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Old 07-15-2009   #1  
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Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

well the thread title might get people excited but its kinda misleading. Today i officially did my first REAL na mods. Ive had an axleback exhaust and k&n fipkII intake for a few years along with other basic bolt ons. short shifter blah blah blah but none of that stuff does any good. So just by chance i got a great deal that brought me into the NA game.

my car: 2001 LX non-vtec coupe
my mods: acura 1.7EL vtec head (just an a2 head), ported and polished, crower stage 1 cam, apexi afc neo

my afc neo settings vtec low to high at 3800rpms high to low: ?

my initial impressions: Car was completely different. I tried the swap but everything on my car was messed since its got 200k kms on it and has never been rebuilt. Got a shop to do the swap for me so vtec wasnt wired up for the ride home. I was fairly disappointed the car did not perform that well without the vtec. low end it was great hp and torque were definitely a lot better. anything above 4500rpms was a joke. then the vtec came and car got a personality disorder. once the vtec kicks in car is nuts. not k20 nuts but definitly much faster than the stock lx i was used to. I just picked up an 02 rsx base auto and i'd say my civic is just as fast. Where i was really impressed was the amount of torque gains i had. It seemed like i got a massive amount of mid and high end torque. Im assuming a lot of this is due to the fact that im still using stock LX header and stock exhaust till the muffler.

stage 1 cam info: it is worth it! its half the cost of the stage 2 cuz of no valvetrain upgrade necessary and it runs awesome on stock tune. idle is a bit choppy at times and my afc reads it idling at around 600 which is way lower than it was idling before. It acts like it wants to die out after u rev it up and let the revs fall but it never does. launches are great. vtec feels great. its just a great feeling cam for a daily driver. will post a clip of the sound and stuff tomorrow because it does sound different.

the future: so this is my start but this build is far from over. I want to know opinions from people on where to go next. I want to know if my tune i have now is safe enough that engine will not detonate or something lol. I am thinking future mods are kamikaze header, custom midpipe with magnaflow high flow cat if possible, cam gear to advance timing at least 2 degrees (please comment on this), light weight flywheel and stage 1 exedy clutch.

please leave all feedback ideas etc im really excited about htis build
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Old 07-15-2009   #2  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

Skip the header and hi flow cat and pick up a race header. Its about the same price as the hi flow cat alone, and the kamakazi header is discontinued and only works with LX stock exhaust- which is pointless because its a pea shooter exhaust. You'd need an ex catback to run a race header OR get custom piping from the end of the race header to the axelback.

AND FYI- the EX header flows much better then the LX header which is a just short of a glorified log manifold style. Your ports are bigger with the pnp so your engine is breathing better- your exhaust is the bottle neck now.
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Old 07-15-2009   #3  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

well i read kamikazi gave best gains and if i can find one cheap enough it'll be the same price as a used race header and getting the bpipe made. and ya i'd just get a midpipe made that goes from the kamikaze to to my axleback. I really dont wanna get a race header cuz of cost and converting it to ex exhaust and worring about sensor wires and stuff. i only know of 2 race headers and neither of them are really in my price range
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Old 07-15-2009   #4  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

search craigslist. i got a DCRH for 20 dollars just needed some sand and paint and some thermal wrap. Honestly, if your not going to be using the car at the track at all. I'd maybe get a C&F upgrade, maybe to a 9lb flywheel (but not less on that engine). The honda mid pipe isn't going to net you a ton of gains, even with a cam on it. Its just going to be droning and miserable.

Think of it this way. You ever read the book "if you give a mouse a cookie" when you were a kid? That's how it works with these things. The more you build, the more equipment you have to maintain. Exhausts are great and they sound awesome and all ya, but driving around with it in your ear all the time? for 3 peak whp? not my cup of tea. I'd get the cam gear and call it a day personally. Anything else you get for that car is not going to get you much in the power department.

Instead, i'd spend the money on suspension (if you don't have it already) and brakes.

I'm not trying to be a dick and shower diarrhea on your parade. Im glad you like the new set up. happy motoring
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Old 07-15-2009   #5  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

look up gearbox, hes a 7th gen guy and knows his ****.

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Old 07-16-2009   #6  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

Well, a race header used will be like ~300-350 for one in great shape, and cheaper the crappier it is. Then you get some flanges and bring them to an exhaust shop and have them make a pipe to connect between your axel back and race header. Thats all you gotta do. You do need to pick up an exhaust extension cable however, which is 20 bucks. If your going to upgrade the cam and head with a pnp job, you need to do the exhaust justice. I love my DCRH.
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Old 07-16-2009   #7  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

if im getting exhaust work done anyways does anybody know if a d16 racing header will work
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Old 07-16-2009   #8  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

Nope, the manifold bolt style is different.
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Old 07-16-2009   #9  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

but do you see what i mean? one mod needs two three or four supporting mods. then those need two or three... my header came with the flanges and all it did was bolt up. Im using a stock gsr cat back with a resonated test pipe and the dc header and its stock quiet. picks up and goes though
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Old 07-16-2009   #10  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuG9vuxdbp0

thanks for all the great info guys. heres a vid of my car just mostly for sound and i guess u can kinda see what the car looks like. huge sound difference from what it was before. wish there was some way to prove how much faster it is but just gotta take my word for now.
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Old 07-16-2009   #11  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

well it sounds like your making your way good luck with the build.
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Old 07-16-2009   #12  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

Quote:
Exhausts are great and they sound awesome and all ya, but driving around with it in your ear all the time? for 3 peak whp?
The in your ear part is what muffler you choose, there are plenty of mild high flowing mufflers out there. I also agree with Triz the exhaust sounds like a bottleneck, the more hp you make the more an exhaust makes the difference. With what he has now it might not be all that beneficial but if he keeps building like he plans, it will be.
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I really dont wanna get a race header cuz of cost and converting it to ex exhaust and worring about sensor wires and stuff. i only know of 2 race headers and neither of them are really in my price range
Ok you plan on building further yet you are worried about sensors that a $50 wire kit and and 2 spark plug defoulers can fix.... Really? you are either lazy or have no self confidence. Also you just dropped some $$$ to have a shop do a head swap, pnp, cam install, and you are whining about the cost of a header? For real?
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Old 07-16-2009   #13  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

Your video seems pretty useless to me, do one of you driving and lets see how it pulls.
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Old 07-17-2009   #14  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

Lets keep it positive... I think it'll be pretty cool if you keep going with the build.
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Old 07-17-2009   #15  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

I watched that rubix cube shindig... wow. thats a little next level. I just pull the stickers off and switch em around.
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Old 07-17-2009   #16  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

ya the video was pretty crappy but i wanted people to know what it idled and sounded like all i could find is stage 2 and 3. I didnt drop as much into this setup as one may think since i bought everything as a package off someone. I'm on a crazy budget with this car. I like the idea of the kamikaze header because it gives good gains and its an LX header so i can just swap my stock one back on before i do emissions
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Old 07-17-2009   #17  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

O ok I hear ya. Anyways I'm still interested in a video of you driving it and maybe a fly-by. Like you said there isn't a video of the stage 1 cam yet. Have you figured out the change in mpg yet on this new cam?
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Old 07-17-2009   #18  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

well just got the car back on wednesday i filled up on gas today and drove 150km and still on full so i'd say it hasnt changed a whole lot. im expecting to drop from 45mpg to 40 on regular. im gonna try plus and premium to see what happens both power and milage wise. im super crazy about calculating milage so i should have an idea of how it will affect it. I'll try and make a vid of my gauges like tach and spedo of me doing vtec pulls and then another of me just flyin by. lets just say my car isnt going to beat a civic with any type of swap and its not a v8 killer, prolly not even a v6 killer but its a hell of a lot of fun to drive! And i challenge anyone to find an engine mod that is this inexpensive that will yield a car thats as fun to drive as mine. Plus its way faster than it was with just the lx head!
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Old 07-18-2009   #19  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

update i hate my life. milage sucks now and im losing coolant somehow. Im not seeing where its leaking from but i went from but i went from being over the max line to being under the max line. also normally i can gas up the car and go 180kms before it moves off full and im down by an eighth after 150. any ideas of where the hell all my coolant is going. i know its only like 2 ounces but still im not seeing where its coming from. there was minor seepage around the thermostat housing since i didnt replace that gasket but its stopped now and i just dont see any leaking hoses so where the hell is it all going?
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Old 07-19-2009   #20  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

It could be getting burnt up
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Old 07-19-2009   #21  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

Well, if you did the head swap then there are a bunch of different places the coolant could be coming from if its not getting burned... what sections are wet?
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Old 07-20-2009   #22  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

well nothing seems wet. i know that the thermostat housing was leaking a little bit right after and my mechanic blamed it on me for being too cheap to get a new gasket but it stopped and now nothing seems wet at all. my oil seems to be fine too. Like i had my car parked in the garage all friday-sunday and there was no coolant on the floor but like last night it took it out and drove it a bit hard and there was a little bit lower coolant level but not a huge drop possibly no drop at all. it seems like any time its hot out and i do vtec pulls my coolant drops a bit. is this a sign my engine is getting hot? could i just be burning coolant? what steps can i take to solve this problem. i drove to work today with vtec set at 4300 so it didnt kick in on every shift vs before it was at 3700 (i know thats way too low) and it appeared i lost none today. also my milage seems to be evening out. again its just the high rpm vtec pulls that are killin everything.
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Old 07-20-2009   #23  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

well nothing seems wet. i know that the thermostat housing was leaking a little bit right after and my mechanic blamed it on me for being too cheap to get a new gasket but it stopped and now nothing seems wet at all. my oil seems to be fine too. Like i had my car parked in the garage all friday-sunday and there was no coolant on the floor but like last night it took it out and drove it a bit hard and there was a little bit lower coolant level but not a huge drop possibly no drop at all. it seems like any time its hot out and i do vtec pulls my coolant drops a bit. is this a sign my engine is getting hot? could i just be burning coolant? what steps can i take to solve this problem. i drove to work today with vtec set at 4300 so it didnt kick in on every shift vs before it was at 3700 (i know thats way too low) and it appeared i lost none today. also my milage seems to be evening out. again its just the high rpm vtec pulls that are killin everything.
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Old 07-21-2009   #24  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

Heres what I'd do...
Top your coolant and clean your engine up so you can visibly see any spots if anything leaks.. then set vtec at 7k (if it allows you, so you absolutely stay out of vtec) and park over fresh sheets of cardboard everywhere you go. Do that for upwards a week of driving, dont just keep your car parked, and make sure no coolant disappears, and if it does- you can narrow your problem down to burning coolant when not in vtec.

.... NOW, if no coolant has disappeared, then set vtec to something lower and do your pulls... still keep a clean engine bay and park over carboard to see if anything drops. If the level hasnt changed after a week of doing this, recycle your cardboard and go for a drive to pick some ladies up in your LX vtec vic that doesnt lose coolant.
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Old 07-21-2009   #25  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

the SOHCs don't have shitty cam seals like the B series do they? It was a mini me swap you did right? was everything swapped correctly? You may have a hose somewhere it shouldn't be if your used a different manifold. Did you top off the coolant the right way with the car running and get all the air out? I know im jumping in at the tail end of this whole shindig but i figured i'd get the obvious out of the way.

also keep in mind if you are in vtec frequently your mileage is going to suck *********.

Me
avoid vtec 37-42 mpg.

VTEC constantly 25-32.

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Old 07-21-2009   #26  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

thanks man and ya its a minime swap. just the head was changed. only thing was my coolant housing gasket wasnt changed but it appears that its sealed. idk if everything had filled up. i drove it for 2 days and then i noticed that the coolant level in the resivoir had dropped. i drove it yesterday and today to work and no change in level so idk it appears nothing has changed. i turned my vtec down to 4300 and i have only hit it once and my fuel gauge has finally started to calm down. i'll keep updating what i find with milage and coolant problems

ok heres my next question. what is my ecu doing right now? i read that theres a chance of running a bit lean with a pnp job and new cam but i thought thats what obdII was good for. So id just like a quick explanation of what my o2 sensor and ecu are doing. this is the way i am assuming it works. more flow and increased air intake from pnp and cam shows up as a leaner air/fuel mix in the o2 sensor. o2 sensor tells ecu ecu says it needs more fuel and dumps more fuel in. is that rite? or does ecu just dump the same amount of fuel in no matter what? if this is so why is my milage decreased?
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Old 07-21-2009   #27  
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

thanks man and ya its a minime swap. just the head was changed. only thing was my coolant housing gasket wasnt changed but it appears that its sealed. idk if everything had filled up. i drove it for 2 days and then i noticed that the coolant level in the resivoir had dropped. i drove it yesterday and today to work and no change in level so idk it appears nothing has changed. i turned my vtec down to 4300 and i have only hit it once and my fuel gauge has finally started to calm down. i'll keep updating what i find with milage and coolant problems

ok heres my next question. what is my ecu doing right now? i read that theres a chance of running a bit lean with a pnp job and new cam but i thought thats what obdII was good for. So id just like a quick explanation of what my o2 sensor and ecu are doing. this is the way i am assuming it works. more flow and increased air intake from pnp and cam shows up as a leaner air/fuel mix in the o2 sensor. o2 sensor tells ecu ecu says it needs more fuel and dumps more fuel in. is that rite? or does ecu just dump the same amount of fuel in no matter what? if this is so why is my milage decreased?
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Re: Joined the NA game OFFICIALLY! NA info inside

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamis33 View Post
thanks man and ya its a minime swap. just the head was changed. only thing was my coolant housing gasket wasnt changed but it appears that its sealed. idk if everything had filled up. i drove it for 2 days and then i noticed that the coolant level in the resivoir had dropped. i drove it yesterday and today to work and no change in level so idk it appears nothing has changed. i turned my vtec down to 4300 and i have only hit it once and my fuel gauge has finally started to calm down. i'll keep updating what i find with milage and coolant problems

ok heres my next question. what is my ecu doing right now? i read that theres a chance of running a bit lean with a pnp job and new cam but i thought thats what obdII was good for. So id just like a quick explanation of what my o2 sensor and ecu are doing. this is the way i am assuming it works. more flow and increased air intake from pnp and cam shows up as a leaner air/fuel mix in the o2 sensor. o2 sensor tells ecu ecu says it needs more fuel and dumps more fuel in. is that rite? or does ecu just dump the same amount of fuel in no matter what? if this is so why is my milage decreased?
for your coolant issues try starting the car up with the rad cap off and top it off. Wait until the fan kicks on (thermostat opens) and you should see coolant go down. Add more coolant and you hsould see air bubbles come up. Keep doing this until the coolant no longer goes down and no more air bubbles come up. That might help.

as for decreased fuel.... the o2 is sensing more air in the exhaust so the ecu compensates with more fuel. it shouldn't be a major amount, most often times the reason why fuel economy decreases is a heavier foot....
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Old 07-22-2009   #29  
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ok heres my next question. what is my ecu doing right now? i read that theres a chance of running a bit lean with a pnp job and new cam but i thought thats what obdII was good for. So id just like a quick explanation of what my o2 sensor and ecu are doing. this is the way i am assuming it works. more flow and increased air intake from pnp and cam shows up as a leaner air/fuel mix in the o2 sensor. o2 sensor tells ecu ecu says it needs more fuel and dumps more fuel in. is that rite? or does ecu just dump the same amount of fuel in no matter what? if this is so why is my milage decreased?
Idk how much more air your pnp and new cam profile lets in, but if it is significant enough the o2 sensor will adjust because the exhaust gases will not be at the right temp suggesting you are either too lean or too rich. Unless you have a wideband and in that case it will actually read the air to fuel ratio. Anyways you have an afc neo which allows you to adjust the fuel curve on your own instead of relying on your factory ecu to adjust to non oem spec modifications. Also you just put a cam in and you expect the car to run like it did before? You just changed the dynamics of your engine: how it flows, valve lift, the amount of fuel it lets in etc... it is not going to run as well. Another thing to think about, your modification might not require your vehicle to run on 91 octane. Stock civics do not run any better on 91 as they do on 87 octane they aren't designed for 91. All you did was put on a new head and cam you didn't up the compression in each cylinder so there is no need for a fuel with a higher activation energy. Just some things to consider. Also you might want to run an injector cleaner, lucas makes a good one. It will clean up carbon deposits and help with fuel delivery.
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Old 07-22-2009   #30  
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Ok thanks. I guess myreal question is if I need to get a wideband and tune the afc or if my stock ecu is updating my fuel enough that I'm not going to run lean. Also I read that with a pnp head timing should be advanced
at least 2 degrees maybe 4. Is this a good idea. I don't have gear yet but can get one if necessary
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