Have you done the research for the motor swap and the ancillary items you need to perform them?
Then add the numbers up and do a cost comparison and see if it is faster, cheaper and easier to rebuild and upgrade internals, or swap ecus, rewire some stuff, find said motor(ship it), mounts, exhaust, intake, shift assembly etc etc etc. The motor may need to be rebuilt as well, at least opened to be trusted from almost any source.
I know it's an old link, I am lazy and didnt want to go further down the returned query form google. Its a good jumping off point when faced with your decision. Start at post 6. Personally I have three Hondas in project mode, one is my DD. Just finished new window wiring. My 92.....dont ask, and an 89 awd rt I am ditching, its an auto and too far gone.
The best route is rebuild your motor, get a cam, and tune it for more enjoyment then you had before. If I was going K, I would by a whole new rolling chassis. Just my .02.
I hear good things from hmotorsonline.com ... you could find your self a new D-series motor on there. Otherwise ... go whole hog and do a K swap. I think the EM (?) likes the RSX front clip.
How much of the work are/can you do(ing) yourself. This might be the mitigating factor. R&R + rebuild labor could put you out quite a bit, while the labor for removal of old and installation/inspection of new motor might be slightly cheaper. Best bet call a few tuners/mechanics/engine builders in town and get quotes on the labor (if not performing yourself). Then price out parts. Spreadsheets are your friend.
From the little experience I have, I ripped a whole motor with tranny out of the junkyard ($360) in an afternoon and I've been rebuilding for the past couple months. Granted I did a full tear down and building with new parts. If you find a good pick from the junkyard as far as nothing grenaded, I think it's probably the cheaper route if you plan on just "cleaning the motor up"; as far as full disassembly and cleaning all the carbon up off the pistons and valves, new rings, hone the walls, deck the block. I was able to do all that within a couple weeks. and your not really replacing any parts other than gaskets and seals.... If you have the time and tools to do it, I'd do it for the sole reason of learning and doing it yourself. Good luck!
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