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Premium Member
2006 Forester XT 5-Speed Manual
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380 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,
I currently have Whiteline Control Springs with stock struts on my daily driver 2006FXT. I absolutely hate this combo. Way too soft for my liking. The springs are softer than I'd like and the struts may be shot as after going over a bump I get some extra bounces.

I'd also like to lower my vehicle some more. Maybe an 1.5" in addition to the 1"+ drop from the Whitelines. My hope is that the drop alone would improve handling as it would lower my center of gravity.
I also want to go a bit stiffer.
My local performance shop is recommending BC Racing Coilovers. From what I have read here, I would want a custom spring rate. I've seen 7k/5k listed though I really don't know how these relate to my current springs or how stiff they will be. I am worried that I'd be going too stiff on the springs (or too soft).

Any thoughts? I know that comments here are completely subjective. Some years back I had a 2000 VW GTi VR6. I had H&R Sport springs with Bilstein HD shocks. I absolutely loved this setup. A few folks thought that the ride was a bit rough, but I thought it was perfect.


Thanks.
 

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Registered
2005 Base 2.5x foz
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896 Posts
Forester specific coil overs? Gives you adjustability and optional spring rates. Also if you want to get very low WRX/STI coil overs.
 

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Premium Member
2006 Forester XT 5-Speed Manual
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380 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Forester specific coil overs? Gives you adjustability and optional spring rates. Also if you want to get very low WRX/STI coil overs.
I actually don't know if I want Forester or WRX coilovers. I am not going to slam the car. I want about a 2.5" drop from stock.
 

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2008 FSXT M/T
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4,167 Posts
why do you or your shop think you need coilovers? whats wrong w/ a nice strut/spring combo? theyll ride better and accomplish the same thing w/out being height adjustable. bottom line is youll need to go w/ an impreza based suspension. wrx/sti takeoffs, tokico dspecs or konis + a decent spring = perfect.
 

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99 UK S-turbo
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8,566 Posts
Loqwering the CoG will not improve handling stop reading [email protected] car mag's! The car will roll more (for the same spring rate) as you lower the roll centre by more than the CoG anyway.

Lower a Foz by more than 2" and the front suspension geometry goes to pot, you end up going past the increasing -ve camber in roll back to decreasing, 2" is about the limit.

Why not just STi takeoffs? 2" drop from stock and spring rates about 50% stiffer and a LOT firmer damping.

Simon
 

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Premium Member
2006 Forester XT 5-Speed Manual
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380 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
why do you or your shop think you need coilovers? whats wrong w/ a nice strut/spring combo? theyll ride better and accomplish the same thing w/out being height adjustable. bottom line is youll need to go w/ an impreza based suspension. wrx/sti takeoffs, tokico dspecs or konis + a decent spring = perfect.
I don't know what is best. My shop recommended coilovers and I thought I'd start my comparison from there. I am a little intrigued by the coilovers ability to adjust the dampening.
Are there cons to going with a coilover vs. the strut/springs you mention?

Thanks.
 

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Premium Member
2006 Forester XT 5-Speed Manual
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380 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Loqwering the CoG will not improve handling stop reading [email protected] car mag's! The car will roll more (for the same spring rate) as you lower the roll centre by more than the CoG anyway.

Lower a Foz by more than 2" and the front suspension geometry goes to pot, you end up going past the increasing -ve camber in roll back to decreasing, 2" is about the limit.

Why not just STi takeoffs? 2" drop from stock and spring rates about 50% stiffer and a LOT firmer damping.

Simon
Simon,
I didn't read about lowering the CoG improving handling. I simply deduced that on my own. I would have to believe that all things being equal, the same car lowered 2" would handle better than the same car at stock height.

I don't know enough about STi takeoffs. Are we referring to using a stock used suspension setup from an STi? If so, I'd prefer to go new. The main reason being that I don't want to deal with finding the right parts, hoping the struts are still good etc...

I want to just drop my car off at a shop and then pick it up with little to no involvement from me. (though with the coilovers, the shop wants me there to tell them how high/low I want it)


What pros/cons are there to using STi takeoffs vs. the coilovers?

My main goals are to lower the car about 2-2.5" and significantly improve handling. I also want to lower the front a little more than the rear. My big fear is making the car too stiff.


Thanks.
 

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Registered
2007 Forester 2.5XT
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48 Posts
I want to just drop my car off at a shop and then pick it up with little to no involvement from me. (though with the coilovers, the shop wants me there to tell them how high/low I want it)


What pros/cons are there to using STi takeoffs vs. the coilovers?

My main goals are to lower the car about 2-2.5" and significantly improve handling. I also want to lower the front a little more than the rear. My big fear is making the car too stiff.
I'm looking for the exact same solution/ experience. I just sent an email over to IAG (in Westminster, MD) asking for some of their suggestions. I had them do my exhaust and custom tune (basically a Stage2 ) last year and I'm hoping for the same hassle free in and out experience with them for my suspension setup.

I'll let you know what I hear back from them.
 

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2004 2.5xt
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122 Posts
This is just my opinion and actually am not sure if it will work out 100% the way its going in my mind but. I too am looking for the perfect lowering option for myself and thus far have come up with Tein GT wagons for the fact that they are Forester Specific and the spring rates aren't too shabby either.

Also, at first I was all about slamming my foz, until I went offroad...1 time.... Then I debated keeping the stock suspension and getting a lower setup and just swapping when I wanted. Instead I'm leaning towards the Tein's as from what I've read, they can lower the car to the spot I want (2" below stock) and supposedly it has the ability of putting the car to either stock height or even 1" higher. This can be done by just turning the body of the coilover "while still on the car" and raising it without effecting spring rate. Also, I don't plan on doing anything crazy off road, But here in the NW, hiking is what I do an sometimes you just need a little extra height to get to where you're going.

Turning the coilover body while its still on the car to raise it seems to work fine (car is on stands of course) without any problems, I have a pair of Tein Flex's on my Talon and have done this before, not sure if it is 100% suggested but its whats worked for me.


*note* I realize that raising it and dropping it that far of a distance will effect camber and alignment. My use would mainly be the lowered stance and would only raise it once in awhile when needed.
 

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Registered
2004 Forester XT '06 STi 6MT
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707 Posts
I am a little intrigued by the coilovers ability to adjust the dampening.
what's so intriguing about it? same as any single adjustable shock.

all these "32 way" adjustable coilover dampers are a crock imo. you can turn the adjusters 10 clicks sometimes before you feel any difference in the damper. how is that really "32 way" adjustability lol?
 

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Premium Member
2008 Forester XT Sports
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1,705 Posts
Simon,
I didn't read about lowering the CoG improving handling. I simply deduced that on my own. I would have to believe that all things being equal, the same car lowered 2" would handle better than the same car at stock height.

I don't know enough about STi takeoffs. Are we referring to using a stock used suspension setup from an STi? If so, I'd prefer to go new. The main reason being that I don't want to deal with finding the right parts, hoping the struts are still good etc...

I want to just drop my car off at a shop and then pick it up with little to no involvement from me. (though with the coilovers, the shop wants me there to tell them how high/low I want it)


What pros/cons are there to using STi takeoffs vs. the coilovers?

My main goals are to lower the car about 2-2.5" and significantly improve handling. I also want to lower the front a little more than the rear. My big fear is making the car too stiff.


Thanks.
Take a look at my thread, I am doing a similar setup with 04 STI take-offs which you can easily get for a pretty low price! Read through the thread because I also go over the Roll Center calculations and what really happens when you lower your Forester. (I will give you a hint, its counter intuitive)

http://www.subaruforester.org/vbulletin/f70/sti-suspension-near-stock-ride-height-71034/
 

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Premium Member
2006 Forester XT 5-Speed Manual
Joined
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380 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I'm looking for the exact same solution/ experience. I just sent an email over to IAG (in Westminster, MD) asking for some of their suggestions. I had them do my exhaust and custom tune (basically a Stage2 ) last year and I'm hoping for the same hassle free in and out experience with them for my suspension setup.

I'll let you know what I hear back from them.
thedaego,
Your post is too funny.....why is it funny? It is funny because IAG is the shop I am taking my car to (small world). They recommended the BC Coilovers but they didn't really point me to spring rates or whether I should get Forester or WRX co's. They said I can special order a spring rate, but I am not well versed in this topic. So when I see people recommending 7k/5k spring rates for street use I don't know really know what means to me.

Thanks.
 

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Registered
99 UK S-turbo
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8,566 Posts
The car rolls based on the distance between the roll centre (the imaginary point about which it rolls based on suspension geometry) and the CoG, lowering a car 2" lowers the CoG about 2" and the roll cnetre (on a foz) by about 3", increasing the roll moment and therefore roll.

If you don't want to use used bits, get new Impreza strutsa nd add STi springs, but if you want it to handle don't go more than 2" lower than stock.

Simon
 

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Premium Member
2006 Forester XT 5-Speed Manual
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380 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
OK....after doing a little more reading, I have more questions. If I go with struts/springs, it seems like the spring to get is the 2005+ sti prodrive red. I found a thread where a poster went with the above springs along with KYB AGX struts (wrx). His car looks to have the perfect ride height for what I am looking to get. I would hope that it would improve my handling.
If I go with these springs, which struts should I look at (Tokico, Koni etc...)? I'd prefer something adjustable. Should I also be looking at STi struts rather than wrx struts?
I used to have Bilstein HD shocks on a previous car and I loved them.
My main goal is to reduce roll. In addition when I take a turn now it feels like my front inside wheel is about to lift off of the pavement. This doesn't give me a good feeling.


Thanks for the help.
 

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Premium Member
2006 Forester XT 5-Speed Manual
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380 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
If your main goal is to reduce roll, upgrade your sway bars! If you haven't done this yet, this is where you need to start.
I have an STi RSB.
I have to address my struts asap since they are pretty much done. Since I need to swap them, this seemed like a good chance to work on addressing the shortcomings of my existing springs.

Thanks.
 

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13 Forester XT 4EAT
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4,188 Posts
I understand if your struts are shot and need to be replaced. But if you are are really looking to reduce reduce body roll, go stiffer than the STi bar and address the front sway bar as well.

If you're the kind of person that isn't going to mess with coilover settings, I wouldn't get them. If you want a 2" drop, get some wrx struts and wagon springs and call it a day. I just installed these on someones car and they looked great, rode well and got the drop you are looking for.
 

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Registered
2007 Forester 2.5XT
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48 Posts
thedaego,
Your post is too funny.....why is it funny? It is funny because IAG is the shop I am taking my car to (small world). They recommended the BC Coilovers but they didn't really point me to spring rates or whether I should get Forester or WRX co's. They said I can special order a spring rate, but I am not well versed in this topic. So when I see people recommending 7k/5k spring rates for street use I don't know really know what means to me.

Thanks.
hhmm. Small world, indeed. I haven't had a chance to really chat with them about the suspension setup yet. I don' know what the difference in rates means either. The numbers are just numbers to me as well. I know it's not necessarily rational but the coilover solution seems more comprehensive to me.

I mean, isn't a strut/spring combo basically the same thing except that with a coilover setup the struts/springs were designed to work together? (I know I could very well be way off base with that question, so if someone could straighten me out i'd appreciate it. :biggrin:)
 
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