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Old 04-25-2010, 11:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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The newest edition, 1987 CRX HF

[YOUTUBE]4SlS1mAAu8o[/YOUTUBE]
I have no idea what's going on here, but neither do you!

1987 Honda CRX HF, 60 hp, 5 speed, MONSTER! Well, not quite. But more on that later. The need for the little CRX? With rising gas prices, I can't save the money I need fast enough to do the work I'd like to get done on the CST10. The Cab swap and OD trans will cost me about a grand or so, but I can't save that much by getting 7 mpg. :lol: So, the past few months I've been eagle-eying craigslist. Few hit and misses, a few test drives. One day, I thought I'd surf the Austin craigslist. This little CRX shows up, priced right under my budget's upper limit at $950. Why not? -click- 87 crx, got 40 mpg when I drove it. Will trade for a 92 Isuzu Rodeo axle... wait what!? Make a few calls to a few local yards, and locate one for $250 bucks! Call the guy to make sure he wants to trade out right for it, and sure enough, the whole little car for the axle! After my godfather, who lives in Austin confirmed the little guy could run, I picked up the axle the next day for $200 bucks! The yard I sourced parts for the CST10 from, cut me a nice deal for the axle.


Today, loaded up the axle, and ran out to Austin. God bless American trunks.



Trade axle, bump the idle speed on the carb so it will stay running, and off we go! Tank of gas later:




Besides the front trim pieces being mangled, it's in VERY good shape for a 23 year old car. And, as you can see from it's banana sized exhaust pipe, NON-RICED! Yes, I have discovered a rare breed of cars; the StockisCivivus.

Now, the issues. Both the carb and cam timing belt are working against me. Seemingly the belt is off by a notch, which gives it a funny power band, and the carb refuses to work in the 2ndary barrel, which means NO power, and only able to drive it on very light throttle. This made the hills in austin at freeway speeds some trouble. Eventually it couldn't take the hills at 75 mph with the lack of power, and got hot quick. Only had to stop to let it cool off twice. No idea how hot, gauge is just a line, no numbers, but I didn't let the sucker get near red. Ain't gonna want to put a head gasket in.

It became a game of gain speed down hill (I hit 80 once!), and let it carry momentum uphill. Pathetic, I know, but once all the tune up work is done, won't be an issue.

It's a totally different world than driving the CST10. The only thing they share in common is the number of doors, wheels, and the lack of AC. 1st thing, LIGHT WEIGHT. Wow this little sum***** can be tossed around, and even on balding and dryrotting front tires it holds down like mad. Easily corner at twice the speeds the CST10 can with little complaint. It wants to zip out of corners at high RPM, but the problems above put a downer when you get back into the throttle.

The turning radius is tiny. I mean, I can turn this thing around full circle in your living room. If turning radius could be measured in atoms, I would. The lack of power steering is a non issue at anything above a dead stop, it's really as easy as the CST10's power steering at speed. The brakes... work... Don't know if their weak but of the other 80s hondas I've driven, it seems on par. Clutch is smooth, though rattling? And the little shifter ain't bad for a FWD unit, certainly not the worst I've used and it's 23 years old! The only future plans are to get it running smooth, replace the header panel, and shoot it white (on the cheap). Thankfully, Houston has a lively ricer community, and I'll easily be able to get rid of it for more than I paid.

So, it's home, in Houston now.



It averaged upper 30s on the way home, and this is in ****-tier running condition, and most of it's aerodynamics ruined by the lack of a header panel. Never the less, only $12 bucks to get from North of Austin, to Houston. Double that, and add a 0 and that's what the CST10 would cost.

And, a parting shot.



Today: Found out that is is the HF version, Honda's MPG master. Plastic fenders, Aluminum brakes, and other weight reductions (like even removing the digital clock from the dash) save this already light car another 130 lbs from the base model. The motor is a 8v version of the DX and Si. The 8-valver has a flatter torque curve down low, for low RPM driving. A shift light is added, and the trans is regeared along with a taller 5th, though the final ratio is shorter. The HF was also equipped with a quicker steering ratio. The final touches are miner tweaks to the aerodynamics. Many of these enhancements really make it a much more fun car as a byproduct too. Less weight, and quicker steering make it a bit more tossable, while the torque curve lets it power out with less shifting.

The results? EPA rated 45 city, 51 freeway. 10mpg in each over the base model.

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"All I know about music is that not many people ever really hear it. [...] But the man who creates the music is hearing something else, is dealing with the roar rising from the void and imposing order on it as it hits the air. What is evoked in him, then, is of another order, more terrible because it has no words, and triumphant, too, for the same reason. And his triumph, when he triumphs, is ours." -Sonny's Blues

Last edited by texanidiot25; 04-28-2010 at 11:45 AM..
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Old 04-28-2010, 03:58 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Nice CRX! Nice truck too!

The HF is a 1.5L. There was only a 1.3L CRX in 1984. All 84-87 CRXs had the plastic fenders and header panel.

I used to have an '84 Civic Wagon until it rusted away. Basically a 5-door CRX DX.
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Old 04-28-2010, 11:42 AM   #3 (permalink)
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You can thank Wiki for that bit, but many of the other CRX sources fail to mention that too, but fixed

This little guy is rust free, even under the floor pans. It is originally a California car, and has wound it's way to Texas. Was in colorado for a bit, apparently, but no rust to show for it.
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"All I know about music is that not many people ever really hear it. [...] But the man who creates the music is hearing something else, is dealing with the roar rising from the void and imposing order on it as it hits the air. What is evoked in him, then, is of another order, more terrible because it has no words, and triumphant, too, for the same reason. And his triumph, when he triumphs, is ours." -Sonny's Blues
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Old 04-28-2010, 12:35 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Nice find! Can't beat that price and it puts my 2003 Prius EPA to shame.

Great truck too. Isn't 7 a lucky number?. You will have to get 77 in your CRX just to be fair.
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Old 04-28-2010, 12:42 PM   #5 (permalink)
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And it's much more fun to drive than a Prius :P What I like about this car the most is it's more efficient than most other cars on here and in the real world (average drivers and average cars), with out loosing any fun-factor. It's still Honda's street legal go-cart first and foremost.

Picking up the carb kit today, and the last of my tune-up parts will be in by tomorrow. Will hopefully get on it this weekend, and see how it really drives.
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"All I know about music is that not many people ever really hear it. [...] But the man who creates the music is hearing something else, is dealing with the roar rising from the void and imposing order on it as it hits the air. What is evoked in him, then, is of another order, more terrible because it has no words, and triumphant, too, for the same reason. And his triumph, when he triumphs, is ours." -Sonny's Blues
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Old 04-28-2010, 04:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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The HF also has lighter weight steel wheels, light weight aluminum air intake, no sway bars, exhaust pipe is one piece from the oil pan to the muffler tip and a few other oddities.
I have one as well, a 1985 crx hf that is not on the road at this time, but I've done a fair amount of work to it, rebuilt the carb, I think I have a PDF of the dealer shop manual as well.
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Old 04-28-2010, 06:23 PM   #7 (permalink)
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It has a sway bar, just no rear sway bar, though apparently the rear dead-axle is designed to act as one. The exhaust is brilliantly simple, with minimal bends and no 90* bends (after the cat) like the DX and Si have.

Honda certainly listened to the "Adding Lightness" theory
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"All I know about music is that not many people ever really hear it. [...] But the man who creates the music is hearing something else, is dealing with the roar rising from the void and imposing order on it as it hits the air. What is evoked in him, then, is of another order, more terrible because it has no words, and triumphant, too, for the same reason. And his triumph, when he triumphs, is ours." -Sonny's Blues
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Old 05-02-2010, 03:12 AM   #8 (permalink)
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It's functioning! Cap, rotor, plugs, and adjusting the valves and now the little guy runs great. No more missfiring, and can be driven at wide open throttle. The only vacuum leak (on a motor with over 50 vacuum lines!) is the carburetor base gasket, so just have to track that down and it's all good. But the car runs excellent otherwise, I can't wait to get it legal and on the road.

Also replaced the header panel as well, and spray painted it blue for the time being. Again, the car will eventually be white.






Still ugly, but will worry about tidying it up later.


Only 2 or 3 of the valves were really out, the others were in spec pretty well. Much quieter now though! You can barely hear it running. Timing belt was in good shape, so no need to bother with putting on the new one.


Look at duh wittle carburetor, it's soooo cute! Fingers are there for size comparison. Glad I don't have to dive into this one, they seem to be more complex than even the Q-Jet, and VACUUM LINE HELL!
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Lets see how far it can go

"All I know about music is that not many people ever really hear it. [...] But the man who creates the music is hearing something else, is dealing with the roar rising from the void and imposing order on it as it hits the air. What is evoked in him, then, is of another order, more terrible because it has no words, and triumphant, too, for the same reason. And his triumph, when he triumphs, is ours." -Sonny's Blues
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Old 05-02-2010, 08:59 AM   #9 (permalink)
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You did really well on a swap for a honda deal, glad to hear it's running good. If you are planning on driving it alot you may want to change that timing belt, you don't want to bend up your valves.
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Old 05-02-2010, 10:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I'm glad to hear that all your vacuum lines are good, I think there are 56 of them and each one does something, a good dozen or so of them control the fuel cut off that happens when you engine brake, others help make sure that the engine doesn't lean out to much and burn valves, yet others control the warm air intake, all of them make the engine run better, some in cold weather, some in warm weather.

You should also change your tranny fluid, 0w30 or 5W30 motor oil every other year.
Years ago on Redpepperracing.com there was a guy who was making carbon fiber head panels, fenders and hoods, they were above my price range but they looked good and replaced the plastic fenders that often crack after 25 years.

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