Installing MIMA today :D

Discussion in 'Honda Hybrids' started by Blake, Dec 9, 2007.

  1. Blake

    Blake Well-Known Member

    Yep, I figured I'd give the overall experience in installing MIMA to the people out there in internet land ;)

    Seriously, I have very limited electronics experience, but signifigant mechanical experience... If I can install this thing the first time around with no major mistakes, anyone can. If I hadn't second guessed myself I would be out finishing up the install and working on making the joysticks look professionally installed.

    I'm actually laughing at myself now that I've put everything back somewhat together as there really was no need for all that work. I just needed to learn how to use a volt meter :rolleyes:

    Looks like I'll be doing some research on electrical components and designing them here soon. I tend to get board easily and I need something new to learn :D

    Taking a short break to watch the news and drink some water... I'll head out around 1-1:30ish to finish up the testing and finalizing the install. I want to avoid traffic if at all possible.

    As for driving style, every time I try P&G I end up losing mileage. I'm sure it has to do with experience with the technique, but I really think having control over IMA for the initial hill in my commutes (both ways infact) I'll be doing good. I've got plenty of oportunity to recharge the pack on the flat sections and downhills.

    I'm really looking forward to the first actual driving test.
  2. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Mike:

    ___We know how to achieve 150 + and it is not by using assist. Once on the bottom, you get a forced charge and it would be best to avoid at all costs. Randall and I know how this is done and assist gets in the way.

    ___For steady state, do we really have to go over the results again ;)

    ___Come up with a way to pull assist off in an HCH-I and I would consider adding one to the fleet :)

    ___Good Luck

  3. Mike Dabrowski 2000

    Mike Dabrowski 2000 Well-Known Member

    We have been over this many times, and are unlikely to resolve it in a forum.
    It all gets down to comparing apples and apples. Try to go with the flow on New England roads, without assist, and I will guarantee that a skilled MIMA driver will beat you every time.

    You tend to leave out the going with the flow aspect of safe driving.

    Its fine driving slow when on the road alone.
    Sure you can get 150 MPG when you drive at bycycle speeds or even get out and push like some guys did at the Hybridfest MPG challange. No need for assist there.

    Try it at 55-65 MPH on the highway, and now we are talking about apples and oranges, and cannot fairly compare the two.
  4. Blake

    Blake Well-Known Member

    On a side note, I'd say the hardest... well not really hardest, just most annoying part of the install was on the ECU side. Its a pretty awkward area to work in and putting the FAS module the pins were very close together and trying to get them all in without straining any wires took the "longest" amount of my time.
  5. shifty35

    shifty35 Well-Known Member

    As I mentioned earlier, it really is a simple task for someone with access to the car...
  6. Mike Dabrowski 2000

    Mike Dabrowski 2000 Well-Known Member

    I believe that you will find that the HCH uses a completely different system of control between the ECM and the MCM. The control is serial, not PWM based.
    If you can sort out which serial command(s) do the actual regen and assist control, then you need to simulate them, intercept and block only the related stock commands, add the simulated serial commands, with proper CAN protocol and check sums, in a way that will not set any IMA codes. Not a simple task.
    Good luck though, as many HCH owners would like that feature.
    It is possible that the Scanguage people could incorporate it into their device, since they have already cracked the CAN bus communication?
    Blake, Sorry to have hijacked your thread.
  7. Blake

    Blake Well-Known Member

    No no, Mike, its ok :)

    I'm just glad there is a place where people can talk about MIMA without threads being locked or deleted.
  8. Blake

    Blake Well-Known Member


    Just got the MIMA disconnect switch installed and everything is hooked up. Getting ready to go out for the first drive with MIMA. I'll report back in a few minutes with my initial impression.
  9. Right Lane Cruiser

    Right Lane Cruiser Penguin of Notagascar

    Good news! I'm eager to hear your results. :D

    Don't forget to try P&G without any assist... ;)
  10. Blake

    Blake Well-Known Member

    I'm willing to try anything at least once or twice... well almost anything ;)

    I'm sure I'll have many days of playing around with it before I find what works best for me, but I'm almost positive on the drive to work, using MIMA to give more assist when the engine is cold up that first giant hill will net me at lest 15 more MPG's going to work. I've got 3 miles to recoup that battery drain.
  11. Blake

    Blake Well-Known Member

    Well just got to my parents house, which is what I usually judge mileage on since its decently long (11 miles) and relatively flat.

    Pulled up into the drive way and of course the iFCD was pegged at 150 :D ;) :Banane44:

    Had to switch over to metric to get a consumption rate.. 1.4L/KM

    Or... 168 mpg. :Banane10:

    Of course I totally cheated by using MIMA and now I have ~1/2 of a battery charge left when I'm normally full, but I wanted to see that iFCE pegged at least once.

    I think I've still got some issues with my wiring harness that were not detected in the MIMA testing (Since its not directly MIMA related). The weird sound is still there and I can't get the FAS working, which tells me there's something wrong with what I did on the ECU side. Looks like I'll be working on that Wednesday.

    All in all, I'm pretty impressed with the control of the system. Pulling up to lights that were red I could make the car regen MUCH more than it normally does. Wow, this thing stops quick in full regen mode.
  12. shifty35

    shifty35 Well-Known Member


    The factory IMA is usually used to smooth out the little 3-cyl - maybe it's not doing this correctly anymore and that makes it sound funny?

    My $.02.

    Oh, and to respond to Mike's comment...

    Not having ever looked at or played with a HCH, I'd imagine all you have to do is hijack the packets going to the MCM and modify data values. If it is a CANbus connection, you would just look for packets addressed to the MCM and modify the values. I'm not trying to trivialize the problem, but for someone with the know-how, I'm sure it CAN be done without a whole lot of effort.

    That being said, if someone does take some time to unlock the code, I'd bet the current MIMA hardware would work fine, it would just be a software adjustment.

    I may buy an HCH in the next year or so for my wife, and I'd be glad to head up that project... time to put my EE degree to work.
  13. mparrish

    mparrish Rosie the Riveter Redux


    Although I do not have an insight, don't have any experience with MIMA, and am jealous of Insight mileage, let me just say that I'm immensely enjoying this thread. :)

    Congratulations! HybridFest MPG Challenge is a calling......... :)
  14. Harold

    Harold Well-Known Member

    I'm sure you will find the bugs! Have fun, H
  15. Blake

    Blake Well-Known Member

    Hahaha, Well I can chalk up the "Bugs" to user error... again :eek:

    Turns out I forgot to connect one of the ribbon cables that is used to control the FAS and the secondary fan activation switches.

    After a nice conversation with Mike and him trying to help me find the issue he asked me to make sure I had connected the cable. DOH! I disconnected everything when I ran into "issues" the first time and I forgot to reconnect it.

    I also had a question about the blinking light in mode 1 and was wondering if I had done something wrong.. turns out mike programmed it that way so you couldn't input regen at idle and
    So far the only problems I've run into with the install have been on my end (electronics newbie ;) )

    I'd like to take this time to point out something very important. Mike has been great! He has answered his phone on the several times I've called with questions and has stopped what he was doing to help me out. If anything I'd say his customer service is the best I've ever seen. If any of you have any plans or desires to install MIMA, you definitely will not be disappointed with the help you will get from him.
  16. Mike Dabrowski 2000

    Mike Dabrowski 2000 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for that Blake,
    I ran a TV repair business for 10 years, and did field service for an international company for 10 more, then I was the technical director for a small medical equipment company for 4 more. Customer service is the key to a successful business, and has always been one of my pet peeves with many of the companies of today. As the many other people that have called me will attest. I am always ready to discuss and help with anything that I can.

    I suspect that you will continue to tweak your driving technique for months like the other guys. Give it a few weeks, trying out all of the techniques, including the no assist/regen one suggested by Wayne and others, and lets see what you find.

    Another Insight owner with the MIMA grin:D life is good
  17. Blake

    Blake Well-Known Member

    As much as I don't want to fall into the video game part of this... I AM very competitive. I always have been and most likely always will be. I never stop something until I've mastered it, and this will be no different. MIMA is just another tool in my tool box (albet a VERY useful one ;) ) that will get me my goal. With my extremely short commutes, I need everything I can get to max out my FE... I just refuse to drive 20 mph on a 45 mph road to achive those goals.

    I'm about to head back out and go home... The looming recharge is going to be intresting. I wonder how bad a hit I will take or if I can use MIMA to recharge when its most benificial to me ;)
  18. Waynetc

    Waynetc The North Coast Hypermile

    Blake - thanks for the thread! - I may be the last one to install this batch of Mima's (#58k)in my 00 cy Insight. Just waiting for two days on a weekend above freeeezing!

    Snow tires are on and the mpg drop has not been too bad. You and I are close in avg mpg - so it will be interesting to see the graph climb for both of us in the months ahead.

    On my daily commute I FAS on one hill for over 4 miles. I keep thinking I may be using FAS less and getting the juice box refilled more often once I'm done with the mimafication.

    So having said all this - if anyone wants to lend a hand or observe the install, I can wait., let me know... I'd like to be done by the end of the year. Remember - this isn't Florida ;)

    I also want to second what a great guy Mike is. He spent a lot of time with me on the phone before I bought the whole shabang and turned my finished board around in one day. Now it's up to me to get away from the rest of the stuff and get into the Key Lime Pi. Mike - I'm sure we'll be yappin again

    One question though - Just got notice for a recall on the ecm - freebee replacement - no engine check light, but I'm thinking that I may do that 1st. I'll try to persuade the Honda dealer to let me keep the original. Would the rest of you go the same route? Looks like a driver on IC took the car in with Mima and Honda still did the replacement with no questions asked, but was fascinated....

  19. Blake

    Blake Well-Known Member

    Installing the tubes took all of 3 minutes total for both. They just easily slid in. Once I figured out the unlocking technique on the first pin... the rest came out super easy. The hardest part of the install was the ECU connections for the FAS and MIMA harness. The pins are all so close together that I was struggling to get the pins out without stressing the other wires. Take the time to fully pull the black wrapping back away from the wires and try to spread the wires out decently well BEFORE you start trying to get them out. Trust me it will make it MUCH easier!
  20. Waynetc

    Waynetc The North Coast Hypermile

    thanks Blake - That would be the reason I bought the BIG flexible clip-on magnifier at the local crafts store :Banane49:

    maybe some snow boards to strap on the back when a lake effect snow storm hits...

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