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Lets try it again....

2005 AWD RSX Type Any DYI.

I am attempting to write a DYI for a recent AWD swap I did in my 2005, but its is pretty hard unless you have a pretty solid fabrication knowledge/experience and an access to a shop with a lift, welder, cut off tools, sawzall etc. There is a deicent amount of cutting done to your precious DC5 so if you have some special attachment or love for it this is not for a weak or heart.
The second question as to what it will do to the value of your car….? I will be damned if I know. I picked mine up for $6000 with 97k original with a few minor issues. Used about 2 to fix it so it’s not a huge investment/loss for me but every time any car get modified to the point where the factory stuff comes out it loses value so even turbo kits and other things limit your future sales to a car enthusiast etc….
Let me add a little about myself and my ability to pull this off. I used to do everything to my cars minus the tire change or TIG welding. I used to own a 1998 Cavalier 2.2l OHV auto, then I installed Nitrous, then swapped to a 2.4L Quad 4 auto nitrous off, then added Nitrous, then turbo, then 5 speed swap. The I swapped the 2.4L quad turbo 5 speed with Ecotec 5 speed Getrag and it was nitrous at first, then turbo, then used to build Ecotec motors and built me one too then ran 11.90s on a SAFC. Got a free brand new 2006 from GM racing as a token of appreciation in 2006 with a supercharger and a trans with them knowing I will turbo it. Then my pops died and I stopped all this got married with kids so after another 5 years I get bit by a bug again. Got me a ek Civic and swap a k20 turbo in it and hydroplaned it on my way to school so then got me a 2005 rsx in July of 2013. Turboed it and this this spun tires to 100mph its was stupid. Even on slicks it spun 1st-2nd on the street and I like me some skeet racin” lol so decided to AWD it……!!!

Let’s talk AWD now.

So I read the 37 page post on the CRSX at the time and saw that people talked about this for years and that CRV would be a good candidate for a swap. I had some money and figured we could try a few parts but my biggest concern was trailing arms and the rear suspension. If I couldn’t find that to fit off a factory car I wasn’t going to make something.
I ordered rear axles, rear knuckles, rear diff, and a driveshaft off a 2004 CRV AWD. I went to mate the CRV knuckles with RSX trailing arms and it was a no go….. The knuckles also came with rear rotors and internal e-brake equipment with ABS sensors.

As you can see CRV knuckles were offset to RSX so thanks to a CRSX member I was suggested to try the whole CRV assembly including CRV trailing arms maybe Lower control Arms and bolt them on the RSX chassis. That fit like a glove!!!

CRV axles

CRV diff with an upper mount bracket.

This is why we can’t use a DC5 rear assembly in the case anymore is really wondering lol if you are you shouldn’t attempt this.

The CRV one, notice the internal e-brake assembly and a different ABS sensor location.

Rear CRV knuckle trailing arm combo first test fitment on my DC5 and at this point the project was a go!

However you have to take off a sway bar it gets in the way of rear axles and I do not know if the CRV sway fits there as I don’t really care maybe someone want to try if it will bolt on to the chassis and if the width is proper but this will be one of the very last things on my list.

No fit sway bar comes up short and the CRV one curves under the axles.

So at this point the list of parts include and all of them are off a 2002-2004 CRV awd auto or manual rear parts don’t discriminate really. Also found out that the RSX rear caliper bracket won’t fit the CRV knuckle but a CRV bracket will fit a RSX caliper lol… so just ordered CRV rear caliper brackets.
1. Trailing arms with LCAs
2. Knuckles
3. Axles 2 short ones
4. Rear diff with or without the upper bracket.
5. CRV rear caliper brackets.
6. CRV rear rotors
So granted my car is a daily driver I couldn’t just leave it at a shop and did this conversion in step like fashion and decided to mount the rear end with suspension and axles but in order to do that the gas tank had to relocated and the easiest and the most profitable thing at the time was to move it inside and make a false floor but to do a fuel cell in the future. I am not a fan of the fuel cells since you have to run loud pumps with them, they don’t use stock gas level gauge, and are more work. However for a race care this would work perfect but for me something else is in works. I am going to try to use a fuel cell with a stock sending unit and a 450lph pump custom made 12-13 gallon.
This is what we did…. Drilled a hole to use a stock fill…, used that foam to contour a new floor for that weird stock gas tank shape (home depot expanding foam) and make a false floor. I also converted to a return type fuel system at this point. I vented it outside and there is a small amount of fumes in there still but its not really that bad just half assed looking.

False floor.

All of the above mentioned parts are here so there is a pic of them.

So then the rear end was mounted with the suspension and no the AWD knuckles CANNOT be driven without axles because the rear ones have a bearing that will fall apart without the support of the axle housing that plugs into it. A few difficulties that we came across were not being able to use RSX crossdrilled rear rotors and having to use the CRV ones cause they are deeper to accommodate the internal e-brake. The ebrake was gutted without anything in there since the RSX rear caliper was used along with the cable/bracket set up in was obsolete. So either make a custom e-brake cable mounting bracket that is bolted to the caliper itself or just screw it on with 1 screw as opposed to 2. It’s on very good but the way the knuckle assembly was shaped they hit each other. It’s possible to grind down the back of the knuckle a little to get both screws in there but it’s not on my priority list. ABS is a totally different sensor so I unplugged them and took them out and don’t have the ABS now. The only way that anything with the ABS would be possible is to splice the old pig tail from the RSX on the CRV sensor and see if that works but I was told that the RSX sensor is a reluctor type picking up teeth on the back of the stock knuckle where the CRV one is a magnetic frequency one since there is nothing in the nack of the CRV knuckle so it might not work, however I will test this later as I would like to have my ABS back. One more thing to add is that since you are using a CRV trailing arm and the bottom of your rear strut essentially bolts on to the trailing arm CRV has a larger nut welded on the tab that’s on the trailing arm. In a nutshell, the RSX uses a 14mm head bolt and the CRV uses the 17mm but the larger one can’t fit through the RSX strut so just open it a little with a drill but don’t destroy your expensive strut since once you start drilling the metal inside the rubber bushing will heat up compromising the integrity of the rubber and it will rip the rubber rendering it useless. So when you drill, drill it slow and allow time to cool off. Here are some pics now………..

This is the e-brake cable caliper bracket that doesn’t like the CRV knuckle.

Funky looking RSX caliper on a CRV bracket and the rotor… it clears stock rims.

Internal e-brake garbage, gut all that crap out….

Go ahead and cut this out since the diff has to be tucked way up there to have straight axles for lowered cars specially. Patch it with some sheet metal and rivets and silicone it up. There is no way you can mount the diff high enough with this intact. If you do once the car is on the ground the axles will have a 15 degree downward turn which will increase once launching since the car squats naturally possibly causing the axle to break or slide out of the housing and cause trouble. I had to mount it twice so don’t make my mistake never broke anything tho which is a good thing.

Go ahead and cut that middle piece out since the driveshaft goes in there. It’s easy to cut it.

So at first I had a CRV rear end and it didn’t work out, it was mounted in such manner to utilize the stock rear diff mount and those bushings in the first pic. Due to some fast acceleration and launch the stock bushings are garbage and allowed the driveshaft to change a pinion angle up to 3-4 degrees which is not a huge thing just made a clunk noise. Well now I have a wagon diff and the bracket is the same shitty one as the CRV and I didn’t use it but mounted it straight up to the steal custom support mount. At this point I will not use pics of the CRV rear end since its lame and I broke it twice. I will show you some pics in the case you think You can pull of using the CRV rear end. The is no aftermarket support for it, its very small and the ring pinion contact is very shallow like ¼ inch!!! Can you say constant sheered gears. Well of you can, that’s say a pencil thin pinion shaft that is a foot long since it has to accommodate the oil pump in the rear end the clutches. Yes we broke all this after the clutches were welded so let try to keep the clutches open.?? Well it won’t hold power and it will spin front wheels a lot eventually burning them up.  Here are some pics of the CRV rear and welded/pinned clutches etc….

Initially it looked like this with 1.5 inch square steel tubing used to mount it up utilizing the stock bracket.

Then I had to stager the steel bar like this to raise it 1.5 inches.

Broken pinion shaft.

Broken ring and pinion the second diff.

Pinned welded clutches

Wagon rear which was a 3rd try and had to remount it but redid the whole mount using 1x3 tube steel and 1.5x1.5….With wagon rear end you have to use wagon axles since the inner CV housing is a bigger diameter and the spline on the axles shafts are not the same neither are the roller bearings trust me I took them apart.

If you wonder what the upper mount bar bolts on its one of the upper control arm bolts…. Just use a longer bolt. Its not welded in. Also make sure you have adjustable ride height coilovers since the CRV trailing arms are factory produced with the lower strut mounting points higher to make the CRV sit higher… so unless you want you car with a 4 inch wheel gap you need coilovers and yes there is still room to tuck the wheels on my D2s.

The rear with the adapter… I got this from EPIC Tuning in Pensylvania call and speak to John we spoke many times, a great guy and a very reasonably priced piece. It is meant to be used to merge CRV tcase to Wagon shaft so I had to machine mine different so since I am not using the CRV driveshaft any more I am not gonna talk about what was done to mine since the information is obsolete.
You also have to make a rear diff mount I did a solid one with 2 steel plates and welded it on the stock subframe but essentially I want a himejoint rear poly mount set up to change the pinion angle. Easy mount.

Its meant to be used in the front so I am telling everyone to use the wagon shaft and use this part as its supposed to be used. I will also not mention the CRV driveshaft modifications and CRV carrier bearing mount making its obsolete and the wagon is different.

Cut this out……………….lolololol I love it. Cut all the way up I don’t have a pic of it.

At first it looks like this.

Modified subframe with a CRV shaft that broke as well. Only 2 bolt mount…..

Modified stock subframe to utilize my HasSport rear mount with 1x3 tube steel but you can use an Element subframe fwd or awd 2002-2004 confirmed however you will have to use their stock rear mount which I didn’t want to do. I will get a custom made rear mount once I find one of those subframed locally I wanna make it as original as possible.

Both wagon and the CRV shafts are too long and have to be ccut and rebalanced…. So CRV ones gets cut in the rear and wagon one gets cut in the front as the rear of the wagon shaft is solid. Front needs to be reduced by 5 inches (adapter included) to the final measurement of 48.5 inches from the adapter at the tcase to the starting of the CV bearing housing that is bolted on the VC assembly.

That’s is the CV housing….. mount it by cutting out a little tabs from the 1.5 inch tube steel you will have left over an welding them on the chassis. I also welded the nuts in the tabs so I can use a common Honda 14.. bolt to hold them up. If you wonder why my front VC mount looks weird that’s because I had to modify it from the CRV config to a wagon config and didn’t feel like cutting it out.

A better pic of the tabs… they are hollow to weld the nuts naturally. No reinforcement necessary the car is thick there it will weld no problem too.

Weird looking trans tcase combo lol

All the front trans parts install with no issues but you cant rock a away bar in the front or the back not sure if the CRV ones fit yet…. My trans is 6 speed we added a TSX 6th with some internal modification. It was done my Matt Mansfield at StricklyMT in Clearwater Florida. I don’t mess with this stuff so Matt has over a decade of experience with Honda transmissions. No LSD yet…. Working on one. He would be glad to modify your transmission at an unbeatable price and modify your speed sensor if you want to do this.

So about that list from before….
1. Trailing arms with LCAs (maybe can use RSX ones haven’t tried they look the same.
2. Knuckles
3. Axles 2 short ones for CRV set up, 2 long ones for wagon.
4. Rear diff with or without the upper bracket.
5. CRV rear caliper brackets.
6. CRV rear rotors
7. Remount the fuel tank inside or a fuel cell.
8. Gut the ebrake
9. Get a wagon driveshaft assembly or have a custom one made direct drive.
10. Mount the VC or a carrier bearing if custom.
11. Shorten the driveshaft and balance.
12. Cut the spare tire well for the diff.
13. Cut the tunnel for the shaft.
14. Mod the stock subframe or use an element one.
15. Mod your trans to a 6 speed or leave it alone.
16. Take off both sway bars try CRV ones I haven’t tried. Let me know lol
17. Get the adapter from Epic Tunning.
18. Make a new tunnel using a tunnel off a EG Civic and make a new ebrake handle bracket it sits low if you wanna rock a center console.

If you choose not to use a VC from a wagon and go with a direct drive shaft you will have a horrible humming since the output driveshaft revolutions do not match the rear diff revs per tire rotation so use 2 sizes tires smaller in the back something like 245/55 in the front and 225/55 in the back… or 1 size like 245/55 in the front and 235s in the back but run them about 10psi less air to compensate. If you don’t do this the rear diff will pre load by 5 inches of circumference destroying it ever so prematurely. If this is a daily driver you have to find a VC since the solid drive is so unfriendly and makes chips and pops and shit it’s pretty hard on everything. Race car is a different story.
I guess the difference between the wagon stuff and the CRV is pretty big. CRV/wagon/common ½ ton GM truck shaft slip and spline type.

This was my old tunnel more so a patch and this is a new EG one.

The things left over for me to do is:
1. aluminum exhaust since I am open DP now,
2. mount the center console,
3. Weld a spare VC to help launch,
4. launch the shit out of it, see if the axles hold and if not get some made by DSS the inside CV housing spline is a common D series inner housing spline and its confirmed. I think that the FWD inner CV housing might be a little bigger (the actual cup itself) to accommodate for bigger CV bearings. The outter CV housing is a 25-26 Honda spline outter might be factory on an EF or something. Same on CRV and Wagon so it has to be found elsewhere!! So DSS should have these parts in stock with no issues just measure the back of the knuckle bearing to the diff and send them the axle housings…. They will find something. Priced at $900-$950 already called them.
5. Do a fuel cell with a 450 pump currently 255.
6. Figure out the ABS if possible.
7. Element subframe with a custom rear mount.
8. Remount the rear diff mount exposing the rear diff from behind is its covered by a low sitting rear subframe.
9. Change my front trans gear ration and run OBX straight cut 1-2 with LSD.
10. Change to a Twin disk from a Stage 5 Comp currently running.
11. More power built motor I guess
12. See what happens with the tcase but I heard it holds 1.6s no problem.
13. Other crap in the future IDK.
Might as how the car launches with an open VC….?? Well it spins fronts a little if you come off a 2 step hard but from any roll down to 5 mph it makes a 11 sec street pass on street tires all day long. Riding the clutch works as well. VC is engaged all the time a little only and it engages more once the shock is sensed…. Look up Non Newtonian Fluids and how the fluid inside solidifies upon a hard shock.
Surely if you wanna beast and wanna spin all 4 you need a welded VC or a direct drive driveshaft. Will you break axles? Maybe…. Probably. I think I covered most of the stuff I am going to keep an open VC for daily and a welded one for track its 4 bolts to take it off the mounts and 8 to disconnect from the front the rear shaft so it’s a cake since I go to track no so often. VC is a Viscous Coupler assembly that allows for a difference in front and rear tire spin just like the front differential allows front left and right and rear differential rear left right. Was it worth it???
Well when you pull up next to an early 2010s Porsche 911 Twin with 335s in the back and rear motor and you both take off just as hard on the street with you on 235/215s and the car does 3 sec 0-60 and the owner has no clue wtf is going on I think its well worth it. Most of the play is on the street and I don’t promote it, very small amount is on the track….. So I have a street car capable of a good acceleration with street tires that’s fun as hell.

Special thanks to CRSX members: nbleak21, blackndecker, Agent Smith, K20A2.
My boy Matt Mansfield at Strickly MT, Clearwater Florida.
Vedran at Vedran’s Automotive, Seminole Florida.
Japdata Tunning Tampa Florida.
Dependable Driveshaft Clearwater Florida.
Ismael Reyez His house 
Brian Humlichek at Unlimited CNC, Oldsmar Florida.
John at Epic Tunning.
and myself…

Oh and I almost forgot this last picture.
give you my upmost respect and props on your build. even tho i cant see the pics on here i found your ig, mine is tato_built and i just followed you and fell in love with your car. i joined this group just to see your car. i currently own a ep3 making over 600hp. i do all my own work as well , just last night i was thinking of what to do to it over the winter, and awd came to my mind. started googling info on crvs and somehow this writeup came up. since im new here any reason why i cant see the pics of your build process? would you mind if i send you a private message asking some questions thanks in advance

2 Posts
So, the front right axle and rear diff blew up the other day... replaced the front axle, pulled a new diff from an 02 CRV, slapped that in, and now it appears that power is only going to the front wheels. It used to really grab the road before, but now when you start slamming gears the front spins like crazy and it pulls to the right pretty hard. Any thoughts?? Everything is the same, except the new diff and axle up front

1,284 Posts
Also, its an 03 RSX with an 02 CRV rear diff not an 05 RSX with an 04 crv rear diff
How is your fluid level? Is the rear diff making any noises?

I believe that the 02 Crv rear diff functions a certain way.. From my understanding, the rear diff will engage when there is not enough traction in the rear. Therefore, IF your rear diff is not engaging, it could mean you have plenty of traction in back and the diff won't engage until it passes that threshold.

That or your tires are bald up front.

1 Posts
Hello all, read through this to get an idea of what i may be looking into.
Literally just picked up an 02 rsx on trade for a frontier i had that i wasnt using. The pictures arent working as a few others have said. I was thinking of getting into a 3gste toyota awd swap. Im sure more work would be required but i cant imagine anyone having done it yet. Ill be researching to see what, If anything i can find. Any points in the right direction would be appreciated. Thanks!
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