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-   -   5 Star Tuning SCT (https://www.irv2.com/forums/f52/5-star-tuning-sct-265690.html)

MWKingSD 10-04-2015 06:07 PM

5 Star Tuning SCT
 
I've tried researching this family of devices (E450 RV application) - I see they got an award from a magazine last year...can't really find anything that describes how the devices really are used, or why they got the award even in that magazine. Lots of comments from people who don't have one saying why they don't. But I do understand that factory programming will be designed to ensure passing emission testing no matter what, to avoid another VW FUBAR. I'm familiar with this kind of thing on motorcycles, but those are set with the bike on a dyno - don't think I get that with one of these.

Those who do have one generally say "it's good" but no objective info on why other than an occasional comment about shifting. Everyone seems to agree there's no significant MPG advantage. Some fancy graphs on their website but those don't tell what the test conditions are so I don't know that relates to anything in the real world.

Supposedly really popular but there are better reviews of some gizmo to latch 'fridges shut than this truly mission critical widget - how did anyone decide to buy in? I'm not put off by the price - it's a near trivial cost - but then there are 3 different versions with 3 prices that seem to do the same things??? And what's an "87 octane email"?

And why would I need 10 maps maps for it? I can only use one at a time - how would they be significantly different? How would I know which to use? I can see doing a lot more harm than good by experimenting without any data.

Kind of reminds me of the engine oil flame-wars that crop up from time-to-time. I'd be really pleased if someone would just point me to some good product reviews or something like that. :banghead:

grumpy0374 10-05-2015 05:43 AM

MW, if your fimilar with tuning a cycle, the 5 Star is similar, but not quite the same.
I have the 5 Star on my 2012 class c, V-10 Ford based motor home, and tow a Subaru Crosstrek.
The 5 Star dosen't really give a great deal of added hp. Maybe an extra 10-15. But what it really does is re-program the trans, to the extent that it is a lot more "pleasureable" to drive. In a lot of situations it gets rid of the trans dropping from 5th gear/od, down into the "screaming 3rd" gear when going up a mild grade.
Don't know what type of rig you have, but if you have been on an xway at, lets say 65 mph, and started up a grade, lets say 5%, you know that after 100-200 yards, the trand will drop to 3rd gear, and rpm's go from 2300 up to 3600-3700 trying to maintain speed. The 5 Star lets it drop into 4th gear,while maintaining speed, and will,at some point if needed, then drop into 3rd.
And with the 5 Star, once you hit the crest of the grade, it will quickly drop the trans back to 5th, where with the stock tune it would stay in the "screaming 3rd" for a lot longer than necessary.
As for it "getting better milage" in a roundabout way it might simply by the fact that by not letting the tranny drop into 3rd, thus raising the rpm's by almost double, it uses a blt less fuel. On the flip side, just like a car or mc, making more hp uses more fues, so I guess it even's out in the end.
I have not noticed any less fuel usage or drop in mpg, but then again, I'm not too concerned with milage...it is what it is, pushing a 6 ton box thru the air at 65 mph, towing a 3200 lb car.
The added bit of hp does help, and is noticible under acceleration, like an entry ramp to an xway. But that extra 10-15 hp is about all your going to get. And, the 5 Star is tuned to use 87 octane fuel. Anything else is just a waste.
Other tuners may give an added hp increase by retuning to use mid or high test, but their after hp. Trans shift points stay the same, so it's not helping where our heave rv's need it.
If I owned a pickup with a V-10, and used it as a daily driver, I would look at the other tuners for pure hp gains, and I'm sure just the base Ford V-10 van or cut a way would do great with them. But our rv's come pretty much loaded out from the rv factory, almost at their limit, so just adding hp that requires mid or high test, without reprograming the trans to take advantage of the hp, dosen't help.
I've got around 5000 miles on the tune now, and have been thru the mountains in Va, Pa, NC, and SC, and the difference/change in "driveability" is very noticible. Personally, I'm very happy with the tune, and what it does, and I would buy it again.
Grumpy :thumb:

joss 10-05-2015 05:55 AM

tuning a gas motor....no epa probs..... tuning a diesel motor a whole nother ballgame... sct has tuners for both.

grumpy0374 10-05-2015 06:35 AM

MW, also, I think a lot of the negative responses come from those who don't understand what a "tune" does or is capable of. They were expecting a cure all for their rigs.
Remember, the ecu controlls both the engine and trans, and I think 5 Star did most of the mods on the trans side. Hard to tune both with one ecu and one tuner. I imagine if the engine and trans were controlled by seperate ecu's, where a seperate tune could be "written" for each, the gains would be outstanding. But that would also probably require using mid or high test fuel, and then everyone would start complaining about the added expense and lower mpg (it takes more fuel to make more hp). Just can't make everyone happy.
The 5 Star is not a cure all, but it does help make driving a lot nicer.
Grumpy

cpaulsen 10-05-2015 06:53 AM

Have had my 5Star for a while with my V-10. Would not give it up....holds the gears longer which keeps the trans cooler. Use the tow mod for pulling my 5ver and the performance tune when not. Give Mike a call a call @ 5Star...all your questions will be answered!

Riccochet 10-05-2015 12:53 PM

They also do good tuning for the F150 Ecoboost.

MWKingSD 10-05-2015 10:30 PM

Thanks guys, that helps. Did not appreciate the emphasis on shift points from what's on their website.

5 Star 12-15-2015 09:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by grumpy0374 (Post 2771622)
MW, also, I think a lot of the negative responses come from those who don't understand what a "tune" does or is capable of. They were expecting a cure all for their rigs.
Remember, the ecu controlls both the engine and trans, and I think 5 Star did most of the mods on the trans side. Hard to tune both with one ecu and one tuner. I imagine if the engine and trans were controlled by seperate ecu's, where a seperate tune could be "written" for each, the gains would be outstanding. But that would also probably require using mid or high test fuel, and then everyone would start complaining about the added expense and lower mpg (it takes more fuel to make more hp). Just can't make everyone happy.
The 5 Star is not a cure all, but it does help make driving a lot nicer.
Grumpy

We appreciate your feedback grumpy! We greatly appreciate you taking the time to help another member out!

5 Star 12-15-2015 09:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MWKingSD (Post 2772809)
Thanks guys, that helps. Did not appreciate the emphasis on shift points from what's on their website.

MWKingSD,

Sorry to read the emphasis on the trans side of the tune wasn't useful for you. We aim the majority of our description towards the transmission tuning as most seek for changes more on this side for their vehicle. Our tunes for the RV are centered around our Daily Tow Tune. We can net great power from them in any octane, most typically use 87 octane. On 87 octane our latest test (performed by Bob Livingston of MotorHome Magazine) gained 32 hp and 75 lb ft over factory on 87 octane in a 2014 Class A featuring a 3V motor.

Most of our test grounds range from Florence, SC up through the Saluda Pass. Through our testing we hit extreme grades, rolling hills, etc. We've road tested as far as Phoenix, AZ. We perform our own dyno tuning in house to perfect all of our engine parameters. Same is true for all of the F-series applications, vans, cars and GM applications we tune. Will all our tunes we aim to provide usable power for your drive as well as to enhance your driving experience.

5 Star 12-15-2015 09:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Riccochet (Post 2772093)
They also do good tuning for the F150 Ecoboost.

Thank you Riccochet! The EB's have been a very responsive platform to tune. The 2.7L has been a nice surprise too in the power, economy and drivability we were able to get from it. Gained another +50 hp and +115 lb ft out of it while still netting 24 mpg.

stimie 09-13-2020 03:00 AM

Thumbs up on 5 star tuner
 
We recently installed a Five Star SCT tuner in our 2001 Coachmen 321DS Ford V10.
The results were quite impressive. After completing our first road trip after the install, from central Ohio to Smoky Mountain National Park in North Carolina and back a big improvement in driving was realized.
We tow an enclosed trailer heavily laden with motorcycles and gear. Prior to the install, our rig struggled to climb the grades in the Knoxville area southward. So much so that the high engine rpms was a major concern.
With the tuner we found that when using cruise control the rig lost 5-7 mph on the same grades, and the tranny shifted much smoother without the 4-5000 rpm downshift.
We did upgade to mid grade as well, and this seemed to negate any drop in mpg.
A great product that performs as advertised. Worth every penny.

WVI 09-15-2020 08:27 PM

Some day, I'll get the 5 Star for my van....some day!


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