SH-AWD Systems in RL - Honda-Tech - Honda Forum Discussion

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SH-AWD Systems in RL

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Old 03-14-2017, 10:52 AM   #1
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Default SH-AWD Systems in RL

Hi fellas,
Looking into making my '01 Prelude SH-AWD. I need to do more research myself really but I thought I'd post up an inquiry into how the system works, control module wise, power flow wise etc.
I'm looking into using the J series 3.5L V6 and the SH-AWD drivetrain from an second generation KB1 chassis RL.
I'll have no problem pulling the project off, its just a matter of money and info I need at the moment. I'm looking to create the best Prelude I can given I have a salvage KB1 Acura RL, creating a sort of RL/Prelude frankenstein.
I know the SH-AWD system can send as much as 70% of the power to the rear and up to 100% of that rear power to the outside rear wheel.
How does it operate under normal driving? I know its mainly FWD but whats the power distribution front/rear?
Is the front differential open?
I will likely go supercharged with a rotrex, would it make most sense to run the motor on a stand alone ems?
What computer modules run the SH-AWD system and how do they tie into the engine ecu and body modules?
I'm likely going to want to run some custom electronics that will allow for different programmable settings for the rear and center differentials, does anybody have details on how the internals of the modules work or what parameters/sensors /ins and outs there are?
What are the harness layouts/connectors for the engine harness, body control modules, transmission control modules and SH-AWD control modules?
Does anyone have access to technical data or repair data for the RL? Schematics/Pin-outs etc.?

Heres what I'm expecting to use from the RL:
-J35A8 V6
-Front Subframe/Cradle
If I use this I will modify the subframe and/or body of the Prelude to mate the two and likely run RL springs/shocks along with fabricated mounts for RL upper control arms.
-Power Steering Rack
-Rear Suspension/Differential Subframe
-SH-AWD Rear Differential
-SH-AWD Automatic Transmission
-Engine ECU
-Engine Harness
-Transmission Control Module and Wiring
-Paddle Shifters and Wiring
-Gauge Cluster (For retrofit into the Prelude)
-Front and Rear Brakes (Aluminum 4-piston Calipers with 12.6" Rotors and Aluminum 1-Piston Calipers with 12.2" Rotors)
-Front Headlights (For retrofit into Prelude w/ or w/o Active Front Lighting System) HID Projectors/Ballasts/Bulbs

Any input/advice/info is greatly appreciated, I'm looking to find that 5% of people that have alot of experience with RL's and the SH-AWD system or maybe your new to the scene and have nothing to add but want to follow along on progress, either way, thanks guys.


(My BB6 in Electron Blue)

Last edited by Accordian47; 03-14-2017 at 01:27 PM.
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:04 PM   #2
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Default Re: SH-AWD Systems in RL

So far I've found that there are quite a few different variants of the sh-awd system.
The Acura RDX, Acura RL, Acura TL and Acura MDX all have systems that differ.
Some have different "acceleration devices" that speed up rear wheel drive a certain percentage faster than the front. (Some 1.7% others 5.7%)
Some have system activation in as early as first gear, others second gear.
Some used a more precise control method of the electromagnetic clutches to provide a limited slip function of the differential.
Some sh-awd systems were part of a hybrid electric drive system.
None of the sh-awd systems utilize a center differential.
First system was introduced in late 2004 with the second generation 2005 Acura RL.
Two different systems were introduced late 2006 with the new 2007 Acura RDX and the new second generation 2007 Acura MDX.
In late 2008, another system was introduced with the Acura RL with the mid-model-change of the 2009 Acura RL.
Another system was introduced in late 2008 with the 2009 Acura TL.

Here are the sensors and systems that the sh-awd systems uses and is integrated with:
3 or 4 channel (model dependent) Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)
4 channel Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA)
Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD)
Throttle control system
Yaw Angle Sensor
Speed sensor
Steering Angle sensor
Lateral G-Force sensor

I'd still like to find more information on how the sh-awd system is integrated into other control modules and how the wiring harnesses are connected.
Basically, I want to lay out the wiring for the system to be run in another car obviously, with as little as possible.
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:03 PM   #3
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Default Re: SH-AWD Systems in RL

Im in the middle of doing a 2008 Fit swap and its pretty involved, since Ive started I have been researching a K23 RDX swap myself. I cant give you too much on the AWD systems but as far as wiring, make sure you get everything you can from the donor. Little things like the electrical load detector (ELD) was something I overlooked (never heard of) and will cost me a few unnecessary dollars since I have to source a new one. Cant wait to see what you come up with!
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