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STi rear sway bar in 95' Legacy wagon


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14 replies to this topic

#1 Bushwick

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 05:26 PM

OK, I finally tracked down a rear sway bar from an 04' STi along with the bushings. It's symmetrical w/o the hoop for the exhaust pipe, and very thick. 

 

Anyways, I looked at some Foresters and they seemed to basically have the exact same clip (that goes around the bushing) as the 99' and earlier Outbacks. Do I need a clip from a newer Forester? I grabbed a set from the older Forester as I wasn't sure until it was off, but it looks like I can dremel the outer contours of the bushing OFF and work it down a bit to fit the older Forester clips w/o issues as the clips have tabs on the outside that should stop it from sliding out. Just wondering if the sway bar will hit the exhaust or not? Or does the exhaust radius need reworked?

 

EDIT: FWIW, I also looked at the body mount (it acts like a stand off and moves the bar further away from the body rail) the clip goes into, again it was the same height as the Legacy one.


Edited by Bushwick, 05 December 2013 - 05:31 PM.


#2 Fairtax4me

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 06:41 PM

04 should be similar to the legacy bar with the hoop over the exhaust pipe. They ran the 20mm bar up til about 05, then switched to a 19mm bar til 07 IIRC. Then they changed the rear suspension and the rear bar changed.

#3 Bushwick

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 08:45 PM

The guy had a ton of STi parts (including a full STi he was parting out that still had the engine, trans, full interior, etc.;too bad I'm not gung ho about this car as it'd have a been a nice full-on turbo swap to use) and had what appeared to be a pre 99' or earlier Outback rear sway bar he showed me first for some reason stating *that* came from a wagon, then right next to it was a very similar looking rear sway bar but w/o the hoop (I hope it's not a front bar LOL). It's definitely larger diameter than the Outback's, though not by much. I specifically asked for a the factory Sti's "20mm" rear bar, and he said this was from an 04'.

 

I didn't need an STi "wagon" rear bar did I?? This bar is probably from a 4 door sedan. It was getting dark by the time I got home, so didn't have time to look under the car to see if it'll clear the exhaust or not w/o mods. What year Forester are you supposed to be able to use the bushing clamps from?

 

Has anyone successfully done this swap to theirs? Any pics? Would like to see how it was done on theirs/yours.

 

 

EDIT: Was the shape of the bar changed in 05'? Meaning does an 05' up not have the hoop?


Edited by Bushwick, 05 December 2013 - 08:49 PM.


#4 Bushwick

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 09:35 PM

Ugh. I just went out with a flash light and compared it with the original sway bar that came with the car...... apparently the guy sold me a front sway bar? I'm at a loss for words.



#5 wentz912

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 09:43 PM

Pictures will clear up a lot of things.



#6 Bushwick

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 10:18 PM

Pictures will clear up a lot of things.

 

It's a front bar so not going to bother with pics. It's basically the same length as the rear bar with similar bolt hole locations. The guy goofed and I just didn't know any better as I know nothing about STi or Impreza for that matter. Let's hope he's a good guy and makes it right.



#7 wentz912

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 11:18 PM

What took you to it being a front bar?



#8 Fairtax4me

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Posted 05 December 2013 - 11:44 PM

Turbo front bar is straight across the entire center section. The ends curl up and outward.
Whiteline bar in this link but its the same design as stock. http://www.rallyspor...urce=GoogleBase

I have a set of Forester rear mount brackets on my legacy (96 L) now and the brackets are about an inch taller than the stock brackets that were on the car. I don't remember exactly which year forester they came from, I wanna say 99 or 00. I had to use them because of my lift, and they were lowered enough that I could actually bolt the rear bar on. With the stock brackets it was nowhere even close.
I just used the bushing clamps that came with the forester brackets and a set of 19mm bushings for an Outback.

Edited by Fairtax4me, 05 December 2013 - 11:47 PM.


#9 Bushwick

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Posted 07 December 2013 - 06:09 AM

What took you to it being a front bar?

I googled it and compared, definitely a front bar, but at least it seems to be an STi front bar so I can at least sell it or trade as it's in fairly good shape.

 

I have a set of Forester rear mount brackets on my legacy (96 L) now and the brackets are about an inch taller than the stock brackets that were on the car. I don't remember exactly which year forester they came from, I wanna say 99 or 00. I had to use them because of my lift, and they were lowered enough that I could actually bolt the rear bar on. With the stock brackets it was nowhere even close.
I just used the bushing clamps that came with the forester brackets and a set of 19mm bushings for an Outback.

OK, so you mean the actual mounting bracket that attaches to the frame rail like a stand off, then the bushing clamp bolts to that. It has something like 2 12mm bolts holding it to the body. You must have gotten yours from a 00' (or newer) then as I was looking at a 98' and 99' at Pull-A-Part and both brackets had the same height as the Legacy.

 

 

Well, the seller blew me off and ignored my question if he actually had a rear bar, which I find to be poor manners on his part. So I'm now stuck with an 04' STi front sway bar. It looks just like this and even has those exact same bushings:  http://jdmengineland...NT_SWAY_BAR.jpg

 

If somebody would like this bar, and has a 20 mm REAR STi bar like Fairtax mentioned, I'd gladly accept a straight up trade, or $45 + shipping, but would rather have the rear bar. If you have a 20 mm rear bar collecting dust in a corner of your garage and find a slightly more valuable front bar appealing or want to possibly upgrade your Impreza, shoot me a PM.



#10 Fairtax4me

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Posted 07 December 2013 - 07:37 PM

As far as I know a turbo front sway bar will not fit a non-turbo model. It will hit the y-pipes.

For the brackets you should also look on Outbacks because the Outback brackets are taller as well.

#11 Bushwick

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 12:54 AM

As far as I know a turbo front sway bar will not fit a non-turbo model. It will hit the y-pipes.

For the brackets you should also look on Outbacks because the Outback brackets are taller as well.

 

Suppose the Y pipe on base non-turbo models would be easy enough to circumvent if someone wanted better handling for cheap, but thanks for mentioning it for those that might want to try. Is it shared between base WRX and STi? Are there any base Impreza with a turbo that are non WRX?

 

I used a ratchet as a quick measuring guide and saw the same height across Forester and Outback. Could you measure yours? Say just the height of the bracket from where it touches the unibody frame rail to where the clamp bolts onto it? Would be helpful to know. 



#12 Fairtax4me

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 06:46 PM

It's raining sleet and frozen stuff right now but Ill try to get a measurement of the brackets tomorrow sometime.

#13 Bushwick

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 08:36 PM

Thanks Fairtax. I suppose another option would be buying longer bolts and sticking a spacer between the bracket and the body.

 

Ever look at the front bar mounting points? Does it look like a WRX bar could be retrofitted to a Legacy? I'm also pondering the idea of welding the ends of this front bar to the factory rear ends, though it'd probably be overly stiff. Although solid axle trucks/cars have no sway bars (those without 4 or 3 link rears). Would be an nice way to repurpose the front bar if it's hard to sell. I've done similar stuff on the rear of my Saab rather than wasting $150 for aftermarket. The result was a much improved handling in corners, though that's lowered with B&G springs and has a custom rear 4-point shock tower brace I designed myself which greatly compliments one another.

 

Speaking of which, do rear shock tower braces help the wagons at all? It's definitely not, nor ever will be a race wagon, but I miss the the feeling of taking normal corners with confidence :)



#14 Fairtax4me

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 09:18 PM

The only difference I know of as far as mounting the front bar is they changed the shape of the clamps at some point. And the two types are not interchangable because they changed the front subframe.

Since you have the front bar, if you feel adventurous one day see if you can make it fit. There may be just enough room around the y-pipe for it to fit, maybe with a little persuasion of the heat shields?


Spacers on the rear brackets could be an option on the left side but on the right the fuel filler is kind of in the way.

Rear tower brace will make a difference in the wagon, though slight, but a difference non-the-less. But put enough of these slight difference makers together and you get a big difference.

Some other things that make big difference in the rear suspension are the trailing arm bushings. I put solid group-N bushings on my 96 because the stock ones were shot and it definitely made a big difference. And the group N bushings were cheaper than the stockers.

There are a few companies that sell "lock-down" bolts that secure the subframe. Those make a difference as well.

Of course one of the biggest difference makers is good shocks. If those are old a set of new KYBs will do wonders.

#15 Bushwick

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Posted 11 December 2013 - 12:05 PM

Unfortunately it's too cold to do anything now unless absolutely needed. Big change up from last week when it was still hitting mid 50's (about 19 right now and going to 10 or so tonight, and let's not forget the nasty wind chill). I'll have to check out the sway bar with front usage eventually. As long as I could get it to attach somewhere firm I can probably get it to work. Gotta measure overall length to see how far off it is. I'm probably going to keep this as a DD for awhile (after winter) and leave the Saab as a toy. Besides the lack of HP, the handling in the rear is my biggest gripe. Any solid bushing inserts for the trailing arms? Could probably get some large washers, cut back any rubber, slip a washer on each end, weld to arm while leaving center alone and be similar enough to a solid bushing set up. Definitely wouldn't care about a slight added road noise. I know when I put Lakewoods in my 79' Mustang is was the single best improvement I did to that car (and I did 4.10's in place of 2.73's, 5-speed, headers, etc.) as Lakewood's had no actual bushing anymore. Though, this car won't benefit as much as it doesn't have the power to wheel hop or run 12's ;). I've thought about making an adjustable bar to "lock" both trailing arms together to help limit independent movement. Thinking of a straight section of square tube, with a half circle cut into each end so it'd wedge between both bars. So, it'd sit in between both bars on it's own, with a u-bolt (or 2) on the end to allow sliding it for alignment adjustments (or bar removal) but still give the added strength of an I-beam set up. Should take some of the stress off the arms moving laterally independently too. Might even be better to make 2 bars per side, sliding one towards each end nearest the bushing. 

 

What do we do for lowering? Are aftermarket springs the only route? Or are we lucky enough to have WRX or similar drop-ins? When I say drop-in, I mean the actual strut assembly. Or at the very least, the springs? I put B&G in the Saab and really liked them. About a $100 less than Eibach and basically the same as Koni or Vogtlands minus the price. Not overly worried about ground clearance as the fun factor goes up 100%. Not to mention MPG should go up slightly on the highway. Thinking a 1.5" drop would suffice.






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