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Maybe a final update for audio.... Infinity 3way set installed; 90csx and the 20mx mid-range and the 62ix 6.5 coax in the rear doors... VERY happy with the sound, the whole system really works well on the RF flex45 amp. The knappa 6*9 don't have the same low bass output the fosgate has but it's punchy and solid, and the sub handles the rest anyway. The mid-range set did require a little modding to fit with the included plate, the tweeter is custom in the grill, only took a couple minutes though.. the rear speakers were also were a little tight so I took some of the material off of the door panel grille with my Dremel but a pair of aviation cutters would do just as well. I just hit where the tweeter gets close. My RTA app on the phone looks pretty flat. Now what's next lol :). The most time consuming part of the process was feeding the two wires from the door to the kick panel.. I ended up mounting the crossovers up over the kick panels.

** It pays to have a nice tight seal on your mounting hardware to get the most bass output from all the woofers. Some thin gasket or sealer on the back side, close up all holes on the adapter, some foam on the front side, really make it look as similar to the stock or fosgate as you can.

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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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385 Posts
Discussion Starter #283
I have a new modification to share. I am replacing the Forester Sport headlights with Forester Touring headlights that have the very cool looking LED Daylight Running Lights (DRL).

I have been working on this one for awile and I still have to do the install. But, the wiring specs and details on how these lights operate with some of the limitations can be found on Post #57.

Once I get the other headlight I will proceed with the hard-wire modification and share some photos. I am excited to upgrade the headlights!
 

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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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385 Posts
Discussion Starter #284 (Edited)
Some of you may have been following the comments from another thread: 2019 Boomerang DRLs – Where/How to get? Several people including myself were disappointed that the Forester Sport trim did not offer the LED DRL option. The Sport in the US uses the Lo Beam headlight at ½ power for Daytime Running Lights (DRL). So, if you want to see and learn more, please check on that thread. https://www.subaruforester.org/threads/2019-boomerang-drl’s-where-how-to-get.793779/page-3



I have not completed a major mod in quite some time. So, I have two to post. This is the first one. I have purchased and successfully installed a set of Steering Responsive Headlights (SRH) from the Forester Limited/Touring model. My goal was to get those cool looking LED DRLs (many people call these the boomerang lights). I bought the headlights on ebay for about $250 each. I also had to buy some 10 pin connectors, since the Sport car harness uses an 8 pin connector.



In summary from the other post, you cannot activate the SRH system. This requires a complicated series of electronics and relays that are not available on the Forester Sport. Therefore, the headlights will not turn, but they are centered when powered down, so the beams are aiming properly. These lights use a 10 pin connector and have many more wires. Some of these wires run the SRH motor, so they are inactive. I will also point out that the Sport uses bulbs of the blinker and side marker lights. The Touring uses an LED side marker and a bulb for the blinker.

So that should set the background for this mod. If you need more details, see the other post.



I have a good-news update to share. The install went great. The connectors I purchased from findpigtails worked perfectly. These are OEM and had the numbers on the pin holes. This made the job easy. Very high quality. They are expensive, so if you need to buy a set, ask for a discount from Ryan, he was helping me out.

Everything works as expected. I will mention that testing the light conditions is difficult. The DRL will only come on when the car is in drive and in sunlight. I got smart today and thought I would use the parking brake instead of wheel chocks to keep the car from moving forward, but the DRL does not work when the parking brake is activated. I wasted about an hour trying to troubleshoot this. I had everything wired up and taped. I was very close to stripping everything back down to start over, then I thought I would just take a break and go out for lunch and shopping the ski expo. During the drive I pulled behind a shiny blue truck and saw the DRL operating perfectly in the reflection. Woohoo!



The other trick I did today that worked out really well, is that I did not solder the wires to the new connectors. Last week I bought a cheap connector pin release tool. So, instead of using solder and shrink wrap, I pulled the pins from the old 8 pin connector, removed the black pins/lead wires from the new connector and put old wires into the correct locations. I had a couple switch-a-roos too, where I moved a wire to a new location to match up with the new 10 pin connector.



The only wire I cut is the Violet DRL (-) which was not used. The other wire mod I made was to use a waterproof posi-tap to join two wires. I reused the plastic sheathing where I could and wrapped everything up in black cloth tape. Looks really great!

Here are a few other mods and procedures:

  • Both Forester Touring headlights had broken tabs. 4 tabs mount to car with 10mm bolt. There is a plastic trim piece (did not come with headlight so I reused mine) which is held in place by 2 10mm bolts. I will detail these repairs when I show the photos. I really wanted to express that you should do your best to buy headlights with all the tabs. If I were to do it again, I would not buy a headlight with a broken grill-side lower tab or a broken retainer for the plastic trim. The plastic trim helps align the headlight. I had a hard time getting this right, but it worked. The top center tab and high-fender fabrication went pretty easily. You can use some PC7 or similar pipe fixing putty and some stiff plastic. I used carbon fiber sheet that I had left over from another project.
  • In order to replace the headlights, you need to remove the front bumper cover. I have done it before and this time it went pretty fast and smooth. In fact, this is the only part of the car that did not have Dynamat treatment, so I was excited to deaden this plastic panel. Wow, every panel has been treated now.
Here is an updated and confirmed table of the wiring configuration.



All wiring changes were made for the car harness only to match the connectors on the headlight. No changes were made to the headlight connectors or that wiring. The wiring colors and pin locations are identical for both headlights. I will describe details for every wire on the car side harness. Any wire NOT used on the headlight harness will not be mentioned. Those wires have no function in this modification.

Schematic for the Left Hand (LH) headlight. *Identifies a wire that was relocated from the 6-pin connector to the 10-pin connector.

Old Connector
B477 – 8 pin
Female
Pin Location​
Color​
Function​
Notes​
New Connector
B477 – 10 pin
Female
Pin Location​
1​
Green​
Lo Beam (+)​
Released pin and relocated to DRL (+)​
9​
2​
Light Blue​
Hi Beam (+)​
No changes​
2​
3​
Black​
Ground​
No changes​
3​
5​
Violet​
DRL (-)​
Did not Use​
NA​
NA​
NA​
Side Marker/LED running Light​
Posi-tap into *Blue wire, Pin 1​
8​


Old Connector
B287 – 6 pin
Female
Pin Location​
Color​
Function​
Notes​
Old Connector
B487 – 6 pin
Female
Pin Location​
1​
Yellow​
Turn Signal (+)​
No Changes​
1​
2​
Blue​
Running Light (+)​
Released pin and relocated to 10-pin connector​
1*​
6​
Black​
Ground​
Released pin and relocated​
2​






Schematic for Right Hand (RH) headlight.

Old Connector
B487 – 8 pin
Female
Pin Location​
Color​
Function​
Notes​
New Connector
B487 – 10 pin
Female
Pin Location​
1​
Red​
Lo Beam (+)​
Released pin and relocated to DRL (+)​
9​
2​
Light Blue​
Hi Beam (+)​
No changes​
2​
3​
Black​
Ground​
No changes​
3​
5​
Violet​
DRL (-)​
Did not Use​
NA​
NA​
NA​
Side Marker/LED running Light​
Posi-tap into *Blue wire, Pin 1​
8​


Old Connector
B287 – 6 pin
Female
Pin Location​
Color​
Function​
Notes​
Old Connector
B487 – 6 pin
Female
Pin Location​
1​
Pink​
Turn Signal (+)​
No Changes​
1​
2​
Blue​
Running Light (+)​
Released pin and relocated to 10-pin connector​
1*​
6​
Black​
Ground​
Released pin and relocated​
2​






So now on to the photos with details.

Headlight Diagram 1 – These are my notes for the Sport lights
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Headlight Diagram 2 – These are my notes for the Touring lights
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Headlight Touring Install-1 Both lights were purchased used from wrecked cars (I imagine) on ebay. I paid about $250 each. You can see a black trim piece on the left headlight. Neither headlight I bought came with these. So, I took them off my Sport lights. These pieces mount with two 10mm bolts and help get the headlight properly mounted and pointed. The lights have 4 mounting bolts each. The other two 10mm bolts are for this alignment trim piece.
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Headlight Touring Install-2 The first thing I did today as I started this project (I did a full wiring test a week ago with one light. It worked so I bought the second light) was to fabricate replacement tab for the broken ones. There is a broken tab here.
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Headlight Touring Install-3.0 This is what it should look like. So, I had a broken tab for the lower grill mount and the tab that holds the plastic alignment trim piece. These are really hard to fabricate. Try to buy a headlight with these tabs intact. Top center and Top side tab is easy to fabricate.
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Headlight Touring Install-3.1 Top tab fabrication done with PC7 putty and carbon fiber scrap.
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Headlight Touring Install-3.2 Top side tab is also easy to make. Same technique. The PC7 sets up fast.
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Headlight Touring Install-3.4 The other headlight top center tab
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Headlight Touring Install-3.5 This is the fabrication for the alignment trim piece. That piece has an extension like the broken tab, so my plan was to just get the trim piece mounted and then I can use some spacers and a bolt to just hold the lower grill section in place. When I was done, this was perfect. There is no bounce. Super tight light.
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Headlight Touring Install-3.6 Here is the RH headlight mounted. It had 2 broken tabs. Top center and the lower grill tab.
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More to come.
 

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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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385 Posts
Discussion Starter #285 (Edited)
Headlight Touring Install-3.7 Here is the LH headlight mounted. It also had 2 broken tabs. Top center and top side. These were easy.



Headlight Touring Install-3.51 Once I got the fabrication done, I pulled apart the car. It looks scary, but this is quite easy. I removed the air intake system. Then I pulled off the plastic bumper cover. Then I removed the headlights. The cover must some off to remove the headlight. I have done it before, so all this work took me about 20 minutes. It also made it easy to rebuild the wiring harnesses with all that stuff out of the way.
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Headlight Touring Install-3.52 With the bumper cover off, I had the chance to dampen it.
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Headlight Touring Install-3.53 Dynamat deadener installed. Really works great on plastic.
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Headlight Touring Install-4 Now I started the wiring. I decided to relocate pins in the connectors instead of cutting, soldering and shrink wrapped. Not only did this save time, but it looks better and there are no unnecessary wire extensions. All the wiring I did was at the car side female harness. I touched nothing on the headlight male connector side. This is the LH 6 pin connector. I needed to relocate the blue wire to the 10 pin connector and put the black wire in that hole. I then took an extra rubber plug and sealed up that empty #6 pin hole.
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Headlight Touring Install-5 Before you can release a pin, you must remove the retainer clip.
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Headlight Touring Install-6 Now use tool to release the pin and pull on the wire. There are Youtube videos showing you the tools and how to do it. You really don’t need a fancy tool for this type of pin. A jewelers screwdriver or common T-pin should work.
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Headlight Touring Install-7 Blue pin is out. I also placed the black wire into this pin location #2.
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Headlight Touring Install-8 I repeated the same step for the RH side 6-pin connector. These connects fit the Touring headlights, so I did not have to replace them. I just had to rearrange the wires so it talked to the Touring headlight.
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One more post to complete the series.
 

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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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385 Posts
Discussion Starter #286 (Edited)
Headlight Touring Install-3.9 So, I replaced the Sport 8-pin connector with the 10 pin connector. I relocated all the pins per wiring diagram. Then I plugged in both lights to make sure everything worked as expected. In this photo you can see the 10-pin connector comes with 10” of black wire in every pin location. I removed the ones I did not need and move the other wires into this connector. In this photo you can also see the 8-pin connector dangling with the Violet wire. I later cut this wire since it is not used and took out the 8-pin connector.
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Headlight Touring Install-10.5 I trimmed up the excess black wires not being used. I replaced the wire loom as much as I could and taped everything nicely with 3M cloth electrician tape. In this photo you can also see the posi-tap. This connects the pin 8 wire to the pin 1 wire. These two wires share the same running light signal. See wiring diagram for details.
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Headlight Touring Install-9 I did the same thing to the RH side.
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Headlight Touring Install-10 Connected to headlight.
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Headlight Touring Install-11 Very dirty car. Here is what it looks like all put together with the lights off. When shopping for the headlights you will notice that the lower trim models have a reflector boomerang. The Touring uses the LED boomerang. Once you see a few photos, you will be able to quickly recognize the LED DRLs.
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Headlight Touring Install-12 Don’t get discouraged when testing. There are a lot of conditions that must take place for the LED DRL to operate. If you follow my wiring schematic without modification it will work. The real way to test it is to go for a drive in full sunlight. This photo shows my reflection off the back of this truck. It was the first time I got to see that they were properly working. Woohoo!
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Headlight Touring Install-13 Once I got home I hopped out of the car on an incline in drive and snapped some photos. It looks totally awesome. The 2021 Sport should come with these !!!
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Headlight Touring Install-14 this is my new avatar photo. I love it!
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That is all for now.
 

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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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385 Posts
Discussion Starter #287
The second project I completed recently was to install a center channel speaker. I have been wanting to do this for awhile. When I installed the aftermarket system, the input signal to the front dash speakers ran to the Starlink module first. So, when cutting those wires, I would get the red Starlink light. This means that when calling the operator, I may not be able to hear them.



I reconnected the Starlink module and installed 4 ohm resistors to trick the system into thinking a speaker was there. While the light turned green, it would occasionally go red and I still had no actual speaker.



So, this mod was to install a single center channel speaker wired old-school Left (+) and Right (–). It would be mounted in the center dash hole (which is actually there in the Forester. I was then going to use the Ascent center channel speaker grill.



Well, this did not work out the way I planned. However, in the end I do have a working center channel speaker. The green Starlink light is consistently on and I have a speaker to listen to the Starlink operator. The Ascent grill is slightly too long and did not work. So, I installed the regular cover and this resulted in a 4dB decrease in volume. I actually tried using the CMass speakers and while I did not measure the dB it is much softer than the HK speakers. I opted to use the HK speakers for this application since they have a higher overall sensitivity which is better when using the regular panel cover with no grill.



Overall sound quality is amazing. The center channel enhances the center staging while test tones for Left/Center/Right were dead on. I would say that the high frequency sounds are a little diminished with the regular panel is in place, but not as bad as I thought. Furthermore, the vocals are great and this is what I was hoping to gain.



The best part is that this option ended up being stealth, while restoring the Starlink green light and function of this system when having to call the operator. It enhances the center staging and is completely hidden, thereby fooling the unexpected listener into thinking there is a center channel and then not finding one. But, there really is.



Here are the photo details.

Center Channel Install-1.0 Here are the two grills side by side. Up close they look like a perfect match, but the Ascent grill is about 3/8” longer. The cutouts to access the screws were different in the front section. I used a dremel to grind these out.
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Center Channel Install-1.3 I did not buy the fupper front panel for the Ascent. Later, I tried to buy it and it is difficult to find the part. According to one of the service people, he said this pieces is part of the telematics. I tried to connect my piece as seen in this photo and the angle is different. It also has a slight curve and the Ascent grill piece is straight. So, it just does not fit. It was worth a try.
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Center Channel Install-2 Some people have asked me for a photo of the Head Unit back. So here it is. I had to remove the radio to access all the wiring and to run wires from the dash speaker locations.
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Center Channel Install-4 Photo of the Ascent grill plate. Man, it looks cool and I wish it worked. You can see the front edge is forward of the dashboard.
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Center Channel Install-6 Photo of the regular panel without the speaker grill. You can see it is flush with the dashboard.
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Center Channel Install-8 Photo of the cutout in the dash for a center speaker. This fits a 3.5” speaker. I tried old-school wiring and it did not turn off the Starlink red light. So, I had to install both the left and right speakers. There is plenty of room for both speakers here. I used a little foam on top of the Head Unit then placed the lower (right) speaker here. The upper speaker (left) was mounted in the center speaker cutout.
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Center Channel Install-9 Here you can see the right speaker underneath the upper speaker.
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Center Channel Install-13 Here you can see that the Ascent panel sticks out too far and the vents are not flush with the dashboard.
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Center Channel Install-14 After extensive testing with Left speaker on top, then Right speaker on top, polarity changes, panel on, panel off, other speakers on / off etc. I used left/center/right test tracks and listening in drivers and passengers positions. I used a simple dB meter for these measurements and a pink noise track. I finally ended up with this configuration, Left speaker on top wired with reverse polartity (+) speaker wire to (-) speaker terminal and (-) speaker wire to (+) speaker terminal. The right speaker was placed underneath with normal polarity hookups.
The second project I completed recently was to install a center channel speaker. I have been wanting to do this for awhile. When I installed the aftermarket system, the input signal to the front dash speakers ran to the Starlink module first. So, when cutting those wires, I would get the red Starlink light. This means that when calling the operator, I may not be able to hear them.
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Center Channel Install-15 Both speakers were secured to prevent movement and rattles. Simple 3M 2-sided tape was used instead of screws for holding the top speaker. The foam actually seals on the panel. These speakers are louder than the CMass speakers and worked best for this application.
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More to come.
 

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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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385 Posts
Discussion Starter #288
Center Channel Install-16 Here you can see the Green Starlink light is back on.
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Center Channel Install-18 Here is a measurement of 74.5dB with pink noise track, panel off. All other speakers muted.
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Center Channel Install-21 Here is a measurement of 69.1dB with pink noise track, panel on. All other speakers muted. There is a drop of 5.4dB. When I have all the speakers unmuted and playing pink noise the measurement is 81.5 without panel and 80.1 with panel in place. This difference illustrates how insignificant the center channel speaker volume is when all speakers are playing.
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The reality is that the center channel speaker with the regular panel enhances the center staging without creating a very big appearance. When I play the Left/Center/Right channel test track all the voices come from those locations. You do not hear the Left Channel playing in the center location. In fact, there is no hint of this at all. I simply could not place the Left channel in any position other than Left. Same goes with the right channel test track.

This modification really turned out great. I really need to get this vehicle entered into a competition. I just can’t seem to find one near me that I am able to attend.
 

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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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114 Posts
I love following your mods! I have been meaning to start researching installing the front camera the Foresters in other markets get. From what I understand there is a plugin the front somewhere near the headlight that the camera plugs into. I noticed you have some wiring diagrams which I have not been able to find yet, did you happen to come across anything or see anything about the front cam?
 

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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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385 Posts
Discussion Starter #291
I love following your mods! I have been meaning to start researching installing the front camera the Foresters in other markets get. From what I understand there is a plugin the front somewhere near the headlight that the camera plugs into. I noticed you have some wiring diagrams which I have not been able to find yet, did you happen to come across anything or see anything about the front cam?
Thanks Deeve.

I found nothing on the front caIn fact, it was hard to find info on the headlights, since these are designed to be replacement parts. Basically, if a lamp burns out, you replace the entire assembly. Since this is how they treat it, they don't show the headlight harness wiring. Weird.
 

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You should try one of the infinity 20mx mid-range speakers a shot... Not sure if the bandpass or just high pass would be better but man those speakers are impressive.
 

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For me, for my setup they were perfect and better. Btw I was testing the kicker key amplifier and WOW is all I can say... The Rockford is now a lower heat sink. Hahaha... Incredible how good it works and how loud it gets. The time alignment and dsp and auto tune software is unbelievably good. When on, it sounds like I have a center channel, lol sounds Soo good and with all music that I throw at it. Super impressed. I have my infinity 3-way on the front and the 6.5 coax on the rear channel. Sub has its own. This technology will be the only type of amp I buy moving forward,, I hope they release a bigger version but even if they don't I'm actually feel done. It's small and gets warm but have not had any issues.. my 3way kappa at low impedance is pushing it hard I'm sure.
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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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Discussion Starter #298
Another mod project this past weekend. I applied a Carbon Ceramic coating to the car. I do a lot of driving, 16K so far and 11 months old. Most of the driving is freeway, so the car has picked up some road debris.


I decided to add some paint protection. I really wish I did this when I first bought the car. It came out great, and while is is a lot of work, it was fun and I picked up some knowledge and tools along the way that can be used in the future.

I do not actually have a lot of photos of the process. So, I just plan to describe the project.

I looked at a few different companies and decided to go with Chemical Guys (CGs). It is a high-end brand. What I love most about this choice is that they offer all the products and have videos and application guides for everything. I feel like I can actually detail my own cars now, rather than pay $200 every couple years to get a mediocre detail. You should also know that Summit Racing sells the full line of the products for the same price. CGs will often have a 20% off sale, but they did not have the Carbon C9 Flex coating in stock when I was buying the other stuff.

I found myself investing almost as much time into reading and learning about the process as I did on the project itself.

I want to start with a desricption of what a ceramic coatings is then I will lead into the project steps and discuss the products I used and what I liked or did not like about them.


So, ceramic coatings (or carbon ceramic) protect your vehicle paint similar to protective film. However, it can be done at home, vs film which is expensive to wrap a whole car and needs special cutting to apply. Ceramic coating gives brilliant shine and repels mud, dirt and water extrememly well. There are many products on the market and most advertise 1-3 years of protection. Good wax gives you about 3 of months protection. Applying a ceramic coating requires a lot of prep work. You need to apply the coating to a properly prepared paint surface. Any inperfections, swirls, bug debris, etc will be permanently sealed under the coating if you do not get the paint properly prepared.

To learn more, the best place to start is here: https://www.chemicalguys.com/blogarticle?cid=blog-article-detailing-flow-chart
There is a complex chart followed by a list of steps to follow. It took me awhile to figure this out, but basically you can pick and choose what you want to add from this list. Everything can be layered. So, you can do everything on the list as long as you remain in that order, or you can choose the options best for your application.

Here is the process I chose and some of the products and tools I chose to buy.

Tools:
Torq R1 Foam blaster - $40. This uses standard garden hose. I thought this product sucked. It sprayed soapy water on the car, but not a true foam. I am returning this.

Karcher K1800 Pressure Washer - $100 on sale at Sam's Club. I was trying to avoid a pressure washer, but wow, this thing works great and I no longer have to spend $5 at the local car wash for this step. Attaching a foam cannon to this will work much better than garden hose option or the built in soap container which comes on the Karcher.

Ryobi Foam Cannon - $40 from Home Depot. I needed this in a pinch and it works much better than the R1 with garden hose. The biggest problem with this is the container size. It is small and you have to race around the car before it runs out of soap.

MATCC Foam Cannon - $20 from ebay. This is on order. I have not used it yet, but tons of reviews that compare it to the high end Chemical Guys Foam Cannon for $80.

TorqX Random Orbital Dual Action (DA) polisher kit. $160. This is a real beast and I love it. I have used many cheap polishers in teh past including those monster 10" pads. I hated all of them and was not convinced I needed a polisher to do this job, but wow was this easy and fun to use. It has a dial to change speeds and the CG. All the CGs products have recommended speeds for each product. Again, very cool and easy to follow. Everything is spread onto the paint with speed 1, then higher speeds are used to buff into the paint. Each product has a different recommended speed. Very easy to do and follow.

Dirt Trap - Buy 2. $10 each and get different colors. I use black for dirty and green for soap. This traps dirt and prevent you from putting dirt on the car and scratching your paint. I used regular 5 gallon buckets that I had already.

Chenille Microfiber Wash Mit - $10. Green. Same color as my soap water dirt trap, so I know this goies into the soap bucket with matching color trap.

Fatty Super Drying Towel - $10. I only bought 1 but recommend 2. It gets wet fast. I like to use two towels to dry the Forester. I bought 2 similar but different style towels from Autzone and none perform as well as the Fatty.

Misc other microfiber towels for product application and buffing.


Detailing Process:

Step 1 - WASH: The car was very dirty and I had a lot of bug debris and pine tree sap. So, I did two washes (Deep Clean and then Decontamination) with a foam cannon to apply the soap and a two bucket method wash to scrub the car. I used the same soap in the bucket that I had in the cannon.

Wash 1 Deep Clean was done with CGs, Bug and Tar wash. Later I bought CGs Citrus Wash & Gloss and I like this one better. I used it on my wife’s car.

Wash 2 Decontamination was with CGs Clean Slate. This strips all the wax, sealants and oils that are on the paint. Removing this is necessary to get to the bare paint level before moving forward. This step is also the most important. All the bugs and saps must come off before applying the next steps, otherwise you will seal them under the coating. To be honest, I had some bugs and sap that I could not remove entirely. I did not want to risk using a razor blade as I have done that before and no matter how careful you are, you will cut the paint.



Step 2 - CLAY BAR – There is an optional chemical decontamination that can be done after the clay bar treatment. I opted not to do this. It may have worked better on the sap spots, but I only had two and they were not that bad. This step was the most satisfying part of the process. I used the original yellow clay. You only need to use a small piece at a time and if you drop it (I dropped 3 times) you have to throw it out. The clay will remove any grit on the surface. You have to spray with CGs Clay Luber to wet the paint, then just rub in straight lines. When you run your hand on the paint it will be super smooth. You also get an amazing reflection after this step. This was the most fun.



Step 3 – PAINT CORRECTION – I considered my paint to be in moderate condition. I had a couple long but superficial scratches from driving offroad around bushes. I also had some swirls caused by local car washes, which are not gentile. I used V36 compound and Orange Hex cutting pad on speed 1 to spread and 5 to cut. I treated the scratches and hood with V32 / orange pad. In the future I bought CGs VSS and plan to use this instead of the V32 for deep scratch and swirl. I was able to remove swirls, but did not fully remove the two long scratches.



Step 4 – SURFACE CLENSER – I used CG’s Wipe Out. This removes any oils from using the polishing compounds. Spray on and wipe off. Very fast step.



Step 5 – PROTECTIVE COATING – This is where it gets fun. The pre-steps are pretty much required for every project. Moving forward you have options. You do not need all the steps that follow the coating. I used CGs Carbon Flex C9 coating. This is an easy step. Wipe on with applicator then go back and buff it all off. I was surprised on how little of this product gets used. I can probably do two more cars with this bottle of carbon ceramic coating. The paint looks a little shiner after application and feels really hard after an hour. Before moving forward you need to let the coating cure for 24 hours. I left the car in the garage and waited the full 24 hour period. Great excuse to drive the wife’s turbo-charged car.



Step 6 – WAX – I chose to skip the glaze and sealant options. I am actually planning on going back to add Black Light glaze. A glaze adds more protection and covers imperfections in the paint. It is supposed to make dark colors shine and sparkle. It sounds like a perfect match for that Dark Blue Pearl paint, which I have on the Sport. This glaze is supposed to make metallic flake sparkle like nothing else. However, I did not have it at the time, so I went straight to one coat or Butter Wet Wax. I applied this with the DA polisher with black pad (should use red pad, but I did not have it at the time) on speed 1 to spread and 3 to buff. Wipe off and I was done.



Step 7 – QUICK DETAILIER – I do not plan to use these sprays. Instead my plan is to wash the car as required with foam cannon and 2 bucket wash method with the Carbon C9 Wash. This will keep coatings and wax in place and provide some additional protection for those layers.



Overall this project took two days. About 6 hours per day. It was much more fun then I thought it would be. I really enjoyed using the foam blaster, clay bar process and all the polishing steps with this super-cool DA Torq polisher.
 

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2019 Forester Sport
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I do not have the patience for the prep work, but I really want this protective coating on my car...
 
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