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Beanstune builds a 3.0CL "daily"

Old 09-09-2018, 01:18 PM
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Beanstune builds a 3.0CL "daily"

Well, lets start this story just after I finished 'building' my 5th gen Prelude. The H22 was pretty fun and the car was pretty clean, but with poly filled mounts, no balance shaft belt, 205/40/17's, OEM replacement shocks/2.5" of drop - it was not comfortable. My now wife(yeah, got married June 20th, I don't know what she was thinking but now she's f*cked) put her car into a curb over the winter and pulverized the front driver corner. Lots of shit to replace. She got a rental car, but itwould've been nice if she wanted to drive one of mine, but can't because Manuel Transmicion. I've tried to teach her, but she's.... not great. Anyway, we also want to start having kids soon. And my lease on my Fiesta ST is up in June. Kind of a culmination of a lot of different things.

So I sold the Prelude. Lost money on it(of course), after replacing just about everything on it. Ugh. Paid off a credit card and stashed some money in the bank towards a house.

3 months roll by. I was getting sick of blending e30 for the Fiesta, and decided to 'part out' the intercooler, tune, rear motor mount, and a couple other misc things on the car. I never drive it anymore. My lease ends June 2019, and I'm 20K under mileage because I drive my work car 95% of the time.

Flush with about $1000 in my pocket, I decide its time to start shopping for a new daily. I wanted my old CD7 back, so I sent the guy I sold it to a message, asked if I could come look it over, and he agreed. I went over to his place and started looking the car over. The rocker corners were gone. Rusted to hell. He wanted almost as much as I sold it to him for, with 40k more miles, worn tires(that I replaced just before I sold it), P/S rack was shot, and the engine bay looked like it hadn't been cleaned since I sold it. Leaks everywhere. I passed and continued my search.

While looking at different cars, I thought about what I really wanted. I've been dabbling with J-series stuff with a couple friends cars for a while, so it had to be J-powered. I loved the idea of a 5th gen Accord sedan V6 with a J-swap, but then thought about the shit that would be involved to sort it out. I liked the 6th gen sedans, but am very"meh" about the interior. Considered a 3rd gen 6 speed TL, but price is still a littlehigh, and wife couldn't drive it. 1st gen TL's are awesome looking, and 5th gen based, but the G and C series have ZERO support and they never come up in yards for easy parts replacement.

Then it dawned on me. The 97-99 3.0CL. Slushbox, check. J-series, check. 5th gen Accord, more or less, check. Time to start my search. Within about 3 hours I found one. It was an hour away, looked clean, and had a slipping trans. Only 120K miles on it. Asking price was $600. Perfect. I sent the guy a message and we set something up. He sent me a few pictures in the meantime to show me the extent of the rust and wear on the car.








I showed up a couple days later to test drive the car and check it out. Car drove pretty decent, had enough power, trans had a little bit of a flare between 1-2, 3-4, and rough engagement. Negligible rust spots. Trim work was all dented in rubber door seals were trashed. Looked like a blind meth head put in the windshield and fucked up the trim around it. Passenger side fender was dented, headlight and turn signal busted. Various dents, scratches, dings, etc all over the car. The inside was absolutely filthy. It had some really nasty looking Hyundai Sonata wheels with mismatched, no-name 205/60/16's. The brakes were absolutely GONE on the car. Heavy, instant fade, long pedal travel, super rusty looking, and pad dust galore. Discovered it had an aftermarket cheap Kenwood radio. No real clunks, rattles, or weird stuff going on(aside from the brakes and trans).

I needed it. Threw the guy his asking price, got the title, and told him I would be back in a couple of day to pick it up.





Brought the car back home and immediately took it to my friend to have a quick detail done on it. No buffing or anything, just a heavy, heavy clean so I could see exactly what I was working with. Oh, did I mention the car drove flawlessly the hour or so back? What a great cruiser. Cruise control set to 80mph and the thing just glided. The car felt super composed and comfortable at speed.

Continue to next post...
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Old 09-09-2018, 01:18 PM
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My friend worked his magic. The only thing that would work on the filthy leather was a Mr. Clean magic eraser. The carpet was absolutely wrecked with dark stains. The glass looked like someone smeared a teen's face all over them. The outside wasn't quite as bad. Just very dirty, brake dust particles all over the place, paint contamination, spots from stuff sitting on it forever, etc. It took him two days, but it cleaned up beautifully. He said he's never had a car that "bad". The engine bay looked like new and the plastics really came back. The paint definitely needs correction, but that will wait until I get a new fender and front bumper. Taffeta white looks so great when it's cleaned up. The car only had 120K on it and now it looked like it. It blows my mind how people can spend so much money to purchase a car and then completely neglect it.





While looking over the car, I began to notice just how clean and stock it was. Aside from a few things being recently replaced, the car was stock. I opened the airbox to check the air filter, and was pleasantly surprised with a K&N drop in. Score haha! All the windows and sunroof worked perfectly, as did all the switches, buttons, etc. Noticed the aftermarket Kenwood radio was basically just sitting in the hole. I don't know how I didn't notice it when driving the car previously, but while it was idling, I noticed it had an exhaust leak near the flex pipe. Checked the A/C for the first time- it worked great! Seat heaters worked too! Awesome!


After examining the car, I made a list:

Replace the headlights and turn signals
Replace the door seals and damaged trim
Drain and fill trans, clean solenoid screens, replace pressure sensors
Fix the brakes
Replace the tires
Fix exhaust leak
Replace the damaged fender and bumper
Check timing belt
Replace plugs, wires, cap, rotor
Mount the radio, replace the stock speakers with something a little nicer.

Should be a decent daily driver. I didn't NEED a four door as my wife has one. Any driving I do is either in her car, or just around town to run errands.I just wanted something fairly quiet, comfortable, something my wife could drive, if I needed to, I could throw a baby seat or two in the back.

Time to get started.
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Old 09-09-2018, 01:19 PM
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First things first, the headlights and turn signals had to go.

Threw in some black Depo's and clears in the bumper. Removed the intake resonator while the bumper was off. Did some junkyard divingand got new door window chrome strips for both sides, a driver side door seal(still need a passenger side), windshield trims/clips, and other various trim pieces. This really made the car look 100% better.





My friend's son definitely approved.
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Old 09-09-2018, 01:19 PM
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While poking around the car, noticed the transmission mount was pretty roached. Decided to replace that the same time as I was cleaning the transmission linear shift solenoid screens, replaced the two pressure sensors, and did a drain and fill of the trans fluid using Valvoline Max Life ATF after reading some threads on bobistheoilguy forums. The drain plug on the transmission was covered in metallic goo and the screens on the dual linear solenoid were clogged. After cleaning everything up, the car drove infinitely better but still had a little flare on the 1-2 and 3-4. Added a little bit of line pressure by adjust the dual linear solenoid. Shifts are firm now, but no more flares or slips! Just need to do the drain and fill a couple more times and I think the trans will be good to go. Gave the car it's first real test by driving it out to my dad's property about an hour away to tend to his garden while he was out of town.



Discovered a new issue on this drive: either the car has a problem with the immobilizer and the valet key(only key I got with the car), or it needs a new ignition switch. It shut off while driving a couple of times on the way out and back, spooked me at first, but once I was able to restart it while coasting(put it in neutral, started it back up), I pretty much figured it out. When it shuts off, the green key light on the cluster blinks. Sometimes when starting the car, it wants to shut off immediately after it fires unless you turn the key back slightly slower than normal. Not too worried about it at the moment as it's not a really big concern.
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Old 09-09-2018, 01:20 PM
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It was finally time to address the brakes. When shopping online, I figured "If I'm going to replace the brakes, might as well replace the bearings." Then I thought "Wait, why don't I just 5 lug swap the car?" Did some parts number cross referencing, and discovered the 1st gen Odyssey and 3.0CL used the same front knuckle and bearing. The rotors were the same dimensions. Easy enough, got two new front bearings, 5 lug 1st gen odyssey front hubs, rotors, and some Centric 106 compound pads. I figured the rear would be the same as any 5th gen, and ordered RSX rotors and a 5th gen Prelude hub/bearing assembly, and another set of Centric 106 compound pads(foreshadowing...). I could've used the front 11.8" 3.5RL rotors, but didn't feel like trying to source another set of caliper brackets, and being about to fit a 15" wheel/tire will be nice.


Found a set of OEM 02-04 RSX 16" wheels for $60 locally with tires. Guy said two tires were good and newer, and two needed to be replaced. For $60, I didn't really care. For those wondering, the 02-04 RSX wheels are actuallya pretty good wheel. 16x6.5 +45 offset, made by Enkei, 16lbs a piece. Very strong too. Why a 16? I didn't want the car to have a "tuner" look, but more "OEM Plus." It's a bit nicer than an Accord, and thus, heavier. It's an Acura after all. I wanted(wanted) to preserve this as much as possible. The paint on them sucks, and the two "good" tires were only about 2 years old and had decent tread depth, but had toe wear. Ugh. Align your cars people!



Ordered a set of 205/55/16 Nokian Z-line A/S tires after lots of research and seeing the prices. Nokian makes awesome snow tires, and this all-season out performs the summer tire it replaced - Lime Rock even uses the A/S on it's school Miatas. These are supposed to be awesome in the rain, super quiet, and have decent snow traction. Perfect.

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Old 09-09-2018, 01:20 PM
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While doing my nightly craigslist stalking for deals, I came across an ad for Neuspeed springs and Konis for a CB7.... Priced at $125. Immediately sent the guy a message. He said everything was brand new, and he had been sitting on the parts for about 4 years as the car they were going on was wrecked and he never got to put them on. Took the CL on the almost 3 hour drive down to him and once again, the car worked great with only the brakes and ignition cutting out a couple times.

Turns out the springs were Neuspeed Race springs and the shocks were brand new fronts. Score! For $120 they were mine. Ordered a pair of rear Koni's online last week and am waiting for those to come in Tuesday. With how much these springs drop 4 cylinder cars, this 400lb heavier fatboi is probably gonna be pretty low. Oh, wait, didn't I wanna keep this thing pretty stock and ride nice? Ruined my new daily, time to look for another daily....

Started my 5 lug conversion yesterday morning. "Started" being the key word. The fronts went together no problem. Everything just dropped into place as it should've. All the bushings, tie rods, and balljoints were in great shape. Awesome. took about 3 hours to get the front end done on both sides really taking my time.




Went to go start on the back and hindsight, or hopefulness, bit me hard. Of course the rear lower shock bushings were seized to the through bolt. Made a trip to Honda to order those(and rotor screws). Decided to try the hubs instead of messing with that. Turns out, 1st gen CL's use the same rear knuckle with the larger spindle shaft from the Accord Wagons. DOH! Last minute scramble to the junkyard, and an hour of rage smashing my way through a couple of lower shock bushings(after breaking two brand new sawzall blades) with a pry bar awarded me with rear knuckles off a black '97 Accord EX coupe. Ha. It was like pulling parts off my old car.



Got them back home, cleaned them up a little bit, threw on the Prelude rear hubs and rotors. Need the 626 axle nuts now. Good news is now everything fits as it should. Rear shocks should come in Tomorrow, and Honda should have my parts on Tuesday. Should have the car back on the ground and driving by the end of the week. Can't wait.

Now just deciding on what color to paint the RSX wheels. Been thinking about a semi-gloss black, or a dark silver(not grey/charcoal).
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Old 09-09-2018, 01:22 PM
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As of 9/9/18, currently there's about $2000 invested into this thing so far. My bank account is hating life right now. Soon, we shall be done. My Fiesta ST lease ends in June 2019, and while the car has been great, and a total riot, it will be pretty nice to be able to kill off that car payment/insurance and put it towards a house.

1998 Acura 3.0CL
Taffeta White
J30A1 4AT

Rundown of mods:
Koni Yellow Shocks
Neuspeed Race springs
5-lug conversion
Centric 106 compound pads
16x6.5 02-04 RSX wheels
205/55/16 Nokian Z-line A/S tires
Depo Blackhousing headlights
Depo clear front bumper lights

Plans:
J35A4 swap, using the J30A1 cams to run the distributor at first
J35A6 Odyssey intake manifold
J35A3 MDX throttle body(purchased for $30)
Ebay Headers(purchased for $40 already)
AEM intake(included with the headers)
Quiet 2.5" exhaust using the Borla Type-S muffler currently installed on my Fiesta ST

I have a set of J32A2 Type-S cams I could put into the car, they would just have to be machined to run the distributor. Why machine the cams instead of converting to coil on plug? Sounds easy enough, just use an 00-02 Accord V6 ECU and harness since those are 4 speed as well. Not that simple. The 6th gen Accord have an integrated TCU within the ECU. The 1st gen 3.0CL's utilize a separate TCU, have a different style coolant temp sensor, as well as various other wiring differences. Too much of a headache.

I HAVE NO PLANS TO 6 SPEED SWAP THE CAR. I do not want to 6 speed swap this car. It will stay an auto. IF the trans blows up, I'll rebuild it and use the stronger Raybestos GPX clutches/steels, add a big external cooler, and stick a converter in it. Aside from my wife being able to drive it(auto), I love the consistency of an auto for drag racing, which is what I've primarily done now that I'm 'done' with autocross. It's a daily driver, an auto is just fine.

A big lazy turbo could be in this things future, but who knows, I may just go a little nuts.... a couple of my friends have some REALLY fast Mustangs and always have goodies sitting around...



HA! Kidding! A blower is definitely out of the question. Zero room for that. It may get something along the lines of a Borg Warner S366 or something that's big and lazy and can make about 400whp at 8lbs or something dumb like that. That's WAY down the line though, and I'd then probably convert it to coil on plug and figure out a standalone to use. Remember that whole, "ruined my daily, time to look for a new daily"....
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Old 09-09-2018, 02:21 PM
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https://acurazine.com/forums/new-member-introductions-441/new-member-973085

link to my intro thread which has links to my two previous Honda "builds"
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Old 09-09-2018, 02:22 PM
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Ohhhhh haiiii there bic boi!!! I gotta say you got a hell of a deal and lots of progress in a small amount of time. Dang my kid looks like a baller in that car hahaha Keep it up Beans!
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Old 09-10-2018, 06:18 PM
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Rear Koni's came in today, waiting on parts from Honda now to finish the rear. Should be ready to touch ground Wednesday as I have no intention of rushing tomorrow to get it all done. I'll probably get both sides "done" tomorrow but go through everything Wednesday after work- brake grease, double checking bolts, anti-seize, etc. My friend should have the tires mounted for me Wednesday as well, just have to decide on what color to paint the wheels.

Maybe I can coheres you into huffing paint fumes and getting anti-seize all over everything, Jon.
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Old 09-11-2018, 08:27 AM
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Somebody say Huffing? Im there, and yes I like anti-seize. Ima a messy guy and you know this...from several past experiences
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Old 09-13-2018, 03:39 PM
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Got everything all "done" late last night and took it for a quick drive around the block. 90foxnotch(Jon) came over and did a killer job on the wheels and helping me button things up.

Oh. My. God.

The results speak for themselves. Simply outstanding. The wheel style fits the style of the car perfect.






(Oh look, it's Jon)









Just got home from work and snapped this walking in(scope my sweet work car)





I love the way this thing looks. The brakes work perfect now, so glad none of the calipers were seized. It rides almost like stock with the Koni's at 1/2 turn from full soft. Going to get some Mazda 626 axles nuts for the rear soon, align it, bleed the brakes(I'm sure the fluid is old AF), and throw cotter pins in all the balljoints since every single one broke taking them out.
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:06 PM
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You definitely nailed it with those wheels. Stance looks perfect. Who sprayed those wheels?! So professional
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