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Old 11-28-2001, 10:08 AM   #1
Yebisu69
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Default STi Front stabilizer/bushing kit + WRX stock 20mm Rear swaybar

Hi Guys and Girls,

Does anyone have the STi 19.5mm front stabilizer and bushing kit for the sedan?

I have an 02RS. The suspension was nice and tight for about 500 miles. Since then it has been getting pretty soft. I am still running with the stock 13mm rear bar.


Should I get this front stabilizer kit and 20mm WRX stock rear bar or should I just upgrade to the rear bar? Is there a better rear bar to use with the front bar? Also I am trying to keep everything Subaru to preserve my warranty.

Scott at subaruparts.com believes that the stock WRX 20mm rear bar and the front stabilizer kit will bring back some stiffness in the suspension and reduce the understeer.

From what I have read, on the articles on stabilizer bars, a 50% distibution in the suspension is undesirable. So does a 19.5mm front bar/ kit and a 20mm rear bar constitute a 50% distribution?

Thanks for any input!
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Old 11-28-2001, 12:11 PM   #2
ANZAC_1915
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You'll notice more change from just the 20mm rear bar.

If the 02 RS front sway bar is 20mm, the 19mm will indeed reduce understeer, but perhaps at the expense of overall roll stiffness, which you want to keep.

I know it is more money, but I recommend the entire kit (and in your car, the 20mm rear bar as well).

See the other thread in this forum about bushings.

Glenn
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Old 11-28-2001, 04:05 PM   #3
UCI_Scott
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I have it. Total install so far:
  • front stabilzer / bushing kit;
  • aluminum control arms;
  • Subaru 4-piston front brakes w/ EBC Green Stuff pads;
  • fresh (non-scored!) rotors;
  • braided ss brake lines;
  • STi strut top mounts.
All this rolling on 18" O-Z P1 wheels and Bridgestone RE730 tires (225/40 R18). I have DMS golds sitting in the garage but I haven't decided if I will use them yet.

Verdict so far: these mods are a great, though somewhat pricey, improvement in overall WRX handling. Understeer is noticeably reduced, approaching neutral. The entire system has been firmed up with virtually no decrease in ride comfort. I had a delightful spirited drive through Ojai Canyon on Friday and was able to make confident subtle mid-turn corrections that were preveously too mushy to feel.

I know this system doesn't reflect your setup, but I can say that I personally like what it has done to my car's handling. I would have liked to make more incremental changes, but it costs a lot of labor to disassemble all that stuff over and over again.
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Old 11-28-2001, 04:17 PM   #4
Yebisu69
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Default Shop time is expensive!

I'm thinking the same thing. Shop time costs money. If I get the front stabilizer/bushing kit, I was thinking about installing the aluminum control arm, STi struts and springs at the same time.

From what I understand, the mechanic needs to take the front end totally apart to replace the bushings. If that is true, then I would be paying every time I replace something else under the bushing.

What do think?

Drive around with the rear stabilizer bar upgrade, then put in the front stabilizer kit and suspension?

Or wait and do everything at the same time?
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Old 11-28-2001, 04:45 PM   #5
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Hey, UCI_Scott,

Did you notice a difference from your STi tophats? Did they firm up the stock suspension any? Thanks.
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Old 11-28-2001, 07:57 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by no_rex_yet
Hey, UCI_Scott,

Did you notice a difference from your STi tophats? Did they firm up the stock suspension any?
As I intimated, when you change so many components at one time it is difficult to pinpoint the exact cause of all the effects you feel. The overall effect is that the entire car has tightened up to a higher resonent frequency. It is more responsive in all things including road surface compliance, steering response, and recovery. Everything has a "crisper" feel to it.

--scott
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Old 11-28-2001, 10:56 PM   #7
ANZAC_1915
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Turn in is much better with the kit.

To install the alum arms involves removing the front sub frame (10 or 12 bolts, no biggie), which happens to make the front sway bar install easier.

The rear bushes involve removing the rear subframe and lateral links. You can skip it if you don't feel like it. In particular, I'd be concerned about the subframe bushes adding too much NVH.

But the springs/struts/arms/front bar rock as a combo.

Glenn

PS reminder that there are two washers in the sway bar kit that must be used in installing the sway bar end links to the alum arms.

PPS there is a running change in torque for 2 of the front subframe bolts. The new shop manual supplement has the details. (new torque spec for newer cars, old torque spec for older cars). I will try and post a scan.
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Old 11-29-2001, 03:06 AM   #8
Kostamojen
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Hmm, I wonder if those control arms help with turn in and dive like an Anti-lift kit would, cause they have new mounts...

Oh, and isnt the front bar smaller, not bigger in the kit?
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Old 11-29-2001, 11:40 AM   #9
ANZAC_1915
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Yes, the front bar is indeed smaller.

I think the bushes on the arms make the difference, rather than the arms themselves.

Glenn
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Old 11-29-2001, 02:36 PM   #10
UCI_Scott
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Quote:
Originally posted by Glenn Wallace
Yes, the front bar is indeed smaller.

I think the bushes on the arms make the difference, rather than the arms themselves.
What he said. Word. Absolutely. Subaru's bundling of these suspension upgrades into these various packages is a little annoying, but the end result is I ended up getting the aluminum arms when I probably would not have sprung for them had the parts been available less "bundled." I accept that as a "plus."

The mounting position of the front control arm rear bushing remains the same; it does not alter the caster of the front wheels and thus does not have the anti-lift effect. But as the components that make up the suspension and tie it to the chassis firm up, the benefits of the anti-lift kit decrease while the negative impacts remain constant.

The price of the parts for the factory suspension upgrade can't be beat. The installation, however, almost doubles the installed cost. This is why, in virtually every case, getting a from-the-factory performance car is such a good deal. The phantom STi that we may or may not get here will come with upgrades that would cost around $10,000 in parts and labor to do yourself, plus warranty, plus the fact of being fully integrated. Bargain.

--scott
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Old 11-29-2001, 03:54 PM   #11
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Also the springs/struts have a huge impact on the lift and dive.

They basically eliminate it.

Glenn
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