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1985 Subaru Brat Suspension Upgrade


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12 replies to this topic

#1 Twitch de la Brat

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 10:00 PM

I hope I'm not posting in the wrong section, but I'm looking for some suggestions for some pneumatic, aka air, shocks.
I want some rally (I mean rally, not really) tough semi-long travel shocks that can have on the fly adjustment.
And that also give me approx 2" in lift over stock.
Do any of you racing guys have any brands or suggestions that might help?
Oh, and I'm not too good at welding but if I need to make some brackets to adapt the struts to the current mounts, I can.
Thanks for any info,

Twitch

#2 edrach

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 12:16 AM

I can't tell you anything about air shocks or lifts. But I know a little about shocks for the Brat. I installed KYB GR-2 shocks on my '84 Brat back when I was rallycrossing it and I liked them very much. They were not adjustable but KYB manufactures an adjustable shock (AGX) and maybe there may still be some stock available that will fit the Brat.

I would suggest you check Whiteline in Australia to see what they might offer in the way of suspension improvements. They do have a US distributor (I think Rallitek in Portland is one) and you can order directly from them if you like. Your Brat is known as a Brumby in Australia I believe. http://www.whiteline.com.au/

#3 Numbchux

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 02:25 AM

there's approximately nothing made for the brat performance-wise. GR2s are the only thing that are stiffer than stock. and those are not adjustable.

and the front strut design is unique enough, I doubt you'll find anything that'll work up there very easily.



not to say it can't be done. just that I don't think it has, and it won't be easy.

#4 Twitch de la Brat

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 03:25 AM

Hmmph.
Well, I knew wasn't going to be easy, but sheesh.
Thanks for the references, but their site seems to be having some issues.
I have done some searching via yahoo/google/dogpile
to find air shocks and the only thing I can come up with
are these truck air shocks that are designed for helping
handle large loads. Does anybody know if these could work?
Cuz some have on the fly pressure adjustment,
and that's exactly what I want.

The only problem I can see right now is the fact that there are
absolutely no models listed for subaru.
Does anybody know of any yota's or nissan's that might work?
Heck I just need something that matches my strut mount and will hold my alignment.

If anyone has measurements and maybe patterns that I could look at,
that'd be great, if not I'm a gonna just go to different shops to look at them
one, by stinking one. :-\

Thanks again,

Twitch.

#5 Twitch de la Brat

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Posted 25 January 2009 - 02:17 AM

Well, this site called "Street Beat Customs" says they got a shock setup with
compressor for 1k.
OUCH!!! :eek:
And that doesn't include the controller nor the wiring.
It may even only be for 2 shocks as well.

Or JC Whitney has some adjustable gas shocks that can have a wireless
controller added.
Unfortunately they don't add any lift. :-\

Options, options.

Twitch

#6 Numbchux

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Posted 25 January 2009 - 04:30 AM

haha, street beat. that's where one of our members (wow....can't even remember his name now. been so long since I've seen him around) got the ragtop he had in his lifted wagon.



anyway. $1k is a pretty darn good price for a setup like you're talking, and I HIGHLY doubt that ones strong enough to hold up to more than a few minutes of rally abuse. although I don't see that big airbag fitting in the rear wheel well of a brat....


also, the shocks have nothing to do with ride height in the back. it's all in the torsion bars. you could add a helper of some sort, but something designed to hold up the weight of a car is going to be far too stiff in addition to the torsion bar.

#7 subyrally

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Posted 27 January 2009 - 01:20 PM

you could always do what i am going to do in my brat, cfut out the wheel wells in the rear and make you own custom shock mounts. i am planning on taking out the tortion bars and converting mine to coil over suspension in the rear. i will also be making a full custom strut mount and then a new wheel well around it.

#8 s'ko

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Posted 28 January 2009 - 02:05 PM

I vote for removing the torsion bar, moving the rear diff forward and then running axles straight into a sprocket that powers the rear wheels by a chain. The chain would be housed inside trailing arms.
This would elimate the rear axles being the limit to suspension travel.
kind of like this stuff.
http://www.chaindriverail.com/

Edited by s'ko, 29 January 2009 - 08:43 PM.


#9 subyrally

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Posted 28 January 2009 - 02:40 PM

interesting, very interesting.

#10 Twitch de la Brat

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Posted 14 February 2009 - 01:49 AM

I'd like the chain drive if I was offroading, but I want to rallycross, not really
rock crawling stuff.
I am, however, greatly tempted by the cutting out of the wheel well and
custom building my own.
Mine are basically shot, so I might do that, once I get a rig to drive other
than my brat.
Have the whole bottom resheeted in 1/8th in steel, ok maybe 1/16 to save
money.
Grind the rust out of my fenders and open them up big enough to fit some
17" wheels with low pro rally tires, yeah.
Sorry, drifted off. :D (pun not intended)

Twitch

#11 Numbchux

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Posted 14 February 2009 - 04:09 AM

"lo-pro rally tires" :grin:

you're new to the sport aren't you. I know many guys DOWNGRADING brakes so they can run 14s and 15s on their WRXs and STis for better tire selection.

#12 coxy

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Posted 04 March 2009 - 04:57 AM

First thing to sort out is suspension geometry,then the front struts.
If you can find a friendly supplier that lets you look through catalogues you should be able to come up with something,it is something I need to do for my own Brumby when I have some spare time.
For example about what I mean with interchanges in the past I have used Koni Sport Opel commodore strut inserts in a RA 40 Toyota Celica and Volkswagon Passat station wagon rear shocks when I did a Nissan Z18 turbo conversion into a Datsun B110 Utility (Pickup to you guy"s).
At least some suppliers actually give dimensions of the replacement components and some like Bilstein and Koni also have damping specs available,apply some logic and you will be amazed at what will work.
The RA40 celica was very close in spec to the Opel weightwise and the dimensions were virtually identical so the Opel inserts meant externally adjustable sport Koni's for a car they had no listing for,and they worked brilliantly,So Just because it isn't listed doesn't mean you're sunk.And thats without using say XT6 front end which bolts in and being for a heavier six cylinder will be close to what you need,the rear end can also be easily converted to Loyal style coil overs as well with the wagon being in the ballpark spring rate wise.

#13 Twitch de la Brat

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Posted 18 May 2009 - 11:21 PM

Well, with the recent issues with the brat, it's now parked.
Now begins the rebuild. MWAHAHAHAAAAA...
I'm going to do a 5 lug swap with full Impreza suspension and all new brackets.
The original suspension components are S-H-O-T.
I'm also going to be doing the same thing that backwoodsboy did.
125HP EA81 BABY!!! :banana:
Hooked straight up to a 5ps d/r :grin:
Sorry, just excited about the rebuild.

I guess this can be, or will be the official build thread...

Twitch

And, as always, suggestions are always appreciated.




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