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Review - Shuenk TSI K03+ Turbo - Dyno

Thumper

Autocross Champion
So why is it that some people say that DSG tunes are required for more than stock torque? APR (who my current tune is through) a few years back made some forum posts involving the point that the ECU being able to tell the TCU that it is not actually under a torque overload condition - will affect how the DSG reacts to a large amount of torque. I am just trying to solve some major headscratching going on right now lol because even though I haven't had any problems with my particular tranny, trying to figure out what supporting mods I will need for ethanol is a nightmare lol

Same reason everyone says Stg 2 Instantly kills MT clutches, because it's fun to say stuff. lol

Very little in the mod world is "required" until you get into bigger turbos as long as you are clear with goals and expectations.

Step one here is to gather all information, there is more to the TCU tune than "holding torque".

Features:​

  • Optimized part throttle drive and sport maps
  • Optimized wide open throttle drive and sport maps
  • Increased clutch torque limits
  • Manual downshift lockout limit increased
  • Lightning fast paddle response
  • Lightning fast shift times and AMAX mode
  • Reduced pull-away delay
  • Customizable auto up-shift behavior
  • Customizable auto down-shift behavior
  • Customizable 3-step launch control
  • Lightning fast launch control
  • Launch counter
  • Temperature management optimized
  • Gear display active in drive and sport
  • Direct Port Programming - Clean and easy install through the OBD II port without removing the ECU
  • Free Updates - Get free updates for life
  • Guarantee - 30 day money back guarantee

Even though the last 3 are not really "features", I left them in there for completness, that's quite a list of things included in the TCU tune. Do you care about any of them? For sure they are all pretty nice features and upgrades and totally worth it well outside the "holding torque" issue but it's your car and if you shrug and say don't need them then we can focus on JUST torque holding.

I had an over-torque situation on my TTRS a little while after getting Stg1. It's a completely different platform so no direct comparison other than similar underlaying equipment (DSGs are different but still DSGs). It only happened to cars at altitude (I lived near Denver at the time) with one exception and only really on the E85 tune. If it happened the car basically went into limp mode with DRIVETRAIN ERROR screaming at you in the cluster. lol Turn the car off and back on and all was good again. APR was able to tweak the ECU tune and after an update the issue never replicated again, I did not have the TCU tune at this time. Obviously the systems communicate as they have to and "over torque" can be avoided without a TCU tune. I have since gotten the TCU tune and while more subtle than the stock to Stg1 ECU difference, drivability behavior is noticeably improved in shifts.

The question is, how does it avoid it. Well, it certainly retards/controls power output so as to not exceed the factory torque limits. This means you are likely not getting 100% of your tune performance. These torque limits are programed by the factory with warranty and longevity in mind and are well below the tested maximums. Keep that in mind of course lol sooner services are a good idea and earlier clutch pack replacements are likely if exceeding stock power. The secondary factor is for safety some clutch slip is allowed to save the drivetrain, the engineers would rather the clutch pack slip at a certain peak of torque over designed thresholds to avoid damaging the rest. Time for my flame proof Underoos; (Batman style even though Affleck killed the franchise, again) just like with traditional manual transmissions clutch slip is bad long term and will wear out the packs. Obviously spinning a friction disc even a wet one against another material will damage the friction material, with the added fun of debris now in the fluid.

The TCU tune not only lifts the programmed toque limits to avoid the over-torque, doing this means the clamp pressures of the packs is increased to HOLD that pressure instead of slipping the discs. Now you are not causing increased wear to your clutch packs and dumping debris into the fluid from slipping them. There's still increased wear over stock to other components from the higher torque but the wear to the clutches is just sped up normal wear (sort of as it were), not burning and debris from them slipping constantly.

Is a TCU tune REQUIRED? No, you can and many people do just tune the ECU and go on their way. Will you have the same drivability and performance without one? No.

At the end of the day, it's $400 which is a heck of a lot cheaper than a MT clutch upgrade and comes with loads of drivability features in addition to allowing the maximum potential of the tune. Heck it's cheaper than most INTAKES which do far less yet those are on everyone's cars. LMAO
 

yee_ti

New member
Same reason everyone says Stg 2 Instantly kills MT clutches, because it's fun to say stuff. lol

Very little in the mod world is "required" until you get into bigger turbos as long as you are clear with goals and expectations.

Step one here is to gather all information, there is more to the TCU tune than "holding torque".

Features:​

  • Optimized part throttle drive and sport maps
  • Optimized wide open throttle drive and sport maps
  • Increased clutch torque limits
  • Manual downshift lockout limit increased
  • Lightning fast paddle response
  • Lightning fast shift times and AMAX mode
  • Reduced pull-away delay
  • Customizable auto up-shift behavior
  • Customizable auto down-shift behavior
  • Customizable 3-step launch control
  • Lightning fast launch control
  • Launch counter
  • Temperature management optimized
  • Gear display active in drive and sport
  • Direct Port Programming - Clean and easy install through the OBD II port without removing the ECU
  • Free Updates - Get free updates for life
  • Guarantee - 30 day money back guarantee

Even though the last 3 are not really "features", I left them in there for completness, that's quite a list of things included in the TCU tune. Do you care about any of them? For sure they are all pretty nice features and upgrades and totally worth it well outside the "holding torque" issue but it's your car and if you shrug and say don't need them then we can focus on JUST torque holding.

I had an over-torque situation on my TTRS a little while after getting Stg1. It's a completely different platform so no direct comparison other than similar underlaying equipment (DSGs are different but still DSGs). It only happened to cars at altitude (I lived near Denver at the time) with one exception and only really on the E85 tune. If it happened the car basically went into limp mode with DRIVETRAIN ERROR screaming at you in the cluster. lol Turn the car off and back on and all was good again. APR was able to tweak the ECU tune and after an update the issue never replicated again, I did not have the TCU tune at this time. Obviously the systems communicate as they have to and "over torque" can be avoided without a TCU tune. I have since gotten the TCU tune and while more subtle than the stock to Stg1 ECU difference, drivability behavior is noticeably improved in shifts.

The question is, how does it avoid it. Well, it certainly retards/controls power output so as to not exceed the factory torque limits. This means you are likely not getting 100% of your tune performance. These torque limits are programed by the factory with warranty and longevity in mind and are well below the tested maximums. Keep that in mind of course lol sooner services are a good idea and earlier clutch pack replacements are likely if exceeding stock power. The secondary factor is for safety some clutch slip is allowed to save the drivetrain, the engineers would rather the clutch pack slip at a certain peak of torque over designed thresholds to avoid damaging the rest. Time for my flame proof Underoos; (Batman style even though Affleck killed the franchise, again) just like with traditional manual transmissions clutch slip is bad long term and will wear out the packs. Obviously spinning a friction disc even a wet one against another material will damage the friction material, with the added fun of debris now in the fluid.

The TCU tune not only lifts the programmed toque limits to avoid the over-torque, doing this means the clamp pressures of the packs is increased to HOLD that pressure instead of slipping the discs. Now you are not causing increased wear to your clutch packs and dumping debris into the fluid from slipping them. There's still increased wear over stock to other components from the higher torque but the wear to the clutches is just sped up normal wear (sort of as it were), not burning and debris from them slipping constantly.

Is a TCU tune REQUIRED? No, you can and many people do just tune the ECU and go on their way. Will you have the same drivability and performance without one? No.

At the end of the day, it's $400 which is a heck of a lot cheaper than a MT clutch upgrade and comes with loads of drivability features in addition to allowing the maximum potential of the tune. Heck it's cheaper than most INTAKES which do far less yet those are on everyone's cars. LMAO
can someone sticky this in one of the main modification threads LMAOOO

I appreciate that response, Puts together a lot of different pieces of information I had and makes them make sense.

On another note, I had my DSG fluid changed 12k miles ago because my coil packs were failing and somehow causing the DSG to slip at high torque load and disengage the clutch (I replaced the coil packs and has never happened again, strange that it can cause that hahaha) and there was no material in the fluid at all according to the dealership. So clutches are still in great shape so far!

Sounds like for the simple fact of changing how the DSG wears itself down in a controlled manner rather than being uncertain of its fate is where the money is at here, when im looking at ethanol solutions soon. Thanks for the detailed response!
 

butthead123

New member
Here is the dyno with the IE K04 tune. The turbo runs great on both software you get more low end punch with the IE stg 2 but the pull on the K04 software is impressive for a small body turbo. But it has its limit like the top end drops off after 6000 due to maxing out its capabilities
First off, thank you for sharing quality data and for your progressive review. Getting 330whp on an AWD mustang heartbreaker dyno is even more impressive which I believe tends to read lower than other dynos. This output puts this right up there with dyno readings with cars running actual k04 turbos. In your opinion, does a borgwarner k04 actually offer more or on par with a shuenk k03+?

Second question. I have an aftermarket turbo outlet pipe at the moment on a stock ihi turbo. Can it still be carried over to be used with a shuenk k03+?

Thanks!
 

MrFancypants

Autocross Champion
Question about this turbo to anyone who might know....

At roughly what horsepower level is this turbo at its most efficient? I ask because I have a certain specific horsepower output I'd like to be at without pushing my turbo to blow hot air into the intercooler.
 

WalkerT

Go Kart Newbie
First off, thank you for sharing quality data and for your progressive review. Getting 330whp on an AWD mustang heartbreaker dyno is even more impressive which I believe tends to read lower than other dynos. This output puts this right up there with dyno readings with cars running actual k04 turbos. In your opinion, does a borgwarner k04 actually offer more or on par with a shuenk k03+?

Second question. I have an aftermarket turbo outlet pipe at the moment on a stock ihi turbo. Can it still be carried over to be used with a shuenk k03+?

Thanks!
The k03+ is about to hit close to the k04 numbers but a bw k04 can carry that number for more of the rpm range. So the k04 can offer more power higher in the rpm.
 

WalkerT

Go Kart Newbie
Question about this turbo to anyone who might know....

At roughly what horsepower level is this turbo at its most efficient? I ask because I have a certain specific horsepower output I'd like to be at without pushing my turbo to blow hot air into the intercooler.
This one is running under efficiency on stg2 but the k04 tune pushes just outside. So right at the 290whp is the sweet spot for this one.
The k03+ running on an aggressive stg2 is perfect because you benefit from lower egt and longevity.
 

butthead123

New member
The k03+ is about to hit close to the k04 numbers but a bw k04 can carry that number for more of the rpm range. So the k04 can offer more power higher in the rpm.
Thanks. I may have missed it but how does the n75 numbers look with the k03+ running the IE k04 tune?
 

MrFancypants

Autocross Champion
This one is running under efficiency on stg2 but the k04 tune pushes just outside. So right at the 290whp is the sweet spot for this one.
The k03+ running on an aggressive stg2 is perfect because you benefit from lower egt and longevity.
Perfect, thank you.
 

WalkerT

Go Kart Newbie

WalkerT

Go Kart Newbie
Thats an important metric, i appreciate that walker. With that information, seems like on an e30 blend, 320whp is the sweet spot for this turbo?
As long as you have a tune to utilize the e30 then yes. On pump gas I would say like I did above.
 

yee_ti

New member
I would like to share a quick update, stock airbox is a no-go on this turbo. After the ECU has learned the wastegate behavior with the APR tune, its consistently hitting 22psi of boost (which is the max the ecu can request on stock turbo tunes due to the map sensor), however in the mid range when the power comes on and the turbo's added airflow really starts coming in, it comes on strong and then chokes on the airbox at about 4k rpm until the boost tapers to 14 or so psi around 5000-5500rpm

Stock airbox is fine on the stock turbo and works great on stage 2 with a thinner panel filter, but it seems like the limitations are there now with the increased airflow in the mid range. Neuspeed P-Flo is on the way now.

Side note, the turbo flutters sound great on this turbo with my blowoff valve setup, i have been wasting all my gas on the way to and back from work just listening to the choochoochoo lmao
 

eherma

New member
How are the Shuenks holding up? I am really looking forward to going with their k04+ within the next few months.
 

yee_ti

New member
How are the Shuenks holding up? I am really looking forward to going with their k04+ within the next few months.
Mine has been solid, i beat the piss out of my car, and its been running strong. Developed a kind of whiny sound like when K03s start to go bad, but its on the opposite side of the engine bay so im 99% sure it has something to do with my pod filter, not the turbo. WalkerT did some borescoping after multiple power runs on a dyno and a ton of street time and said the turbo looked good to go as a quality part. If you take a look at the top of the thread youll see them
 
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