Diamonds Are A Girl's Best FriendI just wanted to write in and tell you that your magazine really impresses me. Not only that, but it really changed my perspective on Hondas. I got into the import scene in '99 with my S13 in high school, knowing nothing at all of "JDM" or SR20s. After selling that in '01, I picked up my '97 Eclipse GS-T in '02, which I still have today.
As you can see, I've never owned a Honda. Most of my friends had Toyotas, Subarus, and Mazdas, so you can say I've never had any real exposure to a nice Honda. The most I've ever seen were all the clich ricers. After the first time I browsed through your magazine on the stands, I continued to buy all of the recent ones. I love how you're such tech junkies, just like any DSM guy. I also give tons of credit to the people who figured out all your swaps and hybrid motors too. Very impressive! The knowledge you guys have is great. Honda owners = ingenuity. Last, mad props on being do-it-yourselfers! DSMers and Honda guys should unite! Anyway, much love.Reggie Nichols
Sincerely, one of the biggest compliments we've ever gotten. Thanks, and respect. - BH
DSMers should all get Hondas, and we'll all go beat up on Supra and Evo guys. Stupid Supra guys. - DB
EG ACI have a '95 Civic DX with a B16A2 motor swap. I love the motor, but since I live in Virginia, I'm going to need some heat this winter. Will the AC compressor from the stock motor work with the B16? Will the B16 compressor work with the DX's existing setup?Travis PerkinsCharlottesville, Va.
Unlike the setup in your house, the heater and air conditioning system in your car are two separate entities. The only thing they have in common are the vents from which the cool/hot air enters the cabin. That being said, as long as you connected the coolant lines to your stock heater core when you did the swap, you'll have heat. Air conditioning is a whole different ballgame.
Your stock compressor will work if you use a CRV bracket; then you can run mainly stock lines and everything will be great. The more common approach is to use B-series parts. You'll need a del Sol VTEC's bracket, a compressor from any B-series (except B20s), and DC2 Integra hard lines. Putting air back in the car after a swap is not hard, but finding the parts for a reasonable price is. Most of us just roll down our windows - Dr Barrios
HeadacheI was wondering if you could tell me whether the timing should be advanced or retarded when a head is milled. The reason I ask is because one person will say advance and another person will say to retard the timing. I need a better answer than that.Daniel FallsNiagra Falls, NY
If the head has only been milled to create a flat mating surface, you probably won't run into any problems. However, if the head has been milled to gain compression, your cam timing will be retarded in the process. The best way to deal with the situation is using adjustable cam gears.
Put the crank to TDC and the cams at 0 and 0. Adjust the valves. Once the valve adjustment has been done, move the cam gears approximately 1 degree advanced for each .012-inch that has been milled off the head. If the head has been milled heavily, you'll also want to perform a clay test on the motor to prevent the valves from hitting the pistons. - DB
A Spring ThingI am a long-time fan of Honda Tuning magazine. I have had a subscription to the magazine for the past few years, and I have been reading the mag since way back in the dual point fuel injection days. Let me tell you, I am Honda all the way.
Well, let me get to my question. I have a '91 Acura Integra LS, is it possible to install the '99 Civic EX lowering springs that I got from my cousin onto my car? They're Eibachs, so hopefully I can use them.Tanner OrtegaAbilene, Texas
The Civic springs will physically fit on your Integra's struts, but that doesn't necessarily mean it is the best of ideas. Integra springs are almost always rated higher than those of a Civic.
That being said, if/when you put these EK springs on your DA, they'll end up feeling a bit softer than the springs specific to your DA would. For a daily commuter, this isn't going to be a big deal. If you're looking for added performance from the springs instead of just a lowered stance, you'll be better off going with application specific springs. Either way, you should think about getting some upgraded struts to balance out the new springs and make your ride feel better and last longer. - DB
PR3 Sex ChangeI just got a B16A. It's nestled in a four-door DA. My question is: Will the automatic PR3 ECU that's in my DA run my manual tansmission? I've searched and I can't find a difference between any PR3 ECUs. I'd hate to find out that I have to buy a new ECU. Charlie RabalaisWilmington, NC
The answer to this question is a tricky one. I'll start by saying, yes, your auto ECU will run your manual B16, but not well.
First of all, the auto ECU will likely throw a check engine light (code 19). While you may be able to live with that little nuisance, you'll probably have a bigger problem with the automatic's maps. The auto ECU has a lower redline and less aggressive fuel and timing maps.
Now, before you go out and track down a manual PR3, there is another option. You can convert the auto PR3 into a manual one. Open up the ECU and find the resistor in the location marked R68. De-solder and remove the resistor. De-solder the open holes in the location marked R67 and install the resister from R68 into the slot. This process will get rid of the check engine light for code 19.
To change the maps, you'll have to chip the ECU. Check out the June '05 issue of Honda Tuning or www.pgmfi.org for info on how to do this. Once you've chipped the ECU, load a manual ROM and you're good to go. See, the auto PR3 is more than just a paperweight. - DB
Pondering LugsHey guys! Just want to let you know I love the mag! It is definitely the best source for the die-hard enthusiasts, such as myself. Anyway, I've been pondering the idea of doing a 5-lug conversion or bigger brake setup on my '00 Si. My question is, are there any USDM components you can use rather than shelling out the cash for the JDM varieties?
As you are aware, the ITR uses a 36mm axle, which isn't a big deal, but a want to swap the least possible parts. The CTR uses a 32mm, but cost quite a bit more. So do you know of components you can put together that will either directly swap or swap with minimal mods? Like most, I'd like to save as much as possible and the JDM components cost about $1000 on average. I love OEM, so I would rather upgrade using OEM parts. Are there bigger calipers/rotors that I can swap onto my application?Jacob CrossShreveport, La.
If you are planning on doing a 5-lug conversion for the sake of having 5 lugs, there is a way to do it for slightly cheaper than an ITR conversion, but the real reason to do an ITR conversion is the added braking power, which can be had for significantly cheaper using OEM USDM parts.
For the 5-lug swap, it is possible to use CRV hubs instead of the ITR ones. The hubs will be less expensive, but you'll still need to use ITR axles and brakes. This setup will still cost you upwards of $600, but at least it isn't $1,000-plus, like an ITR conversion.
If you're strictly looking for braking performance, there are far better, and cheaper, routes to take. Your best bet would be the "All in the Family" brake swap we did in the June '05 issue of HT on our project EJ8. We used Prelude VTEC rotors with '94-'95 Acura Legend dual-piston calipers. These rotors are identical to the ITR rotors (you could actually use Type-R rotors if you did the hub swap as well) and don't cost nearly as much. The calipers have more clamping power than the ITR offerings as well. If you really want to bling, NSX calipers can be used in place of the Legend ones. - DB
Yankin' My CableHey guys, I have a problem. I'm considering an F22B swap for my '96 EK Civic. Up until I got my Civic and started looking for a replacement engine, I hadn't heard much about them. I wasn't sure if it would even work. But after reading your magazine, I realized the F-series was pretty similar to the H-series, which has been done to death, so I was confident it could be done. I started looking and found an engine, tranny, ECU, and mounts, and was ready for the swap. There is one problem, though, that I can't figure out. How do I convert my EK shifter, which uses a linkage, to work on the F-series tranny, which is operated by cables? Please help.Daniel Simpson Phenix City, Ala.
It is easy to assume that the shifter cables would be the hardest part of this swap, but it isn't. It is surprisingly easy once you've gotten over how scary it is to cut holes in your chassis for the first time.
Wait until you've got the motor at least hanging in the engine bay before you install the shifter. This will assure that you've got everything properly lined up to prevent bad shifts.
You'll need a shifter assembly from an Accord or a Prelude to start with. Cut the lip off of the stock shifter hole under your center console so the shifter will sit flush with the chassis. After the shifter is bolted down, cut a hole (around 2"x3") slightly forward from the shifter assembly to run the cables through. Connect the cables to the transmission first; then run them through the hole you made in the cabin. Now all you've got left is connecting the cables to the shifter and you're ready to rock. - DB
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