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Old 12-03-2004, 05:47 PM   #1
swrtwagon
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Subaru Stars what is the best "FIRST" mod for stock wrx

what is the best "first" mod for a stock 04 wrx?(e.i. exhaust etc...) my wrx wagon is stock and i want to know what is most practical and what makes a big difference. please list mod and what the mod does for the car, and if you got it done, how much it cost you. thank you.
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Old 12-03-2004, 08:52 PM   #2
WRXWuLf
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do you want more power?

Better handling?

I tend to try and work on where I personally feel deficiencies for my driving style. I started with the handling first since initially I loved the power. If you narrow it down I would love to give you my humble opinion.

WRXWuLf
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Old 12-03-2004, 09:03 PM   #3
DRIVER1
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Tires

Rear sway and endlinks

Springs

Brakes

Reflash or engine mgmt

in that order

Currently you have more power than tires.

Tires will help that but then your suspension will show it's weak underbelly.

Once you've addressed that you'll need better brakes since you'll be carrying more speed.

And finally a nice reflash "Say Cobb stage 2" to get the power at a nice usuable level.
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Old 12-03-2004, 09:38 PM   #4
swrtwagon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WRXWuLf
do you want more power?

Better handling?

I tend to try and work on where I personally feel deficiencies for my driving style. I started with the handling first since initially I loved the power. If you narrow it down I would love to give you my humble opinion.

WRXWuLf

i definitely would like more power. where would i start on the car? after power, what needs to be done for better handling? handling would have to improve to be able to handle the power.
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Old 12-03-2004, 09:41 PM   #5
swrtwagon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRIVER1
Tires

Rear sway and endlinks

Springs

Brakes

Reflash or engine mgmt

in that order

Currently you have more power than tires.

Tires will help that but then your suspension will show it's weak underbelly.

Once you've addressed that you'll need better brakes since you'll be carrying more speed.

And finally a nice reflash "Say Cobb stage 2" to get the power at a nice usuable level.

thanks for the info. much appreciated. could you explain more on what "cobb stage 2" is? i hear alot of subaru owners talking about it but don't really have a clue.
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Old 12-06-2004, 11:33 PM   #6
mch
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driving school
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Old 12-07-2004, 01:53 AM   #7
garie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swrtwagon
thanks for the info. much appreciated. could you explain more on what "cobb stage 2" is? i hear alot of subaru owners talking about it but don't really have a clue.
for the cobb relashes check out www.cobbtuning.com for all the info you need.

i would get tires first, but if you want to wear down ur stockers first then i would get either get an uppipe or gut your stock one, and cobb stage 1 for some additional power right away.

Or if you are patient and wait for a while longer you can get a turboback exhaust first w/ uppipe and then get cobb stage 2 reflash. and get alot more power.

either way get both a relfash and a turboback exhaust eventually for 280ish hp/285 lbs. makes driving the car more fun, less turbo lag, more power.

-gary
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Old 12-07-2004, 08:30 AM   #8
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uppipe
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Old 12-07-2004, 09:31 AM   #9
my t rex
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I think tires, but if you just bought your car and you want to keep them for a few thousand miles deffinetly check out the accessport. Do some searching there is so much info on this forum its sick.
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Old 12-07-2004, 02:20 PM   #10
saint_foo
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Buy new tires (at least one set). Sell the stock RE92s...they suck. If you want good all-seasons, I picked up the Nokian WR from Tirefactory.com. Ask for Ryan and tell him you heard about it through NASIOC.

Cobb Accessport is a plug-n-play thing...costs about $600. Great for hp. Easy to use. Look it up. You basically upload fuel maps that are conservatively tuned (so you shouldn't blow up your motor) yet can free up HP and smooth out acceleration.

You may consider getting a catless DP (downpipe) in conjunction w/ the Accessport. You'll see nice power!

Also if you have a wagon, here's the first mods I did w/ suspension:

Rear sway bar (RSB) - cheap way is to buy an 02/03 sedan RSB which is 20mm. The wagon is 17mm (dunno about 2005 wagons). It should cost b/w free and $50 or so. I got mine for $35 for local pickup. If you can, spend a bit and get a good RSB and good endlinks.

STi lower arm bar (about $195) - tightened up the handling. It no longer felt like a wagon. http://www.subaruwrxparts.com/04wrx-suspension.html
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Old 12-07-2004, 04:05 PM   #11
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Tires, springs ot TBE.
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Old 12-07-2004, 08:28 PM   #12
WRXFan420
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Exhaust, uppipe and downpipe, completely changes the car. Best starting point if you want more power.
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Old 12-10-2004, 09:24 PM   #13
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I would have to disagree with the uppipe and/or even stage 1. You will feel almost NO differance with just an uppipe/stage 1. Sure the #'s will be a little higher from stock, but barely if even noticable in the seat. You will however notice a huge differance with an uppipe and turboback, and even greater with a stage 2 reflash.
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Old 12-13-2004, 05:17 PM   #14
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Since no one else has said it I'm gonna say:

disable DRL's

Purchase short throw shifter.

Ok so that was two mods. But one was free so it doesn't count!
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Old 12-14-2004, 12:50 AM   #15
BlackRex20
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Default Best Bang for Buck

The best way to mod a stock rex (engine-related) is definitely Cobb's Accessport ECU (either Stage 1 or 2 depending on how much power you want to make...260hp vs. 280hp). I would recommend this product not only for it's power and reliability, but also because there have been a lot of problems with the factory 04's and 05's due to their ECU programming. The EPA has pressured Subaru to make their cars more emission friendly, so what they have done is mapped the ECU so that the car runs very lean until around 4-5k RPM, then dumps a bunch of fuel in during the last couple hundred RPM's. I think the fuel flow in % is from around 60% up to 4-5k RPM, then up to 90x% after that. The A/F ratios are also way too lean for how much boost the stock turbo puts out (13.5psi). This results in knock or detonation and can eventually lead to engine damage/failure if not corrected. I have an 04 wrx with a TBE and a GFB BOV, so it's hard to hear if the engine is knocking or not (and even if I can't hear it, it might still be knocking), but I've noticed some of the symptoms that are characteristic to this problem which are:
1) A surging or onset of power at or close to 5k.
2) A bucking at 5k.
3) High EGT's (loosely defined as 1600 degrees or above measured at the up-pipe or down pipe).
4) Detonation anywhere in the RPM range.
5) Feels down on power or lethargic.

I have recently ordered the Cobb Accessport Stage 2 and am installing it in the next month. The re-mapping of the A/F ratio, timing and boost should be fixed so that this problem is non-existent after the re-flash. So if you're looking for more engine performance for not a lot of money, go with Cobb.

If anyone wants more information about this, check out Cobb's forums, then click on "Technical discussions about the WRX" thread, then scroll down and you'll see the "04 and 05 WRX Detonation, Call to Arms" topic.

Sorry for the long post but I find this situation inexcusable by Subaru. If you buy a high performance car like a wrx, the car should come stock without any defects. (especially one as serious as a bad ECU map)
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Old 12-15-2004, 02:42 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mch
driving school
Agreed.

That or my first install was a short throw shifter.
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Old 12-16-2004, 03:52 PM   #17
EnforcerPSU
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This cobb tuning option seems like great investment. I am gonna check it out.
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Old 12-16-2004, 04:02 PM   #18
Huffer
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Driving school gets my vote.
Most people don't know how to drive a turbo effectively anyway...
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Old 12-17-2004, 09:55 AM   #19
Silverboost
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tbe, upipe and utec
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Old 12-17-2004, 10:26 AM   #20
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TIRES, TIRES, TIRES.
Then I'd say an uppipe.

If you wanna be proper about things, you should do it in this order:
Brakes
Suspension
Power
Of course, I couldn't resist doing some power stuff first so I doubt you will be able to either.
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Old 12-28-2004, 04:39 PM   #21
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You are all wrong. The best first mod should be a new shift knob. It's something you use every day, something that will improve the looks of your interior, and it will help the transmission shift more smartly. I just replaced mine with a MOMO and the whole car just drives different. The old stock shift knob has a weak plastic interface with the shift lever which makes shifting sloppy. Get a direct metal to metal connection and you will be good to go. This is also a cheap mod, cheaper than tires, brakes and everything else that was mentioned. And it is something you can install yourself. I think if you dive right in with replacing your exhaust or brakes and you have a bad experience with the installers, it might taint the rest of your experience with your car and you will end up sad and alone living in a van down by the river.

You asked for the best FIRST mod, to me, that's it. All those other things can be done second.
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Old 12-28-2004, 05:08 PM   #22
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I'd say getting a set of 17" wheels and decent rubber would be a start. Improve the looks and handling in one fell swoop.
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Old 01-09-2005, 12:22 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mch
driving school
2nd that
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Old 01-09-2005, 12:28 PM   #24
TheWicked
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3rd that. you can have the fastest car in the owrld at your disposal, but if you cant drive it properly (and there is a difference between driving and commuting) it will be a weapon you can never use. sorta like a gun with no bullets.
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Old 01-17-2005, 05:19 PM   #25
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Suspension mods?
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