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Mighty Whitey the mildly modded '97 Leggy L wagon


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17 replies to this topic

#1 kenpdx

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Posted 23 September 2012 - 12:53 PM

Posted Image


Figured it was time to join the frenzy on the Members Rides page.

Got this 97 in 07 with 150,000 and kept it mostly stock despite rallying the thing pretty hard in the boonies.

Mods to date include OB struts, 15" wheels and tires (195-65-15), AFE dry air filter, cut down and repainted bumper (soon to be replaced with a tube set up and lights).

Not too much work as it's my daily driver, but there are plans for some interior mods:
WRX seats, map light pod

Add a small lift out of an OB or a 3" High Guys, 2.5 motor when my trusty 2.2 ************s the bed and the tube bumper and lights when I can get a hold of the dude with the CAD program, bender and notcher.

Not super fancy, I know, but I do my serious off roading on my MT bike.:D

#2 TheLoyale

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Posted 23 September 2012 - 02:30 PM

I'd be interested in seeing what you do to it! Dunno if I'd vote for swapping a SOHC 2.5 in place of the 2.2 - I am betting anything that 2.2 will hold up well, mine had 225,000 (And its still running with the other owner)

If anything, if you want more tugging power, swap EJ18 heads onto the EJ22 block to make a higher compression motor and boost your torque.

-Tom

#3 kenpdx

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Posted 23 September 2012 - 09:29 PM

I have been a tad wary of the 2.5 seeing all the head gasket issues, I'll try the heads. It's got 212k and is going strong, so I don't figure I'll mess with it til it goes. Lots of steep 2 tracks here and the 2.2 with an auto doesn't really have the poop in the crux spots.

The longer I have it the more I want to play around with it. a couple friends here are big time Toyota modders and are always ready to provide motivation to modify. I'll post photos as I get the gumption to mess with this thing. And the $.:D

#4 kenpdx

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Posted 23 September 2012 - 10:22 PM

I'd be interested in seeing what you do to it! Dunno if I'd vote for swapping a SOHC 2.5 in place of the 2.2 - I am betting anything that 2.2 will hold up well, mine had 225,000 (And its still running with the other owner)

If anything, if you want more tugging power, swap EJ18 heads onto the EJ22 block to make a higher compression motor and boost your torque.

-Tom


I'm fairly unsavy on engine mods. what are the necessary mods to get the heads to fit and function properly and what might be the drawbacks of such a switch?

Thanks!

#5 TheLoyale

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 11:51 AM

If I remember right, the SOHC Heads from an EJ18, EJ22, EJ25 are all the same, the port size is different which is what changes compression (Please correct me if I am wrong)

You can also take a 2.5 block (SOHC or DOHC) and swap EJ22 heads onto that for a High-compression EJ25.

The main reason the EJ25D (DOHC) has such head gasket issues is, there aren't enough bolts to hold the torque evenly over the entire head, so there is a weak spot with usually blows.

As for modding, you'll find a lot of that around here too. Its where I got my start, and now I'm building up a Landcruiser. Subarus are fun, easy and cheap to build!

#6 kenpdx

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 12:26 PM

If I remember right, the SOHC Heads from an EJ18, EJ22, EJ25 are all the same, the port size is different which is what changes compression (Please correct me if I am wrong)

You can also take a 2.5 block (SOHC or DOHC) and swap EJ22 heads onto that for a High-compression EJ25.

The main reason the EJ25D (DOHC) has such head gasket issues is, there aren't enough bolts to hold the torque evenly over the entire head, so there is a weak spot with usually blows.

As for modding, you'll find a lot of that around here too. Its where I got my start, and now I'm building up a Landcruiser. Subarus are fun, easy and cheap to build!


Thanks for the info, that makes sense.

This is my 4th Soob since 1993 and I've always just loved 'em the way they were, but after customizing MT bikes for a long time I figured it was time to step it up a level. Plus I can't really find the car I want, so figure i'll build it with the guidance of the superb knowledge of the folks here.

#7 TheLoyale

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 01:22 PM

Yeah I agree, its easier to build the car you want, than trying to find it. Plus you can make it more personal, your own details and everything.

Something you may want to find out is, if the Cams from either motors make a difference.

Also, being a 1997, you might have a Phase-II EJ22, which will have the flatter style valve covers, where the spark plug goes into them, vs the top of the head. 1997 or '98 was the year for the Phase-II motor.

Another thing to know, 1990-1995 EJ22 motors will have Dual-port exhaust ports, where as the 1996 to..? Will have the single port heads.

The Dual port heads are more sought after, because you can swap on a Non-Turbo UEL header to give your subie more of a deep rumble. Although, someone on here makes custom Single port headers now, Mandrel bent too!

1990-94 EJ22 will be OBD-I, 1995 EJ22 will be the same exact thing, except this motor has the OBD-II harness. So this motor is kinda the "One to have" because its OBD-II and still has the older style heads/intake.

As for EJ18, 1993-95 Impreza FWD will have the EJ18. If the Impreza is AWD it will most likely have the EJ22.

Cheers!
-Tom

#8 kenpdx

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 09:59 PM

thanks for all that! I appreciate getting the info.

Today was a strictly cosmetic day, but i did chat with the guy owning the equipment necessary for the tube bumper. Should have that after the first of the year.

#9 kenpdx

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 10:16 PM

So here are the plans to get her a little taller and more offroad worthy:

New OB struts (current ones are on the way out) +1.5" over stock
OB Extended King Springs- + approx 1.25"
Strut toppers-3/4"
OB body blocks to level out the CVs and bring the body up 1.25"
With the current tires I figure I'll get about 3" lift on the body and up my clearance about the same.

I think this should work out well, but time will tell.

Any of you Jedi wanna give this a quick look and see if you can find the fatal flaw I most likely overlooked or if I've chosen to go about this the hard way?

Thanks!:D

#10 bratman18

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 06:56 AM

You'll need to extend your steering u joint as well if you use the OB body lift.

#11 TheLoyale

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 10:37 AM

You'll need to extend your steering u joint as well if you use the OB body lift.


Yes. So also snag the extended Steering joint from the Outback you pull the blocks from. Just so you know, the Outback blocks drop the engine and rear crossmember down so the axles are a little might level as you said, but they will not raise the body up. The struts and strut top hats are whats gonna give you lift.

You sound A-OK Houston...

:)

#12 bratman18

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 11:11 AM

The steering column is different length too, so the u joint may not swap in from the Outback. When a friend of mine lifted his 99 Legacy wagon, he put the OB lift blocks in, and tried using the u joint as well, he had to use the entire Outback column and u joint for it to fit.

#13 kenpdx

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 07:09 PM

You'll need to extend your steering u joint as well if you use the OB body lift.


Yep, I didn't mention it because i already have one available, but good eye on the catch

#14 kenpdx

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 07:12 PM

Yes. So also snag the extended Steering joint from the Outback you pull the blocks from. Just so you know, the Outback blocks drop the engine and rear crossmember down so the axles are a little might level as you said, but they will not raise the body up. The struts and strut top hats are whats gonna give you lift.

You sound A-OK Houston...

:)


Copy that.

Thanks for the feedback. I figure I've got a decent idea of what I'm doing but it would be silly not to take advantage of the knowledge here.

#15 TheLoyale

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 03:30 PM

If in fact the steering column is different from the Legacy to Outback models, somebody post a comparison pic! I'd like to see this. It almost seems silly that Subaru would manufacture a different shaft for the same body car.

If anything, you can always cut the original u-joint in half, and use a piece of round tubing cut to whatever length you need, drop in both ends, and weld it up. This is what most lifted guys do since its easy (If you have a welder) Its not really a safety concern as long as you get solid welds.

Edited by TheLoyale, 02 October 2012 - 05:07 PM.


#16 bratman18

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 03:57 PM

Yeah it made no sense to me either, but he is a long time Subaru guy and has done just about every mod to a Subaru that can be done. He tried loosening up the column to gain some room and it just wouldn't fit. He swapped the entire column from the Outback into the Legacy and everything went right together.

#17 kenpdx

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 10:56 PM

If in fact the steering column is different from the Legacy to Outback models, somebody post a comparison pic! I'd like to see this. It almost seems silly that Subaru would manufacture a different shaft for the same body car.

If anything, you can always cut the original u-joint in half, and use a piece of round tubing cut to whatever length you need, drop in both ends, and weld it up. This is what most lifted guys do since its easy (If you have a welder) Its not really a safety concern as long as you get solid welds.


That's what I was wondering, but I have access to a plasma cutter and MIG welder, along with a badass shop, so a little fabbing shouldn't be a problem.

Got an OB block set purchased and soon to be on the way. Gonna slap 'em in after i get back from a little Canadian road trip. :headbang:

#18 kenpdx

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Posted 10 October 2012 - 07:20 PM

Well, while on vacation in Calgary, I found a Forester drivers seat and some new hatch struts cheap. Damn seat is a good 2 inches higher which is taking a little getting used to. Also have an Outback "lift kit" on the way from a fellow USMBer which will be getting fired in upon my return to Ideeho.
After that a tube bumper and we'll be good to go. Well after struts and such, but those require $.




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