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Well my chase truck might be dead

Zambo

Well-Known Member
Brought my chase truck in to get it prepped for the race like I do every year. This was two weeks ago. Got the oil, filters, fluids etc serviced as always. Told the guy I thought the 7.3L was a little gutless in the power department, and although I know these aren't the most powerful engines ever made it seemed to be a little softer than normal. Not interested in rolling coal or any of those other things guys do to their diesel trucks, I just wanted to know if something was broken.

Long story short, a piggyback chip was installed and it fried my computer. Just like I DIDN'T want. Got a new (used) computer installed yesterday and it doesn't work either. It may have been bad too so got one more PCM to try tomorrow morning if it arrives as scheduled. If this doesn't fix the truck, I am completely SOL. This is a crew cab truck that was going to be carrying 4 guys and all my tools, parts, etc.

At this point I am open to ideas. I'm looking at rental vans, I'm looking at buying a used truck or van and reselling it when I get back, hell I'm looking at damn near anything that'll get us moving if my truck isn't fixed tomorrow. Mainly I need 4 seats and room for some gear. If anybody has any ideas I'm all ears.

BTW, usually our big adventure doesn't start until day 3 during this race....I guess this year maybe the adventure really begins before we even cross the border.
 

MasTacos

Well-Known Member
My opinion is that buying a truck isn't really going to work since the title won't clear quickly and the it might be a bit awkward at the border. I'm not sure how the insurance will work for something that's in-process on having the title transition.

If it's not fixed (and I'd throw my efforts behind that) I'd recommend seeing if you can borrow something then check into renting since it seems like a PITA to do. Chris Western (from Off-Road Rush in Australia) has rented vehicles for his B1000 crew a few times in the past so I know it can be done.
 

3 Amigos Racing

Well-Known Member
I have a 2007 Dodge 2500 crew cab, Cummins short bed 4x4. Baja GPS and chase radio.. Good condition. Tags were due in Jan 2017. Get to Phoenix, get emission tested (2 hours and $25) and pay new tags $500? And .25 cents a mile all miles . . Bring it back with a case of real mexi corona , t shirt and a class win.. If it helps offer is real..
 

Zambo

Well-Known Member
My opinion is that buying a truck isn't really going to work since the title won't clear quickly and the it might be a bit awkward at the border. I'm not sure how the insurance will work for something that's in-process on having the title transition.

If it's not fixed (and I'd throw my efforts behind that) I'd recommend seeing if you can borrow something then check into renting since it seems like a PITA to do. Chris Western (from Off-Road Rush in Australia) has rented vehicles for his B1000 crew a few times in the past so I know it can be done.
Thanks for the input. I can't put any effort into fixing my truck beyond what the guy at the shop can do. As for buying a truck I've never needed the title at the border just the registration. I can walk in and register a truck in an hour. Insurance just takes a few minutes on the phone. I've talked to a couple of rental places already and no one has agreed to let a van go more than a couple hundred miles south. And it's expensive as hell. Almost as much as buying a used vehicle.
 

Zac Reish

Well-Known Member
I got a 95, 4 door F350, manual, 2wd, with a 7.3 diesel and new clutch that I use as a work truck. 230,000 miles $5,000. It was used all day today to tow a skid steer around. fair condition, it would get the job done. let me know if you want it.
 

Zambo

Well-Known Member
I got a 95, 4 door F350, manual, 2wd, with a 7.3 diesel and new clutch that I use as a work truck. 230,000 miles $5,000. It was used all day today to tow a skid steer around. fair condition, it would get the job done. let me know if you want it.
Thanks Zac where are you located? I might do it.
 

Chris Tobin

Well-Known Member
Brought my chase truck in to get it prepped for the race like I do every year. This was two weeks ago. Got the oil, filters, fluids etc serviced as always. Told the guy I thought the 7.3L was a little gutless in the power department, and although I know these aren't the most powerful engines ever made it seemed to be a little softer than normal. Not interested in rolling coal or any of those other things guys do to their diesel trucks, I just wanted to know if something was broken.

Long story short, a piggyback chip was installed and it fried my computer. Just like I DIDN'T want. Got a new (used) computer installed yesterday and it doesn't work either. It may have been bad too so got one more PCM to try tomorrow morning if it arrives as scheduled. If this doesn't fix the truck, I am completely SOL. This is a crew cab truck that was going to be carrying 4 guys and all my tools, parts, etc.

At this point I am open to ideas. I'm looking at rental vans, I'm looking at buying a used truck or van and reselling it when I get back, hell I'm looking at damn near anything that'll get us moving if my truck isn't fixed tomorrow. Mainly I need 4 seats and room for some gear. If anybody has any ideas I'm all ears.

BTW, usually our big adventure doesn't start until day 3 during this race....I guess this year maybe the adventure really begins before we even cross the border.
Zambo, call the guys at Swamps Diesel 866.595.8724 first thing in the morning. They are one of the most knowledgeable shops I know of on the 7.3L Power Stroke and they may be able to help out over the phone. Look at the traces on the board where the chip was installed, if they were not cleaned or too aggressively cleaned they can cause problems. Tell them that I suggested you call and hopefully they can help you out with some troubleshooting and get you down the road.

Doing a chip on a 7.3L is VERY common and should be a pain free experience, and should help a good amount in the power, drivability and even fuel mileage departments.

I hope they can help...

CT
 

blue dog

Well-Known Member
Zambo, the pcm fried when the chip was installed ? Like a edge box or something ? Is it removed now ?
 

Zambo

Well-Known Member
Thanks Chris I'll look into that. Mike I don't know exactly how it happened this was all done at the local diesel place. The guy went ahead and tried to chip it, and then after he drove it once the motor wouldn't run any more. It started up for a few seconds when he put a new computer in (no chip) and it died again after a few seconds. Confidence level is zero that this is going to be fixed by Friday. I'll know fairly early tomorrow supposedly. Pretty stoked that this truck, which I own almost exclusively for the purpose of supporting this race once a year, is going to be out of commission.
 

blue dog

Well-Known Member
Sorry to hear this Zambo. I will dig for a number of someone in Santee that may be able to help you. Call me mid morning tomorrow.
 

Zac Reish

Well-Known Member
Riverside. It will be available after 5 today. We're using it. I hope the rear axel of my dually gets repaired by monday. Otherwise I'll still need her. If you want come take it for a test drive. If you don't want it no biggy. Its stock. No chips no bs.
 

Zambo

Well-Known Member
Thanks Zac I'll let you know.

So after some more questions, the chip involved was a TS chip with the 6 position dial (I obviously know very little about this stuff). Supposedly the chip can't "fry" a computer because it doesn't send any info to the computer, it just changes the info coming out of the computer a little, or words to that effect. After more questions, evidently when they first put it together it ran fine and strong. Then when they went to hard mount the computer back in the fenderwell was when it stopped running. The scanner is saying to turn the ignition on because its not sensing anything. I can see that the first inclination was that the computer somehow went bad, but I think this sounds like a wiring problem. The guy is chasing down the wiring right now and hopefully he finds something. At this point I'd almost rather know that it is for sure out of commission so I could pull the trigger on a backup plan because I know sure as hell if I jump through a bunch of hoops to get an alternate vehicle, the second I close the deal he's gonna call me and tell me its fixed.
 

Rlovell

Member
Thanks Zac I'll let you know.

So after some more questions, the chip involved was a TS chip with the 6 position dial (I obviously know very little about this stuff). Supposedly the chip can't "fry" a computer because it doesn't send any info to the computer, it just changes the info coming out of the computer a little, or words to that effect. After more questions, evidently when they first put it together it ran fine and strong. Then when they went to hard mount the computer back in the fenderwell was when it stopped running. The scanner is saying to turn the ignition on because its not sensing anything. I can see that the first inclination was that the computer somehow went bad, but I think this sounds like a wiring problem. The guy is chasing down the wiring right now and hopefully he finds something. At this point I'd almost rather know that it is for sure out of commission so I could pull the trigger on a backup plan because I know sure as hell if I jump through a bunch of hoops to get an alternate vehicle, the second I close the deal he's gonna call me and tell me its fixed.
Look at the wire harness under the hood near the steering shaft. Mine has worn over the years resulting in chaffed wires. Sounds like a loose or chaffed wire between the firewall (PCM connection) and the engine. Good luck, hope to see you down there!
 

Chris Tobin

Well-Known Member
Thanks Zac I'll let you know.

So after some more questions, the chip involved was a TS chip with the 6 position dial (I obviously know very little about this stuff). Supposedly the chip can't "fry" a computer because it doesn't send any info to the computer, it just changes the info coming out of the computer a little, or words to that effect. After more questions, evidently when they first put it together it ran fine and strong. Then when they went to hard mount the computer back in the fenderwell was when it stopped running. The scanner is saying to turn the ignition on because its not sensing anything. I can see that the first inclination was that the computer somehow went bad, but I think this sounds like a wiring problem. The guy is chasing down the wiring right now and hopefully he finds something. At this point I'd almost rather know that it is for sure out of commission so I could pull the trigger on a backup plan because I know sure as hell if I jump through a bunch of hoops to get an alternate vehicle, the second I close the deal he's gonna call me and tell me its fixed.
Correct, the TS chips are HEAVILY used by most shops... Call the guys at Swamps, we had this issue on one truck during an install and I can't remember what the solution was, but they work on them every day and will have some good suggestions...
 

Zambo

Well-Known Member
Correct, the TS chips are HEAVILY used by most shops... Call the guys at Swamps, we had this issue on one truck during an install and I can't remember what the solution was, but they work on them every day and will have some good suggestions...
I talked to them just a few minutes ago and evidently the chip can actually fry the computer. So who knows.... evidently my pcm is rare and not sitting on many shelves. Swamps can rebuild mine if we need but not in time for the race.
 

Zambo

Well-Known Member
Truck still doesn't run. Found a power wire that is intermittent when moving the harness around. Probably shorted the wire while the pcm was plugged in and fried it. The two replacements were incorrect as received. So at this point highly doubtful the truck is making the trip. Gonna have to check and insulate the harness and get the computer rebuilt.

Good news is I have a loaner replacement truck offered to me by a friend, and I have gotten access to a van in Ensenada if something else goes wrong. Thanks for all the tips and ideas fellas, Muchas Gracias.
 

blue dog

Well-Known Member
Zambo, reach out to Rafa. He has a network in Ensenada that can more then likely get you a chase rig.

Pin it to win it, rubber side down.
 

Zambo

Well-Known Member
PIn it to win it...lol. Our motto is cruise it or lose it. :)

Don't forget I have Baja Rudy on the team, otherwise known as Mexahontas or Sacajewribe. He will guide us though the hinterlands.
 
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