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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Honda Element 6 speed Manual Transmission Conversion

Part numbers supplied are from a 2006 Acura TSX 6MT
The identical parts could be obtained from a 2006 Civic Si 6MT, but the part numbers will be slightly different.

I recommend both of these manuals:
Helms Honda Element Manual
Helms Acura TSX Manual

- Shifter mechanism parts -
Reverse shift piece 24240-PNS-000
Shift arm interlock 24430-PNS-000 (or modify the old one)

*5-6 gearshift fork 24201-RAS-000* NOTE: In at least one CRV and possibly in some later model Elements the Reverse shift piece may be welded to the Element's 5-Reverse shift fork, instead of being attached by a pin. In this case see step 3 below.

These parts are optional. The function of these parts hasn't been determined; however the transmission functions well without them. They may be necessary for reverse safety interlock.
* MBS arm 24412-PNS-000
* MBS arm spring 24413-PNS-000

* - added by MikeQBF. }

- Main shaft parts -
Mainshaft 6th gear 23590-RAS-A00
Needle Bearing (35 x 41 x 24) 91103-RAS-003
Collar (28 x 35 x 24) 23916-PNS-000
5-6 Synchronizer Sleeve Set 23626-PNS-315

- Countershaft parts -
Special bolt 90011-PPP-000
Countershaft 6th gear 23491-RAS-000

Procedure
Note: This is the procedure that I followed. This worked for me, however if there are mistakes or omissions I cannot be held responsible. There are several variations that will also work. Without proper experience it is possible to destroy the transmission if it is not reassembled correctly. It is important to inspect all parts and if there are any worn parts they should be replaced. Please use caution and common sense.

1. Following procedure in the Element Manual, remove the transmission. Note it is not necessary to remove the outboard joints of the driveshafts from the wheel hub. They can remain in place. Just remove the inboard joints from the transmission and intermediate shaft. Do remove the intermediate shaft.

2. Follow procedure in the Element Manual for disassembly of the transmission. Stop after the shifter and gearsets have been removed. Discard the reverse cam lock.

3. Drive out the pin connecting the reverse shift fork and the 5th gear shift fork. Discard the pin. Remove and discard the reverse shift fork. Replace with the new 6 speed reverse shift fork. **In at least one CRV and possibly some later model Elements the reverse shift fork may be welded to the 5th gear shift fork (rather than attached by a connecting pin). In this case you must order the TSX 5-6 gearshift fork 24201-RAS-000. Use this shift fork as a replacement for the stock 5th gear shift fork.**

4. Follow the procedure in the Element Manual for disassembly of the mainshaft. Remove the taper cone ring and associated distance collar, and discard. Remove 5th gear synchronizer, discard and stop. Follow the procedure in the Acura TSX manual for reassembly of the mainshaft. Press the new 5-6 synchronizer hub onto the mainshaft. Place the new collar and needle bearing on the mainshaft. Place the new mainshaft 6th gear over the needle bearing. Replace the ball bearing as directed.

5. Follow the procedure in the Element Manual for disassembly of the countershaft. The appropriate way to do this is to use a bearing puller and hydraulic press, but some people cheat. Other people find a local tranny shop may help with this step. Remove the special bolt (note - reverse threads). Remove the bearing, the shim, and the distance collar, then stop. Discard the special bolt and distance collar. Follow the procedure in the Acura TSX manual for reassembly of the mainshaft. Press the countershaft 6th gear onto the countershaft. Complete reassembly of the countershaft as directed.

6. Replace the shift arm interlock with the new interlock. Alternatively, the slot in the old shift arm interlock can be elongated by about 6mm (the width of the reverse select lever).

7. Follow procedure in the Element Manual for reassembly of the transmission. Do not re-install the reverse lock cam. Note: Be sure to install the speed sensor spacer (It is not a washer) in the correct order - Bolt, sensor, spacer, transmission.

8. Following procedure in the Element Manual, install the transmission.

9. Drive.
 

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You make it sound soooo easy...:rolleyes:
I am going to ask a transmission shop for a quote and if its too much im doing it myself, but only because rhurt did all this work for us. Thanks for all the info!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
A word of caution

Let me just point out a couple of things. First please be aware of all of the cons of this procedure. Among the most notable: You will void your warranty. There will not be a reverse lockout (Without some extra work). And there is a very real possibility that if done incorrectly you could ruin your transmission. Finally this procedure requires some specialized tools and experience. There are a number of tolerances to be measured that may require replacement of shims. If you overlook these it may compromise the smoothness and life of the transmission. (FYI I hate to admit it but I took the risk and skipped a few measurments - don't try this at home.)

That said, the E is running really well. I don't have any mileage checks yet, but it definetly takes less gas pedal for a given speed. I hope that more of you will risk it and try this, especially someone with 4WD. I definitely plan on getting another Element in the future, maybe by then Honda will do this for us. If not I will do it all again. If anyone has specific questions or would like further advice I am available.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The shift interlock

This is the adaptation I made to the shift interlock. The purpose of this is to allow one more shifter gate in the shift pattern. If this is not done then you will not be able to shift into the new reverse slot.

There are two options: 1) Purchase a 6 speed interlock and replace it as described above. 2) Modify the original, by removing just enough metal to allow to allow the shift arm to get into reverse.

Here are some photos outlining the material to be removed in red.
 

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BIGRIG said:
To the best of your knowlage would the civic 6 speed tranny drop right in there?
Hmmm... interesting... more expensive part, but less time and less probability of error...
 

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I will try to get to the transmission place tomorrow since it is in the same complex as the place where I'm picking up my motorcycle anywayand then I will let everyone know. I do have an AWD E, but due to a vacation for most of Aug it may be a few paychecks after that, maybe Sept....by then I may not be the first AWD E to try (this could be a good or bad thing).
 

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Discussion Starter #9
BIGRIG said:
Once the mod is done ...is there any clearance issue between the shifter and the trim in the shifter console?
What are the odds the new civic 6 speed shifter would drop in there?
To the best of your knowlage would the civic 6 speed tranny drop right in there?

There are NO clearance issues. I am using the same stock shifter. The 06 Civic Si shifter will not fit, but there is no reason to do this. The 02 Civic Si shifter probably will fit, but it probably has the same throw. However, the Buddy Club short throw shifter for the 02 Si probably will fit and tighten the shift (I have not tried it).

I have replaced all of the rubber bushings in the linkage and at the base of the shifter with metal ones. This has really tightened up the linkage.

Finally the 06 Civic Si 6 speed transmission should bolt up, probably with some mounting mods. BUT, it has the same final drive, the same sixth gear, and a LOWER 5th gear, so I don't see an advantage over the conversion.
 

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Mago said:
I will try to get to the transmission place tomorrow since it is in the same complex as the place where I'm picking up my motorcycle anywayand then I will let everyone know. I do have an AWD E, but due to a vacation for most of Aug it may be a few paychecks after that, maybe Sept....by then I may not be the first AWD E to try (this could be a good or bad thing).
I may beat you to it with my awd, I talked with my tranny friend (that doesn't sound right) and he's excited about doing this.

rhurt, is the slot length on the interlock critical, as in too much would be bad?

The 6-spd interlock is part 17161 and $22.78.

I'm having visualization problems, I'm not sure what my 5-spd is doing to prevent me from slamming it into reverse currently, let alone what would be required along with the 6-spd conversion. I'm a little concerned about this, my wife tends to overshoot and she's the primary driver, I don't want her trashing the reverse gears if it is possible.

Great stuff.

Just curious Mago, are you familiar with the album Tago Mago by the german band CAN?
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
worthywads said:
I may beat you to it with my awd, I talked with my tranny friend (that doesn't sound right) and he's excited about doing this.

rhurt, is the slot length on the interlock critical, as in too much would be bad?

I'm having visualization problems, I'm not sure what my 5-spd is doing to prevent me from slamming it into reverse currently, let alone what would be required along with the 6-spd conversion. I'm a little concerned about this, my wife tends to overshoot and she's the primary driver, I don't want her trashing the reverse gears if it is possible.
Interlock slot length: Too much would be bad. It would allow you to potentially overshoot the reverse shifter and get stuck out of gear. However it is pretty easy to modify and go slowly. It is in a part (shift arm) that is easy to install, test, and remove. If you are worried, just buy the other one.

Reverse lock: There is a cam in the 5 speed that prevents you from moving the shift lever from 5th directly into reverse. This way when you downshift to 4th, you cannot mistakenly put it into reverse. Instead to shift from 5th to reverse you must pull the shift lever out of 5th, move it at least one space to the left, then back to the right and into reverse.

In the 6 speed conversion this reverse lockout would block 6th gear instead.
 

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gfxguy said:
BIGRIG said:
To the best of your knowlage would the civic 6 speed tranny drop right in there?
Hmmm... interesting... more expensive part, but less time and less probability of error...
Thought about this for about a minute and didn't get a chance to follow-up. The answer is probably no... I have no doubt the gear ratios are way different.
 

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This is probably the most exciting thing I've seen on the EOC. The parts for this conversion are super cheap, probably about a tenth of the total cost in having a transmisison shop do the work for you, if you can find one!

Here in the DC suburbs, I doubt there is a shop that is even willing to attempt the modification, but I will look. They are either too busy, or don't want to accept the risk.

If anyone in the Metro DC Area is interested in doing this, lets find a shop together and see if we can't save some bucks.

Keep the good posts and pics coming!
 

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I highly doubt another transmission from another Honda or Acura will bolt up in an E without some form out adapter mount kit. The reason I say this is because I have seen a few discussions on some K engine swap message boards talk about not being able to use a transmission from E with the mount kits needed to bolt up in the older Civics. If the kits dont work then it means that the E's transmissions mounts are different than most K serires transmissions. I have yet to see a comparison myself so I cannot tell how much is really different.

If there is someone reluctant to hack up there current transmission from there E why not just find a used one from a junk yard. They are not in demand and should be pretty cheap. Then you just mod the used transmission with the sixth gear and keep the stock one in case there are any future issues.

John
 

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1fastvx said:
If there is someone reluctant to hack up there current transmission from there E why not just find a used one from a junk yard. They are not in demand and should be pretty cheap. Then you just mod the used transmission with the sixth gear and keep the stock one in case there are any future issues.
Not to rain on that parade... but... in the "general population" (EOC doesn't count!), M/T E's are already scarce as hen's teeth, and wrecked E's are (hopefully) also a scarce item, so combing junkyards for a wrecked E with M/T is more than likely to be an exercise in futility. It might be worth a phone call or two, but the odds are definitely against you here.
 

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MikeQBF...Actually there are more out there than you think. I found at least five locally to me. Just becuse you dont see them wrecked here on the board doesnt mean they are not there. Check out the link below. Its a search engine for used car parts all over the country.

www.car-part.com

John
 

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Wow! That's amazing. There were a dozen... none within 500 miles from me, but nonetheless they're out there. Web site is awesome, too. I'm very impressed that it understands that if you put "2003" as the year you're looking for, that it will give you the compatible years, too.

Excellent resource! Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
1fastvx said:
I highly doubt another transmission from another Honda or Acura will bolt up in an E without some form out adapter mount kit. The reason I say this is because I have seen a few discussions on some K engine swap message boards talk about not being able to use a transmission from E with the mount kits needed to bolt up in the older Civics. If the kits dont work then it means that the E's transmissions mounts are different than most K serires transmissions. I have yet to see a comparison myself so I cannot tell how much is really different.
John
It won't fit the standard civic, but the 06 Civic Si, TSX, RSX, Accord, and CRV all have similar transmission cases. They will bolt to the Element engine without issue, but the remaining transmission mounts and shift cable brackets probably would require some adapting.
 

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For anybody considering going to a junkyard for a used transmission, be careful of the price. Majestic Honda (http://www.hondaautomotiveparts.com) lists the complete MT/AWD transmission assembly for $1600. That's new. Some of the salvage yards from the site John linked were asking $1750-1800. A complete used transmission from a scrapper should run no more than $800 or so.
 
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