SG Rear shocks, transition from SLS to non-SLS - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-28-2011, 11:45 AM Thread Starter
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SG Rear shocks, transition from SLS to non-SLS

Recently changed rear shocks on my -05 forester 2.5XT. I went from original leaking SLS (Self Leveling Shock) to cheaper non-SLS + custom-made stiffer springs. Thought i´d share the process with you guys, since most of you probably want the non-sls shocks due to the high price of the original shocks. Here´s a small guide with some pics:

First pic: Car on stand and wheel removed. The sls shock has the extra tube in the lower portion, and thus has softer springs.

Second pic: Start by compress the springs with spring compressors, duh :P

Third pic: Use a screwdriver or other sharp tool to remove the clip to the brake hose

Fourth pic: Remove the 3 screws on the top tower after removing the plastic panel in the trunk. This will loosen the upper section of the shock/spring combo from the car.

Fifth pic: Remove the 2 bolts behind the brake disc and the whole package is loose. Use wd-40 or 5-56 or similar cause they will probably be a bit hard to remove :) muscle flex time :P

Sixth pic: Old vs New shock/spring/dust covers/top hat. Clean the rubber seatings (top and bottom) if you didn´t purchase new ones.

Seventh pic: Compress the new springs, bolt the top hat on the shock (top hat has a mark that says "out", point it towards you, or out from the car) and then mount it with the 2 bolts below and 3 nuts on the top. Fasten the brake hose with the clip, remove spring compressors, and you´re done.
Do the same procedure on the other side.

Eight pic: Back to original height.

The shocks are Sachs super touring model that i purchased in finland, and the springs were custom made by Springcoil, a sheffield located spring manufacturer. Big thanks to the member Gigsy, who measured up the springs with springcoil, and recommended these in the forum, they work like a charm. It was easy to import to sweden: started with mail contact, then phoned my credit card details (125 GBP and a +3% card fee was the cost for a pair) and waited for the package to arrive in the mail. You can have any color you want, and adjust height and stiffness to your liking. Contact Keith at Springcoil, he knows what his talking about. The total cost was less than ONE original sls shock by doing it myself, probably the price of one if you take it to a shop/mechanic :)

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Subaru Forester 2.5XT -05

Last edited by ForesterMatte; 08-28-2011 at 11:48 AM. Reason: Explain SLS
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-28-2011, 12:21 PM
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Awesome write up id suggest sticky but we have a lot of stickys already, should maybe have a sticky folder?


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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-28-2011, 01:15 PM
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agreed, about time we had a sticky on SG shocks.... Conversion to non-SLS seems to be coming up more and more recently.

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-23-2011, 02:09 AM
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Hey all you Fozzie fans!
So I'm new to the forum, but hopefully someone can help me out. I'm right there as well, needing to change a lot of parts on my '03 SG 2.0X (the only model ever sold in India, where I currently am). It's the perfect car for what I do, but there's no Subaru dealers in India any more.. (they were sold by Chevrolet back then, when GM owned a slice of the company).
My question is - does switching from SLS to non-SLS change the ride and handling of the vehicle? Is it worse or is it fine? My options here include the usual KYBs, but also Konis, and Black Art Designs competition struts. And frankly, it'd be really nice to have good quality parts for serious driving and long Himalayan road trips.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-23-2011, 02:25 AM
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For me, I think it feels better than it did because the shocks and springs are new, but I'm not sure it's any better than a non-leaking SLS setup. I don't carry much weight in the back, so can't comment on the benefits of SLS struts.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-23-2011, 11:34 AM
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Nice write up. I mean to do them when I do some work but always forget to take pics. Nice colour too.
Springcoil seem to be one of those little gems that that the internet throws up from time to time. One the Mods should try to flog them some advertisng space on here. They would do well.

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 09:45 AM
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Idiots guide. Just the thing I need.

So you don't need to replace the struts? Just the shocks and springs?
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 10:53 AM
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I think the term shock absorber would be the combination of strut and spring together, so you need both the strut and the spring.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 11:45 AM
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Great write up, will come in useful for my future plans.
Cheers

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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-24-2011, 12:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mando View Post
Idiots guide. Just the thing I need.

So you don't need to replace the struts? Just the shocks and springs?
Quote:
Originally Posted by bbjohhny View Post
I think the term shock absorber would be the combination of strut and spring together, so you need both the strut and the spring.
Shock + spring + top hat = MacPherson strut


MacPherson strut - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Was: 3 x WRX, 1 x Foz XT
Now: BMW M235i + X1, Cooper S, KTM 450 EXC, Triumph Tiger XCx
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 07:35 PM
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Wink Forrester rear shock replacement

Hello people what an awesome thread. I am about to do my rear shocks on MY 05 Forester and this is so helpful. I have ordered the shock/strut from autobarn and the spring coil from dobinsons near Campbelltown, Sydney.

I will remove everything while the order is on its way.

Can't wait to finish it. I also had a look at the roof top tent at Dobinsons and loved it and I am considering fitting that to the roof.
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 11:38 PM
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Judging by the rust free condtion of the underside of your car I would guess Sweden doesn't salt their roads.

Max.

2005 UK XTEn 4EAT sports shift
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-23-2013, 05:00 AM
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Do you need to notify your insurer if you go from SLS to non SLS?

I know a guy who changed his air suspension on a Range Rover to Bilstein dampers and springs but got shafed when someone crashed into him and his insurer would not pay out due to the vehicle being non standard.

He fought and lost even though the supension components were fitted by a LR main stealer!

My torque was vectored. Now I've none.
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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-23-2013, 09:19 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agkq62 View Post
Judging by the rust free condtion of the underside of your car I would guess Sweden doesn't salt their roads.

Max.
They do in the southern parts and all the way up the east coastline, but not in the north inland. I now live in a town near the coast so i guess more rust are coming :(

Subaru Forester 2.5XT -05
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-23-2013, 12:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gigsy View Post
Shock + spring + top hat = MacPherson strut


MacPherson strut - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Actually it's damper + spring + top hat = MacPherson strut

The shock absorber is the spring

Mike

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