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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
It has been six month since the start of the build, and with 4000+ miles on the final map, I finally feel ready to post this. Enjoy!

Why?
I felt something was missing from my life, not necessarily a faster car, but something that'll let me prove myself and have fun in the meantime.

Goal
A reliable setup, as cheaply as possible. Decent power gain, but nothing crazy.

Chapter 1 - Choosing a Turbo
I did a lot of reading on turbo builds on the K24Z platform to determine the feasibility of the build, mainly referencing builds on the 9th gen Civic Si forums and UtahTSX's build on Acurazine. Even with these builds as references and knowing that turbo kits from manufactures like PRL exists, I still managed to pick the wrong turbo. :rolleyes: (More on this later)

To maintain my goal of reliability and cost effectiveness, I decided on using an used OEM turbo. Based on housing setup, engine displacement, and power output, I decided on a MHI TD04L-14T from a mid 2000s Volvo 70s series car with the 2.5L T5 engine. It has a 7cm^2 (0.49 A/R) angled exhaust housing with a 3 bolt 3" exhaust outlet, and a T3 bolt pattern round inlet.

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Another benefit of using an OEM turbo is the internal wastegate. This allows for a simpler exhaust setup, which further reduces cost by requiring less work on the custom exhaust.

To be continued...
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Chapter 2 - "Fake Injectors"
By referencing various 9th gen Civic Si builds, it seems like the 1st gen RDX 410cc injectors are the way to go. People claim that they have the best spray pattern out of any OEM or even aftermarket injectors, but what do I know...

To keep the cost down, I initially ordered a set of 4 from eBay with the adapter clips for about $125. The price is good, but not too good to be true. When I got them however, the doubt started. The first thing that I noticed is that one of the injectors had a bit of a bulge in the plastic injector housing. The second thing that I noticed is the scratch marks near the injector nozzles.

After googling fake RDX injectors, all the signs pointed to my bulk packaging injectors as being "fake". These eBay injectors were promptly returned and 4 new injectors were bought directly from Curry Acura at $229. In addition, 4 9th Gen Civic RDX Injector Plug 'N Play Clips were ordered from PRL Motorsports.

Real:
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"Fake":
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The biggest differences between the real ones and the "Fake" ones is that the difference in the text and the O ring color. As seen above, the text "Denso" is much more spaced out on the "Fake" ones compared to the real ones. Also as seen above, the real ones have a green O ring on the nozzle side, where the "Fake" ones have a black O ring.

To be Continued...
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Chapter 3 - Manifold Adapter

While waiting for various parts to come in and funds to gather, I started on what I projected to the be the most time and energy consuming part of the process. From start to finish, it took about 6 weeks.

Since I was running the RV6 PCD and TP at the time, I used my factory cat inlet to copy down the shape and dimensions of the integrated manifold outlet on these Z series engines. The exhaust dimension and the turbo inlet dimensions were ported into CAD and a model of the one piece adapter was created. The dimension and feasibility of the design was confirmed by a 3D print (high in-fill rate) of the adapter.

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The manifold adapter is made from single piece of carbon steel bar. The 1 inch thick bar was purchased from Metal Supermarket at around $25. I originally had wanted this piece to be machined out, but the cost turned out to be quite prohibitive due to the complexity of the port. I was quoted anywhere between $800 and $1400. So for the next five weeks, I spent a few hours each week to slowly cut out everything by hand. The through cuts were done on my drill press, and all the angled cuts were done with a Dremel and cutting wheels.
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The result is not bad. I had the mating surfaces resurfaced and the seal is perfect. Although, if anyone wants to help me out and create a copy with a CNC at a lowish cost, I'd really appreciated it.

To be continued...
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Chapter 4 - Exhaust

The TD04L-14t that I'm using has a 7cm^2 angled housing with a 3" outlet. So naturally the turbo back is a 3". Initially, I wanted to do a reducer immediately to 2.5" for clearance in the engine bay, but that turned out to not be necessary. The exhaust is entirely custom, fabricated by Devon Green in Akron, Ohio. The flex pipe with interlocking liner is from Vibrant, the two mandrel bends were from Stainless Bros. The exhaust was made out of 304SS throughout for durability and looks.

The initial mock up was completed using the factory cat and pre-cat and a poplar board. The turbo was mounted to the board using the verification 3D print from the last chapter, as at this point, I was still working on finishing the actual adapter itself. The various sections of pipes were connected together using hot glue. The hot glue was just enough to keep the pieces together, but won't leave any residues that prevents a clean weld. With the hot glue generating a general profile, Devon was able to tack the exhaust together so I can complete a test fit on the car.

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The test fit didn't turn out that well. I was close, but not close enough. We ended up cutting up most of the joints and doing a direct fit on the car, piece by piece.

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As seen above, there are a couple of brackets that are in very close proximity to the exhaust on the back side of the engine. Those were removed to provide more clearance at a later date. The brackets were there to hold the downstream O2 sensor connector. With an O2 sensor wiring extension, I was able to reroute the wiring and avoid using that bracket.

As seen in the mock up, I had the turbo-back reduced to a 2.5" at the end to meet the factory cat-back. Devon suggested that we modify the inlet of the factory cat-back to using a 3" to 2" reducer instead of the factory 2.5" to 2" reducer. This way, when I'm ready for a 3" cat-back, I don't have to touch the turbo-back again.

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One other thing to talk about here is that the RV6 PCD + TP can still be used in place of the turbo setup if ever needed without further modification.

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Devon's work really speaks for itself here. The weld quality is exceptional, just as good, if not better than RV6's PCD and TP.

To be continued...
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Chapter 5 - Oil Feed

For oil supply, I decided to use a Mishimoto sandwich plate. The plate is good at supplying the oil (its main job), but sucked at everything else.

First, the plate was not a direct fit. The oil filter mount on the Accord has a guard on top that prevent the plate from sitting on the mating surface. This guard was very carefully trimmed off using a Dremel and a cutting wheel. All the ports were tapped off, and extra tape was used on the mating surface to prevent accidental scuffing.

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Second, the plate itself was great in quality, but the seal that they used was not so much. Despite tightening it down to spec, the seal between the plate an the oil filter mounted kept on leaking. The solution is to use some kind of gasket sealer. I used the Edelbrock gasket sealer, it works pretty well. The oil filter is still kind of moist, but at least it's not leaving a small puddle of oil wherever I idle.

Yes, it is sitting perfectly flush on the mating surface, there is clearly visible gap between where the guard used to be and body of the plate. I'm not the only person that has had this specific problem. So Mishimoto, if you are reading this, fix it!

To be continued...
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Chapter 6 - Spark Plugs

The spark plugs chosen were a set of NGK ILKR8E6. These laser iridium plugs were originally meant for the EVO X. They have the exact same spec as the OEM plugs, except these have a 0.024" gap instead of the 0.044" gap. Same M12x1.25 thread, same 5K ohm resistance, and the same 26.5mm reach.

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To be continued...
 

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123 Posts
Can't wait to see more, I went the manifold flange adapter route when I tried to do K16 turbos from a Porsche on my B5 Audi. The adapters worked great, the turbos were just pretty big. For a drill press and some dremeling that looks awesome! Excited to see how this turns out and if you do end up producing or even releasing the measurements of the flange. For cost of course. It would be a much better plan for those who aren't looking to drop the money on a cast PRL one, when realistically this is all you need. I don't care for it to be externally gated. I am fine with internal gate and an MBC...
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Chapter 7 - The Splurge

One trip to Summit Racing later, I have most of the parts that I needed. Shout out to Summit Racing for having such helpful and experienced staff to help me choose the parts that I needed. After all, this is an amateur attempting a pro level project, it is a learning process every step that I take.

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* Not all parts used are present here

To be continued...
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Excited to see how this turns out and if you do end up producing or even releasing the measurements of the flange.
I probably will end up releasing the measurements, the drawings, and the STL file. I will most likely release two versions, a version for the TD04L-14t, and a version to the standard T3 flanges. The two shares the same bolt pattern, so all I have to tweak is the turbo inlet side opening. Also, I've been eyeing the Garrett GT3076R, so a T3 version is under serious consideration.

As of right now, I'm not ruling out commercializing the flange and potentially the exhaust just because of how well this has turned out so far.
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Chapter 8 - Fuel Pump

Fuel pump chosen was a DeatschWerks DW65c, with a 265lph flow rate at 40psi. The specific part number is 9-651-1026, it is a drop in kit for the 9th gen Civic Si. This does fit the Accord and TSX fuel sending units, but with a small modification required. In the image below, the clips circled in red needs to be cut in order to fit.
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To reduce the amount of time that the fuel tank is open, I bought a used fuel sending unit from eBay for $25, thoroughly cleaned the unit, and installed the new pump ahead of time. The backseat is easily removed by un-clipping two clips and removing the seat cushion bolt. The silver cover is easily removed by twisting the four black retainers.

The hard part here is the retaining ring that keeping the fuel tank sealed against the fuel sending unit. I used a very large channellock pliers to get a hold of the ring at the ribs (opposing), and used an adjustable wrench on the body of the channellock pliers to increase the torque applied. Another thing to make sure here is to clean the top of the sending unit and ring to prevent contaminants from falling into the tank.

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To be continued...
 

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2 Posts
Nice! I'm looking forward to read your build... I have K24Z3 EX-L, sedan, AT, and I'm planing to turbo it as well. Is your car AT or MT? And how psi do you boost it? (sorry for my bad english, I am from Bulgaria).
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Is your car AT or MT? And how psi do you boost it?
It's an AT. 8PSI. Keep reading and I'll explain why 8PSI was chosen and why the turbo is not the best one in the up coming weeks.
 

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Good find on the pump basket. I know turboing it is a lot of work especially in this package. From reading your posts, I think somewhere you knew that turbo was going to be an oddball. GT30 should be a good in between, I think I sized one when I was working on one for my 4200 atlas motor, the 28 was too small and would be too much too low and the GT30 wouldn't just be a "vtec" turbo(I forgot the exact specs and sizes the calculator spit out though). I'm cool with it as long as it isn't a Precision lol. I like the intercooler though, where is that from? Doesn't look like your common ebay find!
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Good find on the pump basket. I know turboing it is a lot of work especially in this package. From reading your posts, I think somewhere you knew that turbo was going to be an oddball. GT30 should be a good in between, I think I sized one when I was working on one for my 4200 atlas motor, the 28 was too small and would be too much too low and the GT30 wouldn't just be a "vtec" turbo(I forgot the exact specs and sizes the calculator spit out though). I'm cool with it as long as it isn't a Precision lol. I like the intercooler though, where is that from? Doesn't look like your common ebay find!
So I know I'm not even finished this build thread yet, but I will be moving onto a Garrett GT3076R very soon. I picked one up in pristine condition for $250 this past weekend. It is a FullRace one with the Mazda Speed3 turbine housing (I bought an internally wastegated T3 housing on the side to replace the Mazda housing).

The intercooler in the picture is an EcoBoost Mustang intercooler (it was very cheap and very new, didn't even have any bent cooling fins). But I ended up not using that due to some clearance issues.
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Chapter 9 - Oil Lines:
The oil supply comes from the sandwich plate, and runs to the turbo oil inlet through a 4AN line. No external restrictor was used as the turbo has one built in. That and the fact that the turbo was a journal bearing turbo, I felt a bit of leniency was okay. The line is as follows:
Sandwich Plate > 1/8" npt to 4AN Adapter > 90 Degree 4AN end fitting > 4AN line > 45 Degree 4AN end fitting > 4AN to M12x1.25 Adapter > Turbo

The oil drain line turned out to be a bit tricky. The sandwich plate brings the oil filter closer to the ground quite a bit, so the oil filter now sits directly in front of the oil drain plug. This prevents the most common adapters and fittings from being able to fit in the tiny space between the oil filter and the pan. After quite a bit of trial and error, the only fitting that I found to fit is a 90 degree direct elbow (M14X1.25 to 8AN). Part Number: AT949065ERL

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The oil drain line is as follows:
Turbo> 10AN drain flange > Straight 10AN end fitting > 10AN line > 45 degree 10AN end fitting > 10AN to 8AN adapter > 8AN to M14x1.25 direct 90 degree elbow > Oil pan drain plug hole.

As is most things in this build, the line was self assembled. The most difficult part was getting the AN line to fit into the end fitting. The stainless braiding has a tendency of fraying after being cut, and thus will not fit into the end fittings correctly. I know there are many different methods out there, but the one that we found to be best is to first wrap the line with a zip tie, then cut the line with a dremel cutting wheel, and slide the line into the end fitting with the zip tie butting up to the end fitting. Some care are also needed when tightening the end fittings. On one of the 4AN end fittings, we either cross threaded it or over tightened it and broke the fitting entirely. This resulted in a day worth of delay in the assembly process.

As is most things in this build, the parts came from Summit Racing and are largely Vibrant performance, Summit racing, or Earl's performance brand products

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To be continued...
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Chapter 10 - Water Lines:

Since this is a water cooled turbo, coolant lines are needed in addition to oil lines. The coolant was intercepted just after the throttle body and before the return line. The line is fairly small, but seems adequate in flow. More importantly, the heated water from the turbo is going into the return line directly, thus prevent over heating any components that may need the coolant after.

On the turbo side, the coolant in/out used a M12x1.25 to 6AN banjo. Initially, a section of 6AN line was also used as the banjo bolt and the 6 AN to 1/2" barb all came from a kit. But we found out the hard way that the cheap 6AN line used plastic as the inner liner when we tried to flex it and snapped it causing a leak. Thus the 6AN line was eliminated entirely. The coolant line is as follows:

Throttle body > 1/4" to 3/8" > 3/8" coolant line > 3/8" to 1/2" > 1/2" coolant line > 1/2" barb to 6AN > 6AN to M12x1.25 banjo > Turbo

The coolant in line is place in the lower spot while the out line is placed in the upper spot on the turbo. I won't explain the whole mechanism here since it' can be easily looked up, but physics!

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To be continued...
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Chapter 11 - BOV and Wastegate

As it sits right now, the car uses the original recirculating BOV that came with the turbo and a TRITDT wastegate actuator.

The original BOV seems to work really well for the current setup, however, it does stick once in a while (maybe 1 out of 100 times). I tried to remediate it by trying a different BOV, but I just couldn't find the correct spring weight even with the many options that was given. So I decided to just save my money and deal with this very minor issue.

Since I decided to not use a boost controller, I had to get an aftermarket wastegate actuator so I can adjust the boost pressure (the original actuator was a 4-5lb spring, I'm current running the 1bar spring). The TRITDT wastegate actuator is part was a kit that was suppose to fit the TD04 that I have. However, the mounting bracket given did not fit the TD04l-14t. I took the stock actuator, cut the drum that contained the diaphragm and the piston, and drilled holes on the stock bracket to allow the new actuator to fit.

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I chose to not use a boost controller because I'm cheap. I did consider a manual boost controller, but none of them seem to have good reviews, not even brand name ones like Turbosmart. The actuator is very easily accessible, and with the 8 springs that came with the kit, it wasn't difficult to find and adjust to the right setting.

To be continued...
 

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Do you think it's possible to use slightly larger turbo with external wastegate like the mak speed one with 44mm tial so the engine doesn't choke at high volume on the exhaust side but still start to spool before 2500?
 

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Turbocharged
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825 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Do you think it's possible to use slightly larger turbo with external wastegate like the mak speed one with 44mm tial so the engine doesn't choke at high volume on the exhaust side but still start to spool before 2500?
I think so. Logically it makes sense.

Could you link the Makspeed one? I'm not sure what turbo/kit you are referring to here.
 
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