First Drive!!

First Drive!!

Man, time flies! Though this update is long overdue, the wait was definitely worth it!

Head Assembly

After taking the head to the machine shop, they found that a few intake valves were not seating properly. This likely contributed to the low compression on Cylinders 1 and 2. They went ahead and replaced the valves and resurfaced the head.

With the head off the car, I took the time to replace parts that would normally be hard to reach (considering the lack of space). With this, I replaced the water connecting pipe and thermostat housing to minimize the amount of coolant outlets. Less moving parts = Less failures!

Once I got the head back, I replaced the head gasket, set the valve lash, and reinstalled the cams, timing belt, etc. Also, though the car will stay stock, I went ahead and bought some ARP head studs just in case I have to re-do this entire thing again sometime in the future. Finally, I installed the Autometer water temperature sender since the Honda sender was giving me false readings.

The whole head assembly was such a pain for my first time, but I definitely learned a lot!

Throttle Pedal

Man, I can’t tell you how worried/anxious I was about the throttle pedal because of what I read online and such. It actually ended up being fairly straight forward.

Since my car was originally Right-hand drive, I had to order a Left Hand Drive throttle pedal (which mounted with existing, pre-drilled holes) and I used a LHD SPi Mini throttle cable. This particular cable had the exact fittings for the Skunk2 throttle body and the Mini pedal. Though it was a little longer than expected, I fixed this by shortening the OEM Honda throttle body cable bracket.


New Carpet

Though it seems easy, this was actually a pain because the carpet was not pre-cut from the vendor 🙁 –Overall, it was straightforward to lay everything out, but it just took quite a bit of time to cut everything to fit haha.

Front Windshield / Windscreen

SUCH A PAIN!!! Im so glad I will rarely have to do the windscreen job. All I can say is the special windscreen tool does help tremendously, but still expect to have your hands hurt like hell after the job is over. BUT I DID IT!

Custom Dashboard

Since the original dashboard was for a RHD vehicle, I had to get a new setup for LHD. However, I did not want to order the expensive dashboards then have to hack it up to fit the Autometer gauges. I ended up ordering a fiberglass dashboard that was least expensive from MiniSport USA.

I ordered some indicator lights from Amazon for the following: turn signals, alternator, oil pressure, high beam, and Check Engine. Then ,I ordered some carbon fiber vinyl wrap to throw over the dashboard to give it some contrast with the interior.

Extended Shifter

Once I installed the seats, I needed to adjust the driver positioning. However, I noticed the shifter was REALLY low to the floor, and it was awkward to shift. After looking it up, this is fairly common with the VTEC Mini build, so I just ordered a shifter extender from Amazon. This was actually very worth it!



Problem: Lower Radiator Hose

After the first drive, my wife noticed the tires were rubbing along the fender wall when turning. After looking further into this, I noticed that a full left turn lock would also cause the tire to rub against the lower radiator hose. I will have to look into this and see how to I clear some space.


Next Time

At this point, I think all that’s left to do is: alignment, custom exhaust, some engine tuning, and of course, the little cosmetic bits, such as doors, flares, and a buff. I did notice that the brakes seem to have some air in the lines (even after hours of bleeding), so I am going to pull the assembly as see what is going on. With the assembly out, I am going to re-do the interior portion with 3 AN fittings to make the install cleaner because I am a little unhappy with how the hardlines look in the car and such.

Until next time!




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