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Old 03-20-2012, 09:56 PM   #1
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Default FE3 swap versus built motor

Just looking for some opinions. Though at this point I've pretty much sold myself on the swap. Any reason why I shouldn't? From a budget standpoint I'd like to keep this cheap, is one option cheaper then the other? The end goal would be 350-400whp maybe more, maybe less.

I know for that much power I'm looking at a transmission upgrade either way, a new clutch, probably some custom intake manifold, and other things I'm forgetting.

So I have a 2001 miata, diy turbo setup, Rev built ms2, rx-8 injectors. I don't know what kind of power I'm making, it's fun, but I'd like more eventually. I also get bored easily.
So I was thinking of picking up an FE - the Kia variant, and working on things over time.
So what I believe I need for the swap is:
Motor mounts, oil pan modification, injectors. I'd like to try and use the miata 6 speed with a 626 flywheel and starter, and miata clutch and pressure plate, and a custom intake manifold, all controlled by a megasquirt. I would also see if I could adapt my current exhaust manifold, if not I'll just build a low mount setup.

I'm open to other transmission options, but I like the sound of using a miata 6 speed if possible

For a built motor I was thinking:
Forged pistons (stock if I wanted to stay cheap), forged rods, injectors,probably a custom intake manifold...I don't know I'm pretty ignorant when it comes to building engines. Obviously I'd look more into it if I chose this option.

Also not sure what I'd use for a turbo. I'd like an EFR but that's way to expensive right now. Maybe a garrett T3, or holset (I don't know much about these)

So what do you guys think? Any reason to do one over the other?
Edit: This would be for a mostly street car.
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Old 03-20-2012, 10:12 PM   #2
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Don't screw around with FE...build your current BP and call it a day.
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Old 03-20-2012, 10:37 PM   #3
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FE3 = alot of custom fab work

Built bp = taking out stock motor and dropping in the built one.
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Old 03-20-2012, 10:56 PM   #4
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Ok well is there any reason I couldn't pick up an older 1.8...one without VVT because they are expensive? What about stock pistons with forged rods? I think(not 100% though) hustler said that could be an ok budget build if I had E85. there are only like two E85 stations around me ad they are both about 30 minutes from me. But one happens to be right by my campus. Maybe I could do two maps and switch between 93 and E85?
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Old 03-20-2012, 11:03 PM   #5
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Personally, I found a great deal on a '94 engine, and am going to be dropping in a VVT head.

94-95 and VVT is epic win. YMMV and all, however.
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Old 03-20-2012, 11:09 PM   #6
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I didn't even think about a vvt head with older motor, that could be a good option.
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Old 03-20-2012, 11:12 PM   #7
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Around where I am, it's actually cheaper to run a 94-95 with a VVT head. YMMV though - Hustly talked about a...redonkulously cheap VVT engine, but here, even a crap VVT will run you more than the cost of a 94-95 engine plus a VVT head.
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Old 03-20-2012, 11:27 PM   #8
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Yeah when I looked at motors a vvt one looked like it was going to set me back almost 2 grand.
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Old 03-21-2012, 12:39 AM   #9
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The lower compression pistons in '94 lower ends and convenient water/oil ports do certainly help the case though.
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Old 03-21-2012, 01:30 AM   #10
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Quote:
there are only like two E85 stations around me ad they are both about 30 minutes from me.
You can actually buy E85 as pump gas? And by that I take it you mean 85 % ethanol? Wow, not here.
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Old 03-21-2012, 01:35 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gorillazfan1023 View Post
Yeah when I looked at motors a vvt one looked like it was going to set me back almost 2 grand.
I just bought a fully dressed 04 long block for $890 shipped... on ebay. It only had 89k miles on it and it was from an automagic Miata. There are deals out there.


Icedawg, there are more than a handful of E85 stations within 5 miles of me. I live in the suburbs too.
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Old 03-21-2012, 02:46 AM   #12
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I wouldn't bother with a FE unless you are set on making a TON of power and need to extra displacement to spool a gigantic turbo. B6/BP can easily do 300whp. It doesn't take a lot to make our cars fast.

After you get done making a custom intake manifold, exhaust manifold, oil pan, motor mounts, etc... you could have a nicely built BP that just drops in. However, figures can change if you are capable of making your own parts and have fabrication skills.

If you're interested in Holset turbos just shoot me a PM.
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Old 03-21-2012, 03:00 AM   #13
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the cheapest is to buy someone elses built engine.
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Old 03-21-2012, 03:02 AM   #14
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FE3 is awesome. More displacement, more potential, strong internals for up to 500whp on an untouched block, etc etc.

FE3 is also lots of fabrication and other custom one-off work. So if you're up for it, go for it.

Otherwise the guys are right: a BP would be easier to get to 300. buy a spare short block, build up, then drop it in with your current vvt head. easy
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Old 03-21-2012, 01:59 PM   #15
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Good info. Thanks. Lets just consider that virtually all fab work will be free/extremely cheap other then cost of materials. The biggest attraction to me is ability to not have to touch internals. Lots of information to consider now.
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Old 03-21-2012, 02:03 PM   #16
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Its a tradeoff:
fabrication vs engine assembly.

Pick your poison
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Old 03-26-2012, 12:42 AM   #17
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gti beat me tonight. Time to get parts for motor swap and 400whp.
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Old 03-26-2012, 03:30 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gorillazfan1023 View Post
gti beat me tonight. Time to get parts for motor swap and 400whp.
Don't hate on the VW's. We spend big bucks to pull like that.

(I kid I kid . Kind of... We do spend big bucks.)
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Old 03-26-2012, 09:05 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTI View Post
Don't hate on the VW's. We spend big bucks to pull like that.

(I kid I kid . Kind of... We do spend big bucks.)
Haha I know. My excuse is I started in a higher gear because I was tuning. And when I caught him I had 3 options crash into him, a jeep or brake. So I braked and he kept going
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