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Premium Member
2012 camry se 6AT
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Discussion Starter #1
I had this sitting in my garage for over a week and finally got around to take some pictures. I bought the springs from Gary at Mann Engineering.

http://www.mann-engineering.com/

Info on Swift:

http://www.swiftsprings.com/

Aren't the springs purdy? These are '02-'03 WRX Wagon specific springs that I will be installing with WRX sedan specific KYB GR2s. The sedan struts will give the car a wider stance than the wagon struts. I should have the new springs on the car by saturday.

Application and Specs:

Part number: 4F003

MY02-03 WRX Wagon (GGA)
Drop - F:-30mm, R:-15mm
Rate - F:3.3kg/mm, R:2.9kg/mm

194/166 lbs/in Front/Rear

Springs rates in lbs/in:

Stock SG Forester = 157/118
JDM SG Forester STi = 194/166
SPT Forester Pinks = 194/166 (same part number as JDM SG F-STi, same springs - different name)

02-03 Stock WRX Sedan MT = 163/119
02-03 Stock WRX Sedan AT = 163/132
02-03 Stock WRX Wagon MT = 163/132
02-03 Stock WRX Wagon AT = 163/144
02-03 Swift WRX Wagon = 185/162

04 Stock USDM Impreza STi = 224/194
04 Swift USDM Impreza STi = 258/224

This helps as a useful guide in checking calculation from kg/mm to lbs/in...
http://structsource.com/analysis/types/metric.htm

Ride height drop with Swift springs is 1.2" front and .06" rear from '02-'03 WRX ride height. Drop for '03-'05 Forester ride height (using WRX struts) will be approximately 3.5" front and 3" rear.









 

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04 XT
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733 Posts
That should make for a nice combo with the increased spring rate. I've found GR2s to be overdamped on stock springs in a couple of other applications.
 

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2012 camry se 6AT
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2,809 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Eclipse said:
That should make for a nice combo with the increased spring rate. I've GR2s to be overdamped on stock springs in a couple of other applications.
The GR2s are definitely overdampened for the Impreza application. I have the GR2s with WRX wagon springs right now and I get the bounce effect.

Front springs comparison:




Rear springs comparison:



Swift uses a material called H5S.TW and manufactures by a process called cold winding coiling technology to create the most superior spring. Lighter in weight than other springs on the market, Sport Mach springs have fewer coils yet have the most consistent linear spring rate versus their competitors. Durability is superior to other silicone-chrome brands, and do not sag or fatigue over time.


http://www.swiftsprings.com/


Make note that using the Impreza specific suspension route pretty much takes away the versatility out of your Forester due to shorter strut travel and lower ride height. But the improve handling is worth it!
 

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Premium Member
2012 camry se 6AT
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2,809 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
So I finally got around to install the new springs onto my car.

Struts: KYB GR2s - WRX Sedan application

Part #: 334304, 334305, 334306, 334307

Strut mounts/tophats and bump stops:
02-03 WRX

Modification: Swift instructions: Trim one hump on front bump stop (appox. .75"); no trimming was done to rear bump stop.


WRX sedan struts have wider track on the fronts. Using wagon struts, with a narrower track, may cause camber issues.



Front combo:


Rear combo:



To backtrack a bit, I previously had the GR2s matched to stock WRX wagon springs. That setup was pretty good but I encounter two problems. One being the GR2s were overdampened for the springs and gave the car the bounce effect. Not my thing. Second problem was the low spring rate for the rear cause severe rear end sagging under load. Not my thing either. I had better luck under load with JDM F-STi springs and stock Forester struts. However, I didn't like the "boat" feeling with the that setup for spirited driving.

Thus enter Swift Sport Mach springs. From my measurement, I got about 1/2" inch drop in the rear and 1" drop in the front from my previous WRX set up. I am sitting approximately 3.5" in the front and 3" in the rear lower than stock Forester ride height with the Swift springs and sedan WRX GR2s.

The most noticeable difference with this new setup is the reduction in body roll and how well the steering response is now.:D That front end plow has been reduced significantly. The car handles like it is on rails on the streets (no auto-x testing yet ;)). Busting a fast right turn is that much more enjoyable. The ride is relatively smooth on the highway as the wrx setup but the car is a lot more steady.

The down side to this is more rattles in the car over wider imperfections on the road. I'll probably crush my kidneys if I ran through a pothole on the public roads. However, that was a given with the setup with higher springs rate and stiffer dampers. The drop is just a tad more than I would like but I can live with it. I also have to buy a new jack lift since the one I have no longer fit under the front end of the car. :mad: I also feel the tires are the limiting factor to this setup. I currently run 225/50/17 Falken 512s. A dedicated summer tire will definitely be in the works. Damn, this modding thing is going to cost me a lot more than I anticipated!

All in all, I would recommend this setup to anyone running WRX takeoffs right now that want a much better handling upgrade. If ground clearance and smooth ride is your thing then this is not the suspension for you.
 

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2006 RX8
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423 Posts
tre36- Nice looking set-up, I have heard good things about the swift springs, and it looks like a decent combo with the GR2's.

To Northwest Tans question, the lower bolt-hole configuration on the struts is slightly different on the WRX wagon to compensate for the narrower track as opposed to the sedans wide track. As far as camber adjustment goes, as long as you aren't dropping too much the front adjusters can compensate enough. Even with sedan struts though, the rear camber is not adjustable, and if the Fxt is anything like the WRX, a set of Ingalls camber bolts is a decent investment to get some level of adjustability and correct for too much negative camber.

Just my .02

Jeff
 

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'09 STI
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4,129 Posts
tre36 said:
I also have to buy a new jack lift since the one I have no longer fit under the front end of the car. :mad:
You might try putting the jack in from behind the front wheels. I put the rear up first and this gives me just enough room to slide the floor jack in that way. It's kind of a ***** to jack because the lever hits the undercarriage but it only takes a minute or so.

Congratulations on finding the happy medium you sought. I hit it on the first try but I wasn't ever concerned with ground clearance or cushy ride so it was easier. I agree that the stock struts didn't feel like the dampening was up to snuff and that much travel is always going to be hard to control on the road.
 

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2012 camry se 6AT
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2,809 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
NadhaDamdyke, thanks for the tip. I will have to try it. This is my third try on suspension to get what I want and most likely the last.

EDIT: new pics added

Notice the even drop F/R :) Wheels/Tires are 225/50/17s. I will be moving to 225/45/17s soon.













 

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2012 camry se 6AT
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2,809 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Update:

Corrected spring rates and updated photos by request...

After 3 months, the springs and struts are still performing really well. I am quite please. Thanks to a math geek I updated the springs rates.

No severe sagging with cargo loaded compared to stock WRX Wagon Springs.
 

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WOW....Perfect drop IMO. Great job.

So just to be clear on a couple of issues.... the Swift springs are approx. the same rate as FSTi pinks, only lower, correct?

Also, using WRX sedan struts is preferable to wagon struts because they fit better, or provide a better stance, or what? Wasn't really clear on that point.

Looks wonderful.
 

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2004 Forester XT MT
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Looking good. Nice shot with Seattle and the top of Safeco Field in the background. :cool:

Also, using WRX sedan struts is preferable to wagon struts because they fit better, or provide a better stance, or what? Wasn't really clear on that point.
The main difference between sedan and wagon struts is the amount of camber you will get. Wagons have a narrower track which results in more negative camber when those struts are installed on a sedan or forester.

Answer to the million dollar question...
"What kind of camber can you get out of the wagon suspension?":

Front Camber: -0.8 to -2.0 (with the stock eccentric bolt)
Rear Camber: -0.7 to -3.0 (with the H&R camber bolts)
So for most of us who lower the car for handling, the camber range is pretty good. Tire wear will be good, even with camber at -1.0 at all four corners. (It's usually the toe setting that eats up tires.)
^^^from my thread on the wagon strut install: http://www.subaruforester.org/vbulletin/forums/showthread.php?t=1608
 

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2012 camry se 6AT
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2,809 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
davidk20 said:
So just to be clear on a couple of issues.... the Swift springs are approx. the same rate as FSTi pinks, only lower, correct?

Also, using WRX sedan struts is preferable to wagon struts because they fit better, or provide a better stance, or what? Wasn't really clear on that point.

Looks wonderful.
Correct. WRX Wagon Swifts with WRX Sedan Struts will give you apprx 3" lowering. A little more in the front actually to even out the drop and give a more agressive look. JDM F-STi pinks with SG OEM Struts will lower the Forester one inch all around.

Regarding wagon or sedan struts...what Northwest Tan said.
 
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