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Old 09-03-2001, 03:51 PM   #1
wac
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Champagne Gold Opal

Thumbs up FYI: cable-to-hydraulic clutch swap (long)

I did a hydraulic clutch conversion on my Outback Sport. The original cable clutch was fine with the stock clutch and pressure plate. But after the ACT clutch kit went in, I've had really bad clutch shudder since day one. The bulk of the problem is that the heavier ACT pressure plate adds too much stress to the high-friction cable mechanism, causing it to bind a lot more. This produces an annoying "ratcheting" action that makes slow-speed driving quite unpleasant. The only way to avoid clutch shudder was to slip the clutch in at over 2500 rpm. A fellow i-Clubber who had the Clutchmasters clutch in his Outback Sport also reported similar issues, in spite of the low-force pressure plate.

I've driven ACT clutches in 2.5RS', and found them to be much easier to modulate than my cable system, as well as requiring less pedal force. And having a shudder-free clutch would make the occasional trip through Boston traffic that much less aggravating.

Based on Mike Shields' advice, I ordered up the parts I needed from a junkyard, and finally had the time and garage space to do it last weekend. List of required parts:
1. Pedal box from 2.5L Impreza or Legacy (brake and clutch pedal, with helper spring).
2. Clutch fork from 2.5L Impreza or Legacy.
3. Clutch master and slave cylinders from 2.5L Impreza or Legacy.
4. Miscellaneous metric nuts and bolts for pedal box and slave cylinder.
5. DOT3/4 brake fluid.

Since the clutch fork also needs to be changed, the motor and tranny has to come apart, similar to a clutch replacement procedure. The clutch fork pivot also needs to be moved, but fortunately it uses the same pivot, and the hole is already there even in the 4-bolt tranny that came with the 2.2L. The hardest part was swapping the pedal box, as there is limited space to work in the driver's footwell (even for a scrawny guy like me). The result is I now have the same clutch setup as the 2.5RS, with the friendly but firm ACT Street Clutch feel that I like so much. The conversion was performed in parallel with other major work done on the car, so I can only estimate total time to be about 5 hours.

If there is interest, I will put together a mini how-to on my website (I didn't take pictures, so it will be mostly text).

-WaC
Wayne
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Old 09-04-2001, 10:12 AM   #2
Darshu
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Wayne- I've heard conflicting things about the clutch in MY98 RSes. Is it a cable or hydraulic clutch? I figured you might know.
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Old 09-04-2001, 01:08 PM   #3
wac
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All EJ25's with manual trannies have the hydraulic clutch. I presume the non-WRX MY02 models have the same clutch system as well.

-WaC
Wayne
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Old 09-04-2001, 03:08 PM   #4
beachbum
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Wayne,

Thanks for that clutch how-to on your site. I printed it out and had a copy with me in the garage when I did my ACT clutch a couple weeks ago. I have a cable clutch too, but I don't have any problems with it. Any idea what could account for the difference? My cable has about 85k on it, so I think if it was a problem with the cable itself, mine would be showing up.

I may be sending you an e-mail asking for more details in the future.

Josh
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Old 09-04-2001, 10:08 PM   #5
wac
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Quote:
Originally posted by beachbum
I have a cable clutch too, but I don't have any problems with it. Any idea what could account for the difference? My cable has about 85k on it, so I think if it was a problem with the cable itself, mine would be showing up.
If it ain't broke...

-WaC
Wayne
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Old 10-26-2002, 09:58 PM   #6
stimpy
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Umm... so how about the how-to? Rather than doing this conversion AND the RS tranny AND the RS rear end all in one weekend, I think I'm going to start off with just a hydraulic clutch conversion.

Do you recall the procedure for this or do I need to hunt down the RS FSM to see how everything sits?

I've been comparing my '96 L to my WRX and I think I kind of see what needs to be changed. We have the master cylinder right at the firewall which then pushes fluid into the slave sitting on the transmission. The slave then pushes on the clutch fork? Is this whole pedal box basically everything under there attaching the brake pedal and the clutch pedal?

When I call up the yard for these things, are they going to give me crap about these hard to get to pieces? If you don't mind me asking, what was your costs for doing this? Do you happen to know what years Legacies this can come off? Any of them with the EJ25 I would assume?

Any other hints/tips? I figure I can manage the seperating the tranny part of things. Besides, this will give me a dry run on the tranny for when I do actually remove the tranny...

Oh, one other thing, how much of this stuff would actually come with an RS tranny? ie: am I going to be paying for extra parts if I do this conversion to hydraulic and then doing the tranny switch?

Thanks a bunch,
-Jon
(stupid ghetto EJ22 5mt synchros...)
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Old 10-26-2002, 10:35 PM   #7
Hawk296
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thanks. This is just the info I was looking for!!
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Old 10-29-2002, 07:04 AM   #8
wac
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Jon, your email was rather terse, so I figured you might have posted something in this forum...

Quote:
Umm... so how about the how-to?
You're the first person to ask for the how-to. I didn't have a digital camera at the time, and it would have been difficult taking pictures of some parts that were really important.

Quote:
Do you recall the procedure for this or do I need to hunt down the RS FSM to see how everything sits?
You don't need the manual to see where things are located. But having a 2.5RS or EJ25 Legacy around for reference can be handy.

Quote:
We have the master cylinder right at the firewall which then pushes fluid into the slave sitting on the transmission. The slave then pushes on the clutch fork? Is this whole pedal box basically everything under there attaching the brake pedal and the clutch pedal?
Yes. You will be reusing your accelerator pedal.

Quote:
When I call up the yard for these things, are they going to give me crap about these hard to get to pieces? If you don't mind me asking, what was your costs for doing this? Do you happen to know what years Legacies this can come off? Any of them with the EJ25 I would assume?
I got mine from F&S Auto. They charged me $50 for the pedal box, $75 for the brake master cylinder (which I didn't ask for and you won't need), and $75 for the clutch master cylinder (including the slave cylinder and clutch hose. I believe it all came from the same Legacy Outback wreck.

Quote:
Oh, one other thing, how much of this stuff would actually come with an RS tranny?
None. You may be lucky to get the pivot and rubber fork boot with the tranny, but I'm quite sure you will need to get a used or new clutch fork and two slave cylinder bolts separately.

-WaC
Wayne
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Old 10-29-2002, 09:36 AM   #9
stimpy
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Thanks Wayne. That helps answer some of my questions. Hopefully I'll be able to tackle this in the next few weeks.

Quote:
You're the first person to ask for the how-to. I didn't have a digital camera at the time, and it would have been difficult taking pictures of some parts that were really important.
I was just asking for a basic idea of the procedure. I don't think I need a really descriptive how-to, just basic locations and procedures for the replacement.

Thanks again,
-Jon
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Old 10-31-2002, 02:48 AM   #10
Kostamojen
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Good stuff! I'd like to see the how-to as well. I'm sure quite a few other L owners would as well, but not to many of them frequent the tranny forum.
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Old 05-15-2003, 07:13 PM   #11
stimpy
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Just ordered my pedal assembly. Cost was $75 for the pedals and $50 for the master cylinder. Wayne's prices are just about spot on. Most yards were unable to locate the pedal assembly although I did get some incredible quotes up until they couldn't find the parts. One place quoted me $50 for the whole setup. In the end, I had to order from www.4subarusuzukikiaparts.com and pay their convenience fees...

I won't be doing the actual install until early July when my WRX drivetrain is all here and I have free time.

-Jon
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Old 05-24-2003, 02:47 PM   #12
stimpy
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Ok Wayne, I need a little more description on some things. I requested the older style pedal assembly, but what I ended up with is the WRX assembly. I've heard conflicting opinions on if this actually fits, so I decided to go ahead and see if it fits. Well, it doesn't. It is possible that the pedal assembly is bent, but it looks like its just a slightly different design. The distance from the upper bolts to the firewall is slightly longer by 1/4". This prevents those upper bolts (they are vertical and bolt into a metal support above the pedals) from bolting in. Does the RS assembly bolt in using all of the bolts or are they also off? It looks to me like this support above the pedals is exactly what the pedal assembly would bolt into.

The other problem with this is a matter of it sitting flush on the firewall. The supports that the hydraulic clutch lever bolts into the firewall and into the master cylinder are not inline with the four bolts that attach the main pedal assembly to the firewall. It is about 1/4" too long and prevents the whole assembly from sitting flat. Again, I am wondering how the RS assembly compares to this.

I have pictures in another thread in the conversions forum if you would like some pictures. http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show...60#post3949260

-Jon

Last edited by stimpy; 05-24-2003 at 03:00 PM.
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Old 04-05-2006, 02:40 AM   #13
XxERMxX
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In turn, will a 2.2 clutch/pressure plate work with a ej25 tranny?
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Old 12-03-2006, 08:46 PM   #14
HellBinder
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everything ive seen is identical in bolt pattern, baja, WRX, 90-94legacy, 2005 legacy, Outbacks, all the same with minor differences being in the large round silver thing on the pedal.
Iam actually doing a 5spd conversion in my RHD 1994 Legacy to a hydraulic trans.
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