bluefalcon_fk8

BlueFalcon

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Hello all,

Decided to share some of my past modifications, current projects, and future changes to my 2019 ABM Civic Type R.

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I would like to have started posting and sharing from the first time that I put a wrench to the car, but rarely found the time to finish all of the work, before I had to drop it down and drive it away- let alone collecting photos, grappling with products, writing reviews, etc.

I'm not going to post everything that I've added or changed all at once. Instead, I'll try to keep it concise and add to the thread individually, and in order, as I tackled each of the projects- big or small. That should bring it up to date, and then I can move forward from that point- so please bear with me.

I'm going to add the following list of thread pages/links for reference to the posts that I make regarding the car:

  • Acuity Stage 3 shift assembly and Titanium Boot Collar install - Post #2, Page 1.
  • Acuity Pedal Relocation Bracket install - Post #3, Page 1.
  • FK2 Type R wheel. Part number: 42700-TV8-E93 - Post #4, Page 1
  • Carbing LHD Steel Strut Tower Bar - Post #5, Page 1
  • Acuity Shifter Cable Bushing install, Amsoil MTF change - Post #6, Page 1

One quick comment on product review/impressions: in the event that I encounter a less than satisfactory product or service, I'd prefer to share that honestly. That being said, my intention isn't to unnecessarily trash a company or person- but I do believe that honest reviews, and not social media promotion, is important to the community, and not something that I seem to find often nowadays. I think that constructive criticism is important to both businesses and end-users.

Okay, with that all laid out, here we go!
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BlueFalcon

BlueFalcon

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This was the first change that I made to the car... err, I think... Hasn't been that long now, but the past year has been a blur.

My modification "style" involves a search for quality products that make a real difference to the drive characteristics of the car, and I'll usually try to complement that priority with a highly aesthetic and well-finished piece, when available. In other words, I want it to do something, first and foremost, and I'll try to splurge and get the best looking or highest quality finish when I can.

I have owned many Hondas over the years, but I have to admit that I think that this car has the worst gearbox of any of them. Really disappointing, and I really wanted to overlook the sloppiness and crunchy shifts- but it needed help. I'm still somewhat convinced that I have a junky set of cables, or at least the gate cable is borderline faulty. Funny that in all of the thread posts about 2nd gear crunch and what-not, I rarely saw anyone post about the set of cables. Everyone seemed to be defaulting to shift knob changes and what not. I decided to start down a similar path, and replace the cables as a last resort.

Enter the Acuity Stage 3 shift assembly, titanium boot collar, and added shift bushing kit.
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First note on this stuff- Acuity has a very consumer-friendly approach to their product offering, email communication, etc. They have a well organized list of installation instructions in PDF format on the site, and video offerings that function as a complete walkthrough on YouTube and such. This made the install total cake, as it's all laid out for you, in whichever format you prefer. No guesswork whatsoever- which is what I usually brace for.

Here are a couple of shots from the install itself-

If you don't already have a kit like this in the photo- it's absolutely worth the $20 on Amazon to pick one up! I find a use for this stuff all the time. You can pick up trim tools like this from Acuity too, but you can't go wrong with a whole set, with a case, for twenty bucks. In addition to blue plastic, I strongly recommend a set of seal-removal tools. This flat pick-style kit is another Amazon buy on the cheap. I swear I find a use for these things just about every time I work on the car. This combo of tools is also super helpful when pulling dreaded plastic pop clips, or pushing tabs to remove the bumper, etc. Get yo'self some!
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Cables in the console- easy to reach and move around. Some of the wiring in/on this car is not as easy to manipulate.
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Here is the console deconstructed. Very simple, just need to be cautious when prying the plastic pieces. Easy to deform the edges- but much safer with the pry tools.
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Shift assembly installed- be cautious with your shift cables. Avoid excessive bending or twisting of the cable when manipulating.
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Too bad the assembly is hidden beneath all the plastic and boot- but I had to stick the titanium collar on there for some aesthetic appeal!
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Notes: A small torque wrench is needed that will do less than 20lbft. Some of the torque requirements are in the 7lbft range, if I remember correctly. I used small hex socket set, rather than Allen keys, and was able to complete the install with no problems, but some space is limited when using the sockets. Install is otherwise very straightforward- no real need to go beyond what you'll find in Acuity's online installation directions. If you do run into a problem, they seem to be very responsive and willing to help.

I initially set the assembly to the narrowest gate, highest vertical shift position, and tightened everything to spec. Shift feel is great, and much improved. This won't save you from crunchy gear issues per se, but it firmly engages and reduces the slop of the stock shifter. I will say that it's not for the lazy- at least not with the settings in the more aggressive ranges. I prefer a precise driving experience, even if that means that I sacrifice some convenience as a daily.

I'll cover the shift cable bushing install in a following post, since I didn't pop those in at this point. Feel free to ask me about the install for this and other posts upcoming. If you're trying to prepare for an install, stuck on something, etc., I might have already been there. I'll try to help as I can.
 
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BlueFalcon

BlueFalcon

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Okay, so I forgot that the first thing I installed on the car was the Acuity Pedal Relocation Bracket. Oop. Was sure I would forget something!

The accelerator is weirdly recessed on this car- or maybe it's just me. Ever turn off the rev-match and heel-toe this car? Right. Added the pedal relocation bracket to bring it forward and reduce the distance from brake to gas. I experimented with the three different positions that are available when you attach the stock pedal assembly to the unit. I really like the decreased kick distance of the bracket, but it definitely reduces comfort when cruising- at least given how I'm sized and my seating position. I can no longer relax my whole leg and foot, as I have to pull my heel and knee closer to seat to avoid over-throttling the accelerator. If you prefer to stretch out on your daily drive, this might not be the modification for you. It does cause fatigue on long drives. Not rush-hour friendly!

Here is a photo of the bracket in the well- by attaching the stock pedal assembly to the bolt holes labelled "A" through "C", you can achieve different pedal positions that suit your driving needs.
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Notes:
Nothing out of the ordinary here. Super straightforward. Best practice is to disconnect the battery, because it involves pulling the electrical connector to the pedal. Your dash will light up like it's testing every bulb in the console; just in case you've not yet experienced that. No big deal, it will clear after you drive the car, turn off, and restart on your next drive.

Make sure to get a long extension for your torque wrench, and small sockets (10-14mm range), and I believe that it might require a hex socket for the Acuity provided hardware. Sorry, it's been a bit since I installed this piece. As with the Acuity Shift Assembly, the PDF installation notes are excellent.
 
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BlueFalcon

BlueFalcon

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Picked up Honda's 19" OEM wheel for the FK2 Type R from Tegiwa.

Part number: 42700-TV8-E93

The link: https://www.tegiwaimports.com/genuine-honda-19-alloy-wheel-black-civic-type-r-fk2-fk8.html

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This is now my winter wheel, which I think to be a solid choice for cold weather and A/S tire needs. It definitely opens up the tire choices, which is pretty limited with the stock wheel. These also save a few pounds on each corner, which is a plus! Occasionally, a savvy eye will ask about them, realizing that they're just a little different than what comes standard on the car.

Pricing has gone up significantly since I bought them, I noticed. They were quite a bit cheaper- might be better just to look at another cast wheel option at this point. If I had to replace them, I probably wouldn't for the current cost, and I would choose another cheaper aftermarket option. Regardless, I'm hoping to keep them for awhile and make use of them, while the real wheels are in hibernation.

Found a photo of the wheel on the car- looks pretty good, I think:
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BlueFalcon

BlueFalcon

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Next up:

Carbing Steel Strut Tower Bar - LHD Version
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Okay, so this is the one you want- solid steel, not aluminum, and a true one piece design without hinges on thin mounting plates. It is a special order item through Carbing. You can order the LHD version through RHDJapan, which seems to be the best option. Again, price has increased quite a bit since I bought it. That being said- it's probably the most functional and well designed bar on the market, in my opinion. If you want one, be aware that the lead time can be in excess of 45 days!

You feel this strut bar. It definitely sharpens the steering input. If you want a bar that is designed to actually be functional and aesthetically pleasing, I highly recommend it. It's beefy, but so well placed that it tucks up neatly just shy of sitting against the firewall. I could actually still remove the battery (barely-it takes a lot of effort) with the bar fully installed!
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The installation is easy, but it does require a slight trim of a plastic clip that hangs below the windshield tray here:
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I did experience a pretty big issue with the stock hood though- the variance in production put one side of the aluminum "rain channel" from the hood scoop close enough to vibrate against the bar while driving. I started to see contact on the bar after a few drives here:
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I pulled the bar off for now to avoid damage and will add it back if needed after my new hood comes in- long lead time from that manufacturer!
 
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BlueFalcon

BlueFalcon

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2019 ABM FK8
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Acuity Shifter Cable Bushing Install:

I was really anxious to get these installed, after switching out the main shifter assembly. Really wanted to complete the package, as it were.

This install is pretty well documented online at this point, complete with all the many woes from frustrated DIYers that have dealt with the dreaded C-clamps. They are awful. It's that simple. My advice is to take your time with a sharp or flattened edge, like a very thin flathead or ground-down wedge of some sort, and pry from the corner. Once started, a larger tool can be used to wiggle the clamp free. I re-used the clamps, but Honda recommends replacement, from what I can remember.

The OEM bushings need to be pried out, which is fairly straightforward- pay attention to Acuity's installation notes and/or watch their video to avoid damaging the cables. You must brace the cable and carefully pry the bushings out; which can be quite stiff and a little unnerving as you're trying not to over-stretch them. If you start "pinging" the cables, you should back off a bit.

This does require a number of items to be removed from the bay as well:
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Here's a closer look:
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All of the stuff to be removed is cake- just bag and label all your hardware, and it's no problem. Among the stuff removed: airbox, battery, battery tray, charge pipe (for extra room.)

While I was at it- changed the fluids! Why not, since I already have the rest of the stuff pulled? I've used Amsoil since I rode bikes, and it always kept my go-fast stuff in good shape. Transmission fluid change, oil and replacement filter as well:
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Hey look, gears:
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All went reasonably well. Rowed through the gears excessively, to feel out the bushings and secretly because I was super paranoid about the condition of the cables after bending them around. All good. Very firm feel and positive engagement, I feel like I could never go back to the OEM setup and feel. It's a really great change, and worth the steep cost of the assembly and bushings. Highly Recommended!
 

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