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The B18C1 Build-up

If you are in a giving mood  

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 a new oil pump and a Mugen oil pan.  One of the final details include the ceramic coating on the pistons.

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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.