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I'm planning on pulling the 200K engine out this winter for some R&R on the bench. Most folks drop the K20 out the bottom, but I feel like coming out the front makes things easier. Right? Remove radiator, condenser, fans, bumper, etc. Then, pull the engine and trans out forward with a hoist...leaving the subframe in place.

Anyone try this? Any issues to note?
 

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Bump -

Another reason to try this route is most folks don't have a lift...so you'd have to jack the front of the car up several feet just to get the engine out the bottom, which necessitates at least one other jack, not to mention more time spent on the ground under the car versus on your feet.
 

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It's doable. Taking your time, 5 hours to get the motor out via the top. I leave the condenser in place with the compressor pushed off to the side. No need to drain the system of refrigerant if not needed. Hood can be left on as well, in the full service position.

I actually just pulled mine for the 2nd time yesterday. 150,000 miles back on 2/2016 and now round two at 259,000 miles. Full engine gasket replacement and clutch on my Mugen.
 

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5 hours just to remove? Or 5 hours total? I would prefer to go out the top as well but I haven't seen it documented. Do you remove the front crossbrace and top member over the valve cover?? I'm expecting so
 

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5 hours just to remove? Or 5 hours total? I would prefer to go out the top as well but I haven't seen it documented. Do you remove the front crossbrace and top member over the valve cover?? I'm expecting so
5 hours to remove. I would say it takes less time to reinstall once you're rolling since you're more aware.

-Drain coolant and transmission fluid
-Remove front and rear mounts
-Unbolt header from downpipe
-Remove both axles
-Remove airbox/rear bracket on trans and battery/tray
-Remove cowl, metal cover beneath, radiator cover, and crossbrace beneath
-Disconnect fuel supply and return lines on motor
-Disconnect heater core lines on motor
-Disconnect shifter cables from transmission
-Disconnect brake booster line
-Disconnect upper/lower radiator hoses from radiator, unplug fans/sensors and remove radiator assembly
-Unplug/remove PCM and remove main power cable from fusebox
-Unbolt/unplug A/C compressor from motor and set off to the side (i hook it above the headlight so it clears)
-Remove upper dogbone mount
-Attach engine hoist chain and raise the hoist so there is no slop
-Remove transmission mount entirely, remove top plate of side mount
-Hoist away!

Get the chain attached in a way that the motor will stay level. If it kicks at any angle, you will have a bad time. Overall it comes straight out without any issue. If you're hesitant, removing the header and belt tensioner assembly will give you a lot more clearance to pull without fear of hitting the a/c line or the bottom of the windshield area. If left in place, it gets a little tight.

Don't let the chain rub on any lines or valves - it can and will rip rubber hoses, bend fuel lines and break plastic. I've done some damage not thinking about it in the past.
 

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Ok, that's about the list of tasks I would have expected but the time came as a surprise. Thinking back it's probably in line with my previous experiences on a new-to-me vehicle though. I'm so glad to hear from someone who's done it!
 
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