Saturday, May 14, 2016

Ford Mustang - Pull DTC Codes

Did you know you can pull your own codes without a handheld scanner if you have the tech package on your Ford Mustang? Neither did I until today, thanks to a tip from 5LHO on MustangEvolution.

Simply press and hold the 3 and 6 button simultaneously for a few seconds and follow the on screen prompts.

How to pull codes without a scanner

How to pull codes without a scanner



Friday, November 20, 2015

Ford Mustang GT 2014 - Build List

This post will serve as a build list for The Beast; a Deep Impact Blue 2014 Mustang GT, and will be updated as mods are added. Below are a few stock shots.

2014 Mustang GT - Deep Impact Blue - k1DBLITZ

2014 Mustang GT - Deep Impact Blue - k1DBLITZ2014 Mustang GT - Deep Impact Blue - k1DBLITZ

2014 Mustang GT - Deep Impact Blue - k1DBLITZ

The Beast came from the factory with the following options as standard equipment included at no extra charge:


EXTERIOR

  • AUTO HEADLAMPS
  • STAINLESS STEEL DUAL EXHAUST
  • REAR DECKLID SPOILER
  • LED SEQUENTIAL TAILLAMPS
  • HID PROJECTOR HEADLAMPS

INTERIOR
  • LEATHER TRIM SPORT SEATS
  • POWER 6-WAY DRIVERS SEAT
  • MANUAL 2-WAY FRONT PASSENGER SEAT
  • CENTER CONSOLE W/ARMREST
  • AMBIENT LIGHTING
  • LEATHER WRAPPED STEERING WHEEL CRUISE CONTROL & TILT
  • SHAKER AUDIO SYSTEM AM/FM/SINGLE CD/MP3
  • SYNC VOICE ACTIVATED SYSTEM
  • SIRIUS SAT
  • SPLIT FOLD REAR SEAT
  • FRONT FLOOR MATS - BLACK
  • DUAL ILLUMINATED VANITY MIRRORS
  • 4.2" LCD SCREEN
FUNCTIONAL
  • ELECTRIC POWER ASSIST STEERING
  • EASY FUEL CAPLESS FILLER
  • POWER POINTS (2)
  • POWER WINDOWS, LOCKS, MIRRORS, REMOTE KEYLESS ENTRY
  • UNIVERSAL GARAGE DOOR OPENER
  • LIMITED SLIP REAR AXLE
SAFETY/SECURITY
  • ADVANCETRAC W/ ESC
  • DUAL FRONT & SIDE AIRBAGS
  • LATCH CHILD SAFETY SYSTEM
  • SECURILOCK PASS ANTI THEFT
  • TIRE PRESSURE MONITOR SYSTEM
  • SOS POST CRASH ALERT SYSTEM
  • INTEGRATED SPOTTER MIRRORS
  • MYKEY
WARRANTY
  • 3YR/36000 BUMPER TO BUMPER
  • 5YR/60000 POWERTRAIN
  • 5YR/60000 ROADSIDE ASSIST

Below are the additional options included:

EQUIPMENT GROUP 400A

OPTIONAL EQUIPMENT
  • ELECTRONICS PACKAGE W/NAVIGATION
  • DUAL ZONE ELECTRONIC A/C
  • OVER THE TOP RACING STRIPES
  • MANUAL 4-WAY DRIVERS SEAT
  • RR SENSING SYS/SECURITY PACKAGE
  • ACTIVE ANTI-THEFT SYSTEM
  • WHEEL LOCKING KIT
  • REVERSE PARK ASSIST
  • 3.73 RATION LIMITED SLIP AXLE
  • TAPE STRIPE DELETE
  • BREMBO BRAKE PACKAGE
  • ,19" PREMIUM PAINTED ALUMINUM WHEEL
  • PAINTED SIDE MIRROR
  • REAR VIDEO CAMERA
  • SATIN BLACK TAPE STRIPE
  • RECARO MANUAL LEATHER SEATS
  • SHAKER PRO SYSTEM
  • V6/GT COUPE ACCESSORY PACKAGE1
  • QUARTER WINDOW LOUVERS
  • SIDE SCOOPS

...but The Beast™ didn't stay stock for long. Let the modding begin!


Magnaflow Competition Catback Exhaust


Magnaflow Competition Catback - Mustang GT - k1DBLITZ
The Beast needed to be able to growl before it could bite, and so exhaust was the number one priority after bringing it home. I considered both Borla and Bassani as I've had personal experience with both of those exhaust manufacturers. In the end, I took a chance with Magnaflow as they were the only company to also produce a catted X-pipe which I knew I would be installing soon after.

In particular, I chose the Magnaflow Competition catback which employs a straight through design. I personally prefer the sound of the straight through design as opposed to chambered. I ordered from Stage3Motorsports.com which had a price I couldn't refuse at the time. 


Odometer: 3800mi



Magnaflow Catted Tru-X X-Pipe


The Beast™ could definitely growl after adding the catback, but was still missing that deep menacing snarl I was after. The Magnaflow Catted Tru-X X-Pipe solved that problem and put a big smile on my face. A catted X-Pipe will create a deep, snarly, growling tone without being too raspy. However, there is a price to pay for buying a catted X. Catted mid pipes are more expensive then their offroad counterparts, but the cost is worth it in my opinion for several reasons.
  • It's loud without being obnoxiously loud
  • Street Legal (technically replacing a working cat is illegal)
  • No need for mil eliminators
  • No excessive popping
  • No gas smell
  • No tune required
  • Unique sound

Odometer: 3900mi




Aluminum One Piece Driveshaft


Aluminum One Piece Driveshaft - k1DBLITZ
Next up was an aluminum one piece driveshaft. This has to be one of my favorite mods from a daily driver perspective. The one piece driveshaft made the drivetrain much more snappy, tight, responsive, and smooooooth. The slack, slop, and clunk was gone. I only have but one regret. At the time I purchased my aluminum driveshaft they were only available in 4inch models and now they are available in 3 1/2 inch models. A half inch might not sound like much, but it's a world of difference in clearance underneath the vehicle when taking into account the increased diameter of the Magnaflow exhaust. I may purchase the smaller diameter driveshaft when I get around to lowering The Beast as I have a sneaking suspicion I will need the additional clearance.

Odometer: 3900mi


J&M Extreme Joint Lower Rear Control Arms


J&M Extreme Joint Lower Rear Control Arms - k1DBLITZThis is another one of my favorite mods so far as the difference was extremely noticeable. If you want to eliminate wheel hop, you need these control arms. The Beast™ has the Brembo package which includes the same rear lower control arms used on the GT500, however, even those weren't enough to combat wheel hop induced by 3:73 gears and a heavy foot. The J&M Extreme Joint Lower Rear Control Arms exceeded my expectations and then some! Wheel hop has been 90-95% eliminated., and as a side bonus, the rear suspension overall is much firmer. It feels as if stiffer springs have been installed, when in reality, it's just the J&M keeping the axle planted which in turn allows the springs to do their job more effectively. I highly recommend this part.

Odometer: 5200mi


Steeda Mustang Frame Rail and Torque Box Brace


Steeda Mustang Frame Rail & Torque Box BraceThese braces were welded in at the same time the LCA's were installed. I'm a fan of chassis stiffening and these bad boys fit the bill. They were a bit pricey, but the piece of mind provided by this component is worth it to me. These cleverly designed braces tie together the inner and outer frame rails and the lower control arm mount. This creates more predictable handling characteristics, helps reduce wheel hop, and will even eliminate squeaks and rattles that you may have picked up. But wait, there's more! If you order now, we'll throw in nothing else at no extra charge! 






Odometer: 5200mi




Blowfish Racing Shifter Bracket

If you have a manual transmission equipped Stang, this bracket is a must! Not only does it improve shifting 100%, it also doubles as a driveshaft loop. A bit of warning though, if you plan to install this in your garage like I did and you have an 4inch aluminum driveshaft and a Magnaflow X-pipe, get ready for some fun times! Clearance is extremely tight due to the increased diameter of the aforementioned components. In the end, it was worth it. No more nibbles, bites, or missed shifts due to lockouts. 



Odometer: 8025mi




Check back soon... More mods coming!

Update: 04/14/16

Yes, there really are more mods but I haven't taken the time to add them to this post yet. In the meantime, check out some pics on my Google+ gallery.

https://plus.google.com/u/0/collection/0LyPv 

Saturday, June 27, 2015

How to Fix Your Ford Sync (Mustang)

Not too long ago I started encountering problems with +Ford Motor Company Sync in my Mustang. The main problem was that the "mobile apps" functionality refused to function. When selecting mobile apps the unit would stop responding momentarily and eventually the sync lady would indicate the device was unavailable, or something along those lines. (I don't recall the exact error message)

I could, however, switch the media to bluetooth and stream +Pandora or +Amazon Music, but even that was behaving flaky at times.

I searched many forums and tried every suggestion, but to no avail. Here are some of the things I tried:

  • Deleting the phone from Sync and deleting Sync from my phone and reconnecting
  • Unchecking and then rechecking the media option in my bluetooth settings.
  • Renaming my phone / bluetooth name
  • Master reset of Sync
I know there were a few more things I tried but I can't recall what they were. I was at my wits end, the final solution that worked for people was to pull the fuse for Sync.

Here is how this accomplished on a Ford Mustang (2014)

The first thing you'll need to do is to pull the kick panel on the passenger side. Use the slot highlighted below to pull the panel.
Ford Mustang - Kick Panel
Ford Mustang Kick Panel


Once the kick panel has been removed, you'll see this flap. It's held in place by velcro. When you lift this flap you'll see another flap that is taped shut. Break the tape and open the flap.
Ford Mustang Fuse Panel Flap
Fuse Panel "Flap"

You will then need to remove fuse panel cover. Pinch the tabs highlighted below to remove. You'll notice this panel has the fuses identified by number, and is upside down.
Fuse Panel Cover
Fuse Panel Cover

The fuse we are interested in is fuse number 3. It's the 3rd one up, highlighted below. (blue, 15)
Fix My Sync - Fuse 3
Ford Sync - Fuse Number 3

Use a pair of needle nose pliers to pull this fuse. Wait a few seconds and then reinsert the fuse. Now follow these same instructions in reverse to put everything back in place.

You should now be able to successfully use the mobile apps functionality. WOO HOO!



Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Toggle Aero On and Off

Toggle Aero On and Off


Looking for a quick and handy way to toggle Aero on and off in Windows 7? Create a batch file out of the following and you're good to go. Executing this .bat will turn Aero on if it's off and off if it's on.

@echo off
sc interrogate uxsms | find "1062"
if %errorlevel%==0 goto :sc_start
sc stop uxsms
exit
:sc_start
sc start uxsms
exit

If you're feeling really fancy, you can bind the shortcut to a hot key! 

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Ford Racing Transmission Cooler - Installed

Ford Racing Transmission Cooler
Ford Racing Transmission Cooler
I just finished installing a Ford Racing Boss 302 Transmission Cooler on my 2014 Ford Mustang GT. Installation was a breeze. Just remove 4 bolts that hold the existing brace, slap on the tranny cooler and tighten the bolts. It takes longer to jack up the vehicle and set it back down then it does to install the transmission cooler.

While this particular Ford Racing transmission cooler is a passive design, it has been proven to lower transmission fluid temperatures 20-30 degrees.

As an unexpected bonus, I discovered the source of a metallic rattle I had been hearing since my Mangaflow X-Pipe was installed. Turns out the bolts on the clip just needed a few more cranks to be nice and snug.

I've read a few stories of the Mangnaflow pipes being shipped with defective cats, so I was much relieved to discover a simple and free fix.







Magnaflow X-Pipe Rattle Fix
Tighten Me - I could be loose...

Friday, December 19, 2014

Titanfall - Black Screen Fix - PC

Titanfall - Black Screen Bug - PC

I finally discovered a fix for the black screen bug when launching Titanfall on PC. I tried multiple things to no avail, but what finally worked for me was this:

Access your Titanfall installation directory. Select all files in this directory (exclude folders) and delete them.

Launch the game. The missing files will be downloaded from Origin. Once this completes and the game launches, be patient. You will see a black screen for 10-15 seconds and then you'll see the familiar Respawn logo.

Game on!




Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Gauntlet - How to set 1920 x 1080

Gauntlet - How to set 1920 x 1080


If you're having problems finding the resolution for 1920x1080 within the settings in Gauntlet for the
PC, you're not alone.

To cut to the chase, the option is there, you just can't see it.

Once you're on the last visible resolution (1776 x 10000) press down once more and you will have selected 1920 x 1080. Hit apply and you're good to go!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Dark Souls 2 - ENB Settings

Dark Souls 2 - GEM ENB Settings
Dark Souls 2 - GEM ENB
This is a quick blog post to share my settings for GeDoSato & GEM ENB. This is not a tutorial on how to install these mods.

Easiest way to use my settings would be to make a back up of both of your settings/ini files and replace with mine. (make sure you adjust the resolution to match your native res)

GeDoSato Beta7

# Lines starting with "#" are ignored by GeDoSaTo and used to provide documentation
# read them before changing anything!

########################################################################################
# Internal settings

# The amount of logging output for debugging purpose.
# Should be set to 0 if everything works fine for performance reasons.
logLevel 0

########################################################################################
# Graphics settings

# The actual rendering resolution you want to use,
# and how many Hz you want the game to think it works at.
#renderWidth 5120
#renderHeight 2880
#renderWidth 3840
#renderHeight 2160
#renderWidth 3200
#renderHeight 1800
renderWidth 2560
renderHeight 1440
reportedHz 60

# The resolution you want to downsample *to*.
# Should generally always be your output device pixel size and frequency.
# Writing something not supported by the display here will probably cause a crash.
#presentWidth 2560
#presentHeight 1440
presentWidth 1920
presentHeight 1080
#presentWidth 1280
#presentHeight 720
presentHz 60

# How many vertical traces to wait when presenting
# -1 = unchanged
# 0 = no vsync
# 1 = standard vsync
# 2 = half refresh rate (e.g. 30 on 60 Hz)
# 3 = 1/3rd refresh rate, etc.
presentInterval 1

# The type of scaling you want to use.
# bilinear: what GPUs generally do, cheap performance-wise
# bicubic: higher quality, more expensive performance-wise
scalingType bilinear

# Emulate exact flipping behaviour
# requires some extra performance/memory,
# but may be important for some games to work
emulateFlipBehaviour false

# For games which use strange methods to query resolutions,
# injecting a new one might not work. In such cases, you can try replacing an
# existing resolution. E.g. "overrideWidth 800", "overrideHeight 600" to replace 800x600
# 0 = override disabled
overrideWidth 0
overrideHeight 0

########################################################################################
# Windowing settings

# Hides the mouse cursor, at all times
# options: "true" (= hidden) and "false" (= unchanged)
hideMouseCursor false

# Forces borderless windowed fullscreen mode instead of fullscreen mode
# options: "true" (= force borderless windowed FS) and "false" (= unchanged)
forceBorderlessFullscreen false

########################################################################################
# Image processing settings
# Note: may or may not apply depending on the plugin used

## AA

# AA toggle and quality setting
# 0 = off (best performance, worst IQ)
# 1 = low 
# 2 = medium
# 3 = high
# 4 = ultra (worst performance, best IQ)
aaQuality 0

# AA type
# either "smaa" or "fxaa", depending on your preferences
aaType smaa

## SSAO

# Enable and set the strength of the SSAO effect 
# (all 3 settings have the same performance impact!)
# 0 = off
# 1 = low
# 2 = medium
# 3 = high
ssaoStrength 3

# Set SSAO scale
# 1 = high quality (default)
# 2 = lower quality, lower impact on performance
ssaoScale 1

# Set SSAO Blur type
# gaussian = soft, cheap
# sharp = depth-dependent, more expensive
ssaoBlurType gaussian

## DOF

# Enable Depth of Field
# false = off
# true = on
enableDoF false

# Select the type of DOF effect
# basic = basic pseudo-Bokeh DoF
# bokeh = shaped circular Bokeh DoF - WARNING: high performance impact
dofType bokeh

# Bokeh Depth of Field radius
# default = 1.00
# higher = more blurry (e.g. 1.1)
# lower = less blurry (e.g. 0.9)
# note: small changes make a large difference
dofBaseRadius 1.6

## Post

# Enable Postprocessing
# false = off
# true = on
# For in-depth configuration, look in "assets/post.fx" or "assets/post_asmodean.fx"
enablePostprocessing false

# Postprocessing type
# durante = basic postprocessing adapted from SweetFX (dark, local contrast)
# asmodean = postprocessing by Asmodean (with tone mapping, softer)
# For in-depth configuration, look in "assets/post.fx" or "assets/post_asmodean.fx"
postProcessingType asmodean

## Bloom

# Enable HDR Bloom
# false = off
# true = on
# For in-depth configuration, look in "assets/bloom.fx"
enableBloom true

########################################################################################
# Texture settings

# Dump game textures loaded using d3dx to textures\[gamename]\dump\[hash].tga
# if you enable override at the same time, the overridden texture will be dumped
enableTextureDumping false

# Override game textures loaded using d3dx with those from
# textures\[gamename]\override\[hash].(dds|png), if available
enableTextureOverride false

# Mark textures with their hash (for texture modders)
# WARNING: extremely slow if a game loads many textures
# (if you think a game crashed, it's probably still just loading textures)
enableTextureMarking false

########################################################################################
# Mouse settings
# you may have to play around with these a bit to get mouse input working correctly
# while downsampling in some games

# Modify the mouse position reported by "GetCursorPos" when downsampling
modifyGetCursorPos false

# Modify the mouse position set by "SetCursorPos" when downsampling
modifySetCursorPos false

# Intercept the WindowProc callback of the game and adjust mouse messages when downsampling
interceptWindowProc false

# Adjust the mouse position reported in peeked Windows messages when downsampling
adjustMessagePt false

GEM Settings v1.3.1

   /*-----------------------------------------------------------.   
  /                       Description                           /
  '------------------------------------------------------------/

Game: Win7, Win8 & DX9
GEM version: 1.3
Author: Luciferhawk
Description: Here you can adjust your GEM-Settings.

These are the default settings for GEM 1.3

   /*-----------------------------------------------------------.
  /                      Choose effects                         /
  '-----------------------------------------------------------*/

// Set to 1 for ON or 0 for OFF
#define USE_GEMHD   1 //[0 or 1] GEM : Applies basic GEMShader.
#define USE_GEMHBO  1 //[0 or 1] GEM : Applies HBO like GEMShader.

   /*-----------------------------------------------------------.
  /                  GEM Graphic-Enhancement-Mod settings       /
  '-----------------------------------------------------------*/

// -- GEM HD settings --
#define GQuality 3 //[0 / 1 / 2 / 3 / 4] Adjust GEM Quality (performance hit on 2).
#define SSAO 0 //[0 or 1] Applies SSAO like shadowing effect.
#define GSceneDepth 1.08 //[1.00 to 2.00] Adjust Darkness of Scenery (standard 1.04) Higher -> darker. 
#define GShadowDepth 0.28 //[0.00 to 2.00] Adjust Darkness of Shadows (standard 0.80) Lower -> darker.
#define GSat 0.95 //[0.00 to 1.00] Adjust GEM-Saturation (standard 0.95).
#define GTBright 1.24 //[1.00 to 1.36] Adjust GEM-TextureBrightness (standard 1.26) Lower -> darker.
#define GCBright 0.69 //[0.00 to 2.00] Adjust GEM-Contrast (standard 0.70) Lower -> darker.
#define GBloom 0.00 //[0.00 to 1.00]   Adjust GEM-Bloom effect blended into the final image (standard 0.255).
#define GGrain 0.0 //[0.00 to 1.00] Adjust GEM-Grain amount (standard 0.0335)
#define GColorBoost 1 //[0 or 1] Applies color boost effect.

// -- GEM HBO settings --
#define GHBOShift 2.7 //[0.00 to 5.00] Amount of HBO color shift (standard 2.0).

// -- GEM general settings --
#define GaussStrength 0.0   //[0.00 to 1.00]   Amount of blur effect blended into the final image.

// -- GEM optional settings --
#define GEMBlur 0     //[0.00 or 1.00] Additional blur on the edges when pressing K
#define GBlurPwr 395 //[300 to 600] Additional blur on the edges when pressing K (standard 395).
#define GBlurRad 0.00585 //[0.00 to 1.00] Additional blur radius on the edges when pressing K (standard 0.00585).
#define GBlurFocus 0.5 //[0.00 to 1.00] Additional blur focus position on the y-axis when pressing K (standard 0.5).

#define ExpEffects 1     //[0.00 or 1.00] All new effects like blur & ambiente lightning since GEMv4.2.2
#define gHFlInt 0.35 //[0.00 to 1.00] Additional intensity of horizontal flares (standard 0.35).
#define gHFlThresh 0.40 //[0.00 to 1.00] Threshold what causes horizontal flares (standard 0.40).

// DO NOT UNCOMMENT THOSE LINES;;THEY ARE ACTIVATED ANYWAY
// -- GEM advanced settings -- // only touch these values if you know what you are doing
// key_toggle_GEMBlur = 75 //K
// key_toggle_ExpEffects = 122 //F11 



How to Improve Graphics - For FREE!

Sounds too good to be true, doesn't it? Well, it's not! At least not for me. I'm going to let you in on a little secret or 3 that will vastly improve visuals in game. (at least in my opinion)

This is based on the assumption that:
  1. You are using an HDTV as your monitor
  2. You're connected to your HDTV via HDMI cable. (not DVI)
  3. You are using a Samsung HDTV that has the setting I'm going to refer to
Ok! If you've read those 3 stipulations and they all apply to you then congratulations and keep reading! If not, keep reading anyway... at least one of these tweaks may help you out.

First things first - Make sure you're connected to the proper HDMI slot at the rear of your TV. You want to plugin to the one labeled "DVI". This HDMI input is designed for PC's and will have the least amount of lag. (circled below) 

Using an HDTV as a Monitor
Plug your PC into this HDMI input

Secondly, in the Catalyst Control Center (sorry nVIDIA users, don't know where your equivalent setting is) 
expand "My Digital Flat-Panels" and click "Pixel Format".

Now here is where the magic happens. Select  "RGB 4:4:4 Pixel Fomat PC Standard (Full RGB)" and click apply. You should notice an immediate improvement in color depth and clarity. Your desktop should just "pop" now. 

RGB 4:4:4 Pixel Format PC Standard (Full RGB)
RGB 4:4:4 Pixel Format PC Standard (Full RGB)

Thirdly, access your TV settings. On my TV it's under Menu > Picture > Picture Options > HDMI Black Level

You want to change HDMI Black Level from normal to low. This will get rid of the grey haze in the picture and create really dark shadow in areas where they should be.

With that being said, this may not suit everyone. I personally enjoy it. Colors are much more rich, vibrant... and the darks are DARK. 

Did you try these settings? Did you like it? Was it not for you? Let me know in the comments below!



Sunday, May 11, 2014

Headphones That Actually Stay On


Yurbuds Stay In Your Ears

Finally, a pair of headphones / earbuds that stay in! I've tried several different pair of headphones and they all had the same problem: They refuse to stay in while I'm running.


Sony Clip On HeadphonesPart of the problem is I sweat like a fish so naturally earbuds slip out. I had been using a pair of Sony clip-ons for nearly a decade and they had served me well, up until recently. The cord became faulty which resulted in static and the headphones not playing consistently. While ear phones would stay in place while running, they would slip off while sprinting.






Adidas Sennheiser Ear PhoneMy beautiful wife bought me a pair of Sennheiser Adidas ear buds and while they sounded amazing, they too refused to stay in my ears
while running. I tried each cushion size that came with the ear pieces but they refused to stay in.










A few days later I was at my local Best Buy and picked up a cheap pair of head phones to get me by until I could find a good pair that would stay in. The decision proved to be a waste of money as the right earbud failed after only two uses. Like I said, I sweat like a fish.

Yurbuds Stay In
Desperate for a pair of headphones, I checked the stock at a local Wal Mart on a whim. That's when I found Yurbuds Ironman Focus ear buds. The box claimed they were "guaranteed to never fall out" and that's exactly what I looking for. I decided to give them a gamble and so far they have proved worthy. Sound quality decent and they do in fact stay in your ears as advertised. Time will tell if they hold up to the test as summer is nearly around the corner with temps in the triple digits.