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J1000
J1000 New Reader
8/1/18 10:40 a.m.

Speaking of which, ebay.co.uk and ebay.de have a treasure-trove of parts for these cars at super cheap prices compared to the JDM import folks. I have a couple goodies on their way.

J1000
J1000 New Reader
8/6/18 10:41 a.m.

I got BRAND NEW seatbelts for FREE!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oR0FLrn5pDA

J1000
J1000 New Reader
8/9/18 11:21 a.m.

One of my favorite parts of this car, red gauges:

J1000
J1000 New Reader
9/1/18 9:50 p.m.

Minor update I added a new head unit with Bluetooth and redness

J1000
J1000 New Reader
9/13/18 11:19 a.m.

I just converted the car to E85. I have been experimenting with it on other vehicles so I decided to convert my whole fleet. Nowadays a flex fuel sensor is less than $30 and it is supported by my K-Pro ECU so why not go for it. There is a station pretty close by my house that sells the cheapest E85 in town at $2.15 a gallon also.

First things first, I had some maintenance to do. When I installed the DC header I re-used the seal because every replacement I ordered was the wrong size. It was leaking and it just got worse. Finally, I just went to a local parts store and told them to ignore the computer and just match it based on size and I got the right one! I also replaced the manifold gasket, bolts and springs, and also replaced the seal and bolts and springs for the muffler. Now the car is quiet again, yay!

 

 

Then I pulled the ECU out and located the Ethanol pin on the ECU and ran the wire out near the plug.

 

 

 

I installed the GM flex fuel sensor. Unfortunately, there's no real great way to bolt them on or secure them nicely, so it's zip-tied to an un-used bracket near the fuel hard line:

 

After some drama and wasted time not realizing my specific calibration of the ECU does not support E85, I was able to get the correct calibration loaded and the car driving. Next stop was the E85 pump! I pumped in about 7 gallons and now my ethanol % is reading 44%. I have not really tuned it at all yet and it's 11.5:1 at WOT so I'm anxious to get started on that. Unfortunately, tuning the Hondata K-Pro is much more complicated than Megasquirt, which is what I learned to tune cars with but it has so many more cool features to play with.

 

J1000
J1000 New Reader
9/21/18 10:10 a.m.

The poor Honda is being neglected both in project time and drive time as I got an SUV toy I've been messing with. The E85 made a big difference in HP! Probably gained as much as the header and K-Pro both added together. It sounds different too. Local regular gas went up in price by 15 cents so I'm saving money running E85 now too!.

 

As for updates on the Si, I changed the blinker bulbs in my Type-R taillights. These lights have clear indicator lenses so the stock bulbs just shine white which isn't the greatest for indicating and clashes with the front and side signals. Simple enough to install some yellow bulbs:

 

Run_Away
Run_Away Dork
9/21/18 11:35 a.m.

Very jealous of the e85 setup!

The0retical
The0retical UltraDork
9/21/18 12:48 p.m.
Run_Away said:

Very jealous of the e85 setup!

I'm jealous of the readily available e85 as I want to run it pretty badly. I do second that your fueling setup is sweet however.

 

J1000
J1000 New Reader
9/22/18 10:27 a.m.

Yeah I should have been using E85 for years. My other car is a turbo Miata so I could have been getting way better performance. Really I see no downsides other than just having to go to the pump more often.

J1000
J1000 New Reader
9/24/18 1:54 p.m.

First tank of E85 (actually E70 winter blend) and got 26 MPG which is not bad, I've gotten that on regular gas before. I tuned it so that it runs at 15.2:1 AFR in cruise conditions and idle to take advantage of ethanol's lean burning benefits which probably helps. I could probably go even leaner in some places. Also the car makes more power throughout the whole rev range so there's not as much downshifting required on the highway. So far I'm liking it.

J1000
J1000 New Reader
12/17/18 11:27 a.m.

Haven't had many updates just been driving the car but I just did another auto-x yesterday and the car was great!

In preparation for the auto-x I spent some time street tuning my car on E85. Up until now the highest I ever ran was 70% ethanol (E70) but I found a station that was selling E88 (88%) and filled up. I should have waited til my tank was a little lower, but I still ended up with a solid E80 blend. The car definitely responded well to the change. I also cleaned up my spark and fuel tables in the K-Pro and tried to dial it in a little better based on my butt-dyno. 

My last auto-x I couldn't come within 2 seconds of a K24 swapped EP3, but this event I had a faster time than him right up until his last run where he got me by a few tenths! My car is much faster than before, and you can tell in the video it now pulls strong from 3500rpm and revs cleanly to 7400.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQ1R7rxMYs8

 

Since this is my daily driver I could live with poor handling if the ride was ok, but the ride is bad on this car. I may as well add some coilovers and try to improve it.

mr2s2000elise
mr2s2000elise Reader
12/17/18 11:51 a.m.
J1000 said:

 

The0retical, just get some Simple Green and a dish brush and a garden hose. Then when it dries off hit it with a microfiber and some FW1 cleaning wax and you'll look like a pro too ;)

Do you have to wrap anything ? I am always afraid I would spray the wrong thing and damage the car 

J1000
J1000 New Reader
12/17/18 5:39 p.m.

No, everything under the hood is pretty much water proof. Just don't use high pressure around electrical plugs or sensitive fittings.

mr2s2000elise
mr2s2000elise Reader
12/17/18 5:40 p.m.

Thank you 

Hoondavan
Hoondavan Reader
12/18/18 5:00 p.m.

In reply to J1000 :

Did you ever read the articles about the GRM EP3 project?  There may be some tips on suspension in there.  If I remember correctly, they concluded the overall suspension design was a limiting factor.

https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/project-cars/2002-honda-civic-si/

J1000
J1000 New Reader
12/18/18 10:31 p.m.

Thank you for sharing, no I hadn't seen that project car yet. I have been following the MotoIQ EP3 project car and have bought a few of the parts they've installed already. I know this car is far from perfect but that just makes it more fun to try and make better. It's supposed to just be a cheap daily but now it's turning into another project car, funny how that works.

https://motoiq.com/category/projects/honda/civic-si-ep3/

Hoondavan
Hoondavan Reader
12/19/18 1:41 p.m.

Looks like you've already improved the car quite a bit...but yea, it's a slippery slope.  The E85 mod shows commitment, very cool.

J1000
J1000 New Reader
1/4/19 11:00 a.m.

I just completed a big time suspension overhaul on my EP3 this week. I picked up a set of Tein Basis coilovers locally for only $300 and decided if I am going in there I might as well do a few other things. I installed a bunch of parts that the MotoIQ article highlighted; Hardrace inverted tie rod ends, Whiteline front caster bushings, Mugen extended ball joints, and camber bolts. Right now it is just on a garage alignment, I cranked the camber bolts to max negative camber and tried to zero toe as best I could.

Inverted tie rod ends help reduce bump steer by putting the tie rod in a more horizontal position, especially when lowered.

Extended ball joints raise the roll center of the suspension for better geometry, especially when lowered.

 

Googly-eye bushings increase front caster. Left all other bushings alone as this is supposed to be a cheap daily driver and not an all out race car. Still has less than 100k miles so they're fine anyway.

 

Yes you may see I forgot the dust boot on this shock. After snapping this photo I realized it and removed the whole assembly again and put on the dust boot. Good thing these cars are easy to work on!

 

Extended lower ball joint shown here along with new sway bar end links because they always get rusted and need cut off.

 

The car rides and drives great. I am very pleased with the results already, though I still need to get an alignment. The OEM shocks and springs were harsh and would pogo down the road over bumps and it was just plain jarring. The new setup rides really well with good damping control, even over the worst roads. The steering wheel feels completely alive in my hands now, it really is a huge difference.

 

The front is a little lower than I'd like so I will be raising it to match the rear. This is how it set down on the recommended starting point, but even at this low ride height it still has lots of compliance and travel. Not a bad result for about $500 total in parts.

rezurexun
rezurexun New Reader
1/4/19 3:37 p.m.

Wow! Amazing job on your EP3! Glad I found your post as you have up-to-date content with the latest shenanigans hehe. Cheers and looking forward to plenty more updates for 2019! laugh

J1000
J1000 New Reader
1/4/19 9:36 p.m.

Thanks dude! I have some more cool things lined up just waiting on the post man :)

J1000
J1000 New Reader
1/5/19 12:22 a.m.

One more benefit I noticed with the new suspension parts; I have a tighter turning radius. If anyone has driven an EP3 you'll know the turning radius is basically a joke. My 100 series Land Cruiser can turn in a way smaller circle. To do a U-turn on a normal 2 lane road with shoulders in an EP3, it requires a 3-point turn every time and parking lots can be a pain. It truly is ridiculous. 

I think straightening out the tie rods increased the max steering angle along with the increased caster. It still can not turn as tight as a small Honda hatchback should turn, but it is noticeably better.

Vigo
Vigo UltimaDork
1/6/19 10:22 a.m.

It makes sense that moving the lower ball joint back would give you a slightly more severe steering angle. Cool effect! Cool project! 

J1000
J1000 New Reader
1/6/19 6:07 p.m.

Thanks guys! I have some camber plates coming for the front too. After I get those installed I will actually pay someone to align it.

I raised it up about 1/2 inch in the front and adjusted the toe a little more. Wow it's just getting better. Even my wife noticed it was more comfortable to ride in. Obviously the Tein pre-set measurements were off about 1/2" in the front was because of the lowered ball joints. Now I'm trying to convince my wife she needs Teins on her Mazda2.

I was going to keep this a secret until I was ready to install it but I thought I'd share early. I picked up a K20Z3 motor and trans this weekend. This is the motor from an '07 to '11 Civic Si. It is 2.0L, revs to 8500 RPM and makes over 200hp in stock configuration. After this generation the Civic Si moved to a 2.4L engine so this is the last generation of the 8000+RPM screamers. On E85 with a custom tune it should make 220+ WHP. The transmission is a 6-speed with helical LSD and one of the best Honda transmissions made from what I hear. The swap into an EP3 is pretty easy, but for now I pushed it under my workbench until my other car, a very custom turbo Miata, is up and running. I hope to swap it in in Feb or March. I only bought it because the Craigslist seller accepted my low-ball offer. This motor + trans is $4k on ebay all day long, but I got it for $1600. The '07 - '11 Si makes more sense on paper than the EP3 for about the same money, but with this swap I hope to even the playing field a little bit.

 

 

rezurexun
rezurexun New Reader
1/7/19 1:29 p.m.

In reply to J1000 :

WOW! Very very very excited for this build. It just keeps getting better with every update! That's amazing progress man!

Just an FYI, I am currently working on an EP3 that was passed down to me from my uncle. Got a few issues and maintenance items to tackle before I can start performance mods. Quick insight, current CEL is P0507. I have the dreaded RPM surge/hunt problem. Removed whole intake assembly and throttle body. Cleaned the whole thing. Reinstalled and issues still persist. Will be taking apart the IACV after work and will examine the actual motor and valve assembly. Let's see what happens.

All in all, I'm so glad I found someone with the same passion for the EP3 and putting in maximum effort. Future looks bright! Here we come 2019! :)

J1000
J1000 New Reader
1/7/19 3:12 p.m.

Very cool! You should start up a thread if you haven't yet, would love to see what you have goin on.

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