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B16A Engine Swap








Well, this is what got me started thinking about a swap...yes that is a 5 gallon bucket of oil, and yes that is my favorite little car...the D15 goes through about a quart every 250 miles or so.  Luckily, there isn't a cloud of blue smoke following me, but I don't think the enigne is going to run forever with this rate of oil consumption...maybe so?  At first it was kind of neat...I saved all the oil from the oil changes in my other cars and dumped it in the CRX...saved me a trip to the auto parts store to recycle it.  I burnt through that in about 6 months and started trying to get rid of this oil that was in the basement of the house I moved into.  It's actually diesel engine oil, but what the heck...it's probably designed for harsher conditions than gas engine oil!  I will be sad to see the D15 go, though...means I'll have to start changing oil again!


Here is the jewel!  It's a B16A with automatic tranny!  Almost nobody runs these, but I figured since the DX is an auto, it would be easier to drop in an auto...I'm not so sure now.  But, I'm not done yet so only time will tell.  I've got the "B" pretty well stripped down in the photo.  I wanted to have a good look inside before the initial start up.


Here we are half way through the homemade wiring harness build-up.  What a mess, huh?!?  Being too cheap to go out and buy a harness, I decided that since the ECU had about 10 inches of wire and the motor had two main bundles of wire still attached, I could just link up wires between the two.  The major problem is that I only had two colors of wire black and yellow/green so I made sure to double check every wire before soldering it in place!  I must have done pretty good because once I got everything hooked up, I squirted just a bit of starting fluid in the manifold, hit the starter and the engine immediately roared to life and settled into a smooth idle (with a big cloud of smoke from the tablespoon of oil I put in each cylinder to loosen 'er up before starting).  Now that I know I have a running engine/ECU I plan to do a little more tune-up work before the install...plugs, wires, distributor, belts, hoses, timing belt, oil pan/valve cover gaskets, etc.  I don't plan to hot-rod the hell out of this engine or tweak it 'till it runs like shit, so hopefully it will have a long and happy life!  About the only thing I would like to add is a header to get rid of that chunky cast iron manifold front and my pipes that go under the engine are a bit beat, too.

   (click for larger images)

Here are a couple of reference shots of the old "D".  You'll see that even though the engine is carbureted with a minimum of computer control, the eninge is a maze of vacuum tubing and boxes...essentially a computer using vacuum signals instead of electricity!  All of this tubing will be gone with the "B" replaced by simple wires and 1980's computing technology.  My plan is to basically cut and cap all of the wires currently running to the engine except for the alternator.  The "B" will run completely stand-alone off it's own computer.  This is a clean sheet approach as I will not try to convert the current wiring harness.