Anyone have experience with Vortex CDI on a CR125?

I run a mod Honda CR125 and recently picked up a Vortex programmable ignition. If need be, I could have it tuned for the engine/fuel configuration I run, but was curious if anyone here has been down that path.

Has anyone here run one, know someone that has, and thus have experience or advice to share?

Thanks in advance for any replies

It’s all down to who tuned/programmer the box. Without knowing who did that, or what spec they programmed it for… you’ll have to do some experimentation.

Typically the settings go from 1 (mild) to 4 (wild). But again, each one could have been programmed in any number of ways to account for any combination of tracks, pipes, cylinders, compression, fuel etc.

Leave it on 1 and use high octane fuel :joy:

Understood and agree with you on all that.
Maps should be tuned to the engine/fuel on a dyno,

Have you done much kart ignition tuning through a programmable ignition?

The Vortex ignition has ten maps, all tuned for Motocross, with about half intended for a better low end, and a series of power maps.

Not Vortex, specifically, but a buddy of mine runs a programmable ignition on his CR125-powered Aprilia RS50

Perhaps he could supply some info.

Would be a fun project but no. I pretty much ran whatever was on there and found creative ways to nuke the motor.

Interested to see how the motox maps work out. Usually they leave the power valve intact and run a very different pipe to what’s on a kart.

Unless you still have a moto pipe on it?

The engine is all kart specific setup, ported, no power valve, RLV R4 pipe, etc.

The maps are more or less agressive than stock ignition curve. Motocross focused meaning traction maps using a more retarted ignition curve at lower rpm.

You should have a tuner, and you’ll likely realize the best gains (in performance and safety margin) by getting on the dyno with the proper tools and software and dialing in the ignition to your particular setup.

Again, not debating merits to the obvious advantage of maps tuned on the dyno.

The hurdle in tuning the Vortex is that there are two distributors in the US, one of them sells the 99 CDI and they don’t offer kart engine dyno tuning for it.

I could spend about another $600 to get the software, find an old laptop running Windows XP, and a tuner willing to take it on.

But, I’ll likely have to settle for dyno pulls across the maps to sort out what works best.

I do have an old SPI ignition, but the map selector is missing and have not seen a spare for sale, if I can find another I’ll buy it and have that tuned.

Here is a reply I got regarding the maps

“The Vortex CDI is very popular for your 1999 CR125 shifter kart. We use the standard dirt bike maps for the kart application. Vortex doesn’t give out the specific data on the ignition curves. Map 1 is the best overall power, the others offer a variety of power delivery.”

And here are how the maps are assigned

“MAP 1” 1 Best Power Map
“MAP X10” 2 Traction / Start Map
“MAP X10” 3 Traction / Start Map
“MAP X10” 4 Traction / Start Map
“MAP X10” 5 Traction / Start Map
“MAP X10” 6 Linear Power
“MAP X10” 7 Linear Power
“MAP X10” 8 Linear Power
“MAP X10” 9 Power Map
“MAP X10” 0 Power Map

What’s your desired outcome here, I didn’t quite get it from the initial post, so I shared what I know (kinda generic to be fair) for the future benefit of other reading the topic.

Do you just want to play around the yhe CDI, or are you looking build a hot mod moto setup and skip programming it yourself?

@NSEWnoah might have some ideas on someone who can put a kart map on there if that’s what’s you’re looking for.

I can’t imagine the motoX maps being near optimal on a kart. No powervalve, longer full throttle periods, a lot more heat build up, peakier pipe, higher average RPM, sometimes super aggressive port timing and squish.

Also, make sure you have a ‘99 cylinder vs ‘00+. The ‘00+ is on the edge of denonating on a kart with stock porting, stock ignition and an R4/SKUSA pipe.

I was curious if anyone here had experience with it, and if so, what they could share since it’s It’s the only aftermarket ignition currently available for the 99 CR125.

The desired outcome would be more top end power than with the stock ignition without destroying engine parts, the flexibility to use different maps for different fuels, or even have maps made. I’m not racing it, and this engine is a hobby.

The engine is a mod motor. straight intake, ported cases, ported 99 cyl, Vforce, R4H or old Bills pipe, 2005 dome piston, but conservative chamber volume at 10.5cc’s. I’m not getting detonation on 100 octane today, but I’m sure a leaner jet or lower cc volume would see detonation.

From what I gather the maps are variations to the factory map, some designed for better traction in the lower rev range, others in a series of more aggressive power maps. I view the 10 maps as relative to the factory map. That said, I don’t actually know how the maps differ, and the folks that make and sell them don’t define the curves.

If someone knows the maps or has karting maps for these, I’d sure like to chat with them about it.

From where I am now,
It would be great to find a map that makes more power on 100 octane without detonation, and another more aggressive map for C12.

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Programmable ignitions can be glorious or they can be the devil. I unfortunately no longer program as I sold my software nearly 10 years ago when stock Honda got big and 90% of my mod customers traded in and went down that path. There are a few builders out there that still program but most have curves designed around their porting spec. And trust me, a swedetech curve doesn’t work well with my porting spec or a SRS or Darcy or whomever else’s internal setups.

Yes you can make more power but often times it creates more bad than good. Unless you need to find that last tenth or two and are willing to blow some stuff up finding it, stick with the stock CDI box and tune the crap out of it. The R4 pipe likes the stock box better most of the times anyways.