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PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
12/30/21 5:32 p.m.

Progress has been made.

Waterpump, FMS, timing belt kit, RMS all changed. Maintenance = DONE.

I pulled the plug from behind the exhaust cam and was pleased to find the cam had the receptacles for the CAS. So that has been fitted.

Butterflies have been pulled out of the intake. I need to tap and seal the hole for the butterfly shaft next. Going to use a 10mm x 1.25 bolt. (No pic.)

EGR valve swapped (may need to clearance a bit, but seems to sit flush):

EGR Differences ('97 on left, '02 on right). I did this so I could use the '97 harness and not modify the EGR connector.

Now here is where I would like some feedback as to whether what I have done will work or I'll die in a huge fireball.  Everywhere I have looked said I need to use a '99 fuel rail and FPR from an NA. I didn't like that answer. So I do what I do and tinkered and made the '97 fuel rail fit.

Original Fuel Rail:

Modified Fuel Rail:

1. Gently manipulated fuel feed pipe to clear '02 intake.

2. Rotated FPR 180 deg. It is sealed via O-rings and easily rotated.

3. Removed hangers for fuel return line.

Not marked: Ovaled mounting holes with modified spacers to maintain proper angle on '02 fuel injectors.

FPR Vacuum line nipple had to be bent slightly downward for clearance.

Test fit:

It fits very well!  My only concern is some a slight angle at the fuel rail to injector interface, but it is an o-ring seal so some angle can probably be tolerated. I'll be sure to pressure test carefully before any driving.

EGR to FPR clearances are tight, but there is enough slop to get more clearance than shown in the picture. Bending of the FPR vacuum nipple down gave some more clearance as well.

So hopefully This will allow me to keep using most of the stock '97 ECU wiring. Next will be figuring out the wiring. My dad is painting the valve cover for me so the top will look nice at least :)

Let me know what you think!  Thanks!

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/30/21 5:41 p.m.

As long as the injectors don't leak at the fuel rail (like you said, it's an o-ring so it can handle misalignment), I think it'll work well. The 1.6 cars have a compatible FPR with different tubing configuration in case you run in to problems - my car runs a 1.6 FPR with some bent lines on it. Probably a 99 fuel rail but who remembers.

Just remember the feed line goes to the rail, not the FPR :)

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
12/30/21 8:19 p.m.

One other potential area of concern is whether or not you're getting an airtight seal between the injector and the manifold.  That's not an O-ring, and a small vacuum leak here will drive the ECU nuts.



PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
12/31/21 7:38 p.m.

I think I can do all my wiring without any splicing!

I took apart the fuel injection harness for both engines. Good news is that there are two harnesses in there. One for temperature sensors and fuel injectors. One for ignition. I was able to use the fuel and temp harness for the new engine, and use the ignition harness from the '97 engine. I am assuming that the wires are in the same locations on the connectors for the fuel and temp harness. The connector fits though.  I will need to make a mount for the '97 coil packs on the new engine.   So right now, I don't think there are any custom connectors or splicing required for the swap. Just some harness swaps.

1. Fuel and temperature harness from '02 engine. 

2. Ignition harness from '97 engine.

I wrapped and protected the harnesses after this picture was taken. I kept them seperate in case I swap to the '02 coils later.

PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
1/17/22 7:04 p.m.

Made some more progress on the engine this weekend.  I redid the fuel rail spacers. I didn't like the way it was sitting. I tried some other plastic spacers, but wasn't sure if they would hold up to the heat. I had some old Miata seatbelt spacers sitting around and they were the right diameter. I cut and ground them down so they had the correct slope to hold the fuel rail at the correct angle to the injectors, and I was able to tighten the fuel rail down more without over tightening on the injectors.

Once I was happy with that, I put the valve cover in place (paint courtesy of my Dad). With the VVT pipe now in place, I needed to make a mount for the 1.8L coils since I'm not using the '02's coils at this time. That required modifying the coil bracket and making a mount. I cut the circled part off of the coil bracket. Then used a piece of angle iron for the mount. I need to make a heat shield next since it sits right over the header. However, the stock plug wires fit, but I may need to extend the factory harness to plug into the coils. I haven't gotten to that point yet, but I didn't see any other location to mount them, and I need the engine in the car to measure the harness.

Also seen in the above picture is the modified 1.8L EGR tube. No cutting or welding required, just some slight bending and flipping of the support clamp. I also ran a new fuel return line (blue corrugated tubing protecting it). I was able to go from the rotated FPR and route the line back underthe intake and exit about the same place as the 1.8L fuel line. 

Besides the heat shield, I need to find a vacuum diagram for a 1.8L and the VVT engines. I think all non VVT wiring is sorted and *should* plug right into the factory harness. 

Clutch and flywheel install, mounting the transmission, install, and fresh fluids should be about it for Phase 1 - running w/o VVT.  Then, I'll start Phase 2 - tackling the VVT wiring and getting that functional with the VVTuner.



PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/12/22 9:04 a.m.

I'm behind on keeping this updated.

I had to bend the dipstick tube to clear the new coil mounting. 


Happy Meal installed

Engine and transmission are in!

Most of the wiring has plugged right in with the swapped parts and wiring.  I have been trying to find vacuum diagrams for a '97 and '02 to see what needs to change. I hope to accomplish that this weekend. 2 months until track time.

Things to do list:

The car has been sitting on the lift for about a month now. Time to get back to work!


wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
3/12/22 9:08 a.m.

Cool Stuff. Do continue.

Rodan SuperDork
3/12/22 1:24 p.m.

Ahhh.... brings back memories!  wink


Just keep plugging away a little bit each day, even if it's only one small task or wire connection.  Sooner than you think you'll be down to the last item to check off the list!

PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/12/22 7:03 p.m.

No pics today, but got some work done.

All harnesses connected and plugged in. Battery on charger.

Vacuum lines hooked up. Not sure if they're in the right place, but they connect. Only have one open port on the intake. I need to make a mount for the vacuum control for the FPR, or extend some lines. But I want to get it running first before spending more money.

The #4 plug wire does not connect to the coils. When I did the test fit, the spark plug was not fully seated. So for now, I used a stock plug wire from the VVT engine  and expanded the coil connection out so it made contact with the 1.8L coils. If it works, I'll make a better fix. Also, the 1.8L plug wires do not seat into the VVT valve cover. I needed to trim the rubber around the top of the plug connection to fit them down into the plug holes. Again, not a pretty solution, but if it works, I'll make something better later. 

Header is installed and connected to the exhaust. The diveshaft is back in. 

Hopefully tomorrow I can get the radiator back in, fill all fluids, and try to start it up.  We'll see if life allows that though.  

PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/12/22 7:06 p.m.

In reply to Rodan :

Your install is much cleaner than mine.  Do you have pics of how you routed the vacuum lines?

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
3/12/22 7:30 p.m.

I'm not sure I'd want to hang the coils over the exhaust manifold like that, even with a heat shield...

OEMs always have fuel rail spacers made of some non-conductive material like plastic, although I'm not really sure if it matters.




PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/12/22 7:36 p.m.

In reply to codrus (Forum Supporter) :

I haven't really found a better place to install. The heat shield I have does a pretty good job keeping the opposite side cooler.  Step 1, get it running. Step 2, debug and clean up.  I am going to keep an eye on the mounting though. I don't like it due to being above the header either.  


The fuel rail spacers that came out were plastic but due to angle differences wouldn't work. I'll have to research that a little bit. Taking the rail out now would suck!

Rodan SuperDork
3/12/22 10:41 p.m.
PMRacing said:

In reply to Rodan :

Your install is much cleaner than mine.  Do you have pics of how you routed the vacuum lines?

It's been a few years, but IIRC mine was pretty simple at that point.   Small line from the front of the manifold to the FPR, small line from the rear to the MS3 (MAP), larger line for the brake booster, and PCV.

Track car, so no EGR, no cruise, etc.  I started with VCTS manifold with butterflies removed, and shortly thereafter switched to a flat top manifold, so no VICS/VCTS lines either.

Don't have a pic handy of the intake side.

Rodan SuperDork
3/13/22 8:24 a.m.

Well, I was wrong... they say memory is the first to go, and I can't remember what's the next to go.  cheeky

Here's an overall shot of the flat top showing the brake booster and PCV connections


Here's a shot at the front.  Yellow arrow is MAP line to MS3, Red arrow goes to FPR.

PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/13/22 9:00 a.m.

Thank you! 

PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/13/22 6:13 p.m.

Its alive!  I got it fired up. I didn't run it long though because I didn't have water in it yet. I just wanted to see if it would run. Of course I did what Kieth warned me not to do earlier in the thread...mixed up the fuel lines. *facepalm*.  But it is a huge relief that it seems my wiring job and fuel rail worked! 

I also made a bracket to move the throttle cable bracket back a bit since I kept the 1.8L throttle body. 


Noddaz GRM+ Memberand UberDork
3/13/22 6:19 p.m.

PMRacing says "Progress!"


And progress is good!

Rodan SuperDork
3/13/22 6:55 p.m.


It's a great feeling when a swap fires up for the first time, even if it's brief.  yes

PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/26/22 4:52 p.m.

It drives!

I just pulled it out of the garage and around the block, but it moves under its own power, gets up to temperature, idles well.  I had to fix one coolant leak which was just swapping a spring clamp to a screw clamp. 

Next nice day that I don't have to pick my daughter up from school, I'm going to drive it to work (and hopefully back). 

Phase 1 is 99% complete. A long shakedown run is all that is left.  

Phase 2 is to get the VVTuner wired in and functional.

PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/27/22 9:27 a.m.

In preparation for Phase 2, where can I find the connectors for the VVT solenoid and the Cam angle sensor?  They didn't come with my engine. Do I need to find them off a salavage car? Does anyone sell the pigtails for them?



EDIT: Should have googled first.  They're available on RockAuto

Rodan SuperDork
3/27/22 7:48 p.m.

In reply to PMRacing :

I thought I posted this in this thread, but it must have been somewhere else...

MT.net connector thread

Ballenger Motorsports

PMRacing GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
4/2/22 3:33 p.m.

I did a 10 mile shakedown run today.  So far no odd smells or leaks, and it runs easily to redline. I'm going to do a longer shakedown run to work when the weather gets a bit nicer before tackling the VVT. However, I think I can start making the harness. I have all parts needed to connect and tune. 


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