FK8 PRL Downpipe Install Ft. All The Headaches

What I thought would be a relatively simple install turned out to be one of trials and tribulations. I’ve read about the issues regarding the FK8 downpipe install and the studs either breaking or getting stuck but I thought I was going to get lucky – mainly because I asked Mike Wu (@toilethero) to help out and I wasn’t going to go and mess it up myself LOL. Nearly all the posts on the forums talk about how to handle the turbo studs getting stuck but I would just quickly skip by those because I thought – this probably wouldn’t happen to me. I often forget about my lucky during installs and this was one of those times…

I asked Mike a few months ago if he would be down to come by and install – with the lift and everything, I thought it would be super easy and we wouldn’t have to slide under the car on jacks or anything. He’s also the only guy that ever works on my car at Honda so I knew it was in good hands. Despite all the troubles and speedbumps that we’re about to go over – it was still in good hands either way. He did an awesome job from start to finish. I really just loosened and tightened easy bolts cause he felt sorry for me for standing around LOL.

The start of the day… On the lift and ready to go.

PRL catted downpipe V1. This is not the new high flow cat version – that one has been sold out ever since it’s been out and I couldn’t seem to get my hands on it. Shout out to Nam Vo from Nextmod Montreal for finding this and bringing it in for me so fast!

A recommendation from Winston @WNSNTY in Toronto over the last few months has been to replace the rear engine mount with the Hasport mount as it makes a huge difference. Honestly I hadn’t even thought about it – mainly because of my lack of knowledge about them. After looking into it a bit more, it seemed very highly recommended from the few that did change it so I ended up with the Hasport 62A (for street use). Thanks also to Nam for getting this as well!

Mike getting started on the process…

One of Mike’s many cars – his RSX Type-S – which is to be a donor car for the engine in another project…

Smooth sailing. About as smooth as it gets this whole install LOL

Mike luckily has access to all the tools needed including the O2 sensor socket LOL. I remember back in the day, whenever we used to do exhaust/header/pipe installs, we’d always have such a hard time getting the O2 sensors off and we never ever bothered to go and try and get a socket to make our lives easier.

He also brought a plethora of tools to help… My tools (if you recall from my lower control arm install) consist of a few socket wrenches LOL

O2 sensor socket coming off…

After we removed the underside panels, it revealed the Fujitsubo exhaust which I had never actually seen after we finished installing it a few years ago. Nice to see it’s colored nicely!

Ohhh Ahh…

A shot of the stock motor mount. This one was pretty straight forward and only help in with two bolts. PS I did most of it without Mike’s help LOOOL

Quite small compared to the Hasport one.


The beefy Hasport 62A mount in. It was a little more difficult to get in but with the help of a hammer and some lubricant, it went in with relative ease. That was that for the mount. Took all but 10 minutes.

Meanwhile on the top, we had to remove all of the bracing/frame to get easier access to the downpipe.

Top frame out

Here was the scary part. Removing the downpipe. The downpipe is held onto the turbo using 2 bolts and 2 studs/nuts. The bolts came out pretty easily. But the two studs obviously caused some headache. When you start spinning, it will either keep spinning and the nut will break off or it’ll come off. Based on feedback on Instagram, it sounded like 90% of people had it break off lol… So much for my luck.

We tried a torch but to no avail.

The nut ended breaking off with the stud – like most people had reported. A pain in the ass…

So we tried the bottom one to see if we could re-gather some confidence…

We basically tried everything. We torched the stud, we torched the housing, we tried penetrant fluid, we used vice grips, the next day Mike even came by with a stud extractor which just kept slipping… Lots of suggestions over Instagram (thank you to everyone that did) and none of them really worked.

It came down to two options – find a welder that could weld a nut onto the stud to break it loose or remove the turbo and drill out the studs. The former was an easier option…

One more cool shot of the exhaust.

Back on the lift for the day since we couldn’t make any progress.

Admittedly, I even tried to go at it myself the next day after letting it soak in penetrant with vice grips to see if I could get it off. I thought to myself – maybe if I just keep cranking at it, it’ll come off… After about 45 minutes, it didn’t even budge…. So much for that idea.

I ended up posting on Instagram asking if there were any welders that could come out and help. Just before my story expired Tony (@twofortytony) caught it and said he was the so-called Bolt Extraction Master and he could come by in the next few days to help.

He made the trek over after work last Wednesday and got ready to go.

Getting set up…

Here’s a shot of what that bottom stud looked like after we were cranking at it on the weekend with vice grips. It was basically almost rounded out.

Tony had to re-thread the studs to be able to spin a nut on it.

The first nut threaded on

The top stud with a nut threaded on

Tony getting his welding stuff set up

Here’s a shot of tony heating up the two before actually welding it.

Definitely wouldn’t have been able to do this myself hahaha

Here’s a shot of the top nut heated up to glowing red to get ready for welding.

Doing the same thing for the bottom nut

Glowing red…

And finally just one shot of him welding the nuts on. Metallurgy is a whole damn new world to me and Tony knew everything about it. After welding the nut, he educated me on the importance of letting it cool to touch before trying to crank at it right away otherwise it’ll snap. I would’ve just taken an impact to it right away and f’d myself over hella quick LOL. This is why I leave things to pros.

Tony working his magic. Slowly but surely. He also mentioned how important it was to just go back and forth slowly – gaining mm’s of thread little by little. Again, the difference in patience between myself and him… HUGE. LOL

We eventually got that bottom stud out pretty quick. But take a look at those threads – they were basically eaten within the turbo housing. Reinforcing the fact that there was no way I would’ve been able to get it out now matter how much or how long I cranked on it with vice grips LOL

The top stud gave us (Tony) a bit more trouble. It actually ended up breaking 3 times – resulting in Tony having to weld a new nut on each time.

The third time, he put an even bigger nut on it and that ended up doing the trick.

You can see how much thread we actually had left after taking it out. Literally the whole process was me holding my breath in hopes that Tony gets it out and he spent what seemed like eternity just going back and forth with a socket wrench gaining such minimal amounts of thread each time. I kept bugging him and asking if we should just throw an impact on it and he told me to sit down and relax cause it was gonna be a while LOL.

Again… That’s why I ask the friends that know better than me to help 😛

Shout out again to Tony for coming by in a jiffy and working that welding magic to get those out. Life saver. Bolt extraction master title still held by him.

Finally, the weekend arrived and Mike came by again to finish it off finally. A shot of the top hole where the stud was and the threads. The threads ended up getting eaten up pretty good while backing the stud out so mike had to re-tap the threads in order to get the new ones in.

Re-tapping went smoothly.

A quick mock up of the downpipe finally being able to go on after all that…

I decided to re-use the OEM heat shield again because the PRL downpipe had bolts lining up to them to do so. Why not? Keeps an OEM look – even though some might prefer to use a heat blanket and show it off.

At this point there wasn’t really much else to take pictures of after everything else went back on. I just kind of wanted to document the process and the headaches we went through all just for the downpipe. I guess that’s how it goes – it rarely goes easy – especially for me when installing something LOL.

All I did after was load up Hondata and reflash the ECU and take it for a test drive. All I gotta say is – it’s a whole new beast now. I’ve been waiting since December to finally get all of this on and it’s perfect.

I wanted the downpipe originally to open up the Fujitsubo a little more – it was fairly tame to begin with – pretty close to OEM if anything. It was nice but not enough. The downpipe gave it a little more growl and now it’s awesome. It’s not obnoxious and I can leave in the morning without being ratchet, unlike the Fit lol. The rear motor mount provides lots of good feedback and helps put the new found power down that Hondata helps put out. It really is like a different car now. I’ve got to play with some of the other settings to see if I can fine tune it but for now, it puts a smile on my face all over again.

Thanks again to Mike and Tony for helping out! Couldn’t have done it without you guys!

FK8 Carbon Shift Boot by “Detailed by Panem”

After installing the Hybrid Racing short shifter in the Type R and choosing to run it without the stock shift boot, a piece that has been missing has been a nice cover to fill the big gap left behind. Kind of ironic because you leave the shift boot off so you can see inside, but you also seeing the inside too much LOL. The outer trim of the boot on the inside is really ugly so it’s unsightly – all I was looking for was a piece to cover up a majority of it but still be able to display the awesome shifter piece.

About a month ago, I stumbled across a dude that made custom carbon fiber ones by hand tailored to the type of short shifter you had. That meant that depending on the short shifter, the hole, size and placement were all custom tuned to fit exactly to the shifter. About 6 weeks later, it finally arrived and I’m super stoked on how it fit and turned out. Check him out on Instagram @detailed_by_panem if you’re interested!

The piece in all it’s glory.

Hand-laid carbon and finished with a gel coat clear. Number 7!

Here you can kind of see what I mean about the outer portion of the inside boot. It’s got that trim that is used to hole the actual boot itself but is not removable.

And so, the solution is to cover it a little but but not all of it LOL. NOW it’s perfect!

Fit like a glove too. It finishes up that center area super nicely.

FK8 2022 Aesthetic Update

Sorry in advance for the iPhone photos and the random edits. I haven’t had time to take my camera out and take proper photos and whenever I do remember, I have no battery LOL!

Anyway, I haven’t really posted many updates on the Civic since I barely drove it last year and it just kind of sat there for most of the year. A big reason was because we were just moving into the new place, the garage was getting painted and the flooring done, etc and then I bought the Fit. As you all know, new toys means you forget about the old ones and that was that.

Over the winter, I decided to put the Umber bronze GT’s up for sale just to see if there was any interest. I know there aren’t many around here that are willing to spend the money on wheels if they didn’t already have a set of their own. If they didn’t sell, then no biggie. I’d just continue to run them. I was only looking for a black set to change the color scheme anyway.

Well, stars aligned for a bunch of us and the set is going to Casey and his white FK8, meanwhile Nam in Montreal was selling his set of limited Smoked Black GT’s that was for his FK8 which he sold for a Supra. It’s like it was all meant to be.

That, paired with the awesome cool fact that Yokohama Canada sponsored me this year was another blessing in disguise and I’m totally stoked to be working with them and their brand. To be honest, I was never big into the idea of being “sponsored” because I never thought I needed it. There was always those guys (you know who I’m talking about) going out there and asking for sponsorships and it just made them seem so desperate that it was more about getting “free parts” or discounts than it was about repping the brand. I think that’s why many brands have such a bad taste in their mouths when it comes to that sacred word – “sponsorship”. To put it simply, if I loved a brand and their products, I was going to buy it from whoever could get it for me. But to have the audacity to email or message a company asking for handouts is the worst.

Anyway, the Yokohama Canada team was kind enough to send me a set of 265/35 AD08R’s. Slightly wider than the 255’s that were on the Umber Bronze GT’s. What better pairing than to have it go on the new Smoked Black GT’s. Thanks again to Yokohama Canada for the set of tires. Too rad. I’m just posting some shots of the swap and some other random pics I had that were somewhat worthy of posting on the blog… I’ll take some proper photos soon!

It was a nice day a few weeks back so I decided to do the swap and get the wheels cleaned for Casey.

I love them both…

If only I could afford to keep both and run both LOL

Aria – helpful as always – drying the wheels carefully. It’s funny because she knows to be careful and never to let the cloth touch the ground or the tire because it could pick something up and scratch the paint/finish. LOL

Umber bronze in the sun is still amazing tbh.

Umber bronze off. Smoked black on.

Just a quick shot outside before pulling her back in again. Back to the issues of black wheels on a white car – basically underexposed or overexposed – no inbetween LOL

Excuse the dirty/muddy floors…

This was after I washed the floors as best I could for now until winter is officially gone. The Fit might be taking the back seat for most of the year while I enjoy the Type R this time…

With the change over to 265 AD08R’s means the need for more camber. AD08R’s run fairly wide so these would guarantee rubbing. Luckily again for me, Nam had a set of Eibach rear camber arms that were coming in that he obviously couldn’t use on his Supra, so I took them off his hands.

For only 2 bolts, this was a bitch to install without the right tools. The innermost bolt is really tucked away inside leaving very little room for maneuverability and wiggling…

Eventually was able to get it all done after borrowing some tools from a handy neighbour (Thanks Lanny!)

I just recently took it to Mike Wu over at Airdrie Honda to do some maintenance and then dial in the suspension piece. He’s the only dude that touches my car at the dealership – I don’t trust anyone else. When you find a good tech, keep em close LOL.

I asked him to dial the rear camber to -2.5 and the front to -1.6. The fronts are OK with no rubbing – even on that front tab (yet). And the rears rubbed the plastic lip underneath that you can see in the picture above. I ended up marking and dremelling  the lip that it was hitting and it has reduced the rub significantly. On big dips, it still rubs the inside metal which I don’t think I’ll be cutting anytime soon – but it’s bearable since it’s only a tiny scrape. If anything, I might get Mike to dial in to -2.7 and see if that does the trick, otherwise all is good now.

And the shot of it last night LOL. Right after this, I also got a massive rock chip which sucked. That makes for 3 massive rock chips that have spread about 10″ each on each corner. I’ve had them all filled because I ain’t about the $1200 windshield replacement life just yet LOL.

Once the weather warms up a bit more, I’ll take proper photos of the new combo.

FK8 Season End Meet 2021

Just a nice photo dump from the FK8 season ender meet that Tiegan organized at Deerfoot City. I didn’t bring my camera, but luckily Cholo from Esoteric Collective always has his and was kind enough to take photos and share them with me so I could post!

It’s been a while since I’ve driven the Type R – just been a crazy summer and with the addition of the Fit, I’ve been having too much fun with that. Back in July when we moved into our new place, the garage was inaccessible for almost two months because the driveway was being poured so I took the chance to leave the Type R out on the street since it was a new community and fairly quiet. One day as I was driving it, I did a shoulder check and noticed hand prints on the window as if someone was looking into it. That was enough to make me park it until I was able to park in the garage but as soon as that happened, I got the Fit and it basically just never got driven LOL. Even with the Mugen wing addition, it just sat there 😦

Anyway, it was a nice day to drive it one last time. Good seeing some other FK8 owners as well! Enjoy the pics from Cholo!

@mirwaiss LE Type R.

Shooting the shit.

A nice group photo of the selection of colors. Nice that it’s not just white and black – surprisingly not even a single black FK8 haha

Awesome shot of the Mugen wing 🙂

And dirty car lol. I haven’t even really cleaned it since…

Tiegan’s car and livery

Gerard’s full Spoon Fk8

Asimo sitting shotgun in Cholo’s car

Cholo’s J’s Racing valve cover

J’s racing interior as well. Super sweet

Beside me is Roel’s full Varis FK8

Cholo’s Varis FK8

The cleanest wheels of the bunch. Still brand new basically LOL

Gerard’s Spoon wheels

Jason’s TE37’s that failed the BI check MISERABLY. I said I wouldn’t be checking barrels but he just didn’t even try LOL. He used the excuse that he cleaned them at night with a flashlight but I don’t believe him.

Tiegan’s wheels passed on the other hand…

Terence’s FK8 on Gram Lights

Somewhat clean… LOL

Roel’s FK8 on champ white CE28’s

Garage dust on my exhaust LOL

Varis/Voltex rear

Mugen rear

The lineup

Group shot!