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Premium Member
2012 2.5X 4EAT
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908 Posts
Discussion Starter #41
Tail Light Tint

I had some room in the budget for tinting my tail lights. Slowly, the chrome is disappearing from this car.

I had it done at a shop in town that has done window tinting on 3 cars for me, including my Forester. They do a great job and stand by their work. Really nice guys and very professional.

For head and tail lights, they had two shades of vinyl. I went with the lighter shade, which I think is about equivalent to a 50% window tint. It might be a bit darker. I was considering Lamin-X covers, but I figured I would do a terrible job applying it and I'd end up having it done by these guys anyway, so I saved myself the trouble. I'm very pleased with how it turned out.

Before:



After:





 

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Premium Member
2012 2.5X 4EAT
Joined
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908 Posts
Discussion Starter #43
Thanks! I'm pretty happy with it, too. It was a little tricky for me, as it's hard to spend money on something purely aesthetic and subtle when there are plenty of other things I'd like to do like get a new set of King Springs or a set of All-Terrain tires.

But, I had some money in the budget to spare, so I did it and I'm glad I did.
 

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Registered
2012 Forester Auto
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4 Posts
This look great Schmee!!! Where did you get the tints done? I am trying to find some good shop around central coast that can help me get the window tints.
 

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Premium Member
2012 2.5X 4EAT
Joined
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908 Posts
Discussion Starter #47
Thank you very much! I'm pretty happy with how it's coming along, but I should probably take some better pictures to show it off a little better.

I had my front windows and tail lights done at Car Stereo Guys in Santa Barbara. If you're closer to Monterey, I know Monterey Peninsula Tint does a great job. I've heard there's a really good place up in the east bay area, but I forget what it's called. I'll try to find the name for you.
 

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Premium Member
2011 XT Touring 4EAT
Joined
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12,193 Posts
Hey, hey, hey......whats going on in here?

Its like when a pizza shop has the little slivers of gourmet pizza out for free.....i dont want a taste...i want the whole d#mn thing!!!

Pretty cool man!
 

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Premium Member
2012 2.5X 4EAT
Joined
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908 Posts
Discussion Starter #50 (Edited)
King Spring Install

I was planning on doing a write-up for a spring install, but the Factory Service Manual really covers almost everything. If the PDFs are all numbered the same, you want PDFS 411, 414, and 419 (Front Strut, Rear Suspension General, and Rear Shock Absorber).

King Spring part numbers KSFS-55 for the front, KSRS-56 for the rear.

Tools:
  • Spring Compressor - ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY
  • Torque Wrench
  • 12mm, 14mm, 17mm, 19mm Sockets, open-ended, box wrenches, etc
  • Jack and stands
  • SPECIAL SUBARU TOOL (More info below)
Everything was going pretty smooth, until I realized that Subaru has a special tool for removing the springs. I wish I would've taken a picture of the bolt, but essentially, you need a socket that you can hold, but put an allen key through it like this:


17mm socket in the front, 14mm socket in the back. Other than that, everything went together pretty simple, just using the service manual.

Here is suspension before:
Front:


Rear:


Skidplate lowest point (7.5" ish):


After:
Front:


Rear:


Skidplate (8.0" ish):






So about 0.5" lift all around for standard height springs. I'm pretty happy with that.

Alignment after:


Everything is much tighter and feels a lot better. Turns are much more fun. It didn't take out all the body roll, but it's a big improvement. I haven't taken them offroad yet, but that's coming. All-in-all, I'm very happy with the investment.
 

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Premium Member
2012 2.5X 4EAT
Joined
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908 Posts
Discussion Starter #51
Gear

My latest haul:


  • Smittybilt 3/4" D-Ring
  • Daystar Shackle washers
  • Jumper cables (old ones were left in the rain and corroded)
  • Smittybuilt 3" x 30' Recovery strap
I already had the Daystar D-Ring isolator from a 2-pack I bought when I got my first D-Ring. 2nd tow hook should be arriving today from Jackie at Annapolis.
 

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Premium Member
2012 2.5X 4EAT
Joined
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908 Posts
Discussion Starter #54
Hmm, I hadn't heard about the struts being at full extension, but I guess it wasn't that way for me. I'm really happy with the springs, but now I really want new tires. I'll be trading my 17" wheels for 16"s, but that won't be until Thanksgiving. Then I'm planning on getting a set of 215/70/16 Grabber AT2s. Here comes a lesson in patience...
 

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Registered
2015 XT premium The one without the fun pedal
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837 Posts
Lucky bugger, you beat me to the King spring upgrade. Thanks for the input on your new springs, being your evil twin from the North- I will eventually be rocking a set of these. Have you upgraded your rear sway bar yet? I'm thinking the Kings plus the sti 19mm rear sway bar together will make a huge difference in handling. Congrats man.:Banane35:
 

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Premium Member
2012 2.5X 4EAT
Joined
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908 Posts
Discussion Starter #59 (Edited)
Hahaha! Thanks, Jhoo. We found a little extra money in the "Fun" budgets, so I decided it was time to get the springs. Very glad I did.

I've thought about getting an STi rear sway, but I need to do some more research. I know a lot of people replace just the rear bar, but I feel like the front should be replaced as well, right? Otherwise it could throw the designed suspension/steering geometry off. I don't know. Maybe Just throwing the 19mm bar on the back is totally fine. I need to read some more.

Edit: I read this article on Sway bars, and it was informative: http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/articles/lean-less/
 

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2013 Forester XT 4EAT
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981 Posts
Most production cars are set up to understeer at the limit because 90% of people don't know what to do when their car starts to slide. Going to a larger rear bar only will make your handling more neutral.

This is in theory and not real world experience.

My real world involves removing the rear bar and looking like an *** when it took even more speed to get the rear end to hang out in my favorite hairpin on my daily drive.
 
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