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2006 Outback 2.5i (stock) daily driver with custom wheels and Thule rack
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently installed new raised Rallitek springs with KYB Excel-G struts front and rear on my 2006 Outback since the stock rear struts have been shot for a long time. Using full 1" spacer with rear raised spring. I now have a ton of problems that need resolution and very displeased. Here are the issues:

1. Rebound in rear is rocket quick and as I am going down the road, I start getting the seasick feeling and when hitting hard bumps downright hard.
2. Alignment shop can not get rear toe-in to spec; with my old stock springs/struts would align perfectly. Note that I also installed the Whiteline adjustable camber bushings in rear.
3. Front end is constantly pulling to the right when going down the road and I have to keep a lot of force on the steering wheel to stay straight but this may get better with proper alignment.
4. I now have front end "crunching" noise when turning wheel either direction and the car is at rest and while moving backward/forwards--not heard once I am up and running on the road.
5. Shop has assured me that my front and rear suspension is in perfect shape--no broken or bent parts. We do suspect rear link bushing and eccentric may need replacement as it has been seized and needed a good torching to release it.

When there are no bumps and going straight down the road or quickly accelerating off the line, the setup is very well controlled. But can't get nauseated when I drive and family is mad now. I mistakenly understood this setup to be slightly stiffer than stock but now I am far away from where I need to be. I don't toe trailers and never have more than one person in rear one in front and load up for an occasional weekend trip or grocery run. I just wanted tighter handling and to eliminate some mushiness with moderate loads. Obviously raised height has caused some problem in front end as well. But I will say the front does not feel bad.

So need advice. Should I:

1. Keep struts and go back to factory springs?
2. Keep struts and go to standard height Rallitek?
3. Keep springs and change rear struts to KYB Gen 2?

Now out a lot of money and the car is totally messed up. Any comments or opinions are welcome.
 

Master Caster
馃枻馃挃馃挋 3 Beautiful OBXTs
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Get a proper alignment #1 that will fix the front end tracking. You may need to elongate the top mounting holes and/or add camber bolts upfront as well to get the camber close to spec.

The crunching and popping while turning at rest...you have to figure that out. I suggest that a spring is shifting in a perch, or the spacer is shifting, Possibly the front sway bar is torquing at the wrong angle because of the lift. Typically with off road rigs, you need to get longer endlinks for the sway bars to act properly on the chassis.

Rear alignment issue, you are going to need a lateral link kit for the rear with lifted springs and a spacer. What are up up now 3" over stock? The stock arms do not have the length necessary to get a proper alignment. The rear forward lateral links already have enormous stress on them being pulled at that height.

Now for the rebound issue. This happens all the time in the off-road world. Or it used to. You chose a lifted, HD spring. this spring has a higher spring rate and it reacts with greater force. It is designed to hold the car higher at rest, as well as handle a load. It reacts back very quickly to inputs. The damper (strut/shock) is supposed to slow and dampen those reactions. In the off-road truck world there are all kinds of adjustable dampers, which is the key. The dampers you chose (oem) have no compression or rebound variation. They are calibrated for a stock spring. The Rallitek reacts nothing like stock.

You have alot of work to do to get this thing right if you want to keep this set up. Gen2 rear KYBs are going to help. But lifted springs typically have terrible ride quality and adjustable dampers are usually their only fix to dial in the ride. I would suggest dropping 200lbs in the cargo area will help...the front may want to bounce around then...

I feel for ya...

Where are you located anyway?
 

Premium Member
2006 Outback 2.5i (stock) daily driver with custom wheels and Thule rack
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32 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the advice. I talked to Rallitek and they claim the rear can be brought in with stock links and the lifted spring but I don't buy it. I saw the adjustable links but don't like the setup enough to spend another $400+ on the kit and don't know where to get longer end links for my sway bars. We installed the adjustable camber bolts on the front so they should help to bring things in. I think the setup is probably doing what it is supposed to and will need the additional mods/parts as you suggest, but it is apparently not going to be suitable for my needs even if I spend the additional bucks to make it right. It did work better when I put 8 solid concrete blocks in the back. So I am making the decision to return to stock height and will address anything wrong with suspension once we get things back down to earth. So I have these choices:

1. Stock height Subaru springs and Gen 3 KYB struts front and rear.
2. Stock height Rallitek springs and Gen 3 KYB struts front and rear but this will probably ride the same way my current setup is and don't want to do this.
3. Stock height Subaru springs and Gen 2 KYB rear with Gen 3 KYB front.

The raised height looks cool but I really don't need it. The car is a daily driver and never goes offroad--just needed to tighten the handling and eliminate the mushiness of the rear. After choosing options 1 or 3 might need to update the front and rear sway bar bushings and end link bushings and call it done. I am located in western MD.
 

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I wonder if there is a rear subframe spacer available, which would help with the rear links. You can still have somewhat of a lift with the standard height springs and 1" strut spacers.

Interesting regarding the cinder blocks. That supports the spring rate theory.

Go with Gen2 dampers for sure. I think.
 

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2010 Legacy 3.6R Limited
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I actually just ordered these kits for my 2001, so this thread was interesting to see. I normally have a couple hundred pounds of stereo gear and tools in the back, so it'll be enlightening to see how it actually goes on mine. Did just get off the phone with a buddy of mine who's big into lifted trucks and stuff and he mentioned something about the style of the Outback sway bar links being similar to those on a GM truck chassis and maybe trying to fit a set of those in, as they'd be cheaper than getting custom ones from RTK, RSD, or something like that.
 

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Did just get off the phone with a buddy of mine who's big into lifted trucks and stuff and he mentioned something about the style of the Outback sway bar links being similar to those on a GM truck chassis and maybe trying to fit a set of those in, as they'd be cheaper than getting custom ones from RTK, RSD, or something like that.
Many aftermarket adjustable links available. Whiteline makes some that are even a cut to fit length. The adjustable rear links Whiteline sells for street cars can easily work on the front. The cut to fit option will easily work on the rear.

I will also tell you that many of the folks who lift the Gen3 with lifted springs for actual off-roading, they remove their sway bars. (we have some hard core XRT members) The lifted springs are stiff enough and running the sway bar is too much. My Jeep XJ was like this. The Rusty's HD lift was stiff enough it did not need sway bars on the street or highway. When weighted off-road...there was enough flex to articulate.
 

Premium Member
2006 Outback 2.5i (stock) daily driver with custom wheels and Thule rack
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32 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
One other question....if I remove the rear sway bar and use with the lifted Ralliteks and Gen 3 strut, will it dampen or eliminate the super quick rebounding? Right now the rear sway bar is still attached with the factory end links stretched to their limits.
 

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Hmm... following with interest.

I just assembled the same thing for my gen4 ('12 3.6R). New Excel-gs at all four corners, with Rallitek springs...their new no-lift load spring in front and lift/load for the rear.

Struts are built but not installed. My plan is to add ADF lift once I know where I've ended up with just the springs. Add maybe 2"f/1"r?
 

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One other question....if I remove the rear sway bar and use with the lifted Ralliteks and Gen 3 strut, will it dampen or eliminate the super quick rebounding? Right now the rear sway bar is still attached with the factory end links stretched to their limits.
Sorry I dropped this....My bad.

The rear sway bar angled way down is definitely part of the problem. It is applying forces incorrectly. Disconnect it for now, and source some Whiteline cut to length links for the rear.
 

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2006 Outback 2.5i (stock) daily driver with custom wheels and Thule rack
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks. I am on my way back to stock springs with the new Excel G struts. My family has permanently disowned me until I fix it. Had I gotten the stock height springs might have been a whole different experience, but the raised ones did not work out for me since I did not plan to spend the additional money to provide adjustable links and longer sway bar links to make it work. In hindsight I think the springs would be great if you go offroad or have lots of extra weight in the back at all times which we will not. I will have this near new set of raised springs (50 miles on them) for sale soon.
 

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Thanks. I am on my way back to stock springs with the new Excel G struts. My family has permanently disowned me until I fix it. Had I gotten the stock height springs might have been a whole different experience, but the raised ones did not work out for me since I did not plan to spend the additional money to provide adjustable links and longer sway bar links to make it work. In hindsight I think the springs would be great if you go offroad or have lots of extra weight in the back at all times which we will not. I will have this near new set of raised springs (50 miles on them) for sale soon.
They are great for really modified, big tire rigs. Then those guys pull the sway bars completely.
 

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So, mine got installed over the last couple days...

This is for the 2012 gen4 so maybe apples and oranges, but my experience was pretty different.

I used Rallitek springs, Excel-g dampers, and Subaru everything else (group-n tophats, spring seats, etc). I paid a shop to assemble them into struts, then DIYed the strut swap using the factory service manual as a guide.

Install was simple. OEM endlinks were plenty long. I marked the eccentrics and to the naked eye, the alignment is not far off at all after reassembly. Tracks well, no untoward noises.

After 50mi./half-day of settling, lift is 5/8" front, 1" rear. Ride is fantastic...planted on the pavement, totally relaxed on a bit of fast gravel.
 

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2007 OBXT Limited
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So, mine got installed over the last couple days...

This is for the 2012 gen4 so maybe apples and oranges, but my experience was pretty different.

I used Rallitek springs, Excel-g dampers, and Subaru everything else (group-n tophats, spring seats, etc). I paid a shop to assemble them into struts, then DIYed the strut swap using the factory service manual as a guide.

Install was simple. OEM endlinks were plenty long. I marked the eccentrics and to the naked eye, the alignment is not far off at all after reassembly. Tracks well, no untoward noises.

After 50mi./half-day of settling, lift is 5/8" front, 1" rear. Ride is fantastic...planted on the pavement, totally relaxed on a bit of fast gravel.
Did you use the raised springs or OE height springs with spacers?
 

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I just did a similar lift to the OP this past Friday, and have maybe 25 miles on it. 2007 Outback 3.0, Ralli-tek 1" front lift spacers, 1/2" in the rear with their 1" lift HD springs. Struts and hats are about 15 months and 15k miles old, they were replaced right before I bought the car. I hated how soft the rear of the car was especially, wanted a lift, and will be hauling a lot of traveling gear and the occasional small trailer around, so I wanted the HD springs for this. In the little bit I drove it, I can say it is a vast improvement in ride as far as personal preference goes. I imagine it should be even better once it is aligned. I should add that both lower links and the upper link has all been changed over to Megan racing adjustable bars, and Whiteline bushings throughout the entire rear of the car.

After reading through this thread, I may consider what you said traildog, and do some extended links on the sway bar if it gets bouncy. Doing a bunch of traveling this week and next, (approx. 2k miles) so I'll have plenty of seat time in varying road conditions to see how it feels.

On a side note, my car has stock wheels, and the stock size 225/55/17 michelins on it, with 20mm front spacer and 25mm rear. The tires sit nicely in the wheel well now, visually, but I have a bit of rubbing which you would expect. Is anyone running a similar combination that went up to maybe a 215/60 or 215/65 that has no rubbing anymore?
 

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2005 OBXT Limited, VF37, STI intake, 5MT
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Thanks. I am on my way back to stock springs with the new Excel G struts. My family has permanently disowned me until I fix it.
I understand this feeling.. not great, but at least you get control of the radio...

But the issue is the suspension is now SO stiff and outside of its designed range of motion, you are experiencing these problems. The TOTAL lift is near 3" like @traildogck mentioned earlier.

Taking out the spacers in the rear will help alleviate some of the issue, but any lift over 2.5" or so will require subframe spacers, adjustable toe links, or trailing arm drop brackets to re-center the knuckle.

To keep the "tighter than factory" feel, keep the Gen2 KYB, new stock springs (or OE height Rallitek). new OE is about $55/side if you shop around. I'd look into the 16mm sway bar from 08+ STI and 09+ WRX hatch (and 11+ Foz/Imp) to help the rear end plant.
 

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Anyone who is getting rubbing, something needs to change. Wheel offset, or perch height. Rubbing at full compression on a wheel liner is not a big deal. But rubbing that prevents compression is.

My comments on the bar level and end links is valid, but only after other issues are dealt with. Otherwise the scenario I outline doesn't come into play.
 
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