Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle possible.

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Cobol
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Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle possible.

Post by Cobol » Mon Nov 18, 2013 4:51 pm

I have a (3 month new to me) 07 Freestyle that just started doing the helicopter noise last week. Dealership quoted $5300 for reman CVT and $1500 to install it.
So I thought a used Five Hundred trans for $500-600 locally was a great deal swap in. Everything bolts up except for transmission cooler but redoing the hoses fixed that.

THEN the problem... :)

The one problem with this swap is I can find NO DEALER who will flash the ECU so the car will actually run. The ECU part # are different from the Freestyle and Five Hundred so no dealer within 150 miles of me will flash it (So far, I am contacting the service dept at every ford dealer I can here in Central Fl.)

So far the dealership has told me the ecu/sjb is coded for vin and both are part of Transponder anti-theft system. The only possible solution that they have for me is to replace the ECU/SJB/Dash electronics with keys from a 500 and hopefully that will work but no promises!

So my question is has anyone been able to get this swap to work?
If you did get this swap to work, how did you get the ECU/SJB to work?

If a dealer flashed it for you, what dealer? I would love to get another dealer to talk to one within 100 miles of me to convince them to flash it.


Jack Watts
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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by Jack Watts » Mon Nov 18, 2013 7:53 pm

No one has done it so far (that I know of), so you're the pioneer! It seems like you have two options:

1) go to an independent dealer with a Ford-compatible J2534 passthrough cable (any reasonable-sized independent auto shop should have this). They can order the reflash from Ford if they don't have a subscription. A 72 hour subscription is $32.00. You could do this yourself, but the cable is crazy-expensive.

2) replace the ECU and SJB with those from a donor car. Parts are so cheap, this may not be that tough. If you go this route, you'll still have to have a dealer (or indy dealer) program a new key.

I wouldn't expect a dealer to do the re-flash. They'll be in "CYA mode" over something like this.

I'd try option 1 first. Good luck, and let us know how it goes!

Cobol
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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by Cobol » Tue Nov 19, 2013 3:04 pm

I will need to find someone selling the ECU and SJB together, wonder if I luck out and find ECU/SJB/key together would that work? I really want to see how the car runs. The 500 transmission even if I have to order a rebuilt one from Jasper is only $3200. Still cheaper than a rebuilt freestyle cvt.

I really wish I wasn't the first. I am worried about the 500 transmission because the 500+ lb weight difference. Plus my freestyle is almost always loaded with me, my wife, and my 4 kids. I guess we will see how long it lasts.

Good news is I found a dealership who said they would TRY to flash it but thought it would not work. Basically the part #s are different for the ECUs I have. They said if it was the same part # it would be no big deal but with different part #s it might not work.

They quoted me $189 for the flash, and the cost of a 148 mile tow!

Jack Watts
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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by Jack Watts » Tue Nov 19, 2013 4:26 pm

The 6 speed will be fine--it's the same box used in the Mazda CX-9 and the Volvo XC90, even with the V8 engine. Both of those vehicles are bigger than the FS. The torque rating is over 300 ft-lb, so it's well within spec of the transmission.

Question question: did you swap the ECU? My guess is that at a minimum you'd have to swap the ECU in from a 6 speed transmission, then copy the PATS data from the smart junction box and load it into the new ECU. That seems way less involved that copying the transmission firmware over to the other ECU (though both may work).

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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by NorseaBlue » Tue Nov 19, 2013 4:39 pm

Sorry to butt in, as I have nothing to offer on what you're trying to accomplish. But did you really mean it when you said that there is a 500+ lb weight penalty with the Aisin 6-speed over the CFT30 CVT? It seems rather unlikely to me.. but I'll go with what you say.
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Jack Watts
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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by Jack Watts » Tue Nov 19, 2013 4:46 pm

NorseaBlue wrote:Sorry to butt in, as I have nothing to offer on what you're trying to accomplish. But did you really mean it when you said that there is a 500+ lb weight penalty difference between the CFT30 CVT and the Aisin 6-speed? It seems rather unlikely to me.. but I'll go with what you say.
No, I think he's referring to the differences in curb weight between the FS and 500--and the concern that the Aisin 6 speed isn't capable of handling the weight of the larger vehicle. That would be a legitimate concern, but the Aisin transmission is rated for my higher values than the FS will ever see, and is used in heavier, more powerful cars than the FS.

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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by bbolerrn » Tue Nov 19, 2013 4:51 pm

I wish i had something to offer however I am proud of you doing this and your experience will prove to be extremely valuable to all of us. The cvt in my car has already been changed since I got the car from my mother if anything happens during the warranty period she will just take the car in for me :P
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NorseaBlue
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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by NorseaBlue » Tue Nov 19, 2013 5:21 pm

Thanks for clearing that up Jack. This will surely be a landmark achievement if Cobol can pull this off. Glad you're knowledgeable enough to help him try it.
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Cobol
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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by Cobol » Thu Nov 21, 2013 1:58 pm

Jack Watts wrote:The 6 speed will be fine--it's the same box used in the Mazda CX-9 and the Volvo XC90, even with the V8 engine. Both of those vehicles are bigger than the FS. The torque rating is over 300 ft-lb, so it's well within spec of the transmission.

Question question: did you swap the ECU? My guess is that at a minimum you'd have to swap the ECU in from a 6 speed transmission, then copy the PATS data from the smart junction box and load it into the new ECU. That seems way less involved that copying the transmission firmware over to the other ECU (though both may work).
Swapped the ecu with one from an 07 500 with the 6 speed. Found one dealer that is willing to flash. Is just the PATS would have to be flashed over? I can only ask the shop/dealers what I have been told what needs to be done for it to work.

NorseaBlue... Sorry I meant curb weight of the vehicle. It is about 500 lbs more than the fivehundred and the towing is 2000lbs which is double what the fivehundred is rated for.

Overall I am awaiting the dealership who quoted me the $189 to return my call so I can schedule a time to tow my vehicle to the dealership. :)

If this does work I would love it. Worst case I have to buy a rebuilt CFT30 and have to install it with the original ECU.

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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by Jack Watts » Thu Nov 21, 2013 5:13 pm

So, in looking at this a little more, here's what I think you'll need to do--program the SJB with the data from the new ECU (not the other way around).

The ECU will have the all of the build information. You can either pull the data from the ECU, or put that 500 ECU vin into the Ford software and it can pull the PATS data to write to the SJB. This actually looks like a pretty straightforward operation.

Good luck!

Cobol
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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by Cobol » Wed Nov 27, 2013 9:57 pm

Jack, I will see how the dealership does with the flash. I will ask about your way.

I have an appt monday the 2nd. Should know that day if it works or not. :)

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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by DanfromSterling » Sun Dec 08, 2013 11:13 am

I was hoping to hear back on this to see if it worked or the details. I have (3) freestyles and plan to drive them till they die. If this works I could drive them till they die and then bring them back for another life.

bbolerrn
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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by bbolerrn » Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:57 pm

I too am very interested especially as I am planning on getting another freestyle i have come across a beautiful blue awd I want to get my wife
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snailman153624
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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by snailman153624 » Tue Dec 17, 2013 11:19 pm

Personally, I find it unlikely that the two ECUs are even electrically compatible. It's amazing that the transmission even had the same harness plugs (did it?), considering the CVT will have hydraulic servo valves to modulate clamping pressure on the primary/secondary spools, and the 6-speed will have hydraulic solenoids (probably at least 1 for each gear!). The circuitry required to drive the components, measure signals, etc., is likely all different.

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Re: Swap 500 6 sp into Freestyle not possible.

Post by Jack Watts » Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:40 am

snailman153624 wrote:Personally, I find it unlikely that the two ECUs are even electrically compatible. It's amazing that the transmission even had the same harness plugs (did it?), considering the CVT will have hydraulic servo valves to modulate clamping pressure on the primary/secondary spools, and the 6-speed will have hydraulic solenoids (probably at least 1 for each gear!). The circuitry required to drive the components, measure signals, etc., is likely all different.
The Five Hundred and the Freestyle use the exact same engine, and are 100% interchangeable, so this isn't surprising at all. They also use the same wiring harness to the ECU and from the ECU to the transmission (if they didn't, you could just swap harnesses, but they share a common part number). The transmission control module is integrated into each transmission, and the only hardware that differs is included in the transmission box.

They made basically the same car with two transmissions, so this shouldn't be surprising. From a manufacturing standpoint it makes sense to use as many interchangeable parts as possible. The only real question is getting the PATS data from the ECU to the smart junction box, but I know that you can write data to the SJB--after all, if your SJB fails you have to be able to flash a new one some how.

Still, it would be nice for the OP to report back!

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