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Discussion Starter · #101 ·
Ok here's my early impressions of the OpenFlash tune.

On the experience itself
1. Shiv (the owner) is very fast to respond to emails and answered my questions late at night. Definitely not a 9-5 guy and we also communicated over text to coordinate the meet up, which was very handy.
2. Since I live a 30 minute ride from his home office he invited me to just ride over and he would do the necessary disassembly to get to the ECU for a minor labor charge, so that was super convenient. No shipping and waiting for the ECU, I was in and out in less than an hour.
3. Shiv's very personable and likes to bench race, plus we know a lot of the same people in the Bay Area racer community. He is also a proper track nut - in his driveway he had a track-only 911 RS3, a Ferrari 458, a Panigale V4R with properly shredded slicks, an S1000RR, a Streetfighter V4S also setup for track duty, to go along with an 890R, a 1290R, and some other toys. So he clearly plays in the same sandbox where he works.
4. Knowing the 890R is his favorite street bike and the ECU flash has been designed on my bike ridden on my roads and my tracks gives me a lot of confidence that it's not just going to be a watered down "kind of fit everywhere" tune.
5. After finishing the tune he took the bike for a test ride to make sure everything felt good, and when I got home I had a text waiting from him asking how the bike felt and if he could help answer any questions. So while I can't speak to other's experience (earlier in this thread there was a mention of grumblings in the Miata community), my interaction with him was very positive from start to finish.

Ok, now for the tune itself. I rode a bit of steady state freeway followed by 30 minutes of very twisty 2nd gear corners followed by some city street. Impressions in no particular order:

- Throttle feels much more directly connected to the engine, rolling on and off feels very smooth without any lag, hesitation, or excessive engine braking. I would describe it as a 1:1 connection between right hand and rear tire. The fueling always felt good to me, but now it feels great. No surging (even though it was only minor before) on the freeway.

- Power off idle is much better, leaving a stop light it doesn’t feel like it hesitates or need revs to come on. the power just builds smoothly from the start.

- The whole power band feels very "rich", flat without any dips.

- Freeway roll-on acceleration at speed is noticeably better even in 6th, very obvious in 3/4 gear. I didn't need to downshift to pass at freeway speed.

- Power feels stronger throughout the powerband. It's not earth shattering, but definitely beefier, especially in the midrange. The more noticeable change is the lack of dips or any surging at steady throttle. Torque also feels flat and stronger.

- Top end feels stronger and it doesn't taper off near redline, I didn't have to short shift because it wheezes out up top, instead it pulled all the way to the limit. I can't be sure and will need to test it more, but it seems like the rev limit increased because it was still pulling when the shift was flashing which is usually when I'm about to hit the soft rev limiter. Maybe just my imagination or a different feel due to the better power up top, but either way it let me keep the bike in 2nd gear and ride revs up and down the range in the tight stuff and the quicker sections between corners, which was fun.

So it's still early days and I'm excited to try it at the track next month, but initial impressions are very positive. The TL;DR version (which I guess should go up top) is that the bike feels stronger, smoother, and more responsive, and it made an already great bike even better. I've no experience with any of the other tuning options, or have any dyno numbers to share, so I can't say how the OpenFlash compares to the others as far as optimum gains and rideability. But for me the convenience of not having to install a piggyback system, tinker with finding a Windows laptop and mess around with downloaded maps, get a full tune across the rev range without messing up the cruise control or throw an engine check light (like the RW race maps), have a local tuner who can offer support and future updates a 30 minute ride from me (and also frequents the same track days I do and can help out in person with any issues that may arise), combined with a noticeable improvement in ride quality and engine feel, makes it a clear win in my book.
@falkdal It's been a week. Any more impressions on the ECU flash?
 

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@EvansB2 Did he read your ECU?
Yes. He said it was very similar to the 890 ECU. Still, I won’t be getting it tuned until after I install the Rottweiler intake kit that is being developed now. At work, we are currently working on an ECU flashing story. Shiv flashed a couple of bikes, but to finish the story, we need to ride the bikes at the track.
 

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Discussion Starter · #104 ·
Yes. He said it was very similar to the 890 ECU. Still, I won’t be getting it tuned until after I install the Rottweiler intake kit that is being developed now. At work, we are currently working on an ECU flashing story. Shiv flashed a couple of bikes, but to finish the story, we need to ride the bikes at the track.
@EvansB2 Thank you for the update.
 

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@WishIwasFaster sorry for the radio silence, it was a hectic week at work. I did get out today for a 300 mile run all around the backroads of NorCal, and the bike behaved beautifully. To those who have asked, cruise control and all rider modes work normally, there are no changes to any of that. Engine braking is reduced which I really like because there's less chassis pitch on throttle roll on/off, so my corner entries are smoother and on the exit I can roll on earlier. The biggest thing is there's just no lag or hesitation when rolling on - coming out of a corner I get on the gas and there's a surge of power immediately that gives an incredible feeling of connection to the rear tire.

It definitely feels stronger but that's of course something to leave for the dyno if we want to get specific, but I can say that the entire character of the engine feels much smoother, more refined, and easier to control. The words I keep coming back to in my mind are "rich and buttery", if that makes sense. :)

I was riding with @jmardy who used to own my 890, and we swapped bikes for a while. He commented on the engine braking, I think it caught him by surprise, but was really impressed with the power delivery.

6476
 

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Discussion Starter · #107 ·
@WishIwasFaster sorry for the radio silence, it was a hectic week at work. I did get out today for a 300 mile run all around the backroads of NorCal, and the bike behaved beautifully. To those who have asked, cruise control and all rider modes work normally, there are no changes to any of that. Engine braking is reduced which I really like because there's less chassis pitch on throttle roll on/off, so my corner entries are smoother and on the exit I can roll on earlier. The biggest thing is there's just no lag or hesitation when rolling on - coming out of a corner I get on the gas and there's a surge of power immediately that gives an incredible feeling of connection to the rear tire.

It definitely feels stronger but that's of course something to leave for the dyno if we want to get specific, but I can say that the entire character of the engine feels much smoother, more refined, and easier to control. The words I keep coming back to in my mind are "rich and buttery", if that makes sense. :)

I was riding with @jmardy who used to own my 890, and we swapped bikes for a while. He commented on the engine braking, I think it caught him by surprise, but was really impressed with the power delivery.

View attachment 6476
@falkdal No worries. We all get busy. Thanks for the update. The ECU flash is looking better and better. :)
 

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It’s very good for a stock bike, but the flash definitely made it smoother and filled in the curve nicely, plus added some power across the rev range.
 

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Discussion Starter · #111 ·
It’s very good for a stock bike, but the flash definitely made it smoother and filled in the curve nicely, plus added some power across the rev range.
No doubt to meet Euro 5 it had to make some fueling compromises. I'm glad it worked out for you. :)
 

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I'd only consider messing with that if I find the fueling objectionable, which I really doubt. The issue for me is RANGE. It's already marginal at best, so don't want it any worse. But I believe a good tune might make the bike even better. The good news is I have pretty good throttle control, and so far haven't needed any help, even with the touchy BMWs I've owned, especially the newer ones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #113 ·
I'd only consider messing with that if I find the fueling objectionable, which I really doubt. The issue for me is RANGE. It's already marginal at best, so don't want it any worse. But I believe a good tune might make the bike even better. The good news is I have pretty good throttle control, and so far haven't needed any help, even with the touchy BMWs I've owned, especially the newer ones.
At 50 mpg that’s 180 miles. That’s pretty good. You can nit pick all day long. But at the end of the day, the 890R is one sweet ride. 😀
 

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And I'm not sure what the range issue is? Both of my 890's ALWAYS got between 59 and 63 mpg. Always. Before and after tune.
 

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Discussion Starter · #115 ·
And I'm not sure what the range issue is? Both of my 890's ALWAYS got between 59 and 63 mpg. Always. Before and after tune.
Even better. At 270 lbs. I’m only getting about 45. After I break it in and can rev it. Maybe less. I’m ok with it. It’s a blast to ride. 😀
 

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My fuel mileage improved as the engine broke in.
 

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The issue for me is RANGE.
How much range do you need? - Range is only a serious issue for me (with the 790D) for when I do my 2000km runs to see my mum in the UK (currently curtailed by COVID). This is sustained high (not exactly legal) speed for at least 2 hours per (leg, bum, bladder) stretch. If you need much more then you'll also need to be COMFY for more.

This has become an issue for me and I am looking for LONG RANGE alternatives - 400-450km stretches. That's centre of Spain to the coast with no stops. If you want STELLAR non-stop range you'll need a bigger tank - period. Or simply carry a few MSR camping bottles. Another easy, though not exactly cheap, way to get more range with no real world performance loss is at hand . KTM call it the Adventure. Much bigger tank.

 

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