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Discussion Starter · #1,961 ·
Lol! Nope, it wasn't a matter of planning ahead for the eventual radiator install.
It was more a result of the 2 pieces having come separately from Honda, and I just bolted them together rather than welded them since it was definitely the easier way to go. It just happened to work out when it came time for this radiator. I was able to simply unbolt the 2 parts and I was done!

When I was picking up the radiator at Rywire, Ryan showed me a CRX he was working on at the time which, obviously, was running one of these radiators. He ended up cutting off the vertical part of the t-bar then welded a small bracket to the top of the radiator and bolted them together to add a little support. It's a pretty cool idea. If I ever switch to a fiberglass hood and utilize Aerocatch latches, maybe I'll do a custom t-bar piece and tie it into the radiator like Ryan did.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,962 ·
I was getting close to wrapping up this round of projects. Just needed to bleed the brakes, then I could finally get the CRX off of the jackstands. I had gone around the car a few times, no more bubbles, fluid was looking good. On the last turn of the wrench, on the last caliper....SNAP! I busted the bleed valve on one of the Wilwood front calipers!

If you're familiar with these type of calipers, they utilize a 2-piece bleed valve...with a tiny bleed valve within a larger brass fitting. I gather that this is so that you're not constantly loosening/tightening the bleed valve directly in the fragile threads of the aluminum caliper. Of course, it does make bleeding a little bit more of a hassle, since it now takes 2 wrenches to do it properly. Anyway...the walls of the brass part are fairly thin, and it didn't take much torque (only using a 1/4" wrench on this) before it sheared off, leaving a portion of the brass fitting lodged within the caliper.

I wasn't able to dislodge the piece from the caliper, so I removed the caliper entirely and dropped it off at my brother's shop. He was able to remove it, but now there were little bits of metal within the caliper insides. Combined with the fact that the caliper pistons looked like they had some wearing on them, we decided that the caliper was going to need a re-build. Easy enough, but it all the parts were going to add up to just slightly less than the cost of just getting a brand new caliper. So that's what I did.

Here is the new caliper:
(You can see how the bleed valve is a 2-piece design)


And here it is installed:


Once I got that installed, I was able to re-bleed the system (using Motul RBF600), and finally get the CRX back on the ground, for the first time since September!


 

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Very nice, though black is so :zzz: . :)

Did you look at their custom color options? Their prices are nuts; I'd be amazed if anyone used that service.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,964 ·
Thanks! Yeah, your color combo turned out pretty well! It's a bit more exciting than mine! lol
I had chosen black back when I first installed the Wilwoods back in 2012. I ordered them through Fastbrakes and had no idea of the custom color options. (Not that I would have wanted to spring for that anyway! lol) So yeah, the options were either red or black, and I was looking to keep it a little more subtle.

When I was replacing this caliper last month, I did notice the swatch of custom colors. It was tempting for sure. But I was only replacing one caliper, so it didn't make a lot of sense.

Do you know what the actual up-charge for the custom colors is?
From a quick look through JHP, it looks like the DPHA kit in red/black is $450, and the DPHA kit in Competition Blue (one of the custom colors) is $600. So about $75 per caliper premium. Is that about right?
 

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They quoted me like $500 I think for the custom colors (lime green was my fav!), if memory serves.

You're right - JHPUSA has the $150 extra for competition blue - maybe that's a trial balloon by WW to see what the market is like? Not sure what's going on there.

But the place that did the center hats on mine does calipers all the time, and I don't think it would cost more than $200 for a pair in a fully custom color, though I didn't price them out. Red worked for me, especially since it's free. :rofl:
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,966 ·
I assume that $500 was in addition the price of the calipers? The calipers alone are about $500 for the pair (Well, for the Dynapro's that I'm running at least.)

Lime green would be pretty cool. For me, I would have been interested in either that Competition Blue or Competition Orange.

Your $200 estimate does sound a lot easier to stomach, though free is always better! lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,968 ·
Thanks man! And thanks for the kind words on Facebook. :)b

But yeah, I picked it up as a birthday present to myself in July 2009. Definitely the longest I've ever owned a particular vehicle.

With almost 12 years with this CRX, 6 years with my previous white one, and a couple years with my red one before that....I've been driving CRX's for about 2 decades! lol

Now I guess it's time to update this thread with all the stuff I've been posting on IG.....
 

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nihkon said:
Thanks man! And thanks for the kind words on Facebook. :)b

With almost 12 years with this CRX, 6 years with my previous white one, and a couple years with my red one before that....I've been driving CRX's for about 2 decades! lol

Now I guess it's time to update this thread with all the stuff I've been posting on IG.....
In response to these items above...

You're welcome! :)b

You have lots of experience with the car and many of us remember the former white one, which means we're OLD...ugh!
You ever keep tabs on the white one?

Yes, it's time for an update on the forum for us old people! LOL.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,971 ·
Baker said:
In response to these items above...

You're welcome! :)b

You have lots of experience with the car and many of us remember the former white one, which means we're OLD...ugh!
You ever keep tabs on the white one?

Yes, it's time for an update on the forum for us old people! LOL.
As for my old white CRX....the guy who bought it from me didn't have much of an online presence (at least back then), and this was before texting photos was a thing (what was that about being old? lol), so I wasn't able to keep up on it as much as I'd have liked. I did find a couple random pictures online in the year or so after selling it. It was completely gutted, getting prepped for a paint job and a k-swap if I recall. I think it was in good hands, but it would certainly be cool to hear how it's been!

Coincidentally enough...the person who I bought it from back in the early 2000's just emailed me recently to check up on it! lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,972 ·
Baker said:
Yes, it's time for an update on the forum for us old people! LOL.
synergy10 said:
Patiently waiting for a ton of updates! :woot:
Ok ok...they probably won't come quickly...but I'll try to get some more updates here.

So it looks like I left this thread hanging right when stuff was starting to get interesting. I had been in a mad rush to get all the engine bolt-ons completed in order to make it to make it to a track event last December (2019.) The last thing holding me up was the brake caliper issue that I posted about up above. The weeks leading up to the event were like in the car shows on TV...with lots of late nights, cramming to get everything done. 2 days before the event....rain hit SoCal and the event was cancelled. It turned out that it was kind of a blessing, as I developed some sort of engine-related electrical issues. (I can't recall exactly what those issues were now though.)

Anyone that knows me knows that diagnosing issues aren't my strong-suit. I can bolt **** on and off all day long. But sometimes with certain types off issues, I just draw a blank. This ended up being one of those times. I was fed up with the old wiring in the engine bay, and I decided it was time to rip it out, and start clean with a nice new engine harness. So I called Ryan at Rywire and ordered one of his milspec engine harnesses.




In these photos you can really see the difference between the oem engine harness and the Rywire engine harness:

 

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Discussion Starter · #1,973 ·
With the oem engine harness removed from the car already, installing the new Rywire engine harness should have been a 20 minute job. Well, that's never the case, right?
It turned out that the subharness to connect the engine harness to the chassis/ecu didn't have any place to connect to my car.

2 owners ago, the car went through a lot of wiring modifications. Lots of custom alarm stuff, custom audio stuff, and the chassis was hard-wired for OBD1 to pass BAR (this was well before off-the-shelf ecu adapters were available.)
Don't get me wrong, he did a hell of a job with his wiring. Some pretty trick stuff here and there. But there was absolutely no way in hell that I'd be able to chase down all the modifications he made in order to connect the new engine harness. So....it was time to start from scratch! I spent the new couple of weekends tearing out every... single....oem wire from the CRX. From the headlights all the way back to the tail lights. It wall came out. What a freakin' mess!



Here you can see some of the cool alarm wiring that was done previously.


And the big ass mess of wiring from the CRX. Not just from under the dash....but every wire in the car. I was finally able to get the heater core removed since I had the dash out anyway. (If you recall, I removed the heater hoses from the engine in one of the previous updates.) Of course, all the air ducts were removed as well.



And here is how the interior looked at that point. Lots of room for activities!

 

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Discussion Starter · #1,974 ·
With a bit of vacuuming, the interior was looking pretty decent.

Now I had to get the new chassis wiring figured out. So it was once again time to call up Ryan at Rywire. To be continued.....


 

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Discussion Starter · #1,975 ·
So I made another call to Ryan at Rywire to get my hands on one of is PDM setups. For those that aren't familiar with these systems, PDM stands for power distribution module. It's basically the hub for all the power in your car. It eliminates physical fuses in favor of "digital" fuses. This particular module has 12 inputs/outputs. Inputs are basically anything that's giving a signals to the PDM....whether its a physical switch for something like headlights & taillights, or digital signals from sensors like water temp., etc. The outputs are what you'd expect....signals going out to things like the lights, fans, fuel pump, etc.
It integrates with the ECU, the engine harness, and every other electrical device in the car.

It seemed like as good a time as any to upgrade the ECU. I went with the Hondata S300 v3...mostly because it was so much cheaper than the AEM Infinity unit. lol Since I had gone this far already, I figured I might as well convert to coil-on-plug while I'm at it. So I picked up the Hondata CPR kit. Rywire was able to modify my engine harness that I picked up from him previously to integrate the Hondata CPR wiring. He also hard-wired the CPR wiring into my distributor as well.

Here are a couple pictures of all the items for this project:


Here you can see the PDM unit, a breaker, Hondata CP, and the modified distributor:


The P28 with Hondata installed, and a clear "Hondata" ecu cover from HA Motorsports.


Billet distributor cover from Locash, Rywire coil-on-plug plate, OEM coils


The distributor, after I hit it with a wire-wheel brush


Close-up of the Rywire coil-on-plug plate


The engine harness after being modified for the coil-on-plug wiring



Here is the wiring that is part of the Rywire PDM setup. This is what's replacing all the oem wiring in the CRX. There are separate sub-harnesses for the front of the car (headlights, front turn signals, radiator fans, horns), rear of the car (tail lights, rear turn signals, reverse lights, fuel pump), dash (gauge cluster, ignition, headlight/turn signal switches), and to connect to the ECU. I had Ryan take it a step further than what comes in his typical setup. Instead of running a switch-panel for things like main power/ignition/headlights/turn signals...I had him wire it so that I can retain the use of the keyed ignition and the stock light switches on the steering stalk. You can see the ignition switch in the photo. This was modified as well.

Since these PDM systems are really meant to be for racecar applications, they are limited in how much they control. There are zero creature comforts. No wiring for dome lights, clock, cigarette lighter, etc. Just the basics to keep the car functioning. I'll have to add my own circuits for things like aftermarket gauges and my power windows.


Depending on which coil-on-plug setup you use, the oem distributor sometimes gets eliminated. With the Hondata CPR kit, it still uses the distributor to provide information to the controller (cam position I believe?) Since the distributor doesn't need to fully function as it would in stock form, things like the ignitor can be removed.

Here is a picture of the inside of the distributor:



And with the Locash billet cover installed.

 

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Discussion Starter · #1,976 ·
With engine bay wiring getting tidied up/hidden, more things are exposed and in the open. Things that you didn't really notice before all of a sudden are an eyesore. The starter was one of them. So it was time to disassemble it, clean it, and give it a fresh coat of paint, and new hardware from Downstar.



 

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Discussion Starter · #1,977 ·
Here is a quick shot from when I first started mocking up the CPR bits on the engine:



Since the car had been down for a while (and was going to be down for a long time still), I picked up a cheap set of car dollies from Harbor Freight so that I can move the car around in the Garage. It was actually easy enough for me to move the car around on my own.

 

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Discussion Starter · #1,978 ·
Here is the engine harness pulled through a hole in the firewall. I'm using the hole that the heater hoses used to go through. This keep the harness mostly hidden under the intake manifold. And yes, I'll be adding a grommet.



The next step was to figure out what to do with all the various electronics. I decided to make a panel that everything mounts to under the dash. Of course, the first step is a cardboard mockup:


Then I transferred that design onto a sheet of abs plastic:


Then I added some riv-nuts to the abs:


And everything bolted down:


Then I cut out some areas for the wires to pass through to the rear of the panel:


And the final layout:
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,979 ·
With all of the fancy Rywire wires in the car, some of the other wires were getting jealous. So I gave them the same treatment using Raychem DR-25 and custom yellow labels. I made various custom ground wires, and also the power cables for the ECU panel. I de-pinned the reverse switch sensor on the trans as well as the radiator fan wires, then wrapped it in Raychem and yellow labels as well.






 

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Discussion Starter · #1,980 ·
I knew that I wanted to mount all the electronics to a panel under the dash. But I didn't have a clear plan for how to mount it. I had assumed that I would cantilever threaded studs horizontally off the firewall, and kinda "hang" the ecu panel from that. My brother came over to brainstorm ideas with me, and we came up with the foundation for what became what you see in the photos below. His idea was simple....mount it from the top/bottom instead of from the back.

So once again I broke out the cardboard to start mocking up some ideas.



Then slightly more technical cardboard versions:



Then I transferred my ideas into a Sketchup model:


I sent my Sketchup file to my buddy Jesus (JustJesus here on CRX Community), and he 3D printed the brackets for me. Just a couple things to note: 1..I designed the brackets as 2 bolt-together pieces due to the limitations in printing size, 2..There are various colors in the pieces since this was a test project for both of us. Testing the brackets for me, and testing different printer filaments for him.
I designed it so that the bolts are recessed so that they fit flush behind the electronics. You'll notice that the 3D printed brackets are cut up a bit. My cardboard angles ended up being a little off, so I had to take the Dremel to the brackets so I can adjust the angles.






Overall, it was a fun process. While the 3D printed brackets are stronger than I thought they would be, I'm not sure if I'd want to trust them to the rigors of driving/track days...especially with a stiff suspension. My end goal is to take this design and have the brackets fabricated out of aluminum.
 
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