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2003 Forrester S Turbo
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Well I have had my 52 plate S Turbo for 3 months and coming from a MG ZT-T i have been very pleasently surprised at how many options the Forester gives you, but I am now looking at maybe doing some work on the car, but I am a complete mechanic idiot. In fact I am embarrased about my complete lack of knowledge, so I apologise for anything stupid I now ask.

I guess my first question is about tyres. I have read a lot of the other posts, but I am afraid a lot of it is too technical for me.

I am looking at replacing the alloys. My MG had 18" tyres and they looked nice, and I am guessing from an aesthetic perspective there are some that look nicer than others, and there are other they may impact performance etc.

I use my Forrester for commuting (I am particularly hard hit by petrol atm!) and I am looking for some advice for some tyres which look aesthicaly nice, but are also functional and I guess the issue will be price, so I guess the question would be what sort of tyres to go for.

I live in Birmingham, so I don't know if there are any places people might suggest?

I guess the other question I have is about the ride. The Forester tends to wallow alot I find, and a colleague suggested an anti roll bar and maybe lowering the suspension to improve the ride.

However I am afraid I don't understand how that will necessarily make a difference.

Could any of you please enlighten me and once again apologies if these sound like stupid questions.
 

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99 UK S-turbo
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8,566 Posts
Handling, first mods are a stiffer rear ARB from a UK turbo/WRX/STi classic, then rear subframe bolts, the difference those two make is out of all recognition.

the rear ARB stiffens the rear suspension in roll, so you not only get a little less roll, but because you change the front rear balance it feels less nose 'heavy', the rear subfrmae bolts lcoate the rear subframe and remove the passive rear wheel steer, it makes the rear feel much more precise.

Wheels, well your old ZT alloys would have fitted!

Simon
 

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Registered
2001 S Turbo
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332 Posts
Well I have had my 52 plate S Turbo for 3 months and coming from a MG ZT-T i have been very pleasently surprised at how many options the Forester gives you, but I am now looking at maybe doing some work on the car, but I am a complete mechanic idiot. In fact I am embarrased about my complete lack of knowledge, so I apologise for anything stupid I now ask.

I guess my first question is about tyres. I have read a lot of the other posts, but I am afraid a lot of it is too technical for me.

I am looking at replacing the alloys. My MG had 18" tyres and they looked nice, and I am guessing from an aesthetic perspective there are some that look nicer than others, and there are other they may impact performance etc.

I use my forester for commuting (I am particularly hard hit by petrol atm!) and I am looking for some advice for some tyres which look aesthicaly nice, but are also functional and I guess the issue will be price, so I guess the question would be what sort of tyres to go for.

I live in Birmingham, so I don't know if there are any places people might suggest?

I guess the other question I have is about the ride. The Forester tends to wallow alot I find, and a colleague suggested an anti roll bar and maybe lowering the suspension to improve the ride.

However I am afraid I don't understand how that will necessarily make a difference.

Could any of you please enlighten me and once again apologies if these sound like stupid questions.
Don't worry about being a nooby with a lack of mechanical knowledge. I'm in the same boat. I've only just started doing bit and bobs to the car to help save on garage fee's.

You will find and receive plenty of help and advice on this forum.

ubdai
 

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Registered
2008 GRB 20th anniversary 6 MT
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6,570 Posts
Handling, first mods are a stiffer rear ARB from a UK turbo/WRX/STi classic, then rear subframe bolts, the difference those two make is out of all recognition.

the rear ARB stiffens the rear suspension in roll, so you not only get a little less roll, but because you change the front rear balance it feels less nose 'heavy', the rear subfrmae bolts lcoate the rear subframe and remove the passive rear wheel steer, it makes the rear feel much more precise.

Wheels, well your old ZT alloys would have fitted!

Simon
Simon, I read your and other people's comments about the rear subframe locking bolts in my other post, but isn't passive rear wheel steer a good thing? The ZX Volcane and my dad's Xantia 2.0 16V used to have this and in 90 degree turns you could feel it helped turning. Back in the early 90s the above 2 cars were the benchmark in handling among FWD cars.
The bolts may make the car feel more precise but do they also make it very tail happy and less progressive at the limit when oversteer occurs?
 

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99 UK S-turbo
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8,566 Posts
Its hard to describe the bolts effects, but forget comparisons to the FWD cars! The rear reacts faster to changes in load, they actually reduce the rear oversteer as the passive rear steer creates more, which is why it helps in an FWD only car, but it removes the 'slop' and slow reaction you get as standard (and may not realise until you fit them!)

Simon
 

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Registered
2006 2.0 XE Manual N/A
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1,240 Posts
Handling, first mods are a stiffer rear ARB from a UK turbo/WRX/STi classic, then rear subframe bolts, the difference those two make is out of all recognition.

Simon
Probably a silly question - does either of these mods affect the ride height? I wouldn't mind some better handling, but I do take my car offroad and don't want to lose any ground clearance.
 

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Registered
2008 GRB 20th anniversary 6 MT
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6,570 Posts
Probably a silly question - does either of these mods affect the ride height? I wouldn't mind some better handling, but I do take my car offroad and don't want to lose any ground clearance.
No, ride height is not affected.
 

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2003 Forrester S Turbo
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Well thank you for your initial advice. It's the first car that I have wanted to try and do some bits and bobs to, but I am a long way from doing anything serious as I have a young family. In many ways its funny being on the other side as I am an IT manager and so use to having to explain things to people.
 

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2006 2.0 XE Manual N/A
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1,240 Posts
I suppose the obvious question is that if the stiffer ARB gives such an improvement, why didn't Subaru specify it in the first place? :confused:
 

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Don, King of the parts diagram
MY11 WRX STi Sedan 6MT
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5,870 Posts
I suppose the obvious question is that if the stiffer ARB gives such an improvement, why didn't Subaru specify it in the first place? :confused:
A quote from Wikipedia............
It is common practice among automobile manufacturers to configure production cars deliberately to have a slight linear range understeer by default. If a car understeers slightly, it tends to be more stable (within the realms of a driver of average ability) if a violent change of direction occurs, improving safety.

By stiffening the rear ARB you reduce the understeer.
 
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