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Adventure Subaru - Lifted 1997 Impreza Outback (Lots of pics)

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Finally got lifted! Took a while to get all the pieces together for it. Here's what I started with.

 

1997 Subaru Impreza Outback Sport. EJ22 with 5 speed. 250k

 

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Shopping list was

 

Set of 4 99 Forester Struts/springs

3/8 inch HDPE Strut top spacers

99 Subaru Forester Swaybar Brackets

97 Subaru Legacy Outback Trailing Arm brackets

4 2001 Chrysler Sebring 15 inch steel rims

4 Sentry LT 215/75/15 tires

15 inch subaru rim (spare)

215/75/15 jy tire (spare)

Safari style roof rack (a little welding goes a long way)

Fog lights

 

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Fresh meat.

 

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First strut/spring/spacer installed. Gave about 3 1/2 inches of lift alone.

 

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Front complete. Front is super easy. took less than an hour. The rear was much more. Broke 5 of 6 welds on the bolts for the trailing arm brackets. Had to cut through the floor with an angle grinder and cutting disc to gain access. Replaced the old bolts with shiney new ones. Had to drill a new hole for the strut tops and widen two of the existing ones on each side.

 

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I'm thrilled with the final result. Took some cutting and bashing to get rid of the rubbing on turns. (Still have a little to find.) and there's a rattle somewhere when i hit a pothole on the passenger rear. I have about 11 1/2 inches of clearance at the rockers vs. 6 1/2 at stock. Still handles well. Working on swaybar links now. Alignment is also next on the list. (Any advice for getting back to normal camber? Is this something an alignment shop can do? or am I shopping for camber bolts?)

 

Car is ready for some adventure. Too bad I have to drive a ways to find any decent trails in this part of the country.

Edited by AdventureSubaru
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I LIKE IT!!! I have the same plans for my 97 OBS. forester struts/springs but minus the spacers. i see you said it still handles good. i still plan to drive mine every day. GREAT LOOKING CAR!!

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Comparison next to my friends stock 93 L sedan. It really is fantastic the way that everything sits tight to the body underneath. A stock Jeep Wrangler Rubicon has 10 1/2 inches of ground clearance at the diff. I've got about 11 1/4 at the rockers and not much that hangs lower than that under the car.

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Looks great! icon14.gif

 

The whole thing really is a package deal. The lift, the meaty tires, the level stance... it all works great together. icon14.gif

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x2 man, looks pretty sweet. i wanna do a lifted OBS for my next ride once my wagon gets eaten by the salt monster.

 

home made roof rack FTW!

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I made two of them. I test fitted the other one on my girlfriends 2000 Legacy Outback. She kept glaring at me the whole time it was on her car, so I removed it after a couple days. At one point someone told her she had a nice rack. She didn't know how to respond. :-p

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very cool build. Looks great.

 

 

Yes- I get the same rattle when I go over bumps. I figured the struts I swapped were either just old (especially that cushion that goes on it), OR the forester strut is bottoming out. Either way, I'll be putting new outback struts in. I'll let you know how that works on noise.

 

 

What exactly did you bang in to reduce rubbing on turns? I didn't hammer because I didn't want to damage anything..

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Your lift looks great. You got some good ride height. You have pulled it off better than most of the dirty impreza crowd with what they put together. (i.e. "the lift that wasn't" thread and similar)

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Rattling in the back going over bumps may be from the nuts not being tight that hold the strut rod into the strut cap. Some struts had a longer unthreaded portion where they go through the strut cap. The nut bottoms out on the threads before it actually touches the strut cap. Grinding a washer to fit in under the nut fixes it.

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yes, this is a good call. It most definitely requires a washer. But from my experience with and without one on the forester struts, it's more than just a minor rattle over a pothole...it sounds like the car will fall apart.

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$30. on Craigslist. The plan is to shorten it to fit within the stock bumper. Gotta take 9 inches out of the middle. I'll have to weld some plates to the front of the car to get a solid mounting surface.

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Yeah I think so. trouble is that it's stainless, so i can't just weld the ends back together. Gonna try an slide a smaller pipe under the original and bolt it all together as of now. Unless I can find someone who does cheap brazing.

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Ive welded stainless with regular steel wire before and it worked fine, might not be the best, but for somthing nonstructual like that brush guard you should be ok

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hee hee. This place is about 5 miles down the road from where I work. I got some funny looks from some granny types when I pulled over and snapped this picture. If my car ever needs a makeover, maybe these people can handle it.:lol:

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hee hee. This place is about 5 miles down the road from where I work. I got some funny looks from some granny types when I pulled over and snapped this picture. If my car ever needs a makeover, maybe these people can handle it.:lol:

That's really funny :grin:

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Man! That would fit perfect on the Ski wagon...! Nice find... :banana:

 

I gotta find something like that now!

 

you need to buy the Australian RooBar from me :)

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ahhh your car has me stoked to get my FXT struts in my obs this weekend! are you using the legacy outback subframe spacers? seems like your CVs would be screamin without em haha

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ahhh your car has me stoked to get my FXT struts in my obs this weekend! are you using the legacy outback subframe spacers? seems like your CVs would be screamin without em haha

 

They do ok with just the struts. If you add more than that, then you should use the subframe spacers.

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