Boost at Last, Boost at Last, Boost at Last
» 91-octane, 1.8-liters and 402WHP Civic
Jeren Walker had a dream that one day he would own a turbocharged Honda. Last month, we caught a glimpse of his “oh so JDM” ’93 Civic hatchback in the “Turbo System Checklist”. This month, we follow up on the project and see just how far this Civic has come thanks to the addition of the PeakBoost turbocharger system, an A’PEX Power FC, an A’PEX Integration boost-up kit, a set of RC Engineering 1000cc/min injectors and a Walbro 255 liter-per-hour in-tank fuel pump. Before the Boost
When serious amounts of horsepower are going to be made on a regular basis, it’s important to have an engine that provides a solid foundation. For this project, the B18C engine block was treated to a complete machining makeover that included a set of Darton sleeves. The new ductile-iron cylinders were honed to accept a set of 81.5mm forged JE pistons. These JE Pistons are manufactured from 2618 aluminum alloy for the ultimate in strength. The flat-top design of these pistons provides a 9.5-to-1 compression ratio with the B16A cylinder head and Cometic 1.5mm gasket combination. A set of Crower steel connecting rods make the connection between the pistons and the crankshaft. The crankshaft is friendly to its bearings thanks to the addition of a Fluidampr balancer.
On the top side, the B16A cylinder head has been fitted with Ferrea valves, Eibach springs and Crower retainers. A mild port and polish was performed by KG Engineering on the cylinder head while a precision valve job was executed by Benson’s Performance Machine. A set of BLOX Type-A camshafts and a BLOX intake manifold complete the engine modifications.
Instead of a complete bolt-on kit that relies on some supplementary fuel system, we elected to provide our own engine management solution. To generate horsepower, it’s no secret that you need to have an adequate supply of fuel. Our solution would be both simple and effective. Starting from the tank, we installed a Walbro 255 liter-per-hour pump. This pump pushes the fuel through the stock lines and fuel rail. Pressure in the fuel rail is regulated by the original Honda fuel pressure regulator (we’re not crazy; the Honda regulator is the same part used on 600-horsepower Mercury Marine big-block engines). A set of four 1000cc/min RC Engineering fuel injectors are cycled by an A’PEX Power FC (Full Computer) plug-and-play engine management system. The A’PEX Power FC computer plugs into the factory harness (using an adapter harness on ODB-1 and OBD-0 vehciles) and uses all of the original sensors. Since we elected to “go turbo” on this Honda, we opted for the A’PEX Integration “boost-up” kit. This kit not only includes a boost-control solenoid, it also include a 3.0kg/cm2 map sensor that lets the Power FC read boost levels up to 28psi. In addition to two 20×20 maps for fuel control (one map for VTEC-off, one for VTEC-on), the Power FC also has a 20×20 map for ignition control. The VTEC activation point can also be optimized through the Power FC and the FC Commander. When teamed with an FC Datalogit the full power of the Power FC can be unlocked as datalogging and a PC interface can be realized.
For the turbocharger and intercooler system we selected a PeakBoost Turbo System from cheapturbos.com. For those interested in a complete kit or the pieces to put together the kit, cheapturbos.com also offers the PeakBoost components a la carte. The PeakBoost kit is designed to fit 92-00 Honda Civics or 94-01 Acura Integras. The PeakBoost system uses a heavy-gauge (8-gauge) stainless steel tubular exhaust manifold that incorporates an equal length design. The equal length tubes tie into a four-in-one collector that flanges to a T3 flange. This flange supports the T3/T04E-hyrbid turbocharger. The turbo header collector is also home to a Tial 38mm wastegate (with 6psi spring). To provide a low-restriction path for exhaust gases, a 3-inch stainless steel downpipe is included with a stainless steel flex coupling. On the charge air side, TIG-welded 2.5-inch intercooler plumbing directs airflow to the PWR 24x6x3.5-inch intercooler that sends chilled air to the engine. To provide a smooth transition out of boost, a TiAL blow-off valve is included. Some of the less exciting but just as important pieces included in the kit are a 12-inch slimline electric fan, stainless oil feed and oil drain lines with Earl’s fittings, all necessary gaskets and hose clamps. Also included in the kit, but not used by us was a Vortech FMU and a “weld-less” oil drain adapter. The Vortech FMU was not needed since we had a fuel delivery solution and we always prefer a welded fitting in the oil pan rather than a “weld-less” solution.
The turbocharger installation was performed by Tim Clair and Scott Branson at Syizm with some assistance from our Corporate Creative Director Phil Lam and Managing Editor Sami Sharaf. Total install time was roughly six hours.
Since the factory exhaust system would not be ready for prime-time turbo action, we opted for a KTELLER exhaust system fitted with a MagnaFlow muffler. Sean Griffin at Griffinwurxs welded up the exhaust.