Tech/Tool life how to do a leak down test on your S2000

First and foremost…..still working on video skills. I just made a short and sweet video!

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I didn’t take too many pictures of the actually process since I was also shooting video…. I put to the test my new OTC LeakDown Tester from amazon. I’ve used a few OTC products in the past and have always liked them!

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Don’t forget to set your Air Compressor to 90PSI

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Another shot of the OTC kit…

I will update this post one day when I do another leak down! in the meantime watch the video!

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Tech/Tool life: Easiest way to remove a S2000 Crank Pulley Bolt

I’m still here! Been looking for a new job for a bit so that takes all my energy away from S2ks.  I recently got a spare F20C from a friend that money shifted at the track and dropped some valves….

Below are some pictures of the carnage:Lisle 77080 19mm-4

Lisle 77080 19mm-5 Lisle 77080 19mm-6

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Luckily some of the parts I can reuse, like the Cam Holders, Cams, Rockers, and Crankshaft…..

I broke the engine down and got to the dreaded crankshaft bolt. I’ve taken this bolt off of numerous s2ks over the years, and I always end up using my Special Honda Crank pulley holder on a breaker bar with a cheater bar and another breaker bar with a cheater with a normal 19mm socket with another person. Even then it still requires a ton of muscle and the bolt always seem to break loose after I feel like the breaker bar is gonna snap in half.

 Lisle 77080 19mm

Picture of the Lisle unit next to a normal 19mm deep socket….

I thought to myself, there has to be an easier way…. so eventually I found this socket on amazon, the Lisle 77080. It’s basically a super thick 19mm socket. Using this socket is like using a bigger hammer! It’s so big it doesn’t fit into the Honda Crank Holder tool.

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With a normal 19mm socket, bluepoint 400ft/lb airgun and my air compressor maxed out to 150psi, the crank pulley bolt would not budge at all. But with this socket it came off like nothing. See my video above for a better explanation… I’m not sponsored, but I can’t recommend this enough, it will really make your life easier.

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The dreaded bolt…..

Final thoughts, this socket is rad, I will buy another one for my LS430 when I do my timing belt which requires a 22mm version and maybe a 17mm version if I start working on older hondas. This would of worked with my Subaru STi too…. If you are an Honda S2000 owner, I can’t recommend you enough adding this into your tool collection.

10/10 would recommend for S2k Owner

Tech/Parts Review: S2000 TRD Door Stabilizer.

I’m a big JDM fanboi, nothing new about that.  Being the JDM fanboy I am, I’m constantly searching  the web for new JDM tuning developments regarding the S2000.  I’ve looked through my HyperRev issues front to back more times than I can remember.  I couldn’t help to notice that many JDM tuners use parts that we, the USDM tuning scene, simply haven’t thought of yet.  Such as racing sized AC condensers that Stradale uses, which are half sized AC condensers so the radiator can receive better cooling while driving. A few USDM tuners take these “unheard of” JDM ideas are turn them into “original ideas” *ahem ahem *Ballade Sports *SakeBomb Garage… yeah those Ohlins lower perches or RX8 rear calipers are real original ideas dudes……

An item of tuning I noticed that a few JDM tuners are implementing is the TRD Door stabilizers retrofitted to work with the Honda S2000.  TRD, is obviously a Toyota branch (some would say the Mugen of Toyota (kidding not kidding)), so this is made for Toyota models like the BRZ/FRS/GT86.  This one in particular is the one not made for the BRZ but for every other Toyota model such as the Altezza, Celica, AE86….. model number MS304-00001. This would actually fit my Lexus LS430 daily driver.


All the way from Toyota Technocraft!


Unboxing of the TRD door stabilizers

All laid out….. On a Toyota/Lexus vehicle, all you have to do is bolt in and you’re off to the races…..

There are many ways of mounting the TRD Door Stabilizers to the S2000. I personally went with the CSOhara kit, or Creative Service Ohara. I found their products listed in my Hyper Rev Magazine and checked out their website. I used an importer to import me the kit. The Kit comes with instructions completely in Japanese. My Japanese is horrible, but it comes with pictures and you can find walkthroughs of people installing the kit on Minkara. I added links on the bottom of the page if you wanted to see how other people installed the door stabilizers not using the CSO bracket.


The instructions……

What the CSO kit comes with, two brackets, some allen head bolts, rivets, and stickers to cover the holes.  I think why there is coins taped to the paper is because my importer overpaid, and they are giving me the difference.

To prep everything, remove the OEM S2k door hinge.  Unscrew the pillips head bolts attaching the OEM bracket, use an impact screw driver since those puppies are on tight! A few whacks and I was able to get this off, it would definitely suck to strip those phillips head screws!


Close look at the TRD stabilizer kit.

The brackets….


First, you have to smash the raised portion of bolt hole on the TRD door stabilizer bracket, you want to make this as flush as possible.



Next you rivet the TRD door stabilizer bracket into the bracket from CSOhara.

After you rivet the bracket on, you have to flip it around and grind down the rivet so it is flush with the CSOhara bracket since this sits flush on your door.

Test mount!

Bolt in the CSOhara bracket to the S2000 Door with the supplied allen Head bolts…..



Attach the stickers  to cover up the bolt holes and slide on the plastic TRD door stabilizer pieces. Should look something like this when installed, I didn’t put the stickers on to cover the bolt holes.

Screw in the TRD Door stabilizer on the chassis side using the OEM honda screws.

Close the door and pray!  For some reason I was able to get the passenger side of my car to be flush, while the driver’s side intrudes a bit.  I might be because my car was involved in a hit and run on that driver’s side years ago….. After the install I notice my doors have a much louder thunk when shutting the door than before, a much more solid feeling.  As of driving dynamics wise, I feel that the car is stiffer, but it could all be in my head…..


The last picture I have of my S2k before it was parted out….. The best things about cars is that you can always come back…. maybe one day.  Sooner than later

Checkout these links of people on Mikara that installed the TRD door stabilizers on their S2000!

http://minkara.carview.co.jp/userid/2159608/car/1661832/3115806/note.aspx

http://minkara.carview.co.jp/userid/306830/car/200949/3091767/note.aspx

http://minkara.carview.co.jp/userid/1278993/car/942593/6990829/parts.aspx

http://minkara.carview.co.jp/userid/611808/car/1232388/3086656/note.aspx

 

Tech: S2000 Variable Intermittent Wipers

Tech: S2000 Variable Intermittent Wipers

One thing that has always irritated me about the S2000 is that the wipers only work in three settings. A predefined INT, Low, and High, but sometimes that INT setting isn’t enough, especially when you are stuck in that awkward area where it is raining, but is raining too little for Low setting and too much for the INT setting….. Most cars come with a variable INT setting from the factory , my Subaru has it, my Lexus has it, heck even most Hondas have it. I will have to admit, this mod is pretty much useless for me since I live in Southern California now, where it rarely rains, and even when it does rain it lasts around 30 minutes, yep, 30 whole minutes….. this is no Florida.


Being the S2000 Otaku I am, I feel like there is nothing new about the S2000 I could possibly learn, but I was sadly mistaken after I read this FINAL SPEC magazine from Japan. FINAL SPEC is a badass magazine, it is different than Hyperrev because this issue focuses more on restoring S2000 than outright Modifications and in detail!


In the magazine, Spoon featured an article detailing what to look out for with S2ks as they age and what can be done to an AP1 model to modernize it.  I have personally done most of what they recommended in this red box, AP2 headlights, Ap2 Tailights, Ap2 Center console, but what is this?! Honda Access Variable wipers?  I never knew these even existed.  At first, I thought they came standard on Ap2s in Japan, but after looking through a few websites and photos, this was not the case….


After some intense searching, I found out that they are in fact a Honda Optional item, from their Honda Access line.  Intrigued, I found a part number and put an order in…..


A few weeks later this item arrived at my doorstep. The box came with the wipers, a harness plug, and a sheet of black stickers….. I’ll explain more on that towards the end of the post.


Obviously, there is one major hurdle preventing me from using this out of the box.  The Wipers in Japan are on the left-hand side, while in the USA our cars have the wiper on the right side.  The pinout looks the same but mirrored compared to the US version, I verified this with my Multimeter using the US factory service manual tests.  So what made the Variable Intermittent function tick?


It seems like the circuitry that controls the variable delay is on this board.  Prior to purchasing this unit, I researched day and night for other Honda models that have similar looking Wiper stalks with variable delay thinking I could possibly retrofit it for my S2k.  Most US honda models that use a direct input for the wipers, not via CANbus, have a central multiplexer that controls the variable delay……


One thing I noticed about the JDM Variable Intermittent Wipers is that the wiper stalk has a two pin wire.


After opening up the unit, you can see how there is a circuit board integrated and that the wiper contacts are on the opposite side.


Even the pins are flip-flopped upside down.


The US S2k wiper connections on the left and the JDM unit on the right.  You can see how it is different due to the orientation of where the wiper stalk sits.


After some desoldering, I was able to remove the JDM Variable Intermittent Wiper control board from the housing.


After even more research, I found that the 2003-2005 Honda Civic EX came with a Variable Intermittent Wiper stalk that looks identical to the JDM unit, but on the correct right hand side.  The pinout on this civic unit is identical to an S2k, but has 2 extra pins for the Variable intermittent wiper circuit.

I don’t have any pictures of the process of me wiring the JDM Wiper control board to the 2003 EX civic unit, but it is self-explanatory once you look the jdm unit over with a multimeter.  After days of cursing and inhaling enough solder for a lifetime, I finally merged the JDM control board with a USDM S2000 Wiper Housing using 2003 Honda Civic EX Wiper Stalk….. Did you know the windows and the wipers run on the same 20A fuse?  I found that out the hard way.


This is from a Japanese website I found online.  Remember that sheet of black sticker that came with the wipers.



According to the Japanese instructions, after installation of the JDM Variable Intermittent Wipers unit, you have to remove the 7.5A Fuse “FR WIPER AUTO STOP SIGNAL” since the control board is taking this function now.



And now it’s gone!


This is what I love about JDM tuning.  The Meticulous attention to detail, since the fuse is not in use anymore, they provide you this black tape block it out the description on the fuse panel.


No more!


This is what it looks like after I got everything buttoned up and tested.  Everything works perfectly.


The wiper sits slightly higher than the turn signal stalk.

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This is expected. In the JDM Modulo catalogue it mentions that after you install the Honda Access Variable Intermittent Wipers, the wipers will sit higher than the turn signal stalks.  I suspect that the Wiper Stalk Arm is also from the Honda Parts Bin….


With the steering wheel on…..

You guys might be wondering why I have a hole in my center console where the roof button used to be.  I recently sold my harddog roll bar and put my interior back in.  I used to have my accessory power socket here, but it has since been moved back to the glove box. …. I’ll figure out a way to fill it soon. 

 

Parts Review: Toda A2 CamShaft

First post of 2016!

There isn’t much information online regarding Toda Camshafts or camshafts for the S2000 in general. They are different schools of thoughts, some people believe the s2k engine is so finely tuned that adding aftermarket camshafts will in fact reduce performance and another school of thought where enthusiasts think camshafts will net performance gains, but no one has figured out the magical formula yet. They are a few companies that promise a revolutionary camshaft that will be out “soon” and change the game on S2k camshafts, but nothing has come to fruition so far….at least within the past 7-8 years I’ve been in the S2k game.

I’ve always had a trust in Toda Racing Products. It is a company that has the engineering resources and know-how to build Super GT engines, Formula 3 spec Honda engines, and even their own in house Engine. They are THE F20c engine parts supplier in Japan, all the top s2k tuning shops run their engines, like Arvou, ASM, Toshi from I heart s2k, and M&M racing……

After dealing with aftermarket manufactures that make products for many different makes and models i.e my Jenvey ITBs… things fit but it’s never 100% and it’s always just a bit off….I find the fit and finish of the Japanese tuning companies to be spot on. They tend not to do a one size fits all approach to manufacturing their parts, but rather make sure that the part fits and function like OEM.

A long long while back, like a whileeeeee back I bought these Toda A2 Cams in not so great condition for a great deal…..I already have Toda Valve springs installed so I thought why not…..

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As you can see, the bearing surfaces on the Camshafts have a lot to be desired…

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It looks like there was a low oil situation which caused some bearing scoring…..

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I grabbed a micrometer and made sure everything is within spec

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It took some searching, but I finally found a shop that can refurbish camshafts….
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I had these camshafts refurbished by Nikos over at SVM Camshafts….

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They look as good as new after he was done with them!

After I got the camshaft back from Nikos, I decided to have them WPC treated to further reduce friction so this doesn’t happen again.

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Here is what they look like after I got the camshafts WPC treated! The WPC treatment gives the metal a milky luster.

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Oh yeahhhhhhhh…….

I didn’t stop there. Since I had most of the valvetrain apart, I decided to WPC treat the the Cam Holders and Caps, Rocker Shafts, and vtec rocker Pins….

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Everything in my Super JDM JUN box to go to WPC in Torrance…..

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Working in an apartment ain’t easy

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A few days later I picked this up, all WPC treated.

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That Yummy Milky WPC luster…

Now that everything is WPC treated, next step is to mill down the Exhaust Camshaft Valve Rocker followers since it will interfere with the Toda cams. I noticed that most manufactures that make somewhat aggressive cams for the S2000 do this, I looked at a build inline pro did and they did the same to their exhaust rockers.

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Here is the spec sheet from Toda recommending where to mill.

It took me all day with an electric harbor freight die grinder and a carbide bit, I asked a few shops around if they could do it for me such as Evasive, Ballade, and other popular S2k shops around here, but they all wanted absurd prices, like $1000+…..

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I tried to tape off the roller bearings so materials don’t get in….

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After 8 hours of grinding, this is my finished product! I can see why they wanted so much in labor. I tried looking for a machine shop that was willing to do this for me, but they didn’t seem confident in the task.

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I installed everything, torqued it all down to spec, and did a valve adjustment. I went for a quick run, I noticed my exhaust sounds much more aggressive in the mid range, definitely has a nice Bark to it. My friend Areen with the Spoon’d out S2k noticed my exhaust sounds much deeper than his ASM 70mm….but then again my exhaust is the titanium version too….. I feel like my car has a slightly better mid range, but it could all be in my head. The Toda A2 Cams don’t require a tune and can run on the standard ECU like my car….. I’ll post a driving video if I ever get a chance to let you guys hear!

DIY: Cigarette lighter relocation

Quick mod I did today. I relocated my Cigarette lighter to my center console. I removed the rear bulkhead awhile back so I just had the plug hanging around on the harness. I think it looks a lot cleaner this way and pretty much just slides right in. All I did was remove my roof switch, since I don’t have a soft top anymore, slide the plug into with a bit of force and extend the harness. Looks OEM and great!

Hondata Kpro with RSX Wideband Update

When I had my car running on ITBs, it was running super rich, this probably lead to the demise of my RSX wideband sensor which is not working anymore, but all my other sensors are working perfectly, i.e ECT, Gas, and Etc.  I’m not giving up on the rsx wideband yet!  I took apart my kpro, and found this surprise:

 

Just lik eon the s2ki kpro thread, the A1 is jumped to D8 to ground out the extra voltage.  Hondata denied preforming this mod, I guess when I sent my ecu in to get repaired, they went ahead and did this for me without me asking.  Hopefully my wideband still works, I’m going to go ahead and re-do my wiring, and go back to the original diagram, with all new wires, connectors, and minimal solder.

 

I’ll keep you guys updated!

Pick Up: Mugen Seat Rail

My Mugen Seat rail came in recently.  The Mugen seat rail are a thing of beauty, it’s very light, and the mechanism to move the seat back and forth feel exactly like OEM.  The downfall unfortunately is that it only fits perfect with Mugen seats.  With the Recaro SPG seat, it is a too narrow, I had to use washers to make my seat fit, I’m currently researching other spacers to make the seat fit correctly and look decent.

 

The OEM seat bracket fits perfectly!

 

Tech/Review: RSX wideband with Hondata kpro

I’ve had my Hondata Kpro for my s2000 for awhile now. I went with kpro because my car can be ODBII compliant with my ITBs.  No other EMS will allow me to do so. I rate Kpro about 6/10.

This is my grading breakdown:

The Pros:

ODBII compliant
Read engine codes via kpro
User friendly software
Properly updated and maintained

The Cons:

No Wideband! Even though we are using an RSX ecu and have the option for PRB maps
No support for using a RSX wideband
Expensive
Requires additional hardware
ECT readings are funny when car is started up

On S2ki, a user “JustinC”, gave us a wiring diagram allowing us to use a RSX wideband with PRB maps. This allows us to use many features in Kpro we were not able to use with the stock o2 sensor, such as lean cut. This is the wiring diagram he provided:

I wired everything up and its been working well for the most part. Rarely, I get an engine light when I start up my car, saying that the o2 sensor cannot be read. Recently some members with new Kpro unit have been frying their ECUs with this wideband installed.  Hondata blames us, because we are wiring up an unsupported device. A user, “hybridsol”  is trying to remedy this and make improvements to the original diagram, adding a fuse from the 20A battery feed and adding a coil on the relay. I also utilized these changes with my kpro. Unfortunately, even with those improvements his ecu fried. Upon further investigation, it turns out that the ground on the ecu cannot handle the load when the heater is switched on and off. He suggested another diagram to remedy this problem. This is the remedy he is suggesting:

I am going to try this when I get back home from Boston. I’ll keep you guys posted!!!!