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2005 Subaru Outback VDC Limited, currently has: AEM air filter, osram 65w low beams, HIR high beams, and AMICO 5630 smd LED for the map light (6 smds) and reverse lights and cargo light (25 smds), Mo
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I was looking as saw the "Suspension Traps, what NOT to do" and "Shock Absorber-secrets" on YOUTUBE and was wondering a few questions about suspension for a 2005 Subaru outback 3.0 LIM VDC. The car has around 100k miles on it so far for your info. And I hear that suspension needs swapped at around 120k. (I don't know just what I found on the net) What should I look for at 100k maintenance wise. I'm a 22yr old brand new to subarus since I got mine at the end of last summer.
First of all is a stiffer or softer suspension better for offroad? I can't seem to find a concise answer on that issue. I know a stiffer suspension is best for on road performance due to better response etc. But what about offroad? Some say stiffer is better for offroad to soak up bumps...etc and others say softer is better for better traction as all 4 tires will be on the ground. I am confused on what is best. Subaruoutback.org forum has a thing on suspension. here it is: http://www.subaruoutback.org/forums...n/28368-2005-2009-outback-suspension-faq.html
First I will tell that I plan on upgrading (actually downsizing to) to 16" wheels from 17" to fit upsized (the actual upgrade) tires of 235/60-r16 from stock 225/55-r17 which I know will fit from research and have seen on forums people putting that larger size on. This is just to let you know for further discussion in suspension. The reason for bigger tires is better offroad performance. More tread = more traction. But since the tires will be larger in diameter by a little bit I want to put a 1" lift on my Subaru.
The subaruoutback.org forum says on the suspension fact page gives possible suspension upgrades. KYB struts with KING springs and sway bars etc. I was planning on KYB struts and King springs if it better than stock for offroading. And also add a 1" lift from subtle solution (link on page in forum page), but according to your video (Suspension Traps, what NOT to do) adding a 1" lift will affect the angle of the wheel and hurt the sway bar bolt thing and damage the drive shaft boot.
With all this in mind I do now know if stock lifted 1" is better or the "upgraded" suspension with 1" lift is better? What are your thoughts? I definitely don't want to damage, miss align or anything bad to my car. I like my car just want it to be more offroad capable. Thanks for reading and helping me.

The person I sent this too didnt respond so I posted it here.
 

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2001 VDC/SC One of a Kind
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Jon,

No one has the right answer except the one operating the vehicle. It is up to the owner to take in opinion and suggestion to determine what it is they need to accomplish their goal. Sometimes suggestions will be faulty or misinterpreted.

So, to answer your question, read your post. You answered yourself. The dynamics of the suspension are such that movement in the collection of parts at each independent wheel is determined by the type of shock, twin tube or monotube, the size and weight/rate of the spring which would be soft or hard depending on a low or high number, higher being stiffer, the weight of the vehicle and its load, and the type of terrain the vehicle is operated on.

Account needs to be considered in where the vehicle will be operated majority of the time. If you set a car up for off road use, it will be uncomfortable or lose handling characteristics on the highway or city streets. And the opposite is true.

Stiff suspension for the road. Soft, nimble suspension off road. Find the middle for both.

If you are going to go into area that require more ground clearance, modify for the clearance necessary and adjust the shocks/struts/springs accordingly. The manufacturers give you damping rate and spring loads in the information provided in their literature or on web sites. You just have to do the math.

Subaru is one up on you though. If you own an Outback, it is designed to go OUT BACK. And the 3.0 has plenty of power to get there.
 

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I was wondering if you had any updates on this subject or if you found a good setup for yourself. I have just bought a '05 Outback LL Bean 3.0 and want to spend some time camping an going to Baja. Baja has a lot of dirt roads with varying terrain. I have an off road racing background so I understand suspension pretty well, but I can't find any good tech infpo on stock spring rates, aftermarket spring rates from King, valving on KYB or Monroe, CV angles, etc...

Any help finding some good resources would be appreciated.
 

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2013 OB 3.6R (former)
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You may want to talk to Primitive Racing.

A much better forum than this one for such things would be offroadsubarus.com, which is dominated by Australians for a good reason. They used to get dual range MTs there, but the rest is not all that different.

More than a few people have found the Kings way too rough, especially up front. But, given your background you may or may not care.

Personally, if my Outback is to ride like a truck, I would go ahead and get a dedicated off-roader.
 
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