A little garage mishap by a close friend of mine
offered me an opportunity to yank the Civic's motor back out and
pursue a loftier goal. This is a bit of a write-up discussing my
thoughts, research, parts sourcing, and final production of my
Civic's engine build-up.
The entire project started out when the distributor was installed
incorrectly causing the cam to bind, the timing belt to slip and the
valves to be bent. My thought was, after the rage and defeat
subsided, that it would be easier to remove the entire engine than
it would be to remove the head on it's own. With that in mind,
why not rebuild the bottom end with fresh bearings, and piston
rings? Then the process goes to "why not pick up some mild
cams, a set of JDM ITR pistons and a Hondata.
Good idea. I called up Tom Payn at Payn Technologies and
started to talk about what I wanted to do and how I wanted to go
about doing it. Very quickly, Tom talked me out of using OEM
pieces. With the idea of useful power in mind, we set out to
make my B18C1 a real autocross monster.
During the first call, we decided to go with a set of Wiesco
forged pistons, Eagle forged rods, Comp Cams state two cams, RC
Engineering's 370cc injectors, Hondata S200 ECU, Hondata thermal
intake manifold gasket.
Very quickly, I sent Payn the cylinder head. While waiting
for a set of pistons, Tom talked me into a few more details.
First, his attention to detail regarding bearing and other
clearances sold me on the idea of sending him my block and rotating
assembly in order to have his shop do the assembly on the short
block. An engine that can spin up to 9000 rpms needs to built
well! Along with that, we decided on balancing the crank, add
new oil pump and a Mugen oil pan. One of the final details include
the ceramic coating on the pistons.
With the engine assembled and run casually for about a thousand
miles, it was time to head up to Payn's shop and have the civic
tuned. It was running horribly rich after 5000 rpms. The
bane of running a program for a different engine's tune.
Fortunately, the tune was adequate at lower rpms to allow for proper
break-in. With roughly a thousand miles on the new engine, and
a fresh oil pan of Mobil one, after having drained the second pan's
worth of straight 30wt, I headed out to Payn's shop.
Very quickly, we discovered that the base tune went horribly rich
after 5000 rpms as I had originally guessed. The peak whp was
145, but at 4800 rpms. After ten or so runs, the engine peaked
out at 197 whp at 8250 rpms and 133 ft-lbs of torque at 7500rpms and
the engine tops out at 9200rpms.