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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just wanted to see if there's a minimal lift that'll allow us to run taller tires for clearance in snow and mud. My friend suggested Forrester springs I think?

What sort of lift will allow us to run which 16" tires? I think I've got 215/60/16's on there now but 225's should also fit stock.

225/60 they are saying is about 26.6" (just took 1 tire as an example).
215/65 is 27"
215/75 is ??
225/70 is 28.4"

thanks...
 

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'05 Outback 2.5i - 5-Spd Manual (Now with a new Family)
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The Forester Spring option is for the two generation older model Outback ('95-'98/'99 I believe?) that uses struts in the rear, as the Forester does. There is also the trick of using Baja Springs for the earlier '00-'04 Outbacks, but adapting them for use on the '05-'09 Outbacks has not been done yet that I am aware of, and apparently would require the use of earlier model year top hats as the springs have a different trailing edge.

I've been considering lifting mine one way or another, so you might want to read my ramblings in this thread for some additional details..

You can get a one inch lift with either King Springs or Subtle Solutions Lift 'blocks'.

As for tires, a 215/65-16 will fit, even without a lift. Keep in mind that the Outback Models that came with 225/55-17's actually had a taller tire stock at 26.9" tall, so a 27" tall tire is not an issue at all.

Because of the wheelwell size of the '05 Outback though, the biggest tire that seams to fit is about 27.6" tall (a 225/60-17 -- The equivalent 16" size would be a 225/65-16. There are tires available in this size, but nothing to my particular liking - Okay, there was a Nokian, but the load range was way too high at 112), beyond that you would need alot of lift, not just a little to make a larger tire fit.

A 215/70-16 tire (28" tall) would be tight, but should work with a small lift. There was a member that just sold a set of 16" wheels with 215/70-16 Yokohama Geolandar A/T-S tires recently, and he said that they fit with minimal rubbing on his stock Outback. I'm a bit concerned that they may have rubbed a bit more than minimally though, but trying to find out some additional info as I might be interested int his size if it would work with a small lift..

One last thing. If you haven't already, you should read through the 2005-2009 Outback Suspension FAQ as well..
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I know there's some snow tires they say measure around 27.9" for that size. There is a Size: 215/70R16 General Altimax.. I wonder if that'd fit. Obviously thereis some point where they will rub and another 1/4" and they won't... maybe too dependent on the load. I'm guessing this is front rub only. And is it when you turn the tire, or when you hit a bump or what.

I really have no interest in a tire that rubs, but am interested in running the tallest (and skinniest) tire that'll fit properly with no rubbing. 225/65-16 may be my next choice, but I'd prefer a 215/70-16. granted that 225 vs 215 is less than half an inch.

There will be some differences by brand and tread, etc. So a 215/70/16 like those Geolanders the guy had could be a bit bigger than the above General Altimax's.

We run snow tires 6 months out of the year here and those are my biggest concern. Cost is a factor too. The Generals are pretty darn cheap. I don;t doubt they work decently in the snow (going for $78 a piece with discount right now! plus shipping).

I guess even f I go 215/65, I'm gaining almost half inch of clearance. That isn't bad.
 

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2005 OBW 2.5i, 2010 MB R350 Diesel, 1991 Toyota MR2 | suspension & braking enthusiast
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Consider adding lower camber bolts to complement the OEM upper bolts to get a little extra clearance. The MOOG brand only cost $12 each at Rockauto.com. DIY here: http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1590221

Even a -1.0° camber change corresponds to about 1/4" clearance between the tire and the fender.

If you rub on the inner suspension components, then you can safely add a universal 3mm wheel spacer without having to get longer wheel studs.
http://www.m2tuning.com/wheel_spacer5lug.asp Typically non-hubcentric 3mm wheel spacers work OK and don't add vibration because there is still a small lip on the hub to seat the wheel properly. If you need thicker than 3mm, you HAVE to get longer wheel studs since the lug nuts won't have enough threads to meet safety spec. It is also recommended to get Subaru-specific hub-centric wheel spacers to avoid any vibration issues.
 

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I know there's some snow tires they say measure around 27.9" for that size. There is a Size: 215/70R16 General Altimax.. I wonder if that'd fit. Obviously thereis some point where they will rub and another 1/4" and they won't... maybe too dependent on the load. I'm guessing this is front rub only. And is it when you turn the tire, or when you hit a bump or what.
The clearance issues seem to be both front and rear, and are as much related to the size of the wheel well openings as much as anything, but obviously there is more potential for rub at the front, since you have to deal with the arch of the wheels as they turn in combination with suspension movement..

I really have no interest in a tire that rubs, but am interested in running the tallest (and skinniest) tire that'll fit properly with no rubbing.
Unless you are prepared to make other modifications, I'd say that the largest tire you are going to be safe with is the 215/65-16 then..

225/65-16 may be my next choice, but I'd prefer a 215/70-16. granted that 225 vs 215 is less than half an inch.

There will be some differences by brand and tread, etc. So a 215/70/16 like those Geolanders the guy had could be a bit bigger than the above General Altimax's.
If you have no tolerance for rub, either tire size is going to be pushing it, you might be okay, or you may end up with some minor rubbing. As noted, the same 'size' tire varies in actual dimensions between makes and models, so one may rub while another may not...

I guess even f I go 215/65, I'm gaining almost half inch of clearance. That isn't bad.
Well, you are gaining almost a half an inch of tire diameter, or almost a quarter of an inch of clearance..


Consider adding lower camber bolts to complement the OEM upper bolts to get a little extra clearance. The MOOG brand only cost $12 each at Rockauto.com

Even a -1.0° camber change corresponds to about 1/4" clearance at the fender.
I don't know that the top fender lip is the issue. I think the clearance issues are more with the front and back of the wheel well opening, near the bottom, where there just isn't that much space..
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I think 215/60/15 is about 26.20" and 215/65 is 27" so we're looking at .80" total or .40 lift. I'll probably stick with that. Thanks!
 

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Couple of clarifications:

27.5" in Diameter is about the max you'll be able to fit without mods, and may still result in a little rubbing.

15" wheels are a no go. They are too small to clear the front brakes (unless you get a specialty rally wheel, or take a grinder to your front calipers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
sorry I meant 16's. more and more it sounds like a winning combo for no rubbing and tallest tire .
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I think I am going to try the yokahoma Geolandar 215/65. Went through a pair of BFG Advantage T/A's in 16k miles :( Guess the dirt and gravel roads take more out of these tires than I thought!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Has anyone considered a 205/70-16 for a Winter tire? It should be just a hair taller than a 215/65-16. It SHOULD be somewhere in between a 215-65 and 215-70. ????

Technically - although of course per tire could vary....
215/65=27.00
205/70=27.29
215/70=27.85

I know it's minor.. but the decrease from 215 to 205 might also help with snow handling.
 
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