Subaru Outback Forums banner

1561 - 1580 of 1595 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
576 Posts
My new to me 2005 2.5i has leaking and weak struts.

And after pouring over all the suspension threads and the ghostwalking one in particular, here is what I have come up with as a plan:

1. New KYB Excel-G struts all around. 04 in back, unsure of whether 04 or 05 in front.
2. New top hats all around, either KYB or Moog.
3. Check all the rear bushings. If the RFLL bushings are good, then do the WL camber bushing kit. If the RFLL bushings are shot then the MR RFLLs.
4. Alignment to the TSB specs with 100 pounds of weight, full tank of fuel and my normal weight of tools in the back. Should come to a bit over 200 LBS total.
5. Sway bar bushings and brackets from CKE SSP.

Here's one of my stumbling points. I read everything about Jon_slider and not mixing struts from different years and take that with a grain of salt. I have built Mustangs for Autocross and Drag racing with adjustable suspension, I have built an Off-road Jeep CJ, and have owned and driven Subarus for over 30 years, so I am not new to mix and match for my tastes. So I am trying to decide which would work better for me, 04 or 05 struts in front. I believe it was @traildogck that stated the 04 and 05 front struts were valved the same. I can't find any online evidence that has that info. On KYBs website it just gives compressed and extended lengths, which are just a bit different. So my main question is, are they in fact valved the same, and if so then it would make sense to stick with the 05 front struts.

My other question then to @traildogck in particular is..... Which Firestone do you have your alignments done at and who are the guys you have trained? I am in the greater Denver area, south Littleton, and would be up for travel to your guys since you have them broke in already. I will of course be purchasing the lifetime alignment as I have on all my Soobies.

Thanks in advance for everyones help, Bob
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
15,847 Posts
@BTIBob I don't think it was me regarding the differences in front dampers. I will say that when I did rear '04KYB and King Rear Springs, the Gen3 fronts felt out of balance. Remember, King Springs, they are stiff.

On to Firestone. I use 104th and Federal. They actually have a reputation with some of the ho rodders and racers I have met. It's not so much that I have them trained, Richard just knows my cars and knows how to work with aftermarket stuff. The most important thing they let me do is see the settings. I get to see "before" and discuss where I want "after" to be. I am usually requesting my alignments to be out of spec (more negative camber than stock. allowances) They will also do this for me. If you end up with aftermarket adjustable links I would schedule the alignment when Richard is working.

However, this location is well known for alignments.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
576 Posts
@BTIBob I don't think it was me regarding the differences in front dampers. I will say that when I did rear '04KYB and King Rear Springs, the Gen3 fronts felt out of balance. Remember, King Springs, they are stiff.

On to Firestone. I use 104th and Federal. They actually have a reputation with some of the ho rodders and racers I have met. It's not so much that I have them trained, Richard just knows my cars and knows how to work with aftermarket stuff. The most important thing they let me do is see the settings. I get to see "before" and discuss where I want "after" to be. I am usually requesting my alignments to be out of spec (more negative camber than stock. allowances) They will also do this for me. If you end up with aftermarket adjustable links I would schedule the alignment when Richard is working.

However, this location is well known for alignments.
Thanks so much.

I have ordered 04 specific KYB Excel-G struts all the way around, new Moog top hats, KYB boot kits and the MR RFLLs for a grand total of $615.00.

I will get all this installed, purchase a Firestone lifetime alignment and more than likely get a preliminary alignment done at the Firestone just a couple miles from me, then make an appointment for Richard to do a good dial in.

One last question for @traildogck..... What is the target specs I should be shooting for in the rear? I have the TSB, but of course it has a range to shoot for. I trust your judgement as you have so much more experience in this. I will also need to get with you to purchase some FSB bushings and the RSB bushing and strap kit.

Thanks so much for your help, Bob
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
I'm leaning towards getting the RalliTEK overload springs (0 front 0.4" rear) with 05 KYB struts. 18% stiffer doesn't sound too bad for street driving unloaded.

I haven't ordered the parts for that yet, but I have ordered new rear front lateral links. I also ordered a new rear front differential brace (the one that also doesn't have replaceable bushings) because one of them is leaking oil.

Does anyone know the torque specs for all of those bolts? Also, am I'm going to want to have the suspension loaded or unloaded when taking out the bolts / replacing the links / tightening the bolts?

Thanks guys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
576 Posts
Struts installed and alignment done.

The ride is certainly more firm, not one bit of excessive rebound, and can feel most every bump. At the same time it is not as stiff as my 95 Legacy with the Forester struts on it. I am happy with the ride quality. It is right in between the mushy feel it had and the stiffness of my 95 Legacy. That is exactly the ride I was hoping for!

I gained 1/2" of height in the front and rear overall with the 04 struts all the way around. That was an added bonus. Will see if that changes as the struts break in, although I don't think it will. I do believe the ride will lose just a bit of the firmness as they break in.

Had the initial alignment done at the Firestone 2 miles from me and was present for the whole process. He got it very close to where I wanted it, close enough that it won't wear tires and it tracks very well. I will make an appointment with Richard at the 104th and Federal Firestone in 2-4 weeks after the struts settle in a bit and get it dialed in exactly. I will say the MR RFLLs certainly help the process, especially when the factory rear toe adjustment on the right side was semi-frozen. I may be purchasing the MR RRLLs in the near future.

Next up is the CKP SSP sway bar bushings front and rear!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
I also just had 2004 struts installed all around with new strut mounts on my 2008 H6. In addition I have beefed up sway bars and links front and back, as well as rallitek overload springs in the rear. The 2004 struts were by far the most dramatic improvement to the handling of the car. Fantastic!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
Driving the H6 today with the new 2004 spec KYBs in place, it feels like the suspension is as firm as my wife's Infiniti G37. Even with the thicker sway bars and rear overload springs, it is not too extreme. Turn in is very quick, and the old rear end bounce with potholes is gone. Cornering is flat, no body roll. Amazing what the 2004 struts/shocks do for this vehicle. It does kind of boggle the mind how badly the Subaru engineers screwed up the damper settings on the stock version of this car. It is a totally different animal with the '04 struts/shocks, much more sporty. Perhaps it would be worse off road, but I don't go off road all that much, and I netted myself 1/2 more ground clearance with the new struts anyway.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
I have mevotech LCAs on my H6 as well. Basically replaced almost everything with a bushing in my suspension. They are excellent and it looks like a Spec B underneath.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
388 Posts
Did y'all who did this strut swap get struts with springs included? I had all 4 springs and struts replaced 2 years ago, but am really interested in what the KYB '04 struts in combination with the Mevotech LCA's and @traildogck 's sway bar bushings will do for my 06 OB sedan. I may just do the front struts for now tho. Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
I used the stock H6 springs up front and the rallitek overload springs in the rear. The H6 springs are reportedly a bit stiffer than the H4 front springs. Don't know how they'd work on an H4.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Hi All,

Can you confirm that this works for a 2008 Outback 2.5L SOHC (Non Turbo):

Rear:
KYB GR-2/Excel-G 2002.5-2004 dampers
RallITEK Overload Springs and Spacers (2005-2009) (1.4" lift)
KYB Mounts

Front:
KYB GR-2/Excel-G 2005-2009 struts
King Springs (Raised Coil) KSFR-51
Subtle Solutions (05-09) Nose Dive Spacers (Aluminum) Legacy (1" Lift)
KYB Mounts

Also, a question below:
The front spacers state: "Must remove stock M8 top hat studs to install these."
What does this mean?
I thought the spacers just plop on somewhere.

Thank you
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
164 Posts
Same WL, in the shorten form. They are not worn out, the ball and socket are still tight. I am going to continue to run them and periodically inject grease into the boot through the tears. I think they should be expected to last similar to stock IMPO. I am going to get my monies worth out of them. Besides I need them until I can either source some OEM LGT rear end-links or another aftermarket designed for a lower car.
Sorry, moved to Seattle the last couple of months and have been away from the forum. My WL end link ball/socket had same tightness issue as TD, but no tears in the boot. I am still using them and after putting in additional washers to make the connection as perpendicular as possible, no more squeaks, even after 3 months.

Btw, the drive from SF up to Seattle was beautiful and smooth. Spam Musubi has 13 years and 150k miles on it and is still going strong!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
I'm getting ready to do a suspension overhaul on a new-to-me 2008 Outback xt and would like to replace the struts as a whole assembly in order to make installation faster. I am thinking:

0.4" Overload Rallitek rear springs
0" Rallitek front springs
KYB Struts
Moog swaybar end links F+R
New boots/bump stops/mounts F+R
Possibly swap the LCA with the mevotech aluminum one while I'm in there

I did a bunch of searching here but a few questions still remain:

1. The rear strut mounts all say "does not come with bearing". I can't seem to find the bearing anywhere - is my only option to swap it from the old strut assembly?

2. Any recommendations on the bump stops+boots? I saw a few folks indicate that the Moog Bumpstops are too short and that the KYB part numbers are tricky.

3. I notice there's a zerk fitting for grease on the Moog end links. Do they come pregreased? How often should I be regreasing it?

Any other advice appreciated, thanks in advance!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
15,847 Posts
I notice there's a zerk fitting for grease on the Moog end links. Do they come pregreased? How often should I be regreasing it?
They are greased with an assembly grease, the boot is not packed. Just the ball and socket is greased as part of the assembly and shelf life thing. Keep the raw metal from rusting on the shelf in humid climates. But it's not enough for a working joint long term. Especially the Mevotech sealed. Peal back that boot and grease it or use a syringe under the lip. There is a thread about that.

BTW, I saw you commented on my "Weapons" thread. You may want to check this out...I make a few things you might be interested in.

https://www.subaruoutback.org/forums/65-parts-accessories-performance/458146-subaru-specialty-products-tdck-cke-ssp.html

Bushing and bracket upgrade kits.



Rear sway bar reinforcement brackets.



Oh, and if your car is 5EAT, then you want one of these.



Don't buy the Rallitek insert, I'm a better value and USA produced by me, by hand ... or locally purchased, USA manufactured materials.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
I just did my 08 H6 with mevotech arms, swapped for the moog problem solver ball joints, overload springs front and rear, KYBs, and Rallitek spacers. the hardest part was pulling the OEM balljoint out of the knuckle. get ready to apply a lot of heat, penetrant, force and profanity yelling. I couldnt find new front spring tophats, so I had to pull the front struts apart to salvage the old ones. hand cranked my spring compressors, it took patience but its doable.
 
1561 - 1580 of 1595 Posts
About this Discussion
1.6K Replies
238 Participants
atchipmunk
Subaru Outback Forums
Welcome to the Subaru Outback Owners Forum, we have tons of information about your Subaru Outback, from a Subaru Outback Wiki to customer reviews.
Full Forum Listing
Top