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Bense
Bense New Reader
2/9/21 10:53 p.m.

In reply to Number1Gaza :

TBD on how it compares to Hondata. I'm getting a dump of a 07-08 TLS 6MT ECU ROM. 

As far as the rear shock mod; you just cut or grind down the grommet. It's pretty easy. What you end up trimming down is the metal collar that's in the bushing by about 1/8" on each side. It's 6.2 lbs of unsprung weight on each corner, and that weight difference is from the stock, steel Accord rear knuckle, it's 10.2" rotor and it's corresponding caliper bracket vs hybrid rear knuckle, it's 11.1" rotor and it's corresponding caliper bracket. 

I was just gonna ask you for whatever I pay for them. About $80/pair

russ_mill
russ_mill Reader
2/10/21 6:45 a.m.

That is pretty bare. Thanks!

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
2/10/21 10:34 a.m.

The donor car has contributed about all it can to the project and the budget, so today it is going by bye.  
Getting it on a buddy's lawn trailer with nothing but a come-along and an engine hoist was fun, as it no longer has usable hubs to bolt wheels to.  

Bense, thanks for the rear knuckle offer.  I really might take you up on that soon, but not quite yet.  I have literally no free $ right now for my car.  Physical therapy is expensive, and my doctor tells me I need to go for the next 12 weeks to see if I can avoid super invasive knee surgery.  Major knee arthritis at my age sucks.  

Bense
Bense New Reader
2/10/21 11:38 a.m.

Is that 378 out past Lake Murray Baptist Church?

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
2/22/21 5:00 p.m.

Yesterday I volunteered to adjust the valves on a friend's 2012 Honda Pilot.  A good time was had by all:

Turns out that all the rear bank exhaust valves are virtually impossible to access in the pilot.  I spent a good amount of time in that position.  My ribs are quite bruised.  
 

The sunroof plug is coming along, I ordered the Lexan and cut it mostly to size; and I'm making mounts out of some aluminum angle.  Should be finished this week.

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
2/22/21 5:04 p.m.

Is the cowl permanent on the Pilot? Honda is usually pretty good at making that removable. 

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
2/22/21 5:46 p.m.

In reply to mazdeuce - Seth :

I'm pretty sure the cowl is permanent.  Even if it was removable it really wouldn't improve access all that much.  The trouble is that the motor is way lower in the engine bay and closer to the firewall than in the sedans.  Add the fact that the VCM setup on top of the rocker arms blocks the view to the rear valves, and it's a royal PITA.  
I should have used a small mirror to better see what I was doing with the feeler guages, but I didn't have one handy and by shoving myself under the cowl like that I was more or less able to see what I was doing.  

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
3/5/21 4:03 p.m.

I finally mounted the sunroof plug today.  all that remains is to seal the edges, which have some pretty significant gaps due to my careless cutting of the Lexan.  
What's different about my plug vs other ones I've seen is that I made a frame that bolts in to the sheet metal supports around the sunroof hole.  The actual sheet metal and paint are untouched, so if I were ever to remove the plug and reinstall the sunroof, I could.  It's the only way I could sell my wife on the deal.  
 

pictures:

Something funky with picture uploads going on, not sure if these are resized correctly.  They look smaller than usual in the preview.

Anyway, one big challenge was that the  right angle sheet metal support is only located on 3 of the 4 edges of the sunroof hole.  The rear edge is just plain sheet metal with a bit of a frame underneath, but nothing that drops down at a right angle at the edge of the hole.  What I ended up doing was drilling holes in the bit of frame that was there, one big hole and one the size of the bolt that I used.  I then fed a nut in the space between the sheet metal and sheet metal frame, used a magnet to center the nut, and then ran my bolt through the aluminum mounts and into the nut.  Seems to have worked pretty well.  

The other challenge was getting the sunroof plug  to mount flush to the roof, which is a rounded shape, and to get the Lexan plug to also take the correct rounded shape, as it is flat and doesn't want to bend on its own.  And my aluminum angle mounts are also flat.  I decided to use spacers in between the bolts to get the correct separation.  But what to use for spacers?  They all need to be different sizes, and stacking washers is both heavy and doesn't really work well with more than about 3 washers.  After some thought, I bought a couple feet of surgical tubing, cut the tube to the length I needed the spacer, and then wrapped gorilla tape around the surgical tube to widen it.  Worked perfectly for some customizable spacers. 


Next week I'll finish sealing it, and then the final step will be to cover the whole plug in some carbon fiber pattern vinyl wrap, which will help with sun warping, water protection and aesthetics.

Edit:  final note on weight savings:  

Everything removed from the roof, including the glass, weighs 51 lbs.  the Lexan plug weighs 6 lbs and the aluminum angle and hardware weigh approximately 1lb, so 7 lbs total went back onto the roof.  Total savings is 44 lbs.  

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
3/10/21 1:27 p.m.

Sunroof plug is sealed and basically finished, I just need to cover it with vinyl.  
 

I also got a screw in one of the rear tires, luckily one of the 2 that are mostly bald.  As my front tires have some life left I searched around for some used pilot super sports.  Found 2 of the exact tires I have in good shape for $90 on fleabay.  I just had them installed today.  
 

Old tire:

New Tire:

Pic uploads still wacky but hopefully the improvement is obvious.

Following the install I took the car for the first test drive with all the weight removed from the roof.  I was surprised how much of a difference it makes.  The roof is stiffer with the plug and aluminum bracing, and obviously lighter.  The car corners much flatter and with less body roll.  

Bense
Bense New Reader
3/10/21 6:42 p.m.

I'll give you Accord Hybrid rear knuckles + brakes if you make me one lol

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
3/11/21 10:58 a.m.
Bense said:

I'll give you Accord Hybrid rear knuckles + brakes if you make me one lol

I think I'll pass, that Lexan plug was one of the more unpleasant projects I've done.  Among other things, Lexan dust sticks to everything, including yourself.  Makes a giant mess.  I need to buy a jigsaw.

 

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
3/11/21 4:13 p.m.

I investigated the reading light/home link box today.  It's large and looked heavy, and is surrounded by a steel frame that is removable.  I forgot to take a before pic, but you can see it in the far left of this pic:

I wanted to find a way to retain the reading lights and delete the rest.  Here's what I ended up with:

i put the little plastic cover over the middle for looks, but there's nothing underneath.  Removed bits weigh 1.5 lbs, not as much as I hoped but it was the last bit of removable weight from the roof of the car.

 

My next project is going to be finding enough room in the budget for better coil overs.  One of the front and one of the rear shocks are blown.  Car drives like crap.  Should I just buy Koni's and reuse the existing springs?  Idk if Koni's have enough damping for 12k front springs and 6k in the rear, which is what's on the car now.  And ideally I'd like to go up on rear spring rate, either 8 or 10k.  6k is too low vs the front.  

Trentin21
Trentin21 New Reader
4/7/21 8:09 p.m.

In reply to Bense :

My account won't let me pm you so I figured I'd comment, how much would you charge plus shipping for a lsd for my j30a5 accord 6 speed

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
4/17/21 4:10 p.m.

Warning:  Toyota Sienna content

The family mobile is a 2017 Toyota Sienna. It's been dead reliable and a comfortable highway cruiser and road tripper for nearly 60,000 miles now.  It has one flaw: The front brakes suck.  The rotors warped within 20k miles and the pads were gone within 25k.  I changed the pads but neglected to change the rotors, and that was a mistake.  The car chatters every time I sniff the brake pedal.  
 

I changed the rotors and pads today, Centric High Carbon rotors and upgraded pads.  After a bit of forum research, apparently the brakes have some airflow issues, or rather a lack thereof.  Rotor warping is quite common.  So I made a very crude air deflector to hopefully get some more air flowing to the brakes.  

It's an old strawberry pail with the top and bottom cut off, sliced down the middle, and ziptied to the lower control arm and subframe. Calling it "grassroots" would be extremely generous.  But hey, function over form.  Now I need some kind of probe thermometer so I can see if it makes any difference in brake rotor temp.  I can test one side vs the other because I only had one strawberry pail.  So only the drivers side is done.  Lol.  

Bense
Bense New Reader
4/17/21 5:15 p.m.

Your brake ducts are pail by comparison!

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
4/27/21 7:48 p.m.

Made a purchase this evening:

what you are looking at is a full set of used H&R coilovers.  Aka some progressive springs paired with Bilstein dampers that are rebuildable and revalveable.  Eventually that will be on the menu but for now I'm happy with the purchase.  $250 shipped.  
 

Side note:  Megan coilovers suck.  I've read lots of threads that confirm this but it's definitely been my experience.  The dampers are fine when they aren't blown but they seem to blow extremely easily.  Chinesium quality.  You get what you pay for.  

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
6/6/21 7:26 a.m.

A work trip, a week's vacation, and Amazon being inexplicably late delivering my spanner wrench purchase and it's been over a month since I touched the car.  
 

A good friend has a 2019 Hyundai Sonata 2.0 turbo.  Engine went at less than 30k miles.  What do you think the dealership might say to an owner with a blown engine well within warrantee?  If you guessed haggle for a month and delay the project as long as possible, you'd be correct.  My friend has 2 kids and his wife works too and they've been stuck with one car for over a month with no end in sight.  So I'm lending him the Accord.  
 

I'm not about to let my buddy drive it with 2 blown shocks so last night I installed the H&R coilovers.  A quick drive confirmed that the car rides much better, but also softer.  If I ever add real aero I'm going to need stiffer springs and revalve the shocks.  But for driveability right now, it's a needed improvement.  
 

The new coils also allowed me to get the car a little lower, which I'd been wanting.  

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
6/25/21 10:27 a.m.

I got the car back from my friend two nights ago.  He put about 800 miles on it and it ran great the whole time.  Only issue is the sunroof plug has sprung a small leak, and the water dripped on the passenger seat and dried out the leather.  Bummer since that seat was in perfect condition before that happened.  Oh well, now I have an excuse to buy racing seats laugh

I drove it some last night and today, having done nothing but a 5 mile test drive before I handed it off to my friend a couple of weeks ago.  It really is a fun ride.  The new coilovers make the car daily driveable again; the ride was just about intolerable before the swap.  But, I have to do some priority arranging because there is still a bunch of things I need to do moving forward, and some things I'd like to do but don't necessarily need.

* Power steering pump.  Definitely #1 on the list.  

* Rear brake calipers and rotors

* Rear adjustable toe and camber arms

* Track brake pads, all 4 corners

* Oil cooler

* J Pipe and catback exhaust.  Something not too loud

* 2006 Acura TL manual ECU.  Car is down on power in lower RPMs and I think swapping ECU's will fix the problem.  The ECU is easy but I need to find a cheap solution for syncing it to the key and ignition.  Stealership charges upwards of $400.  I need to find a friend with a programmer.

* 4" intake.  Might also cave in and get a j37 intake manifold and throttle body, not so much for power, but because it saves 10 lbs.

*  Weight loss.  Smaller Battery, Accord Hybrid hood, aforementioned magnesium intake manifold, racing seats

* Rebuild bilstein shocks to pair with stiffer springs.  I need to figure out what spring rate I'll want to run when the time comes.  Without a lottery win this is realistically quite a while down the road, but the new H&R coilovers are soft enough where I don't think I can do anything to add a lot of downforce until this step is complete.  I may try to make the car more slippery before then; currently the back bumper is like a sail catching air so that's an easy spot for improvement.  And I can add hood louvers too; that's another easy spot for improvement.  Those will also help with underhood temps.

* Aero.  Splitter, flat underbody, diffuser

As always, I'm fighting what I want vs good enough.  I really want some seat time on a track, so in that spirit I think I'm going to prioritize what I NEED to get on the track.  The engine isn't perfect but it should run reliably on the track, as long as its not too hot out.  I'm shooting for a track day this fall.  

 

 

Bense
Bense New Reader
6/25/21 10:41 a.m.

I'll help you with the immobilizer.

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
6/25/21 10:55 a.m.

In reply to Bense :

You have a programmer?  That would be awesome

solfly
solfly Dork
6/25/21 11:24 a.m.

Get a factory PS pump.

Bense
Bense New Reader
6/25/21 11:37 a.m.
Number1Gaza said:

In reply to Bense :

You have a programmer?  That would be awesome

Launch x431

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
6/25/21 12:33 p.m.

In reply to Bense :     Awesome.  I'll be hitting you up at some point then.  

In reply to solfly :    Yeah that's what I'm planning on doing.

Bense
Bense New Reader
6/25/21 1:31 p.m.

Whenever you get your ECU let me know. I'll be driving through your area fairly soon. 

Number1Gaza
Number1Gaza GRM+ Memberand Reader
6/30/21 8:39 p.m.

I finally got around to covering the sunroof plug with $6 carbon fiber pattern vinyl from Amazon.  Because I wasn't able to find flat back bolts for the sunroof and used machine bolts instead, the vinyl bubbles around all the bolts.  So I don't love it.  But it works, for now, looks better than bare Lexan anyway, particularly from a distance.   Up close the imperfections are much more evident.  
 


 

I also ordered a 2006 Acura TL manual trans ECU, following Bense's generous offer of programming my immobilizer and key to the new ECU.  The lack of power at low RPM is dramatic enough that I need to figure out if it's the ECU or something else.  

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