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2012 Forester XT Auto
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158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I finally got around to writing down the part numbers on my FXT's suspension when I went to install my 3/8" saggy spacers. After googling they come up as factory STi parts. I'd like to upgrade the swaybars front and rear to eliminate some body lean it still gets when going around turns. Whats the best set up that will work with the STi springs and struts ? I was looking at the whiteline stuff but not sure which is the best route. Any suggestions would be great.
 

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2004 Forester XT 6MT DCCD (helical)
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I suggest Perrin 25mm front and 22mm rear.

My fiance has these installed on her 2011 WRX.

Settings are: Front on soft ; rear on stiff.

Ride is very comfortable yet way better than stock.
I've autocrossed her car and driven lots everywhere else including hard mountain runs.

Balance is very nice with a whisper of controllable lift-throttle rear-steer

For your Forester application, it will be even more comfortable given your slightly increased weight and higher center of gravity. What wheels tires are you running?

No, you won't NEED upgraded endlinks, but I would consider them.
 

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2004 Forester XT 6MT DCCD (helical)
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^^ Mann Engineering suggests that for a lowered Foz or an Impreza?

I'm very surprised if thats for a Foz. Although their balance/staggered idea is similar to mine with bigger bar in front (given the different rear suspension design to the SG/GD).

25f / 22r on an Impreza does not feel like overkill at all on the street, never intrusive as too stiff.
A heavier/taller Forester would benefit more from a little larger overall.

Tire size/height will effect these things a good amount as well.
 

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2012 Forester XT Auto
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158 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I suggest Perrin 25mm front and 22mm rear.

My fiance has these installed on her 2011 WRX.

Settings are: Front on soft ; rear on stiff.

Ride is very comfortable yet way better than stock.
I've autocrossed her car and driven lots everywhere else including hard mountain runs.

Balance is very nice with a whisper of controllable lift-throttle rear-steer

For your Forester application, it will be even more comfortable given your slightly increased weight and higher center of gravity. What wheels tires are you running?

No, you won't NEED upgraded endlinks, but I would consider them.

Well my Foz is my daily driver. So right now its in wintermode on 04 bbs wheels and will have new blizzaks in about a week. Once summer gets here I plan on hunting down a set of 18x9.5 Enkei NT03+M with the +40 offset. Tires will probably be Bridgestone Potenza RE11's in either a 245 or 255. I was leaning to the whiteline 24mm front and 22mm rear...
 

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2016 Forester XT Touring
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943 Posts
The whiteline 20mm adjust, in addition to the braces, now comes with the locking collars. When I picked mine up from AZP, I saw and asked them and they said they started to include them bc they worked better than previous method(assume it was just nubs on bars before).
 

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2004 Forester XT 6MT DCCD (helical)
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Well my Foz is my daily driver. So right now its in wintermode on 04 bbs wheels and will have new blizzaks in about a week. Once summer gets here I plan on hunting down a set of 18x9.5 Enkei NT03+M with the +40 offset. Tires will probably be Bridgestone Potenza RE11's in either a 245 or 255. I was leaning to the whiteline 24mm front and 22mm rear...
Well that sounds like the start of an awesome setup! I think you will love that and it should perform awesome. Id love to see that. If ur profile location is correct in LI id love to check it out in person, im relatively close.


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2012 Forester XT Auto
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well that sounds like the start of an awesome setup! I think you will love that and it should perform awesome. Id love to see that. If ur profile location is correct in LI id love to check it out in person, im relatively close.


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It is correct so we can probably make that happen. Just a matter of making time. I want it to get to spring already so I can get the bumper cover and grille repainted. Im out on the Nassau/Suffolk border.
 

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2013 Forester XT 4EAT
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374 Posts
^^ Mann Engineering suggests that for a lowered Foz or an Impreza?

I'm very surprised if thats for a Foz. Although their balance/staggered idea is similar to mine with bigger bar in front (given the different rear suspension design to the SG/GD).

25f / 22r on an Impreza does not feel like overkill at all on the street, never intrusive as too stiff.
A heavier/taller Forester would benefit more from a little larger overall.

Tire size/height will effect these things a good amount as well.
That's what is suggested for a lowered Foz. They have suspension packages that include their coilovers and the 22/20 is still what they recommend.

There is a thread somewhere that states their reasoning...
 

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2017 VW Golf SportWagen 5MT
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You want to figure out what your goal is and then find a way to meet that goal.

(Let's put tires aside). Usually, if you are after handling you'd start with a better damper and build around that (either stock spring or stiffer if you need), then fine-tune with sway bars. You considering sway bars now assumes you are fine with your stock suspension and you just want to fine-tune. That's fine.

Now. Subarus understeer. That's just how it is. 95% of people's knee-jerk reaction is "need moar rear bar". What that does is give you better grip in the back so when you corner you can feel the rear end working "better", in a way over-compensating for crappy grip in the front. That's fine to a point, downsides are more abrupt changes during weight transfer, or you may even start lifting the rear wheel (bye-bye grip, hello wall/tree/car/curb).

Instead of band-aiding with oversteer, consider fixing lack of front grip by attacking the FRONT. By installing a larger front bar you will get more grip as well as preserve the precious negative camber when cornering. Side effects of a larger front bar is also improved steering feel.

So, ideally, you'd upgrade both bars, keeping the front to rear ratio close to stock. 22mm front / 19mm rear adjustable should work well, 25mm front / 22mm rear may work well too but at that point you may be over-compensating for crappy suspension so your money may be better spent on a better damper and/or spring first.

Auto-x is an exception, there people tend to want a loose rear. Not a great street setup at all, but for whatever reason many look at that as good advice. Fine, but be aware of the difference.

Are we talking about the 2012 in your signature of an SG? I ran 24mm front / 22mm rear on an SG and liked it, but you could easily go softer on a street setup and not loose in handling department (gain if your roads are crap). I did downgrade to 19mm rear and liked it even more (our roads are crap), but it did start pushing more in the wet. I am a big fan of large front bars, not so much for the rear bars.

Stan
 

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2004 Forester XT 6MT DCCD (helical)
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As usual, very nice explanation stan_t.
So far all of this discussion is about the 09-13 SH Foz, not the SG.
I do have to emphasize your point of stiffening the front too much where you start to loose front grip in the wet... Thats no good at all!

The SH generally requires a setup where the front is larger than the rear by ~3mm for sporty handling.
Much bigger front bar than that 3mm diff. might be better in the dry for autox but worse for street driving and a daily driver where it may never be pushed to the point of dry under/oversteer and wet/cold conditions are frequently encountered.

Oh and BTW, most autox subaru guys I know run a proportionately larger front bar to combat transitional understeer, not a larger rear. It was refreshing for me to see that trend.
Now, steady-state cornering like that found on a road course is a different issue...

But for the street driving, going too stiff in general degrades comfort and traction in low-grip situations (where weight transfer is needed) like gravel, wet, cold.
"Feel" is much improved by stiffening both front and rear in proportion, and doing so within reason.

On an SH, I would not go larger than 25mm front and 22m rear for daily driver. 22mm front / 19mm rear is probably very nice.

Unless I go bigger in the rear right?
Correct. On your suspension design you want to keep the front a little bigger than the rear by around ~3mm.
 

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2011 SH S-Edition 5EAT
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I have a Perrin 24/5 mm FSB set to soft (24mm) and a Perrin 22mm RSB set to stiffest (22mm) with Perrin endlinks F & R.

I also have Tein Street Advance coilovers which I'm just starting to find are a little soft for my liking. Brilliant for commuting or doing highway miles, but on "brisk" drives (call in a mountain run for fun :icon_biggrin: ), the rear is just too soft with only a 4kg spring (yes settings have been played with...)
But anyway, I have kept a 2mm FSB bias for many of the reasons posted. Ideally, unless you remove the front drive shafts altogether, you want the car to be neutral. I feel the 21/19 (previous set up) or my current 24/22 delivers this. Assuming dry conditions on decent tarmac, my car will slightly understeer if I hit a corner with too much speed, but if I nail it, I can induce a small amount of power 'oversteer'. But 99% of the time, it's just a solid, balanced setup. I love it.

I would recommend buying a second hand later STi rear bar (19mm), I've seen them on NASIOC for $50 at times, fit that and then see how it goes with your STi suspension set up. You may find you need to go ever so slightly stiffer for your RSB.

If you do go aftermarket bars, I'd also recommend Perrin or Cusco over Whiteline any day...
 
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