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EJ22T swap into EA81 wagon + other stuff


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10 replies to this topic

#1 scrap487

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 01:02 PM

ok so I've seriously been considering an EJ swap for my stockish ea81 wagon, and I've been thinking more and more why settle for just an N/A EJ22? I potentially have a line on a wrecked turbo legacy, just going to be a little bit before I get enough money coming in to start the project cause I just got a new job and I'm not starting till next monday.

This will be my first subaru motor swap, and I've never worked with forced induction here so my experiance is lacking, is there anyone near the portland area that has done a similar swap? or has some experiance that may be willing to lend some help when the time comes for tuning and such?

My goal is to end up with a turbocharged motor in a light car pushing near 200hp+. Part of my desire for this swap other than it would be wicked fun, is my Ex-gfs dad has a '90 corvette(w/ the L98 and AT, not the ZR-1) he's always bragging about and talking smack about subarus... um yeah so I want to put him in his place.

Any suggestions?

I figure the ea82 d/r 5 speed wont hold up to that kind of power, so I think I'm going to have to find an awd 5mt out of a legacy, should I go with the 4.11 or 3.9 gears?

For the internals of the motor, what machine work should I consider doing? Cams? Pistons and C/R? What about heads; are the turbo heads best to use and what should I have done to those?

I'm thinking I will also need bigger better brakes, and I dont know if the ea81 axles and hubs would hold up to that much power... I was reading about the 5lug swap, but it seems like it requires a lot of xt parts which are somewhat hard to find used, can I use many parts off the wrecked legacy with or without a lot of custom fabrication and have it be safe?

Anyways thanks, I'm sure I'll think of more questions or ideas as I do more searching and researching. My goal is to get the ALL of the parts i need for the swap by the end of october and then get everything prepped and ready before I begin the swap, and I'm hoping I can have the swap done by January.

Edit: forgot about wiring, I have read about the temp and oil pressure gauges, but as far as wiring in all the sensors computers and all that stuff... also I'm guessing with this kind of project and my goals, I wouldnt be using stock ignition compenents or injects etc... I found a very helpful page that was made by numbchux but the wiring section of it either disappeared or was never there....

#2 RavenTBK

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 04:08 PM

Rather than gathering up individual parts, why not go this route and get it all at once?

http://cgi.ebay.com/...1QQcmdZViewItem
EJ20G, MT5 AWD tranny, ECU, harness, etc.

If I wasnt afraid of the swap itself and the wiring mess (not to mention the possible shearing of axles and other twisted parts that cant handle the extra power), I'd just grab something like this for my Brat and ride, since everything is included.

Best of luck with your plans...
.R

#3 Numbchux

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 04:09 PM

well, let's see, you'll need a turbo EA81 crossmember, or a custom up-pipe (that goes behind the crossmember), to get the exhaust gases up to the turbo.

as far as the motor goes, the EJ22Ts already have forged internals, etc. so any machine work you do will be above and beyond that. you could have your crank balance for smoother running, and higher redline. you could have your cylindars bored and get larger pistons, you could get pistons that lower your CR (more peak boost, more lag). the heads are pretty good, but you could get WRX heads (DOHC) and improve your flow (a buddy of mine is doing this, DOHC EJ22T....essentially a 22b motor). BUT, I think the 200hp mark could be easily done with an improved turbo, and better flowing exhaust/intake. just do some maintenence things on the motor while it's out (once it's in, you won't be able to do much work on it, they're tight even in the EA82 engine bay, it'll be worse in the EA81s...)

and as I'm reminded as I see raven's post. the open deck EJ20's are all easily capable of 200-300hp. even in USDM form, and an EJ20G like that one would be closed deck, very easily capable of 300+hp. an EJ20G like that one would also be newer, which would mean OBDII....which means 2 things, ALOT easier to tune/modify and have it run well, but harder to wire, not terribly, but there is more to it, and a slightly more complex ECU....just something to consider

yea....I just started that EJ swap page, so it's not done yet...I suppose I should put a little 'under construction' graphic on there or something.....but I'll finish it soon. but essentially you want to pull all the wiring from the firewall forward, without cutting anything. Then strip it down so that all you have are the wires to the motor/sensors, and the ECU, the few gauge wires, and CEL read connectors.

of course, if you're doing some fancy engine management....that's a bit different, and depends on which one you go with.

5-lug on an EA81 is pretty different, because your strut towers only have 2 holes, instead of EA82's and EJ's that have 3. which might mean you could just drill 2 or 3 holes in the right place, reinforce them, and be set. but I don't know. EA81 struts will not work with XT6 or legacy knuckles, however. If you can convert your strut towers to 3 hole, you can use legacy knuckles/hubs/rotors/calipers/struts/springs/axles. but you'll still need XT6 control arms, and rear hubs/rotors/backing plates and calipers (if you don't already have them, they're the same as 4-lug calipers) if you do use legacy front brakes, you'll lose you're handbrake, so you'll probably want to use 200SX rear calipers so you'll have a parking brake (I did a nifty little write-up in the USRM on how to do that). *This is all speculation...someone please correct me if I'm wrong*

I wouldn't say the D/R 5-speed is too weak, they haven't really been tested. BUT, I'd rather go with the legacy 4.111 tranny. having driven a legacy with that tranny for a few months this summer, it's real nice. the RX FT4WD tranny is geared too short, even for the N/A EJ22. even though it's final ratio is only 3.70, the gears are too low. it's only advantage is the lockable center (way cool), but the legacies have a viscous LSD center anyway, so the performance is real similar. And PT4WD would suck, cause FWD is pretty much useless in an EA car with the torque of the EJ motor.

whew....did I miss anything?

and I'll try to work on that page some more tomorrow....but don't worry, it'll be done by the time you get ready to do your swap. I may even have a pdf version for easy printing.


EDIT: I found a pic of my buddies custom up-pipe to go behind the crossmember and axle on his impreza when he turbo'd it:
Posted Image

also, you'll want XT6 sway bars. seriously, if you're serious about this, get an XT6 parts car, especially if it's a 5-speed. I'd use a 3.90 5MT from an XT6 for this aswell....and some (if not all...I'm not sure) still had a locking center diff!

#4 scrap487

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 04:30 PM

hmm... the less work the better, I'm sure I could live through the wiring if the ej20g is capable of that much. As far as expense goes would it be cheaper to go with said wrecked turbo legacy and find a tranny, or by something similar to that ej20g complete w/ tranny and everything? I know its my project but what would you guys recomend... as soon as you said 300hp easy you got my attention and if thats easily done without too much internal work if any, and for the same cost.... :burnout:

suddenly going to work next monday doesnt seem to be soon enough

thanks chux... alot of the stuff you've written is a big help. XT6s or XTs even are very hard to come by around here(arent they everywhere?), so those parts may be hard to come by. Those transmissions with the locking center diff, were those cars part time 4wd or full time? cause as you said if it was only PT it would suck because with that much power fwd wont cut it. Isnt it possible of modifying the newer subaru transmissions to have the center diff lock? I need to read up some more on that, I remember reading that someone had done that, something like duty solenoid c or something like that, I think it was andyjo?

#5 Numbchux

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 04:39 PM

hmm... the less work the better, I'm sure I could live through the wiring if the ej20g is capable of that much. As far as expense goes would it be cheaper to go with said wrecked turbo legacy and find a tranny, or by something similar to that ej20g complete w/ tranny and everything? I know its my project but what would you guys recomend... as soon as you said 300hp easy you got my attention and if thats easily done without too much internal work if any, and for the same cost.... :burnout:

suddenly going to work next monday doesnt seem to be soon enough


yep, the EJ20G's are VERY capable. there's a local guy here who bought a front clip very much like that one, and put it in his impreza L. and holy crap is it fast!!! I beleive he's pushing high-200s to the wheels.

I just realized it's DOHC though....you may not have enough room for a DOHC motor between the framerails. hopefully someone else will comment on that...

also, what tranny does your wrecked t-leg have? if it's a 3.90 5-speed, that'd be a real nice setup. also, it should have a rear VLSD aswell. although most of those JDM EJ20G front clips include the rear LSD aswell....something to think about.

also, keep in mind, that the displacement difference will be noticable on your torque curve. both in the sheer torque that the motor can put out, and the turbo lag. it may be a bit easier to get the peak hp mark you're looking for, but could be substantially less driveable....

yes, XT's are hard to come by, (remember, 4-cyl XTs are only 4-lug....just an EA82 with a fancy body. need an XT6 for 5-lug), but you only need one. I stumbled across one in a junkyard here last winter (that's right...MN winter...in a junkyard), and pretty much stripped it. seats, and all the suspension.

the Duty C center diff lock mod is only for the automatics

the center diff lock is available on RX full-time 4WD trannies, and XT6 5MT single range trannies. I don't think it was available on any other FT4WD cars. obviously, the PT4WD trannies are locking center, but when they're unlocked (need to be for pavement...you know this) they're FWD.

#6 scrap487

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 04:58 PM

the wrecked lego has a toasted automatic tranny, tho still good enough to drive onto a trailer apparrently

Whats the differance in width between the DOHC and SOHC heads? if its not too much I may be willing to modify the framerails if anyone knows where I can grab some measurements. I know an ea82 will fit into an ea81 body with some cutting of the frame, and if the ej20g isnt too much wider than that I wont be worried about it. Doesnt look like a custom/modified uppipe would be too hard to make, may be easier than finding an ea81 turbo crossmember and installing that.

#7 Numbchux

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 05:08 PM

well, I can't say about DOHC, but I just went out and looked on my 2 wagons. and it appears that a SOHC EJ22 is almost exactly the same width as an EA82. they both appear to have about an inch between the valve cover and the framerail on either side. maybe a bit more on the EJ22.

I don't know that the DOHC ones are wider, but I think so. also keep in mind, that if you use a DOHC engine, you'll need to pull it to replace spark plugs.....

#8 scrap487

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 05:16 PM

well, I can't say about DOHC, but I just went out and looked on my 2 wagons. and it appears that a SOHC EJ22 is almost exactly the same width as an EA82. they both appear to have about an inch between the valve cover and the framerail on either side. maybe a bit more on the EJ22.

I don't know that the DOHC ones are wider, but I think so. also keep in mind, that if you use a DOHC engine, you'll need to pull it to replace spark plugs.....



:lol: that might make trouble shooting a bit more difficult when I run into problems... do you know if the ej22t is dohc?

I do want a turbocharged engine... but is it possible(without costing an extra arm leg and maybe an eyeball) to get a N/A SOHC motor to put out 200+?

#9 Numbchux

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 06:03 PM

:lol: that might make trouble shooting a bit more difficult when I run into problems... do you know if the ej22t is dohc?

I do want a turbocharged engine... but is it possible(without costing an extra arm leg and maybe an eyeball) to get a N/A SOHC motor to put out 200+?


the EJ22t from the t-leg is SOHC

a 200hp N/A EJ22 would be very costly. especially in SOHC form. I hear that an EJ257 (sti block) with DOHC EJ20 heads (high CR), can be a pretty potent combo. but just the EJ257 shortblock will probably be more expensive than that EJ20G clip...

#10 scrap487

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 06:54 PM

so untill I get some feed back about the DOHC engines, I'm guessing the ej22t is my best bet.

Ok, so for the ej22t how would I coax 200+hp out of it from the 160 stock hp? I know more fuel + more air + bigger spark = more power... so bigger injectors, better turbo, etc... what parts specifically would I be looking at. I'm compiling a list of everything I will need for either the ej20g option or ej22t...

thanks for all the suggestions and help!

ps anyone know of any jdm importers in the pdx area? I didnt have much luck finding one today.

#11 Numbchux

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 07:38 PM

so untill I get some feed back about the DOHC engines, I'm guessing the ej22t is my best bet.

Ok, so for the ej22t how would I coax 200+hp out of it from the 160 stock hp? I know more fuel + more air + bigger spark = more power... so bigger injectors, better turbo, etc... what parts specifically would I be looking at. I'm compiling a list of everything I will need for either the ej20g option or ej22t...

thanks for all the suggestions and help!

ps anyone know of any jdm importers in the pdx area? I didnt have much luck finding one today.


the injectors are fine. once the MAF/MAP (I forget which it uses) detects more air, it'll have the injectors put in more fuel. the stock airbox is good for about 300hp, but is hard to fit in the EA engine bay, easiest solution is a cone filter. not much gain in the power department, but it'll sound sweet, and ease the install process.

pretty much all you'll need is exhaust and turbo. the stock VF11 is not a very good turbo, and the TD04 (stock WRX) is also a bit small, both are pretty well suited to the EA82t, but not so much to the EJ20/22.

now, I don't know what you're options are exactly for turbos, but there are tons. a question like that is better suited for places like Nasioc.com or RS25.com where there will be tons of people with flow charts and dyno sheets etc. There'll be way more information about building an EJ motor on those sites. and maybe even a local club. most of what I know is from our local club, I've helped in many builds in the MNSubaru club.




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