Update for everyone since I’ve been quiet for a while. Went on vacation and now I’m back.
Before I can put the engine in I need to swap the high pressure power steering line. The fittings are different that connect to the top of the power steering pump between the Element and the TL. That line runs from the power steering pump around the side of the engine bay around to the back where there is a distribution block on the firewall. Excited as I am to put the engine in, it would be a pain to replace the line after doing so.
I found an OEM line on ebay for about 40 shipped. The lines appear to be the same size and the same fitting going into the distribution block. If it’s not I’ll have to cut flare and make a hybrid from both lines - no biggie.
I’ll have to do something similar for the AC line, but that is all at the front of the engine so I’m okay doing it after putting the engine in.
The line will be here next week, then the engine is going in!
I need to join the engine and trans at the same time that I put the engine in because the adapter plate protrudes below the bottom profile of the engine, and I don’t want all that weight resting on the loop going around the starter so once they’re together it has to go in.
I dropped the power steering lines from the Element and TL off at the Hydraulics shop this morning. Turns out the line going into the rack is not only bigger, but the fitting is different as well.
The shop is going to basically replace the entire rubber section after the hardline/sensor on the Element power steering line and attach the TL end to it to make a refurbed hybrid. The Element end that connects to the pump comes straight down, since the line goes across the engine and down to the pump. The TL end is flat, as it runs around the side of the engine/engine bay. I had them add another inch to the hose for play room, and made sure they clock it properly but it should be good to go later today!
Also, I've been working with Don at RPM Systems on mapping out what needs to be done on the harness. He figured out that the 07+ can be made to be PLUG AND PLAY, only needing the C101 plug (big gray plug that connects the engine harness to the dash/chassis harness, along with the D and E plug from the dash/chassis harness that go into the ECU. So I ordered an 07 Honda Fit dashboard harness for cheap that has those two plugs, along with an 07 fit ECU so I can pull the entire header off to make a conversion harness. I cut the C101 plug off the engine harness, and wired it into the TL sub-harness so when i'm done it'll plug into the TL ECU, and right into the Element's dash/chassis harness. Then, the D and E plug from the Element that normally would go into the Element ECU are going into the ECU header, then being rewired to a new D and E plug (from the fit harness), along with wires from the TL Sub-harness to go right into the TL ECU, thus completing the harness work!
My goal was to make this truly plug and play with zero impact to the Element, which I feel i'm achieving. So if I ever want to go back to a k-series engine, i'd just need a new power steering hose and engine harness, but the Element itself is left untouched!
With the power steering line done and back on the car, I can put the engine in!!!
Finally got the engine and transmission mated together. Need to get more specialty hardware to finish bolting it up but the hard part is done. This setup was especially challenging because of the way the starter is mounted. The engine cant sit flat on the floor or on a pallet without resting on the adapter plate. It may not harm it but I’m not taking any chances. Had to hang the engine and roll the transmission over on a stool to get them together. While pushing I was able to jiggle the awd shaft thing which helped the splines feed into the clutch disc. The whole thing felt absolutely ridiculous but it worked lol.
very exciting. all the heavy lifting of big mechanical parts looks like the easy stuff to me when i look at the electrical re pinning. where is the oil filter on the j6? i hate the oil filter location and orientation on the k
It is in the same area (rear left of engine bay) hanging down next to the oil pan and facing DOWN. I hate the oil filter location as well, made it so hard to change it. This should be cake and not have to deal with oil spilt on the axles, subframe every time.
So this swap just got a tiiiny bit more complex. With the transmission mounted, there is a main cap bolt and some block material which prevents the intermediate shaft from going into the transmission. I verified with minitech that I wasn’t crazy and that they encountered the same issue.
So I had to remove the main cap bolt, mark the offending area and break out the grinder yet again. I discussed removing this bolt before doing it with a Honda guru buddy of mine and came to the conclusion that it wouldn’t affect anything. I’ll need to source a shorter bolt to torque it back down. Not thrilled about this but definitely not a show stopper.
So I did a little tonight and put the bolt back in until I can muscle the transmission back on to check the clearance. Not so bad now that I’ve got the engine hoist / stool combo figured out.
Here I was thinking the engine harness would be the most annoying part of this swap lol.
wait, mains bearing cap bolt? so you need to cut away all of the green line? i thought the same thing looking at pics before, the electrical looks like it might be the toughest part but this might have that beat?
i guess make sure that bolt gets a flat mating surface when the grinding is done.
Never knew there were bolts holding the main caps from the side. They have vertical align dowels so things should be fine.
I don’t have to go all the way to the green, I put that there as the absolute maximum needed. I think with what I’ve done so far will clear it, I just need to get the rest of the new length hardware (none was included for mounting the transmission, nor what to expect lol) and make sure I’ve got a new proper length main cap bolt. Not sure if that bolt seals oil in so I may take some extra precautions.
Quick update! So the back of the block had to get shaved to clear the intermediate shaft fully. The axle seal guard that is on the end was what dictated the amount to be shaved.
Had to go down quite a bit that there is now a window into the bell housing lol. Luckily Honda was good about the webbing of the block or I would have had a heart attack. I plan to seal it up once I finish making an adapter plate to mount the shaft to the block. The kit came with one, but the J32a3 block has different mount points so I can’t use it.
Here are some pics:
Preparing for battle:
Some of the shaving done, still needed more:
Don’t be alarmed, it’s just a “window” lol:
Had to shave down some of the webbing and one of the mount points:
Success, but now I have to engineer a mount setup so it sits properly:
Not sure if I’m going to do a single plate or fabricate some brackets...here are my thoughts and crude drawings:
Closer and closer to getting this thing dropped into the engine bay! This is literally the last hurdle. I had to order special length bolts to mount the trans and replace the main cap bolt, but I’ve kept a list of specifications in case anyone would like to do this in the future