Moates / TwEECer / MicroSquirt? Which one should I look into?


something stupid will fall out of my mouth
Founding Member
Jul 21, 2000
Tulsa, OK
Been fighting with little issues after making a lot of changes to my car at once. I have a pretty long thread going in one of the other forums about it. Wondering if I can do my own tuning and save myself some future headaches. Long story short I built a new engine for my car which was previously stock. Fresh 302 with upgraded heads, cam, intake, TB, MAF (24# injectors), new 255gph Fuel pump with new regulator, EGR delete, most all smog deleted really and have been fighting with idle issues and it just feels flat. Idle wants to hang and having trouble even getting it to idle under 1000rpm and seems like every change i make sets me back more with the stock computer. I work in IT and technology does not scare me but I have been reluctant over the years to jump on the cars+computers bandwagon. I love the somplicity of carburators. However I think its time to take control of this thing.

I am seeing that there are several options out there for self tuning and to be honest a lot of the threads I am finding about this are many years old and technology changes very fast so looking for some current information on these. I dont want to go with the Megasquirt time system that has a full on computer install. I think the three i am seeing all allow tuning my A9L. I am looking for a budget minded setup but I also want to make sure its going to work for me and that I am not right back in the same boat I am in now spending more time fighting with little issues and less time driving my car.
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Because from looking at it I thought it was a plug in type system and not a whole computer. If its not then that one is probably out. The pictures of it on their website appear to plug inline with the stock computer but I wasnt sure.
nope you simply unplug the stock ecu and plug the MS in its place.

your going to find alot more info on chipping the stock ecu on

when your done with fighting the stock ecu and its limited capabilities I can help you get setup with an MS system.
Still a little confused on the MicroSquirt vs MegaSquirt then. The Mega looks like a complete computer similar to the factory and the micro is a smaller black box that look more like a piggy back device. If its a full ECU then I dont want to mess with that. Still looking for someone that has used modern stuff to tell me some pros and cons. I may go look at that other forum but for now I am sure someone on this one with specific mustang experiences.
The modern stuff that is out there are all standalone ECU's like the Megasquirt/Microsquirt, Holley, AEM, Haltech, etc. To clarify the Microsquirt is a mini package of the Megasquirt, so they are essentially from the same ECU family.

Most of us on here are MS fans, and prefer to use it over adding a SCT or Moates chip to the stock computer. These computers are getting quite old, and many of us have had issues with the capacitors and other components going bad. There is also a larger ability of feature and functions with a standalone as well.

There is also a larger market of products that you use with a standalone as well like Digital Dash, Boost Control, Electric Fan Control, etc.

I do hope this helps
Much better information, Thank you. Just a little worried about going full on computer replacement and compounding my problems. The car was running great before i changed everything under the hood but I do understand that capacitors get old and I may look into having someone do the work on that and I am not looking to build a race car out of this. Just a weekend cruiser with some grunt. Mainly I just want to take control over the idle, timing and a few things that I currently have no control over and the price of the Moates and Tweecer look very enticing.

I was reading on the MS and it sounds like it has quite a learning curve to get the car going. How bad is it to get set up? Keep in mind I will never go digital dash or power adder on this car. Just want it it to run right.
I highly suggest you purchase something ms3 based.
This is a much more capable unit, you will need to also purchase a wb controller. I suggest a spartan2 from
How close is that unit to firing up the car once its plugged in? Says it comes with a base tune so I assume it would at least fire the car and allow you to start working with it. How is the software? Pretty easy to navigate or do you need an engineering degree?
very simple to use, you will want the paid version of the software.
TunerStudio is the software you will be using, the lite version is free and I suggest you download it and take a look around.

I also suggest that you pop into my Megasquirt tech and help threads and watch some of my videos, all available in my signature.
That is still a lot more cash outlay to get started than the two piggy back modules so if I do anything like that it will be a little ways down the road. I will have to keep plugging away at my A9L for now.
For such a simple combo, there really isn’t going to be a substantial advantage to anything more than a quarterhorse chip. As long as you feel like you have a stock computer in decent shape as far as the caps and tracers, just go with a quarterhorse/binary editor package. I’d be happy to show you the ropes and get a base tune over to you. Free of charge. Just offering help to the community. Shoot me a message with your phone number and I’ll give you a call to discuss some options. Happy to help.
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Weighing my options right now. I am leaning towards replacing the whole computer with one of the bigger systems only because of its age, but I still may pull it, inspect it and put a piggy back module on it due to cost. Have to save up some money either way.
I once considered all of these options as well. I was going to try a chip but the cost of that is not that much cheaper than the microsquirt from efisource or whatever the company name is (like $479?). You will need a wideband and have to do very little wiring. The ecu is already wired for you so you can just plug it into the stock connector. A couple wires for the wideband, a ground and maybe 2 more wires. There are plenty of videos online of how to install, setup, and tune. My car cranked right up with the base tune provided. Now I DID have prior knowledge with the platform because I ran a ms1 on my turbo Miata. You want want to also check out HP Academy. They recently had a beginners tuning course for $1, regular like $99. Is it going to teach you how to tune? No, but it will introduce you to some important concepts and terminology.

All in all, it just seems like a waste to go the chip route when you can do so much more for not much more moneY with a stand-alone like Megasquirt or a microsquirt

The Megasquirt family of ECU's has been around for almost 20 years. The major difference is the microprocessor/microcontroller. Later ones have more power & features which you may or may not need. The inventors/licensors are Bruce Bowling & Al Grippo (B&G). The design is a lot like "open source" software, but B&G maintain control & even provide some hardware to other companies who design the interface hardware to various vehicles.
The user interface (UI) is Tuner Studio, owned & licensed for use by EFI Analytics. MegaLog Viewer is their data capture & analysis software.

It's a complicated structure, so don't expect to grasp it all at once. Microsquirt & Microsquirt Module are a subset of the Megasquirt family.

The MSPNP is assembled by DIY Autotune using a Microsquirt Module as the heart of the ECU.

Compare Binary Editor (BE) for the EEC-IV with Tuner Studio for the Megasquirt & decide which UI you prefer to use.
IMHO, the UI is the strongest reason to choose the Megasquirt.
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