1984 Honda Civic wagon, original owner

Not open for further replies.
Sep 14, 2010
S California
Here's my first UOA after a rebuild. It failed California smog because of visible smoke, the oil control rings wore out. On tear down everything else look good but I put in new parts because I purchased a rebuild kit that included pistons, bearings, seals and gaskets. I also had a valve job done and no valves needed to be replaced. This car is a 30 year daily driver and has never let me down except once for a dead batter a few weeks ago. Most people look at the carb and all those vacuum lines and warn me about problems. There has never been a problem or even a hing of a problem. The system works well and has never given me any trouble. I have no plans on ever selling the car and I hope it last long enough for me to drive it to my own funeral. Blackstone misread my notes. It wasn't 480K miles but, 420K. And the engine is an EW1, 1500cc carb 3 valve engine, not a 2.4 FI 4 valve engine engine. I gave up on uploading the pdf file and converted it to text, instead. I hope it's not too confusing to those familiar with Blackstone reports. 84 CIVIC REPORT DATE: 9/5/2014 Honda 2.4L (K24) 4-cyl DOHCMAKE/MODEL: OIL TYPE & GRADE: Pennzoil Platinum 5W/30 UNIGasoline (Unleaded)FUEL TYPE: OIL USE INTERVAL: 4,998 Miles ADDITIONAL INFO: COMMENTSLARRY: Wow, you had 480,000 miles on the last engine? That's impressive! What's your secret? It lookslike your new rebuild is off to a good start as far as oil analysis is concerned. Universal averages showtypical wear for this engine after about 6,800 miles on the oil. Your run was a bit shorter, which is finebecause all metals read on the low side of the average range, showing some really nice wear trends goinghere. The viscosity was a little low, but that shouldn't give you any trouble. The TBN was fine at 7.2. Bringon the next 480,000 miles! ELEMENTS IN PARTS PER MILLION MI/HR on Oil 4,998 UNIVERSAL AVERAGES MI/HR on Unit 9,998 UNIT / Sample Date 08/19/14 AVERAGES LOCATION Make Up Oil Added ALUMINUM 3 3 4 CHROMIUM 1 1 0 IRON 5 5 9 COPPER 1 1 2 LEAD 0 0 1 TIN 0 0 1 MOLYBDENUM 69 69 75 NICKEL 0 0 0 MANGANESE 0 0 1 SILVER 0 0 0 TITANIUM 0 0 1 POTASSIUM 5 5 3 BORON 27 27 47 SILICON 8 8 13 SODIUM 6 6 46 CALCIUM 2375 2375 2128 MAGNESIUM 12 12 165 PHOSPHORUS 700 700 689 ZINC 817 817 812 BARIUM 0 0 0 PROPERTIES SUS Viscosity @ 210°F 51.1 55-63 cSt Viscosity @ 100°C 7.62 8.8-11.3 Flashpoint in °F 400 >365 Fuel % <0.5 <2.0 Antifreeze % 0.0 0.0 Water % 0.0 <0.1 Insolubles % TR <0.6 TBN 7.2 >1.0
Wow! You put a K24 in your Wagon? Must have been quite the swap, what with the change in direction of rotation and all. The car must be a real rocket with 2.5X the horsepower as well as some actual torque. Blackstone is sometimes laughably clueless. The 1.5 is a great engine. I miss our old Civics. The better of our two '86 Wagons would do 40 mpg on my commute and was a joy to drive. Much better turn-in than any of the Accords we've had since with far less understeer. Far less power as well, but the free-revving engine and rod shifted five speed helped the driver make the most of the power available. The old Civic could be easily shifted up and down without the clutch as well. An entertaining and useful little car. Light weight, which these Civics had, was its own reward. These may have been the best cars overall that Honda ever built, and I write this from the perspective of one who's owned eight Hondas. Happy motoring!
Day in and day out I get about 37 miles per gallon in mixed driving. Not one switch or device has failed except for the dimmer switch for the dash lights which I bypassed and run the dash on bright whenever the headlights are on. The only other problem has been the buzzer that warn you when you leave the key in the ignition with a door open. Now when ever you open a door with or without the key in the ignition, the buzzer activates and I have yet to attempt a fix. Not too bad for a 30 year old economy car.
The only real problem I ever had with our Wagons involved the switch on the stalk for the one-sweep function of the wipers. The spring grew weak and the wipers would sometimes sweep randomly. I got the assembly from a yard. Steering wheel removal for replacement is really easy in these cars. I did rebuild the three barrel Keihins in the three Civics that we had after about 120K. The rebuild consisted of a teardown and cleaning and replacement of all gaskets and o-rings. IIRC, the kits also came with new needle and seat assemblies. The difference in running on a freshly rebuilt carb was significant even though the engine had seemed to be running fine before. Smoother idle and generally cleaner running through the rev range. One of our '86 Wagons needed a starter at some point after 150K, but other than brakes and tires, that was about it. Good cars well designed and well made out of quality components. Mercedes never did any better and no other maker was even in the hunt.
I had the carb rebuilt by San Diego Carburetor (Stan) for the first time when I rebuild the engine. I can recommend his. He did a first class job at a reasonable price. The engine runs as smooth as an electric motor. I've always use Chevron gas treatment and keep the 2 gas filters changed on a regular basis. The filter near the carb has always been a larger filter with a replaceable element and a glass body so I could visually see inside. The air filter gets changed frequently, as well. I also replaced the starter for the first time with the rebuild. The original starter struggled a bit turning over a tight engine. As for the alternator, I've only replaced the brushes about every 100K miles and it's still working just fine. Utility wise this car has been the best vehicle I've ever owned.
Congrats on the 420k! I'm envious. I had an '83 Civic that I drove from '87 to '98. Sipped gas like yours (high 30s) and could get 40+ during relaxed highway trips. I finally got rid of it because a bunch annoying stuff started breaking: door handles, window cranks, turn signal stalk, wiper fluid system, etc. But that old carbureted beauty started & ran perfectly every time, and in harsh winter climates. The only repairs it ever needed were a new water pump & CV joints around 100k.
The 420K mark is really a shame. The bearings, crank and cylinder walls were in perfect condition. It was just those oil control rings that gave it up. They had lost their tension and just didn't seal any more. The compression was at new car specs, it just produced visible smoke and for that it failed California smog. For most of it's life I used Red Line and RLI engine oil and I guess they both did well.
Not open for further replies.