In the beginning, man created the car… and it wasn’t long before men sought out to modify the car. Once man started modifying car, he needed tuning. Thus, he began a lifetime of checking spark plugs for a rich or lean condition. In 2008, checking spark plugs is so OUT, and wide bands are SO in. One of the newest units in the game is the new Dynojet Wide Band 2. We installed one on our Project Chevrolet Trailblazer SS and gave it a full thrash so you could learn everything you needed about this tool.
Dynojet’s Wide Band 2 is an evolution of their first meter, the Dynojet Wide Band Commander. The Wide Band Commander was a good air/fuel meter, but it was getting a little long in the tooth in some ways compared to the newer units coming on to the market. As such, Dynojet began development of a new unit – code named Wb2. That is what became, simply – the Dynojet Wide Band 2. You can check out the website for WB2 here.
We did a complete article and a video on the Wide Band 2, and this is the article. You can also watch the complete video of the installation below.
Air Fuel Ratio Meters – The Basics
Before we go into the Dynojet Wide Band 2 too much, we want to review the basics of what a wide band air fuel meter is. A Wide Band Air Fuel ratio meter measures the air/fuel ratio of your engine with a fairly quick response time and a minimum of lag. It’s not real time, but the response time is good enough to give you a very real world “moving” snap shot of whether your engine is rich or lean. The word ‘wide band’ comes from the range of the oxygen sensor, as compared to the term ‘narrow’ band. The difference between a wide band 02 sensor and a narrow band 02 sensor is the accuracy in which it can measure a range of air/fuel ratios.
In the beginning, Auto Meter made the first actually popular air/fuel gauge which used a narrow band oxygen sensor and had some really cool flashing rich/lean lights. While it was cool for the time — it was very limited due to the accuracy of the narrow band sensor. As such, reading spark plugs visually, or using EGT (exhaust gas temp sensors) was the only way to really figure out whether you had the optimum air fuel ratio for maximum power and engine safety.
Today – with the advent of relatively inexpensive and very accurate Wide Band oxygen sensors – there are many different performance companies that make actual Wide Band-style Air Fuel Ratio meters. And one of those companies was Dynojet, a pioneer with the original Dynojet Wide Band Commander. The Wide Band Commander allowed you as the driver to keep tabs on your air/fuel ratio while driving, helping you tune for maximum power, and also hooked up to a PC for logging. However powerful, the Dynojet Wide Band Commander had a good, but limited set of features. The real innovation was the ability to measure with a cockpit-mounted A/F meter and display. Key features did include integrated memory for some data logging (could be downloaded), a one-wire RPM & TPS hook-up, and the ability for the unit to power a warning light.
Dynojet knew they wanted to keep up with the competition, and the Dynojet Wide Band 2 was born to be one of the new meters on the market. As enthusiasts have accepted Wide band meters as a regular part of their parts list, it was time for Dynojet to make a new version of the meter with all of the features they were requesting.
“The Dynojet Wide Band Commander was a good unit, and it still does a lot of what today’s enthusiasts want in terms of measuring their air fuel ratio,” explained Dan Hourigan of Dynojet. “The thing was, we knew enthusiasts wanted more features, and a more powerful handheld display option. The Wide Band 2 was born because we knew we had the technology to build a much better system and keep the price reasonable. The new meter is really trick.”
The Dynojet Wide Band 2
The New Dynojet Wide Band is upgraded in almost every area over the original Commander. Not only does it have a smaller package size and an array of display options, but Dynojet claims a faster reaction time from it’s included Bosch LSU 4.2 Wide Band Oxygen Sensor.
The kit starts with the WB2 Module, which is in essence the “brains” of the Air Fuel Meter control. The module is much smaller the first generation Dynojet Wide Band Commander, features a faster response, and a more powerful set of core features. Dynojet feels however that the improvements in the system are widespread.
“One of the biggest improvements is the ease of installation,” explained Carl Chastain of Dynojet. “We only require a one wire RPM hookup, and our WB2 has a built in sensor condition test.” In addition, this system has the option to do data logging and you can hook up any five-volt analog input sure as TPS, MAF, Boost, or any other analog input. “It will also control the output of a simulated narrow band to your computer to it doesn’t go nuts, said Chastain. “Everything can be monitored by an analog or digital gauge. The optional LCD screen adds the ease of touch screen to control the WB2 and all of its functions right from the driver seat.”
When pressed about what his favorite upgrade over the first gen Wide band was, Chastain noted that the ability to integrate with an external tuning devices. “The fact that you can log your air fuel data into your tuner, I think that is going to give a very powerful tool to the aftermarket ECU programmers. Especially those that can log data.”
Wide Band 2 Base Technical Features:
- 0-5v Calibrated Analog AFR Output (Connects to external data acquisition device)
- One wire RPM hookup
- 0-5v analog input (TPS, MAF, boost, etc…)
- Built-in Sensor Condition Test
- Durable enclosure and wire sheathing for years of trouble-free operation
- Dynojet CAN-Link communication , allows for expansion options
The Base Kit includes the smaller Wide Band module, a Bosch LSU 4.2 Wide Band Oxygen Sensor, and all of the necessary wiring, sensors, and cables. The unit is very compact, it’s total dimensions are 2.80″w x .56″h x 1.488″d. In order to download or view the data, you’ll need to add an aftermarket gauge, or download the data into your laptop using the included cable.
The real fancy stuff comes with the upgraded kits, of which Dynojet offers several. The first upgraded kit includes a gauge, of which there are four for in-cockpit viewing:
• White Analog Gauge, 52mm (2 1/16”)
• Black Analog Gauge, 52mm (2 1/16”)
• White Digital Gauge, 52mm (2 1/16”)
• Black Digital Gauge, 52mm (2 1/16”)
The most serious kit, and the one that we are installing on our Traiblazer SS, is the one with the Full LCD Touchscreen display seen here. The touchscreen not only displays the active air/fuel ratio on the full-color unit, but it allows you fully configure the system right there through the display. The display can be configured to show different inputs, but the default shows the RPM, Lamba, and Air Fuel, but it can also display things like MAF voltage, Throttle Position, etc.
— The full-color touch screen LCD display adds some serious sizzle to your interior.
Installation on our Trailblazer SS was simple and straight forward. We are going to walk you through some of the installation steps, which may vary slightly based on your specific application. Our Trailblazer SS is equipped with Kooks Headers, Corsa cat-back exhaust, and an HP Tuners custom tune up by Doug Stalter. With the Dynojet WB2, we’ll be able to keep an eye on the air/fuel ratio as we make further modifications including a camshaft and CNC-ported cylinder heads.
Mounting the Bung — The first thing we needed to do was mount the new Dynojet Bosch wide band O2 sensor in the Corsa exhaust of our Trailblazer. We simply removed the Crossover pipe on the TBSS and welded in the supplied Dynojet bung. To do so, find a suitable location to mount the sensor on your exhaust. If your vehicle has a catalytic converter, Dynojet recommends to mount it before the converter. You want to try and keep the sensor within thirty inches of the exhaust port, and make sure you weld the bung no more than 90-degrees from vertical.
Running the Sensor Wire to WB2 — We then turned our attention to running the wire from the sensor to our Wide Band 2 Module. Using a factory grommet we ran the wire up into the passenger compartment where we decided to mount the module under the driver-side kick panel. We picked this spot so that we could easily get to the module if we ever wanted to change options. If for some reason you wanted to mount the module else where, it is water resistant and can be mounted under the hood as long as you seal the CAN-link Ports. At this point, you should leave the sensor loose in the bung as you will need to remove it for testing later.
Power to the People — With the module and sensor in place, it was time to run power. Using the T-taps that came with our kit, we taped in to a fused key on power source. What that means is the Wide band 2 will only have power when the ignition is turned to the on position. Carl explained that this is the best way to hook this system up because if the vehicle is running, and the sensor isn’t powered up, the gas will damage the sensor. Not wanting to leave things to chance, we listened to him. As I mentioned before, we didn’t tighten down the sensor. This is because we still needed to run the built in Sensor Condition Test.
Testing the Sensor — We started the test by removing the sensor from the bung and letting it hang in clean ambient air. Next, we powered up the Wide Band 2 and let it run for one minute. After a quick break, we merely pressed and held the function button on the module for three seconds until the LED light started flashing. When you are doing this test on your own, this is the part you need to pay attention to. The LED will pause from its flashing and start blinking. Count the number of blinks. If you think you missed one or aren’t sure — just start the test again.
Hooking up TPS & RPM— To take advantage of the Wide Band 2’s analog input feature, we went with the good old throttle position sensor. That way we could monitor the air/fuel ratio in relation to the throttle position. When hooking the WB2 to any analog sensor, it is always best to use the ground at the sensor to get the most accurate reading. The RPM wire was very simple as all we had to do was tap the negative side of the coil using another one of our T-taps that came with our kit.
LCD Touchscreen Setup — We had a choice to install the LCD touchscreen, and a digital or analog gauge. Really, The second the LCD screen was turned on all of our questions were answered. The features seemed endless as Carl showed us one after another. When you go with the LCD screen, you get a number of options to adjust from target air/fuel ratio, to the layout of the display. You can even change the colors — all of this in an easy to navigate touch screen menu. When you add in the data-logging capability, the LCD touchscreen is definitely one of the highlights of the WB2.
Testing the Dynojet WB2
Once we got the wiring completed, we fired up the Trailblazer SS for a full check. All systems go. We felt like Space Shuttle commanders playing around with the touchscreen LCD around the streets. We tried to avoid being killed, since it’s really not smart to be messing with it while driving. Hard to help ourselves though, as the throttle position sensor, air fuel, and rpm inputs were very useful. We then made a run and logged it using the internal data logging function.
We know from previous dyno testing of the Trailblazer on our Dynojet 424x dyno that our air/fuel ratio was tuned to be the 12.8 to 13.1:1 range. We are pleased to say that real-world testing with the Trailblazer SS found our A/F to vary from 12.8 to 13.0 at wide open throttle.
We’ll be doing further testing of the WB2, especially as we add the ported cylinder heads and camshaft to the SS. We give the WB2 a thumbs up and look forward to a long-history of using it.
Wide Band 2 Kit w/ Touchscreen LCD
Part Number: 15-7008
Wide Band 2 Kit w/ White Digital Gauge
Part Number: 15-2007
Wide Band 2 Kit w/ Black Digital Gauge
Part Number: 15-7006
Wide Band 2 Kit w/ White Analog Gauge
Part Number: 15-7005
Wide Band 2 Kit w/ Black Analog Gauge
Part Number: 15-7004
Wide Band Commander 2 – Base Unit
Part Number: 15-7003