View Full Version : 84-87 Civics

05-08-2002, 09:05 PM
I have a chance to buy a 85 Civic S for extremely little money.

Is there any real difference that anyone knows of between this car and the DX?

Any buying tips?



05-09-2002, 08:26 AM
The Civic S is a 1500cc 12-valve engine. The DX has the 1300cc 12-valve engine. In the US, both have the CVCC head configuration with a down draft carburator. Here in Canada, we had the European non-CVCC head that had around 4-5 more HP. Tuners from the US would buy up the Canadian heads and install them on the US cars.

The blocks are mainly the same. Only the crank, rods and pistons make up the differences between the 1.3L & the 1.5L engines. The cam is better in the Canadian 1.5L head too. The 1500S had a slightly better suspension package, including a trick torsion type bar in the rear axle. It also had better gear ratios too.

There are many tuning secrets to these engines that I have now purged from my memory (I need more ram).

One of the weak links on these cars are the front torsion bars. They will get seezed in there. You folks from the south might not have that problem. Also the rear frame cross-member and panhard bar attachment point tend to rust away, thus sending the car to the crusher. But, overall a decent car. I raced a few of them for years.

Greg Gauper
05-09-2002, 10:07 AM
There must be a few differences in the model codes between here in the U.S. and our friends up north. The Civic S was a rare model and was eventually replaced with the DX model. I believe the differences were cosmetic i.e. the car came with a Tach, passenger mirror, slightly different trim. These had the 1500 (actually 1488cc) engine with CVCC prechamber heads and 3-barrel carb. In the US, there was a HF model which had the 1300cc motor. The blocks are completely different. The 1300 used the same carb and intake manifold. The heads had one less valve. I talked to a buddy of mine who works at a Honda repair shop. The 1500 head will fit on a 1300 motor and work just fine. When the 1300 heads became scarce, this was a typical fix. What this means is that you should check the boneyards and physically look at the head even if the car is a HF since it may have been repaired with a later DX head.

The blocks are not interchangable between the DX and the HF (same bore, different stroke, weaker crank.)

The hot rodders trick is to use HF pistons in the DX motor since they raise the compression to about 10:1 but this is not legal for IT.

05-09-2002, 11:37 AM
The 1300 and 1500 engines both have "dished" pistons but the dish in the 1300 piston is only half as deep as the 1500 piston. Hot Rodders would install the 1300 piston on the 1500 rod, thus creating a cheap, high compression setup that you just mentioned. The skirt of the 1300 piston would have to be machined and reshaped to match that of the 1500 piston otherwise it would not rotate around the 1500 crankshaft.

All this info is "hearsay" and is only what I have heard...... http://Forums.ImprovedTouring.com/it/biggrin.gif

05-09-2002, 11:42 AM

The only 12-valve CVCC engine with the prechamber, (on the 3rd gen Civic) that ever arrived in Canada, was the '84 CRX 1500, with the automatic choke. In '85 the non-CVCC CRX's arrived, all with manual chokes.

Greg Gauper
05-09-2002, 02:07 PM
Another bit of trivia....
Did you know that there is no such thing as an '84 CRX?

The official designation of this car per my '84 shop manual is that it is a Civic coupe. This is to distinguish it from the Civic sedan, Civic hatchback, and Civic wagon. Nowhere in this manual can you find any reference to 'CRX'. The only identification is the CRX decal on the back of the car.

It wasn't until '85 that the CRX name official appears in the shop manual. They broke out the coupe from the rest of the Civic line-up.

05-13-2002, 12:10 AM
I'm interested in finding the canadian head for a motor I am developing. Who are some of the distibutors or junk yards?

[This message has been edited by Tkczecheredflag (edited May 13, 2002).]