Kinsler_Handbook_#32 December 2017

Kinsler Fuel Injection, Inc, 1834 THUNDERBIRD TROY, MICHIGAN 48084 U.S.A. Phone (248) 362-1145 Fax (248) 362-1032 73 A BRIEF HISTORY OF FUEL INJECTION In the early seventies, EFI became more popular on passenger cars. It was very expensive compared to carbs, as the carbs had been developed for many years to do a reasonable job while being mass produced using die castings. Just a couple of the EFI injectors cost as much as a carburetor. A V8 has as many as eight injectors, a complicated fuel rail, various sensors, and a complex wiring harness and electronic control unit (ECU). So why did they go to the EFI? It was a combination of political pressure due to fleet economy and emission requirements, image, startability, driveability, and the hopes that volume use and further research would lower the cost, which it certainly has. Racing has been an innovative and progressive sport. Considering that Buick was 100% EFI in the mid-80s, it only makes sense that there should be at least a couple of competition classes where the creative racer can dabble with the latest technology. There are a lot of systems and components available now and the cost has come down to an affordable range. EFI has arrived to stay ! So where does all this put us? Electronic fuel injection is becoming more advanced and sophisticated, so selecting the features needed for an application can be confusing. Kinsler Fuel Injection can help you work through the choices to find the right components for your project. We decided not to make our own electronic control because there are excellent ones available. We carry most brands of E.C.U.s and components, and make complete systems for any application. We have technicians who are glad to advise you on what to use for your application. They are happy to assist you no matter what mix of brands you plan on using, or what you may already have. Give us a call! Electronics surround us everywhere we go, and they are in the automotive world to stay. EFI applied to the correct applications in racing can actually save money. A supercharged or turbocharged drag race engine costs from twenty to fifty thousand dollars. It can be destroyed in an instant if it isn’t fueled properly. Most of the present mechanical fuel systems are a compromise on these engines. EFI allows complete mapping of the engine, suppling the correct amount of fuel at every possible condition. Programmed meticulously, reliability will be gained using EFI. In the early eighties the first race ECU’s appeared in the speed industry. They were quite basic, expensive, and tedious to program. Various sports cars tinkered with the EFI, and a Formula Vee series ran exclusively with it. A lot of this equipment was initially sup- plied by Bosch, with advancements being made by other companies that produced racing-only boxes. Because of its ability to handle a very complex engine fuel map with ease, EFI was literally snatched up by the F-1 cars in the mid- eighties for their turbo motors. While the output of these engines at about 750 horsepower from 92 cubic inches on gasoline looked impressive to most of the world in 1983, the developers knew that they were making tremendous compromises to stay safe with the limitations of their mechanical systems. Within just a few years af- ter introducing EFI, some F-1 engines were dynoing at nearly 1,250 horsepower or 13.5 horsepower per cube!! They ran about 1,000 horsepower on the track for qualifying and dropped back further for the actual race. Any skepticism about the ability of EFI to run with massive ignition interference, heat, or vibration was silenced. By the end of the eighties there were more than a dozen companies making aftermarket and racing electronic control systems; several of them being quite reputable with good solid products. The popular use of the systems was on road race, Indy cars, offshore race boats and high performance street machines, all these having rather complex fuel requirements. Today, drag racing is seeing limited use of EFI, both because of rule restrictions, and the relatively simple fuel requirements (wide open throttle only) for most type of engines operating on the drag strip... constant flow metering still works quite well there. The control boxes now available for racing range from basic ones at $1,500-$3,000 with programming software, to extremely complex systems that sense everything you can think of at $5,500-$15,000 with programming aids and software that are very user friendly and will run on laptop computers. Add to all this the cost of injectors at $40-100 each for common types, wiring harness at $300 for the street type to $1,500 for a good race harness, to $4,000 for super quality F-1 type harnesses. Fuel rails are $200 for the basic ones, $400 for high flow aluminum, to $800 for custom built stainless steel. Add a manifold, fuel pump, filter, pressure relief valve, etc. and you go from a com- plete system for high performance street use at about $4,500, serious on-track system at $7,000 to the most sophisticated at $11,000 to $21,000 including engineering time. First Zytek ‘white’ ECU; 1984. Used an EPROM chip that had to be ‘burned’ outside of the ECU with hexi- decimal code, then installed in the unit. It did have the luxury of hav- ing trim knobs for some field adjusting. Indy 500 winner, Treadway Racing’s car driven by Arie Luyendyk using Kinsler manifold, filters, p.r. valve © 2017