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Old 11-06-2000, 01:27 AM   #1
markus
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Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: W. Canada
Location: St. Albert, AB, Canada
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2004 STi
White on Gold

Thumbs up Whiteline Rear Suspension Pieces

Just a repost of what I put in the vancouver/Canada Forums
MB


Hello All,

I installed my Whiteline 18-22mm adjustable bar on Friday but didn't have enough time to post my thoughts here since I left for a camping trip with my son on the weekend. Came back this afternoon and this is the first time on the computer.

Anyway, back on topic. In addition to the bar, I installed the Whiteline Rear Swaybar mounts, and the Whiteline Rear End Links. The quality of the Whiteline parts are unsurpassed. The stock FHI rear sway bar, rear sway bar mounts, bushings, and end links are a joke. We're talkin' strictly built for economy here. The biggest joke of all is the actual FHI rear sway bar. It looks like a piece of paper clip wire in comparison to the Whitline bar.

It took me a good two hours with the car on a pair of ramps and and old piece of carpet keeping my ass from my freezing cold driveway (it was about 5C that morning). The hardest part was taking one of the old sway bar mounts off of the passenger side and putting the new mount on, but the whole shebang can be done by anyone that understands which end of the wrench to use (i.e. a complete idiot). I set it for the mild 18mm since I knew that winter and lots of snow were coming.

Once everything was installed, I took the car for a drive immediately.



I was in complete shock!!!!

How can a relativelty cheap mod make such a HUGE difference in the car??? I still can't believe what a difference it makes. Before I had the Impreza, I drove a Ford Taurus (which understeered like you wouldn't believe)!!! When I switched to the Impreza I thought..WOW what a great handling car and so little oversteer. Well, everything is relative, and the stock Impreza RS doesn't understeer like a Taurus, but let me tell you, the Impreza suspension was NEVER meant to be driven with a 13mm rear sway bar. It was meant for something at least 18mm if not more.

The feel at 18mm is very neutral until the very end where it starts to understeer again. The car corners MUCH flatter and will probably be awesome once I put put my Whiteline progressive rate spings on and bump the bar to the 20mm or 22mm setting. However, my story is not finished. As luck would have it, it started to rain Friday night which turned into our first blizzard by Saturday afternoon. Driving back home on the windblown snow with complimentary frozen rain surface underneath, my first comment would be that RE92's suck (surprise, surprise) followed by...the car still handles very neutrally albeit with a lot less grip on icey/snowy roads. It does respond more qucikly though, so you do have to pay attention at the wheel a little bit more.

I also have the Whiteline STB installed but I honestly have to say I didn't notice any real difference, but I didn't expect it with the soft stock springs/bushings, etc. I'm sure it will make a difference once the stiffer springs/struts/bushings combo are installed. It sure looks awesome though

My final comments; I decided a long time ago that I was going to upgrade my suspension with all the parts from the same manufacturer since the R&D was done to make the pieces fit together as a unit. Once my I have saved enough to buy some adjustable struts, I will be installing my springs along with other various Whiteline goodies. I will keep you all posted.

Mucho thanks to Don Nimi ( http://www.pdm-racing.com/ ) for getting this all together for me at GB prices without the GB wait. I will be buying from Don again (maybe a turbo if he decides to build one...hint, hint).

Cheers,
MB
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Old 11-06-2000, 02:24 AM   #2
ARG
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Rally Blue & Supercharged

Thumbs up

I just installed the Whiteline anti-lift kit and rear swaybar links. What an improvement!!

A very good modification.

ARG
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Old 11-06-2000, 07:28 AM   #3
ravent
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00/+ RS/OBS
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Cool

Markus,

The STB will not be obvious until an extreme drive on a sweeping curve...new bushings will help it also, but it is better. Did you also get the HD mounts for the rear swaybar? If you plan on using the 22mm (in the dry)setting it is advisable.
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Old 11-06-2000, 11:30 AM   #4
markus
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Ravent,

Yes, I did mention that I also installed the HD rear mounts. Pretty much upgraded anything associated with the rear sway bar. After seeing the stock ones when I installed the rear bar, I'm glad I upgraded. What a pathetic joke that whole stock rear sway bar set-up is. Obviously the accountants/lawyers, not the chassis engineers, won that arguement.

Thanks for the heads up on the STB, only had it in for a whole three days before freezing rain & snow showed up. I'm sure once autocrossing starts next spring I'll have a chance to really put the car to the test.

Cheers,
MB
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Old 11-07-2000, 07:54 PM   #5
Jim Gurieff
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Smile

G'day Markus.

That's great feedback, look forward to getting your impressions once the springs are fitted.

Asssuming STB refers to a front strut brace, I just thought I'd throw in some points from our point of view.

There is no such thing as too stiff a chassis. Contemporary roll cage designs in high level motorsport have a lot more to do with chassis stiffening than occupant safety, hence the restrictions on design and complexity. Assuming low mass material is used, the more stiffening and bracing you have, the better the handling potential.

The reason is that it stops the body contributing to the springs and suspension equation through flex and distortion. People will often comment on a change of handling bias toward understeer once a front strut brace has been fitted. This is proof of it doing its job as it raises the effective spring rate at the wheel as a consequence of a huge increase in the effective spring rate of the body.

From this we can conclude that more bracing is needed as we increase spring and roll resistance rates with the bodies rigidity (or lack of) becoming a larger part of the total spring equation. Needless to say, the more mods we make, the more we'd notice the difference with and with out.

Cheers
Jim Gurieff
Whiteline Automotive
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Old 11-07-2000, 08:18 PM   #6
Overtime
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Hi Jim,

Are you all planning on making a rear strut tower bar in the near future? I saw your front one (on Dale Teague's legacy) and I was impressed. And much cheaper than the Japanese brands.

Thanks for any info you can provide.
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Old 11-07-2000, 11:29 PM   #7
Jim Gurieff
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G'day

We've got a rear strut brace on the drawing board to suit a hatch as the sedan does not have as much of a problem due to the parcel tray. The sedan brackets are also quite complicated making it all a little difficult to justify.

I would expect to be able to market something within the next 3 months.

Cheers
Jim
Whiteline
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Old 11-08-2000, 08:15 AM   #8
new2roo
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Can someone offer advice/experiences with a larger bar on the Legacy GT wagon? I measured the stock bar at something like 16mm. How much difference would a larger bar make? How much larger makes sense?
Thanks,
Dave
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Old 11-08-2000, 10:04 AM   #9
gjones
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garnet red

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markus,
Could you explain your statement that you had less grip in the rain/snow with the 18 mm rear sway setting? I was thinking about getting one of these for my MY01, but being in Minnesota, the grip in the white stuff is important to me.

Is this a general side effect of using stiffer sways? When are you feeling the lack of grip? Acceleration, braking or turning?
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Old 11-08-2000, 04:09 PM   #10
markus
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White on Gold

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gjones,

Sorry for the confusion. I was simply making a general comment about the level of available traction on a snowy/icey road as opposed to dry tarmac. Seeing as how I did not want to promote too much oversteer into my vehicle with less available road traction during winter, I simply set the bar at the "softest" setting of 18mm. It will also allow my to "relearn" how the car handles with an obviously higher level of grip that the suspension can now handle (assuming the road conditions will allow me that level of traction).

As you all have no doubt gleaned from my post, I am a BIG fan of this upgrade. I highly recommend it.

FYI, the car handles very well with the bar on the snowy roads. As Jim would no doubt say...No worries Mate!!!

Cheers,
MB
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Old 11-08-2000, 04:32 PM   #11
gjones
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OK, makes sense. Thought I was missing something there.

Thanks for the clarification!
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Old 11-08-2000, 10:22 PM   #12
scoobysport
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Jim,
I was wondering what I can do to prevent the rear sway bar from hitting my exhaust? I found that when I installed the bar, it was about 3/4" away from the edge of my muffler (I have the scoobysport muffler). In the city, there are no problems at all, however, I have driven on a few rally stages as a marshall and was concerned about it hitting. Any suggestions?

Brian
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Old 11-08-2000, 10:59 PM   #13
Jim Gurieff
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Hi,

Can you tell me what rear swaybar part number you have and whether or not you're using standard links?

Jim
Whiteline
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Old 11-09-2000, 11:24 AM   #14
Tim Prudence
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I just installed the front and rear end links and I really like them. Seem to be a very innovative design, that allows removal of all the end link slop, without transmitting any more NVH into the cabin (the huge bushings seem to absorb most of it). The responsiveness of the car is noticeably better, it used to pitch just a little on turn in before the suspension reacted. Now that reaction time is cut down considerably.

Pretty good for what essentially is just two bushings wrapped with a peice of steel (heh someone commented on the cheap looks of the stock endlinks).
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Old 11-09-2000, 12:29 PM   #15
bobski
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I have another question for Jim.

Does Whiteline make springs for the 2000 North American Legacy yet? Dale Teague is in the process of finding out for me, but I might as well get it straight from you.

Thanks

Bob
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Old 11-09-2000, 02:46 PM   #16
Jim Gurieff
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Hi everyone.

Tim, that's a pretty good summary of the links. We designed the concept 8 years ago for use on swaybars for off-road vehicles. Wheel movement restriction was the issue in the lateral plane yet we wanted as direct a connection as possible in the vertical, hence this design.

Its since proven very effective for bars with short arms as it allows the suspension arms to go through a heap of angular change while still remaining very direct on the vertical. (Have a look at the front links with your car jacked off the ground :-) )

I'd like to think that the simplest things are often the best but in this case, the design would not be possible were it not for advances in polyurthane which allowed us to to use what is otherwise an uncaptive position. Secondly, the steel is actually high grade spring steel with a tensile strength higher than some tool steels. It will allow a certain amount of "bending open" for shock loads yet will return to its original position without work hardening or fatigue.

Bob, I'm not sure if the 2000 Legacy is a target vehicle for us yet as the Impreza platform is the performance choise over here. Perhaps you can help me with a little market research? What sort of price do you pay for lowered springs over there? A range of prices for domestic vs imported product would be nice to know. Our weak Aussie$ might make it attractive for us to develop something just for you guys.

Cheers and thanks

Jim
Whiteline
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Old 11-09-2000, 08:53 PM   #17
scoobysport
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Jim,
I've got the 18-22mm rear bar with the polyurethane end links
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Old 11-09-2000, 09:09 PM   #18
gtguy
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Platinum Silver Metallic

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Jim, I can't seem to find out for certain if Whiteline makes springs for my '98 Legacy GT wagon. I have Eibachs now, and the drop was too extreme. I'm looking for something on the order of an inch or less, and people have mentioned your company. What's up?

Kevin
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Old 11-09-2000, 09:40 PM   #19
Jim Gurieff
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Hi everyone.

Brian, the heavy duty mounts bar centreline potiion is slightly ahead of that of the original brackets. This may pivot the bar hoop away from the muffler (if I understand the clearance problem correctly).

Alternatively, you can look at a slight tweak of the link shape to deliver a similar result. That is shorten or lengthen to force bar away from muffler. If you choose this option you'll need to heat up the link to "cherry red" over the area you wish to adjust (remove bushes first of course), then allow to air cool slowly, no quench or laying on to concrete surface. You'll loose the finish but you can then paint to suit.

Kevin, our lowered springs are typically 30-40mm lower than standard so I don't think we can help though we do make heavier rate standard height replacements. Maybe that's an option.

Cheers
Jim Gurieff
Whiteline

PS. Have a good weekend everyone!
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Old 11-20-2000, 06:19 AM   #20
new2roo
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Hi, all,
Have just installed the 18-22mm bar on my MY98 GT wagon. Haven't had a lot of chance to play yet, but like it so far (set on 20 for now - may drop it back to 18 if the snow performance is too hairy.)
A co-worker recommends urethane bushings on the front bar as well, to balance the compliance and make the oversteer/understeer transition more predictable.
Comments? Availability? I haven't seen bushing-only kits anywhere. Would a complete linkage kit make more sense?
Dave
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Old 11-20-2000, 03:58 PM   #21
markus
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White on Gold

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new2roo,

Whiteline also makes front sway bar end links as well as front lower control arm bushings and an anti-lift kit (ALK) which fits on the rear mount of the front lower control arm (please do a searhc on the benefits of the ALK). You may want to consider those pieces as well. I presently have the lower control arm bushings in hand with the ALK on order. I will likely go with the sway bar end links as well. I am unsue if Whiteline has the urethane bushings for a stock front sway bar, but you could always check here and ask:

http://www.pdm-racing.com/

Hope this helps.

Cheers,
MB
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