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Registered
98 Forester L
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136 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hey folks, let me start off with how I came to be a part of this Subaru family..

I received "Baby Ru" as a recent graduation present from my girlfriend's parents, some cool parents no doubt heh. She's a '98 SF and had 101k original miles, well kept up with maintenance, but a big oil leak..

Turns out it was a half-assed crank seal job at around 80k, I sold my then 07 VW Rabbit and got to work on this AWD beauty. Basically refreshing and sealing the motor with: new timing belt, crank seal, cam seals, plug seals and valve cover gasket. Then doing a seafoam engine treatment, fuel injector cleaner and filling with AMSOIL full synthetic oil, with their proprietary Ea oil filter.

My '07 VW Rabbit was a dark horse autocrosser (nearly caught GTI's and smoked STI's a few times) and I am hoping to turn Baby Ru into a granny wagon sleeper! :Banane17:

Current Mods:

Power
OEM Crank, cam, and plug seals
Duralast Timing Belt #95277
AMSOIL 10W30 Full Synth Engine Oil
AMSOIL Ea Oil Filter
ThermoTec Intake Wrap
K&N Drop-In Filter #33-2232
Magnaflow Muffler 2.5in in/out #11226
3A Racing Oval Tip

Handling
KYB GR2 Struts
15in steelies from Legacy
Dunlop Direzza DZ101 205/50-15 Tires
(nets ~4in drop on stock susp. + regear for accel)

Random Modz
Removed underhood foam
Removed busted up fogs
Underhood stickers


I plan on racing in mostly HS (stock) class, and that is what my mods are geared towards. Got lots more planned, and will update as I go.
 

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Registered
05 FXT 5MT
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255 Posts
Looks like fun. For HS, I would get yourself a bigass front bar to keep it from rolling over too much in the corners.....of course on street tires you will find the limits rather quickly anyway.

Have fun!
 

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Registered
98 Forester L
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136 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Looks like fun. For HS, I would get yourself a bigass front bar to keep it from rolling over too much in the corners.....of course on street tires you will find the limits rather quickly anyway.

Have fun!
Yahh she corners like a loose boat haha, at least that was with stock suspension and blown struts. Now feels MUCH better with KYB GR2's installed, funny to feel the suspension actually working lol

by bigass front bar, do you mean front strut tower bar? i believe that was not allowed under HS rules last I checked, or are you referring to something else?

I have some pretty crazy plans, but going to keep her somewhat tame for now due to lack of fundage..

and yup, tires are tiny but same width as stock 205, plus a bit gripier :icon_razz:
 

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Registered
2008 FSXT M/T
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4,170 Posts
he means front sway bar, the bigger the better. if you wanna get serious, id get some real tires on that thing stat! rcomps are the class norm, but a set of good street tires will do (dunlop z1s, bstone re11s, kook rs3s, yoke ad08s, kumho xs' etc).

what was done to the rabbit? looks pretty stock w/ a set of dunlops on it.
 

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05 FXT 5MT
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255 Posts
^^^ What he said.

Some folks will tell you that swaybars work to take traction away from the end they're installed on....which is true for the most part. For your stock springs and vehicle weight, the front bar will keep the front end from rolling over onto the outer edge of the front tire (as much) and therefore KEEP the tire closer to full contact. I suggest going right up to a 24-27mm bar. Bigger if you can get one.

Also, use any method you can to get the most negative camber from the front knuckles. I would support the rotor (while bolted on) with a floor jack while tightening the lower strut bolts....making sure I had every possible amount of camber I could get. Reset the toe to zero after setting the camber.

One downside you may notice is that as you accellerate off the corners, the back may squat a bit and try to lift the front inside tire. Wheel spin will let you know this is happening. We can help fix that too....so keep us posted on your progress.

I think you'll be surprised at how well the Foz will do once you get the autocross specific driver skills sharpened. :D Once that happens, we'll suggest some rear alignment setting to really make the car rotate at autocross speeds..... :D
 

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98 Forester L
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136 Posts
Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Unrelated accidents, but thanks for noticing guys :lol:

The Rabbit took a stop sign to the front at ~50mph, during a mis-calculated hill cornering manuever. physics won.. :icon_redface:

And baby Ru had the fender damage included, the bunny sticker just seemed fitting

I raced the Rabbit with baby wheels too, 15in steelies and 205/50 Z1 Star Specs, much stickier! Bone stock except for magnaflow catback. And managed to catch 08 GTI with very good driver (and way more GTI inherent advantages) on several occasions

My goal is to come close to GTI dude in baby Ru, and currently I'm ~5sec away so its gonna be a BIG stretch, but hey gotta reach for the sky, shoot for stars kinda thing. Last race was with blown and a bent struts plus bad camber and here's how we did:




Next race is tomorrow, possibly in rain too :woohoo:
 

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98 Forester L
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136 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Also, just read on class rules and sure enough front sway is legal, totally missed must've missed that before. That will be next upgrade for sure! Where do you guys recommend one to purchase from?

I wouldn't mind some FWD style understeer anyway, its what I'm used to :icon_razz:

Still getting the hang of AWD physics..

In meantime, next events I'll be rolling on:






And BONUS TWIN TURBO upgrade! :bling: :lol:

 

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Premium Member
2004 Forester 4EAT
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5,458 Posts
Just by looking at a few of the cars behind you, you must have some driving skills! The twin dents are just too funny.
 

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Registered
05 FXT 5MT
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255 Posts
Fish around on the Impreza sites for swaybar outlets and classifieds for some used bits.
Try Subaru Impreza GC8 & RS Forum: RS25.com and North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club

Understeer kills tires. You don't want that.....in autocross, you want some oversteer to make the car pivot, so you can use the AWD to power out of corners and make the straights "longer" by getting on the gas sooner.

Look ahead, look ahead, look ahead. Slow in= fast out. Fast in= slow out. If you can try to verbalize the course out loud, it will force your brain to work faster and you will be "anticipating" each element instead of "reacting" to them. You may notice that instead of hitting cones on the outside of a turn, you'll be hitting them on the INSIDE, which is a good thing. Very easy to back off just a touch and drive smoother.

Looking ahead far enough and getting your brain ahead of the course are the keys. It will immediately shift you from lower/mid pack to upper 1/3. I guarantee it......
 

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Smooshed FOTY 2011
2005 Lifted 2.5 XT 5-Speed MT Dual-Range
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5,813 Posts
Looking ahead far enough and getting your brain ahead of the course are the keys. It will immediately shift you from lower/mid pack to upper 1/3. I guarantee it......
Quoted for truth. I've taken numerous motorcycle racing classes at Laguna Seca, and this is something they continue to drill into you. It also works for mountain biking too. :biggrin:

(oh, and I finally added you to the Member Journal Directory, sorry it took a couple days.)

Also (and I don't know if this has been posted already), but look into the rear diff carrier bushings (race versions) as well as the rear subframe lockdown bolts. Even though I'm not running a rear sway bar, these two items greatly increased rear end feel and rigidity, as well as better turn in as it feels just overall more planted.
 

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Registered
98 Forester L
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136 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
well guys, my lucky break came sooner than expected..

with some wet circumstances on my side, i managed to edge out the competition into a 1st place Tire class finish! Beating out my rival GTI a lot sooner than expected :Banane29:

There was some heated competition as Baby Ru went head to head and back to back with GTI Thomas and a Mazdaspeed3 Alan, both guys were trying really hard for pole position. GTI Thomas was even running new rims which were 4-5lb lighter all around, unexpected upgrade, but at the end of the day, AWD, misty weather and a nice course layout all went in my favor.

Not only did we manage to win our class, but nailed Top Pax Time of the day! A first for me. The announcers threw out tons of jokes about my tiny wheels and body roll, but at the end of the day the numbers do the talking. I got a pretty big kick out of trouncing some very nice cars and had lotsa fun :biggrin:

Official Results:
https://axwaresystems.com/axorm/files/SASCA/e01-jan2011_fin.htm#T
https://axwaresystems.com/axorm/files/SASCA/e01-jan2011_pax.htm
https://axwaresystems.com/axorm/files/SASCA/e01-jan2011_sum.htm#T

Take a look at all other Tire guys I was competing against, and a few pics of Baby Ru in action:
SASCA - Blossom Athl Ctr


(check out results links for all times, final pax got cut off in pic)


 

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2006 V50 T5 6spd Manual
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2,519 Posts
This is pretty awesome. I always wanted to get more into AutoX with Ludwig, but found out rather quickly that a nearly 4000lb car just eats more tires than I can afford on pavement.

Dirt is another story. :biggrin:
 
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