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Owner: California98Civic
Black and Green: 1998 Honda Civic DX Coupe
Displacement: 1.59 L
Fuel type: gasoline
Transmission: manual
Curb weight: 2262 lbs
Coefficient of drag: 0.32
Frontal area: 21.4 sq.ft.
Instrumentation: UltraGauge
Description: I have three goals with this car. First, average 60+ mpg while averaging the posted speed limits. Second, make the car cheap to own. Third, save on costs associated with newer cars, such as depreciation, car loan interest, and theft and damage coverage in my auto insurance.

OEM data sheets: automobile-catalog.com.
Transmission swap: 1993 Civic CX (see below for details of the mod) with 93K miles on it (March 2013).
Odometer calibration: I get a 2.9% odometer undercount (consistently) with 13" VX wheels all around and Michelin Defenders (175/70) on the front and Michelin Harmonys (175/70) on the rear. The Michelin Harmonys turn 923 revs per mile and the Defenders 917/mile (tirerack.com).
Speedometer calibration: I also see a very slight speed over count. The 1996-1998 Honda Service Manual says the speedometer reads 60mph when the Vehicle Speed Sensor (VSS) turns 1,025rpms and the 1992-1995 manual says 60 mph at 1026 rpms of the VSS. The speedometer gears in the 1998 and 1993 transmissions both measure 90.6mm using vernier calipers. So the differences in speed and distance calculations are due to wheel/tire size combinations and the imprecision of the VSS/Speedo from the factory.(cite)
Drag figures as modified: Cd ~0.28 (an 0.04 reduction estimated using this Hot Rod Magazine article). Frontal area estimate 21.0 because of narrower, smaller tires and mirror delete (OEM was 21.4). And CdA estimate 5.88 (OEM 6.85).
Engine type: D16Y7 (106hp/103tq)
OEM tire: Firestone FR680, 185/65SR14 (23.5" diam. & 886 revs/mi.)
ECU: OBD2, Code P2E-L32
OEM Color: Flamenco Black Pearl (Code NH-592P).
Manufacture date & place: Tuesday, 1/13/1998 at the East Liberty, Ohio factory.
Current odometer reading: 220,000 (passed 200,000 mi on 10/28/2012).

COSTS AND SAVINGS

Subtracting the costs of modding against my total savings in gas from modding and hypermiling, I'm currently over $2000 ahead since Feb 2011. But keeping the car is also an "ecomod" in itself. Keeping it saves plastics, metals, and money. I avoid car payments, costlier insurance, and newer vehicle depreciation. Ecomodding is also how and why I began learning DIY auto repair. I do all the repairs on this car, saving on professional mechanics' labor charges. And I save a couple hundred dollars a month in insurance and depreciation.
Current Mods: HYPERMILING (adjusting the driver nut is the single most effective "mod"):

I usually use EOC and P&G on surface roads, and a mix of these and "GLEN" on the freeways. I also use MPG-optimized routes, trip combinations, and driving times as much as my commuter schedule allows.

AERODYNAMIC (listed according to what I think most on EM would agree is the most to least effective):

2.5" lawnedging airdam
Side skirts v2.0 (cut rain gutter, flat black paint)
Full upper grill block (v2.0) & 80% lower block (v1.2).
175mm wide tires all around (stock was 185).
Passenger mirror replaced with internal convex.
Half-moon style wheel skirts version 2.0 (see version 1).
Mudflap delete.
Passenger-side wiper delete (and RainX application).
OEM antenna moved behind windshield, which is painted black at the top with plasti-dip
Thrush Turbo muffler (smaller than OEM, better for planned belly pan's rear diffuser).

MECHANICAL/ELECTRICAL (listed according to what I think most on EM would agree is the most to least effective):

1993 Civic CX transmission with 93,000 miles on it (installed when odo read 203,000 miles). In fifth gear it provides a 20% rpm reduction over my stock DX coupe gearing, and about a 25% reduction in rpms in 4th gear. Compare ratios here. And here is how I dealt with one PITA part of the swap.

An injector kill switch
Tires inflated to 60psi.

An "Externally Powered Electrical System" (I plug the car in when I'm home). The set-up combines an alternator on/off switch, 7 LED brake & running lights and a H4/HB2/9003 HID kit for the headlights, a deep-cycle Odyssey PC1200 battery with metal jacket & XSP-586 SAE post adapters (installed @192K miles), and a 25-amp on-board battery charger. I've also pulled one of two 5w license plate bulbs. For notes on why the 25 amp charger is important see this post.

A Warm Air Intake (WAI). And CAI/WAI manual switching ability for hottest conditions.

Alignment set to "zero toe"

Advanced ignition timing to 14 degrees BTDC (currently at stock 12*).
13" wheels and 175/70s (replaced 14" 185/65s).
New Micheline Defenders (LRR) on front wheels.
Used Michelin Harmony Tires on rear wheels (once considered LRR).
NGK single-platinum spark plugs.
Radiator/grill ducting (v.1.2).
6K oil change schedule.
Fully synthetic Mobil 1 "Fuel Economy" 0W-30 (5w-30 currently).
Tried Royal Purple 5w30 oil in the manual transmission, and it worked fine in the 98 DX but I switched to 10w40 in the 93 CX transmission.

WEIGHT REDUCTION (probably most effective in city/P&G driving):

251lbs removed (to approx 2011lbs* curb weight):
9.7lbs VX wheels (replaced 18lbs alloys), 9lb thrush muffler (replacing 18lb OEM), AC, rear seats, power steering, and numerous other things small and large.


* = Includes 33lbs for front passenger seat delete (often reinstalled).

ECOLOGICAL FOOTPRINT: Some hypermiling techniques might raise certain emissions when engine is running. But radically cutting overall fuel consumption reduces the average emissions per mile. Cutting fuel consumption in half also halves my contribution to demand for fuel, which produces pollution in production and very high emissions in distribution via super tankers (3, 4, 5).

Planned Mods: THE BELOW IS JUST NOTES FOR POSSIBLE MODS, NOT ACTUAL PLANS.

EM project library link.

Sites for parts, besides my local Autozone and O'Reilly: a, b, c, d, e, f, g, and h.

Tires & wheels (besides ebay & Craig's List): a and b.

Calculators: standard deviation, Ohms Law, & drag HP losses

WEIGHT:

Fiberglass or carbon fiber panels (if replacements ever needed)
Lighter rear brake drums from 1st Gen Insight (if replacement needed one day): Insight drums weigh about 4.6 lbs ea and the Civic OEM drums are a little over 6lbs *

MECHANICAL/ELECTRICAL:

Would consider a Boomslang harness (BF08003 for the 1996-1998 Civic) and an APEXI SAFC2 in order to produce my own version of "lean burn," but it would require converting to a wide-band O2 sensor and an EGT sensor. That would not be easily reversible for California emissions tests.

Lighter flywheel (perhaps from a VX or HX) when the clutch finally fails. The stock DX flywheel is about 20lbs and the stock VX is about just under 16lbs. A Ralco RZ Aluminum Flywheel is only 7lbs. (interesting PDF article on possible benefit)

Lightweight stock sized, standard belt layout crank pulley (Unorthodox Racing Part #0220610612) or a single belt conversion, possibly experimenting with Unorthodox Racing Ultra R underdrive crank pulley (part #030610502). An undampened aftermarket crank pulley seems unlikely to harm an inline 4 engine.

Possible wheel swaps for gearing/weight advantages:
13" Civic VX 8 spoke (higher RPMs but only 9.7 lbs.)
14" Civic HX 8 spoke (approx 11 lbs)
14" Civic Hybrid 2003-2005 (approx 14 lbs)
15" Mini Cooper R81 Imola 7-hole (12.1 lbs)
15" Mini Cooper R86 star-spoke (15 lbs)
15" Mini Cooper R96 7-spoke (13.8 lbs)
15" Enkei Classic J-speed (14.1 lbs)
15" Enkei RP-F1 (9.5 lb)*
15" Kosei K4R (10.7 lb)*
15" Konig Helium (11.2 lb) 40mm offset, hub bore 73.1mm*
15" Acura Integra GSR (94-95, 16lbs)
Other size specs to double-check for any possible swap: Offset 35-45; bolt pattern 4X100; lug size 12mmX1.5; hub center bore 56.1mm minimum (larger needs spacer rings). For more info see 1, 2, and 3 (for general wheel size data across models).

Brake drag reduction mod: drums and discs.

Future LRR tires: Nokian eLine should be available USA 2014

AERODYNAMIC

Rear wheel skirts (brackets)
Lower forward stagnation point with expanding foam
Rear box cavity or flat rear trunk lid spoiler
Diffuser and bellypan

GENERAL REPAIRS in PLANNING STAGES (in order of priority):

Timing belt (& add lightweight crank pulley w/ balancer)

Investigate themostat/hoses for cooling system periodic leak cause (done June 2014).

Chase-down oil leak (probably oil pan gasket)

Bleed brakes and inspect pistons (possible brake dragging).

Replace driver's outside door handle (already acquired junkyard replacement, sanded, and painted it). Video.

Fix rapid/slow directional signal problem (ground? relay?).

Cabin fan noise (is a leaf stuck? replace filter?)

Clean the CAT with citric acid before 2014 smog test. Also see this thread.

Rebuild DX trans using VX final drive gear and a rebuild kit from Synchrotech or another company.


Official Fuel Economy Ratings
EPA city 27 mpg(US)
EPA highway 34 mpg(US)
EPA combined 30 mpg(US)

Actual Fuel Economy Performance
Lifetime 61.7 mpg(US)
Last 3 tanks 67.15 mpg(US)
90 days 65.47 mpg(US)
View Fuel Log
Last updated: Jul 26, 2014

Trip Log
AV 64.7378 mpg (US)

(Created: 2011-03-06 10:29:32 / Modified: 2014-07-26 23:11:41)



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