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A passion that traveled across international boarders

47160 Views 1377 Replies 22 Participants Last post by  Oldcivicjoe
Honestly, I don't know where I should start. Maybe a little bit of background first!

I have been messing with honda's for years, almost 15 to be exact (since I got my license). Many of the honda's I have owned and help friends repair in my youngeryears were the starting point of knowing what line of work I wanted to be in.

I love cars (anything with an engine really), more specifically diagnosing really difficult drivability issues with them. Getting stuck on a problem really pushed me to learn more about things I was unfamiliar with. Through my diagnostic experiences as a vehicle technician, I have learned an incredible amount of internal combustion engine theory and operation including all of the additional systems that support their overall operation and the mechanics at work which ultimately couple the engine output to usable work at the wheels (the full circle if you will).

UNFORTUNATELY, like most people can probably attest, I'm not made of money, I don't have lots of money, I can't spend lots of money all the time (unless I want my wife and son to starve and have no home), I really had to think hard 5 times before spending $50 bucks without jeopardizing something of a higher importance, but that honestly never stopped me from continuing to pursue learning about so many really cool tips and tricks related to Honda's on the countless number of member driven community forums out there (the last year and a bit have been right here!).

I've tuned honda's, built engines/transmissions for honda's, done stupid/cool things with honda's, and most of the time it has always been with someone else's money. All I have ever been truly able to spend on things was time, and I took full advantage of a learning opportunity when it presented itself on someone else's dime.

I am at a stage in my life where money management is still a HUGE part of my responsibility for my overall family goals (as I am still not made from it), but over the past two years things have started to get, dare I say it, slightly "easier" (knock on wood) for me to have like an extra hundred bucks or so every month to put towards my hobbies and things I like to do.

Like most people here, working on their cars is therapeutic and stress relieving. Often times it can turn into downright addiction! I think I'm in the stress relieving group, as I spend time and money on my projects but it's not the end of the world if I have to not touch them for weeks/months at a time.

So without more boring self introductions, I wanted to share an ongoing project that started in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and ended up in North Carolina.

Here she is, the d-series honda platform that has continued to be my hobby that started 2 years ago: the 1999 Honda Civic SI (Canadian, EX in USA) with a low mileage D16Y8 installed by the owner who wanted to get it back on the road eventually (original engine blew up). He lost interest but had money to buy newer toys to pass the time. This car sat in the back of a truck shop for almost 2 years, and the owners of the place were threatening the owner to tow it away if he didn't move it. So I bought it for $200 bucks from him because the engine ran and it was at least worth that by itself, and had it towed to my house.


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Got the B series crank main and rod journals measured, and also installed the main bearings and torqued the caps down to measure bearing inside diameter with a bore gauge for oil clearance measurements.

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The clearances will be in spec, although a few measured to be at service limit, but I believe this to be differences in bearing washcoat thickness. Next time I do bearings in this engine, I'm going to have a stack of 3-4 sets to pick and choose equal to find bearing shell combinations that are more even.

I shuffled the bearingas around, until I came up with the best combination of which bearing should be installed around which main journal. See 3rd sticky note (right most note to see the oil clearances.

I then labeled the bearing backs with a scribe to denote which bearing shell should go which journal when I get them back from WPC treatment (B is block side, C is main cap)

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Then tried out the B series breather/black box delete AN fitting kit I picked up years ago. I had NO idea where these were supposed to go, until I stared at it long enough with a flashlight lol

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Should work out pretty good with the existing breather/car can.

I'm also ready and setup for tomorrow to measure rod bearing oil clearances with caps torqued and bolts stretched to spec, weighing and shaving the rods, then getting them installed to the pistons:

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Then I can gap the rings, install piston/rods to bore, and then get the head bolted on so I can install cams and begin mockup of exhaust manifold stuff.

More fun stuff tomorrow!!
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Love the use of the UNCG sticky pad notes. I'm very guilty of using them this way too. Just got to keep them in order lol.
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Love the use of the UNCG sticky pad notes. I'm very guilty of using them this way too. Just got to keep them in order lol.
The entire B series bottom end is now blueprinted on sticky notes haha. Need to transfer all that to a spreadsheet.
Got a crap ton done today on B series.

Started the morning with a highly inappropriate cup of coffee, and measuring the rod bolt length before torquing/stretching:
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Determined the relaxed length of the bolts, established a bolt to rod placement reference schema, torqued them down with ARP lube and recorded the stretch, then determined whether the bolts would require any additional torque on the final install torque to achieve proper stretch.
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The bearings were installed before torquing, so I could measure rod bearing inside diameter with the bore gauge to determine actual oil clearance. The rod bearings torqued in the rods had a perfectly even inside diameter across all the rods, which meant that the rods themselves and any combination of bearing shells could end up in any cylinder on any rod journal, since final oil clearance with all things being even on the rod side will be determined by the crank rod journal outside diameter very slight differences:

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All in all, the rods will have an oil clearance average of .0013", which is perfectly in spec.

Next up was balancing the rods. I performed balancing checks and corrections using two methods, 1) total rod weight, 2) big end weights.

I opted to balance the total rod weight first, and make any big end specific balance changes later. But first, baselining. The total rod weights before corrections in grams:
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The heaviest difference was off by almost 2 grams. Even though I did check and measure the weight of the rod bearing shells before doing all this (all of them weighed exactly the same), i opted to balance the rods with the bearing shells installed to the rod, and still torqued down.

Balanced all the heavier rods down to the weight of the lightest rod using the sides of the big end to remove material from. Ended up able to balance the rods to within 0.1g of each other:
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I set up the jig to weigh the big ends, but turned out that after balancing the total rod weights, the big rod ends measured out to within 0.2g of each other! Obviously the majority of weight imbalance was definitely in the chunkier side of the rod for sure. So no need for further corrections to the big ends, they're ready for install.
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Moved on to balancing pistons.

Checked the wrist pins, they were bang on within 0.1g of each other, so didnt shave anything off of them. Same with the ring packs and the wrist pin locks, all weights matched, so moving on to pistons.

Even though the pistons technically weighed the same in terms of whole grams, they were off about 0.7g lightest to smallest. While I'm there, might as well get them within 0.1g.

The red numbers were the tenth of a gram value, and are the before weight measurement. Got them all cut down to match the lightest weight (top left piston) of 284.1 grams:
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Removed the rod bearings from the rods, and have the mains and rods all ready to ship out for WPC treatment out in Cali.

Cleaned, dried and lubed the rods and pistons, then installed them following speedfactory and wiseco specific directions:
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Moved on to measuring and setting the ring gap. Following Wiseco application specific gap factors, determined the 1st and 2nd ring gaps to be 0.018" and 0.019" respectively. Fit, measure, cut, repeat until in spec:
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Ready to slam em home:
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I am so tired of messing with this stupid thing, I will absolutely buy Wiseco one piece ring compressors next time this engine comes apart, in 75.5mm and 81.5mm flavors.
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For some reason, i could NOT get the oil control retainer rings to STOP PREMATURELY POPPING OUT OF THE RING COMPRESSOR PREVENTING PISTON FROM GETTING IN THE HOLE!!! I've never had so much trouble with this ol compressor before, i gave up on it about 45 mins later after STILL NOT SINKING A SINGLE PISTON. This compressor was promptly punted into the woods.

I ended up compressing the rings one at a time BY HAND and getting the pistons to go into the hole wayyyyyyyy easier than using that dang compressor tool!! Seriously, in about 5 mins, the pistons were in doing things ENTIRELY BY HAND.
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Cleaned every single block oiling passage thoroughly with bore brushes, pipe cleaners, brake clean and compressed air. Shes **** (spicc) (really? Sure, spanish/mexican guy derogatory, I get it, but context is everything lol) and span.

Installed the oil control restrictor, cleaned the block head bolt holes, oiled up the studs going down into the block, set them to torque spec, ARP lubed the studs on the head side, installed the Proseal HG, wiped down the face of the cylinder head, and set it over the deck, then finger tightened the head stud washers and nuts:
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Had a helper :)
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Finger tightened the head hardware, and set the valve cover over to cover the valvetrain and spark plug holes. Also test fit the intake manifold, installed the water pump and timing belt tensioner:
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Will torque the head down when the bearings come back and I'm ready to set the crank in.
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I have a ring compressor like that, last person to use it was my son about 20 years ago when he was 12. Dropping used Y8 pistons into my Z6 to replace the melted ones...
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Manifold flange came in. This is by far the best quality DIY manifold for the price point:

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CNC'd recesses for the schedule 10, and proper transitions from the oval ports into the circles. Good stuff from Treadstone performance!
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Little bit of late night work.

Placed the manifold flange on the head with the gasket to see if I'd need to do any matching to avoid restrictions. Aside from porting the head wider to match to the flange, there is no port interference from the flange or gasket at all. I also don't really want to match the exhaust ports for this manifold, since i highly doubt that small step down is going to adversely affect anything. At least it's stepping from small to big, which is correct.

In NA form? Yes I'd absolutely port match. But turbo, and only 350whp at that? I'd rather keep meat on the ports and take the 1.5 whp loss lol.

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Also got the Honed master delete and the modded pedals drilled and installed:

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Bearings boxed back up and ready to send for WPC this week:

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Took the Ishihara Johnson crank scraper out of its box and set on the toolbox, since after torquing rods and mains down in a couple weeks, fitting this guy will be next before bottom end gets buttoned up.

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Cleaned and installed the clutch release bearing, fork, boot and halfshaft to transmission:
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Vacuumed out the interior from all the plastic bits that shattered when removing the stock dashboard, and better test fit the PCI dash to see what the end product might look like. I still have no idea yet how I'm going to drill holes in the firewall for the dash nutserts lol, it's TIGHT against the windshield. I'll figure it out hahaha:

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One thing I really like about this dash, look at how much room for activities there is on the end openings! This is going to be so much nicer to get to stuff at the firewall with less interference with the roll cage!

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Cleaned up and test mounted a few brackets, mounts and alternator:

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Bearings just mailed out to WPC treatment, next day air. Turn around time is 4 days, so I should have them back sometime next week, then bottom end can get buttoned up!
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WPC has received the bearings and sent me an invoice already. I paid the invoice, so should have them back next week.

Also ordered a few other remaining B series bits, should have them next week as well:

I don't have many things left on my to-get list for the B series. I anticipate it will be ready for the dyno early March.

Still have a few chassis specific things to get, but not many!

Registration for Hyperfest opens this Friday at 1PM, so I'm jumping on a spot as soon as the page is ready. Also have a buddy from work coming to hyperfest as well, he just bought a 2023 Subaru BRZ, and he's itching to get it on track.

Also, new for this year, talking with @Soul Engineering over the last couple months, I think we're going to spend a few weekends doing drag strip days with Grey car, getting it dialed in terms of engine and chassis mods.

We have a few drag strips near us. Even though its not a drag car, I think it will be a great place for test and tune, to give the new components a shakedown at speed to work out any bugs before the road course at hyperfest.
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I bet it still gives a good accounting of itself at the strip. A drag car shouldn't ever be on a road course, but that doesn't mean a road course car shouldn't ever be on a drag strip 😃
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She's gonna be a ripper on the drag strip
ATI damper, motor mounts and treated bearings will all be here by Monday.

Might head out to garage to work on the dashboard and wiring harnesses a bit more tonight. Also might tack together some of the log manifold piping. Will post pics later if I make progress!
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Hyperfest 2023 slot confirmed!
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Prices went up 12-15% this year unfortunately.....

Got the PCI dashboard permanently installed finally. I was wanting to wait till I got the dash harness buttoned up, but something I love about this dash that I'll allude to in a bit made me press forward.

First, some words of advice for those wanting to purchase this dash: it is DIFFICULT to drill holes in the car firewall at the allotted mounting holes with the windshield still in the car!! Not saying you shouldnt buy one, but just make sure you have the tooling required to get you through the situation should you choose to try it. It takes some creativity, but its not impossible.

On to the good. This dash is AMAZING for a car going full race car. I can see everything underneath, even when permanently installed. I have full visibility to the pedal assemblies for adjustment, all the chassis harness firewall passthroughs, visibility and access to the harness itself, access to the sides and tops of the steering column still, etc. Its fantastic!

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Also fully buttoned up the brake pedal assembly to the firewall and installed the master cylinder pushrod and clevis to the new pedal hole, and got it properly adjusted. Just need to switch the lines over to the new master, and bleed the brakes with the new wilwood fluid.
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Got some more done in the shop tonight.

Tested the mounts to make sure everything was kosher:
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Installed the TB, and finally fixed the one stripped out MAP sensor adapter hole thread where I just jammed a wood screw in there previously to get by, just went ahead and converted both holes to M5:
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Kinda pissed about this, didnt even think about the IAC being different between B and D, but sure enough the holes are spaced much further apart. I'll need to get an IAC:
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Also got the water pipe and thermostat housing spruced up and cleaned, ready for orings and new tstat:
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Also received the new shift knuckle for the B series trans, so I was able to finally bench shift it, it worked out great:
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Here's my vote to keep that shift knob lol!!

Lots of good progress
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Here's my vote to keep that shift knob lol!!

Lots of good progress
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