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Registered
2006 XT
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671 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Post your setups here. Let others learn from your efforts.


Here are some guidelines:
*Post once and update your original post.
*Open a new thread or PM a person with any questions, keeps things clean
*Don't limit your post to suspension, this is the Motorsports Section


List things like, in no certain order:
Skill Level- Years in AX, EVO level, DE run group
Region and Organizing Body you race with
Car Class- DS, ESP, SM, STU and rallycross
Forester type/year/model- SG/SF
Swaybars f/r
Coilovers or springrates
Shocks/Struts
Endlinks/Lateral links/Trailing links
Brakes
Wheels/lugnuts
Tires and pressures
Engine Mods
Restraints, Harness bars, helmets, shoes, gloves...
Problems with anything
Driving impressions
...
 

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Registered
2006 XT
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671 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Here in North Texas we have two AX groups that I attend. SCCA and Rapid Equipe meet once a month ten times each. We have four venues that range from Pennington Field a parking lot for a local football field that is smooth concreate. Mineral Wells Airpark which is chunky asphalt but huge, like 1.6mile courses. And Texas Motor Speedway which we use the parking lot which is smooth treated asphalt (read sticky or slick) or the 1.5 oval inner road course which is smooth asphalt.

I've just recently resumed autocross after may years of raising little brats. In the 80's dad let me cut my teeth with his bmw 2002 tii on Portland Int. Raceway and later I raced his '73 Capri in SCCA GT1 regionally. I've autocrossed a STS honda, and STX 02' Sentra SpecV to second place in '04 ahead of several WRX's. I've attended EVO schools for 02, 03 and 04 and DE in the Advance group depending on the car I take out.

Currently I've not autocrossed my Forester and will update this soon

My setup currently is:

Stock Rotors and Calipers
Hawk HPS pad f/r
Goodrich SS brake lines f/r
SpeedBleeders f/r
Rota Action 17" X 7.5" +48 offset
225.17.45 Falken ST615s
Kartboy Shifter (legacy model)
Kartboy front and rear shifter bushings
Kartboy tranny bushings


not installed, but onhand:
Cobb 25mm rear swaybar
PolTech rear box endlinks

Ordered:
Strano 32mm front swaybar
front endlinks that come with the swaybar
Whiteline Steering rack bushings

Driving Impressions:
My car stock leans and pushes (understeers) like a pig. The comment of "slow in, fast out" sums it up. I get a herky-jerky symptom where the front and back trade grip coming out of a turn when loosing grip.

With the new rims/tires the geo-squeel is gone and the limits much better. Tracking and tramlining (sp) is much worse and you must keep hold of the steering wheel. I suspect that will only get worse with swaybars and coilovers.

Oversteer on power is there and predictable. Much worse with the Geo's. You need to set it up and get on the power. Not much "lift throttle oversteer" on the stock setup.

The brake upgrade leaves more to be desired. Initial bite is better but still vague.


Jeff STU27
 

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FXT Alumnus
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662 Posts
Started Auto Xing just this past April. I was introduced to Solo2 at a drive up AutoX in Lancaster CA in April 2005, hosted by a mainly Subaru Motorsports team. Based here in SoCal. www.teamblewracing.org I have since joined the team and have been progresively reading, learning, competing and modding my SG 2004 5MT PSM Forester 2.5 XT. I have attended EVO 1 this past Nov. I am currently competing in STU. Contemplating ESP for the rest of this season. Our regional solo2 community is based on www.solo2.com named CSCC, California Sports Car Club a sanctioned SCCA sub-club.
We mainly compete at Cal Speedway in Fontana, CA in a fairly large p-lot with ashpalt surface. The lot actually has some elevation to deal with. CSCC has a bunch of National Champs making any win something big.

Mods:
Rota Slipstreams, 17 x 8.5
Falken 615's 245-45-17
Cobb Hollow Front Sway bar, 25 MM, 23 solid equiv.
Cobb Adjustable Rear Sway bar mounts, OE 19 MM STI Sway Bar
Megan Racing Coil Overs, 8k/6k springs, 1-32 for clicks for damping
Whiteline Steering Rack Bushings
STI Trans. mount
Kartboy Short Shifter and front bushing
Whiteline Front Strut bar
Whiteline Quick release Rear Strut bar
Hawk HPS pads, F/R
ATE Blue Dot 4 Fluid
Goodridge SS Brake lines
OE STI Front seats in red Ultra Suede,
Schroth 4 point harness

Toe is set to 0 degrees for the street, 1/8 inch toe out for competitons
Front Camber -2.25 for street, -3.25 for competitons
0 Toe in rear, -1 or so Camber. I need to play with the camber in the rear.

Still stock and holding in there:
F/R Endlinks
Stock Rotors and Calipers

Recent driving impressions
I placed 12 out of 18 in STU and 64th out 235 overall. The front to rear balance feels quite controllable. I can initiate a turn agressively and get the rear to rotate for the tigher medium speed corners. This past event had a long left hand sweeper that went into a tighter left hand and then a medium right hander. Each transition felt as I described above. A little rear slip but then it caught nicely. I do need to do the mental string between the steering wheel and the gas. If you floor it too early on any tight corner, the front inside wheel will spin hard. Unwind and progressively lay into the gas for optimal traction. Must be nice to be an STI with limited slip up front and the DCCD gizmo.

After installing the Cobb rear adjustable sway bars, the effectiveness of the rear bar is way more predictable and stable. Before, with the stock mounts and the whiteline bar, my endlink was angled over to about 20 degrees from being horizontal. Thus, changing the effective sway bar rate badly. I'll post pics in another thread here. I am now competing in ESP against a bunh of RWD cars, a 68 Corvair took first by 1.4 seconds, I took 5 out of 7. Not bad, they are all on R comps and me on my 615's. I can get a podium I think with some more minor changes. Looking at swapping my 8K springs to the rear and replacing them with 7K springs. Resulting in 7/8 F/R. Next will be re-drilled Cusco front camber plates giving me caster adjustment too. Stay tuned for feedback from March's event.
 
A

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well, i started ax in 1990 in the chicagoland area. have raced all types of cars from FWD RWD and AWD turbo. my most fun car has to be the F XT though. why? its truly a sleeper of a car, or should i say wagon. All cars were run in stock class except for my first which was run in CSP. I remember the first time i had the F XT at the course, most people laughed. In my club there are a bunch of subies and most of them are STis. Believe it or not they snickered the most. Since that first race, they all now can't wait to see it out there. The local Viper Club joins us from time to time and are impressed also.

My Mods:

COBB C/B exhaust
Cusco front tower brace
225/55-16 Eagle F1 GS
4 point harness

Need to do rotors and pads next. any advice for type. remember, i want to stay in DS.


That's it. Wife won't let me do too much considering it's her daily driver.
 
S

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suspension set up...sti version 7 struts....sti version 7 rear springs...tein front springs...22mm adjustable rear sway bar....18x7.5 5zigen fno1-rc wheels...18's that weigh 17lbs....nitto 555 225/40r18
brakes...stainless steel brake lines...stop tech drilled rotors and stock pads..seems to work ok....(sg forster)
 

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112 Posts
My suspension mods:

STi suspension
STi rear swaybar

Wheels:
Gold BBSs from USDM STi

Rubber:
Bridgestone Potenza RE070

I compete in the ESP class here in SCCA Hawaii.
I've been Autocrossing since May '05
I usually come in around 4th or 5th in class w/a best of 3rd place.

I don't have any special gear other than my HJC helmet. No fancy gloves, suits, or shoes here.

Driving impressions:
This is more fun than drag racing ever was :p
My first month attempting Autocross, all I had was a Blitz SUS intake and they put me in ESP along w/the STis and WRXs and a few Mustangs. Needless to say, I got last place that month. The next week, I installed the USDM WRX STi suspension as well as the 17" Gold BBSs and Potenza RE070s. HUGE difference with body control as well as grip. I am still learning my car (as most people still are) and my goals are to beat those pesky race-rubber-equipped STis and WRXs while still remaining on street rubber. :D
 
A

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well since i run DS the wrx isn't a problem to beat. as of last year, i'm the front runner in our club meets for my class. I'm sure that will change for this year. i know others will change setup and i will keep mine from last year.
 

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Premium Member
2004 Forester XT MT
Joined
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1,433 Posts
MY04 FXT
Solo II ESP

Updates in GREEN (March 5, 2006)

Skill Level:
Weekend warrior. 2 years autox'ing.

Driving at the track:
+1 for slow in, fast out.
+1 for the mental string. Too much throttle on exit will spin the inside front tire.
*Slight/moderate oversteer with the rear sway at the stiffest setting.
*Shows lift-off oversteer. I have used this to force the car to rotate but is unpredictable.
*Very little body roll.
-Stock brakes suck and need improvement. This is where I can probably shave off time the easiest. ESP prohibits increasing the rotor size. Braking is much better with the wagon struts and STi springs. (ABS wants to kick in more with the coilovers for some reason.)

Suspension:
COBB 25mm Hollow Front Sway Bar
COBB Adj. Hollow Rear Sway Bar
Perrin Front/Rear End Links
STi Aluminum Lateral Links
STi Pink wagon specific/2004 Wagon struts
(was Helix DNA Coilovers 8kg/6kg 16 setpoint bound/rebound)
Rear Camber Bolts
Cusco Rear Strut Tower Brace

Tires/Wheels:
17x7.5 Rota Tarmac
225/45/17 Kumho Ecsta MX
41 psi cold

Alignment:
Zero Toe
-2.0 degrees front
-1.5 degrees rear

(was 1 degree neg camber front/rear)

I don't like to drive around with too much camber since the camber thrust is terrible on uneven roads. At the track I can dial in more front camber.

Sold the DNA's and now plan on using the Wagon setup for everything except snow trips. I have the JDM FSTi bits for that.

Has anyone tried the suggested alignment settings on the Whiteline page? Here The toe out at the rear seems like it would help at the track but make the car unstable on the freeway.

Problems:
-Pulls left during hard acceleration. Going to re-torque everything in the front suspension. Steering rack bushings are on the way. Might replace the the rear bushings on the control arms.
-Shockproof Heavyweight in the MT is too thick and causes problems until warm. Never grinds just doesn't like to go into gear when cold.
 

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Fear the Gorilla!
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181 Posts
Welp, my set-up is as follows. My resume is Former SCCA PRO SOLO Nat'l Champ in 1999 in Street Touring R. I captured the VA State Tile in G Stock in 2000 and the PA State Championship Runner up in 1999. After being married and being a dad for a few years I am now yearning to get a little friskey with the cones again and have set-up my FXT for SM. I'll run 17X8 wheels with Kumho or Hoosier R compounds once the weather shapes up.

HORSEPOWER
Ported Polished heat wrapped VF-39
Perrin Top Mount
Perrin Intercooler Hoses
APS 65 mm CAI custom painted WRblue
Ported Polished STI exhaust manifolds/crossover pipe
Daddy's 3 inch Mid Pipe
STI Axle Back
Ported Polished STI Up Pipe
STI ECU
STI Cobb AP PDX Pro Tuned
Perrin EBCS Solenoid (TXS DTEC to be installed soon)
Godspeed Oil Feed Line
Walbro 255 Fuel Pump
816 PDX Injectors
APS Air Splitter
MRT Sytle 04 STI 4 inch Hood Scoop
Perrin Catch Can
DRL delete

SUSPENSION
05 STI Billet lateral links and bushings
17X8 Rota Torques
235-45-17 Avon Tech M500
Addco 32 MM front sway/Cobb 25 MM rear adjustable sway (full stiff)
Hotchkis Comp. end links
32 way adjustable Megan Racing Coilovers with camber plates and pillow mounts rotated for max caster and camber
Comp. Alignment -2 neg camber front ( 0 toe)/-1.5 neg camber rear (0 toe) as much positive caster in the front as possible
AP600 Brake Fluid
STI Tranny Mount
STI Pitch Mount
REDLINE SHockProof in Tranny and Rear Diff.
 

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FXT Alumnus
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662 Posts
Nice setup GTP.
Even with Cobb AP stage 2 torque, I am having issues getting the front wheels to hook up coming out of corners. I get inside wheel spin if I am not careful in unwinding and squeezing the throttle progressively. Your modded SM FXT will be a handful this way. You might want to consider a front limited slip. Big dollars for installation unfortunately. If you go there, change out the clutch for a more agressive one too.
 

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Premium Member
2004 Forester XT MT
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1,433 Posts
GTP,
WOW you're running SM? Go for it! How much caster do actually have with the swapped camber plates? Are the ALK's legal for SM? If you end up installing a set, drop us a review.
 
A

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boy, i wish i hade the money like you guys. even if i did the other obstacle would be the wife. one day i'll hopefully catch up to you guys. famous last words.
 

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Premium Member
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2,132 Posts
Good info guys.. I'm looking to setup my car for a track day. Seems like you guys that are pretty serious about handling have the F/R sways. I just ordered up a set of cobb front and rear sways. I'll be taking off my sti rear sway. Car setup is as follows.

Power:
TD05H-16G
STi TMIC, STi Uppipe
Turbosmart BPV
Turbo XS Stealthback to STi Axleback

Tranmission:
Kartboy Short Shifter
Kartboy Front and Rear shifter Bushings
Legacy Shift Knob
Redline Fluids

Handling:
Stock Struts with Pink Forester STi Springs
STi Rear Swaybar
Perrin STi endlinks
Moboost endlink reinforcement
Whiteline Rear STB w/quick release

Braking:
Stock front rotors and calipers
H6 Rear upgrade
Carbotech Bobcat Pads
Goodridge SS Brake Lines
ATE Blue Fluid


I wonder how well my car will do at the track with this setup. I have to decide what tires to mount on my V7 STi wheels. I currently have Falken ZE512s which are all seasons on them. I need more aggressive rubber. I am going to pick up a front stb soon also.
 

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Premium Member
2004 Forester XT MT
Joined
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1,433 Posts
Zumble,
A few of your mods (turbo bits and larger rear brake rotors) put you in the Street Modified class at the Auto-X. You will be grouped with the big boys who run race rubber. Try an event anyway; you'll definitely learn a few things and might get hooked.

My SCCA region allows members to sponsor a guest. This is a great way to get your car into an event without becoming a member.

At the track (i.e. Mid-Ohio, Thunderhill, etc..) be careful with your brakes. I haven't had the pleasure of tracking my FXT but I know that the stock brakes are prone to fade. Not sure about the bobcats but anything is better than the stock pad.

Hold off buying the front strut tower bar. A good alignment will be a better way to spend your money. The one spec most of us agree on is zero toe. I think -1.0 degree of camber for both front and rear is a good conservative place to start.

Good luck!
 

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Premium Member
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2,132 Posts
Thanks for the fstb advice. I'll take it. =) Any reason to save some money and still be effective is great. I won't be autocrossing my car. I'll be taking it to Pocono Raceway to just run it on the track. =) I'm going to have a instructor with me I think but I want to make sure my car setup is proper so I can have the most fun possible. I'd like to surprise a few people on the track too.. ;)

Northwest Tan said:
Zumble,
A few of your mods (turbo bits and larger rear brake rotors) put you in the Street Modified class at the Auto-X. You will be grouped with the big boys who run race rubber. Try an event anyway; you'll definitely learn a few things and might get hooked.

My SCCA region allows members to sponsor a guest. This is a great way to get your car into an event without becoming a member.

At the track (i.e. Mid-Ohio, Thunderhill, etc..) be careful with your brakes. I haven't had the pleasure of tracking my FXT but I know that the stock brakes are prone to fade. Not sure about the bobcats but anything is better than the stock pad.

Hold off buying the front strut tower bar. A good alignment will be a better way to spend your money. The one spec most of us agree on is zero toe. I think -1.0 degree of camber for both front and rear is a good conservative place to start.

Good luck!
 

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Premium Member
2004 Forester XT MT
Joined
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1,433 Posts
Ploney,
How did the spring swap turn out? Aren't the front and rear springs on the Megans different lengths? I have heard of suby owners running a higher spring rate in the rear and getting positive results.

Do you have pics of the STi seats and the harnesses?
 

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FXT Alumnus
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662 Posts
Northwest Tan said:
Ploney,
How did the spring swap turn out? Aren't the front and rear springs on the Megans different lengths? I have heard of suby owners running a higher spring rate in the rear and getting positive results.

Do you have pics of the STi seats and the harnesses?
Swap is not done yet. Was not aware of the different lengths front to rear. That could change my plans a bit :oops:

Check the Interior forum thread for seat pictures. Search on "more grip" No pictures of the harness install, yet, stay tuned.
 

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FXT Alumnus
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662 Posts
Front and Rear Spring Rates...On Megan Racing CO's

I did my swap. I now have Front at 7K, rear at 8K.
I am getting very close to a podium in my class now.
Only .7 out of first with street tires versus R comps. Not bad.

See my other thread for actual race results.

I can control the rear very well now when I want to trail brake into a 90 degree corner.
I also went to the STI rear bar instead of the whiteline 24 mm.
This combination feels very tossable and predictable. Some of my teammates said I looked very good on course.
No pictures at this point though.:tempertantrum Running in the morning is bad for photos.
Next time.
 
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