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Frankenstein Hybrid Honda Power

VTEC Head Meets LS Block

In the world of boxing, the bout between Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield brought two well-trained fighters with opposing styles into the ring.

Tyson, known as "The Knockout Artist" had the power to drop his opponent in less than two rounds, maybe two seconds, but often does not have the stamina to last 12 rounds.

In the world of Honda performance, this situation is paralleled with the DOHC non-VTEC Integra motor, assuming the role of Tyson and the DOHC VTEC engine portraying Holyfield. The non-VTEC 1.8-liter has brute Tyson-like torque, but lacks the ability to venture forth into the higher reaches of the power band, due to it's unstable valvetrain. The 1.8- and 1.6-liter DOHC VTEC motors have the stamina of Holyfield, climbing long and deep to stratospheric engine speeds, but lacking the torque necessary to fire down the 1320 effectively. If we could apply our hybrid "Tyson-Holyfield" theory to our motor, we would have the best of both worlds--brute torque force and extended high-rev stamina. It exists and it's called the Frankenstein engine.

Frankenstein Facts
The Integra B18A1 and B18B1 engines displace 1834cc and have an 81mm x 89mm bore and stroke configuration. In the case of the two B-series DOHC VTEC engines, the Integra B18C1 (GSR) moves 1797cc with an 81mm x 87.2mm bore and stroke combo and the Del Sol B16A1 combusts 1595cc with an 81mm x 77.4mm bore and stroke. Basically, this shows that the B18A1 in stock trim has 35cc more displacement than the B18C1 and 239cc more than the B16A1! This is the primary reason why the non-VTEC motor exhibits more of the bottom and mid-range torque than each of the VTEC models. Since none of the Honda engines have the sheer volume of V8 iron, the need to extract as many ccs as possible is necessary to create the low-end power needed to propel a vehicle down the quarter-mile effectively.

The Transformation
We happened to stop by Pann Auto Performance in San Diego and visited Carl Batac, the company's resident auto surgeon who was about to perform this miracle surgery by putting a B16A1 head on a B18A1 block. Although our pictures show the transplant taking place off the car, this procedure can be done without removing the motor in cars that are motivated by the B18A powerplant since most of the modifications will be done to the head rather than the block. Naturally, this comes in handy if you ever have the urge to return to "blandness" and reinstall a non-VTEC head.

Since this particular transplant is going the all-motor route, Carl decided to replace the 9.2:1 pistons with the 10.0:1 compression GS-R factory slugs. One point that should be taken into consideration is that the VTEC piston will fit in the non-VTEC block and this will create more torque to get you down the 1320. The 10.0:1 GS-R piston is a great street replacement piston however for a race application we would suggest either trying the B16A 10.5:1, B16B 10.6:1 or B18C5 10.8:1 piston to increase the torque for a race motor.

The tools required for the modification are: 1/8-inch tap and driver, 9/16-inch drill bit, 10mm hex wrench, 24mm socket with ratchet and wrenches for AN fittings. The parts you will need to scrounge up include: 1/8-inch NPT T (two female sides and one male side), 1/8-inch brass plug, 1/8-inch male NPT to 4AN male, 3/8 NPT male to 4AN male, no less than 18 inches of four steel-braided hoses with 4AN female sides and the necessary electrical wire for activating VTEC (this depends on the year of the vehicle and your application.)

Horsepower, torque and rpm are the keys to molding our Frankenstein motor. We extracted our torque from the LS, pulled out the rpm from the VTEC and horsepower came from the combination of the two. People say, "You can talk the talk, but can you walk the walk." so with the Dynojet as our referee the proof is now on paper. Frankenstein lives.

Year VTEC VTEC Pressure
1988-91 A-8 B-5
1992-95 A-4 D-6
1996-00 A-8 C-15
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