Loxy had organised a rolling road day at TDI North and a several weeks ago I put my name down for a run, my car being absolutely standard.
In my garage I had a CPL CAI / CPL Fuel Rail (bling) / RRC / Hondata gasket and Flashpro which I was intending to fit when I had a suitable exhaust & FD2 throttle body. Next thing I know is Sumopower have a sale on and sure enough I have a nice shiny HKS exhaust delivered. A few days later DPG87 puts an FD2 throttle body up for sale, so you guessed it - purchased. I now had all the bits I wanted to put on to the car.
Forward to a few weeks back when we had a mini meet for Colin (Pigdog), his car was having some bodywork upgrades and a few turned up to see the results (unfortunately the car wasn't ready but we had a good little get together). Speaking to Paul @ TDI over what bits I had, he suggested I get them fitted at the rolling road day. Took all of 2 seconds to agree.
5th Nov D-Day
Met up with another Paul (Typesgt4me) at 07.45hrs and we headed down the M6 to TDI, arriving @ 08.10hrs. Ben was just opening up. We had set off early as today was going to be very busy for the TDI lads with 20+ cars going on the dyno + the work on mine; I wanted to make sure that if there were any delays that they weren't down to me.
The car was put on to the rolling road just before 9am to see what it was kicking out standard.
210.9bhp with 147.4lb/ft of torque - good starting point.
The car was then rolled away into another unit and Neil & Ben started work taking off all the old bits and fitting the new. Time to meet a few new faces as everyone arrives for the rolling road day.
The day went very quickly and come dinner time my car was wheeled back out with all the goodies installed; just got to wait for the rolling road to come free so that my car could be tuned.
Somewhere around 16.00hrs the car went back on to the rollers and Paul started weaving his magic. Twenty minutes or so later and there was a problem. Now I'm no expert in modifying cars and tuning engines so I'm giving an overview - the CPL CAI was causing one of the sensors to think that more air was flowing into the engine than expected and as a result the injectors were maxing out at around 6500rpm.
Now I'm not one to get worried easily, but when you see Paul shaking his head and Neil & Ben racing around working on your car, taking bits off and trying other parts etc, you can't help get a little nervous. However, knowing the effort being put in to source the problem and the fact that you know these guys are experts in their field gave me some comfort.
Paul came to the conclusion that the car needed to be MAF tuned (I think I've got that right - I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong). Eitherways at around 17.30hrs Paul started to map the car. By this time there was only myself, Typesgt4me & The Vision left (all Pauls - confusing or what). We decided to leave TDI to it a go and get some grub.
Wondering how the lads at TDI were getting on we returning around 19.45hrs to be greated outside by Lou with the words 'just in time, its sorted'; mega relief!
The car was now putting out...............
226.3bhp & 164lb/ft of torque - Well chuffed
Paul at TDI took the car out for a quick run on the road to check everything was ok then asked me to take it out for a spin. Now anyone who knows the roads around TDI will know they are not ideal for trying out your new mods, however a quick blast revealed a totally different animal............
You look at the base figures and then look at the end figures and you probably think, thats not much of an improvement, but believe you me the difference is like night & day, this car has come alive. I will go into more detail shortly.
After the little spin it was back to TDI, get the painful bit over and done with (payment), thank the lads for their hard work, load up the car with the old bits and head off home.
Now some observations about the car...............
I didn't want the car to be loud when cruising or just pootling around town, several people off the forum had recommened the HKS exhaust as being the ideal choice. I can confirm that sitting in the car it sounds absolutely the same as a stock exhaust, outside there is the slightest change in tone with perhaps a slightly deeper burble when ticking over. The test will be when the missus goes out in it, if she notices a difference then I'll be suprised (and in trouble).
The changes at the front have lead to a small increase in noise coming from the front at tick over; basically it rumbles a bit. First thought it was coming from the exhaust but closer inspection reveals it was from the front not the back (the civic has some really unusual accoustics on the interior).
The car basically sounds, feels and runs just like standard, nice, docile and unassuming when driving normally.
Give the car a wedge of throttle and get in the the VTEC and boy oh boy what a massive rush. The VTEC is set somewhere around 3700 (forgot what
Paul told me last night - it was a long day) and when it comes in the sound from the engine is fantastic. I've been on a track day with Colin (Pigdog) with his HKS RSK fitted and all I can say is the noise on VTEC is as near as I can remember the same (loudness that is)! The car is a totally different animal, and whilst acceleration is smooth, the grunt now available makes the car feel complete; I don't feel that I need to rev the living daylights off it (much as we all like doing so) to overtake, the pickup in acceleration is much lower down the rev range. It is exactly what I wanted and what Honda should have provided in the first place. Like I said before, the figures do not do justice to the transformation of the car.
There are a couple of issues - my oil pressure light doesn't work, Paul @ TDI says Hondata has a fix for this and when he is happy the fix works I will be back to get it sorted. In the meantime I will check the oil more regularly than before (a must on any car let alone the FN2). Cruise control doesn't work, this is not so much of an issue for me personally as I only tend to use it once in a blue moon.
Otherwise I can safely say I am over the moon. I shall be off out shortly for another spin and another mahoosive grin to accompany it!
I'd like to say a few thanks..............
1. To Paul, Neil, Ben & Lou at TDI for all their hard work, not just on my car but throughout the day.
2. To John (Loxy) for organising the event. It was a fantastic day out.
3. To Paul (Typesgt4me) for stashing the exhaust away from the missus.
4. To everyone who wished me luck yesterday.
Sorry if I have gone on a bit, thanks for reading. I'm now off out for a VTEC injection!
: Have attached the rolling road graph showing before and after (forgot when putting original post together).