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What Scanner do Ya'll have?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by jc71355, Jul 29, 2002.

  1. jc71355

    jc71355 1/2 ton status

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    What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    I need to get a scanner that will tell me more than just error codes. I have a laptop and I would really like one that I could put on that and just plug it in and run with it on. My dad bought one but all it does is flash the light just like I can do with a paper clip. My Gf's dad has one that will tell you rpm, error codes, what gear your in, if the converter is lockedup, closed/open loop, rich/lean, voltage readings.... pretty much everything except fuel pressure. Only problem is he said his cost $1200 /forums/images/icons/shocked.gif and I could buy an engine for that. I looked at Auto X-Ray but I don't think it will give me what I want. I don't mind paying good money for something worth it but 1200 is a little extreme in my opinion. What do ya'll have? How do you like it and what will it do? Anybody running one on a laptop?

    James
     
  2. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    I've got the Auto X-Ray 240, and its not bad. Like 30 seconds of data capture, real time viewing of data, etc.

    I haven't gotten into the software aspect (check out www.winaldl.com) so I'm not sure how and with what ECM's that software works with. Sounds like anymore, with the right ECM and a laptop (with the right cable, which can be $$) you can see more and do more with a laptop than the scanner.

    Then again, I bought my auto x-ray from eBay, and for $140, I got all 3 makers (Dodge, Ford, Chev) link cables, which I've already put to use /forums/images/icons/smile.gif

    If I had a laptop already though, and could verify that winALDL or some other program would work with whatever ECM I was dealing with, I'd go that route. I believe that puts you into a "one vehicle only" setup though, whereas if you can buy an auto x ray with all the cables, you can be the envy of all your friends, and on the receiving end of "can you bring your scanner over" calls. : )
     
  3. jc71355

    jc71355 1/2 ton status

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    So your scanner will tell you live what's going on for 30sec.? Or is this just the amount of data that can be stored? Will it tell you about the tranny and temp and all that fun luvin stuff?
     
  4. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    It will record 30 seconds for later viewing (IIRC thats the time) and you can view live data as long as you like.
     
  5. jc71355

    jc71355 1/2 ton status

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    Is this that software you were talking about? $30 bucks for the cable shipped ain't bad if it works, and the software is freeware /forums/images/icons/grin.gif . I wonder if anyone here has ever used it. Only thing I wish it had was the stuff to watch the tranny. Kinda hard to tell if the converter is locked up or not sometimes /forums/images/icons/wink.gif .
     
  6. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    The cables I was seeing were much more...wonder if I'm missing something.

    Can you get the number for the ECM in your truck?

    I've never driven a vehicle and watched the scanner, and its been awhile since I've used it, but I'm 99% sure it tells you when the ECM commands lockup. Either pin A or F is TCC on the ALDL, so that would mean its something "scannable".
     
  7. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    BTW apparently you have a "747" ECM, which is supported by winALDL. Just because it says its supported though, it still is a "maybe".
     
  8. BurbinOR

    BurbinOR 3/4 ton status

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    I'm with Dorian, have the Auto Xray and love it - does everything you need but if you can get the freeware like Craig Moates FREE software with a cable that can be made or bought, it would be nice, because then you can see ALL parameters at once on your laptop screen, where with an Auto Xray you can only see one at a time as you scroll. Either way, a scanner is a must have for any FI vehicle.

    Go over to www.thirdgen.org and check out the Prom Burning board......lots of info on that and the TPI board.
     
  9. jc71355

    jc71355 1/2 ton status

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    Ok I'm getting confused w/all of this and fixing to give up and buy an X-ray. I was looking at Craig Moates software and it looks like it only works on Tuned Port engines. /forums/images/icons/confused.gif Oh well I know I need something....I'm just getting confused by all these names and letters and numbers and I don't know what they mean or if they will work w/my TBI /forums/images/icons/confused.gif
     
  10. BurbinOR

    BurbinOR 3/4 ton status

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    Understandable. I picked up my Autoxray new for $150............well worth the money. Has solved a few drivability problems that I never would have without it.
     
  11. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    A scanner is by far the most useful tool for the computer system in a vehicle, barring of course the actual software/laptop.

    The only term I can see being an issue that I am throwing out is ALDL, which later on was changed to ALCL I believe, both of which are just the connector for the scanner. Its where you plug it in to "look" at what the ECM (Electronic Control Module) is spitting out.

    The scanner is quite simple to use, (actually extremely easy) but realize you will need to have a service manual or some good friends with one, to interpret and analyze the data you are looking at, such as the millamps the O2 sensor is putting out for example, or TPS voltage, etc.

    I personally think the scnning software/link cable are great if you have made changes to your system, or plan on it, and you need to see what is going on for large amounts of time, or in different "areas" of the ECM, whereas the Auto X ray and the like are perfectly fine for trying to diagnose problems and see whats going on with a stock (as in stock computer/injection system) vehicle.
     
  12. Thunder

    Thunder 3/4 ton status

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    In my opinion the Auto X Ray is the best scanner out there.
    I have one and use it on all my vehicles. It will scan GM Ford Chrysler OBD1. It givs most all the info and operating paramaters needed to diagnose problems it has saved me a lot of money. I recently updated mine to scan OBD 2. All I had to do was buy the cable . When I got the cable it came with a phone number to call and they gave me the coding to unlock the programing al ready loaded in the scanner..
    You can akso get software/ cable for your PC that you can download all the info that the scanner stores and make charts and graphs of your engine's performance.
    The basic scanner for GM OBD 1 is around $130 at most auto parts stores.
    heres their web site for more info:autoxray.com
     
  13. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    I'm using WinALDL that has already been mentioned. Didn't cost me a thing other than about $10 in parts to build the cable. To figure out what it's telling you, get "How to tune and modify Chevrolet fuel injection" (ISBN: 0-7603-0422-x).
     
  14. jc71355

    jc71355 1/2 ton status

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    Are you happy with the features? Any problems that you've found? Where would I get that book you mentioned?
     
  15. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    Re: What Scanner do Ya\'ll have?

    I'm certainly no expert but, I've found nothing to complain about. It works very well from my experience, it would probably work even better if I fully understood everything it tells me. It's all in the book but, it takes a while for it to all "gell" in your mind (at least for me). I did find one small bug with the version I originally down loaded. Didn't even think it was a bug, figured I just didn't understand. Sent an email to the owner/author and he acknowledged the problem within hours of my email and sent me a quick fix to test. Worked fine. Had a new update for download on the wegb about an hour after that.

    As for the book, pretty much anywhere. Larger local book stores should have it (I’ve seen it in the local B&N). Or
    check here for Amazon. Might check FatBrain or others for better prices.
     

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