You might recall I'm fitting the reconditioned, original engine into our thankless white Evo1.
This project started well, but went downhill until the engine stopped dead and wouldn't start again.
I was pretty fed up with the car, when it's owner, my young un John, suggested we use Lanciatrek to find the faults.
I'll hand over to John to explain....
For the longest time I was under the impression owning a Lancia Delta was a very analogue experience, and therefore to drive, work and care for it you needed only to be able to undo bolts and do them up again.
About 10 years ago I was informed by a wonderful Italian car mechanic that he simply couldn’t get any life out of the ECU on my Evo, and as such couldn’t tell me what state the thinking part of the car was in. It still ran so I paid it little mind. Fast forward 5 years and after my constant complaints of rev limit somewhere near 5.5k and poor boost, the car went to get some tuning love in the UK. Now at this point I should have smelt a rat as these fine tuning lads also struggled to get any conversation out of the ECU.
This car seemed to want its secrets hidden and we were fairly happy with that, until it had its original engine swapped back in and the engine simply didn’t run right. I should say it ran then didn’t run then ran again but didn’t idle and then stopped again.
Enter Lanciatrek and an entire new world of understanding and diagnosis possibilities. This simple software runs from Command prompt and is a simple yet very powerful diagnosis software specifically for Integrale from 8v’s to EVOs. It runs from a DOS promt which requires re-familiarizing yourself with backslashes and writing CD. It was recommended to start with Lanciatrek Lite to make sure all works as it should, which was a very good idea.
The Delta is pre-OBD 2 (onboard diagnostics 2). ODB was the plan to align the automotive industry with one universal car diagnostics principle, our cars require a unique plug adapter from the 3 pin Delta ECU output to 16 pin OBD 2, then to USB. You aren’t out of the woods yet as you have to understand that USB (universal series bus) replaces the parallel port that the OBD2 would have used meaning you have to find the correct port to communicate with the OBD2/Lanciatrek adaptor. I installed the supporting cable driver, then I found the correct port by just plugging in different numbers until it worked, we were in action and communicating with the Lancia ECU.
LanciatrekLite is a simple display of the cars parameters which include revs, water and air temp plus plenty more interesting values. The software was checked on my dad's working and fairly reliable Delta to make sure that everything worked. With excitement high and eagerness to apply this new world to the struggling Delta, a donation was made to Lanciatrek and the full fat software was downloaded.
The full version of Lanciatrek is quite an upgrade and gives you a full view of all the systems, and makes diagnosis of issues like loose electrical connections possible from the computer screen. With an old Windows laptop on my knee and sitting in the non-runner Evo 1 the process is very simple. Plug in the USB cable and it finds the correct port once you turn the ignition. After 3 seconds the software shows the cars parameters on a DOS based dashboard. This was the first time I’d seen any info out of the ECU and we were so excited by this. I don’t know much about why Lanciatrek manages where others had failed, but this car is fitted with an Eprom chip improving performance and this can sometimes trip up Lancia ECU readers.
The shock of being able to see the cars vitals overcame the fact it didn’t run, but it showed exactly the areas we needed to look at. The cam sensor had a short which meant there was a wiring issues and led us to the dizzy. “Oh Look” came the surprise response that a wire had broken, once a new connector was fitted the car started first try. The software had already paid for itself.
The car runs badly, it won’t idle and revs unevenly. The software highlighted that the TPS (throttle position sensor) and the MAP1 (manifold absolute pressure) were both shorting. I have to admit we searched for broken wires, then I stumbled on a Lanciatrek option to check connections. I don’t know how it manifests this but you can pick a sensor and check the connection and it will show with some voltage readings if there is a connection issue. The TPS showed an intermittent connection fault but as it was a new item I didn’t believe it was faulty. It looks like by observing the fluctuations the TPS can be adjusted to the correct position In this case 0.12 and the issue stopped. Previously the process of setting the TPS was a very analogue one, wiggling the TPS with loose bolts, but now the program has it covered. The MAP 1 sensor also appeared have a short circuit, leading us to believe that the rough start and poor idle was down to this. A replacement part is on order and I hope that will remedy that fault, leading us to hail Lanciatrek as the saviour of our Evo 1s rebuild.
The main fault showed as no connection to the distributor, or cam sensor. I could get under the bonnet and sort this out.
Uploading the software for the PC to connect with the 16 pin ODB plug was a bit of a faff.
It needs to be plugged in the car and to be on the internet at the same time, down at the lock up this isn't possible. So it was a drive to John's house to get it all sorted out!
'Gamechanging' is an expression we've heard a lot lately, but the Lanciatrek software has changed our game, and our perception of Lancia Delta fault diagnosis, forever!
Steve Cox, the inventor of Lanciatrek, has been very helpful. Steve has been kind enough to write about his system and we'll publish that soon.
Meanwhile we thank Steve and we'll continue to enjoy using Lanciatrek