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2000 Impreza 2.5RS BRP Coupe
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So... here's the story... (for short summary read the BOLD and look at the pictures)

My car, a 2000Subaru Impreza 2.5RS Coupe, has been sitting in my garage for the last 4 years. I raced SCCA semi-competitively, it was my daily, and I love this car very very much and will likely never sell it.





So what happened...

About 4 years ago in November, my car developed a noise. It ended up I needed to replace wheel bearing. I had never replaced a wheel bearing before and started researching. For the dealer, it was going to cost about 580 a side... At this time in my life I was a sophomore in college and my key focus was SCHOOL. Period. I had no job and a tiny stipend from my parents. When I was driving home one day, the car began to vibrate violently. The bearing had gotten so bad it was causing MASSIVE camber changes in the car and almost rubbed the sidewall through and the tire was VERY HOT. SO i parked the car at my grandmothers.


VIDEO
(notice the dirt below the wheel? That is rust falling off the car when rubber malleting the rotor off)

I opted to do the work my self. (which I have always done anyways, but I really just wanted my car back on the road and I didnt have the time, money, or resources) Every weekend I would get a ride in and try and work on it.

The First Dilemma: The Lateral Link Bolt

The process is very simple to remove the bearing. First you remove a bolt that holds the trailing arm then a 14" long bolt that holds two lower control arms to the knuckle. This give the knuckle enough play to remove the axle from the knuckle.


However the 14" bolt was seized in the knuckle. Oxy/Acetyl was used to heat it. MULTIPLE penetrating oils were used. 14' breaker/cheater. No success. The next step was to attempt to remove the control arms from the crossmember and leave them attached to the knuckle. As you can see in the photos below this was also a failure. With 6 pt sockets and same techniques of applying heat and penetrating oils, the nut holding the arms on were only disintegrating, especially with nut extractors.
I ended up cutting the knuckles and sawzawing the rest off.

Upon closer inspection of the chassis... I was faced with things like this...




In this picture you can see the two lower lateral links still attached to the 14" bolt that is seized to the knuckle.



With the knuckle off of the car, I decided to take the entire rusted/worn suspension out.








I don't feel that I need to explain much more about how frustrating the entire process was... Everything... was in terrible shape and I was shocked I was driving a car in this condition...

The Second Dilemma: The Balljoint

As you can see in the picture above, the front knuckle has the balljoint fastened inverted where the cup is pinched into the knuckle. While it was already impossible to remove the bolt that held it in place... it was even MORE of a chore to determine how to remove the balljoint from the knuckle...



There was no thread online with a definitive solution to removing the balljoints. Others didn't seem to have as much trouble as I did... so I made a tool...



AND IT WORKED!




New vs old



The Third Dilemma: ...

Ok, enough with the headings... the point is... the car is saturated with rust... EVERY piece of hardware snap even with heating and penetrating oil... the Suspension was just.... Look Do Not EVER buy a NORTHERN car...EVER... I'm serious. 240 or not... but don't buy 240's anyway because they are SOOOOO 2003...


So basically EVERY issue is RUST related... TIME/MONEY/TIME/MONEY... except the exhaust gaskets were all terrible, the carpet was in tatters (and my foot would get caught up in it badly), and I need to replace the O2 sensor AND do a compression test due to misfiring issues caused from header leak AND poor plugs... sigh it was just sad.








 

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2000 Impreza 2.5RS BRP Coupe
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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
So where does that put me...


All of the hardware is in TERRIBLE condition. Even if I could tighten all back down again, it would likely break on the way in or on its way back out, and for every thing else, there is surface rust forming.

The interior has some "extra hardware" scattered, the CD player is bunk, carpet is in tatters, and the alarm system is funky~ish.

The paint is flaking due to engine heat in places.

GRADUATION AND JOB IS ACQUIRED!

Looked like I needed to start buying parts......Money was tight so I started of with ordering hardware... just a few at a time with my stipend. All hardware is OEM from the dealer.





Ultimately ending up with ...

-4 New Bearings and seals
-Whiteline Lateral Links to replace old arms
- New trailing arm, lower knuckle, LCA offeset bushings (and STi Grp N. LCA bushing)
- Subaru OEM factory hardware for ENTIRE SUSPENSION
- New OEM carpet from Subaru


This was a little more than enough to get me back on the road.... but it didn't stop there... even with all the work I had to do in this box alone..
I didn't want this to EVER happen to my car again, like I said I want to keep my car FOREVER... I love this car. So I went to Larry's Powder-coating and had my knuckles,trailing arms and calipers painted.



I have this problem often...



After I rebuilt the calipers, I used a brake honing tool to get the remaining rust out and then fill this with more anti-seize than you can shake a Fit at.


- OEM Rebuild kit and greases.
- Speed bleeders WHICH I HIGHLY HIGHLY HIGHLY SUGGEST BUYING!


The Work:

-All threads on the frame were chased with thread chasers and filled with anti-seize

-All components were torqued to OEM FSM specs and ADJUSTED for anti-seize with a NEW, broken-in torque wrench (no calibration guessing) with Crow's feet where applicable.


ALL ... and I mean ALL surface rust... on interior metal pieces, harness bar, rack, underside.. was taken to with a wire wheel and spray painted high temp non-gloss silver (not pictured)


Bench setup:

OFFset bushings had to be pressed in, in the right direction to give the car more CASTER (went and bought a shop press)


New Whiteline bushings ALL AROUND THE CAR... Because Race Car! and Bushings and shit!

Before and After shots of suspension







Got to the underside with some undercoat. TIP: DO NOT BUY CHEAP SHIT. BUY 3M. STUFF WILL NEVER EVER DRY EVEN AFTER MONTHS!






Then... I started buying new parts...



Also (not pictured) STi Grp N. Rear Top Hats (rare and nice for my car) and a rear strut tower bar. (need to get a front.. come to think of it)

Now to get them on the car...











<Updating constantly>
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
UPDATE

Waiting on LAST SRS19 ECU to be sold from Crawford (they have been discontinued)... Just shipped it off yesterday for my tune.



The car as it sits, awaiting ECU...



 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I would have to look up the color code again, but it's some form of a red/orange. BUT it looked too glossy, so I ave them go over it with a 70% matte clear coat. It IS powder coated, it's not a spray paint.

Thanks! I worked REALLY hard on the car to get it back together.

Hopefully, I should not have to drop the rear diff... that being said it does need some new fluids.

I have steering rack bushings, but I am afraid to install them. The hardware is REALLY tight and I am afraid it is going to break. The threaded end is impossible to get a torch on, DOES ANYONE HAVE A GOOD SUGGESTION?! I REALLY want to put those in.


NEXT ON THE LIST:
- EL headers and high flow cat (any recommendations? Might just go to exhaust shop)
- Grp N engine/tranny mounts The engine shakes HORRIBLY
- Shift Linkage update
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I just have to say.... MY CAR FEELS GLORIOUS!!!!

Just reinstalled a refreshed A/C.. SOOOOOOOOOO COOOOOOOOOLD

Dialed in suspension... Neutral... but STUCK. I NEVER thought my car could feel this good.

Brakes... Why would ANYONE want to upgrade to bigger brakes, when you can rebuild your stock ones and have slotted rotors and a good set of pads....
****ADJUST YOUR PEDAL THROW! IT MAKES A MASSIVE DIFFERENCE!!!!***

The SRS19 is also a VERY noticeable change... MUCH MUCH smoother and more power across the powerband.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
So subing it sounds like 80% of the people out by me lol have the same issues, word of warning never try to drop your rear diff carrier you do not want to deal with fixing that just ask combatchuck lol
What if I am replacing it with R180 or something? Was the problem from the chassis or from the frame itself?

I have done a number of subframe swaps for cars like 240's, but from what I can tell we do not have studs for our carriers so alignment must be impossible...
 

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Modsterdomus
2000 STM RS Sedan 5spd
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Josh did the steering rack bushing and may be able to offer some insight. I do believe lots of cursing is involved.

As for adjusting pedal throw to make brakes feel better, please elaborate.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Josh did the steering rack bushing and may be able to offer some insight. I do believe lots of cursing is involved.

As for adjusting pedal throw to make brakes feel better, please elaborate.
The rust has me terrified as the threads are not accessible from the backside of the frame.



What I mean by adjusting the pedal is adjusting the brake master cylinder to pedal. This basically allows you to push the pedal down less for more engagement.

The Good: VERY sensitive and STRONG brakes.
The Bad: Kind of a hassle to adjust in car with a fear of kinking a brake line. The pedal comes up from the floor more, making it difficult to heel-toe.
Conclusion:WORTH IT. Just trust me on this.

I just found this thread too. Apparently this issue is more common than I thought.

http://www.rs25.com/forums/f9/t83600-everyone-has-long-pedal-travel-before-brakes-engage-read.html
 

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Good to see Ruri's still running! I remember your journal being inspiration for me to start modding my RS.

What if I am replacing it with R180 or something? Was the problem from the chassis or from the frame itself?

I have done a number of subframe swaps for cars like 240's, but from what I can tell we do not have studs for our carriers so alignment must be impossible...
You don't have to replace the subframe to put an R180 in, I'm on a stock GC subframe myself.

The rear subframe is bolted to the chassis by captive nuts that are inaccessible without cutting through the chassis should they break loose. In my case, three of the four captive nuts broke loose and not only could I not get the subframe off, but it was loose and could not be secured back in place. I had to have someone cut small squares in the underside of the chassis and fold them back to tighten the subframe bolts back down, then replace the squares and undercoat them again. Not fun :)
 

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Damn man, you've gone above and beyond getting this thing in great shape! Its a shame people wont see most of it! I didn't know oem carpet comes in black, may have to call my buddy at my local dealer and put an order in. Subscribing to this thread, keep up the good work
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Been working on acquiring a few items. Which led to neglecting just getting the car running as is...









I think you can see where I am going with this...

Roses are red
Subies are blue
This guy has an EJ22

T
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Picked up another parts car for my Rally Car Build

The chassis being rebuilt







The RS parts car



RS chassis I got free... It came with

ALK
cheap coilovers
front and rear sway bar
5 speed AWD RS
coupe stuff (doors and windows)
moonroof
 
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