How To Make Your LNF Fast

Discussion in '2.0: LNF' started by Projekt, Jul 19, 2009.

  1. Projekt

    Projekt Full Access Member

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    This is a thread to help give memebers a direction in modding their LNF.

    So far, its only been a year and a half since the Cobalt SS/TC has been out..however the aftermarket support is not to bad..ill list some mods memebers should get.

    1. Tune
    A tune should be any LNF’s first performance modification. Why you ask? Because the LNF ECU has what is called a “learn down” feature. This “learn down” feature doesn’t allow the car to produce more then what it’s rated at (260 crank horsepower). A tune allows to by-pass this feature and unlocks the cars true potential. You’re probably wondering what tuning options are available, ill list a few and give a un-biased opinion on them.

    1.A) HP Tuners: Hptuners is a “do it yourself” type-tuning program. It allows people to purchase software to modify cars ECU. A very skilled tuner with HP tuners can give your LNF a lot of horsepower well remaining still very reliable, however this method can end up costing a lot of money depending on what your “skilled tuner” charges. Another risk factor is running into a tuner who is not as skilled as the next guy. This can run huge risks in damaging your car in the long run, however with the LNF it is a some-what easy car to tune.

    1.B) Trifecta: Trifecta is a tuning company owned by a man who is very popular in our LNF world. His name is Vince. Vince owns and operates this company as well as writes the tunes for his clients. How it works is a client will order a tune from Vince, Vince will ether find a dealer close to the clients location or send the client a GT tuner unit to upload the tunes. Trifecta first got on our LNF radar by producing the cheapest most effective power-creating tune. For roughly 200 dollars a LNF owner can get upwards to 60 whp and 60+ wtq from stock. The downsides to Trifecta is that if you don’t get it through a dealer you will need to order a GT tuner unit from Vince in order to revert back to stock tune (in case of going in for warranty). Vince is continually upgrading and testing new tunes out with our cars and advancing the limits of the LNF. I personally became a dealer for Trifecta after doing lots of research on tunes for our cars. I recommend Trifecta but do not bash the others (Hptuners or tuner shops) because you can get very good tunes from them as well.


    2. Downpipe
    A downpipe should be the second modification you pick to do on your vehicle. The stock downpipe has two very big cats on it, which are very restrictive. Getting a catless or non-catless downpipe will really wake up your vehicle. Depending on your states/countries emission laws you might decide to go with a catted downpipe. A catted downpipe will generally cost you more money and reduce your performance a slight amount, but will improve the sound of your cars exhaust note in most cases. I personally went with Clear Image Auto’s catless downpipe because it was the cheapest option (200 dollars group buy price) and personally owning CIA parts in the past, I knew it would be made top notch. The catless downpipe doesn’t sound bad on our cars until higher RPM’s. If you are worried about gather attention from the police or not passing emissions (my province has zero emission’s law) then a Catted downpipe should be for you. A few companies produce downpipes for our cars (Clear image, Dejon, Synapses, Hahn and ZZP) The Synapses and Hahn downpipes seem to be more expensive then the others but are very high in quality. The Dejon is around the same price as the Clear Image and ZZP but has been known to toss a code (due to no angled bung) the Clear image and ZZP are priced roughly the same and apparently toss no codes (I can only personally agree that the CIA tosses zero codes). All the downpipes I have looked into (listed above) have all meet the quality control standards so I can not say one is made better then the other, it should come down to price and customer loyalty from the companies.

    3. Chargepipe
    A charge pipe is the pipe that goes from the turbo-intercooler (hot side) and from intercooler-intake manifold (cold side). The stock piping is very restrictive and is a known problem in our cars to break or come apart. A lot of owners find this a annoyance and spring to upgrade to a new charge pipe. There are two styles of hot side charge pipes one can go with.

    3.A) Appearance style charge pipes. The appearance style charge pipe option is for the person who wants their engine bay to look “nicer” then the next guys. It is in the same form as the stock charge pipe.
    [​IMG]
    Dejon Charge pipe

    3.B) Performance style charge pipes. The performance style charge pipe is just as it sounds. It comes right over the head of the LNF producing maximum airflow.
    [​IMG]
    Injen Charge Pipe

    In my personally opinion id prefer the performance style charge pipe, because this is a “how to make your LNF fast” thread not a appearance thread. I personally really like the Clear image automotive performance charge pipe, however their price tag includes both the hot side and cold side. If you are just looking for a hot side upgrade id recommend checking out the Injen charge pipe. Its almost identical to the clear image one and costs roughly 210 dollars.


    4. Cat-back
    A cat-back is pretty self-explanatory. It’s the exhaust from the cat-back (or downpipe back). The only upgrade us LNF owners should do is 3-inch cat-back. You will see a lot of owners do “Muffler deletes” or “straight pipes” but in my opinion they sound like garbage and is a cheap “omg faster” mode. You don’t need to break the bank when purchasing a cat-back. A few companies offer us 3-inch cat-backs (Hahn, Clear Image, Mandrelexhaustsystem and Magnaflow). The one I would recommend is the Mandrelexhausysytem or MSE exhaust. http://www.mandrelexhaustsystems.com/servlet/the-Car-Exhaust-cln-05-dsh-09-Chevy-Cobalt/Categories
    They offer 3-inch exhausts in ether aluminized (330 dollars) or Stainless (405 dollars) with your choice of brand name mufflers (Borla or Magnaflow). IMO if you working on a budget and want well put together exhaust this should be your route.


    5. Intercooler
    An intercooler helps cool the air before it enters your engine. This will probably be the most expensive upgrade for LNF owners. Currently there are three manufactures I can think of who make Intercoolers specifically for our LNF’s (yes there are universal intercoolers). Hahn, Synapses and Crazysteve. Hahn and Synapses both make very good quality intercoolers but at a price, well Crazysteve’s seems to be the cheaper of the two, I have very little information on their products. I personally am leaving an intercooler for the last upgrade well I wait for more manufactures to produce more of them for our selection.


    If anyone has any information i should add please feel free to post it in here or PM me. hope this helps you inspiring LNF modders out!!!
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2009
  2. cobalt123

    cobalt123 Platinum Member

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    good post
     
  3. FASTL61

    FASTL61 Platinum Member

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    Very nice write up.
     
  4. wardzach2007

    wardzach2007 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    What about LSJ's?????? :( haha
     
  5. FASTL61

    FASTL61 Platinum Member

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    That sounds like a job for you ward :D
     
  6. cobalt123

    cobalt123 Platinum Member

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    nice info
     
  7. wardzach2007

    wardzach2007 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    you sound like my coach by calling me by my last name.

    "get in there Ward, you're up." hahaha

    I might do it when I have time. :)
     
  8. 08inBama

    08inBama Full Access Member

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    just a heads up and i'm not in any way associated with any vendors, but ZZP is much cheaper than the others on the downpipe:

    with no cat its $199

    with a cat its $289

    and that is 304 stainless steel, not aluminum, they also do NOT have it listed on the web site, but they DO have a catback for us... without a resonator its $520, with a resonator its $600....

    does MS have a resonator option? that is a great fighter of drone and IMO is a must for a catback... I am not a fan of no resonator as its a little too raspy for my taste
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2009
  9. M-Dub

    M-Dub Full Access Member

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    Downpipes...

    Make sure if you don't have a "tuner" close you get the angled 02 bung or you will set overcat temp codes.

    If you have HPTuners set your COT to 1.000 across the board to prevent any "abnormal" effects from COT.

    Intakes... SUCK PERIOD for this car. If you are not tuned, or cannnot be tuned... DO NOT BUY ONE. If you are tuned or tune yourself get a full tank of gas, and do lots and lots of logs while scanning your Long term and short term fuel trims or (LTFT and STFTs).

    That will show you how far off your MAF is, and then to calibrate your maf you take those figures and either subtract or add that percentage into your MAF table!

    Takes a long time... you need to do long logs no WOT stuff yet! Work on that to get your MAF dialed in....

    It's a PITA but it's what you have to do on this car if you want an intake!
     
  10. Jn2

    Jn2 Full Access Member

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    We offer charge pipes too , and a catback, no downpipe though, unless someone wants to send one in
     

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