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Old 10-29-2010, 12:52 PM   #1
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 164
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Philly suburbs
2008 Exige S240

Default Hrrrm. Steering rack replacement?

I've got a '97LGT with a complete WRX engine/trans swap. As such, the front cross member is front an Impreza turbo. I believe (still have to confirm) that my original Legacy steering rack was used in the conversion. Anyhow, while under the car to replace an O2 sensor, I noticed that the boots on both sides of the rack were completely ripped open. I'm guessing the death clock has started for my steering rack.

I've read that WRX units, or even STi units will work with some minor modifications regarding the pinion gear. However, do Forester racks work too? Specifically a newer 2009 Forester rack? A buddy has one leftover from his swap so it would be ideal, except I have no idea if they are interchangeable.

Since I want to keep things simple and non modify another rack to fit, where is a good place to source a rebuilt rack? Any ideas on cost? Or how long/hard it is to change out? I'm hoping I don't need to remove the engine/trans to get everything out...

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Old 10-29-2010, 04:54 PM   #2
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 51432
Join Date: Dec 2003
Chapter/Region: Tri-State

you dont need to remove the engine. if you do use a different rack, at most you may have use your model and year tierods. other than that, the rack should bolt in. (im not 100% sure about the 09 forester as things might have changed for the newer models)
hopefully someone else can chime in and confirm.
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Old 10-30-2010, 12:03 AM   #3
Scooby Guru
Member#: 4021
Join Date: Feb 2001
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Natick, MA USA
1999 Legacy GT Ltd
Quick Silver Metallic


Most any local Auto parts store can order you a completely rebuilt steering rack for your exact make / model year 1997 Legacy GT that will fit exactly the same as the old one.

Prices vary significantly depending on which company you order the rack from, however.

A "brand new" steering rack from a Subaru Dealer would likely run you say ~ $ 600.00 while a cheaply rebuilt unit might run you ~ $235.00. Most local mechanics have learned from experience which brands of rebuilt steering racks are more reliable and less costly than others. Since it is such a bitch to replace a steering rack you will likely want to source a good one, and not be too interested in the costs of doing so. While you are at it you could pick up a set of "Whiteline" Poly steering rack bushings that will greatly improve steering response and "feel".
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:19 PM   #4
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 164
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Philly suburbs
2008 Exige S240


Thanks, I'll have to investigate OEM vs. a rebuilt unit to see if it is worth it. Since I just bought a fun weekend car, I want the Legacy to last for quite a few more years so I'm not going to cheap out.
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