Subaru Forester Owners Forum banner

1 - 20 of 170 Posts

2004 Forester XT 6MT
225 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey guys,

Figured I’d start a build journal in here so I can have some sort of written history of what’s going on with my Forester. I'm going to try to document each thing I do to the car.

Current pic:

  • 2005 STI 6 speed and R180 (with all subframes, knuckles, 5x114.3, etc) + MapDCCD
  • VF39 with welded wastegate
  • Tial 38mm EWG and GrimmSpeed uppipe (plumbed back into downpipe)
  • STI headers
  • HKS 3" downpipe
  • Stromung FXT catback
  • AEM cold air intake
  • GrimmSpeed TMIC and Y-Pipe
  • Perrin turbo inlet
  • FIC 1100cc injectors
  • FIC top feed conversion rails
  • IAG -6an fuel line kit
  • Aeromotive FPR
  • STI intake manifold (bling bling)
  • IAG 3mm phenolic spacers
  • TGV deletes
  • Walbro 255LPH
  • GFB Respons BOV
  • IAG Street AOS
  • STI oil pan
  • Killer B baffle and pickup
  • Oil cooler modified for header clearance
  • Koyorad with new Gates hoses
  • Gates timing belt
  • Cobb Accessport
  • Self-tuned with knowledge from MKTuned (MikeDrives1)
  • FEAL 441 max travel coilovers - 6k front / 4k rear
  • 2004 STI steering rack
  • Whiteline steering rack bushings - KSR202
  • Whiteline subframe lockout bolts - KSB750
  • Whiteline roll center adjustment - KCA313
  • Whiteline anti-lift kit - KCA362
  • Subframe spacer delete (spacers removed and swapped shifter, trans cradle, rear subframe, and outrigger to WRX/STI units)
  • STI lateral links
  • STI control arms (05-06 high caster variant) with flipped pin for additional caster
  • Whiteline 24mm adjustable front sway bar - BSF36XZ
  • Whiteline 22mm adjustable rear sway bar - BSR36Z
  • Whiteline sway bar stout mounts - KBR21-22
  • Whiteline adjustable end links (to make sway bar parallel and remove preload) - KLC139
  • Subtle Solutions fender braces
  • Whiteline rear strut tower brace - KSB586Q
  • STI Brembos
  • STI master cylinder
  • STI booster
  • Stoptech stainless steel lines
  • Stoptech street performance pads + DBA4000 rotors (daily)
  • Power Stop Track Day pads + Centric blanks (track)
  • Enkei PF01 - 17x9 +48 with 255/40R17 Falken Azenis RT615K+ (track setup)
  • STI goldies with 235/45R17 Michelon Pilot Sport A/S 3+
  • JDM bugeye hood scoop w/ custom splitter made from V7 STi splitter
  • Rear wiper delete
  • Rear wing
  • 06-08 color matched waist band
  • Importology lip + S204 lip
  • Rally Armor UR flaps
  • GrimmSpeed hood struts
  • Bath tub handle on hatch
  • JDM skirts and spats
  • Forester STI seats with USDM WRX driver-side rails to lower seat and add height adjust
  • STI pedals
  • Shift knob, lockout, and boot holder by WC Lathe Werks
  • 60mm gauge pod housing by BNA Solutions
  • Defi ADVANCE BF Gauges (Boost, Oil Pressure, Oil Temp)
  • 12" Sundown SA-12 @ 1200W with Hifonics BRZ1200.1D
  • Pioneer AVH-4100NEX
  • All weather floor mats and cargo mat
  • Custom fire extinguisher mount in front of passenger seat
Future Plans:
  • Killer B ELH with all needed oil system components

2004 Forester XT 6MT
225 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
First step was to address the cracked downpipe and broken A/C. The previous owner was slammed, and I guess he whacked the downpipe hard enough to crack the bellmouth. :rolleyes:

Fixing the A/C was as easy as replacing the line and putting heater hose over it where it contacts the intercooler. No more issues with that.

2004 Forester XT 6MT
225 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
The next project was a big one. Went to the shop I work at and mounted my 215/60R16 Blizzak WS80s on the stock wheels, 235/50R17 Potenza S-04s on my BBS, put in an STi steering rack with whiteline bushings, and pulled the blown coilovers and put in Swifts on the FXT struts as a temporary holdover until I figure out what I want to do with my suspension.

Assembling the struts

Struts assembled

Droop difference. Coilovers rear, struts front.

Final ride height

Final ride height with the BBS


2004 Forester XT 6MT
225 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Swapped out the VF39 that the PO put on for a buddy’s freshly rebuilt VF39. Mine had unacceptable shaft play (in and out and side to side, with marks on the housing from the wheel rubbing :eek:). Also threw in an EWG and STi headers, since the GT Spec headers wouldn’t mate with the EWG uppipe I got. :(

The old VF39

The old headers and uppipe, anyone interested in buying them?

Unfortunately, no pictures of the EWG or new turbo. But, when I went back to Mike for a tune, I was able to snag his old Cobb FXT specific exhaust. Score! Thanks Mike!

Also, hit a cool milestone


2004 Forester XT 6MT
225 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Put my new shift knob on. Made by WC Lathe Werks. The red top is a copolymer plastic that won't burn my hand during the summer and won't freeze during the winter, and the bottom and inside are heavy stainless steel to improve feel. It's an excellent shift knob and the craftsmanship is top notch.

The reason the boot isn't centered is because I had him make a 6mt shift knob instead of a 5mt shift knob, which would have a boot holder on the bottom. I plan to upgrade to the 6mt eventually, so I figured I'd have him make the knob like this so that I don't have to send it back to him for modification later on.


2004 Forester XT 6MT
225 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Realized that the previous owner never put the intake on properly. The rubber isolator was placed on the outside of the bolt, rather than on the inside between the intake and body. Not sure why he thought that was a good idea...



Also, started to mock up an intake heat shield that can seal to the engine bay and hood. Was inspired by the box that GatorXTi made in this thread, so I mocked it up with cardboard today. Going to get some aluminum and adhesive heat shields to make the final product.

Ignore the flap over the intake tube, I just didn't cut it off yet when I took this picture.

The piece of cardboard I chose is just shorter than the hood when fully closed. With a taller piece of aluminum and a rubber seal, the seal against the hood should be perfect.

1 - 20 of 170 Posts