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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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Discussion Starter #1
I may purchase an OBS for myself - MYs '99-'01 - and plan to do a few suspension mods to make a fun daily driver with the dream of at least trying auto/rallyx.
Given that, in trying to educate myself I have discovered conflicting information about the use of KYB AGX (adjustable) struts. Some folks say they have installed them - evidently with no problem. The catalog (weird downlaod from KYB site) does NOT indicate an AGX for the REAR of the OBS. Other sites are either uncomfortably vague or do not list the OBS.
Of course I plan to begin with a sway bar and wheels/tires but iif AGXs are not an option - what best to go with - I desire minimal drop springs (probably whiteline,eibach or H&R - trying for 1" +/-)
a little stiffer than stock. I have read up on the Koni insertion process for stock struts - anyone have experience with that?
thanx for any input

Carl
1 Lucky Texan
 

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MY12 WRX, MY07 FXT
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Well, Carl. I have not dealt too much with any aftermarket setups for OBS suspensions, especially pre '02. I will say one thing though, I personally have competed in two rallycrosses and I guarantee you the OBS is not a sloth. I placed 6th overall in the first one out of about 27 cars and 3rd of about 22 drivers the second time. And that was against WRX's and STI's. Anyway, I believe my stock setup is fine for rallycross, and competetive in autocross due to the class placement of the OBS ( I believe H class?) So I would lean to say there are better things to concentrate on performance wise than getting an other than stock suspension setup. Now remember, I drive an '02 OBS. I did however put an 17mm rear WRX wagon rear swaybar on and that made an awesome difference in the characteristics of the rear, not so bouncy. Brian
 

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02 OB sport, 2.5, 5MT, WRX seats/catback/rear bar, Hellas, Home Despot CAI and roof rack
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OK, now i'm confused. i thought the vast (.4" more ground clearance per the O-manual) ride height difference of the OBS came from some sort of semi-permanently attached spacers that are either part of the strut top mount or the body right above it, rather than extra-long springs. read something to this effect in a post on this site.

however, Brian's response here seems to indicate that part/all of the difference comes from taller springs. anyone got any ideas on this?

also, anyone have any idea whether the damping on the WRX struts is any more aggressive than that on the OBS struts? how 'bout spring rates?

TIA!

bruce weathers
02 OBS (Faux Rex)
 

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MY12 WRX, MY07 FXT
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Different spring rates and different strut inserts is 95% of the 'heavy duty suspension' that the OBS boasts. That is what I have learned, maybe not 100% but that is what I get our of all the jargon. I have looked into WRX springs which would lower my OBS, whether it be from 'shorter' springs or just the spring rate that prevents the suspension from raising too much.

I have heard about rubber spacers in the past OBS setups I believe, but not for anything newer than '02. Brian
 

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02 OB sport, 2.5, 5MT, WRX seats/catback/rear bar, Hellas, Home Despot CAI and roof rack
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Brian--

are you implying that OBS uses HIGHER lbs/in spring rates than WRX? this would be great, altho if that's case, anyone want to buy the WRX springs i just bought, cheap? but it sounds like you're saying that the height diff comes from the taller springs/struts?

if so, given the relatively minimal ride height difference between OBS and WRX, i'd guess that you could use AGX, Tokicko, or any other WRX struts on OBS with the possible risk of maxing them out on the upper end of travel if you get airborne much....:D i would double check actual travel of my struts 1st, tho, since .4" diff in ground clearance could translate into something more at the struts.

Carl--

no personal experience with the Konis either, but the cutting and threading top of old struts is something any competent machine shop with a lathe can do. but adding that to cost of strut insterts themselves.....!!!!! wishin Bilstein wd make shox for Subs!

this strut business is something of interest not only to car modifyin rallycrossers etc, as we're all gonna have to deal with it some time, ands fact that you're reading this list indicates you may want something better than KYB GR2s when that time comes. and depending onyour float tolerance, this can be as early as 40-50K. hope people will keep us posted on what they've done that did/didn't work. i know of one guy who swapped Forester struts onto an earlier OBS and claims to have gotten almost 3" increase in ride height.

bw
 

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MY12 WRX, MY07 FXT
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No, not higher spring rates I don't think. I had that info once and I just checked 80% of my seven volume shop manual and it didn't designate any difference between the Impreza's suspension. I have read once about the true difference in the design, but I'm at a loss right now.

I think all the components are the same but at different dampening and rates. That's for the springs and strut inserts. And yes, putting WRX springs on your OBS will lower it. Brian
 

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02 OB sport, 2.5, 5MT, WRX seats/catback/rear bar, Hellas, Home Despot CAI and roof rack
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dunno if anyone's interested, but there's a set of all 4 WRX struts and springs on ebay right now; no bids yet and they end in 2 days. guy sez 15K miles. item # is 7914286072.

i have no financial or other interest in these and don't know the seller, just passing along the info in case anyone's interested.

bw
 

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97 OBS
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I just recently put AGXs in my 97 OBS. They are the ones that are sold for the L impreza or the RS. I am not sure what the difference in suspensions is exactly. Though in my research It apears that the OBS springs are the same as the RS springs (pre 02 at least) I dont know for sure whether that is true or not but the AGX's with Group N tops and the stock springs ride quite nicely. It is a bit harsher over rough surfaces..but big bumps arent jarring. Just a bit more vibration so there are alot more rattles. I upgraded the RSB to a 19 mm adjustable one with poly bushings and solid endlinks. I think its the sway bar setup that makes some noise at low speeds over uneven ground..kinda clunk/bump. But overall the car handles really well and the intall was pretty easy. Adjusting the AGXs is very easy..fronts are just under the hood and the backs you can sit next tire and reach up under to the knob. I find 2/4 the most confortable on not so good roads but 3/6 is very nice on good twisties or on the highway where the car feels much more solid, doesnt get pushed around by the wind as much.
 

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02 OB sport, 2.5, 5MT, WRX seats/catback/rear bar, Hellas, Home Despot CAI and roof rack
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pardon my stupidity, but what are "Group N tops"? some sort of trick upper strut mount?
 

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97 OBS
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the group N tops are the STi Group N bits. they are exactly the same as the stock ones, just with harder rubber, I believe they use the exact same molds as the bits put in the "STI". The Group N designation simply means that it falls within whatever specs there are for Group N cars for rally competition. For you and I it means better parts...mostly bushings and such...that are pretty cheap ( tops were comprabable to stock ones) and should fit perfectly as they are basically stock parts.
 

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02 OB sport, 2.5, 5MT, WRX seats/catback/rear bar, Hellas, Home Despot CAI and roof rack
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gracias, licenciado. where'd you get em? strut replacement is a way off so time to start accumulating the stuff soon...does this make me a geek or what?
 

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I got the Tops from Racecomp engineering, I also got a Cusco 19mm adjustable sway bar. More expensive than a wrx one but the adjustable is nice as I plan on doing some auto Xing and want to be able to make it really stiff

http://racecompengineering.com/product-susp3.htm

I got the struts from

Performance Parts Store

Best price I found by a bit.


Since I was going to take the brake lines off anyway I got Goodrich SS lines as well as Whiteline solid endlinks and steering bushings from PDM Racing

Even though they were in canada the shipping was pretty cheap. The service from all of the places I dealt with was great. I ordered everything on a wens and had it all by thurs of the next week.
 
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