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Old 08-06-2001, 07:07 PM   #1
jImp
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Default How should I begin to modify the RS with $500?

Alright, I want to modify my RS, and I have about $500 to start with. What I want to know is what you'd modify first. Power vs Handling vs Looks? I was thinking about a 18mm rear sway bar, short shifter, and some clear corners? I will eventually turbo the car, so I want to stay away from N/A modifications, or at least have modifications that will work with the turbo. I don't autocross, so I don't think that I'll end up spending much on the suspension, but what would you recommend for a good road setup? I've pushed the car to its limits on tight corners, and I've lost control twice, which has me scared to death of pushing it to the limit again.

Anyways, I'm looking for a big grin factor.
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Old 08-06-2001, 07:15 PM   #2
Tony
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I know you said you don't autox but if you're pushing the car into corners and losing control then you need to autox to learn the limits of the car and how to recover from a spin. Many regions offer novice schools and are usually about $50 and worth every penny of it. The best improvement for a car is usually to upgrade the nut behind the wheel.

As for other modifications it's really up to you. Personally I hold handling above all else so I'd say buy decent tires first. Others will tell you that you need a windshield banner and some clear corners, it's all opinion. If you do turbo it then you will need a good suspension and brakes to handle the higher speeds (preferably installed before you find out you need them).

Just my $0.02.

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Old 08-06-2001, 07:18 PM   #3
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tires and a 20mm rsb

Brian
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Old 08-06-2001, 07:24 PM   #4
jImp
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Racing school looks like a good option that I hadn't thought of.
Any reason that I should go with the 20mm over the 18mm?
Oh yeah the RE-92s are starting to lose their tread.
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Old 08-06-2001, 07:24 PM   #5
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yeah do the sway bar for sure.
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Old 08-06-2001, 07:36 PM   #6
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since you don't wanna spend money on mods that won't be needed on a turbo setup, I would say go for the 20mm sway bar and maybe the STi motor/tranny mounts. As for the tires, just abuse the RE92s alittle to justify buying replacements.

Haig

PS Another useful mod is the Fumoto oil drain valve ($29). www.fumotovalve.com
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Old 08-06-2001, 08:34 PM   #7
Tony
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What is a matter with you people suggesting bigger rear sway bars?!? He's losing control of the car with a 13mm bar!!! Add an 18 or 20mm bar and he's gonna be dead and soon.

Learn to drive the car at the limits in a safe environment like an autox or autox novice school or spend money on clear corners and stereo equipment, etc. Tires are always a good idea regardless.

jImp, I'm really not trying to be mean here, I am really concerned for your safety. A larger rear bar will not only make driving "spiritedly" more dangerous for you but also when you're in a emergency manouver and especially in rain and snow.

Tony
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Old 08-06-2001, 08:59 PM   #8
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I agree, actually try ditching the rear bar,
get a short shifter and bushings (Kartboy's is great, as everyone will tell you)
Then replace your tires when needed...
Later on go for the Ver. 5 or P-1 suspension to give you a larger safety margin for going crazy, I dont think coilovers are for you...
It's ok you spun, many have done it, including myself, just learn from it and learn to control your car safely... that way it wasn't a waste....
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Old 08-06-2001, 09:12 PM   #9
jImp
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Actually, I've spun once in the rain, and once on a dirt road. Never on dry pavement. Both incidents though have still caused me to be more cautious with my turns.
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Old 08-06-2001, 09:43 PM   #10
Tony
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Even without the rear bar the novice school/ autox competition in general will make you a better/safer driver on the road. When I have kids they will be autoxing as soon as they have their license (or before if the region has a Formula Jr. class). It's car control at the limit which, sadly, is never taught in drivers ed.

Tony - Spun my car in the wet too, always learing, always learning. Having a big ego when it comes to driver skill just gets you dead sooner.
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Old 08-06-2001, 10:29 PM   #11
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tires for sure, the stock RE92's are dangerous IMHO. I would add those and a driving school. If you are loosing your car in stock form, you need to learn how to drive better then. Im sorry to be blunt, but its true. Try autocrossing to learn the cars, and your limits. The stock suspension is great to learn on, from there you can tweak it when you find its limitations. A modified Impreza has seriously high limits of grip, if you push to hard, it will bite you.....
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Old 08-06-2001, 10:45 PM   #12
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Good god - people on I-club giving sensible advice *looks over his shoulder to check for the second coming*

*ahem*

I would agree that the best way to spend your $500 is driving lessons.

The 20mm sway bar will up the performance on your car to the level where with your experience you are going to get yourself in a great position to wreck the car.

The reason cars ship here with 13mm bars is that is they are much more forgiving to lift off oversteer. Basically if you some in to a corner a little to hot and mash the brake to bleed off speed - the car will try to swap ends - very close to the limit even too rapid lift of the throttle can be enough to start the transition from understeer to oversteer.

At this point if you don`t know it`s coming / don`t know what to do you are probably going to end up as one more accident report on the subaru insurance record.

If you don`t know what all this means - you should take some lessons before driving your car to the limit.

That would suck as you seem like a fairly decent person so far ;-)

Oh that and I pay too much insurance as it is ;-)

Good luck with the driving lessons - and DO do some autoX - it`s one of the best ways to safely develop your skills as a driver on the cheap. Plus it`s a cracking way to meet more experienced drivers who may ride with you and help and give you free lessons ;-)

Enjoy your car - but do it safely ;-)

Last edited by Uncle_Git; 08-06-2001 at 10:48 PM.
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Old 08-07-2001, 02:12 AM   #13
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tires.
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Old 08-07-2001, 03:05 AM   #14
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Tires and swaybar. I lost control a few times when I was stock, haven't done so since an 18mm bar and some RE730s. When I do push it over the limits now it's easier to get back (that is messing around in a parking lot which can't count as losing control).

JC

P.S. I went to the Russell Racing School at Sears Point and recommend it.
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Old 08-07-2001, 07:47 AM   #15
J Colman
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Go with tires and a short shifter
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Old 08-07-2001, 11:48 AM   #16
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forget racing school, go buy a PS2 and GT3 and play that for a week... Pick an impreza turbo and get used to driving that around LSIR and play for a weekend straight. That will teach you how to handle a car...
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Old 08-07-2001, 12:47 PM   #17
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Quote:
forget racing school, go buy a PS2 and GT3 and play that for a week...
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Old 08-07-2001, 02:48 PM   #18
Darwin
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Driving school is a good idea.

BTW, handling and behavior of the car on stock suspension, 18mm and RE-730's is very solid and predictable, just about perfectly neutral. I'm afraid I'll need a bigger bar when I upgrade my shocks and springs though. =P
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Old 08-07-2001, 06:49 PM   #19
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Darwin,
Your car feel rock solid because you just moved the limit up higher where you don't usually drive it. Push it at the new higher limit and you'll find it's not so forgiving as the stock setup was at the lower limit.

It's discussions like this that I like to bring out this old quote from CAR magazine Kelley came across:
"The Impreza is an enormously dangerous car. Not dangerous as in unstable, unpredictable or prone to bursting into flames. No, an Impreza will not kill you, it will get you to kill yourself. This car is, put simply, almost too good at what it does. Too much for any mortal on (just about) any British road.

Driven fast, the Impreza feels like it’s hoovering itself to the ground, impervious to corners and crests. It feels so normal and stable, that you drive faster to increase the risk quotient somewhat, to get the adrenaline coursing. And then, when the buzz of overtaking helicopters wears off, you notch it up some more. And all the time everything is stable and normal, and CRUNCH…for the only inevitability about an Impreza driven quickly is that if you believe its flattery for a moment, a very heavy impact will be your reward."


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Old 08-07-2001, 11:14 PM   #20
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Don`t mean to sound like an arse ( European a$$ ) but the people telling him to upgrade his car if he is losing it are nuts ;-)

If he can`t handle a stock RS without spinning it the first thing that should be upgraded is the nut that holds the wheel.

Upping the performance of the car just means next time he loses it he will be travelling at a substantially higher speed. This will result in a mangled car and possibly an injured or worse I-clubber.

Neither of which are cool.

Racing lessons will result in a more aware and in control driver who can enjoy the limits of his car in safety. Once you can throw the car around in complete safety as it it`s part of you - then think of upgrades.

In all seriousness the most important performance part of the car is the driver. To finish first you must first finish
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Old 08-08-2001, 01:17 AM   #21
jImp
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Whoa, Whoa! Wait.
I lost control of the car in two separate incidents where the traction of the car was severely reduced.
Once in hard rain on a turn coming over a hill.
The other on an dirt road, kind of like the WRC tracks.
Neither times did I spin out, I've never done that before, but I drifted the car to the point where I was very uncomfortable. Both incidents weren't in places with many cars (especially the dirt road) and the thing that I learned was that the car can be very scary when it loses traction. Oh yeah, I'm also running on stock RE 92s.

The RS handles better than anything that I've ever driven before, and on DRY pavement, I've felt the car plow through the corners.

Yes, I totally agree with the quote that Tony posted about the Impreza causing the driver to kill themselves, and the "nut" behind the wheel looks to be my first modification. The only problem being that the only local racing/driving school that I've found costs about $950.

The best handling car that I've been in was Larry Ganz's car when he gave me a ride around the block at a local meet. My face when I was in the car My face after riding in the car then

JC, can you tell me some more about that racing school?
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Old 08-08-2001, 01:27 AM   #22
01 Black RS
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from the sounds of your driving style, sounds like tires would be a good choice for you.
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Old 08-08-2001, 09:31 AM   #23
Tony
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jImp,
Here's some info for you. Your local SCCA club (they do autoxes and track days) is at www.coloradoscca.org. They held a novice school in the spring but just going to autox events will do you a world of good, they seem to have a pretty good novice program there. Just register as a novice and most SCCA chapters have instructors available to give you pointers, etc.

Your other good option is to do driver school events at local race tracks. I tried searching for Second Creek's website but the link wasn't working for some reason. Anyways, check the websites for local tracks and they will show what driver schools they are running. Usually put on by a local racing or enthusiast club. They are usually about $200/day. So you could do two full days of on track instruction and still have money left over (two days is a lot BTW).

Anyways, I did this in about 5 minutes of searching the web and I know next to nothing about CO. Ask your local i-clubbers about where they autox and if anyone has gone to some driver schools and I bet you'll get a crapload of info. Also the www.coloradoscca.org site has it's own message board, a post there should help out too.

Tony
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