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  • Torque Convertor Lockup Meter

    The Auto PB Challenger has an electronic activated, hydraulic actuated Torque Convertor Lockup - Dampener Clutch (TCDC), this locks up the Torque Convertor (TC) when certain speed and load conditions are met, in 4th and 5th gears only.
    The purpose is to save fuel, reduce ATF temps and reduce wear on the TC internals.
    The system works on a Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) that varies the TC lockup between 70% and 99.6%, if the TC is locked up in the one position for any longer than 4 minutes then a fault code is thrown by the AT ECU.
    There are aftermarket lockup kits that over-ride this system but rather than fit one I chose to see if I could learn "to drive" with the existing system by monitoring what was happening and adapting my driving style.
    As the TC is a "high slip" 2.04:1 ratio and with the PWM it is hard to determine when and how much the TC is locked up, this easy mod gives you the voltage at the AT ECU which controls the TCDC solenoid so it only measures the controlling voltage and not the actual hydraulic pressure (this mod is on the drawing board and will be a bit more expensive and involved).
    Normally under gentle throttle in "D & 5th" the TCDC locks up at about 75kph and unlocks at about 64kph, it will unlock if you are aggressive with the throttle or take your foot off the accelerator. You see this as normal line voltage of 12.9 to 14.2 vdc displayed when unlocked and the voltage drop to between 7 & 8.5 vdc when the TCDC is in PWM. In 4th gear using Sports Mode and a gentle throttle, the TCDC locks up at about 68kph and unlocks at 58kph.
    I use this indicator and my Scangauge to understand the relationship between the speed, load and throttle position and can now drive at touring speeds and keep the TCDC locked up most of the time even in hilly terrain, this is done by shifting down early and carefully throttle positioning.

    How to do this mod, you need a soldering iron, heat shrink, pig tail crimps and crimp pliers, insulation tape and patience.

    1. Have the ignition off and pull the 20amp fuse #14.
    2. You need to access the AT ECU which is located on the drivers footwell/firewall just left of the steering column so the lower plastic dash cover must be removed.
    3. Using a 3 wire digital voltmeter, extend the existing wires by about 1200mm, solder connections and heat shrink joins. Note you must use a 3 wire voltmeter, info attached less than $10 from EBay.
    http://www.wonmeter.com/036-dc-030v-...ter-p-383.html
    The green wire from the meter taps into the Yellow/Red wire, terminal 15 of the AT ECU.
    The red wire from the meter taps into the Blue/Orange wire, terminal 24 of the AT ECU.
    The black wire from the meter goes to a good earth point.
    If you use "pigtail" or "ferrule" crimp terminals then these can be pushed into the back of the plug housing next to the wires, and then taped securely into place. Or if you want you can cut and splice directly into the wiring loom, be warned the wires are very thin and due to the difficult location a high degree of skill, dexterity and patience is required.
    4. I have temporally mounted my gauge on the right hand side next to my GPS and cable tied in place on the GPS power supply wire.
    5. Replace the fuse, start the car and you should see line voltage, Take the car for a drive and in "D & 5th" you see the voltage drop at about 75kph GPS, and in Sports Mode 4th at about 68kph GPS.





    cheers, old Jack.
    Last edited by old Jack; 04-12-13, 12:14 PM. Reason: Stall ratio correction from 2.05 to 2.04
    2011 PB Base White Auto, Smartbar, Cooper STMaxx LT235/85R-16,TPMS, HR TB, 3 x Bushskinz, front +40mm Dobinson , rear +50mm EHDVR Lovells, Dobinson MT struts and shockers, Peddars 5899 cone springs, Windcheater rack, GME UHF, Custom alloy drawer system inc. 30lt Engel & 2 x 30 AH LiFePo batteries + elec controls, Tailgate hi-lift/long struts, Phillips +100 LB & HB, Lightforce 20" single row driving beam LED lightbar, Scanguage II.
    MM4x4 Auto Mate, Serial No 1 .

  • #2
    Brilliant!

    Thanks for taking the time OJ to produce this great explanation and wiring diagram.
    Much appreciated,
    Mike.
    Now: MY14 NW with:
    Before: MY10 PB Challenger with: lotsa experience

    Comment


    • #3
      Wow, great work old Jack
      Richard.......MY12 silver base model auto rear driver tow truck and shopping trolley. Bilsteins, Firestone rear air bags, HR towbar, Scangauge II and aftermarket reverse camera/GPS navigation unit. SOLD

      Comment


      • #4
        Wouldn't connecting the red to 24 mean the meter is On all the time? The red/blue wires at positions 2 & 3 look to be switched supplies.
        ZH Outlander VRX previously NS X V6 - RDL

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Quadcam View Post
          Wouldn't connecting the red to 24 mean the meter is On all the time? The red/blue wires at positions 2 & 3 look to be switched supplies.
          I'm guessing that the fusible link to which Old Jack has connected is switched on another page; but I too did wonder about using 2 or 3 instead, so that the meter is only on when solenoid control has power. I'm sure Old Jack has a reason for choosing the wire that he did.

          I'm intrigued that full power (99.6%, or 255/256 ) is unlocked, and voltage drops for locked. I did not expect that.

          Old Jack, does it tend to ramp from one voltage to the other (i.e. two states with steady transition between), or does it settle at intermediate voltages? Is it a truly variable system, or does it simply use the PWM for a "smooth" transition between on and off?

          I'm musing about a lock-up for the NT, but most other home-grown systems are for lockups that are either on or off. This is different...

          I'm intrigued now.
          NT Platinum. DiD Auto with 265/70R17 ST Maxx, Lift, Lockers, Lockup Mate, Low range reduction, LRA Aux tank, bull bar, winch, lots of touring stuff. Flappy paddles. MMCS is gone!

          Project: NJ SWB. 285/75R16 ST Maxx, 2" OME suspension, 2" body lift, ARB 110, 120l tank, bullbar, scratches, no major dents. Fully engineered in SA. NW DiD & auto in place - a long way to go....

          Scorpro Explorer Box

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          • #6
            Originally posted by nj swb View Post
            I'm guessing that the fusible link to which Old Jack has connected is switched on another page; but I too did wonder about using 2 or 3 instead, so that the meter is only on when solenoid control has power. I'm sure Old Jack has a reason for choosing the wire that he did.
            It does not really matter where the 12vdc supply comes from, terminal 2,3,11,24or 38 as long as it is a fused supply, the meter will not read until there is voltage on the green wire, remember this is a 3 wire voltmeter which is not common.

            I'm intrigued that full power (99.6%, or 255/256 ) is unlocked, and voltage drops for locked. I did not expect that.
            The TC will only lockup and PWM when there is minimal TC slip sensed so under hard acceleration the TC unlocks and slips, even if the trans does not change down a gear and then waits until the "car speed catches up with the engine speed" if that makes sense. The AT ECU controls the resistance to earth as the TCDC engages and it is the voltage drop in the circuit we are measuring, this is why aftermarket TC Lockup over-ride kits have a resistor in the circuit. From my reading the PWM is used to reduce vibrations from the engine through to the TC, trans and vehicle much like the Dual Mass Flywheel does in the manual gearbox.

            Old Jack, does it tend to ramp from one voltage to the other (i.e. two states with steady transition between), or does it settle at intermediate voltages? Is it a truly variable system, or does it simply use the PWM for a "smooth" transition between on and off?
            The voltage varies constantly when the TCDC is PWMing, not by much about 0.5 vdc. I have a 5 digit meter installed with a 300ms refresh rate and the reading constantly changes so measuring to 4 decimal places is pointless and that is why I have suggested only a 3 digit meter.

            I'm musing about a lock-up for the NT, but most other home-grown systems are for lockups that are either on or off. This is different...
            This only measures the voltage drop across the solenoid and does not over-ride the factory PWM in any way. I would like to have a manual over-ride so I could lockup the TCDC in any gear and rpm but would like this to be with PWM so it would need a small PLC to replicate the PWM or a way of tricking the AT ECU to PWM with an external signal and ignore the signals that it usually uses.

            I'm intrigued now. I have been intrigued for many months!
            cheers, old Jack.
            2011 PB Base White Auto, Smartbar, Cooper STMaxx LT235/85R-16,TPMS, HR TB, 3 x Bushskinz, front +40mm Dobinson , rear +50mm EHDVR Lovells, Dobinson MT struts and shockers, Peddars 5899 cone springs, Windcheater rack, GME UHF, Custom alloy drawer system inc. 30lt Engel & 2 x 30 AH LiFePo batteries + elec controls, Tailgate hi-lift/long struts, Phillips +100 LB & HB, Lightforce 20" single row driving beam LED lightbar, Scanguage II.
            MM4x4 Auto Mate, Serial No 1 .

            Comment


            • #7
              So what does this mod actually do? Measure voltage of the torque converter?
              MY17 Triton GLX Plus with Mitsubishi Canopy. Keeping it light and simple. 265/70/16 Nitto's, Bilstien shocks, Kings Springs front, Formula leafs rear, ECB nudge bar, Ligjtforce 170's, twin batteries and a ARB fridge.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by 02-SR5 View Post
                So what does this mod actually do? Measure voltage of the torque converter?
                Rob, all it does is measure the electrical signal from the AT ECU to the TCDC solenoid so you have a visual indication of when the TC is unlocked and when it is in PWM operation (TC lockup). I did this because I wanted to get a better understanding of how, when and why it works because I thought I had an issue but I actually discovered that the system was working correctly and it was my driving style that was not getting the best out of this "Smart Auto".
                This was my first auto and CRD in 35 years of 4wd ownership.

                cheers, old Jack.
                2011 PB Base White Auto, Smartbar, Cooper STMaxx LT235/85R-16,TPMS, HR TB, 3 x Bushskinz, front +40mm Dobinson , rear +50mm EHDVR Lovells, Dobinson MT struts and shockers, Peddars 5899 cone springs, Windcheater rack, GME UHF, Custom alloy drawer system inc. 30lt Engel & 2 x 30 AH LiFePo batteries + elec controls, Tailgate hi-lift/long struts, Phillips +100 LB & HB, Lightforce 20" single row driving beam LED lightbar, Scanguage II.
                MM4x4 Auto Mate, Serial No 1 .

                Comment


                • #9
                  Correct me if I'm wrong but now that the signal can be measured and it's effect on the auto's operation is known, the next step could be to intercept the signal and insert some sort of control?
                  Richard.......MY12 silver base model auto rear driver tow truck and shopping trolley. Bilsteins, Firestone rear air bags, HR towbar, Scangauge II and aftermarket reverse camera/GPS navigation unit. SOLD

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by 260DET View Post
                    Correct me if I'm wrong but now that the signal can be measured and it's effect on the auto's operation is known, the next step could be to intercept the signal and insert some sort of control?
                    This is exactly what aftermarket lockup kits do except they do not have the PWM function.

                    I believe the PWM signal needs to be replicated and run in parallel (supplementary PLC/ECU) or some way of tricking/over-riding the numerous input signals that the AT ECU uses to initiate, control and disable the PWM of the TCDC.

                    Problem is that because I can not get access to the program logic of the AT ECU so it is much harder to workout what is happening in this "black box" and therefore what needs to be done to achieve the desired outcomes.

                    cheers, old Jack.
                    2011 PB Base White Auto, Smartbar, Cooper STMaxx LT235/85R-16,TPMS, HR TB, 3 x Bushskinz, front +40mm Dobinson , rear +50mm EHDVR Lovells, Dobinson MT struts and shockers, Peddars 5899 cone springs, Windcheater rack, GME UHF, Custom alloy drawer system inc. 30lt Engel & 2 x 30 AH LiFePo batteries + elec controls, Tailgate hi-lift/long struts, Phillips +100 LB & HB, Lightforce 20" single row driving beam LED lightbar, Scanguage II.
                    MM4x4 Auto Mate, Serial No 1 .

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by old Jack View Post
                      This is exactly what aftermarket lockup kits do except they do not have the PWM function.

                      I believe the PWM signal needs to be replicated and run in parallel (supplementary PLC/ECU) or some way of tricking/over-riding the numerous input signals that the AT ECU uses to initiate, control and disable the PWM of the TCDC.

                      Problem is that because I can not get access to the program logic of the AT ECU so it is much harder to workout what is happening in this "black box" and therefore what needs to be done to achieve the desired outcomes.

                      cheers, old Jack.
                      What I was thinking was some sort of control other than an on/off conventional lockup control, something that could be used to, I don't know, change a parameter? Rather than trying to rewrite the whole system?
                      Richard.......MY12 silver base model auto rear driver tow truck and shopping trolley. Bilsteins, Firestone rear air bags, HR towbar, Scangauge II and aftermarket reverse camera/GPS navigation unit. SOLD

                      Comment

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