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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I just completed the install of full S206 chassis enhancement parts and Rigid Collar.

For some (or many) of you these are controversial parts to install, but there may be some of you who are interested to know and I hope I can be of some help to assists in your decision making. The reason why I choose to use full S206 chassis parts and Rigid collar are based on experience, philosophy in car tuning, and curiosity.

Let's begin with the list of part numbers:

STI FLEXIBLE STRUT TOWER BAR(SG517FG101)
STI FLEXIBLE SUPPORT REAR(ST20156ZR000)
STI Flexible low stiffer RH/ LH(ST20118ZR000)


The above 3 parts can be ordered as a package under STI Performance Package, and the three parts above are 2011+ specific WRX STI. Pre 2011 STI have a different combinations of parts and is explained in Japanese STI website.

STI 20107C SUPPORT FRONT KIT(ST20106ZR000)
STI FLEXIBLE DRAW STIFFENER, REAR(ST20168ZR000)


The support front kit is actually a part of STI Performance Package for pre 2011 WRX STI, while the rear flexible draw stiffener is a part STI Performance package for Subaru Forester STI. The 5 parts above completes the S206 chassis enhancement parts.

SPOON SPORTS RIGID COLLAR KIT, FRONT(45230SN0100)
SPOON SPORTS RIGID COLLAR KIT, REAR(45230SN0200)


So why those STI parts?

I have a philosophy that a sports car should be a fun and easy car to handle for the driver, and therefore the car must be comfortable, communicative and responsive. It is important for me to know where and what the tires are doing and where it is pointing at from the feel of the steering and seat. Stiffening up the chassis and suspension leads to this, but the art is how to increase the performance while retaining or even improving the level of comfort also, because after all the car is a street car.

Thankfully STI did all the homework for me, because a long time ago I was reading about S206 STI and the reviewer(s) praised the level of poise and sharpness of its handling and yet somehow it is a comfortable car.

Subaru Impreza STI S206 review | Evo

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPWqOH-A72o

I could have go on my own way by applying what I know from past successful experience in achieving this goal into my STI, but as far as I know STI is the only manufacturer who use flexible parts to improve the chassis. I admit it takes awhile to digest the STI's tuning concept as it contradict to everything I know about suspension/chassis tuning, but as soon as I understand the concept I decided it is worth to give the STI parts a go, and experience it for myself. And why not, because their philosophy is in-line to mine.

What about the Rigid Collar you asked? Does it really work?

Well, I also own a Golf MK6 TSI 1.4L Twincharger - and anyone who used to own or own a MK5/6 Golf would know about its shifting subframe issue. And the reason why it shifted is because of what Spoon have shown in their video about Rigid Collar.


Back then I was really pissed off with the issue of shifting subframe and was willing to try anything to fix it - and let me assure you the only way to fix it is by the use of rigid collar (the version I use for my VW is by Tyrol Sport). What surprised me was the increased level of comfort, more feel of the chassis, and the suspension feels like it grew a new set of muscle to handle - and it does all that while fixing the shifting subframe issue. Ever since then rigid collar mod is one of my essential must-have, because it really work.


Does the STI really needs all those parts?

As much as I like my STI - this car in standard form is pretty muted. There is no sense of communication between it and me. The steering is vague, the suspension feels inconsistent, and it doesn't turn to the rate of the steering input. I am not a professional driver like Tommy Makkinnen who can bring out the best out of the car, so I need help from the car to at least talk to me and let me know what its doing.

So to me, yes the STI needs all those parts in order to be acceptable to me. And I didn't give up on it because I know despite my complain about the car, the car has talent waiting to be discovered.


Added STI Lateral link http://www.iwsti.com/forums/gr-suspension-handling-stiffening/277392-complete-s206-chassis-enhancement-parts-rigid-collar-review-5.html#post4112600
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

So the first thing to do is to install the rigid collar, and this involves lowering the subframe so it is enough to slide in the collar between the subframe and the chassis.


There are 4 bolts for the subframe, 2 on each side of left and right and each bolt gets 2 collars. One above the subframe, and the other one below the subframe.


Once done, carefully tigthen the each bolt in cross manner and torque it to spec. Job done, it is time to move on to the STI front subframe support.

There are three parts to install; 2 rod bars and one plate at the front. The kit comes complete with nuts, bolts, washers and spacers.



Piece of cake, but I should add the Cusco steering rack brace is too thick for the rod to be bolted in - however it is possible to bolt it in as the rod will bent ever so slightly. I just slowly tighten the two bolts on each end of the rod, and in it goes.

Once done, it is time to install the front flexible draw stiffener (FDS).

Install the brackets and line up the FDS and secure it into place. Loosen up the FDS adjustment lock nut as there is adjustment to be made for the FDS to suit 2011 chassis.


The manual stated for type A~B give 4.5mm pre-pre tension, while type C give it 3.0mm pre tension. So what is A~B and C? Well, if we look at Japanese STI website Type A~B is the 2008 - 2010 STI, while C is 2011+ STI. So looks like 08 to 10 STI can also be mated with this kit with the right pre-tension adjustment of the FDS.

To adjust, simply turn the rod turnbuckle until the groove begins to move, and keep going until there is a 3.0mm gap (or 4.5mm gap for pre facelift) between the groove and the bulk head of the FDS. Once done, tighten the adjustment lock nut, and make sure each balljoint is facing dead center to its respective direction (just like adjusting an adjustment endlink). The FDS is like a suspension. If you pull it out and then release it, the rod will slide back in. There's quite a bit of force in there too.


Put the cover back on and the job for the front is completed! Easy!


Moving on to the rear, and unfortunately I forgot to the a photo of the rigid collar install. The rear rigid collar is installed on where subframe bushings are. Like the front, there are 2 collars for each of the 4 bolts, and the process of the install is exactly the same.

Now here's another party piece of the STI Performance Package, a flexible rear support replacing the OEM rear support. Confused? So do I, but installing it is a matter of replacing the old with the new. Oh, it comes with new bolts too.


And now it is time to install the final piece; the rear FDS. Ok so this part is part of Forester SH STI Performance Package, but it fits because the SH shares the same chassis floor with the GR/GV. It comes with 8 brackets in total, and some stacks on top of each other.


Like the front FDS, the rear FDS needs to be adjusted also and the manual stated 3.0mm pre tensioning. Once done, tighten up the lock nut and trim the under carriage cover.


And once done, take some irrelevant but cool shot of the car before taking it for wheel alignment.


Wheel alignment result is very good. I do not have the print out with me so I can't show any picture of it. The left and right camber/caster are basically the same for its Left and Right, and likewise the rear camber. Before the rigid collar I have slightly lower caster value for the front right, not anymore! The rear camber before rigid collar was slightly off on the left I think, and now is sorted. Time for a drive.

Other handling modifications done for the car:
Superpro 22/22 swaybar, front set to hard rear on medium.
Whiteline F/R adjustable endlinks - swaybar preload removed.
Superpro caster bushing
Superpro Roll Center Adjuster
Superpro rear subframe bushing inserts
Superpro Steering rack bushing
Group N engine mounts set
Cusco steering rack brace

Wheels & Tires:
Enkei GTC-01 19x8.5 +42
Yokohama AD08R 245/35/19
Tire pressure 35psi front and 32psi rear

I never provided any review for the rest of the suspension modifications - but they have improved the car's handling also. The key important part is remove the swaybar pre-load. Given the choice I would go for soft setting for the rear, but the whiteline endlink don't really match the rear swaybar holes position and I haven't found the happy setting for using soft swaybar setting yet. So at this point medium setting is the better choice as I am able to remove the pre-load in that position.

The driving impression below is after adding the STI and Spoon's parts on top of the parts above.

Low speed driving impression

The road in where I live is pretty uneven and plenty of bumps and holes to be avoided. The ride comfort is so much better now as the car quickly settles down and absorbs uneven road like a champ. Prior to this, the car would shake and bounce in unsettling manner. Oh yeah and I have this buzzing noise on the dash and it is gone too. I have no idea what was buzzing on the dash whenever I was driving on the road, but it is gone and that's the end of one other problem. The steering is meaty and much more precise to the turn, and since now I can feel the chassis and tires it is a lot easier to place the car where I wanted it. The car just feels composed and relaxed. Hell it feels like a different car.

High speed driving impression

There is no speed limit in where I live, so I am free to do whatever I want at my own risk. So to have fun with speed I hop into the toll way and went for it. Now it feels proper as just like during low speed driving, at high speed driving the car just settles nice and quick. Not only that, the steering at high speed is very direct now. Prior to this, whenever I try to zig zag my way through traffic at high speed, it feels like there is a delay for the car to actually change lane after I turn the steering wheel. It made me having to think during cornering, but not anymore. Now I do not have to think as I simply just have to aim and turn - and the car will go to where I want it to and it can immediately change direction fast and smooth as soon as I commanded it to. Since I know where the 4 tires are, driving the car at high speed feels a lot safer too, and I gained a lot more confidence in driving the car.

So obviously I am very happy with the purchase, and hopefully it can be of some help for any of you guys who are interested with the STI parts and Spoon's Rigid Collar parts. What the reviewer(s) experienced when driving the S206 - I now experienced the same thing they experienced with the combination of STI and Spoon's rigid collar parts. It really turned my STI into something that is more refined and it just feels right. The suspension reacts and responds better, the chassis is feelsome and communicative, the steering is direct and responsive, and the level of comfort is improved - and I am still on standard spring/shock.

It is too bad I missed out for the Bilstein/STI NBR Challenge damper kit as it is now discontinued, but I can always go for something else as there are many to choose from as an alternative. But whatever spring/shocks/coilovers I would ended up with later, I now know for sure the chassis is ready as it now has the level of excellence to allow upgraded shocks/springs/coilover to work as intended as stiffer suspension works better on stiffer chassis.

So that is all from me, and I hope it can be of some help for you guys who are interested in the STI and Spoon's parts, but perhaps still undecided or need more information about the products.
 

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Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

Very awesome, wonder how this compares to the new 2015 STI chassis. Never knew about the rigid collars, that was every educational.

Some S206 love
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

Actually I forgot to add the strut bar photo, but everyone knows the STI flexible strut bar right?

Well here goes:

 

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Discussion Starter #5
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

Very awesome, wonder how this compares to the new 2015 STI chassis. Never knew about the rigid collars, that was every educational.

Some S206 love
movie

Yes that is the video that I watched and the way it handles bumps and how it corners convinced me to try the STI S206 parts. They're not making things up~!
 

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Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

The front setup (braces/rods) looks like it is similar in mounting/purpose as the common "H" braces used on the GR.

I wasn't 100% clear but do you use the collars on the 4 front frame bolts?

Which WL end links are you running? The KLC 039 wiki reach all holes...you can find them on eBay and Cygnus Perf.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

Each subframe bolt will enter through 2 collars, and the collars are installed on:

1. between the chassis and the subframe
2. below the subframe.

I use KLC182, balljoint type adjustable endlink.

If I position the endlink for soft setting via the gold spacers, the balljoint end stud falls between soft and medium. No good. Likewise if I move the endlink for medium setting, the balljoint end stud would not line up to meet the middle hole. I can make it reach the soft setting by slightly forcing it - but if I do this I could never find the no pre-load setting.

However if I position the endlink for soft swaybar setting, and if i move the swaybar slightly towards the front of the car, the balljoint end stud can enter the middle swaybar setting. This way I can find the no preload setting via adjusting the adjustment endlink's turnbuckle. This is much2 better than selecting the softest swaybar setting. The ride is much more comfortable than if I force it to enter the soft swaybar setting.

What I think will work is the use of spherical balljoint as this would allow the endlink to tilt back and forth on the arm, allowing more angle and range to reach the holes on the swaybar bar. But I can't find any endlink with spherical balljoint that provides dust boot for protection.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

Yeah, spherical would definitely work, but I would prefer it if the spherical is made by Aurora as the last time I use Whiteline's spherical joint the damn thing just won't last.

But nevermind the endlink for now.

Right now I am just amazed with the positive changes made by the STI parts~! : D

If we look at TRD and STI tune for GT86 and BRZ respectively the TRD parts are about solid chassis bracing, while STI stick with flexible chassis bracing, and I wish there is a review for the TRD GT86 vs BRZ STI Ts.

I know it would be difficult for me to choose if I own GT86/BRZ because I am a big fan of TRD parts also as I used to own MY00 Celica GT-S with a selection of TRD goodies installed. And now I am a big fan of STI parts also. Choosing between the two would be diffficult!

Actually, now that I think about it...TRD, Nismo, STI and Mugen, they all made excellent parts based on my experience.
 

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Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

Where did you purchase your collar sets? Do you have a link?

Can you explain the specifics of the front collar installation a little more? Did you do this on a lift (chassis lift)? What other components besides the cross brace were removed or detached to install the collars? For example, did you need to remove or loosen the inner mounting point of the lower control arms, steering rack, etc? I assume that you loosened one side at a time and installed the inserts, then did the other side...if not how did you install and how did you support the cross member during the process?

Really interested but need to better understand the procedure. Thx.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

You can buy the Spoon's Rigid Collar fromhttps://www.japanparts.com/parts/list.php?adt=1&dl=1&cm=162&md_sm=&pm=62&skwd1=

Or, alternatively buy SMY's version SMY Performance Rigid Collar 2011-2014 Subaru WRX & STI

Here's how its done:

1. lift the entire car up, and I recommend using a lift for better working area.

2. Place a support under the oem brace, like using transmission jack or subframe jack.

3. Loosen all 4 bolts, but do not remove them.

4. My car is RHD, and I start from the left side. I further loosen the 2 bolt on the left side of the subfame by around up to 2 inches.

5. lower the subframe slowly and check the clearance between subframe and chassis.

6. With enough clearance, I remove the front left bolt first. Lube the collars with the supplied copper grease and insert the collar into the chassis (read the manual carefully for the specific collar to be inserted). Now insert the lower collar into the bolt, and smear some of the copper grease onto the bolt.

7. Insert the bolt and begin to thread it in very slowly and giving it a slight pressure to go up because the collar is tappered and the bolt will have to go through the collar before it meets the thread in the chassis. Stop if the bolt refuses to go in, and check if the collar inserted into the chassis has moved etc. Just take your time to do this and you will know when the bolt has reached the threaded part. Do not completely thread in the bolt at this point.

8. Now move on the left side rear bolt, and repeat the process on step 7.

9. Once both bolts entered the chassis, I thread in both bolts (one at a time) to go higher until it is just a snug fit.

10. Move on to do the right side, and repeat steps 4 to 9.

11. Once all 4 bolts are in, I use the subframe jack to give it a bit of pressure to slightly lift the subframe so it is pressed onto the chassis. I then gently and evenly tighten the bolt in cross manner , then finally torque it down to spec.


The Spoon's manual shows a picture of the steering rack, which I believe it means to loosen the steering rack much like if you are to do the steering rack bushing. But I didn't do that as I was able to have just enough clearance to insert the collar between the subframe and the chassis.

The same steps goes for the rear, and the rear is pretty much like how you would do a subframe bushing inserts. I may have forgotten to list some of the steps but basically that's what I did.

I hope that helps~!
 

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Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

great write up!

Since my honda days and the first install i attended i always wondered why it doesn't come like this from the factory.

I now, cost and so on.
But still. Car manufacturer advertise with handling as well so it just isn't logical to cheap out on it..
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

great write up!

Since my honda days and the first install i attended i always wondered why it doesn't come like this from the factory.

I now, cost and so on.
But still. Car manufacturer advertise with handling as well so it just isn't logical to cheap out on it..
Yeah, I too think manufacturer should at least do this for their special edition model. I know there are holes on the subframe for alignment purposes, but the subframe can shift anytime during driving which can be unnoticed - unless you drive a VW Golf MK5/6.

I never think about shifting subframe until I own MK6 Golf, and it was very annoying when the subframe was shifted, because once the subframe is shifted the car will drive like an ass and there are clacking noises under the car where the front subframe is. That kind of effects due to shifting subframe would not go unnoticed.

But as I said, using rigid collars would improve the handling and comfort. This I know very well.

I could go on with my review but I do not want to make it sound like I am over exaggerating about the result, especially since I put everything together it would probably sounded like I am making things up as to which part offers which improvements. And it is especially difficult to explain how the rigid collar works as it is seemingly a simple things, and how can STI flexible chassis part works because traditionally solid bars are the what's used for chassis bracing.

So maybe I can further summarize it like this:

1. Rigid Collar offers improvements in chassis rigidity and handling stability, by locking and 'bonding' the subframe together with the chassis. We know rigid chassis would allow the suspension to work at optimum because there's no interruption for the shocks/springs to do its job absorbing bumps and uneven surfaces. This is what results in greater ride comfort, plus because the chassis and subframe is so well connected to each other the feel of the road is better translated through the steering and seat. And because the subframe and the chassis is literally one, the responsiveness of the chassis is increased as any potential 'delay' is minimized or completely eliminated.

2. STI S206 chassis parts is everything a chassis bar would be, except it not only works when it is required to work, but it also kinda works like a suspension for the chassis. Be it no doubt the chassis is stiffer but it can also absorb / cancel deflections, where as using solid bar the chassis would not absorb deflections which made a car feels edgy.

At least, that's the best I could describe the feeling of the STI S206 parts, because the way the car changes direction now is pretty graceful and elegant so to say. Perhaps the following analogy can help better understand what I mean.

With a solid bar when I ask the car to take a corner it would say:
"FINE! OK, I'll do it! GEEEZ!!"

With STI flexible part the car would say:
"YEAPP! Let's doooo ittttt~! Yaaaay!"

Both setups will do it, but one setup is very happy to do it while the other would feel bothered to do it. Is like telling someone to do something and you appreciate the person who is more than happy to do it, than the person who couldn't be arsed to do it but did it anyway.

I went for a late night high speed hooning again last night and the way the car drives is just so fun and nice. It is a playful thing now, and one that obeys instructions very well. And again I am still on standard shocks/springs, and is a big surprise to me because suddenly the standard shocks/springs feels great. I don't mean that literally, but it really does feels great and I swear it can handle bumps at high speed better than my Golf's highly modified suspension setup running on Bilstein PSS10 coilover - which is a very comfortable car despite the suspension modifications.



So you guys can see why I am a bit reluctant to go to too many details right?
 

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Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

What I find most appealing is the fact that the product would ensure that the cross member is in the correct location. I've never felt as though the cross member was moving but if dropping in a few metal inserts can aid the driving then I'm all for it.

By the way, do the instructions provide cross member bolt torque specs..if not, do you know what they are?

I'm currently running RCE T2 coil overs (500# frt/rr springs) with 22mm Super Pro sway bars and they really do improve the overall handling with only slightly firmer than oem ride. Running a lower "H" front brace and a rear GTspec "triangle" brace for the rear subframe so a different execution but similar approach.

Thanks for all the info.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

Day 3 - Comparing the STI against the Golf Mk6.

After the late night hooning last night and saying to myself that the STI is now able to handle bumps and uneven surfaces at high speed better than my Golf MK6, I can't help to think maybe I was wrong. So I figured the only way to find out is to take the Golf for a drive and maybe I can get a better perspective as the memory of how well the STI's ride control is still fresh in my mind.

And now that I just driven the Golf, I figured perhaps I should share my finding to describe just how well the S206 chassis parts really are. In short, I ended up being more in awe towards the STI S206 chassis parts.

But a comparison like this is meaningless without describing the what's been done to the Golf. So please bare with me while I go on about the Golf for a little bit.

The Golf Mk6


As with all the cars I have owned in the past, the Golf is setup for great balance of daily driving and circuit track days; comfortable, communicative and responsive. Suffice to say the Golf has come a long way from its standard form to its current state of tune. And below are the list of suspension parts fitted to the Golf:

Bilstein PSS10
H&R swaybars F:26mm/R:22mm
Unibrace chassis bracing (UB,XB,RB)
Ultra Racing front strut bar
Tyrol rigid collars for front, and Stiff Ring rigid collars for rear
Powergrid adjustable endlinks front and rear
Superpro front LCA bushings including anti lift kit bushings
Superpro roll center adjuster
Ground Control camber plate
Powerflex torque arm inserts bushings
SSW 18x8 +35
Michellin Pilot Sports 3

The Golf is my daily driver for the last 3 years and it still is today. Over the years I honed the suspension setup so it is safe to drive at high speed of 200km/h+. And I mean really drive it at constant high speed and not just a single pull and back off. The point of mentioning all this is the car must have a great ride control and high limits in handling, which the Golf did very well indeed.

So how does it compare to the STI?


For now I like to talk just on high speed driving ride control.

If I didn't add those S206 chassis parts and Rigid Collars, the Golf would easily be my choice for high speed driving. But that is expected as the suspension setup is at a higher state of tune. But I did not know until now just how well the S206 chassis parts are able to tame the body flex and movement to improve the ride control and comfort of the STI. The STI is just on another level higher.

What I now realized only after driving the STI last night and driving the Golf today, is how much body movement the Golf has during high speed driving compared to the STI. The strange part is I never noticed this before, or maybe it never bothered me before because I didn't know any better. But now I surely do noticed it and now it really bothered me. I mentioned having a solid bar chassis braces can make a car feels edgy and it is perfectly acceptable (to me at least) as solid bar chassis brace can also improves the ride comfort when a car is equipped with a stiffer suspension. Except now I know there is a better way to deal with chassis flex; the STI way.

There is no sense of fear when I was driving the STI even when the road was wet from rain last night. It just feels so much more confident than ever before. On that very same road I did not noticed the bumps as much as I did with the Golf today. Actually, I did not feel much of the bumps at all now that I think about it. Well I certainly don't remember it being a bumpy ride last night. It really is that good.

And honestly, I never experienced what I experienced with S206 chassis parts. It is very different to cars I had in the past and currently own with solid braces. There is high sense of delight to the way it ride and corner. Maybe this kind of high level of suspension control is available in higher end cars, but it certainly changed the way I think about what is possible to be done to a car though modifications. The ride is so comfortable and that is quite amazing for such a car like STI. The S206 chassis parts certainly did exceeded my expectations because I would not have thought it will ride better than my Golf.

Truth is I never imagined the STI could ever ride better than my Golf because of how stiff the STI chassis is compared to the Golf. Even if I changed the shocks and springs to say something like Bilstein PSS10 I always think it will still be a rougher ride than the Golf.

Compared to TRD, Nismo, and Mugen, I think STI is just about my current favorite in-house tuner right now.

And while I am in the mood for STI, I just ordered the STI lateral links kit as this is the closest I would ever get to try S206 setup. It would be interesting to see how it performs. Oh speaking about S206 setup, it is also interesting to know the STI engineers choose to use 15:1 steering ratio and not the 13:1 steering ratio for the S206 STI.

Now I have to find time to take my STI for a track day and have a blast~!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

What I find most appealing is the fact that the product would ensure that the cross member is in the correct location. I've never felt as though the cross member was moving but if dropping in a few metal inserts can aid the driving then I'm all for it.

By the way, do the instructions provide cross member bolt torque specs..if not, do you know what they are?

I'm currently running RCE T2 coil overs (500# frt/rr springs) with 22mm Super Pro sway bars and they really do improve the overall handling with only slightly firmer than oem ride. Running a lower "H" front brace and a rear GTspec "triangle" brace for the rear subframe so a different execution but similar approach.

Thanks for all the info.
Yes, the Spoon's rigid collar comes with torque spec. Everything you need to know is in the manual but the manual is in Japanese. So perhaps just compare the torque value against Subaru's service manual.

Running coilover will certainly improve he overall handling, but honestly I would never imagined just by using chassis bracing would improve the ride so much. The S206 chassis parts are truly special to me.

To the very least I can enjoy the car without having to change the shocks and springs for now, because there are so many choices out there and I am juggling between the many choices. Nothing worse than buying the wrong parts~!
 

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Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

I've done some searching for the Spoon front collar set and a have a few questions regarding part for 2011 STI LHD.

1) Since I don't read Japanese having some trouble locating the correct part number. I've tried looking for the front collar set and have received conflicting info. The site that you provided the link to shows pn 50261-ZN6-000 for 08/09 STI and 45230SN0100 for 10- (this is the one you listed). I went to another site with a spoon listing and it indicated 50261-GRB-000 for GV (2011). Is there a difference for LHD and RHD?

2) I see that the 2 rear collars closest to the firewall are the same but the 2 forward collars are both different than those by the firewall. Also the left and right forward collars are different from one another. Do you know whether there is any difference between RHD and LHD as to which side the forward collars go? Is the difference between the front collars obvious, i.e. different diameters or other notable characteristics?

3) You indicated that steering knuckle did not need to be loosened/removed for your install. Can you indicated about how much you needed to lower the cross member ( 1", 2", ?) to insert the collars?

4) Was it obvious that the cross member was "out of place" and had moved...ie, paint scraping, bolt holes not centered when you did the initial inspection? Did the cross member require much adjusting/realignment for the bolts to line up after the collars were installed?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

Hmm, I am not sure about part number as all I did was select the car model based on year (mine is sedan 2011) using Japanparts.com search tool, and order the Spoon Rigid collar shown in their search result. No problems with the part, and I do not think there will be a difference between LHD and RHD.

About the steering rack; now I remember the mechanic who helped me that day did remove a small bolt. Could that be the steering rack bolt? I apologize if I misled you as I didn't mentioned I got a help from a mechanic that day to speed up the job! But just loosen the steering rack if you have to in order to lower the subframe, and I didn't lower the subframe much at all (anywhere up to 2inches, no more).

I can't read Japanese either, but the manual is very clear in showing which collar is to be installed at which location and in which direction.

The following is what mine is like:

For the front, the 4 collars to go between subframe and chassis (upper collar) are silver in color and all 4 are the same, so it doesn't matter which one to use.

But the collars for between bolt and subframe (lower collar) comes in 2 shapes; 2 x collars and 2 x ring. The ring shape is for the front bolt while the collar shape is for the rear position (closest to firewall).

I do not think a subframe shift is obvious on most car, and if it wasn't because of my Golf MK6 I would never think about it. But based on my experience with the Golf; to check if your subfame have shifted or not, look for shift mark between the chassis and the subframe. Or, loosen up just one bolt and check out the bolt mark on the subframe - which you can also tell whether or not the subframe is dead center or not.

Like this:

"This picture perfectly shows the problem the Rigid Collars address. You can see how the subframe has moved around and the bolt is far from centered, not to mention the offset bolt marks left on the subframe."

Or check your wheel alignment. Caster and camber will give a hint whether or not your sub-frame is dead center or not, and it helps to compare the figure based on your last good wheel alignment. My caster was lower on one side after the workshop who installed my downpipe for some reason needed to lowered my subframe (there, see they didn't bother aligning the subframe by the alignment hole on the subframe). This is corrected once the rigid collar is on.
 

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Re: Complete S206 chassis enhancement parts + Rigid Collar review

I always love bloody detailed suspension upgrade mod posts. Everyone seems to want >>>400whp, everyone wants a turbo so big they need to locate it in the trunk as it won't fit under the hood. That's all well and good, but my personal preference is the handling department which is what sets up the better performing STi's on track days, autocross, or back roads.

You can play and pass 100k big boys armed with Hoosier's and a well sorted suspension (well done coilovers, bushings, aggressive alignment, properly selected swaybars etc). These type of chassis mods don't really increase the limit (much), they tend to matter only at higher speeds if they increase any performance, and even then mostly with slicks.

However, what they do help at all levels is increase the feedback to tell you exactly where the limit is and with some experience to instantly "snap" into the proper reaction to regain control the instant you reach the limit instead of snap oversteer out of control or worse. If properly done, these chassis mods can be so good that you will know exactly when approaching the limit and this benefit holds at all speeds and all driving modes, 2/10, 5/10, 8/10 or up to 10/10. You might even possibly spend an entire autocross almost never hitting a cone and always staying within the course without spinning out etc.
 
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