Acme Lab Rat
Acme Lab Rat New Reader
12/29/15 1:01 p.m.

So, sounds like I'm getting a raise next year (huzzah!) and in lieu of doing all kinds of nasty things to my DD Subaru, I'm seriously considering an EG or an EK hatchback. Pros: light weight, double wishbone suspension, tons of aftermarket, decent looks, and after a few days of intensive research and spreadsheet-making, I have discovered what was already known by many: these things interchange parts like Lego. Cons: finding a clean, non-riced example for sub-$2k is getting harder these days, but not impossible. I'm willing to wait for the right car.

I talked myself out of boosting a D16, and into a B20 swap. B20B's are...ridiculously inexpensive, found one at the local yard for $300. I went back through some old threads and found out that B16 heads on B20 blocks is viewed favorably by some, and...down the rabbit hole I went. B20-friendly high-comp pistons (Wiseco) and some decent rods (Crower forged) can be had for less than $1000 (which isn't challenge money, but hey), bearings are cheap, and I figure I can piece a head together with castoff GS-R bits and the occasional aftermarket investment. Playing around with a compression calculator revealed an interesting number: 13.5:1 compression is pretty easily attained with the mixture of parts.

That sounds like a lot. Are we into E85 territory at that point? I know that an OBD1 conversion isn't hard to do, then you can start playing with various ECU's, but I am genuinely curious if E85 might be the right route at that compression ratio. Thoughts? Am I twisted, missing something obvious? Sounds like a decently fun rocketship with the obvious FWD drawbacks is possible. Halp.

Acme Lab Rat
Acme Lab Rat New Reader
12/29/15 1:09 p.m.

Also, FWIW, I'm not married to the B20. B18's aren't super duper expensive, just a bit less common in my searching. For that kind of money, though, I'd probably just go full B16. Dunno, I defer to the wisdom of the GRM community.

Desmond
Desmond Reader
12/29/15 1:32 p.m.

I drove a B20 swapped CRX. I dont think anything crazy was done to it, though I dont remember which head he had on there. Anyways, it was surprisingly quick. It actually startled me, not because it was crazy fast or anything, but it was no slouch and I didnt expect that at all. Decent pickup from down low, especially for a Honda. You can thank the broader torque curve for that I'm sure. Came out of an SUV afterall.

Brian
Brian MegaDork
12/29/15 2:12 p.m.

K24?

ssswitch
ssswitch HalfDork
12/29/15 2:14 p.m.

Man no wonder there are so many B-series swaps. I was looking at Mini-Me swaps but you have to spend a lot more money than that to be getting 13.5:1 compression out of a Frankenstein D-series build.

If E85 is available it's a good idea, but remember you'll have to run a flex fuel sensor with your engine management. On the cheap, maybe you could do water/meth injection?

92dxman
92dxman SuperDork
12/29/15 2:24 p.m.

What about a B18 w/some work...?

NickD
NickD Reader
12/29/15 2:27 p.m.

My friend always used to swear by LS B18B with a GS-R transmission for a cheap fun ride. Usually his ended up ingesting copious amounts of nitrous before things were through.

Acme Lab Rat
Acme Lab Rat New Reader
12/29/15 2:27 p.m.

In reply to Brian:

What I've learned from a quick eBay browse is that TSX K24's are upwards of a thousand dollars (my personal favorite trick is sellers clogging their item descriptions with as many flashy words as possible). From there you need a decent number of swap bits, yeah? Seems like more money, but maybe less problems?

In reply to 92dxman:

Sell me on it! Seems the B18C1 (which is the USDM GS-R version, right?) short blocks are going to run me as much as a B16A2 head on a B20B block.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/29/15 2:34 p.m.

For what it's worth, I was pretty happy with my B16A CRX.

92dxman
92dxman SuperDork
12/29/15 2:38 p.m.

That seems to be a pretty common swap. Looking on Ebay, it looks like the B20 is the affordable way to go.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/29/15 2:40 p.m.

Also, my friend drives a B20-powered EG. Loves it.

Acme Lab Rat
Acme Lab Rat New Reader
12/29/15 2:44 p.m.
ssswitch wrote: If E85 is available it's a good idea, but remember you'll have to run a flex fuel sensor with your engine management. On the cheap, maybe you could do water/meth injection?

I was thinking the Hondata s300 for EMS. As far as water injection...some kind of DIY vacuum solenoid sprayer could work. I have the "plans" for such a thing filed away, somewhere.

Acme Lab Rat
Acme Lab Rat New Reader
12/29/15 2:44 p.m.

In reply to David S. Wallens:

Wallens-sama, any idea if it's a stock B20, or if he's tinkered with it? Can you tell I'm bored at work?

Desy
Desy New Reader
12/29/15 10:33 p.m.

That is the beautiful thing of Honda. They are interchangeable, and it seems like as long as you buy a EF hatch/CRX and up, there are pretty much parts galore.

I had a b18c1 GSR and will say, damn that motor is impressive after the manifold opens all the way up and vtec does its witch craft. But for a true B18C1/5 (5 being ITR) you are looking at at least 2K for the motor alone. Now I've seen the B20's on a few lbs of boost do some crazy things. I've also seen b20 configurations walk v8's.

Good higher dollar swap: K swap with 6spd lsd. Hate to say it, but the motors good, makes good power, and has tons of support for swaps, and upgrades.

Good Mid dollar swap: H22/23. These can be picked up for around 1K and do put down great numbers thanks to them being the power plant for the Accord Euro-R and Prelude SI. And they are great for tq.

The way you're thinking would be pretty good too. Although I would do the GSR trans with SI 4th/5th gears to get to that top end better.

I just spent some time debating engine swaps myself for Honda. First with the GSR I had (no longer have it), I was going to J35 swap. Because well, it's pretty heavy for a Honda, so why not throw a big v6 in it? Then I traded the GSR for an accord wagon and took some time to figure out what I wanted to do power wise. Choices were: rebuild/restore F22A6 motor in it. Swap to a F20B for DOHC and vtec. Or option 3: H22/23 from prelude. H series being the "B" series for the larger Honda's of the 90's.

Acme Lab Rat
Acme Lab Rat New Reader
12/30/15 9:35 a.m.

In reply to Desy:

Redtop H22's are minimum of $1400 from what I've found. Non-VTEC motors aren't that interesting to me (need that JDM VTAK, BRO!!!11!) - suppose a headswap could happen. There is a bluetop H23A floating around on eBay right now, though.

kb58
kb58 Dork
12/30/15 12:42 p.m.

Or leave it fairly stock and put it into the back of this. You retain the reliability, keep the cost down, and effectively double the existing power-to-weight ratio.

FWIW, I used a stock H22A1 in the previous project (a tube-frame mid-engine Mini, www.kimini.com) and am using a turbo K24 in this car. Cost-wise, it's best to just leave the engine alone, but I know how that goes. I agree that for the money, a dead stock H22 or B18 is probably the best bang for the buck.

Desy
Desy New Reader
12/30/15 7:17 p.m.
Acme Lab Rat wrote: In reply to Desy: Redtop H22's are minimum of $1400 from what I've found. Non-VTEC motors aren't that interesting to me (need that JDM VTAK, BRO!!!11!) - suppose a headswap could happen. There is a bluetop H23A floating around on eBay right now, though.

Since I'll likely have my buddies shop (Endurance Motorsports)(sorry, name drop) do my swap for me, I can't give you the exact price of the motor and ecu prices but I know the entire quote for h22 with vtec was under $2500 parts/labor. Now I will be getting somewhat of a discount here, BUT even so, you don't have to get a H22 from Japan. The Prelude SI's came with them, and "dat vtec yo!" so you could likely buy a wrecked SI for the power plant, part what you don't need and scrap/re sell the shell to refund the overhead cost.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/30/15 9:40 p.m.
Acme Lab Rat wrote: In reply to David S. Wallens: Wallens-sama, any idea if it's a stock B20, or if he's tinkered with it? Can you tell I'm bored at work?

I can ask for specifics, but I know it has aftermarket cams. She said it's like 160-ish horsepower at the wheels but a lot of torque.

kb58
kb58 Dork
12/30/15 10:28 p.m.

For reference, a dead stock H22A1 with header and intake makes 190 whp.

wbjones
wbjones MegaDork
12/31/15 3:12 a.m.

too bad all the "bad" things that would do to me car class wise ... my 110 hp CRX would be a bunch of fun at 190

Our Preferred Partners
sbiKl8znZ0avXqfUF8ngQwreLHyFYItM