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How-To – Converting an Automatic Transmission 5th Gen Civic to Manual Transmission


Basic hand tools
Wire wheel or angle grinder with sanding disc
Drill and bits
Basic electrical supplies (soldering and crimpers, etc)

:: --- The Big Parts List --- ::

Engine Bay

1. Clutch Kit (includes disc, pressure plate, throw out bearing, necessary bolts)
2. Clutch master cylinder
3. Clutch slave cylinder
4. Arm for slave cylinder to throw out bearing
5. Hydraulic line from master to slave
6. Clutch master cylinder reservoir
7. Upper Tranny Mount
8. Upper Tranny Mount frame hanger bracket
9. Front Lower Tranny Mount
10. Manual Transmission
11. Flywheel
12. Manual Starter

In-Car and Other

1. Slim 5-speed brake pedal arm
2. Entire Clutch Pedal assembly
3. Shifter
4. Shift Knob
5. Shift Linkage
6. Spring Pin (aka Bitch Pin)
7. Shift Boot
8. Shifter Floorboard Cup
9. Floorboard cup boots (top & bottom)
10. Piece of sheet metal & jb weld or actual welder used
11. Manual Transmission ECU for your motor (or convert the existing)

:: -- Getting Started -- ::

Removing the Auto Junk

Step 1: Remove engine and transmission, you can get away with just removing the transmission, but it makes drilling the spot welds for the upper mount a serious pain in the ass

Step 2: Unbolt starter, automatic transmission, torque converter, and flex plate from the engine.

Step 3: Bolt and torque flywheel to engine, clutch to flywheel, and transmission to engine, with throw out bearing installed. Bolt 5-speed starter to transmission (may require new bolts). Finally, bolt slave cylinder to transmission just to hold it all together.

Step 4: Drill spot welds on automatic transmission upper mount hanger on frame rail, and remove.

Note: for these next steps, it is best to remove your driver’s seat so you can lie on your back to work.

Step 5: Remove cotter pin and pin from brake pedal and remove fat auto brake pedal.

Step 6: Where the clutch pedal assembly will be located, you will see an electrical box labeled “Auto Interlock”. Unplug, remove the nuts that hold it, and set that aside. When you took those nuts loose it will have also freed the block off plate where the master cylinder will come through.

Step 7: Remove center console and remove all automatic transmission shifter assembly parts. When you are done you should have nothing left there except for a white slider with wires attached to it, and two holes in the floor.

You have now removed pretty much everything you will need to remove to rid yourself of automatic transmission gayness.

Pedal Assembly and Clutch Parts installation

Step 1: Remove clutch pedal from assembly, and slide assembly into place. From the firewall side, slide clutch master cylinder into the hole where the block off plate was located, and re-use the two nuts that held it to bolt the master to the assembly. Also install one bolt up at the top of the assembly , there is a threaded hole for it in the body of the dash.

This is very important! Without it your clutch will be extremely sloppy, and with an aftermarket clutch, will not disengage, as the pedal will flex around under your feet, instead of actually pushing on the master cylinder

Step 2: Finish installation by putting clutch pedal and slim brake pedal back into place. Replace any springs you may have removed to get pedals out.

Step 3: Install hydraulic line. There are places on the firewall especially for the line to run, and you will need to remove the battery tray to get the line under it.

Replacing the Upper Mount Hanger

Step 1: Make sure you wire wheel or grind the paint of the weld surfaces before you place where the upper Tranny mount hanger will be located, you can for now eyeball the location to be about 1” forward from where the auto hanger was located. This picture shows the auto hanger, which sits at an upward angle, while your new one will sit flat

Step 2: Now that you have the lines in place, and the hanger removed, and the transmission already mated to the motor, re-install engine and transmission.

Step 3: Bolt up all engine mounts, the rear T mount, and the lower Tranny mount.

Step 4: Hang tighten the upper Tranny mount to the new frame hanger mount, and bolt it to the transmission. Place a jack under the transmission and support it so that the stud of the lower Tranny mount is centered in the rubber. Line up the upper hanger on the frame so that it sits with equal slop on each side of the mount, clamp into place and weld it up. Spray paint the bare surfaces so they do not rust

Step 5: At this point, complete the engine installation as if you were going to drive it away. Axles, tighten mounts, fluids, etc… (Don’t forget transmission fluid)

Shift Linkage and Shifter Assembly

Step 1: Slide floorboard shifter cup into the rounded rectangle hole in the floorboard and weld into place. As you can see I skipped that step in this pic, it still works, just isnt all sealed up

Step 2: Cover long oblong hole with sheet metal and weld shut or jb weld shut. You might lay down a couple short beads with a welder, then jb weld the rest to seal it. It can be difficult to weld inside a car.

Step 3: Assemble shifter to shift linkage pieces so that the three are one piece together.

Step 4: Bolt Linkage to transmission and hammer the spring pin into the other piece. Slide lower floorboard cup boot onto shifter, and slide linkage into place. You will most likely have to drill holes to bolt it to the floorboard.

Step 5: Once linkage is bolted to floorboard, install upper floorboard cup boot, and test linkage to make sure it shifts smoothly. As a bonus you may want to steer a bit and make car noises while shifting, just for good measure.

Almost There!


Step 1: Starter won’t turn! On the white slider mentioned earlier, you will see two wires that are thicker than all the other wires. In order for the starter to turn, these wires have to be crossed together. The proper way to do this, is to use the switch on the back of the pedal assembly and run each wire to one of the connectors on that switch. This makes it so that you have to shove in the clutch to turn the starter over. However there are other methods that can be used. You can simply take a butt connector and connect them to each other directly, or you can use a toggle switch. Be aware that if you do this, you can turn the starter with the car in gear, and send launch it into the car in front of you.

Step 2: Reverse lights. I am not completely aware on the exact method of doing this, but it basically boils down to locating the necessary wires on that slider, and connecting them to the reverse sensor on the transmission. I will try to get the correct information and update this as necessary.

Step 3: The rest of that white slider can either be cut off and the wires taped off so they don’t contact anything, or you can just shove it under the carpet.

Finishing Up

Step 1: Fill the clutch reservoir and bleed the system. Basically works the same way as brakes. There is a bleeder valve on the slave.

Step 2: Double check all the aspects of the engine installation, make sure everything is tight and you have all your fluids in and what not

Step 3: Install shifter boot, center console, and shift knob. Re-install driver seat.

Step 4: Plug in your Manual Transmission ECU

Step 5: Test your clutch by feel, then start the car and make sure it works.

That’s IT! Now go do a fatty burnout, film it, and post it on your favorite forum.

Note: from what I have been told, this write-up will work basically the same for the 96-00 Civic, with the only difference being the upper transmission mounts, as it is quite different, and you don’t have to do all the cutting and welding.

Shackle me NOT!!!
1995 Honda Ballade
4,692 Posts
good write up............I've done this before and it's VERY rewarding. I drove in to my mates house at 10 am as an auto and drove out at 3pm as an ass ripping manual.

good post :TU::TU:

0 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
how much does something like this, were can i find a trans to do this

97 del slo
802 Posts
i only skimmed through it, but it doesn't look too bad of a job.

nice write-up... i'm gonna save this on file for later:)
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