… in with the new.

After all the troubles we had yesterday with trying to fit the engine into the Impreza, we got it in today with minimal effort. It was amazing.

Just to make sure I hadn’t screwed anything up, we pulled the engine back out and took the clutch/pressure plate from the engine. I tested the pilot bearing on the transmission input shaft and was actually a little dismayed at how much slop there was between the pilot bearing and the input shaft. It went right on, though, so I am not too worried about it. I put it all back together, torquing it properly, and greasing the pilot bearing inner race to ensure the tranny input shaft would have its best shot at going in without issue. I also put more grease on the input shaft to ensure it would slide into where it needed to go. Here are a couple of gratuitous shots of the flywheel and clutch assembly on the engine.



And yes, I cleaned the flywheel before putting the clutch on. For anyone who cares, the flywheel bolts get torqued to 58-62 lb-ft (I torqued these to 60 lb-ft), while the clutch bolts get torqued to only 11.6 lb-ft. I broke out my 3/8″ drive torque wrench and torqued them to 139 in-lbs.

Once everything was back together, we brought it up and over the core support, down into the engine bay again, put the bottom two studs into the bottom of the transmission where they go, wiggled a little bit, adjusted the jack under the transmission once, played a little bit more with the cherry picker, and the thing went together slicker than anybody’s business. I could not believe it. After fighting with the stupid thing for over four hours yesterday, just how easy it went together today.

Here are a few pics of the engine in the bay … after all that work, I just have to sit back and admire it a little bit.




It was a lot of work, but the ends make it worth it. You can see how tightly the front end of the engine is to the core support. Just a few inches of space. With the accessory drives in place, there’ll be about an inch of space between them and the radiator. I’ll need to cut the core support up top and work some angle iron into its place.

Still a lot of work left to do. Now the hard part begins with the wiring harness and getting everything to fit up correctly. Not that this swap hasn’t been done before, but when you’re doing a swap like this for the first time, nothing about it seems easy.

Out with the old …

My son came up from North Carolina on Thursday. They came in late, so we all slept in on Friday and got a late start to getting going on the Impreza. I get Friday off every 2nd week on payday, so I take my wife out for a day date. We’ll either go to breakfast or lunch. This Friday we had Indian food at a local place here in the ‘Burg. When we got back, I’d discovered my son had already jump started the process by draining the radiator and having the hood off the car. He had also removed the front bumper and the rest of the front end components which could possibly get in the way. Here are some pics of the front end. I’d actually taken these pictures so I’d have reference after the fact.




Nothing too uncommon here … just a 96 Impreza with a EJ22 engine in it.

In what seemed like just a little while, we were able to get everything apart and pull the engine. I was amazed at how little time this really took us to get things done. Here’s the little EJ22 on the cherry picker. Not a very large engine at all.


When my son first got this car, there was a massive oil leak from on the right side (passenger side) cam seal. It was leaking down onto the exhaust and basically made a mess of everything. At that time we had changed out the timing belt, water pump, idlers, and cam seals. This shut down the oil leak, but the oil stayed put where it was … which was all over the bottom side of the engine bay. This is very evident from this picture.


There was a ton of grease everywhere. This is what nearly 300k miles worth of grime looks like. With a large cleanup task head of us, I pulled out the power washer and had at it. Here’s what the engine bay looked like after the cleanup.


Mucho better! Since I had the power washer out and running, I also took a stab at the EG33.


We had done our best to tape everything up and cover it where possible. This didn’t keep all the water out, but it did keep the vast majority of it out. It clean up nice, but as you’ll see in my next blog post, I’ll still have to do more cleanup.

There is still lots of work ahead of us, but the work is pushing forward.

There and Back Again: An Impreza’s Story


Last weekend I made a trip to North Carolina to pick up my son’s Impreza. The trip was fairly innocuous.


This is my selfie view headed down to NC … to bad I’m not more adept at driving and taking selfies. It’s funny you cannot see the trailer out the back of the truck … the only way to see it was through the side view mirrors.


Here is the truck all loaded up in the morning and ready to travel back to the ‘Burg. We had to muscle it up onto the trailer. My son and I just couldn’t quite get the rear tires up onto the trailer, so enlisted the help of my Daughter-in-Law and Daughter to help. With them it went on fairly easy.

I had two issues during the trip. The first was on the way down there. It was dark out at around 9:30pm. Traveling down I-95, towing a trailer, without many other vehicles around. Up ahead in the distance I could see another pickup truck. It was driving very erratically. I had to jam on the brakes, which of course, cause the empty trailer behind me to start bucking.

U-Haul car trailers have a very nifty built in braking system. Built into the tongue of the trailer is a master cylinder which pipes fluid down to the brakes at the wheels. When you step on the brakes in the towing vehicle, the trailer slides forward on the tongue and engages the brakes. The amount of braking force is proportional in the trailer to what is being applied in the tow vehicle. Very ingenious … if there’s weight on the trailer. If the trailer is empty, it tends to react late and over react when it does engage. When you step on your brakes too hard, the trailer will tend to buck and this time was no different.

The second issue which appeared was my check engine light came on a few miles after getting the car and driving back towards home on Sunday morning. My usual “rule of thumb” here is if there doesn’t seem to be any change in the way the vehicle is running, the problem probably isn’t an emergency. Since the truck kept running the same, I figured this was probably one of those times. The strange thing about it is, after I dropped the car off at the house and returned the trailer, the light went out on its own. When I got back home and was able to put a scanner on it, the problem was the B2S2 O2 sensor. It showed it as Circuit Low Voltage (P0157).

Check Engine Light

What this problem really did for me was tell me I need to ensure I have my hand held scanner with me when I go on trips of this type. It’s better to know what’s going on than to worry about it for nearly 300 miles.


Resistor Pack for Fan Control

So everyone doesn’t believe I’m just the kind of guy who works on Subarus (believe me, I’m a Chevy guy!), I had to do a small amount of work on my Silverado today.

My 06 Silvy has an auto-temp climate control console (RPO: CJ2) in it. This is a pretty nice feature to have, but there is one downside which many people with this feature have found. When the resistor pack goes bad, the fan cuts to high and will continue to run even when the engine is shut off and the key is out of the ignition! What a PITB! It takes you forever to find the underhood fuse to shut the blower fan off. It wasn’t too bad … this time. That’s right. I’ve rode this bull before about a year and a half ago.

At least this time I didn’t have to solder wires together like I did the last time. Mind you, the first resistor pack lasted about eight years. The second only the year and a half. It really isn’t hard to change out the resistor pack, though. You just pull three small screws out of the blower fan shroud which covers and quiets the fan, then pull two small screws out of the resistor pack to remove it. If you haven’t done this before, you have to clip the harness to pull the old resistor pack out, then you have to attach a new wire which comes with the new resistor pack to provide the power throughput for the fan. Pretty simple really, made easier if its been replaced once already.

Here’s what the resistor pack and wiring looks like fresh out of the box:


Repin For The Win

Tonight I was able to get the wiring harness in some semblance of order, as you can see here:


I repinned all of the wires which I will be using back into the connectors, which get plugged into the ECU. There are still a few other wires attached which I don’t believe I’ll be needing.

You can see those wadded up into the zip lock bag at the bottom of the picture and the wad of wires zip tied near the center. There’s a second ziplock bag which is towards the left side of the image. That, believe it or not, is the spaghetti mess called a ground. I’ll be hooking at least some of those up to different points inside the cab of the vehicle. You cannot have enough grounding points.

This begs the question, “Why are all those wires wadded up in ziplock bags and a zip tie?” The simple answer to that is, I didn’t want to cut any wires from the wiring harness. These are still attached to the plugs (upper left in the image) on the engine side, but have no home on the other end. When we have the engine up and running and I know for a certainty I won’t be needing these wires, they will go the way of the dodo bird. I’ll just hack them off and tape the ends off. Until then, they stay put.

The next big plan is to get the Impreza up to the ‘Burg from Fayetteville. That’ll be me. I was going to do it this weekend, but decided not to due to other commitments and such. I am hoping to go down in about a week and get it. I’ll still have to rent a trailer from U-Haul, but so be it. Sometimes you just gotta get stuff done. With it being so late in the month, I don’t see us meeting our self imposed deadline of 30 September. I guess the world will just come to an end, eh?

Over the Scales

I had the chance to once again roll a car over the scales at Summit Metal Recycling here in the ‘Burg. It’s really sort of cool to watch them go at it.

I was able to borrow a trailer from a friend of mine. He dropped it by last Sunday afternoon and I was able to get the SVX loaded up. It took me a while to get it onto the trailer, because I was doing it myself and I was using a manual come-along to get it there. One small minute of “excitement” getting it up on the trailer was when I’d realized by taking the mounting bolts out of the front bumper, trying to pull by the bumper area was not a good thing … the bumper wanted to pull all the way out! I should have taken a picture of it, but I was too into the moment and didn’t get one for my blog. Great fun! I was able to get a couple of bolts back into it and it was stabilized at that point.

When I got home from work on Monday, I changed rather quickly and got ready to roll over to Summit. Here is what the car looked like on the trailer, ready to go:


You can see I had taken the wheels off of the SVX at this point. We are going to try and use these on my son’s Impreza when we get it up here. The tires are probably 5-10% of being new, so it seemed a tragedy to roll those across the scales, too. IIRC, my sons tires are something like P225’s, while these are P255’s. He should have a little more grip out of them than what he’s seen on his worn out tires.  If the backspacing doesn’t work for him, then no harm, no foul. We tried.

I was able to get down to Summit without issue. Rolled it across the scales to get the initial weight of everything, then rolled it back into their yard. I parked where they told me to and unstrapped the SVX. I had borrowed a couple of large ratchet straps from my buddy who lent me the trailer. These worked perfectly along with the tie down points on the trailer itself. Once the SVX was unstrapped, there was a guy with a for lift who ran the forks right through the window, blowing it out and spread death and destruction everywhere … it was awesome!! He picked up the car like it was nothing, moving it away from the trailer. He hopped down out of the cab of the fork lift, went over to an area, grabbed a broom and handed it to me. I went dutifully to work sweeping all of the safety glass off of the trailer … it took some work to get it off of there, but I didn’t want to be spreading the death and destruction all over the road, so swept it off into the recycling yard.

Once the trailer was cleaned, I rolled the empty trailer back over the scales again so the proprietor could get a second weight which gave them the difference using some simple math. I don’t know what the weight came to, but can tell you how much they gave me for the lumber SVX hulk: $58.50. Now you know what an 92 SVX is worth sans motor. I didn’t recoup much from the purchase of the car, but that’s more than okay. I can say an SVX engine, wiring harness, and computer costs a little less than $700. Perfectly fine with me.

Strippers Anonymous

I have finally finished stripping out the harness. It isn’t completely together, but it is apart. I have gone through the list of wires which are needed, as provided by taiden (see previous blog entry). I’ll tell you, though, looking for a wire which never existed because you wrote the wrong one down can lead to some agonizing moments. After about 15-20 minutes of searching for C11, I looked at the list again to see I had written it down wrong. The one I should have been looking for was C10, which not only exists, but had been in my hand the whole time! Great fun.

Here is what the rest of the harness looks like … this is the part which I don’t need:


Here is what is actually needed for the swap:


As you can tell it still needs to be sorted and made pretty. I’ve started working on it, but it’s still a chore. I’ll be repinning everything which is needed back into the connectors sometime today. There are still some wires in the second picture which I won’t be needing (at least I don’t think I’ll be needing). I kept them with this portion of the harness as to keep with my “don’t cut the stupid thing” rule. I only had to make one cut in the whole wiring harness. There was one wire which was used as the power for an O2 sensor which was intertwined with some of the other wiring … there was a crimper in place holding it together, so that’s where I cut it.


I will solder and heat shrink it later once I get everything sorted correctly. I put a couple of pieces of tape, one on either side of the cut and marked them accordingly so I could identify where/how/when it should go together. I don’t think it would have been an issue. I think it was just me being me (read: anal).


My desk area is a complete mess! I’ve got wires and stuff all over the place: wiring diagrams. wires, connectors, tools, etc., etc., etc. Lots of work left to do on the harness, but it’s coming along. Needless to say, even though I’m saying I won’t need anything out of the top picture, that part of the harness isn’t going anywhere until I get the car started and running right. No sense getting rid of something I might need.

A friend of mine will be bringing a car trailer by later today. When it gets here I’ll be loading up the SVX carcass for it to go over the scales at Summit Metal Recycling here in the ‘Burg. That will happen on Monday after I get home from work.  Just for grins & giggles, I’ll post up how much I actually get from the recycler … I’m going to guess about $80.

SVX Wiring Harness Depinning

Before I can do anything with marrying the SVX wiring harness to the Impreza harness, I have to strip out the parts of the SVX harness which I need. Literally it will end up being about 20% of the wires, as I said before. The project for today was to get the harness depinned from the connectors for the Powertrain Control Unit (PCU).

To depin the harness, you have to figure out which connectors you actually have to depin. It isn’t too difficult to figure out if you strip the harness out yourself because the four connectors are inserted into the PCU. The strange thing about them, though, is they are colored bright yellow. In most cars with a Supplemental Restraint System (SRS), you’d expect anything bright yellow to be associated with the air bags. In this case, you’d be wrong.

Here are some pics of the aftermath. These first four images are the tags after I’ve tagged all of the wires going into the connectors.





I really had to be careful with the following wire … I was afraid it might explode :o)


In the following image, you can see the firewall plug/grommet. I was hoping to be able to pull all of the wires free I’d need from the rest of the wiring harness without making a mess of everything, but it appears I’ll need to pull this apart as well. In the center of the plug there is a bit of sealant which is binding all of the wires together. I won’t be able to work around this, so it’s all going to have to come apart.


Here are the connectors I was telling you about, right after I depinned all of them. They are looking mighty baren.


The following is the pinout guide I’ll be using to select the wires and connections I’ll be needing for the swap. I’m using the image curtesy of taiden on YouTube.


SVX EG33 Wiring Harness Removal

My son and I are in the process of installing an EG33 engine into his 96 Impreza. If you are at all familiar with the Impreza, you know it came with a EJ22 engine, which is an H4 design. The EG33 is an H6 design. In its basic form, the EG33 is just like the EJ22, but with two more cylinders (and a bunch more horsepower/torque).

We have ripped the EG33 out of a 92 SVX. Along with the engine, we’ve pulled the wiring harness, radiator, and many other parts we may/may not need. We figured we’d give it a try before we go and buy something else.


Here is the EG33 engine snuggled nicely into the engine bay of the 92 SVX. It really isn’t much bigger than the EJ22. I think it’s about 6″ longer or something. Due to this, we’ll need to move the radiator forward on the Impreza. We’re going to check the radiator from the SVX and see if we might be able to shoehorn it into the car, but don’t know yet.


EG33Here’s the EG33 out on the garage floor. I’m not sure we had to take the top portion of the intake off, but it came off to make it easier to get to the flexplate bolts through the inspection cover which is located just under the throttle bodies.





This is the jumbled mess of the wiring harness out of the SVX. It took us pretty much most of the day to get it out of the car, mainly due to all of the work which was required to get to it.





The entire dash needed to come out. Here’s what the aftermath looked like and believe me when I say, we added all kinds of room by removing the dash. Not much left.

Cordless_ImpactOne of the best tools I’ve invested in lately is this cordless 1/4″ impact driver. Absolutely made pulling everything out of the SVX take about 1/10th the time of using hand tools. This one only goes to 125 lb-ft maximum torque, but who cares … it was more than enough to pull the car apart. I highly recommend getting one. We used it everywhere. The 1/4″ to 3/8″ adapter I bought has worked flawlessly. Don’t pay attention to the naysayers who may suggest these things won’t stand up or don’t provide enough torque to do anything. We used this thing all day long without changing batteries. Great little impact gun, no doubt about it.

Paulster2 Project Blogs

This is a blog of different projects. They cover the gambit of current, past, and future projects. I’ll try to update as much as possible, but don’t expect miracles. If you have questions, please comment, but keep it clean. All comments will need to be approved prior to actually making it to the page, so keep that in mind. I hope you enjoy this new endeavor.

Paul J.