My car is running on a Megasquirt1 but since getting an LX9 I decided I would need another DIY ECU. So although I kinda like my MS1 its getting a bit long in the tooth and the MS2 and MS3 seemed like a lot of $ so I decided to try my luck with a Speeduino.
The driving force behind it is a young Australian fella called Josh Stewart. I don't know Josh and I have no commerical or otherwise interest in Speeduino but the website and some videos convinced me that dropping 150$ CAD to try it out would be a bit of a no brainer.
This series of journal posts talks you through my experience.
* Pre-requisite knowledge *
If you know about EFI and ECUs then you should be in good shape. I already knew how to solder and how to wire up a conventional ODB1/2 car and I'd already successfully built and run a MS1 complete with software programming and tuning.
* Ordering *
The website has an online store. I got the kit. Unlike MS1 the Speeduino is still in development so things move pretty fast. I got the v0.4 board and component kit. I separately ordered an Arduino Mega 2560 from Amazon. Altogether and delivered to my door it was like 150$.
The Speeduino kit was back-ordered. I ordered in early Dec and it came in early Feb. Thats a bit of a wait even with air mail, Christmas and so on. So if you go this route order in plenty of time.
* Unboxing *
Stuff came airmail in a cardboard box containing all the components in nice antistatic and comprehensively labeled bags. I did a quick sanity check and it all looked above board.
* Assembly *
Josh provides nice instructions by PDF and also by video. You git the resistors first, then diodes, capacitors, transistors, ICs and edge connectors. The Arduino piggybacks on the Speeduino board by means of a riser.
* Parts *
They were all there although my board had 4 8-pin DIP sockets and chips with only 3 provided in the kit. Im checking to see if thats correct. If so I screwed up and put one of the sockets in the wrong place.
* Discrepancies *
There were 2 diodes and a couple of resistors left over. There were a couple of things, like a PC disk-style power connector missing. At least when compared to pictures of complete units. . I can get the issing parts from the electronics place in the city (2.5 hour round trip) or Amazon but clearly it would have been better if it had been right first time. The board I have looks a bit different to the ones pictured on the net. This isn't necessarily bad but it does illustrate the rapidly changing, developmental level of the product. Some people might be OK with that and some not.
* Comparison to MegaSquirt1 *
Similar experience for ordering. The MS1 came faster. Packaging was similar. The Speeduino was cheaper but didnt come with a box. I can program a speeduino from a PC whereas you have to mess about with jumpers to program the MS1 (eg to the MSExtra code). The MS1 is an older chip programmed in assembler, the Speeduino uses an Arduino - a modern chip you program using a C-type language. The Arduino is mass produced so if I fry the "brain" I can just get another for like 20 bucks. Ive no idea where Id get a new chip for the MS1. Assembly instructions, support and tweaks for MS1 are more mature as you'd expect but the Speeduino is more versatile with support for idle control, VVT and other modern-engine bits and pieces. There are more differences of course and I'll get to them as this series develops.