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2002 Forester L Auto
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After much patience and research I have decided to send my car into the local subaru tuner to have my fozzy suspension converted into a WRX suspension.

Ive sourced all the parts out (looking at about 1100 for all new parts- gr2's, new mounts, springs). Im okay woth spending the coin because I love the car and it desperately needs it.

My mechanic has instructed me that I need to use wagon style parts for the rear. So today while looking in the classifieds I came across a guy that has an entire assembly in like new condition for a 02 wrx sedan. Hes only asking 500$.. so now im curious. Is there a specific reason my guy is telling me to use wagon parts? Or is there a way to make the sedan parts work (properly).

I am very excited to have this job done, but I want it done right. And if there's an opportunity to save a little money id jump on it..as long as its the correct way of doing things.

Thanks in advance

Andrew
 

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2007 XT Sport 5MT
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24,014 Posts
Ultimately you only need wagon springs. Otherwise you'll have a little sag in the rear end.
The sedan fitment struts will work just fine on your car.

I just lowered my '02 Forester last weekend using WRX sedan struts with wagon-fitment lowering springs.
 

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1997 Forester T/tb auto
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I just swapped over 04 wrx sedan struts on my sf5.. it rubs in the back.. but not terribly only when someone sits behind there.. thats on 225 55 17 tyres. ive ordered the subtle solutions 3/8 spacers and im gonna take down my tire size to 225 50 or 45?
 

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2002 Forester L Auto
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Ultimately you only need wagon springs. Otherwise you'll have a little sag in the rear end.
The sedan fitment struts will work just fine on your car.

I just lowered my '02 Forester last weekend using WRX sedan struts with wagon-fitment lowering springs.
Im guessing thats what all this talk about "saggy butt" is about? In that case, what type of spacer would you use? Would you use a thicker spacer to counteract the sag vs what you get from wagon springs?

Will both sedan and wagon struts leave me with a sag?
 

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2007 XT Sport 5MT
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either spring can cause sag, but the sedan springs most definitely will cause more sag than wagon ones.
On my FXT I used to run STi springs (sedan) with a 3/8" spacer and it rode evenly.
My current setup on my '02 runs wagon lowering springs and a ½" spacer and it sit fairly even.
Judge for yourself:




The sag is really all in the eye of the beholder. The 3/8" spacer is the typical size people will run with sedan springs.
 

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2002 Forester L Auto
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
either spring can cause sag, but the sedan springs most definitely will cause more sag than wagon ones.
On my FXT I used to run STi springs (sedan) with a 3/8" spacer and it rode evenly.
My current setup on my '02 runs wagon lowering springs and a ½" spacer and it sit fairly even.
Judge for yourself:




The sag is really all in the eye of the beholder. The 3/8" spacer is the typical size people will run with sedan springs.
I like the way your car sits dude. Thats on wrx struts as well? What kind of lowering springs are you using? Im more concerned about rubbing than anything. Not to mention that if im going to pay someone to do this I only want to pay them once.
 

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2007 XT Sport 5MT
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They're wrx sedan struts with swift sport wrx wagon springs (04-07), and the tires are 225/55-17 Michelin X-ice2's
I haven't experienced any rubbing yet that isn't snow buildup related...



My setup could be more easily duplicated with a set of 02-03 WRX sedan replacement struts (KYB, Monroe, etc) with the 02-03 WRX wagon Swift springs and a basic 3/8" spacer in the rear. My 04-07 springs have more rear sag than the 02-03 versions, which would actually work with your OE top mounts.
 

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2012 XT Touring 4EAT
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Andrew:

After much patience and research I have decided to send my car into the local subaru tuner to have my fozzy suspension converted into a WRX suspension.
So far, so good

Ive sourced all the parts out (looking at about 1100 for all new parts- gr2's, new mounts, springs). Im okay woth spending the coin because I love the car and it desperately needs it.

My mechanic has instructed me that I need to use wagon style parts for the rear. So today while looking in the classifieds I came across a guy that has an entire assembly in like new condition for a 02 wrx sedan. Hes only asking 500$.. so now im curious. Is there a specific reason my guy is telling me to use wagon parts? Or is there a way to make the sedan parts work (properly).
Both wagon or sedan parts will fit. But wagon springs are a bit stiffer and will work better. Frankly, even the wagon springs are a bit on the soft side - nice ride, but not for the race track.

As for your proposed deal, I would hold on that. Look on NASIOC and try to find WRX wagon springs only. They are frequently available. That's where I bought mine - all 4 for $50 plus ship a year or so back.

Then buy NEW struts designed for the WRX wagon. KYB's are popular, Monroe also makes a set. I bought my KYBs off of Amazon - best price I could find - Shock Warehouse, as I recall. Used struts from any '02 vehicle are a bad idea, because they wear out. Any used struts are a questionable idea, unless you really know and trust the seller and he only used them to drive to church on Sundays. BTW, springs wear out as well, but they last a lot longer than struts.

I ended up using 1/2" rear saggy butt spacers plus longer studs, all from Paranoid Fabrications. Easy. Fit fine. Saggy butt spacers are a visual thing.

I am very excited to have this job done, but I want it done right. And if there's an opportunity to save a little money id jump on it..as long as its the correct way of doing things.
Why not do it yourself? You can borrow a spring compressor from most auto parts stores. About the only other tool you might need is a big breaker bar plus a big cheater. A friend helped me, and brought with him a 3/4" drive ratchet plus 4' cheater - serious torque. We used a regular Snap-on socket on a few of the strut bolts but this socket broke. Then we switched to an impact socket and it worked just fine. These bolts are very tight! Be sure to note the exact head position of the front camber bolts.

You really need two people - one under the wheel well and one above in the engine compartment or trunk. Figure about 4 hours total - 1 hour per corner - with time out for a beer or whatever. Jack up the whole front or rear of the vehicle, so as not to 'twist' the suspension parts.




p.s. Another responder mentioned Swift Springs. Good choice. But, if you are putting on WRX wagon struts, then get Swift Springs for the WRX wagon. Forester struts need Forester springs. WRX struts need WRX springs. No mixing
 

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2017 VW Golf SportWagen 5MT
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Reason you want sedan rear struts is location and angle of the holes at the bottom of the strut where it mounts to the hub. Wagon has narrower track than the sedan (and the Forester), using wagon struts in the rear will result in too much negative camber. At least, on SG. Otherwise, there is no difference in dimensions or valving in sedan vs. wagon strut.

You don't want to run WRX sedan rear springs, they are rediculously short and soft for the car. Putting spacers on the tophats will not fix the problem of the spring being too short and soft -- just don't use those springs. I would not use any stock WRX suspension parts at all, but many seem to like them. I don't see why anyone would choose that setup over Forester struts with Swift springs, but whatever.

For your $1,100 budget I'd get some blown WRX sedan struts, gut them and install KONI inserts. Add some OEM STi springs ($40-$80 used) and you'll be way ahead of any stock Subaru setup in comfort, handling and probably even longevity.

Stan
 

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2002 Forester L Auto
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Andrew:



So far, so good



Both wagon or sedan parts will fit. But wagon springs are a bit stiffer and will work better. Frankly, even the wagon springs are a bit on the soft side - nice ride, but not for the race track.

As for your proposed deal, I would hold on that. Look on NASIOC and try to find WRX wagon springs only. They are frequently available. That's where I bought mine - all 4 for $50 plus ship a year or so back.

Then buy NEW struts designed for the WRX wagon. KYB's are popular, Monroe also makes a set. I bought my KYBs off of Amazon - best price I could find - Shock Warehouse, as I recall. Used struts from any '02 vehicle are a bad idea, because they wear out. Any used struts are a questionable idea, unless you really know and trust the seller and he only used them to drive to church on Sundays. BTW, springs wear out as well, but they last a lot longer than struts.

I ended up using 1/2" rear saggy butt spacers plus longer studs, all from Paranoid Fabrications. Easy. Fit fine. Saggy butt spacers are a visual thing.



Why not do it yourself? You can borrow a spring compressor from most auto parts stores. About the only other tool you might need is a big breaker bar plus a big cheater. A friend helped me, and brought with him a 3/4" drive ratchet plus 4' cheater - serious torque. We used a regular Snap-on socket on a few of the strut bolts but this socket broke. Then we switched to an impact socket and it worked just fine. These bolts are very tight! Be sure to note the exact head position of the front camber bolts.

You really need two people - one under the wheel well and one above in the engine compartment or trunk. Figure about 4 hours total - 1 hour per corner - with time out for a beer or whatever. Jack up the whole front or rear of the vehicle, so as not to 'twist' the suspension parts.




p.s. Another responder mentioned Swift Springs. Good choice. But, if you are putting on WRX wagon struts, then get Swift Springs for the WRX wagon. Forester struts need Forester springs. WRX struts need WRX springs. No mixing

Thanks for the input, its greatly appreciated. To be honest I really do want to attempt the swap myself but its averaging between -10 and -18c here and my suspension issue is getting pretty bad. Its just too effing cold out and I already work all day outside.

My guy is going to do the whole thing for 200$ and all I have to do is drive there. I will be attempting the wrx(or) lgt break swap myself this summer. Fortunately I have a few months before that becomes dire.

I found another kyb dealer about an hour from me that is going to save me a bunch of money. Hes given me a quote on

04-07 wrx wagon struts
Swift sport springs to match
Kyb rear top mounts
Whiteline front top mounts
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I know this isn't exactly related but I dont want to start another thread. Ive found a nice set of oem wrx wheels from 2011. They should fit without problem right?
 

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2007 XT Sport 5MT
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With appropriately sized tires they will fit just fine.
They have a higher offset, but are a bit wider than your stock wheels. They should look quite nice, and will easily clear the WRX suspension.


For your $1,100 budget I'd get some blown WRX sedan struts, gut them and install KONI inserts. Add some OEM STi springs ($40-$80 used) and you'll be way ahead of any stock Subaru setup in comfort, handling and probably even longevity.

Stan
Pricing is a bit different north of the border. That setup is roughly 30% more expensive up here due to either increased shipping costs or local taxes and duties on the parts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
With appropriately sized tires they will fit just fine.
They have a higher offset, but are a bit wider than your stock wheels. They should look quite nice, and will easily clear the WRX suspension.




Pricing is a bit different north of the border. That setup is roughly 30% more expensive up here due to either increased shipping costs or local taxes and duties on the parts.
Thanks buddy, you've been incredibly helpful. Ill be sure to post some pics in my journal when its done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
With appropriately sized tires they will fit just fine.
They have a higher offset, but are a bit wider than your stock wheels. They should look quite nice, and will easily clear the WRX suspension.




Pricing is a bit different north of the border. That setup is roughly 30% more expensive up here due to either increased shipping costs or local taxes and duties on the parts.
So the guy with the wrx wheels is being a real shady pain in the ***. The deal is too good to turn down (400$ for 2011 wrx wheels on 70% tires) but he's being incredibly difficult to deal with so im counting on it falling through.

A different set came on the classifieds of the local subaru club forum today. A pair of Drag DR34 17" wheels with
Cooper Zorn rs3 tires for 600$. The wheels are immaculate and the guy is being very easy to deal with. They are a 45 offset.

What will the difference in offset do? I like the look of the wheels being flush with the body or even poking out a bit.

What do you guys think? With more space between the spoke I'm definatly have t convert the drum s before summer
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i Base 6MT
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Hi all! This seems to be the right place and the most recent thread related to my question.

I can get a deal on 03 wrx wagon suspension (struts/springs/tophats). I have a 2005 XT. Will the stock 03 wrx wagon suspension fit fine? I just got an aggressive fitment wheel set up and want to lower a couple inches to close the gap. Would I need to to any customization, or is it pretty much just a clean swap?

Thanks!
 

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2007 XT Sport 5MT
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So the guy with the wrx wheels is being a real shady pain in the ***. The deal is too good to turn down (400$ for 2011 wrx wheels on 70% tires) but he's being incredibly difficult to deal with so im counting on it falling through.

A different set came on the classifieds of the local subaru club forum today. A pair of Drag DR34 17" wheels with
Cooper Zorn rs3 tires for 600$. The wheels are immaculate and the guy is being very easy to deal with. They are a 45 offset.

What will the difference in offset do? I like the look of the wheels being flush with the body or even poking out a bit.
The 17" Drag wheels will sit similar to stock. They're only going to stick out about 15mm further than a set of OE 16" Forester wheels. It will be a noticeable difference, but it isn't going to poke like you're hoping for.

I can get a deal on 03 wrx wagon suspension (struts/springs/tophats). I have a 2005 XT. Will the stock 03 wrx wagon suspension fit fine? I just got an aggressive fitment wheel set up and want to lower a couple inches to close the gap. Would I need to to any customization, or is it pretty much just a clean swap?
If the '03 suspension is complete then it will be a simple swap. If the top hats weren't included it would be more complicated.
 

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The 17" Drag wheels will sit similar to stock. They're only going to stick out about 15mm further than a set of OE 16" Forester wheels. It will be a noticeable difference, but it isn't going to poke like you're hoping for.



If the '03 suspension is complete then it will be a simple swap. If the top hats weren't included it would be more complicated.
Thanks Duderotomy!

What kind of drop should I expect from this? Looking at the strut specs in the sticky gives me an idea, but one never really knows until it's done.

Thanks!
 
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