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6G Celicas Forums > 6th Generation Celica > My Project
Well, 1st I would like to say thanks to this great website for support of the 6gen Celica and all member that support it. Without it, many 6gen owner will be lost on how to mod their Celica. Here my swap story to help many future 6gen Celica owner and current, on their own project and journey. Due to many support on this site, I was able to get many information to get my project done. I would like to share my project story with to all Celica owner.

I started with a stock 6gen ST Celica A/T Tran, was given to me, by my dad, it was his car. That was 14 years ago. At that time, there were little to no support for Celica, Internet starting to get popular. I started with custom home made CAI intake made for a Honda, Added muffler, High Supra spolier, and C5 Nippion 17' rims. I was a cool ride back then. Only issue was, lack of power and lack of performance support at that time. I enjoy it for 2 1/2 years. During those times, had street war with many friends over who got the fast ride, well, A/T and slow 7afe, could even take out a stock civic SI on HWY. Only thing better than their were, Celica came with great suspension stock, so ride feels much sporty than any Civic at that time. So it was time for a upgrade and get a 5spd.

2001, Purchase my new Celica GT 5spd.

I started it with basic performance mode, like intake, 2 1/4 inch exhast pipe, cat-convert gutted, muffler. Installed ACT 4 puck clutch. Than, being an dummy rolleyes.gif at that time, was told that by adding a aftermarket will gain more HP, I custom a AEM adjustable Fuel pressure regulator. I did not install hose clamp to fuel line, too excite.... biggrin.gif took it out for test drive. On way back, started to smell fuel on way home and being a idot again, did not shut car off, added hose clamp, while all that going on. Fuel caught on fire, Massive Fire Ball under the hood. Lucky much brother was home, he grab the garden hose and hose fire out and kill car too. I scramble around trying to figure what's just happen. mad.gif . Lucky I was wearing a hat, so my hair didn't get crispy, but every hair on my face got crispy.
Bad part, was I only got to enjoy my new ride for less than 1 1/2 before all this happen.

Well, it was time to put car in garage and pay off my loan for the car 1st and deal with it later. 9G's after finance, which was under my mom name.
Time to check out the damaged done. Will need complete engine harness, $500-$1000 used to new. Not worth it. Than some of my Toyota buddy recm. I do a 3sgte swap and AWD conversion. I ponder on it. My mechanic skills level at that time was ok, when comes to engine swap and wiring work. Then, a buddy informed me that he has a ST165 Alltrac with poor body condition, with a good running motor. I didn't hesitate to buy it, I figure, since it was a whole car, it shouldn't be that bad to may it work on my car. I pick it up for $1000, I wanted a 3rd gen at that time, well those time it was like $4000-$5000 to get. I didn't have that kind of money. I went to look for help or advice and information to how swap was done. Well, I was S.O.L. I was on my own, I've already purchase the car.

I started with what I know to do, I swap engine into my car, I knew it was too much work to make it a AWD. I kept it FWD. Went to take a crack at doing the wiring conversion. Than, I realize, shoot, this is out of my league. I promise my wife and my mom I can fix my car and get it running. Well, its time to put back in the garage and let it be until I can figure out what to do.

9 1/2 years later and 5 kids later. Went through 2 Honda, DA Integra with JDM B16A swap and CRX with B18A swap that I swapped. Every day open the garage and see my beloved Celica park and collecting DUST. It was time to get it going. I own two nice Honda I built, but lack that true sport car feels. I started with looking around for donor car. Finally found one, got it cheap. Now I have a full compete undamaged engine harness to work with and much, much more online support, like 6gc. Also my mechanic skills has improve greatly over the years. I picked up my 2nd Celica parts car, come to find out it was still in good shape and just in need of a motor. My best freinds was in need of a car. So, I offer him the car. Picked car up for only $150, I told him with a new engine and etc. stuff to get it running properly, he got a car for less than a grand.
So, we did. Still need another parts car, picked up another Celica, Well this one turn out to be very nice too. $300 and all it needed was strut mounts, it was sticking and binding, reason why it was for sell, because seller couldn't figure what was wrong with the car. My litte brother need a car too. So I gave that to him. Fixed it up and running like a champ, until he rear ended a city bus and total it.
Left- brother car. middle-my car. right- my buddy car.

Look like luck was on my side, found 3rd celica for parts car for cheap also. Me and my buddy both went in on this one, we both needed parts.
Finally 9 1/2 years later my car will run. I almost gave up, and just sell my car as a uncomplete swap. But seeing my buddy driving his Celica and him doing mod. on it, made have a feel for my car again.
I finally I went for it and perform the wiring conversion, I've talk with Dr.Tweak about sending it out for him to do it. But, I wanted to challenge myself. Spent aleast 2 week working on it. Got it done, installed harness and turn key over for the very 1st time. I finally hear injector spray, which is a good sign. When I 1st done the wiring conversion, I was missing some (+) to engine harness, that why I wasn't able to get it running years early. Crank engine over, and it's "Alive" sounded awsome, I finally hear how my engine sounded after all.

Took it for a drive, around the block only, expire tabs, 9 1/2 years, and exhaust, just down pipe only. LOud!!!!!. I was happy the I overcome what many people told me I couldn't do.
I wasn't happy about how everything look. Wiring to messing, will take many more hours to clean up, maybe be dissapoint on performance of it. Finally, I made my mind and to go with 3rd gen swap, I figure that the cost to make this 1s gen to run to my personal standard to cost of just getting a 3rd gen, 3rd gen would be more worth it. It will look cleaner, look more OEM. and last much more updated and more power as stock trim. Then, I went for it and order up my 3rd gen 3sgte.

Again, thanks to all 6gc memeber. I found all the resources here and other 3sgte support. It made this swap go extremely easy and well. By the time I got my engine and swap it in. Had my car running and test drive in 2 days. I drove around for about months with just down pipe. LOud!!! and fun, Finally, got a custom 3" exhaust made, cost me $400 and guy even coated exhaust with rusted procted paint too, for free.
I was amaze on the performance of it. It was better than I thought it would be. Traction and suspension was my next issue I have to take care of. Went to track for the very 1st time, with a car and to a track.
With traction issue, bad tires and weak suspension. I was only to dail in my best time at 14.40 @ 98.33 MPH. I had to run my tires at 15 psi just to have traction at launch without wheel spin, but that hurt me in top end, due to draging tire. My fastest clock trap speed was at 102 mph, higher tire pressure, but running at 16s, due poor 60ft time.

On the street, It was a much faster car, doesn't matter what my quarter miles time is, 20-100mph was were my car was at its best performance.
Took it to dyno, put down 238hp and 249tq at 14-15 psi. Will post dyno sheet when I find it. I was diving daily at 17 psi, Not sure what power I was putting down, did get at chance to go back to dyno it. My cheap ebay boost controller installed at time of dyno, crap out on me, would not hold above 14-15 psi. It felt more like 260-280whp or more at that 17 psi. I had many plan for upgrade. Plan on doing E153 tranny convert, better tires, suspension. Right after I upgraded my suspension- megan coliver, and new tires. My turbo went bad, Turbine went, due to shaft play. E153 tranny swap had to be put on hold.

Turbo upgrade. Koracing 50trim KO Street Brawler Precision Turbo Kit- $2300

Installed my new turbo kit, took it out for test dive, much more lag, but top end even better. Next day, I notices it was smoking more from exhaust, I notices that when I borrow a buddy CT26, when my turbo went out, I didn't think of it, I though maybe his turbo maybe leaking. I knew I was getting my new turbo, so I let it go.
Bad news few days later after that. I took it hard, like I was did with my stock turbo, I notices smoke coming from engine bay. open hood and notices massive oil spills all over engine bay. It was coming out from PCV hose that was for factory oil catch can. I did get one when I got my engine, so I just left it open.

I peform a engine compression test, bad news, #1 clyinder low compression. 90psi, added oil and raised to 160psi. Leak down test shows, bads pistion rings or cracked pistion ringland.
Took engine apart. Found #1 clyinder badly cracked ringland, when remove piston ring, part of ringland came off. all clyinder ringland cracked.
Time for engine rebulit. I called up Koracing and got a good deal on a full packages top and bottom rebuilt parts.
For my built, I went with Brain Crowers valve springs, BC 264 cams, Fidanza cam gear, Eagle Rods, Wiesco Piston. ARP head bolt, ACL race bearing.
Rebuilt start.

2012 Plan- Now that Rebuilt is done and year later and engine finally broke in. 2000 miles on engine. Engine is running great, turbo spooling way faster that when it was stock, will due to engine was starting to fail anyway. BC 264 cams on engine was a hugh plus on top end flow to the turbo. New engine rebuilt with new new turbo. Dyno at 311whp @ 14psi. Due to $150 hrs rate, After dailing in cam gear to setting to what I want. I've have to call done. Due to still running on stock ECU. My setup was limit. Time for ECU upgrade. I know my S54 tranny will not hold up very long with my new power goal I'm trying to get, but E153 have to wait at this time. Just order my EMS. hope to push past 400whp this year.

Along with Wolfkatz Top Feed Fuel Rail and 1200cc Injector
These are Picture borrow from Koracing, Once it comes in, I'll post them and along with my new dyno result and picture update and video. Thanks everyone.
very inspirational story man.
Hopefully one day I'll be able to write the same about mine. smile.gif!
Thanks Cheela, Hows Korean? Hope to see you back in the state soon. I've just met a new celica owner that just move into town, He move from WI, and he stated that he never met you in person, but have park next to your Celica at some soccer tourney. And see you driving around. I ask him if he met you, while living in WI. That whats he told me.
Korea's an adventure. smile.gif but I miss my celica so much. hahahah.
also sad that I won't be there for the midwest meet. frown.gif so many members seem to be coming.
and what a small world huh? that's funny. You should show them to 6gc.

I still remember the ride in your cell, it was amazing! makes me want a 3sgte for SURE now.
7a was fun and good for getting around town but, now I want that 400hp. hahahah. let's get you up there!
Update, My Hydra Nemesis Ecu, 1200cc injector and fuel rail made it in. Just got it dyno today. Made 412whp and 356tq at 24.7lb boost with max speed at only 89mph.
Shooting for 450 or more but, my intercooler pipe blew off one time and still using the S54 tranny. I call it good for now. Plan for higher boost need time, when I convert to E153 tranny.
Reason for much higher boost level is due to my low com head gasket. 1.8mm thick. Require higher boost, but safer.

Getting a retune. Kris from KoRacing coming in town Tomorrow to retune my car. Be doing some street tune for long term driving, then Tuesgay for dyno tune for full throttle tuning. Hope to see higher hp and bettet tune for daily driver. Widh me some luck
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