Subaru Forester Owners Forum banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Introduction:
Hello Everyone,

This is my first ever Subaru and actually the first time owning a car in over 3 years. I bought her back in September and have since already put over 13K miles on it (5k in the first 5 weeks actually) and I am in love with my decision. I went through a few options before finally ending up with the forester sport, none of which matter. My goal was to get something that was capable of lite offroading and also something that made it relatively easy to sleep inside of. I am not quite brave enough to camp alone in the middle of nowhere in a hammock or tent yet plus "stealth" camping is of interest to me.

Anyways, that's enough backstory on to the more interesting bits. @Sdcerreta encouraged me to create my own journal of my modz and he has been my primary source of inspiration so here we go. This first post will Act as a table of contents in the event that this thread get's long it'll be easy for someone to quickly see all the mods in one post. I will also be posting some stats in this first post that I will try to keep as up to date as possible. First mod post will be the second post!

Most Recent Pic:
553380

Vehicle Stats:
Birthday: Sept. 2020
Mileage: >14,000
Nights Spent inside: ~14
Most Consecutive Nights: 3
National Parks Visited: 9
States Visited: 13
Offroad Journeys: 6
Times Stuck: 1

Table of Contents:
Page 1 | Post #2: Skid Plates
Page 1 | Post #3: Camper"van" Pt.1 (basics)
Page 1 | Post #7: Silicone License Plate Frame
Page 1 | Post #7: Full Size Stock Spare Tire & Gear
Page 1 | Post #7: STI Tower Strut Brace
Page 1 | Post #7: Wind Deflectors & Tint
Page 1 | Post #7: Mud Flaps
Page 1 | Post #7: Replacement Fuse Box Door
Page 1 | Post #7: Floormats
Page 1 | Post #11: Recovery Gear
Page 1 | Post #16: Gear Box
Page 2 | Post #21: Camper"van" Pt. 2 (complete setup)

Enjoy
 

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Skid Plates:
The front Skid Plate directly from Subaru is the very first mod I ever did. Underbody protection is something I wanted as I planned to take this car offroad (which I did the very first weekend) and maybe push some limits one day. Many months later I also installed the Primitive Racing Rear and Mid Skid Plates to add to the protection. I can't see them but it's nice peace of mind to know I did what I could to protect her.

551945

(Subaru Front Skid Plate)

551946

(Primitive Racing Mid Skid Plate)

551947

(Primitive Racing Rear Skid Plate (ignore the mud I got STUCK last weekend, needed winched out))
 

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Camper"van" Bed:
Okay so this is my favorite part of the car and my favorite mod. It took a lot of planning, measuring, searching, and a lil bit of DIY. So I almost, allllmooost did not go with the forester for 1 reason and 1 reason alone and that is that the seats didn't fold completely flat. The whole point of the car was for me to sleep in it. I bought it because I was tired of not being able to go camping because I depended on friends for the ride, I bought it to sleep inside.

Anyways, I stuck with the forester since it was my favorite in every other aspect and I thought I could solve the no flat seats problem. I had originally looked into a couple systems to mitigate the issue. Theres a Canadian company that make a platform with telescoping tubes but I wasn't a fan of how the space beneath the platform was practically wasted so I decided against that. I've saw some videos on youtube of people that have made boxes with pullout shelving and I thought this would be the route I would take. I ultimately decided against the platform for several reasons: one, I was concerned about rattles while driving cause I'm a pretty novice builder and two, I was concerned that the platform plus mattress would reduce the headroom so much that I wouldn't be able to sit in the back and hang out. So my actual solution was to just ignore it and get a 4" mattress and so that's what I did! As long as I park the car with the nose 2-3 degrees downward then I don't even notice the seats not being perfectly flat at all.

I will redo this post at a later date to show the entire camp setup that I have but this will get the point across for now and was the second mod I did after the front skid plate.

551949

(Bed, Sheet & Pillow)

So this is the bed I use! It's a 4" memory foam tri-fold mattress so this will fold out into a full length twin-size bed. I keep the mattress with the sheet on and pillow in my bed at all times cause you never know when you're going to need a nap and I live in a small 1 bedroom apartment with little storage to spare. I love how it fits in the cargo area perfectly and I still have room on top if I need the space. It's also super light so if I ever need to take it out for more space it's not a big deal to do so. The wood you see is what I currently use to level the car and/or get the booty in the air to get that angle I like.

551950

(Board covered in indoor/outdoor carpet)

Okay so the grey thing on the floor sorta underneath the bed is my solution to the floor gap. This is just a piece of sturdy wood that I bought, cut, and wrapped with indoor/outdoor carpet. I wrapped it in the carpet to protect the car and other belongings from dings and scratches; the carpet secured the carpet with staples. I cut the wood to fit perfectly in the cargo space, I wanted it to be as long as possible while still fitting perfectly flat in the cargo area behind the seats.

551951

(Board filling the floor gap)

Here you can see that this rests perfectly on the edge of the seat and the center console. Now usually I have a Yeti 35 Tundra cooler on the rear passenger side floor and a plastic container on the other side floor which also supports the board. I just took pics real quick this afternoon and didn't want to lug everything out there so that is why I said I will redo this post in the future when I have the proper setup. I meticulously measured coolers to find the perfect size cooler so it rests on the carseat tracks and that 2x4 and it's the exact height of the folded seats. Similarly on the other side I got a plastic container in which I keep all my gear and supplies in which fit perfectly on the other side achieving the same effect.

551952

(Bed)

Just a quick close up shot of the bed pulled out. You can't tell in this pic but the pillow is directly under the sunroof, this makes for amazing stargazing at night.

551953

(4" memory foam tri-fold twin mattress)

Just wanted to show the how the full bed fits back there. This is really comfortable and the mattress is soft enough where I don't feel the angle by the seats at all. Obviously when I am camping I take blankets with me and I actually keep a blanket back there all the time but I took out recently. Also, they do make a 6" thick mattresses which I may try out in the future but I was initially worried that even 2" would reduce too much headroom. I am a minimalist so I always try to get away with the smallest things.

This whole setup takes less than a minute to setup and take down. The longest part is waiting moving the front seat forward because the electronics are so slow. Overall I am really happy with it and happy it's a simple solution for when I don't feel like sleeping in the hammock or tent. I have slept back there with another person a few times and it's plenty of room! I pretty much just park anywhere that doesn't disallow no overnight parking including National Parks or down an off-road trail.

This is my Camper"van"
 

·
Premium Member
2019 Forester Sport CVT
Joined
·
651 Posts
I see your Tuxmats! Very cool. I love these floor mats. Mine are filthy from the Utah sand and I can't wait to get home and give the car a bath and clean these mats.
 

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Haha I figured it happened I gotta track it. Yeah, I have to post the rest of the mods but I just got the tuxmats this week, they are beautiful!
 

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Alright, here we go:
I'm gonna lump all the remaining ones together since they are small and less exciting as the above for the most part. Here we go.

552223

(Silicone license plate frame)

I've had some fancy license plate frames in the past and they always end up wearing so I wanted something that may stand up a little better (we'll see) that's also inexpensive in case they don't. I really like how rugged this license plate frame looks and I like that it's silicone for a variety of reasons. They also have drains on the bottom for any moisture that makes it's way inside the frame. I picked them up on Amazon and they came in a pack of 2 (here in CO we have both front and back plates). They were not that easy to get on actually, they are a very snug fit but they were not hard either, I was just worried about tearing the silicone. Small but nice touch.

551955

(Stock-full size spare & gear)

So my second weekend out with the car I ran over a nail in Great Sand Dunes National Park and unfortunately it was in the sidewall and the tire was toast. Had to drive the whole way home on the donut, not fun. So I wanted to have a full size spare tire and I wanted it to be the stock sport rim as well. Well @Sdcerreta was nice enough to sell me two of his and it does fit in the spare tire area if you take out the foam insert. Currently I have a first aid kit, side of the road kit, ratchet straps, the stock jack and a tire repair kit in there. I have a recovery strap and shackles coming next week that will go down here too.

551958

(STI Flex Tower Strut Brace)

So after picking up the wheels @Sdcerreta took me for a ride in his foz and convinced me to buy this STI Brace. I can say it has improved the handling of the vehicle. Good purchase.

551960

(Stock Wind Deflectors)

I originally was against getting the wind deflectors because I normally don't like them but again @Sdcerreta makin me spend more money. After picking up the wheels I saw that his foz had the wind deflectors and not only did I not dislike them...I kinda liked them. They also serve a very functional purpose, they allow me to have my windows cracked at night to vent while camping inside and keep anyone from seeing that the windows are cracked and also keep out rain. I have woken up to getting rained on before, so this is a big win me.

I also finally got the front side windows tinted to match the rear. I didn't want to get them darker because I enjoy looking out them when I'm hanging out back there during winter camping (I camp down into single digits).


551968

(Rally Armor Mud Flaps)

I wanted mud flaps and loved that the accent color on these was orange. 'Nough said.

551961

(Replacement Fuse Box Door)

551962

(Replacement Fuse Box Door)


I just randomly saw this on Amazon and decided to snag it. The stock fuse box door doesn't have this container space which is really useful to store a roofrack key, cards, coins, whatever.

551963

(Driver-side Tuxmat Floormat)

This is another thing that I decided to get after picking up those damn tires (cost me a lot more money than I paid for the the tires). I didn't know there were such a thing as luxury floormats but here are. Now the thing I love about these guys is the high walls. I have spilt beer in the back floor area when I was hanging out in the Camper"van"; luckily the stock mats caught most of it but there was room for improvement. These mats offer more coverage which I like and they look better than the stock mats. Should be easier to clean as well. Scroll down to see the rest.

551964

(Passenger-side Tuxmat Floormat)

551966

(Rear TuxMat Floormat)


I love that the rear is one solid piece. It goes up over the raised floor to the other side. Awesome product. You can see some plastic bed raisers which is what I use on that side to hold to plastic container up since it's a little shorter than the cooler.

Alright that's a wrap folks! I will continue to post the mods as they come. I have a tow hook on backorder so not sure when that will come and I want to get the LPA Big Bumper in the next month or so for a little more protection.

Stay tuned!
 

·
Registered
AU MY06 XS Luxury Auto
Joined
·
688 Posts
They also serve a very functional purpose, they allow me to have my windows cracked at night to vent while camping inside and keep anyone from seeing that the windows are cracked and also keep out rain.
Not a fan but excellent points.
 

·
Registered
2021 Subaru Forester sport
Joined
·
2 Posts
Camper"van" Bed:
Okay so this is my favorite part of the car and my favorite mod. It took a lot of planning, measuring, searching, and a lil bit of DIY. So I almost, allllmooost did not go with the forester for 1 reason and 1 reason alone and that is that the seats didn't fold completely flat. The whole point of the car was for me to sleep in it. I bought it because I was tired of not being able to go camping because I depended on friends for the ride, I bought it to sleep inside.

Anyways, I stuck with the forester since it was my favorite in every other aspect and I thought I could solve the no flat seats problem. I had originally looked into a couple systems to mitigate the issue. Theres a Canadian company that make a platform with telescoping tubes but I wasn't a fan of how the space beneath the platform was practically wasted so I decided against that. I've saw some videos on youtube of people that have made boxes with pullout shelving and I thought this would be the route I would take. I ultimately decided against the platform for several reasons: one, I was concerned about rattles while driving cause I'm a pretty novice builder and two, I was concerned that the platform plus mattress would reduce the headroom so much that I wouldn't be able to sit in the back and hang out. So my actual solution was to just ignore it and get a 4" mattress and so that's what I did! As long as I park the car with the nose 2-3 degrees downward then I don't even notice the seats not being perfectly flat at all.

I will redo this post at a later date to show the entire camp setup that I have but this will get the point across for now and was the second mod I did after the front skid plate.

View attachment 551949
(Bed, Sheet & Pillow)

So this is the bed I use! It's a 4" memory foam tri-fold mattress so this will fold out into a full length twin-size bed. I keep the mattress with the sheet on and pillow in my bed at all times cause you never know when you're going to need a nap and I live in a small 1 bedroom apartment with little storage to spare. I love how it fits in the cargo area perfectly and I still have room on top if I need the space. It's also super light so if I ever need to take it out for more space it's not a big deal to do so. The wood you see is what I currently use to level the car and/or get the booty in the air to get that angle I like.

View attachment 551950
(Board covered in indoor/outdoor carpet)

Okay so the grey thing on the floor sorta underneath the bed is my solution to the floor gap. This is just a piece of sturdy wood that I bought, cut, and wrapped with indoor/outdoor carpet. I wrapped it in the carpet to protect the car and other belongings from dings and scratches; the carpet secured the carpet with staples. I cut the wood to fit perfectly in the cargo space, I wanted it to be as long as possible while still fitting perfectly flat in the cargo area behind the seats.

View attachment 551951
(Board filling the floor gap)

Here you can see that this rests perfectly on the edge of the seat and the center console. Now usually I have a Yeti 35 Tundra cooler on the rear passenger side floor and a plastic container on the other side floor which also supports the board. I just took pics real quick this afternoon and didn't want to lug everything out there so that is why I said I will redo this post in the future when I have the proper setup. I meticulously measured coolers to find the perfect size cooler so it rests on the carseat tracks and that 2x4 and it's the exact height of the folded seats. Similarly on the other side I got a plastic container in which I keep all my gear and supplies in which fit perfectly on the other side achieving the same effect.

View attachment 551952
(Bed)

Just a quick close up shot of the bed pulled out. You can't tell in this pic but the pillow is directly under the sunroof, this makes for amazing stargazing at night.

View attachment 551953
(4" memory foam tri-fold twin mattress)

Just wanted to show the how the full bed fits back there. This is really comfortable and the mattress is soft enough where I don't feel the angle by the seats at all. Obviously when I am camping I take blankets with me and I actually keep a blanket back there all the time but I took out recently. Also, they do make a 6" thick mattresses which I may try out in the future but I was initially worried that even 2" would reduce too much headroom. I am a minimalist so I always try to get away with the smallest things.

This whole setup takes less than a minute to setup and take down. The longest part is waiting moving the front seat forward because the electronics are so slow. Overall I am really happy with it and happy it's a simple solution for when I don't feel like sleeping in the hammock or tent. I have slept back there with another person a few times and it's plenty of room! I pretty much just park anywhere that doesn't disallow no overnight parking including National Parks or down an off-road trail.

This is my Camper"van"
 

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Recovery Equipment:

Okay, so I got some recovery equipment in the mail and added it to my kit. I've had the Maxtrax recovery boards for awhile (mistakenly didn't bring them when I got stuck in mud) but I still do not have a way to mount them to my crossbars (also not installed yet). I have the mounting pins that Maxtrax makes but they don't fit the t-slot track of the Thule Evo Wingbar so then I tried a yakima mount but that also didn't fit. Was finally able to find a mount from Prinsu that I am hoping will work, looks like it should with some T-bolts I have.

After getting stuck in the mud I decided to follow through with a purchase that I originally decided against. I got an ARB Recovery Strap and some shackles because when I was stuck I did find a guy with a heavy duty truck but he didn't have any equipment to pull me out with. So I decided if I'm going to make risky decisions I should have the proper equipment to help get me out (decided against a winch though).

552221

(Maxtrax Recovery Boards, ARB Recovery Strap & Liberrway Shackles)

552222

(Storage of Recovery Strap & Shackles)


Very excited that the shackles fit perfectly in the foam inserts in a way that prevents them from moving around or falling out. Also was able to move the emergency kit to the back corner so that I could fit the recovery strap inside the tire. The cargo floor still lays perfectly flat without need force so I am very happy with this. Still have room for other items down here but not sure what to use this space for at the moment. Any Ideas?

Cheers!
 

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Moonshine to keep warm?
Haha, not a bad idea to have some emergency whiskey down there I guess though it would get hot during the summer. I will show you how I keep warm in a later post next time I go camping and stay inside the Foz. But in short I have 2 down camp blankets rated for 30F (I'll do a whole post on these later) and I have a cold weather sleeping bag rated for -13F on the extreme side of things.

I've camped in single digit weather a couple times both inside the car and out and I've always been pretty toasty.
 

·
Premium Member
2019 Forester Sport CVT
Joined
·
651 Posts
Looking good! I would love to see the recovery boards mounted on the bars when you are able to figure out the bracket situation.
 

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
@Sdcerreta I will make a post when I figure out a solution. I think prinsu makes the brackets to order because I ordered it last week but it's not set to ship for a few weeks. Hoping I get it around the end of the month.
 

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Gear Box:

Okay so I was cleaning up some gear and decided to get it all out and organized to do a post on my Gear Box. So this is everything that is "always" in my gear box. I will add things to it if I need to or remove things I know I wont need. The jetboil stove and jetboil flash get removed most often and sometimes I takeout the hammock and hammock straps, the rest stays all the time. I also take a backpack with hiking gear including trekking poles but that's not shown here. Anyways, see below:

552510

(my gear)

Alright, from the top down we got probably the coolest item: a collapsable multi-shovel. This thing is awesome! It's 100% solid metal and it all just screws together and you can make it as long or short as you want. It also all fits in that little black square bag below it. This is not just a shovel though, one edge of the shovel is an axe and the other is a saw. This tool is insanely versatile and I don't leave without it. A couple other things about this shovel is that the handle has a compass which you can unscrew and reveal a flint fire starter and the shovel has a bottle opener and different wrench heads. Lastly, you can put the spade in two different positions so it can be a traditional shovel or a hoe. I love this Shovel.

Beneath there I got some bear spray; I have a cooler in the car and sleep with the windows cracked. Wilderness Wipes; gotta stay somewhat clean. Microfiber camp towel and headlamp. Next is the Jetboil Flash and the Jetboil Stove. I also have some collapsable utensils also from Jetboil that I leave in the bag for the stove. Going down from there and back left we got the Kammok hammock and hammock straps. I love this brand and have many of their products. I'll do a writeup of my setup in another post. Next is a DCF tent that uses trekking poles instead of tent poles to setup. I take a shelter and a hammock in case I don't want to or can't sleep in the car. Next I got a bluetooth speaker and a charge cable so I can listen to music at night in the car. Bear locks for the cooler in case it's outside and a toothbrush. This is hard to see but the next items are on top of a board. I cut a piece of wood, sanded it, and stained it and I use this as a table on the bed in the car. It fits nicely in the size the plastic storage box. Next is an inflatable solar lantern that also acts as an external battery. Weather proof cards, sunscreen, a Kammok tarp, and a trashbag. Lastly and also really cool a set of nice vortex binoculars and a mount that mounts my phone to the binoculars. That was a lot.

552511

(Gear in the box)

Here is all of that gear in the box it goes in. As you can see there is plenty of room for other items. Often I'll throw dry food in here, a sleeping bag, clothes, whatever I need to bring. Peep the board in the back of the box. Takes up virtually no room and it provides a nice slim stable surface on the bed when hanging out.

552512

(Gear Box)

Alright so here you can see the box really isn't that big. It's dimensions are 22.5"x18.625"x13.5" which fits perfectly behind the driver seat and helps prop up the bed over the floor gap. I got the translucent box to make it easier to find the smaller items on the bottom of the box. Every specification is purposeful for what goes in the car. Yea, that's really it for this post. Let me know if you have any questions.
 

·
Registered
2021 Subaru Forester Sport
Joined
·
10 Posts
I like the folding memory foam mattress route. I'm still deciding on an air mattress for traveling space saving.
It's coming along nicely.
 

·
Registered
2020 Forester Sport
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I was originally going to go the air mattress route but I really don't like managing the comfort level throughout the night and also worried about holes with all the places I'll be going and the gear around it. So I decided to give up some space for the folding mattress. However, as you can see, I don't take a ton of stuff with me. Outside of what I've shown so far I only bring a small cooler, a duffle bag, and a sleeping bag or blanket or two. If someone travels with me add a second duffel. Even with two people the packed car still doesn't obstruct the view out any windows when driving.
 

·
Registered
2021 Subaru Forester Sport
Joined
·
10 Posts
I completely understand why you went the mattress route. When I travel it's with my girlfriend and she likes to pack as if she were moving so I have to save space where I can.
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top