Depends on your mechanical experience, what tools you may or may not have, what parts youll be carrying over or reusing, and if there are any smog/emission/swap laws you have to follow. If your serious about doing a 1.8 swap. I strongly recommend reading [FM's quick guide](https://s3.us-west-1.amazonaws.com/instructions.flyinmiata/misc/1.8swap.pdf). There also are plenty of write ups and detailed guides that will give you an idea of what youll need and what needs to be done.


thanks for the guide!


More work than buying a 1.8 instead


That’s pretty market and budget dependent


Only if you think your time isn’t worth anything. If you’ve done this big of a job before that’s one thing, but otherwise you need to assume it will take 2-3x as long as you think it will, and that you’re bound to run into problems that set you back along the way — some critical part or tool you forgot about, something that doesn’t fit the way the guide says it should, something you mess up and break — so you might be without your Miata for months working on a job you thought you’d finish in a few weeks. I think you need to factor that into your assessment of what it’s worth. I’m a big proponent of doing your own work and do as much on my cars as I can, but I also know that best laid plans get sidetracked when you take on work that’s way beyond what you’re comfortable with. To answer OP’s question, I think this may only be a 6 or 7 on the scale of anything that’s possible, if we’re including things like ls swaps and major body work, but on a scale of things normal people might attempt in their garage, with an oil change being a 1 or 2, this is like at least a 9.


I can only speak for myself, but when it comes to working on my project car, assuming my time is worth nothing is a good assumption. I could have paid someone else to slap a turbo in it. Could have paid them to do the clutch, the brakes, the suspension, the wiring. They would have done it in probably one fifth the time it took me, and they probably would have done a better job. Just like turning on the radio will probably result in hearing better music than playing my guitar. Or watching someone on Twitch because they're better at videogames than me. I work on this car because I love working on cars. If i was a billionaire, I'd still be changing my own oil.


I was about to respond to the comment above but this sums it up better than I could, my time is free when I’m doing something I love doing


Most people have more time than money. But even if your time is worth a lot - if the market has 0 running 1.8 Miatas available in your area, but you have a 1.8 crate engine then buying a whole new car might not be less work. Might not be, but you can’t really say it’s less work without knowing more about the situation


So it’s getting ahold of all the needed parts for a swap….


So it’s tough to say definitively what’s more work…


80% of it will be easy if you are methodical. But the other 20% includes the frozen bolt / rusted SOB / stripped MF challenge, the damn thing does not line up and it should effect, the where the hell does this go, etc. This is where past life karma and the absurdity of the universe will jump your ass. So, prepare for a royal PIA if this is a first time for you - and keep hoping for the best. You will definitely not be a virgin at the end of it. Someone with experience can do it with few problems. I grew up working in an auto shop. I don't find it that much fun anymore. I would pay someone. Good luck!


Hahaha well said! Gotta love that 20% of most car repairs lmao


thanks man! i appreciate it


Actually pulling the engine/transmission and putting it back in is not that hard. Disconnect one thing at a time and label everything you will be fine . Use lots of PB blaster on bolts well in advance


I’ve done this. If you can do a clutch or engine swap yourself, then it’s a non-issue. They’re quite literally Lego. We ran a non PnP megasquirt ECU, and the wiring and tuning was the biggest pain.


There’s a full readable guide with pictures for taking a 1.8 engine out. That’s all I needed for mine so you could probably do it


11. It goes to 11.


0.2 /s


I read this and thought "0.2 Hz"


It was a lot easier than I thought it would be. Label absolutely everything, buy a couple of boxes of Ziploc bags and a sharpie and don't let anything get put down without being bagged. Do a coolant reroute with the engine out of the car, it's so much less of a pain, and the parts aren't expensive. It's like a 7-8 depending on how much the fasteners fight you. You don't have to remove the starter, alternator or header/intake manifold, you can pull the engine and install it fully dressed. It saves so much time. I would not use the Haynes manual.


If you are going to pull the motor for more power, there’s better options than the 1.8.


i think doing a 1.8 swap would be a good start for me because it should bolt up almost identically i’d imagine, but it’s going to be my first swap so i wanna take it easy i guess


Good news, motor swap is a solved problem. The options that make sense have aftermarket conversation kits (motor tranny adapters, etc.) If you search this form you’ll find good information


Most available don’t offer stock levels of NVH, and the difficulty even with a kit will be higher as nothing is ever properly bolt on. Plus, that will cost much more to do


True. What are your thoughts on the FM turbo? If OP is going to go with the 1.8, he might want to do the turbo in addition. (Some of steps are easier if the motor is out of the car.)


The fm turbo kit is pretty expensive, but you do get basically everything needed and instructions to tell you how to do it. So if you don’t know how and don’t trust yourself to do it right the first time, it’s a good kit (assuming you have the cash). I wouldn’t do a 1.6 turbo with them again though, as FM’s products really aren’t optimized for the 1.6 engines and things. If he did the swap first then thats not an issue really.


I was looking at it for my 1.6 and decided it wasn’t worth it. You use to be able to get motors from Japan with factory turbos (Kyoto agreement.) But I think that’s over now.


I'm doing this swap right now, 01 VVT 1.8 into a 1990 car. It's my second swap (first was a bmw e36 engine into an e30). The swap seems fairly straightforward so far (although VVT and a standalone make it a bit more complex and expensive). The biggest piece of advice I can give to anyone doing a project like this is to budget way higher than you think you need. Price out every part, add it up, and add 20-50%. At least. There's always some level of figuring stuff out and creative problem solving. Even with a seemingly simple swap.


Are you trying to bore out the cylinders or engine swap?


i’ve been trying to swap, but finding a 94 1.8 has been pretty rough so i’m thinking about buying a second 1.6 and getting it bored. right now the engine in the car has over 170k miles on it


I mean they ran the 1.8 for years after 94 and it’s the same engine either way, you could pull a 1.8 out of an NB or an NC and it would be less involved than tryna bore out a 1.6


13b swap 😈


If you're going to engine swap, why not just go full bore and do the k24 swap?


1.8 - $500 and (mostly) bolts right up KSwap - $5000 for a full kit and requires modification of a few things.


A k swap is far more than $5k. Double that and you’ll be close to the right number, but still low.


My friend paid $15k for a shop to do the swap for him


Oh yeah, I'm just talking about the KMiata swap kit price. Not factoring in engine, labor, etc.


Fair enough


a Kswap would be way more costly, it’s almost 6 grand for a kit that doesn’t include the motor, i would love to do it, but my bank account said “this ain’t it chief”