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Rymel None
2/15/12 5:09 a.m.

done laughing? cool. that said, i love this thing. it's relatively nimble considering its age, good mileage, respectable trunk space, t-top, power rear window and tiny enough to fit through tight spaces, under other car's side view mirrors, and into parking spaces no one else fits into

that said, it's got plenty of shortcomings. for it's size, it's a little hefty. the little 1.6L SOHC, while peppy, definitely lacks any kind of punch. and i don't know if it's just mine but the 5-speed hates going into neutral, and sometimes all of the other gears like to not go in as well. lastly it's FF.

with the typical honda offerings, i've got every engine available, but at a nice price. the v6s don't even clear my hood, and the K-series just barely. but at the end of all that, i've still got an FF, and will have paid upwards of 6-8k for a respectable motor all said and done. with or without go-fast goodies depending on what i get. no bueno. so i got to thinking, and obviously the thought that it deserved to be mid/rear-engine and RWD came to mind first. so after a little thinking and a lot of googling, i had a few options. the CR-V 4wd drivetrain swap is garbage. i quite enjoy my trunk space on road trips and grocery getting, so there went rear-engine. one interesting car came up on import tuner though, an EG hatch converted to straight-mount RWD using s13 240sx parts. the eg's 90% the same as my car. so it has to work. cool, i can get RWD. SR20DET? sounds GREAT.

a year passes. i go to the shop, i get talked out of it. so i back home, shelved the idea. started thinking again, and while the FR drivetrain conversion was definitely still on the table, the idea of a dinky 4-banger was looking less and less appealing. not really due to lack of power, but the prospect of getting cop's attentions while rolling past on honda blatt wasn't exactly kosher. going turbo helps with the noise, but when i'm on it (and over 3-4k rpms pretty much) they'll hear me blocks away. i live in nyc, and the phrase "just avoid the cops" is just not realistic. they just LOVE hondas. so back to the drawing board. v6s didn't fit, but i was really trying to avoid 4cyl motors. scratching my head, i took a break and focused on an s13 i'd had sitting around waiting to get worked on. we'd decided to scrap the SR20DET it came with, and make the jump to LS. L33 to be exact. i'd never looked at american motors before, so reading up on LS swaps i couldn't help but notice two things - it's really small for what it is, and that the damn thing's been put into EVERYTHING. it even fits into early cobras and miatas. so this thing HAS to fit into my bay, right? little bit of thinking and a lot of extrapolation and wild guesses with a buddy later, we decided it should fit. width-wise. we already know the firewall's gotta be replaced and the mini tunnel banged out to fit the 6-speed. the fuel tank's gotta be removed and a fuel cell installed into the spare tire well, which will be useless once i upsize my wheels anyway. for subframes i will be following the lead of the FR EG hatch, and stealing the underpinnings of an s13. the driveshaft is of course going to be custom, and probably will be ordered from the driveshaft shop when the time comes. exhaust will likely stay small, and rigged to work like a Z06 or BMW exhaust and open up a butterfly valve via vacuum hoses when i get on it.

i think that's it, but maybe you guys could give some constructive input? maybe i missed something? i'm tired of getting told 'it can't be done/not worth the trouble/money' by the honda/nissan boys, so all i've got left to turn to are the hot rodders and you crazy kids at GRM . i'm pretty sure it can be done, but i'd love some help. one thing i'm definitely worried about is the gas pedal. it sits rather close to the mini tunnel as-is, and i'm afraid i'll have to relocate it a few inches over. cuz that means i have to move the seat over as well, and there isn't much room for that. unless we bang it out towards the passenger side. but i'm keeping that in there, so...

oh, key requirements i need to keep: car must still look like a sol, if not a pos 'stock/rice' honda in general (y'know, rims and an exhaust ). full interior must be retained and cover up the work done, trimmed to fit if necessary. a double din radio is going to be installed in the cubby where the single din radio normally sits (it's been done before), so that puts a bit of a limit on just how much of the firewall can be pushed back. but even with all this, still think it can fit. there's a good few inches of wiggle room under that dash.

i also haven't decided T56 or TR6060. i've come to really appreciate smooth shifts cuz of crappy transmissions, and the 6060 improves on that. i'm just not sure it's worth the price. i also am pretty sure both trannies have shifter mount options? hoping that makes the process a little easier.

lastly, i realize this is going to be an expensive project. but i figure some smart shopping on LS motors and trannies and it's not going to be terribly more than a respectable K24-swap on this car with basic bolt-ons and coilover suspension. the way i see it, i can pay out the nose for market-inflated honda 4-banger power and still stay FF, or go for the gold and swap to FR and either end up with 4-cylinder turbo or all-out v8 LS. i wouldn't even consider a v8 if it wasn't for the simple fact it'd clear the hood, where no overhead cam motors v6 or i6 can. it just seems like it'd work better.

and before anyone says it - no, i don't want a different car. i actually like this chassis. i just hate the anemic motor

Toyman01 SuperDork
2/15/12 6:40 a.m.

Make sure you do a build thread, because I've got to see this.

JoeyM SuperDork
2/15/12 6:43 a.m.

No laughing. My stock Geo was beated by a stock Del Sol at an autocross a few years ago

RossD SuperDork
2/15/12 7:14 a.m.

Of all the places on the interwebs, and you come here with ideas for an LSx swap into a DelSol...

You'll fit in perfectly. Welcome.

DoctorBlade Dork
2/15/12 7:16 a.m.

This I've gotta see. Don't expect anyone to talk you down.

unevolved Dork
2/15/12 7:23 a.m.

Do it! Do it! Do it! Do it! Do it! Do it! Do it! Do it!

N Sperlo
N Sperlo SuperDork
2/15/12 7:25 a.m.

If you want to go Nissan (no laughing, guys who know my tastes) get an SR20DET and use that G20 transmission. There's no shame in fwd when you have that much power and that little weight.

Love to see an LSx, though.

Taiden SuperDork
2/15/12 7:26 a.m.

Stick an s13 rear subframe into your del sol
shoehorn l33
make driveshaft

93EXCivic SuperDork
2/15/12 7:29 a.m.

What year is your Del Sol? None of my Civics have ever had those transmission problems. Go for the LSx swap. I hope you have a plasma cutter and welder...

Personally I would add a turbo'ed B-series plus CRV AWD drivetrain. Trust me the Del Sol is not odd here (says the guy building a Yugo).

Taiden SuperDork
2/15/12 7:35 a.m.

also: http://www.importtuner.com/features/impp_1007_1993_honda_civic_vti/viewall.html

MadScientistMatt SuperDork
2/15/12 7:37 a.m.

This is a forum full of enablers. Allow me to post this link for inspiration.

Chocoholic New Reader
2/15/12 7:44 a.m.

Awesome! I own a del Sol as well and have always wanted to do some drivetrain conversion on it. Good luck, and definitely do a build thread.

mad_machine SuperDork
2/15/12 8:16 a.m.

I always though the del Sol was underrated. I think if people had not been expecting the second coming of the CRX, it would have been appreciated for what it is.. a fun little economy car/roadster/runabout.

Be sure to post lots of pictures of what you plan to do

ronholm Reader
2/15/12 8:18 a.m.


4cylndrfury SuperDork
2/15/12 8:25 a.m.

welcome aboard

iceracer SuperDork
2/15/12 9:22 a.m.

We have a front runner with a Delsol in our ice races.

EvanB SuperDork
2/15/12 9:39 a.m.

I know you said no CR-V drivetrain swap but this is awesome:


Luke SuperDork
2/15/12 9:40 a.m.

I like the cut of your jib!

The Del Sol is one of those cars that looks like it ought to be mid engine/RWD.

jstein77 Dork
2/15/12 9:49 a.m.
ronholm wrote: http://honda-tech.com/showthread.php?t=1266033

This is perfect. Should have come that way from the factory.

Raze SuperDork
2/15/12 10:20 a.m.

This board is where the first answer to "I want a sports car" is Miata. Some people on here can weave Biturbo, XR4Ti, and Alfa Romeo into the same sentence. Others can recite from memory the optimal suspension geometry for a Yugo. The most impressive amongst us have created a MR Wartburg, sucker-fan Corvette using tank parts, or put a Lexus V8 in a Miata, all for less than $2000.

So Sir, next time you come apologizing when mentioning Del Sol and LSx in the same sentence you should really think twice....

Chocoholic New Reader
2/15/12 10:43 a.m.
Luke wrote: The Del Sol is one of those cars that looks like it ought to be mid engine/RWD.

Tell me about it. Whenever someone doesn't know what my del Sol is I usually get a "Is this an MR2?" or something similar.

belteshazzar SuperDork
2/15/12 10:57 a.m.

we'll only give you a hard time if you DON'T do it

Taiden SuperDork
2/15/12 11:04 a.m.

Question: why haven't you started yet?

psteav Reader
2/15/12 11:56 a.m.
Chocoholic wrote:
Luke wrote: The Del Sol is one of those cars that looks like it ought to be mid engine/RWD.
Tell me about it. Whenever someone doesn't know what my del Sol is I usually get a "Is this an MR2?" or something similar.

If you're gonna go to all the trouble to put another engine in the back....why pull the one in the front?

Car and Driver built a twin engine CRX in the 80's....and of course there's the durocco. I don't think the website is up any more, but do some poking around, and look for the guy on here who goes by the handle "ansonivan".

turboswede SuperDork
2/15/12 12:14 p.m.

I'll just leave this here:


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