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Broke Teenager
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59 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So I've been doing a lot of reading on head swaps and VTEC Killer setups and decided that I would like to build the K20A3 a bit. I know the best option would be to just swap engines but that's out of budget unfortunately. I know that I will need KPro and I plan on getting a new intake manifold and throttle body etc.. My car already has a 60mm catback, DCRH and CAI. So what do you guys think is best setup? I've been looking into a full K20A2 head swap as well as the K24A1 head swap. Is it worth swapping to a K24A1 head and running VTEC Killer instead of on the A3 head? Or just performance cams on K24 head?

Also I'm aware of the drawbacks to VTEC Killer setups. Sorry for all the questions, I just want to figure out what will give me the best bang for my buck!

Thanks a lot in advance!
 

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Howie I'm gonna piggyback on this thread/bookmark it cause I'm in the same boat. GL with your build.

/drawbacks to vtec killer setups? Mind sharing?
 

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Broke Teenager
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59 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Well since you're running on the high cam all the time you get a real lopey idle (which I don't mind) as well as having little power below around 3000 rpm. Also your fuel economy will be worse, but I think it's worth it to get some pretty impressive gains
 

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search... you will find these options:

-stage 2 cams, valve springs, and a tune (probably the best bang for your buck, if you don't want to swap)

-k24a1 head with stage 2 cams, valve springs and a tune(this will give you decent power, as the k24a1 head flows amazingly, but swapping a head on a motor that is in your car is a real PIA)

-http://forums.clubrsx.com/showthread.php?t=818160&highlight=k20a2+cams+k20a3(a2 cams & rockers will give you decent power but our motor isn't really meant to handle the high rpms needed with this option)

-swapping a k20a2 head, with the k20a3 low compression and ep3 crappy oil pump, doesn't fair well

No matter what you will need kpro, valve springs, and a new chain tensioner if you mess with the cams. I highly recommend you stay away from vtec killer unless you are going turbo or a fully built k24. Just be careful because the ep3 k20a3 motor doesn't have the type-s oil pump like the rsx k20a3, so anything over the low 7000rpms is pushing your limits. Also as you probably know the ep3 k20a3 has a bad flowing head, unbalanced crank, and non forged internals. These are the ep3 k20a3 motors weak points. Some will say lack of oil squirters is another, but I find that this is a varied opinion. All this means the motor is very susceptible to going boom.

Swapping in a k24a1 with bolt-ons, IMO, is the best bang for your buck solution.(Keep in mind you can sell your long block after the swap and get $300-$500 back depending on mileage and condition of your motor)
 

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Broke Teenager
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59 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
search... you will find these options:

-stage 2 cams, valve springs, and a tune (probably the best bang for your buck, if you don't want to swap)

-k24a1 head with stage 2 cams, valve springs and a tune(this will give you decent power, as the k24a1 head flows amazingly, but swapping a head on a motor that is in your car is a real PIA)

-http://forums.clubrsx.com/showthread.php?t=818160&highlight=k20a2+cams+k20a3(a2 cams & rockers will give you decent power but our motor isn't really meant to handle the high rpms needed with this option)

-swapping a k20a2 head, with the k20a3 low compression and ep3 crappy oil pump, doesn't fair well



No matter what you will need kpro, valve springs, and a new chain tensioner if you mess with the cams. I highly recommend you stay away from vtec killer unless you are going turbo or a fully built k24. Just be careful because the ep3 k20a3 motor doesn't have the type-s oil pump like the rsx k20a3, so anything over the low 7000rpms is pushing your limits. Also as you probably know the ep3 k20a3 has a bad flowing head, unbalanced crank, and non forged internals. These are the ep3 k20a3 motors weak points. Some will say lack of oil squirters is another, but I find that this is a varied opinion. All this means the motor is very susceptible to going boom.

Swapping in a k24a1 with bolt-ons, IMO, is the best bang for your buck solution.(Keep in mind you can sell your long block after the swap and get $300-$500 back depending on mileage and condition of your motor)
Well that all makes sense to me, and I've seen K24a1's going pretty cheap. Out of curiosity, what would it cost to have one put in (I mean in terms of labour and any extra bits I would need)? I know engine swaps are a complicated process but how hard is it to do one at home? I have someone that could help out as well as a good range of tools and I'm pretty confident working on the car.

Thanks for the reply!
 

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Well that all makes sense to me, and I've seen K24a1's going pretty cheap. Out of curiosity, what would it cost to have one put in (I mean in terms of labour and any extra bits I would need)? I know engine swaps are a complicated process but how hard is it to do one at home? I have someone that could help out as well as a good range of tools and I'm pretty confident working on the car.

Thanks for the reply!

Glad to make light of your situation. In reality it depends on the help you have and how experienced / determined / technically inclined you are. I could bang out a swap by myself in a day or two. If I had help I could probably get it done in less than a day, but I am a mechanic. I have no idea the price on a swap, really that depends on the shop you go to and their experience with Honda / Acura / K-series motors. There is no reason you can't do it yourself or with a buddy or two in a weekend as long as you are fully prepped before you tackle it.

Research k24 swap in ep3, there are tons of threads on what you need. A motor cost depends on mileage and where you buy it from. It should generally cost you $1,000 to $1,500 depending on what you replace / need with the swap. It's best to buy the motor, do what you need to it and then swap it on a weekend. You can buy or rent an engine crane (maybe a engine stand too if you want). Really you just need the engine crane and a Honda pulley removal tool, besides normal 6 & 12 pt. sockets ranging from 6mm up to mid 20's and a breaker bar or two and maybe a torque wrench. Also realize it's probably best to swap the chain and tensioner and lash the valves before doing the swap. I believe you should swap the k20a2 oil pump and pan on the k24 but I'm not 100%. Like I said there are a lot of write ups on a k24 swap, read till your eyes are bleeding and then you are ready. Please don't read till your eyes actually bleed, that would be bad :2thumbs:
 

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Broke Teenager
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59 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Glad to make light of your situation. In reality it depends on the help you have and how experienced / determined / technically inclined you are. I could bang out a swap by myself in a day or two. If I had help I could probably get it done in less than a day, but I am a mechanic. I have no idea the price on a swap, really that depends on the shop you go to and their experience with Honda / Acura / K-series motors. There is no reason you can't do it yourself or with a buddy or two in a weekend as long as you are fully prepped before you tackle it.



Research k24 swap in ep3, there are tons of threads on what you need. A motor cost depends on mileage and where you buy it from. It should generally cost you $1,000 to $1,500 depending on what you replace / need with the swap. It's best to buy the motor, do what you need to it and then swap it on a weekend. You can buy or rent an engine crane (maybe a engine stand too if you want). Really you just need the engine crane and a Honda pulley removal tool, besides normal 6 & 12 pt. sockets ranging from 6mm up to mid 20's and a breaker bar or two and maybe a torque wrench. Also realize it's probably best to swap the chain and tensioner and lash the valves before doing the swap. I believe you should swap the k20a2 oil pump and pan on the k24 but I'm not 100%. Like I said there are a lot of write ups on a k24 swap, read till your eyes are bleeding and then you are ready. Please don't read till your eyes actually bleed, that would be bad :2thumbs:
Awesome man thanks for sharing some knowledge! :thumbsup: still not sure what direction I want to take with the car but you've certainly cleared some things up for me
 

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I would recommend that you check out a flipped pin build. It might be right down your alley. The hp of a vtec killer but you retain the mpg and mid range power. I think the thread below has some info about it. Find where Ba82Ep3 starts commenting. He can direct you to better info and he is quite the wizard. Pretty slick and good for all K series. I want to do this some day.

http://www.k20a.org/forum/showthread.php?t=66643
 

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Broke Teenager
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59 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
I would recommend that you check out a flipped pin build. It might be right down your alley. The hp of a vtec killer but you retain the mpg and mid range power. I think the thread below has some info about it. Find where Ba82Ep3 starts commenting. He can direct you to better info and he is quite the wizard. Pretty slick and good for all K series. I want to do this some day.

http://www.k20a.org/forum/showthread.php?t=66643
I've been looking into this setup as well and it seems like the best way to make cheap power with the a3.. I can't track down the rocker assemblies though, I've only been able to find whole cylinder heads.. where do people get them from? Part outs?
 

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I have this setup, been running it for over 2 years...still goin strong...I can't seem to break the a3 block @ 8500 redline...u do need to upgrade valve train and I went with oem s2000...any other help on setup should u decide to pursue lemme know would love to help a fellow member out.
 

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Broke Teenager
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Discussion Starter #11
I have this setup, been running it for over 2 years...still goin strong...I can't seem to break the a3 block @ 8500 redline...u do need to upgrade valve train and I went with oem s2000...any other help on setup should u decide to pursue lemme know would love to help a fellow member out.
Which setup exactly? Flipped pin or full vtec killer? Also I didn't think it was absolutely necessary to upgrade the valvetrain but i could be wrong. Thanks for the input man
 

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Full vtec killer. I would upgrade the valvetrain because to get the most out of the cams you need to rev above 7k-8200 which isn't healthy for a3 valvetrain...I've had my setup for over 2 yrs dd...put the right parts and it will last...the a3 isn't as soft as people say...they probably did something wrong...or my a3 is abnormal.


Which setup exactly? Flipped pin or full vtec killer? Also I didn't think it was absolutely necessary to upgrade the valvetrain but i could be wrong. Thanks for the input man
 

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Broke Teenager
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Discussion Starter #13
Full vtec killer. I would upgrade the valvetrain because to get the most out of the cams you need to rev above 7k-8200 which isn't healthy for a3 valvetrain...I've had my setup for over 2 yrs dd...put the right parts and it will last...the a3 isn't as soft as people say...they probably did something wrong...or my a3 is abnormal.
Ok awesome man! I really want to do a boosted setup and I feel like this would be a great addition to some forced induction
 

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ride height Nazi
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