Project EJ Civic, Building the Drivetrain
By Mike Kojima
Annie’s Civic had seen tons of street and track miles, over 200,000 miles since she had completed her B series swap years ago. Her clutch had begun to slip probably 3 years ago and she had been nursing it along for this long as she was too busy with other car projects to take care of it. With this many miles we felt that it was probably prudent to open up the transmission just to inspect the insides and take care of any issues before bolting it up to her renewed engine pushing much more power.
|We sent out our gears to WPC Treatment for friction reduction. The lustrous WPC treated surface is very hard and slippery.|
The transmission was left in the capable hands of Technosquare’s Howard Watanabe who disassembled it and found it to be in quite good condition with the exception of 1-2 and 2-3 syncros which had some wear. Although the syncros were still serviceable, we replaced them anyway. While we had the transmission apart, we sent the gears, syncros, hubs, sliders, shift forks, shift shafts and final drive gear for WPC Treatment.
|Friction reduction and smooth shifting is the reason why we sent our shift shafts hub sliders and forks to WPC.|
WPC treatment is a not a coating but a surface treatment that is similar to shotpeening but on a micro level. You can read all about the science of WPC here. In the case of Annie’s transmission we WPC’ed everything not so much for strength improvements as the B18 transmission is pretty strong for her planned amount of power, but for friction reduction and shifting smoothness. The WPC process imparts a silky smoothness on the parts and greatly reduces friction and operating temperature. We figure the latter is important when the car is track driven and the friction reduction may show up as a few more horsepower and better fuel economy.
|Our ring and pinion also will benefit from WPC’s low friction surface treatment.|
The most important thing we are doing to the transmission is installing an M Factory limited slip differential. The M Factory diff we used is a clutch type LSD. M Factory also has helical gear type LSDs. We chose the clutch type LSD because we wanted the more positive action of a clutch type LSD for our split track use. The drawback to having a clutch type LSD on the street is it can be rougher in operation and chatter. We did a few things to reduce this which we will discuss in a second.
|We also WPC treated our syncros and balk rings to help smooth and speed shifting. Several of the syncros in our 200,000 plus mile tranny needed replacing but it was in surprisingly good condition.|