Introducing Harry AKA Ztuner! (Dyno Day)

Posted: July 9, 2012 in 300ZX Build, Documentary
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Harry Sandhu Ztuner

This week I’d like to introduce Harry Sandhu from the shop Ztuner. Harry is not only a sponsor of the build, but someone who can truly relate to the ideas behind the film – as he’s coincidentally an amputee himself. What are the odds that the car I’m building, and one of its premier tuners/mechanics, is also missing a hand like me? Crazy right?!?

I found Harry through my sponsor Ashspec. Ash asked if I had heard of the shop Ztuner – mentioning that its owner Harry had been “building cars & slingin’ motors” for years, all without the aid of a left hand. Needless to say, I immediately reached out to him.

Harry was excited about the project and got behind not only the build, but also the film itself (agreeing to be a participant in the film)! And since coming aboard, he’s really helped steer my build in the right direction – his wealth of knowledge never ceases to amaze me. (More on Harry’s role with the build in a future update.)

Ztuner is based out of Sarasota, Florida. With me in the Northeast, we’ve only spoken through phone calls and e-mails up to this point. So when Harry called and told me he was flying up to NY for a dyno tuning session put on by the NYZC (New York Z Club) – I knew I had to meet the man in person and film it for the documentary!

Sony V1U Atomos Ninja Flip HD

The day started off early with a 4am text (and subsequent 7am call) from my cameraman backing out of the shoot. Wow… here was my first chance to meet and film with Harry and it was almost over before it even began.

After a few panicked calls trying to arrange a Hail Mary cameraman for the day, on less than three hours notice, I said screw it – I’ll film myself! After all, I’m always blabbing away on here about my desire to learn new things, so here was my chance. So I loaded up the gear and headed out to Queens, NY for the shoot.

T & R Racing Jamaica Queens

If you remember from my “Official Teaser Trailer Launched!” post – we were originally supposed to film at Vinny Ten Racing out on Long Island. Due to a scheduling conflict, the dyno session was moved to T&R Racing in Jamaica, Queens. Because of the short notice, I hadn’t called ahead to secure rights to film at the shop.

So I was a little nervous to say the least. But Kamal (the owner of T&R) was more than happy to accommodate me. For that I am grateful. The shop was filled with rotary RX7’s of all years – and my apologies to you for not getting pictures of that. I was so focused on shooting Harry (and being that I was by myself); I just didn’t have the time. Definitely worth stopping by to check out the shop if you’re in the area.

After some quick introductions – Harry got down to business doing what he does best, tuning cars!

(Full disclosure – I am no tuning expert, nor do I have full knowledge of Harry’s ECU tuning methods. So the following below can be looked at as a colorful description of what happened through my eyes, and is not meant to be a technical step-by-step description. Some parts of the process may have been left out – or not understood completely by me at all.)

DynoJet T&R Racing

Check out the temperature on the DynoJet display – A balmy 95 degrees! It was incredibly hot that day (with a heat-wave blasting the East Coast for days prior).

I watched the temperature climb to almost 97 degrees throughout the day. Not the best conditions to tune some twin turbo cars that’s for sure – but you work with what mother nature gives you.

First up was Ryan’s ultra clean black TT. If I’m honest, I’m not usually a fan of the tri-spoke wheels, but they looked really good on his car.

And when they spin, it’s like there’s no center at all! Really pretty wheels.

Harry Sandhu Ztuner DynoJet

After a baseline run, Harry inspects the DynoJet graph numbers.

Harry Sandhu Ztuner

A quick check of base timing. 

Harry Sandhu Ztuner Nistune

Then it’s time to manipulate the ECU via Nistune.

Harry Sandhu Ztuner DynoJet

Several DynoJet pulls later (and more Nistune ECU manipulation) – Harry and Ryan inspect the final numbers. I know you’re all probably thinking, “But how much power did he make?”

Well… dyno numbers can be as sensitive as a woman’s weight, and I don’t want to step on any toes – so I’ll leave it up to the owners’ discretion to post graphs on their forum of choice if they are so inclined. But the car was no slouch by any means.

Harry Sandhu Ztuner ECU

Between Dyno sessions, Harry took a break to install a dual tune switch in another customer’s ECU.

It was cool watching Harry work – as I see a lot of similarities between the two of us in the way we use our respective arms to work. Harry uses his left arm for everything just as I do my right. We both retain almost all functionality despite being a hand short.

Harry Sandhu Ztuner ECU

Harry Sandhu Ztuner ECU

With the ECU switch installed, it was time to get back on the DynoJet!

Ztuner DynoJet

Next up was Barry’s car. A clean 2+2 Twin Turbo conversion.

Harry Sandhu Ztuner Knock Detector

Harry tunes using a knock detection device (why he’s wearing headphones) to pickup even the slightest amount of detonation. Detonation under boost DESTROYS turbo motors like the Z’s VG30.  

Harry Sandhu Ztuner Nistune

More Nistune manipulation – this time on the fly.

Harry Sandhu Ztuner Nistune DynoJet

Harry Sandhu Ztuner

Barry ended up having some MAF issues along with a possible VTC issue which made it really hard to dial in his car. But wait…

Ah ha! The miracle of Dyno tuning… 1000 horsepower! Harry’s a tuning God! JUST KIDDING – a glitch in one of the Dyno sensors caused this massive reading. Maybe someday Barry.

Harry Sandhu Ztuner DynoJet

All and all it was a great day. And after reviewing the footage – I’m incredibly happy with the stuff I was able to shoot (pats self on back).

The one caveat being the lack of a proper wireless lavalier mic (that was coming from the cameraman) prevented me from getting a clean (audio) interview with Harry – it was just too noisy in the shop. I’ll be heading down to Florida in the coming months to pick up a motor Harry is building for me (details to follow). So I’ll have a chance to interview him then, but it pushes back my timeline for the trailer some.

A big thanks to Harry, T&R Racing, and all the great Z guys I met on Saturday.

Stay tuned for more posts detailing the build progress (I know it’s been a while) and upcoming teaser trailers!


  1. Richard G. Krueger says:

    You being with Harry – – -Nothing like being with another stump – – I have two friends who have the same stump and we enjoy being with each other – -sometimes the three of us will go out together -we get some looks and it is fun – – -We are all LBE – -Same length as yours – – -I have tattooed mine with non permanent tattoo I don’t know what I would like – – – so in a week or two it washes off.

  2. Angelo Chokas says:

    Angelo In Dallas Harry is the nicest funniest guy. After getting everything organized to get him to Dallas everyone was very pleased. Harry God Bless your skills…

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