmuch power does your car have? If it has a lot, it's going to burn the tiresin the corners. Higher down force will help take care of that.

Whatdrive train is your car? Mid/Rear cars like the 91 Acura NSX need a lot ofrear down force to keep from spinning out. Front/Front cars need more Front downforce to turn properly (because all of the weight is in the front). 

Here'show I configure my GTO...

The GTO has lots and lot of power. Itis also pretty heavy, and with the gear ratios that I have it goes pretty fast.So I set the down force as high as it would go in the front, and just 1 or 2points lower then the front in the back.

TheResult... I have plenty of power to over comethe extra drag from the spoilers. It's makes the car a little touchy, but it isworth it because I can hold the corners going much faster. Because I have myrear down force set just a little bit lower then the front I can make the carslide almost perfectly around a corner by letting off the gas. If I want it tostop the back end from sliding around, I just step on the gas again.

Otherconfiguration that works well is setting the front and rear down force as highas they will go, but equal.

TheResult... It makes the car a little harder to turn, but you canactually take the corners going a little faster. But it takes more skill tocontrol the car because it will not slide easily.

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