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KawBoyz11 03-16-2009 10:01 PM

Cheap suspension upgrades
Hey wanting some advice on some cheaper suspension parts than i can get to help with handling, mainly with hanging corners at higher speeds. where i live theres a ton of winding country roads. Cars a 2004 WRX with cobb front and rear sway bars(22 mm) kartboy end links, and Potenza Pole Position 225/45r/17 tires on 17 inch rota torque wheels.

Ive been thinking about trying to find a wreck 04 Sti in a junkyard and swiping some of its suspension parts. Ive heard upgrading to the Sti control arms helps out and im curious if this is true.

Anyways im just wanting some ideas of cheaper ways to upgrade my suspension. thanks for the opinions.

man show 03-16-2009 11:18 PM

Well, you already have the #1 (better tires) and #2 (swaybars and end links) arguably biggest suspension improvements covered... maybe you could look into some aftermarket polyurethane bushings to stiffen things up or a relatively inexpensive set of (used?) springs? If you go that route though, you might also have to upgrade your struts too, so that can get sort of expensive with the alighment and installation - unless you do it yourself, etc. You could also look into chassis braces. I think the main difference between WRX and STi control arms is that the WRX ones are steel/heavier and the STi ones are aluminum/lighter/stronger. I guess it'll save you a little weight, but it sounds like it'll be more work than the gains you'll get will be worth. But yeah, it is something else you could do.

On a side note, could you please post a pic of your black WRX with the Rota Torques? I want to see how it looks because I'm still considering getting a set of these too. Thanks!

KawBoyz11 03-17-2009 02:54 AM

thanks for the input man show. i know that the tires and swaysbars are the 2 best things i couldve done. i dont know, i might save up and get some shocks and struts, and some strut tower bracings.

ill make sure to get some pics up for you. i really like the rotas, they look great on the car. i decided to go with the gunmetal instead of the flat black, and i cant be happier with the look.

oldfartracer 03-17-2009 08:38 AM

I would agree with rubber first and then swaybars. Then look into springs and stuts, take you time here and research. The STI spring and strut are about 15% stiffer than the WRX, not huge upgrade.
You could also look into fender braces, and a H brace. The polyurethane bushings are a nice upgrade, but this could make the ride to stiff for a DD. I have done a lot suspension upgrades and my car handles great, but is very stiff and noisy. It is not the best for a DD for long trips.

c2bcoolwrx 03-17-2009 12:29 PM

If your not concerned about SCCA/AutoX class then get an ALK. I have the Whiteline ALK (comfort version) and that made a nice difference in my handling, as it keeps the car more planted (anti-lift) and lets you go into/out of turns faster. Its costs about $200. Also, fender cowling braces are nice upgrade too. You can find both at:

[url=]Helping you to enjoy your car - Turn In Concepts[/url]

TIC is one of the best places to get suspension upgrades and they are very knowledgable. Give then a call (ask for Clint he really knows his ****).

KawBoyz11 03-17-2009 02:08 PM

thanks for the positive impact guys

c2bcoolwrx, i dont plan on scca but ive thought about auto xing. ive also looked into the Whiteline ALK but hadnt heard anyone talk about it really. $200 bucks seems relatively inexpensive. i might have to look deeper into the ALK.

c2bcoolwrx 03-18-2009 12:31 AM

The ALK along w/Whiteline steering rack bushings are 2 of my favorite upgrades, great bang for the buck.

KawBoyz11 03-18-2009 01:44 AM

[quote=c2bcoolwrx;217603]The ALK along w/Whiteline steering rack bushings are 2 of my favorite upgrades, great bang for the buck.[/quote]

Thanks for the help man. i think im gonna save up some money and try both of em out

Khooper 03-27-2009 08:25 PM

koni special dampers will help too if you get good springs. I think someone makes a complete set of urathane bushings for b11's, I just got a set for my datsun and they were under $300 for everything.
great [URL=""]automotive parts[/URL]

Exarch 04-03-2009 05:11 AM

In the interest of expense I'd look into the various bushings and the like before looking into other items. You can get a lot more twisty fun for the dollar out of some good bushings than out of many other mods.

Not to be contradictory to man show above, I'd steer clear of used springs, as a complete new set is not extremely expensive. That and with something which plays such a pivotal role in your suspension, it's not something I would personally find a good idea to go that route with. I would also take into consideration that if you move to a spring with a higher rate than your current ones, you're going to wear your dampers out faster, which is more money out of pocket.

As far as the control arms go, I belive man show is correct, the STi parts are aluminum vice the WRX steel, this should reduce flex and improve cornering capability.

man show 04-03-2009 11:06 AM

Thanks for being gentile. You've avoided hurting my feelings. :)

I agree with you too, since generally, I am a believer in buying new products if funding allows for it. I would be more worried about buying a set of used struts than a set of used springs since I think the springs usually last a really long time.

mosc 04-03-2009 11:57 AM

[quote=man show;218970]I agree with you too, since generally, I am a believer in buying new products if funding allows for it. I would be more worried about buying a set of used struts than a set of used springs since I think the springs usually last a really long time.[/quote]I agree with this. Springs should last a decade and 100k+ miles no problem. The biggest killer of springs is rust, not wear. If they look clean, they're probably still fine. Save some money there. As far as struts go, I think that's where it's a bigger deal to buy new. It's real hard to see how worn a strut is.

As for STi only being 15% stiffer, to me that's a lot. I drove my WRX around for several years and it's a pretty agressive suspension to begin with. When I bought my STi, it had Tien H-tech springs and stock struts which is extremely uncomfortable on a bumpy road for your passengers. I'm changing back to stock springs this weekend. I think the STi spring and strut (make sure it's from an 04 STi if you're putting it on a WRX) is an excellent middle ground between performance and comfort. Especially if you rarely if ever track the thing, I think the Sti spring/strut is pretty much ideal for daily use. It's already pretty damn firm. It's also one of the few upgrades you can do without sacrificing a lot of clearance (although it does drop your suspension SOME).

07VTRex 04-03-2009 12:27 PM

BUSHINGS!!! get every single bushing you possible can for everything suspension and drivetrain related. Even engine and tranny mounts will make the feeling of your car much more stable and predictable, thus better handling.

But for the Cheap, get a complete bushings kit, and then get every one that kit didnt include.

man show 04-03-2009 11:02 PM

Somebody likes bushings ;)

blk02wrx 04-21-2009 12:47 PM

i think bushing first. the most important ones are the engine and tranny mounts along with the pitch stopper. (i have the group n) and diff bushing (i have turn in consepts) and then steering rack bushing and whatever else you decide after doing some research for what you want. make sure you don't get talked into somthing you don't need or want as just because someone else has something dosn't mean it's for you. but of coarse tires as said before and good sways(i have cobb 25mmf+r) and i would say thats all you need. for a street car i wouldn't bother with struts or spring unless they are worn out and if that are i would just get gr-2 kyb"s (even though i went with kyb agx) lol so just go with what you want but i would go with bushing and tires first.

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