New 03 Cobra Shift Light, Chip, etc

Discussion in 'SVT Tech Forum' started by AmdMAN, May 25, 2006.


  1. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    Well guys it looks like I am keeping the 03 Cobra. I have a few questions of course. Noticed there is a shift light in the console, it never came on, so I did a search. Noticed the only ways to get rid of it is light or chip.

    I pulled the kick panel off tonight (broke a frickin metal clip on the skid plate in the process, I HATE those damn metal clips). It doesn't look like anyone has ever taken it off before, as well as the ECU looks like it has never been touched. Of course I don't really know where to look for a chip but still it didn't look like anyone had ever touched the thing. So I guess any ideas on why this light would not come on? I don't feel like removing the whole console to find out... I just want to know if someone has done mods to this car. Oh and about mods, the airbox has a hole in the side to the left of it... did someone take off a silencer or something? It was easier with new cars, at least you know where crap was when it was new.... I have not inspected a new 03 Cobra so I have no idea what to look for as modded.

    Other and final question has to do with the engine. At around 2k rpms load or no load I hear some noise from the engine, but I don't know if its normal. The car was built in 6/02 so it is earlier than the 11/02 for the heads, but I haven't noticed any head ticking. if I hold it at 2k rpms it just sounds like a light tapping, I don't know if the injectors are working harder at 2k or something I have no idea... it just seems odd... I notice it when I am next to a car at 2k because the sound bounces off the other car and it sounds like a faint fast tapping but goes away at about 2200rpms.

    Anyway any help you guys can provide is appreciated.

    Thanks,
    AmdMAN
  2. Uncle Meat

    Uncle Meat Banned

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    Shift light from the factory comes on at around 1850-1900 RPM's. If yours is not then it could be any of the following:

    1. Burned out bulb (unlikely).
    2. Chip on ECM (you stated you didn't see one).
    3. ECM has been flashed. (possibility).

    My custom Predator tune has the shift light coming on at 6200RPM's. Lets hope that's not the case with your car since you never mentioned receiving a handheld tuner when you purchased the vehicle.

    The hole in the passenger side of the airbox is most likely where the snorkel used to be.

    Don't know what to tell you about the noise you hear at 2K. It's most likely not the tick though because the tick is way more audible at idle than when the RPM's are raised. To check for the tick there's a very simple method. Go find a solid concrete or brick wall and pull the drivers side of the car next to it (about 24-36 inches away. Turn off all accessories (A/C, vent van, radio) and roll the passenger window up and the drivers window down. Now listen to the engine at idle... if you have the tick you'll hear it reflecting off the wall and right into the cabin. It will be a very distinct tick-tick-tick-tick, almost like an exhaust leak. Best place to perform this test is in the drive through next time you go to BK, McDonalds, etc.

    U.M.
  3. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    UM thanks for all the help. Yea it's not the head tick so that is good to know. Is there anyway for me to tell if the ECU has been flashed? This shift light thing is small but it is killing me...
  4. Uncle Meat

    Uncle Meat Banned

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    I'm sure there is a way to tell... but I'm not sure as to how to go about it... send a PM to svttech76 and ask him. He works at a dealership, maybe the Ford system they use to update ECM code could tell whether it was still running one of the stock calibrations.

    Have you determined whether the light has been completely disabled, or just changed to a higher RPM point? Maybe the previous owner yanked the bulb? :shrug:

    U.M.
  5. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    All I know is I have never seen it come on and I have taken this baby right up to redline so it hasn't been changed.... I checked the OASIS report yesterday from a very helpful guy on here, and it has never been in for more than a squeak to the dealership and it only has 17k miles so I think whoever had it babied it and didn't drive it at all. It is also my understanding the SC Pulley is 3. something in size? I want to measure that sucker today after work and check to make sure no one put another pulley on it. I know when I step on it the boost gauge flies past 10 but I don't know if that is normal or not. Thanks I might PM him.
  6. Uncle Meat

    Uncle Meat Banned

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    Upper pulley should be 3.65 inches in diameter. Lower crank pulley should be 7.60 inches.

    I'll bet the original owner pulled the bulb out from behind the dash cluster.

    U.M.
  7. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    Possibly... Actually I checked the car a few minutes ago while driving, and I think I do have the head tick... only thing weird is it only happens after the car is warmed up. To get this head taken care of what am I looking for as out of pocket expense? The car's warranty is expired so that is out of the question, but we have a good local SVT Ford dealer around here that I would trust with it. I will measure the pulleys tonight or try to get that dealership to find out about the shift light if I take it to them. I don't really want the shift light on but I would like to know the car hasn't been screwed with. How hard is it to check and see if the bulb has been pulled?

    Thanks
  8. Uncle Meat

    Uncle Meat Banned

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    What makes you think it's the tick? Trust me, you can't hear "The Tick" while driving the car. Opening the hood and listening won't work either because the injectors are too noisy. Besides the brick/concrete wall method listed previously you might be able to hear it by getting down on your hands and knees and sticking your head behind the drivers side front wheel while the engine is idling. The only fix for the tick is to replace the drivers side head with a new one made from the latter castings. Keep in mind that "The Tick" has not been proven to reduce horsepower or be harmful in any way, it's just annoying... I know because I'm on head #3 thanks to "the Tick".

    As for checking the shift light you should be able to just remove the instrument cluster and carefully pull it out far enough to check. Be careful of the line running to the boost gauge, if I remember it has the least amount of slack. Here's a PDF document that outlines the basic procedure...

    http://www.autometer.com/download_instruction/563a.pdf

    U.M.
  9. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    I parked next to an SUV today (like a wall ha). Did what you said. I could hear "tap tap tap _ tap tap _ tap". It was pretty consistent but there were a few times when it blanked out for a minute. I have started the car in the garage before and when it is cold I really don't hear it at all. So that is why I think it has the dreaded "tick". I noticed reading some other people said their stock boost gauge didn't go to 10.. Does yours do it or does it go past 10? If I step on the thing it goes way past 10.. I think I will remove the gauge pod this weekend to find out if the light is missing. I am just curious if whoever had this car before modded the hell out of it or what.. the boost gauge thing makes me wonder now.
  10. Uncle Meat

    Uncle Meat Banned

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    There are many factors that can change the reading reflected by the boost gauge. My boost gauge would hit the "10" mark when my car was bone stock, but that was in the winter when the air was much cooler and more dense. In the hot summertime it would only read 8 or 9 psi.

    Reducing intake airflow restrictions (like adding a CAI) can increase the amount of boost displayed whereas reducing the exhaust flow (adding headers, mid-pipe, cat-back) can reduce the amount of boost displayed.

    Does your car still have the stock exhaust? Most 03/04 owners will replace the cat-back and stock airbox as their first mods because they create the most gains without requiring any supporting mods or additional tuning. Measure those pulleys when you get a chance and see if they are stock diameters as listed above.

    U.M.
  11. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    Haha that was another thing I was going to ask about. I am not sure. The exhaust tips say Borla, but I didn't know what was stock on the 03/04 cobras. I know the silencer is off but thats about all I know. The exhaust sounds unbelievably awesome if it is the stock exhaust...
  12. Uncle Meat

    Uncle Meat Banned

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    The Borla's are definitely NOT STOCK! I wonder what else has been done to your car that you are not aware of.... :scratch:

    U.M.
  13. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    Well I am really wondering as well... Do you know anything else I can look for to tell what else has been done?
  14. Uncle Meat

    Uncle Meat Banned

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    I think I would be measuring those pulleys ASAP!

    U.M.
  15. 3 eyed snake

    3 eyed snake New Member

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    if you are finding after-market parts on it that you didnt know about, it is highly likely that the stock tune isnt there either. my preditor turns my shift light on and off. keep exploring. you might find lots of goodies you dont know about... lol
  16. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    Great My luck this guy probably toasted a piston.... and that is my tick tick tick tick..... Besides the pulleys anthing else to look for? Like I said I don't think that ECU has been touched, the dang kick panel looked like it had never been removed.

    How difficult is it to pull the gauge cluster?
  17. 3 eyed snake

    3 eyed snake New Member

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    you dont pull the kick panel when you use a predator... you plug it in under the stearing wheel on the drivers side. really by your right foot, by your shin... look there is a plug or port.
  18. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    Drum roll please....... Measured the pullies.... Needless to say as I am sure you guessed... they are not stock.

    SC Pulley: it looks a hair under 3in.. could be 2.93 could be 2.8

    Lower Pulley: Looks a hair under 8".

    So I guess this guy probably had this tuned (or at least I hope).

    So far, have exhaust, removed silencer and pullies.... Now I don't know how hard this car has been run and what kind of damage (if any) was done to it. I guess its time to go visit the local dyno and find out the a/f ratio. Is that a good idea U.M.?

    Thanks
  19. AmdMAN

    AmdMAN Founding Member

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    Also guys, I had read on here that without a tuner for the car, you pretty much cannot get the stock tune back or purchase another tuner to tune the car is that correct?
  20. Uncle Meat

    Uncle Meat Banned

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    I'm betting you have a 2.93 or 2.80 upper as you've already mentioned and it sounds like a stock lower. This would explain your boost gauge pegging past 10. Now lets hope your ECM has in deed been flashed for safety's sake! Do not pass go, do not go into boost! Get your ass and your car to the nearest dyno with A/F monitoring capabilities. You need to get that thing checked out ASAP to make sure you're running safe!!!!!!!! You engines life now depends on it.

    U.M.

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