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· Registered
87 Posts
LS/VTEC Information:

**Things You'll Need for the Setup***
You will need atleast the following...
-Head Info
You must use a B-series DOHC VTEC head. A Prelude H-series head will NOT work.
You can choose a head from the following list by code....

--B16a1: thiss engine came in the 89-91 civic SiR and the Integra XSi in Japan. This is the easiest motor/head to use for 4th Gen civic (EF) swaps.
--B16a2/3: thiss USDM motor came in in the 94-97 DelSol (a3) and is still available in the 99+ Civic Si (a2). It was also available in Japan from 92+ in the Civic with 170hp compared to the USDM models' 160hp. It has upgraded pistons and slightly more aggressive cams when compared to the B16a1.
--B17a: came in the 92-93 USDM Integra GSR. This motor is kinda rare as it was only sold in 92 and 93, additionally it was only available to the US market. It is overall quite similar to the B16a engine with the exception that it is slightly stroked to achieve the 1700cc's. The B16a and B17a heads are VERY similar.
--B18c1: thiss came in the 94+ Integra GSR. A good head for raising compression due to its smaller combustion chambers(than the B16a), however it uses the dual-stage intake manifold which some people do not like and it is usually hard to find.
--B18c5: bettter know as the Type R or ITR. This head is very similar to the B16a head with the exception of mild port work and upgraded internals(ie. cams, valve springs, valves). Overall this is a strong engine and if you were ever to come by one, you should skip going LS/VTEC altogether because of its similar power potential.
--B16b: the Civic Type R or CTR. This engine is mainly a destroked ITR motor with further upgraded internals than the ITR(ie. high-comp pistons, more aggressive intake cam). This head most closely resembles the ITR head.

Either way, get the head of your choosing welded and machined by a machine shop. This involves welding the vtec oil galley closed and then decking the head to assure a flat surface. You must do this because the LS block does not have this galley as it was not originally intended as a VTEC engine. Welding and machining this oil galley closed will keep oil from sitting on the headgasket which could lead to a potential leak.

-New timing belt
This all depends on the water pump you go with. You 'SHOULD' go with the B16a/B18C water pump as it is superior to the B18a/b pump and will provide more cooling to the now higher revving motor setup. Either way if you use the B16a/B18C pump, then you should use the GSR timing belt. Why? Because the b16/B18c water pumps have more teeth on them which will cause the LS timing belt to misalign the crank with the respect to the cam gears at TDC. Thus if you use the LS water pump, then you should use the LS timing belt as the water pump has fewer teeth. This will assure that everything lines up properly at TDC.
So once again...
B16/B18c Water Pump ------> B18c Timing Belt
B18a/B18b Water Pump -----> B18a/B18b Timing Belt
**IMPORTANT** The B16a timing belt will NOT WORK with an LS/VTEC setup. I've tried myself on my own setup and it WONT WORK. The B16 block is physically 8mm shorter than the B18a/B18b block resulting in the inability to use the B16 timing belt in an LS/VTEC setup. Dont waste your time and money with this belt for it simply wont work.

-ECU Choiices
This will really depend on the year of car you are swapping into, AND how you want everything to work. Here are a few ECU options.
Option 1. For all of you 92-95 civic owners.
-IF you are swapping into a 92-95 (aka EGs) civic then you can have your stock P28 ECU chipped to run a DOHC VTEC ECU Program. This works very well and its cheaper than getting another ECU(unless you are getting the ECU included with a swap/motor purchase). I think JDMHondaParts does this, and if not you can also try Locash Racing
Option 2. For all of you 88-91 civic owners.
-There are a two ways that this can be done(maybe more). You can either use a b16a1 ECU which will work okay especially since it will take care of the vtec activation for you. OR you can use 90-91 Integra ECU with a shift light or rpm activated switch to operate the vtec solenoid. I dont recommend doing this as the Integra ECU reportedly does NOT plug into the EF harness like the B16a1 ECUs do just making the swap harder but you do what you have to when you need your car running ASAP.
Option 3. For all of you 96+ civic owners
All I can tell you is that you need to run ECU's within your generation. 6G civics(aka EKs) will need to run 96+ GSR ECUs OR 96+ B16a ECUs as far as i know due to the differences between OBD 1 and OBD 2.

For more information on ECU's, visit our reference section:

-External Oil Line
You will need an oil line running from the back of the block to somewhere on the head. This will substitute for the vtec oil galley which raises the oil pressure once vtec hits, to about 55psi.
Tap the block where the oil pressure sensor is on the back of the block with a 1/8" tap. Now here is where a few options come in.
Method 1. **Do this only to get the engine running if you dont have the funds or time to run stainless lines!**

(1) T-fitting with ONE Female and TWO Male thread sections with 1/8" NPT threads all the way around
(1) 90 Degree bent elbow fitting with an 1/8" NPT male thread
(1) Straight fitting with 1/8" NPT male thread
AND 3 feet of 3/8" fuel line for the hose which you can cut to fit.
(all parts above can be purchased at Pep Boys)


What you do is screw the t-fitting into the block. Use teflon tape to seal the piece at the block. Then screw the elbow fitting into the end of the T-fitting and use more teflon tape to seal. Now you can screw the Oil Pressure Sensor into the top of the T-fitting and again seal it with teflon. From hear you can run a rubber fuel line to the fitting in the head.
You can tap the head just under the water neck. This works well but you might need to slightly modify the water neck to make room for the fitting. Again use the 1/8" NPT tap. Now screw the straight piece into the head and seal it. Here you can then run the 3/8" fuel line to the elbow piece at the block and use hose clamps to clamp it off.

Draw Backs to Method 1
Reason 1. Running the hose clamps on the fuel line and fittings, two times the clamps have loosened causing an oil leak on my own setup. I havent had the problem however, since re-tightening the clamps.
Reason 2. There is a possibility that the t fitting will break due to stress. This would be a nice thing to avoid which is why I recommend stainless braided hoses and fittings.

-Run Stainless Steel Braided hoses and fittings which can all be purchased through Summit Racing
. But use -4AN Line with 1/8" NPT threaded fittings. Here is how they SHOULD be run.
-Use a straight piece at the block thiss time and then run into the braided line. take this line to the firewall bolt it up somewhere and THEN use a T-fitting. There you can screw in the Oil Pressure Sensor and run the Stainless line to the head where another piece will sit. THIS will prevent BOTH of the above problems from happening to you.

-Head Gasket
You need to use the B18a/B18b head gasket. Because the B18a/B18b block doesnt have the vtec oil galley like the b16a and b18c heads do, it can cause a potential oil leak if you use the vtec head gasket. Stay away from them and run the LS gasket instead.

-DOHC VTEC Head Bolts
GSR or B16a bolts will work, but old bolts can break after repeated use so recommend upgrading to new factory OEM bolts OR ARP bolts.

**Suggested** -Upgrade the water pump to a b16/b18c uunit
-Balance the rotating assembly(ie. crannk, crank pulley, and flywheel)
-Replace the main and rod bearings
-Replace all gaskets with new ones(ie. head gasket, valve cover gaskets, intake manifold, and oil pan)

***Recommended*** If you plan on going NA, then GET RID of the POS LS pistons as your CR will only be around 9.6:1(with a b16a head) and the LS pistons have hardly any valve reliefs at all meaning you cant run larger cams(Toda, JUN) like you will want to eventually because of piston to valve contact which can result. Otherwise this might be a nice build for a low boosted turbo setup.

->Piston INFO
Here are a few Compression Ratios relating to B16a heads on LS/VTECs courtesy of some calculating done by David Newman of the Hybrid Boards in an email he sent me...
"Well, first off, with what I've figured out in the past, compression ratios go for the following with LS/VTEC motors:

9.6:1 - P74 LS Pistons
10.0:1 - P72 GSR Pistons
10.8:1 - P73 US ITR Pistons
11.0:1 - P73 JDM ITR Pistons
11.5:1 - PR3 Pistons
11.7:1 - P30 Pistons
12.4:1 - CTR Pistons

And that is with a 'stock' B18A/B block using B18A/B rods, and any B16A head (compression ratios between the different B16A generation heads are very nominal)."

I strongly encourage experienced engine builders to this swap only.

· Registered
87 Posts
First some basics:

Either the Ls block or the CRV block can be found at a junkyard. Call around and look. They arent that hard to find. Especially the ls blocks. Dime a dozen. Look to pay about 250-300 for the ls block.or about 800-1000 for the CRV block. If you are going to resleeve the ls block then obviously it doesnt pay to buy the crv block. Save some money and buy me something.

The benefit of the CRV block over the LS block is the size. The cranks are IDENTICAL but the b20 (crv) has an 84 mm bore as opposed to a 81 mm bore that the ls block has. One issue i see people say alot is "Does it matter the mileage of my motor". Not really no. You are going to rip it apart, replace everything and put it back together anyway. The only thing that will really matter in this issue is the condition of the cylinder walls. Even if in bad shape however they can be bored then honed and then are ready to go. CRV block are kinda tricky though. JE only makes 84mm and 85mm pistons. This means unless the block is practically brand new (like under 15k on it) you will have to bore it 40 thousandths (spelling?) over if you intend on using these products. Ls blocks are basically always ok, unless ya spun a bearing in which case dont even bother with the thing. A bore and a Hone will fix most problems.

The advantage of the LS block is that there is a vast array of Honda pistons you can use. CTR, JDM ITR and USDM ITR all make good canidates. These are cheap (330 or so with rings, most of the time they are cheaper) and since honda is so damn cool.....they make oversized. So get this one: buy a used ls block at the junkyard. Bore it over and then use CTR pistons along with the stock ls everything else and ya done! Thanks honda!

But.....CRV blocks are a lil different and here is why they more money. Honda never intended on making the b20 a high performance motor. So why make pistons that are the same bore? They dont really. Just stock B20 pistons. which yield a stupid low CR. And also the valve reliefs on the stock CRV pistons are not big enough to accept the valves of VTEC heads. So if using larger cams you cant really play with the cam gears too much. or else problems will occur. So what do you do? Buy aftermarket right?!? Ok so ya just spent between 450-500 on cant use those things on stock rods! So ya buy aftermarket again! another 350 or so. So right away thats 800-900 dollars more then the
Ls block...But you WILL HAVE MORE POWER!

Now as for parts you will need with either motor. These are NEEDS not WANTS. They are a part of either build and will not be listed in the motors simply because we will assume you will get them.
1. New rod and main bearings. Please dont ask what kind ya need. they are different for every motor.
2. New head gasket, Oil pan gasket, rear main seal, Oil return gasket, oil filter
3. Thrust washers
4. fittings for running the external oil line.
5. You must have the entire rotating assembly balanced!!!!!!!
6. New VTEC Water pump.
7. New VTEC oil pump.
8. New VTEC Timing belt.
9. BE SURE TO MATCH THE WATER PUMP AND TIMING BELT. VTEC=VTEC and Non-vtec=Non-vtec. otherwise your car will
die a very painfull death.!
10. We both prefer ARP bolts to stock. Stock is usable but ARP is cheap insurance.

We also assume that you have bolt-ons already. Intake, Header with a 2.5 inch collector and a good exaust.
If you dont have these.....get them.....NOW!

Like said above. We will assume that all the motors being built will use this stuff...hence: we will not list these parts in the total build up parts list.


LSVTEC block MILD: (250)
CTR/TYPE-R pistons (330)
LS rods

LSVTEC block MEDIUM: (250)
JE 11.5 pistons (Ross also make pistons for this application) (485)
EAGLE rods (350)

LSVTEC bock WILD: (250)
Resleeve with Golden Eagle Sleeves 85 MM bore (1000)
JE 12.5/13.0 pistons (Ross also will do) (485)
CROWER connecting rods (500)

B20VTEC block MILD: (900)
Stock B20 pistons
Stock rods

B20VTEC block MEDUIM: (900)
JE 11.5 or 12.5 pistons (485)
EAGLE rods (350)

B20VTEC block WILD: (900)
Custom 12.5/13.0 Pistons (500)
95 mm Crank (800???)
Deck Plate (machine shop cost)


Type-R head with skunk2 stage 1 cams, skunk2 cam gears.
($800-$1200 full head, $600 for cams, 200 for gears)

SI head with skunk2 stage 1 cams OR JUN type 2, Type-R Valve Train, Skunk2 cam gears OR JUN cam gears, Type-r Inner and Outer springs w/ retainers .
($400-$600 for head, $600 skunk2 cams / $800 for JUN type 2, $200 for Skunk2 cam gears / JUN cam gears?, Type-R valve train $350)

GSR head: Similar as SI head

Type-R head with skunk2 stage 2 OR JUN type 3, Skunk2 valve train OR Port flow INNER-OUTER valve springs TI Titanium Retainers OR JUN valve train, Skunk2 valves, Skunk2 cam gears OR JUN cam gears .
($800-$1200 full head, $650 for Skunk2 cams / $850 for JUN 3 cams, $440 skunk2 valve train / $380 JUN valve train, $200 Skunk2 cam gears / JUN cam gears?

SI Head: ($400-$600 for the head) Similar to Type-R setup

GSR Head: ($400-$600 for the head) Similar to Type-R setup

GSR head with TODA SPEC C cams, TODA cam gears, TODA springs, titanium retainers, TODA Individual throttle body / or TWM I.T.B.
($400-$600 for the head, $1900 for TODA Head package includes SPEC C cams-cam gears-valve train, $2500 for TODA Individual Throttle Body, $2000 for TWM Individual Throttle Body

SI head: Similar to GSR setup

TYPE-R head: Similar to GSR setup (add an extra 300-500 bucks for the head if purchased seperatly)

Tranny Info for Frankenstein motors

For the most part any GSR or Type R tranny is good for these motor's. The B16 tranny is not as strong as these. The differential is actually physically smaller then on these trannies. This could be due to the smaller motor, cost cutting....whatever the case may be. I dont trust it.
I broke mine on street tires and have seen many others do the same. Yes it will work. Yes it will bolt up...But i wouldnt use it.....Unless you have too. That tranny with a Quaife lsd would be good. The gearing in that and the ITR are the same so it would be ok. for performance.
But still why bother.......just get a 1.8 tranny!

DECENT setup for the street: (500-600)
Any GSR or Type R tranny

NICE setup for street: (1700)
GSR tranny
Quaife LSD
JDM Final Drive
JDM ITR Tranny with 4.785 FD

SWEET setup for the street: (2600)
Type R tranny
Quaife LSD
JDM Final drive

HOLY GOD setup for the street: (3200)
Type R tranny
Quaife LSD
ATS 4.929 Final Drive
Gsr 5th gear

For an all out track car i would would like this setup most: (4000 +)
Type R tranny
Quaife 5.1 Final Drive
Spool differential
Custom Kaaz Gearing

ECU Setups for Frank motors

Many people think you need Hondata or a standalone system to go fast. YOU DONT. Plenty of people have gone VERY VERY fast with a regular chipped ecu. Here is an idea of some programs you can get to help you tune your new beast. We will assume the car is 92-00 so we will base all the
ECU's on a P-28 basis.

GREAT setup for the street: (550)
P28 rechipped with a JDM B16 proggy with a higher rev limit.
Many people dount this setup because it is a "stock" program. DONT. This is a great setup, and when
paired with the VAFC provides very good tunability and since it is a stock program it is much less prone to detonation for timing reasons. There are a few people going very fast with this setup.....some are even on this message forum. Our pro car at is another.

ANOTHER setup for the street: (500)
P28 with hondata
Many people call Hondata standalone. I dont. Neither does Naspirated. If it was, then the stock ecu wouldnt be there. Notice how i didnt say this is a better setup. I dont think it is. Maybe thats because i like to change on the fly. Maybe i dont like burning chips. Whatever the case maybe. Hondata gives a great product for what ya pay. It is a stock ecu that you have control of. Period. I dont see what else to call it.

BEST SETUP FOR ANYTHING: (2050 with everything)
Accel DFI 7.0
Look at what the pro's use. The new DFI is simply amazing.
Speedpro is also another option. Although i dont think it is as good as DFI.

Fuel setups for Frank Motors

Fuel systems are actually pretty easy with these motors. They arent that hard to figure out.

BASIC setup for Ls/Vtec: (550)
RC 270 cc injectors
Holley 190 fuel pump
adjustable FPR with gauge

BIG setup for Ls/Vtec: (550-600)
RC 310 cc injectors
Holley 255 pump
adjustable FPR with gauge

BASIC setup for CRVTEC: (550-600)
RC 310 cc injectors
Holley 255 pump
adjustable FPR with gauge

BIG setup for CRVTEC: (600)
RC 370 cc injectors
Holley 255 pump
adjustable FPR

If doing ITB then the kit will come with an adjustable FPR and 440 cc Injectors.

· Registered
264 Posts
is it the way the maifold is that makes the GSR head not better than the B16A?....

cuz the GSR has a higher compression and with the SKUNK2 manifold, it would breath better than the B16A....

correct me if i am wrong

· Registered
868 Posts
All that information sounds good, but one thing that you failed to mention was that using the B16B (CTR, PCT..whatever you prefer to call them) will give you a very high compression ratio for the street. 12.4:1 is very risky to run on 93 Octane, right? I am going to do the LSVTEC setup soon, hopefully, and I will use my JDM P30 pistons whcih will give me a slightly milder 11.7:1 CR which 93 Octane can handle. I wouldn't suggest getting too aggresive with the compression unless you plan on keeping a bottle of octane booster in your car. And I believe in CA the highest pump gas is 91 octance, corret? Just be careful and do your homework before you decide on pistons for your block.

LS VTEC Information
B20 VTEC Information

· Registered
2,575 Posts
you can also retard the timing if knocking is apparent....but true 11:1 - 11:5 is good enough for daily driving pump gas. Anything more and it becomes a hassle

· Registered
46 Posts
b16 head
je high compr pistons
eagle rods
type-r intake manifold
si tranny w/ lsd
mugen chipped p28 ecu
stock header
stock exhaust

need to redo my fuel management...fpr, bigger injectors, etc..timing is retarded

and no problems running on pump gas at high compression(knock on wood)

· Registered
506 Posts
PPen131 said:
ttt, this should be a sticky
theres a link in the other sticky, maybe I'll make this one a sticky and add the links from the other one tomorrow

· Registered
475 Posts
ive got a 1990 teg 4door, an was wonderin what ecu i might have to use to do the lsvtec. since the block being a obd1. an im runnin bout 9:5.1 for turbo bout 10-12 psi on 93 octane.?? this is prob stupid right here but couldnt you tap the block for oil squirters to squirt the pistons with oil? make your pistons last long?? subydude616 is my aim
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