Jump to content


Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, my lurker friend!

Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, an unparalleled Subaru community full of the greatest Subaru gurus and modders on the planet! We offer technical information and discussion about all things Subaru, the best and most popular all wheel drive vehicles ever created.

We offer all this information for free to everyone, even lurkers like you! All we ask in return is that you sign up and give back some of what you get out - without our awesome registered users none of this would be possible! Plus, you get way more great stuff as a member! Lurk to lose, participate to WIN*!
  • Say hello and join the conversation
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get automatic updates
  • Get your own profile and make new friends
  • Classifieds with all sorts of Subaru goodies
  • Photo hosting in our gallery
  • Meet other cool people with cool cars
Seriously, what are you waiting for? Make your life more fulfilling and join today! You and your Subaru won't regret it, we guarantee** it.

* The joy of participation and being generally awesome constitutes winning
** Not an actual guarantee, but seriously, you probably won't regret it!

Serving the Subaru Community since May 18th, 1998!

Guest Message by DevFuse
 

Photo
- - - - -

Some assembly required (struts & springs)


  • Please log in to reply
48 replies to this topic

#1 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 15 February 2014 - 10:07 AM

So I purchased all new components for my Legacy - new KYB Excel struts, new OE springs, new rubber spring pads, and new tophats - since the donor Forester had over 360,000 on it, and the used struts/springs/tophats are pretty worn out....

 

My plan is to assemble all the parts then simply swap the assemblies...

 

the question is - which way is up on the springs???

 

one end has a very tight coil, the other is more open...looking at the spring perch on the strut, I am guessing the tighter end goes down, on the strut, the open end goes up?

 

Like this?

 

1620640_10201631615021357_1088726943_n.j

 

Is that the correct orientation?


Edited by heartless, 15 February 2014 - 10:07 AM.


#2 Razorthirty

Razorthirty

    New User

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 46 posts
  • Bozeman, montana

Posted 15 February 2014 - 10:13 AM

Edit;I was wrong, so Very sorry, but i believe that would have been obvious upon assembly.


Edited by Razorthirty, 15 February 2014 - 10:29 AM.


#3 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 15 February 2014 - 10:15 AM

Thank you VERY much! now, back to work! :)



#4 Fairtax4me

Fairtax4me

    Su bah roo'n

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 8,738 posts
  • Charlottesburg, VA

Posted 15 February 2014 - 10:16 AM

Other way. The "open" end sits in that little lower corner on the strut. Once you put it on there and line it up it will look right and make sense.
That corner is what aligns the spring properly to minimize the chance of breaking the lower coil, and it keeps the spring from moving on the strut perch.

#5 86BRATMAN

86BRATMAN

    Subaru Master

  • Members
  • 3,290 posts
  • Tazewell Virginia

Posted 15 February 2014 - 10:17 AM

That does not look right to me, at all. Flip the spring, then go back to work.

#6 Fairtax4me

Fairtax4me

    Su bah roo'n

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 8,738 posts
  • Charlottesburg, VA

Posted 15 February 2014 - 10:19 AM

Yes ma'am that is the correct orientation. ;)


:o Noooooooooooo!! It's upside down!

#7 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 15 February 2014 - 12:12 PM

ok, so I had to run an errand for work before I could go any further with this and I come back and see multiple posts that it goes the other way around?

 

the FSM drawings arent the best where the springs are concerned, but it does kind of look like the open end does go down....

 

from the 98 Forester FSM (fronts)...

 

FSMspringdraw.jpg

 

One other thing that I would like clarification on - there isnt supposed to be a rubber pad on the lower front spring mount (strut end)??

the drawings dont show one for either the Legacy or the Forester, and I couldnt find any parts listing for one in that location either...rears have the rubber pads top and bottom, fronts are only at the top?


Edited by heartless, 15 February 2014 - 12:13 PM.


#8 86BRATMAN

86BRATMAN

    Subaru Master

  • Members
  • 3,290 posts
  • Tazewell Virginia

Posted 15 February 2014 - 12:38 PM

IMAG1291_zpsc1dtia0w.jpg

IMAG1292_zps6rkdgk9j.jpg

IMAG1293_zpsp3xwc75f.jpg

IMAG1294_zpsj6ueu85l.jpg

IMAG1290_zpsjkfkhd3k.jpg

I hope these help.

Edited by 86BRATMAN, 15 February 2014 - 12:55 PM.


#9 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 15 February 2014 - 01:00 PM

thanks bratman - but now I am even more confused...

 

on your pics it looks like both ends are fairly tight - the bottom being more so than the top...

 

the brand new spring I am looking at (in the above pics) has one end tight and the other end very obviously open...

 

argh... :confused:



#10 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 15 February 2014 - 01:14 PM

ok, so I placed the spring against the lower perch in both positions...

 

open end first - this just doesnt look right to me...

 

1901178_10201632422521544_1732051783_n.j

 

now the tight end...this does look right to me...

 

1932320_10201632422561545_1098782394_n.j

 

Thoughts? comments? suggestions?

 

I really want to get these put together so I can get them installed tomorrow when it is supposed to be warmer... help?



#11 86BRATMAN

86BRATMAN

    Subaru Master

  • Members
  • 3,290 posts
  • Tazewell Virginia

Posted 15 February 2014 - 01:20 PM

It's been about a year since I've had a set apart, but the lower end compresses against itself when the springs are installed, the top sits right on top of itself to give a flattish spot for the top hat to be secured. I learned that part the hard way when I was putting the forester springs on outback struts last winter.


Also if you look at the paint marks on the springs the yellow dot is the lower one.

Edited by 86BRATMAN, 15 February 2014 - 01:22 PM.


#12 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 15 February 2014 - 01:29 PM

ok, yeah - comparing the paint marks on yours to what is on my new ones, they are identical - yellow & green on one coil, red on the next coil...

 

alrighty then, open end down it is... here goes nuttin...

 

whenever I have done struts in the past it was always compress existing spring, swap the strut, reassemble - never really paid much attention to which way the spring actually went as long as it was the same from old to new...


Edited by heartless, 15 February 2014 - 01:31 PM.


#13 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Members
  • 4,706 posts
  • Texas

Posted 15 February 2014 - 01:47 PM

the open end goes on the bottom so the spring end fits up against that 'pocket'.

also, on my outback anyway, there is an orientation to the top hat. There should be an arrow or other marking that is supposed to point 'outside' after assembly. That is, it points toward the curbside of the fender - 90degrees from the fore-aft axis of the car.

And the washer on top has an orientation. The domed or bevel side goes against the inner race of the mount's bearing.

just pay close attention to how things come apart. and be careful.

Edited by 1 Lucky Texan, 15 February 2014 - 01:51 PM.


#14 86BRATMAN

86BRATMAN

    Subaru Master

  • Members
  • 3,290 posts
  • Tazewell Virginia

Posted 15 February 2014 - 02:21 PM

The washer Texan is talking about is on the fronts, I've never ran across one on the rear. But he is spot on about the orientation, the rears won't go in the car of its not justright. I've found that standing over the strut as you put the top hat on works really well, the outer mount bolt should line up with the forward flange of where the strut bolts to the knuckle.

#15 rverdoold

rverdoold

    Subaru Nut

  • Members
  • 649 posts
  • Netherlands

Posted 15 February 2014 - 03:09 PM

The whole top hat has an orientation (at least with mine), There were notches 4WR - FWD - 4WL, see the images.

 

IMG 4136
IMG 4132
IMG 4142

 



#16 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 15 February 2014 - 03:10 PM

The washer Texan is talking about is on the fronts, I've never ran across one on the rear. But he is spot on about the orientation, the rears won't go in the car of its not justright. I've found that standing over the strut as you put the top hat on works really well, the outer mount bolt should line up with the forward flange of where the strut bolts to the knuckle.

 

I was just about to ask about that - I thought that is the way it should be, but nice to know for sure. getting that lined up is a little bit of a headache, but I will be sure to do it.

I am also aware of the difference between left & right on the rear tophats and was careful to make sure I have the matching strut and tophat for each side.

 

I am primarily interested in getting the rears installed ASAP - tired of getting beaten up by completely worn out struts back there - right rear mostly - but the fronts will be done in short order as well - same day of I can get all 4 assemblies done today...altho using the HF spring compressors does take a bit of time...cant use impact tools on them - we trashed one set doing that. :P

 

Texan - the old ones arent coming apart - I got all brand new stuff (took me almost 2 months buying a couple of pieces at a time) and am going to be replacing the enitre assemblies once I get them all put together. Much easier this way - well, maybe (LOL). no more worn out parts anyway...I figure once I get the new stuff in it should be good for pretty much the remaining life of the car...unless I can manage to get more than 7-8 years out of this one! hehe :D



#17 1 Lucky Texan

1 Lucky Texan

    I read a lot about Subarus

  • Members
  • 4,706 posts
  • Texas

Posted 15 February 2014 - 03:21 PM

number 19, for the fronts, has to go the correct way;

http://www.subaruout...back-struts.jpg

#18 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 15 February 2014 - 03:41 PM

number 19, for the fronts, has to go the correct way;

http://www.subaruout...back-struts.jpg

 

 

yup, just ordered those actually - the one thing I missed - so the fronts wont be getting assembled today...oh well...

 

well, one down, one to go for the rear... now that it is all put together it does look right...can hardly wait to get these put on the car!

 

1653775_10201633112258787_1240233813_n.j



#19 Fairtax4me

Fairtax4me

    Su bah roo'n

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 8,738 posts
  • Charlottesburg, VA

Posted 15 February 2014 - 04:44 PM

Just did the rears on my car a few months ago and all this is fresh in my mind. Open end definitely goes down.

Don't worry about getting the top hats abaolutely perfect. Just get them in the general correct orientation within about 1/4" is fine. After you slide the strut up into the car and get the bolts in the top you can use a long 3/8" socket extension or big screwdriver through the lower bolt holes to twist the strut one way or the other.

I haven't ever seen a front strut with the lower cushion, dunno if they all fall off or if they just didnt put them on at the factory.
But If you live in the rust belt, you definitely want the lower cushion to prevent rust on the lower coil of the spring.

Edited by Fairtax4me, 15 February 2014 - 04:51 PM.


#20 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 15 February 2014 - 05:16 PM

the FSM drawings dont show any pads on the lower fronts, and the set that is on the car right now doesnt have them either...I would have to do some digging in the snow to find the old ones that came off the car...

 

Rear assemblies are complete and ready for installation.

 

Will have to wait on the spacers/washers that Texan mentioned for the fronts before I can get those put together...but that much closer.

 

my plan to borrow the shop where the other half works got blown up - seems his boss is going to be there all day tomorrow...oh well...



#21 86BRATMAN

86BRATMAN

    Subaru Master

  • Members
  • 3,290 posts
  • Tazewell Virginia

Posted 15 February 2014 - 06:35 PM

My fronts don't have a lower rubber cushion, well technically none of the 4 sets it's had on it have. I think I may have seen them on some of the newer subarus but I can't swear to it.

#22 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 16 February 2014 - 05:59 PM

weather was cooperative enough today that we braved the outdoors and got the new rear strut assemblies installed - and I think I now know why I was being beaten up so badly...the right rear strut was so far gone the car was riding on the spring alone - and that was giving out as well...

 

1962641_10201639343734570_1851386311_n.j

 

both old strut assemblies...you can see just how much more the right one had compressed... :blink:  Really glad I decided to go new with everything, not just new struts.

 

75965_10201639831946775_1511654537_n.jpg

 

So - anyone interested in a slightly used set of rear Forester strut assemblies? :lol:



#23 Fairtax4me

Fairtax4me

    Su bah roo'n

  • Gold Subscribers
  • 8,738 posts
  • Charlottesburg, VA

Posted 16 February 2014 - 10:33 PM

Cheap lowering kit! :D

The rear springs on my 95 were so bad I could lean on the strut and compress them. Neither of them were broken yet though!

#24 heartless

heartless

    Do YOU Subaru?

  • Members
  • 2,672 posts
  • Central Wisconsin

Posted 17 February 2014 - 07:06 AM

I have the feeling that if I was to take those apart, the one strut would almost compress itself. not even sure I would need the spring compressor for the one, it is so squished. :unsure: I knew the right rear was in bad shape - just didnt realize how bad until we got it out and laid it next to the new one.

 

The difference in ride already - with just the new rears installed - is like night and day - or should I say nightmare and day dream. :D I can hardly wait to get the fronts done - just waiting on the spacers/washers that go between the upper spring seat & tophat to get here...hopefully by the end of the week.

 

the old ones will get stuffed back into the Forester they came from so we can move it/load it on the trailer for hauling it away when the weather warms up. it is currently sitting on blocks buried in snow... :rolleyes:


Edited by heartless, 17 February 2014 - 07:22 AM.


#25 Gloyale

Gloyale

    It's a sickness

  • Members
  • 9,099 posts
  • Corvallis, OR PNW

Posted 17 February 2014 - 11:25 AM

weather was cooperative enough today that we braved the outdoors and got the new rear strut assemblies installed - and I think I now know why I was being beaten up so badly...the right rear strut was so far gone the car was riding on the spring alone - and that was giving out as well...

 

1962641_10201639343734570_1851386311_n.j

 

both old strut assemblies...you can see just how much more the right one had compressed... :blink:  Really glad I decided to go new with everything, not just new struts.

 

75965_10201639831946775_1511654537_n.jpg

 

So - anyone interested in a slightly used set of rear Forester strut assemblies? :lol:

 

Those don't look like the same strut.

 

Even with a weak spring........extended length while unloaded would be the same length.

 

Looks like a Leggy and an outback or perhaps one 98-03 forester strut and one 04-08.






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users