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Discussion Starter · #81 · (Edited)
I drove the Impreza over the mountain range and took some of my favorite back roads, saw an old friend and took him for a ride and went to the Portland Cars and Coffee. I didn't have any major issues, but I did learn a few things I need to fix. I am now pretty confident the clunking and clicking from the front was the passenger side axle. I have ordered a new pair of axles and will replace both. And it's time for suspension. I didn't think I would need it at this point because it seems to drive okayish, but after a longer drive on twisty roads I think some of the clunking could be coming from the passenger strut... and I bottomed out a few times, with big friends in the car not even driving very hard... so yeah, it's time.

Trying to decide of I am going to go with KYB adjustable with H and R springs, or coilovers. considering all options I am looking at fortune auto, BC, ST, etc. I am also looking at MeisterR, doesn't seem to be very well known in our circles, but I had a great experience with them on my Miata, and reading reports from the UK where they are based and developed they seem to be well suited for street use on average roads based on reviews I can find. I don't want to create an overly stiff ride, I want it to be compliant as a street car/daily. Not exactly sure what I'm going to do yet....
 

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Discussion Starter · #82 ·
Well I went with what I've had good experience with in the past, I got a set of Meister ZetaCRD. should be here soon. I will post pics and install pictures when they get here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #83 ·
I am almost done with the front end, should be able to get the rear shocks installed after work and drive it today, hopefully its not too challenging to figure out a normalish ride height. I am super excited I found the broken universal joint when I was replacing the axles, and replacing the axles fixed the problem I was having with the front wheels being difficult to spin when up on jack stands. I managed to snap one bolt off in a guide pin on my brakes, but thankfully autozone had them in stock...

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Discussion Starter · #85 ·
Coilovers are installed and ride super nice, I need to raise the front a little bit more, but I have a very bad road into my neighborhood (bumpy/wavy/warped) and it's riding just fine on that. I was a little worried at first it wouldn't go high enough, but after my first adjustment and measuring again I'm confident there won't be a problem. As expected the car doesn't lift the nose under acceleration or dive under braking anymore, but the ride is actually just about as compliant as it was before. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #86 ·
OK, I need to raise the rear about another 1/2 inch or so, but so far it is going very well. Ride is stiff but compliant, not bouncy and I took it on my favorite aggressive back road. It is amazing how much you can learn about your suspension driving a road marked for 55mph with constant switchbacks down to a (suggested) 20mph and two hill climbs and descents. To be fair I really don't have a way of comparing the MeisterR to a lot of the more common and popular suspension setups, or the crappy amazon/ebay variety, so the best I can do is attempt to describe my experience.

My benchmark for this road was my 2006 R53 Mini Cooper S with OEM Bilstein suspension. It has to be one of the most harsh rides on an OEM vehicle out there. The ride was unacceptably jarring with stock 17" wheels and 45 profile runflat tires. I had gone to a 15" wheel with tires with 65 profile tires and non runflat to supplement the harsh suspension. Handles like a go-cart, but it did bottom out on some of the undulations and rough points in the road. I was able to push the limits of traction with this setup on the above mentioned hillclimb road and utilize the car's tendency to lift-off oversteer. In my neighborhood the ride was atrocious, nearly nauseating with constant harsh crashing over the wavy/rough road even at like 20mph

Before the coilover install on the Impreza, I was using the stock "L" suspension and it was best described as almost Buick- like. Not quite a full boat, it actually rode very well over harsh road conditions without the suspension crashing, but it did bottom out a few times, and much worse when I had large friends in the car. It also would lift the nose under hard acceleration and dive under hard braking. It didn't roll too bad in hard turns, I suspect because I have a GD sway bar along with the wider GD sedan track width.

Now, with the MeisterR coilovers installed and adjusted so it is sitting with about 1 1/2 inches of clearance between the top of the tires and the fenders, it is considerably lower than before, but has not bottomed out ( I haven't driven with any other large friend yet). I am just starting to play with the firmness adjustment, I started with them set to fully soft. The car feels planted and firm and I was kind of expecting it to be more jarring over the rough roads, but it's really not at all. The ride is more supple overall than the Mini Cooper was, it doesn't crash over small potholes or feel jarring. I was able to push the limits on the twisty hill climb road quite a bit. I can feel the limits of traction at understeer, lift off slightly and it weight shifts to the nose and hooks up and turns in, so predictable, so much more firm and planted than before. There are a few large undulations and a few significant bumps that it handled in stride, where it bottomed out on the L suspension and the Mini would always bottom out as well.

On my drive home I felt like it was a little bouncy, so later I played with turning in a bit of firmness on the adjuster (10 of 32 clicks), and then drove it again. I do think the bounciness was reduced, I will have to keep playing with it. It does great in my neighborhood at normal 25mph without being harsh or crashing at all, not quite as smooth as the L suspension, but pretty decent. In general It feels like the suspension can keep up with the power now, and it's not too harsh, I'm pretty happy so far.

Now that this monster is actually working I'm starting to go through it, probably time to upgrade those brake lines now that I'm looking at this pic with light on them....
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Yes, I installed the remaining bolts for the camber plates before driving...
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I'll take more pictures after I raise the rear end slightly.
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Discussion Starter · #88 · (Edited)
Hello Folks, Honestly I've been a down on my luck and not thrilled with myself. I didn't trust my own knowledge of the situation, and bought what I thought would be a more comfortable daily, a 2011 manual Forester with 85k on it. I put a lot of money into it, and its not working for my family because its a 5 speed and my wife won't drive it, and it seems to be burning oil. So, I've decided to park it until I can sell it and I'm taking a huge hit, so no money going into the project car for a while. At one point I was so disgusted I considered selling all my subarus just to be able to buy one comfortable decent car, but what fun is that? I'm going to stick with the turbo swapped coupe and the matching green wagon for a daily.
 

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Discussion Starter · #89 ·
I got all the crappy paint off the hood and fender, getting into body work.
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Drove it to the Olympus Rally and got to meet Pastrana. The swap has over 2500 miles on it now with no major issues. It is a scary monster on the twisty backroads of Washinton's Hwy 101 if I don't keep myself restrained.

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Used dry ice to get out the floor insulation, trying to clean it up and install the carpet, finally.

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here is a pic of the matching green OBS
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Discussion Starter · #91 ·
I have been on the schedule for a well known local tuner for a while (tunedbywali), and my time was up. I considered rescheduling with my disaster of a Forester shitting on my budget, but decided to do this in the interest of making sure my engine is healthy and tuned correctly. I had another family emergency delay my scheduled time, but he worked with me and got it done. I didn't really know what I was missing, but the car was still running the same system from the donor with a Cobb accessport. I can't remember all the terminology he used, but I think he said the tune had it running lean on tip in, and then too rich through the mid to top end. He unmarried the Cobb and loaded an open source setup, and spent a several hours going over my system, checking all my work and configuring the ECU. He only found one cracked vent hose, not too shabby! He also agreed with my research about the block and believes it is a version 6 EJ207 from a 1998 STI, with the USDM WRX intake manifold, cam gear, sensor and ECU. No problems running it, and he seemed genuinely impressed with its performance when he was done, he was happy with the response and improved power delivery. It was tuned at 14 pounds before and he backed off the boost because the injectors where reaching 100% duty cycle, so I'm tuned for like 12, I think he said, but it's making much more power through the mid to top end. It is set up for a 7,200 RPM redline, and he said it has anti lag, or was it launch control? I can't remember now, it was late and a long drive home, but the car is snappy when in the power band like never before. He estimated it's putting down 250, which sounds about right and is just fine with me. I need to actually install gauges now that I don't have the cobb anymore... I am so glad I installed the carpet before taking it to him, it makes it feel so much more complete and presentable, the interior is actually starting to come together, kind of sort of... still a long ways to go but more slow progress and its running great!

Also, he liked the suspension, I think its a bit stiff for daily type driving, but really makes the car come alive when you get on it and it feels like it can handle the power and push it to the limits of traction, yet it did actually do well on rough roads with potholes...

(I have about 3000 miles on the swap, 2500 miles on the oil and it has not burned or leaked a drop and the oil is still fairly clean! knock on wood...)
 

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I used to have that same engine with USDM intake as well. Very smooth engine all the way to redline. It might have been the cams or tune or something, but it was noticably less laggy than a USDM ej205.
 

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Discussion Starter · #93 ·
I threw a little bit of rust inhibitor primer and drove it over 700 miles since last Friday. We went to the Oregon Trail Rally and met a lot of the racers including Travis Pastrana again and Ken Block along with his wife and daughter. Very fun taking my son to these events. I included pictures of my favorite car from the Rally, it wasn't racing, but was on display. I spoke with the owner, mind blowing!!! This is an original Homologation special built so Renault could compete in Group B. A Renault R5 Turbo, imported new to the US, never raced, and this guy found it sitting in a field in Salem, Oregon. It is all original and not restored, he was going on about a crack in the dash and I was like, "you have got to be kidding me!" I have no idea what he paid for it, but wow, keep your eyes peeled and hopes up folks, there are gems buried in the backwoods everywhere you turn!

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Took it to our local car meet in Astoria, (shown parked next to our local Evo 4... I won't say it to his face, but pretty sure my shitbox is faster than his super clean JDM Evo import), and I drove it 400 miles yesterday to see a trusted dentist for some major work. It has become my most reliable car. I even allowed my friend to rip it when visiting him on my drive home and he put it in a 4 wheel power slide on dry pavement, it is definitely putting the power down!

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Discussion Starter · #95 ·
Does anyone here work with Adobe Illustrator? I'm attempting to do this sketch. I drew this on one of my pictures. If you work with adobe and have any advice I'm all ears, I'm learning as I go. I just drew this to play with colors before I put down any paint. Everything in this drawing is just gradients, other than the one base color, so I can change it to play with it pretty easily.

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Discussion Starter · #96 ·
Hey folks, just checking in. I haven't made much more progress, but it's still running well. I've spent a lot of time flying RC this summer, went back to my favorite old seaplane contest at Pinehollow Reservoir in Oregon and took the win!

Is anyone planning to attend BigNW in August in Washington? I'll be driving my swap up there. Hoping to attend one of the "post event GC meets" maybe I'll see you there!
 

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I got all the crappy paint off the hood and fender, getting into body work.


Drove it to the Olympus Rally and got to meet Pastrana. The swap has over 2500 miles on it now with no major issues. It is a scary monster on the twisty backroads of Washinton's Hwy 101 if I don't keep myself restrained.






Used dry ice to get out the floor insulation, trying to clean it up and install the carpet, finally.



here is a pic of the matching green OBS
Sounds like a fun project! how big of a pain in the ass was it to use the dry ice to get the deadening out? Thinking of doing the same.
 
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