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Installing cruise control on a 87 GL


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10 replies to this topic

#1 Dj7291993

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 02:56 AM

I was wondering if anyone knows how difficult and expensive it would be to put cruise control on my 87 subaru gl. It has the 1.8, carbureted. it is a 3-speed auto. Thanks for the help, Josh.

#2 Tapil

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 03:09 AM

Not that ive done this mod myself (dont care for that cruise control) BUT! from what im reading if your any kind of savy with electrical stuff it says here its easy peasy takes less than an hour

http://www.the12volt...ses/cruises.asp

and cruise kits range from 200 - 500+

Good luck :D

#3 eulogious

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 03:44 AM

Get a used "dealer" kit, not a factory installed version. It has the brain, peddle actuator, and everything else you need to install it on any older subaru. I have even adapted the steering wheel controls to mine, or at least I will when my parts show up next week :grin: I got an entire dealer system off here for $50, and it included everything to make it work. I used it for parts to make mine work properly and to add the steering wheel controls. It is possible, shouldn't be THAT hard to install yourself, the only problem is finding a system... Good luck. I will help you where I can!

#4 rxleone

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 03:57 AM

Get a used "dealer" kit, not a factory installed version. It has the brain, peddle actuator, and everything else you need to install it on any older subaru. I have even adapted the steering wheel controls to mine, or at least I will when my parts show up next week :grin: I got an entire dealer system off here for $50, and it included everything to make it work. I used it for parts to make mine work properly and to add the steering wheel controls. It is possible, shouldn't be THAT hard to install yourself, the only problem is finding a system... Good luck. I will help you where I can!


Are they reliable? I used to have an 89 Legacy with CC, and it was great, but I've never seen let alone tried one out on a GL before. Do they use the same sort of system?

Edited by rxleone, 02 March 2010 - 04:00 AM.


#5 eulogious

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 04:04 AM

Are they reliable? I used to have an 89 Legacy with CC, and it was great, but I've never seen let alone tried one out on a GL before. Do they use the same system?


No it's a different system. The dealer one is a complete stand alone system that can be installed really on any car... It just uses the brain, peddle actuator, and thats about it. The problem I had with mine is that it was vacuum controlled on a turbo car :rolleyes: Gee I wonder why it wouldn't hold going up a hill, the engine doesn't produce vacuum under boost. I installed a vacuum pump and a relay and it was working great :banana: Apparently the system was installed by the dealer when they bought they car in 1990, it's on the invoice, so I would say that it's reliable. When I got it, it "worked" but it just wouldn't hold speed up hills, but it still tired. Once I get my steering wheel controls wired in, I will be much happier with it. I hate the stupid dash mount controls, but at least it works :)

#6 rxleone

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 04:07 AM

No it's a different system. The dealer one is a complete stand alone system that can be installed really on any car... It just uses the brain, peddle actuator, and thats about it. The problem I had with mine is that it was vacuum controlled on a turbo car :rolleyes: Gee I wonder why it wouldn't hold going up a hill, the engine doesn't produce vacuum under boost. I installed a vacuum pump and a relay and it was working great :banana: Apparently the system was installed by the dealer when they bought they car in 1990, it's on the invoice, so I would say that it's reliable. When I got it, it "worked" but it just wouldn't hold speed up hills, but it still tired. Once I get my steering wheel controls wired in, I will be much happier with it. I hate the stupid dash mount controls, but at least it works :)


Pedal Actuator? So instead of using a secondary wire on the throttle body or carb it actually pushes the pedal down?

#7 eulogious

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 04:40 AM

Pedal Actuator? So instead of using a secondary wire on the throttle body or carb it actually pushes the pedal down?


Well, technically it pulls the pedal, but same idea. It's attached to the top of the peddle assembly, so therefore when it pulls/sucks it accelerates (it's vacuum operated :rolleyes: :)), and then when it release the vacuum, it decelerates. It's a really simple but effective system. Works great and has for the last 7,000 miles since I fix it, I just used it about 10 min ago, and I am about to use it again on my way back to work :) I really like cruise, especially at 2am, that way I don't speed and my speed stays the same :)

#8 Gloyale

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 10:23 AM

Pedal Actuator? So instead of using a secondary wire on the throttle body or carb it actually pushes the pedal down?


Yup. Little diaphrahm mounted on the pedal assembly.

My Cruise control never worked after my GL got flooded (driven into the river) the brain was no good.

So for my long trip to New Mexico last summer I simply hooked a vacuum pump/tester to the diaphram at the pedal. When I wanted cruise I just pumped it up till it held about 3-4 lbs. of vac. Used the release vavle on the pump to scrub any extra speed. more of a throttle lock than a set cruising speed.......sometimes would slow up hills or creep faster down them. But since it was throttle opening staying even the whole time I got the best mileage I've ever gotten from my GL, better than regular cruise.

I know.......dangerous. I only did this on long open stretches and with a simply "YANK" of the tubing I could shut it off quickly. But my knee and heel could not handle 4000+ miles with no cruise control.

#9 Twitch de la Brat

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 05:29 PM

Yup. Little diaphrahm mounted on the pedal assembly.

My Cruise control never worked after my GL got flooded (driven into the river) the brain was no good.

So for my long trip to New Mexico last summer I simply hooked a vacuum pump/tester to the diaphram at the pedal. When I wanted cruise I just pumped it up till it held about 3-4 lbs. of vac. Used the release vavle on the pump to scrub any extra speed. more of a throttle lock than a set cruising speed.......sometimes would slow up hills or creep faster down them. But since it was throttle opening staying even the whole time I got the best mileage I've ever gotten from my GL, better than regular cruise.

I know.......dangerous. I only did this on long open stretches and with a simply "YANK" of the tubing I could shut it off quickly. But my knee and heel could not handle 4000+ miles with no cruise control.


That sounds similar to a system I heard about on old American cars.
The essentially had a secondary cable on the throttle shaft that was
connected to a slider either on the dash or on the steering column.
All they would do is find the throttle position that would maintain the speed
they wanted and set the lever to that.

If you wanted you could apply that sort of system to your GL.
Just get a spare cable and some sort of mechanism to adjust it by and
you're good to go.

Twitch

Edited by Twitch de la Brat, 02 March 2010 - 05:31 PM.
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#10 Scoobywagon

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Posted 03 March 2010 - 01:12 AM

Don't use a vacuum actuator. They're vary unreliable, especially as they age. Use an electronic cruise control. At my shop we would use part number 250-1223 from Rostra Precision Controls. This is a universal electronic cruise control. We would also use 250-3421 or 250-3742. These are both universal handles and the only difference between them is style. Finally, some vehicles will need a magnet kit to provide a speed signal to the cruise control. If anyone is interested, PM me and I'll provide pricing. Should give you some idea as to what to expect from a local seller. Depending on where you are, I may also be able to help you find a local dealer.

#11 eulogious

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Posted 03 March 2010 - 03:56 AM

Don't use a vacuum actuator. They're vary unreliable, especially as they age. Use an electronic cruise control. At my shop we would use part number 250-1223 from Rostra Precision Controls. This is a universal electronic cruise control. We would also use 250-3421 or 250-3742. These are both universal handles and the only difference between them is style. Finally, some vehicles will need a magnet kit to provide a speed signal to the cruise control. If anyone is interested, PM me and I'll provide pricing. Should give you some idea as to what to expect from a local seller. Depending on where you are, I may also be able to help you find a local dealer.


I agree 100% with you, but if you only spend $500 on your subaru, I doubt you will want to spend anywhere near half that for cruise. You can pickup a used system for pretty cheap, and around here you should also be able to find any parts that might break fairly easily.

Mine actuator is 20 years old and works fine. When it breaks, I will get a new one for cheap. In fact I think I have one in a parts box coming my way anyway, so I should be good to go :) Just my opinion...




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