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Old 07-11-2011, 09:59 AM   #1
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First Mod Suggestions?

Well, I guess this is a bit of a misnomer. I am strongly considering one hardware mod (gears) and one software mod (tune). There are some other non-exotic mods I'd like to do later, but the real question is which one first?

I've been pretty deadset on getting 3.73 gears, replacing my stock gears, but the more I think about it, I wonder if it wouldn't be best to get a tune first. Afterall, a lot of my complaints have to do with shift points, throttle response, etc. -- all of which should be addressed in the tune, right? I know the gears will make the car more fun to drive, but maybe it'll be "fun enough" with just the tune for now?

The other complicating factor is money. Fortunately, I got all my student loans paid off before I got married, but my wife brought student loans into the marriage, and those are coming due at the end of the month. I know it's not a TON of money, but with a tuner and 3 tunes running under $400 while gears and install are sounding like a minimum $600+ in the ATL area, it might be more prudent to go tune -> gears -> hope wife finds better paying job soon...

Thoughts?
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Old 07-11-2011, 10:01 AM   #2
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If you get gears you will need a tuner to fix the speedo. So I'm gonna say tuner first
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Old 07-11-2011, 10:08 AM   #3
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AmericanMuscle has combo deals on tuners and gears.
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Old 07-11-2011, 10:10 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Lalayla
AmericanMuscle has combo deals on tuners and gears.
There's an idea!
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Old 07-11-2011, 10:17 AM   #5
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

just keep in mind the warranty on the car will be voided if you tune it, and if you put gears in the rear end the rear end will not have its warranty either.
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Old 07-11-2011, 10:18 AM   #6
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

Well, I suppose I could buy the gears/tuner combo, but since I have about zero experience working on cars, I don't want to be the one potentially creating a deathtrap back there

Fortunately, the place where I was considering going to get the gears installed tunes for the speedometer change after installing the gears, but obviously that wouldn't be necessary if I already had the tuner and could just get BAMA to send me the updated files.

Then again, if I had the tuner already, there are a couple of places -- like Mo's Speed Shop -- that wouldn't "complimentary" tune and would be back on the table...
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Old 07-11-2011, 10:23 AM   #7
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

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Originally Posted by SpectorV View Post
just keep in mind the warranty on the car will be voided if you tune it, and if you put gears in the rear end the rear end will not have its warranty either.
Well, the way it was explained to me re: replacing gears was that if there were any problem with the car that resulted from the non-factory part, Ford would not cover the costs, but the warranty for the part would be the umbrella to cover those issues.

Now, I have never owned a car with a manufacturer's warranty; so, I have no experience dealing with warranty claims, but this is what the installer affiliated with the dealership where I bought the car told me.

As far as the tune is concerned, I didn't ask him about that, but I could see how that might void the warranty...or at least give Ford's attorneys enough gray area to say that ANY problem I experienced MUST be the result of the tune...

While I have no experience working on cars, I do have a lot of experience working on computers, and my understanding of tuning is essentially "overclocking"...which is AYOR.
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Old 07-11-2011, 11:10 AM   #8
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

a car tune is not the same thing is overclocking a computer. They just basically change many variables in the car to make it produce more hp/tq or shift harder and other such things.

You are correct on gears, in a perfect world ONLY the rear end or something related to rear end gears going bad would not be covered. If your drivers seat power motor went out it would not be related to the rear end gears and it would still be covered. Some dealerships love to deny warranty work on ANYTHING they can so just FYI... and fighting it is not easy or cheap.

Tunes will void it though and you have to have a tune to correct the speedometer for gears.
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Old 07-11-2011, 12:13 PM   #9
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

not trying to steal the thread..just a quick question..where does the tuner plug into?
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Old 07-11-2011, 12:24 PM   #10
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

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Originally Posted by vinnygt View Post
not trying to steal the thread..just a quick question..where does the tuner plug into?
Under the Info/Setup buttons on L side of driver's side, I believe.
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Old 07-11-2011, 12:26 PM   #11
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

on a 96?
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:00 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vinnygt
on a 96?
No lol. Under the steering wheel. Gas petal side
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:02 PM   #13
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

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Originally Posted by Texastboneking View Post
No lol. Under the steering wheel. Gas petal side
haha thanks..can i just take it to ford and have them tune it for my speedo? or am i just better off buying the tuner?
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:04 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vinnygt

haha thanks..can i just take it to ford and have them tune it for my speedo? or am i just better off buying the tuner?
Buying a tuner. Our dealership won't do it
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:22 PM   #15
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

Quote:
Originally Posted by vinnygt View Post
haha thanks..can i just take it to ford and have them tune it for my speedo? or am i just better off buying the tuner?
you cant update the speedometer to fix it with a tune in 96, only 99+ can have this done. You only have the dallas speedcal (little box thing that you install and makes it read accurate 100 bucks~) or you can change out the speedo gear to get it "close"
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:30 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpectorV

you cant update the speedometer to fix it with a tune in 96, only 99+ can have this done. You only have the dallas speedcal (little box thing that you install and makes it read accurate 100 bucks~) or you can change out the speedo gear to get it "close"
Lol forgot. Yeah I used the gear. They sell for 20 bucks online
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Old 07-11-2011, 02:01 PM   #17
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

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Originally Posted by SpectorV View Post
a car tune is not the same thing is overclocking a computer. They just basically change many variables in the car to make it produce more hp/tq or shift harder and other such things.

You are correct on gears, in a perfect world ONLY the rear end or something related to rear end gears going bad would not be covered. If your drivers seat power motor went out it would not be related to the rear end gears and it would still be covered. Some dealerships love to deny warranty work on ANYTHING they can so just FYI... and fighting it is not easy or cheap.

Tunes will void it though and you have to have a tune to correct the speedometer for gears.
That just sounds messed up to me. If I am using Ford Racing parts and ONLY tune the ECU to reflect that new ratio, I don't see why that should void it. Of course, there's what's right and what's realistic, I guess...

I do appreciate the heads up though. Every shop I've talked to insists that flashing back tp the stock program makes everything ok, but with an AT I don't think my car would even be functional...regardless of the dealership being able to detect that the settings had been reflashed...
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Old 07-11-2011, 02:19 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illestdomer2005

That just sounds messed up to me. If I am using Ford Racing parts and ONLY tune the ECU to reflect that new ratio, I don't see why that should void it. Of course, there's what's right and what's realistic, I guess...

I do appreciate the heads up though. Every shop I've talked to insists that flashing back tp the stock program makes everything ok, but with an AT I don't think my car would even be functional...regardless of the dealership being able to detect that the settings had been reflashed...
Because when you tune a car away from stock ford doesn't know what you did with your tune. For all ford knows you jumped the timing and caused pistons to melt. They cant see what you did with a tune. All they can see is off you tuned it.
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Old 07-11-2011, 02:52 PM   #19
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

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Originally Posted by Texastboneking View Post
Because when you tune a car away from stock ford doesn't know what you did with your tune. For all ford knows you jumped the timing and caused pistons to melt. They cant see what you did with a tune. All they can see is off you tuned it.
Sounds like a business opportunity to me if I'm Ford. You know people want to mod their cars so just honor the warranty as long as the work is done by a dealership. You win regardless.
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Old 07-11-2011, 03:01 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illestdomer2005

Sounds like a business opportunity to me if I'm Ford. You know people want to mod their cars so just honor the warranty as long as the work is done by a dealership. You win regardless.
Yeah but the dealer states that the tune that comes in the vehicle is the safest tune for it. They won't jump power if they think it will harm the engine.
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Old 07-11-2011, 03:40 PM   #21
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

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Yeah but the dealer states that the tune that comes in the vehicle is the safest tune for it. They won't jump power if they think it will harm the engine.
Probably right. I guess the best thing to do is just buy a used Mustang that no longer has a warranty but has reached that depreciation amortization point that makes it not only less of a liability in the event of catastrophic failure but also leaves plenty of cash for gears, tunes, and of course turbo/superchargers

Maybe I'll look at picking up a pre-owned 2011 or 2012 model in 2016 or something after I've paid this sucker off and give it to my wife. That way I can go buy a GT with a MT!
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Old 07-11-2011, 03:47 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illestdomer2005

Probably right. I guess the best thing to do is just buy a used Mustang that no longer has a warranty but has reached that depreciation amortization point that makes it not only less of a liability in the event of catastrophic failure but also leaves plenty of cash for gears, tunes, and of course turbo/superchargers

Maybe I'll look at picking up a pre-owned 2011 or 2012 model in 2016 or something after I've paid this sucker off and give it to my wife. That way I can go buy a GT with a MT!
That's why I have my 97 cobra
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Old 07-11-2011, 06:19 PM   #23
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

Was poking around and found this:

To Tune or Not to Tune, Your Warranty Is the Question

Sounds like there's enough conflicting "information" out there to say it's basically rolling the dice. I think the best advice is to just try to call my dealer "anonymously" and tell them I'm planning on doing a tune or asking THEM if they will tune it and see what they say. Really, it matters not to me if a Ford dealership in California will or won't honor the warranty. It matters (to me) what the dealership here tells me.

The bad thing is that I know I'm a tinkerer by nature, and even if they tell me no, it'll just make me frustrated, not change my course of action likely.
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Old 07-11-2011, 09:48 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpectorV
just keep in mind the warranty on the car will be voided if you tune it, and if you put gears in the rear end the rear end will not have its warranty either.
Not true... It depends on the dealer. I talked with mine the other day. The only way the tuner voids the warranty is if the tune caused the issue. Also there is a law on the books that says dealers can't void warranties because of a mod.
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Old 07-11-2011, 10:01 PM   #25
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Look up "Magnuson-Moss Act of 1975".
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Old 07-11-2011, 10:47 PM   #26
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

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Look up "Magnuson-Moss Act of 1975".
I've seen that quoted elsewhere, but it reminds me of what happens if you have ANY internet trouble, and as soon as [enter ISP here] discovers you have a router, they blame the router instead of their crappy service...

You made a good point about contacting your individual dealer though. I guess I just need to get it in writing from the service department?
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:53 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illestdomer2005

I've seen that quoted elsewhere, but it reminds me of what happens if you have ANY internet trouble, and as soon as [enter ISP here] discovers you have a router, they blame the router instead of their crappy service...

You made a good point about contacting your individual dealer though. I guess I just need to get it in writing from the service department?
I'm not sure I follow. If you don't search on the act itself. Then search something about dealers voiding warranties. It's out there. There is a wiki page if you trust all the info they put out. It's worth looking into. I've dealt with one dealer for all my ford vehicles. This is my second Mustang, so I feel I have a pretty good relationship with the lm and the service department. They have always told me that the warranty won't be voided, unless the mod caused it. Hell, even if you change your wheels and that caused the issue, the issue is then voided. Not the entire warranty.
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:21 PM   #28
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

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Originally Posted by avengnd View Post
I'm not sure I follow. If you don't search on the act itself. Then search something about dealers voiding warranties. It's out there. There is a wiki page if you trust all the info they put out. It's worth looking into. I've dealt with one dealer for all my ford vehicles. This is my second Mustang, so I feel I have a pretty good relationship with the lm and the service department. They have always told me that the warranty won't be voided, unless the mod caused it. Hell, even if you change your wheels and that caused the issue, the issue is then voided. Not the entire warranty.
If you look at the link I posted above, it seems like there are two different experiences out there: guys who get tunes and have damage but change back to stock before service but 1) gets warranty coverage or 2) one is denied warranty coverage.

It seems to be almost totally dependent on the caprices of particular dealerships. In other words, you are at their mercy and just have to hope they got laid the night before you come in needing service.
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Old 07-12-2011, 05:58 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illestdomer2005

If you look at the link I posted above, it seems like there are two different experiences out there: guys who get tunes and have damage but change back to stock before service but 1) gets warranty coverage or 2) one is denied warranty coverage.

It seems to be almost totally dependent on the caprices of particular dealerships. In other words, you are at their mercy and just have to hope they got laid the night before you come in needing service.
Interesting. I think that anything you do ultimately is the dealers call. I know when I talked to my about a tune they said nit to put it back to the stock tune just to leave it.
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:10 PM   #30
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

Just sent you a PM, avengnd.
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:29 PM   #31
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Just sent you a PM, avengnd.
PM sent
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Old 07-14-2011, 03:28 PM   #32
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

Just as an update, my dealership service department told me that I could mod the car and tune it while maintaining the warranty -- just that any mod, if determined to be the cause of a problem, would disqualify that particular claim from warranty service.

So, in a way, it's still rolling the dice, but I think that is totally fair. Ford shouldn't be responsible for me changing something if that change caused the problem, BUT me changing something shouldn't give them wholesale license to void the warranty.

Well played, dealership...well played.
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Old 07-14-2011, 04:09 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illestdomer2005
Just as an update, my dealership service department told me that I could mod the car and tune it while maintaining the warranty -- just that any mod, if determined to be the cause of a problem, would disqualify that particular claim from warranty service.

So, in a way, it's still rolling the dice, but I think that is totally fair. Ford shouldn't be responsible for me changing something if that change caused the problem, BUT me changing something shouldn't give them wholesale license to void the warranty.

Well played, dealership...well played.
Awesome!!!!
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Old 07-19-2011, 12:50 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpectorV
just keep in mind the warranty on the car will be voided if you tune it, and if you put gears in the rear end the rear end will not have its warranty either.
Cant you just put the tune to its stock settings and the warranty will work?
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Old 07-19-2011, 06:17 AM   #35
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Re: First Mod Suggestions?

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Cant you just put the tune to its stock settings and the warranty will work?
According to some, they can tell if it's been tuned before or atleast how many times it's been flashed, which tells them it's been tuned.
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