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2012 Forester 2.5x 4EAT
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Discussion Starter #1
Here is my 2012 as purchased the other day. My third Subaru, but my first Forester. Came with 36,000 miles on the the odometer and the Curt basket already on top.



I don't really have a whole lot of budget for making a lot of mods like some of the amazing vehicles I've seen here, but will do what I can when I can. I'm a photographer who loves to explore the most unused backroads I can find, so my long-term goal is an adventuremobile that is still practical and affordable as a daily driver. Now that I've blown all my cash on the car itself, it'll probably be awhile before I can address any serious functional upgrades. I think I'd first like to explore giving it a little lift, adding some offroad lights, and adding some underside protection. I'm not mechanically-inclined at all however so I'll certainly have to hire that work out bit by bit.

Anyway, I'm very excited to have a Forester and to have gone from lurker to member here so I'm going to jump right into documenting the progress from the very beginning.
 

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2012 Forester 2.5x 4EAT
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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Wheels and Tires

The previous owner was running winter tires that were relatively new, but it just doesn't make sense to me to be taking summer road trips on that kind of tire. So my first order of business was to put some all seasons so I can save those winter tires for, well, winter.



I had the new tires installed onto new black steel wheels and left the winter tires on the original alloys for easy swapping. Sometime between now and winter I think I'll plasti-dip the alloys black to bring them in line with the black-and-blue theme.
 

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2012 Forester 2.5x 4EAT
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Discussion Starter #5
Next up: a bit of Plasti-Dip on the grill

Since the car came with black door handles and lots of black up there on the roof, and now with the black wheels, I decided to make my first-ever attempt at plasti-dip, on the chrome band of the grill. I left the rest of the grill alone for now. Maybe I'll go full black with it eventually but this is already a nice improvement. I didn't quite get a perfectly consistent finish with the plasti-dip but I'm still happy with the improvement over the chrome and how it brings the whole black-and-blue design together.

 

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2010 Forester 2.5x
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754 Posts
I like that color... Welcome to the Foz forum.

Might I suggest you add window tint to your mod list. It goes a long way in keeping the car cooler, not making you look like a fish when you're driving, and will help hide all the camera equipment stashed in your ride.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
 

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2010 Forester 2.5x
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754 Posts
You might be interested in checking out my member journal as well. There are a few handy modifications and or add-ons you might like.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
 

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2012 Forester 2.5x 4EAT
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Discussion Starter #9
I like that color... Welcome to the Foz forum.

Might I suggest you add window tint to your mod list. It goes a long way in keeping the car cooler, not making you look like a fish when you're driving, and will help hide all the camera equipment stashed in your ride.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
Yeah, I've been kicking that idea around. I love the idea of keeping the car cooler and discouraging prying eyes. I also think it would look pretty nice. One thing I love about how it is now (untinted) is how extremely well I can see out in all directions...do you find the tinting to hamper your visibility much, particularly at night, when needing to maneuver in reverse?

Off to peruse your journal! :smile2:
 

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2012 Forester 2.5x 4EAT
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Discussion Starter #10
Vineyard Shoot

Just days after getting the Forester, my kids and I headed down to central California to visit my sister. Just got back last night. Not far from her place is a vast vineyard that extends over numerous hillsides. I had previously contacted the owner and arranged permission to drive around on the tractor paths in the vineyard to shoot photos, so one morning at the crack of dawn, the ol' Black&Blue got a first (albeit mild) "off-road" experience.







(I was technically there to shoot photos of the vineyard itself but couldn't help turning the camera on the foz from time to time :grin2:)
 

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2012 Forester 2.5x 4EAT
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Discussion Starter #11
A first off-road-ish excursion

While visiting my sister down near Georgetown CA, I headed up a forest service road just intending to find a spot to take a few pics of the Black&Blue. But curiosity kept getting the better of me and I ended up on a 2-hour Sierra Foothills excursion navigating a road unlike any I've ever dared explore even with my previous Subarus, or any other vehicle I've ever owned. I realized, it's kind of like going on a hike, but in a car. So fun.






The first time in my life that teetering on two wheels was nothing to worry about.





Now that I'm home at catching up on work, time to think about what my next (small, inexpensive) mod is going to be. :smile2:
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Haha, good question. Coming from the direction of Cool on Hwy...193(?) I turned left in the middle of Georgetown, kind of through the historic-looking part of the town. About a mile past that maybe (?) there was a road off to the left with a Forest Service sign, Bottle Creek or Bottle Hill, something like that. It eventually took me on a long winding gravel road that descended for a while and came out into an sparsely pine-forested area that seemed to split off with multiple red dirt roads. I went down one dirt road to the left that looked invitingly bad (intending to just find a spot for pics and go back the way I came) but just kept exploring a little further and a little further.

Eventually I paused to look at the map on my phone, and I could see that the road I was on eventually wound back down towards Georgetown. Somewhere near the top it changed from Bottle-something road to just plain Hill Road. "Oh great!" I thought, "I don't need to turn around, I can just do the loop." Of course, I didn't really have a good sense of scale looking at the map. And it wasn't any huge distance at all, but I also didn't figure on how slowly I would need to drive so much of the time.

It turned out to be an interesting first-time challenge. It wasn't a road you could just drive...there were places where I had to pick my line (or whatever the terminology is) very carefully to keep the bottom of the car from dragging across something. Some rocky areas, some very storm-rutted red dirt areas, some extremely soft areas that appeared to be several inches deep of fine yellow dusty sandy dirt. And lots of those sharp jagged blue-green rocks sticking up like knives from the roadbed. Those were what scared me the most and got me thinking twice about not springing for a full-size spare.

Some two hours later (that time included numerous stops to take pics), I was not disappointed when I finally hit well-maintained gravel, then chip-seal, then good ol' asphalt. 8^D
 

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2012 Forester 2.5x 4EAT
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Discussion Starter #15
With that fun story I think you outlined what your next mod should be and it isn't "cheap" but very important for the type of driving your doing.. a skid plate for the oil pan!
You may be right. As it happens, I was just researching this last night. I'm not interested in recreational off-roading (I don't think) and was thinking I shouldn't need to add something like that, but I do want the ability to navigate serious terrain while chasing photos (and, okay, maybe for fun just a little :smile2:). The skid plate isn't quite as satisfying as a mod which changes the appearance, but I realized while driving that road that - at that moment - I didn't give a crap about how the car looked and was ONLY interested in its ability to survive and get me back to town. :laugh: So I think the skid plate is moving up in the priority list.

I can't seem to find a skid plate made for a non-turbo SH. Having scoured their product list last night and again this morning, it seems the only one Primitive offers specifies turbo models, and I don't know how different these are underneath? And can't seem to find anyone else offering this. Well, I'll go do some reading in other threads and see what I can find out. Thank you for the wise suggestion. :smile2:
 

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2010 Forester 2.5x
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754 Posts
I'll sell you my front skid plate and help you bolt it on if you want.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
 

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2012 Forester 2.5x 4EAT
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Discussion Starter #19
Oil consumption

Today I suddenly realized I'd gone about 1,500 miles since my last oil change (which had also been my first oil change, performed shortly after I bought the car). It took about 1.5 quarts to bring it back to full :icon_eek: ...so..yeah, I guess I've got that problem along with so many others.
 
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