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Rear End - Tech Support December 2008

Tech Support

Day Photography
Dec 1, 2008
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Here's where we act like we know something technical about cars. Feel free to ask us about your technical troubles. Write us at or Super Street c/o Tech Support, 6420 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048. Feel free to include a picture of your project or tech problem.

Question Of The Month
Q I am a new subscriber and a big fan of SS. I have a '91 Civic hatchback standard model. I have installed a Fidanza 7 lb. flywheel, Unorthodox crank pulley, 4-2-1 header, Hurst short shifter, GReddy shift knob and a few other mods. I have a couple of problems that I need your help with. I was wanting to know what all I would need for a drum to disc conversion. Where can I find aftermarket kits or which other Honda rear disc brakes would work? Would I have to change the master cylinder also? And are there any aftermarket suspension parts to replace the heavy steel parts? Which cable or hydro 5-speed transmission could I use to replace the 4-speed the car has now? I would appreciate any feedback.
Harvey Cobb
Gloster, MS

A The only aftermarket kit for drum to disc brakes for your Civic is from If you choose to go with OEM parts, the '90-'91 CRX Si rear disc brakes and complete trailing arm will swap over. If you can't find those disc brakes, you can also use one from a '90-'01 Integra or '92-'95 Civic with rear disc brakes. You will not have to change the master cylinder, but it would be a wise idea to change both that and the proportioning valve. For transmissions, the easiest swap would be a 5-speed transmission from an '88-'91 Civic/CRX. Check the install section for step-by-step instructions of the brake upgrade.

Q My girlfriend has a '96 Altima with almost 190,000 miles on the stock engine (KA24DE). We were looking for a good motor swap instead of purchasing a different automobile. Would a SR20DET motor be able to fit in the engine bay? I ask this cause I don't see many Altimas with swapped engines. Or is there an easier swap available that would yield awesome results?
Erin Liverpool
Via the Internet

A Yes, a SR20DET will fit in the Altima. And the best part is, you can do it with all OEM parts. You won't need a mount kit, or need to cut or weld your car up. You will need to get a SR20DET from a FWD car, not the RWD version. There are several different SR20DET engines, the best being from a '90-'94 Pulsar GTi-R with almost 230 hp. But the GTi-R engine is AWD, you won't be able to use that transmission. So you'll need one from a Sentra SE-R or one of the like, and you will need to modify the block before fitting it to the transmission.

Q First off, I've got to say I love the mag and I hope your F22A motor kicks some ass in the Castrol Syntec Top Shop Challenge. Second, I have a 2003 Toyota Celica GT-S. It's not a bad car but I wish I had kept my Integra. Anyway, I was wondering if you know of any companies that make turbo kits for my car. GReddy makes a supercharger but it only fits the '00-'02 model. The car has decent power, but I want more. Any help in finding one would be awesome.
Tommy Leland
Via the Internet

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A The difference between a '02 and '03 Celica is that Toyota switched from a cable-actuated throttle body to a drive-by-wire version. Because of those electrical differences, the '03-'05 cars have a different ECU pinout than the previous years. This greatly affects the management portion of the kit. Hence the GReddy supercharger kit is made for the '00-'02. You could still bolt any '00-'02 kit to your car, you would just have to '00-'02 kit to your car, you would just have to find engine management made for a '03-'05. Check with GReddy for an E-manage application for a '03-'05. But if you fancy a turbo, there are plenty of those options; Smaay,, C2 Power, Brash Boy and several other companies that will custom-build you a kit.

Q I know that you guys are pretty smart, so I thought you might be able to help my amigo out. His name is Wu (last name), and he runs a stock Scion tC with a manual tranny. He got it a month ago, and another friend of ours said that he would give him a hundred bucks if he could beat the Euro tuner at school with a GTI, on the quarter. The GTI is lowered, runs Superleggaras, a bit of carbon-fiber, I think an Injen cold-air ram and Neuspeed pulleys. It does however run around with a DSG tranny, which according to him, is the 'best auto tranny out there'. Its hard not to laugh when he says that. Anyways, we all agreed Wu had to really do work (do work son!-SK) on his Scion, and I was wondering, what would you suggest? I say the full TRD supercharger, exhaust, intake, the whole nine yards. What's your opinion? If you help us out I can give you my bootleg porn I bought in China...and a blowup doll we bought there too!! Help us prove that pure Toyota sexiness is better than some metro-looking automatic VW!!
Luke Wylie
Via the Internet

A The bunny rabbit (they love it when you call them that) may have a metro stigma, but doesn't the tC have a bit of a girly stigma? Either way, both cars are pretty cool, and if our reader has a tC, then that's the best car ever! With the TRD supercharger, Wu's tC is estimated to make 200 hp. That's equivalent to what a new GTI makes already. So if you want to make sure you beat that slightly-modified GTI, we suggest going with a custom-forced induction kit. With a custom-made kit, you can put together a turbo or supercharger kit for +300 hp. Please send bootleg porn and a fifi doll in a box large enough not to pop her. It's a 'her' right??!!

Q I'm currently in prison and this magazine takes me into the import world that I long for everyday. I'll be a free man come 2010, to get back on my project. I just bought a '97 Honda Civic EK without a motor. I need some advice on choosing a motor. I want to be able to smoke a stock 350Z, but I've only got $6,000 for the swap, and I'll be doing most of the work myself. I'm familiar with the B series and H series motors, but want to try the K series this time around. From one who eats, drinks and sleeps JDM, I'm absolutely open for suggestions (Wong and Charlie). I also own a '01 S2000 but I want to make into another project. Any advice would be appreciated!
Miami, FL

A Well, with only $6,000 for a swap, the K series might be hard to do. If you can somehow get good pricing, on your things, you might be able to meet that budget. Hondata K-Pro, a header, mounts and a harness will cost over a third of your budget. Not to mention a shift adapter and if you want to install A/C or power steering. A K20 or K24 would definitely be able to put you ahead of the competition.

Q I was looking through my new August issue of Super Street, and come to find out that my letter I wrote you guys was on page 108. Thank you guys for writing back so soon and thanks again for putting it in the magazine. Myself and the other soldiers here in Iraq thought it was a good moral booster that I had my article in your magazine!

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I bought a new motor for my '98 Honda Civic while doing my part to fight the war on terrorism, here in lovely Iraq. It's a '98 H22A DOHC, VTEC 16 valve Prelude motor with 200hp @ 6800rpm and 151 lb ft. @ 5500rpm, also the compression on it is 10.6:1. I had the motor shipped home to Oklahoma. I called my brother the day it arrived only to find out my car had been broken into. They took my Jackson Racing supercharger, all my MSD parts and my air intake. I was pretty upset, but I already have this motor and have decided to keep on truckin' with my Civic. What do you guys think would be the best way to set up this new motor, supercharger or turbocharger? Thank you guys for supporting Americas Troops!
Chad Wofford
Tulsa, OK (but currently Iraq)

A Having 200whp of naturally-aspirated power in a Civic is pretty good already. But if you're on the hunt for forced- induction power, then you'll have to decide what type of power you like more, turbo or supercharged. Other than Jackson Racing, there aren't too many kits made for the H22. And those kits are made to fit in a Prelude. This might not work in your Civic, as it has a smaller engine bay, and less room between the firewall and intake manifold. Turbo kits are more abundant and more popular with the H22 motors. The only thing you would need to redo to fit a Prelude turbo kit would be the piping.

By Day Photography
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