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Old 09-24-2000, 07:11 PM   #1
wistful
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Royal Oak, MI
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2004 STi
Java Black Pearl

Post winter driving

I have lived in Southern California all my life where the weather is always beautiful. Now, I live in the middle of a snowbelt. Any tips/advice on keeping my MY00 coupe in on piece? suggestions for winter tires? Oh ***** maneuvuers?

Don

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Old 09-24-2000, 07:54 PM   #2
Black98RS
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Wink

BAWWWHAHAHAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!

Your in for a shockingly good time mate!

(Thank god you have a AWD car, now.)

I'm sorry, I just had to do that. I have lived in Iowa all my life and one of the funniest things I have ever seen is people in the south (sunbelt states) trying to drive in slick and snowy conditions.

Their main problem is that they drive too fast. A sure way not to get into a wreck is to just take it slow and easy and drive cautiously. No sudden moves. No quick stops. Stay the heck away from everybody else on the road. Don't get close to anyone.

There is no such thing as a quick stop on slicks roads, ABS, AWD, snow tires or no.

Rally cars have studded tires...that's why they are so fast on that slick crap.
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Old 09-24-2000, 08:32 PM   #3
Narso
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1999 2.5 RS
Aspen White

Cool

Black98RS is exactly right. The key is NO sudden moves. Just remember what you learned in high school physics about momentum. Also, be on the lookout for the Jethros in the SUV's. They figure that since they have the big stomper 4x4's, the nasty weather is an excuse to drive like they own the road.

Dan Z.
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Old 09-24-2000, 08:33 PM   #4
markus
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Location: St. Albert, AB, Canada
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2004 STi
White on Gold

Post

Two words:

SNOW TIRES!!!

Make the investment in a good pair of snow tires and the transition to snow will be relatively painless. Also, the first day or two after the first snowfall is a good time to give yourself at least twice the distance between you and everyone else on the road.

Suggestions fr snow tires? Bridgestone Blizzak's (expensive), Yokahoma Guardex's (good for the money), Micheline Actic Alpine's (somewhere in tyhe middle).

My 2 cents.

Cheers,
MB

[This message has been edited by markus (edited September 24, 2000).]
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Old 09-24-2000, 10:39 PM   #5
direwlf
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1999 Impreza 2.5RS
Silverthorn Metallic

Post

Start it off in second, slip out the clutch gently and keep the revs very low. She'll slip a little then it'll catch and off you go.
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Old 09-25-2000, 06:24 AM   #6
Pinochle
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pat + nat

Post

During or after some snowfall, find yourself a nice, empty, not yet paved parking lot and practice some emergency maneuvours. Practice straight line braking, cornering braking, etc. Put yourself in a sliding situation (hand brake is helpful in doing this) and practice regaining control. Be careful though. The bigger the parking lot, the less chance of hitting anything. Beware of light poles and parking blocks. It's good to go surveying for a good parking lot. This way, you know where to go when it's time to do so. Hope this helps.
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Old 09-25-2000, 10:28 AM   #7
DuneHopper
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2000 OBS
White

Exclamation

ABS can be a nightmare in the snow. Sometimes the best way to stop in the snow is to lock the wheels and let a wedge of snow form in front of the tires (pump the brakes to keep steering control). ABS won't let you do this; instead it lets the wheels keep rolling in an almost no grip situation, meaning almost no braking power. I'm considering disabling the ABS during snow.

AWD means nothing without decent tires. I have two bent steel rims to prove it.

Definitely practice, somewhere safe.

btw, I've found that putting some weight in the back of my OBS helps a lot in keeping the back end from sliding out. A big bag of sand works well, and could come in handy if someone gets stuck on the ice (not a Scoobie, of course!)
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Old 09-25-2000, 10:52 AM   #8
ColinL
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'01 Erion CBR 929

Post

the easiest way to disable abs on snow or gravel IMO is one click up on the handbrake. at the stock tension level, there is no dragging.

you can remove the ABS fuse from the panel too.
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Old 09-25-2000, 10:56 AM   #9
RidinLow
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Arctic Gray

Post

I have a switch in one of those blanks next to the foglight button that runs to the ABS fuse, which is conveniently located right behind it. Great for autoxing or for when it snows. If it clears up, just turn it back on again!
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Old 09-25-2000, 04:20 PM   #10
ColinL
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Post

ABS works great for autocross-- no flat spots either.
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Old 09-25-2000, 07:34 PM   #11
AutoXr
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Red

Exclamation

There's a few things that you can do to make your first few winter drives a little less hectic.

1) DO NOT lock up your brakes or spin your tires as much as you may want to. This just heats up your tires which melts the snow around and under them which then turns to ice (if cold enough). Much worse than just about anything else you could do.

2) Snow tires help, but if studded tires are allowed where you live, get a set. They will be louder than snow tires, but the extra grip will be worth it, especially your first winter. Most states that allow them have a "stud season" when studded tires are allowed, keep this in mind.

3) Keep your speed to a reasonable level. You can overdrive the situation faster than you may realize. On the other hand, highway travel shouldn't be a problem unless there's tons of cars around you. If you do find yourself about to become a tailpipe plug in an 18-wheeler, take to the side of the road unless it's blocked. This can save tons-o-cash (and points) if you are able to avoid an accident.

4) Make sure you know the conditions before getting caught off-guard. If it looks wet, it might be black ice.

5) Practicing in an empty parking lot is good, but don't get too carried away. You should be able to tell where your ABS kicks in and how far it takes to stop at a given speed, etc. This will vary based on snow depth, ice, wet, etc. Corners aren't usually a problem unless you're overly agressive.

6) Be patient! It's not usually your fault if you get into an accident unless you're in a hurry.

7) Keep an eye out for all the other idiots on the road (like myself).

It's not too hard to get the hang of it, especially in a Subbie. It's mostly common sense stuff. After a few days of it you'll be having more fun than you can shake a stick at.
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Old 09-25-2000, 07:51 PM   #12
RidinLow
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Arctic Gray

Post

Haven't flat-spotted em yet, & I really think that I can get off the brake & back again to result in shorter distances than the clunky Sube ABS. I think. But I've come to associate my fastest lap times with the smell of burning rubber.
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Old 09-25-2000, 08:09 PM   #13
wistful
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Java Black Pearl

Post

thanx for the responses guys, but if I do get snow tires, what should I go with? Tirerack seems to be raving about the Blizzaks. Kinda pricey though. Or should I just go with a good set of all-seasons? Thanx again.

Don
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Old 09-25-2000, 08:16 PM   #14
RidinLow
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Post

Tire Rack raves about the Blizzaks because that's the tire they push (& probably get incentives for). You'll find that Discount Tire Direct pushes the Yoko Guardex 600 for probably the same reason.

If you don't wanna spend too much money and don't really care about dry/wet performance, get the new Dunlop DS-1's. If you can spend 40 bucks more, get the Michelin Arctic Alpins. If you can spend 80 bucks more, get the Michelin Pilot Alpins if you don't have to contend with deep snow very often and want better dry/wet/snow/ice handling than the RE92's.
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Old 09-25-2000, 08:21 PM   #15
Robin2
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2011 WRX sedan
Plasma Blue

Post

I can't wait for winter... soon again.... Drifting, going sideways... so much fun to be had....

Find an open parking lot and see how the car reacts... but DO NOT slam on the brakes.... and give yourself more than double car lenghts than summer driving.... No Tailgating!!!.... and buy winter tires ... It a must....

And ENJOY!!! It won't be long before you have a blast!

RObin
National Capital Subaru CLub
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Old 09-26-2000, 02:32 PM   #16
vt00rs
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Post

I asked the same question a while back and had the same recommendations for tires. The Pilot Alpins are great, but pricey. Go with the best winter tire you can afford. Depending on the average temperature in the winter you may want to shy away from a really soft snow tire. Average temps above 40 will cut into tread life.

I'm also going with 15" Forester steel wheels. About $40 each. You can increase the aspect ratio to 60 or 65 and go with a 195 width. A little taller and narrower tire usually leads to better snow/ice traction.
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Old 09-26-2000, 06:54 PM   #17
wagonman
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Post

best tip that I can give you,is find a nice gravel road or a large grass field and go play for a while. this will help you to learn what you car will do if you begin to spin/slide. these type of things come in handy when driving in the snow.

Jeff
93' sport wagon
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Old 09-27-2000, 12:03 AM   #18
jogilvie
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Post

Never use all seasons. Get good wet/dry tires for the summer and snow tires for the winter. maybe you could mount the nows on a cheap set of steel rims. Save you the price of the changeover and will stand up to bumps better than aluminum wheels. If you do bend them it's not so much of a loss.

Be very careful of the first snow fall. If it's anything like around here it seems that every one on the road heads for the ditch at the first sign of snow. Stay out of the pack as much as possible. If you're on the road by yourself and cawreful you should have no trouble. It's the other idiots who are out of control who are the danger.
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Old 09-27-2000, 11:00 AM   #19
Puckaveli
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00 2.5RS
Silver

Post

Hey, give me a call at the Goodyear in Stow(330-678-0600). I can get you a nice discount on some snows, plus we are setup with tirerack so we can get their stuff for a little cheaper than a regular customer. I usually work in the evening(5-9) and on Sundays. Just ask for Jud.
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Old 09-27-2000, 11:29 AM   #20
Versun Jetericks
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Location: Reno, Nevada, USA
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1998 Impreza 2.5RS
Black

Talking

I've lived at Lake Tahoe my whole life so, I know about the snow. First thing is, drive slow. Second thing is, drive slow and the third is.....you guessed it drive slow. Also remember that ABS does not help you slow down quicker or better it just allows you to steer while slamming on the brakes (of course this depends on how icy it is). The sube is the best snow car in the world. I've driven through snow that was halfway up my bumper and flying over the hood. Just drive slowly and when you start slidding relax (if that's possible) and don't make any sudden moves. Good luck, you'll need it.
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Old 09-27-2000, 01:18 PM   #21
cakagan
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Member#: 251
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Location: Chicago, IL
Vehicle:
1998 Impreza 2.5 RS
Black

Question

Does anyone have instructions (w/ pics preferrably) of how to wire up an ABS disable switch? I don't know much about the car's electrical system, which wires to look for, etc.

Thanks,
-Kagan
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Old 09-27-2000, 01:35 PM   #22
jaybird
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Post

To further emphasize best tip. Slow Down. I always tell fairweather folks driving in the white stuff for the first time to try to only change one variable at a time and to do it gradually. If braking or gassing don't steer at the same time and vice vera. Slow down before the turn not during. Accelerate after the turn not during. Like stated earlier, snow tires (had Michelins on my 96 Imp Outback)and weight in the rear make huge diff. Once you get some experience head out to the empty parking lot and have at it. AWD & snow can be quite a blast.
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Old 09-27-2000, 02:17 PM   #23
harpy
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I've got Pirelli 210 Snow Sports(I think that's what they're called) and they're great, but my car's a little heavier than an RS so it's hard to say
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Old 09-27-2000, 05:47 PM   #24
inzomniac
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RS: RBP/ WRX: PSM

Talking

I have the blizaks on my 95 L, and it has no problems in the snow... I just practiced on fresh snow around my neighbourhood, quiet in the suburbs. I got my drivers last winter so I leart in the snow in a dodge caravan!!!
the scoobie I got this summer should be much fun, the canadian winters are rough.
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Old 09-27-2000, 10:30 PM   #25
PunksRS
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Smile

I don't agree with the snow tires for our cars unless you live in an area that has snow and ice on the ground ALL winter (Canada/Great Lakes/Dakotas or the mountains)long. I'm a native Coloradoan and along the front range we have occasional snows and then it melts and its dry for days at a time. Snow tires are far from great in the dry. Two sets of tires would be a pain in the butt cause you would be changing them every other week if you wanted to experience some spirited driving on a nice winter(dry)day. I ski a lot and have never had problems in the mountains with all season tires on my Subbies, even in deep snow.

You already have the best accessory for the snow - AWD! There are thousands of Subarus running around here in Colorado and most of them run a good all season tire and get around much better than everyone else anyway.

My advice is just slow down and drive defensively. Remember too, that although you have superior traction, don't get overconfident because it takes just as long to stop whether you have AWD or not. A lot of SUV driving idiots have moved here lately and the worst thing they do is tail gate on slick roads. It amazes me how stupid people are. We had several multicar pileups last winter because people are going 70 mph on icy roads, and following each other by one car length!!!! Then they can't understand why they rear ended someone and were rearended! Several people died in these accidents.

My own personal rules are:

1. Don't speed in the ice and snow.

2. Drive defensively especially being aware of cars immediately around you.

3. Leave lots of distance between you and other cars - don't tailgate and get over when someone starts tailgating you.

4. Run a good all-season tire with good tread.

5. Know the capabilities of your car.

6. Equip your car with the proper emergency equipment and a bag of cat litter!!!

Just my $0.02

Punk



 
 

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