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This is a discussion on Help me on the long quest to dailydrivenperfection within the Engine Modifications forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Originally Posted by super_usdm Id skip the AOS and the EL header Uh, the ELH is one of the best ...

  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by super_usdm View Post
    Id skip the AOS and the EL header
    Uh, the ELH is one of the best bang-for-your-buck mods out there.

    Also, I completely disagree with your assessment. When you upgrade power, you should upgrade your cornering and stopping capability simultaneously.
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  3. #17
    Registered User super_usdm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zax View Post
    Uh, the ELH is one of the best bang-for-your-buck mods out there.
    Agreed, and he did say he wants to overbuild it... and the Holy Header... oh my.. I do want one.

    Quote Originally Posted by zax View Post
    Also, I completely disagree with your assessment. When you upgrade power, you should upgrade your cornering and stopping capability simultaneously.
    Im sure a lot of people do. So here's my arguemen: the WRX comes from the factory as a fairly well-balanced car. On a daily driven car people can use 100% of the available power very easily. What percentage of the available braking and handling capabilities would you say people use on a daily basis, or even a yearly basis? Its unsafe to push those areas to the limit on the street, and if the cars never going to see a track in its foreseable future, the extra performance of brake and handling upgrades will go unused.

    Rebuttal... GO!

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    Quote Originally Posted by super_usdm View Post
    Agreed, and he did say he wants to overbuild it... and the Holy Header... oh my.. I do want one.



    Im sure a lot of people do. So here's my arguemen: the WRX comes from the factory as a fairly well-balanced car. On a daily driven car people can use 100% of the available power very easily. What percentage of the available braking and handling capabilities would you say people use on a daily basis, or even a yearly basis? Its unsafe to push those areas to the limit on the street, and if the cars never going to see a track in its foreseable future, the extra performance of brake and handling upgrades will go unused.

    Rebuttal... GO!
    I agree about the suspension mods. If you're daily driving it, you will want a good mix between stiffness and comfort. I imagine only minor mods, if any, to achieve this.

    However, brakes are essential. My friend souped up his Camaro, put everything into drivetrain mods, and a week later he was flying down the road, and didn't notice the light was red. Normally he should have been able to stop, but he was going fast AND his pads were worn, so he literally just drove right into the guy in front of him, it hardly looked like he tried to stop at all.

    Total system rehaul isn't necessary, but I think the recommendations mentioned before (steel brake lines, pads, etc.) are an excellent idea.

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    With regards to brakes, I believe that a properly maintained stock brake system will work just as good as any aftermarket or upgraded brake setup. That is, until you add heat. Normal street driving will not create enough heat to cause any deteriation in braking performance, it's more likely the tires will give way before the brakes do. I've experienced brake fade on the street only once. Why? Because I was being stupid.

    I agree that upgraded pads are a great idea, especially for those "oh ****" moments. But I would wait until I needed new pads to upgrade.

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    Quote Originally Posted by super_usdm View Post
    With regards to brakes, I believe that a properly maintained stock brake system will work just as good as any aftermarket or upgraded brake setup. That is, until you add heat. Normal street driving will not create enough heat to cause any deteriation in braking performance, it's more likely the tires will give way before the brakes do. I've experienced brake fade on the street only once. Why? Because I was being stupid.

    I agree that upgraded pads are a great idea, especially for those "oh ****" moments. But I would wait until I needed new pads to upgrade.
    Upgrade the tires. The stock tires are junk. Max out the camber.

    I'm going to agree that suspension and brake upgrades are a smart decision. Your argument assumes that you will not be pushing the car. If that is the case then why do any power mods at all? Stock power is plenty for the daily driving you are describing. If you are looking for over 300 whp then you are clearly not going to be driving the car like a granny.

    Also, the stock WRX does not come well balance from the factory IMO. I have driven one and they have way too much body roll for a spirited vehicle. It feels like a corolla with a turbo.

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    when it gets tuned i'll have EFI do an alignment. and some days i'll zone out and drive to work at 65, when i'm not stuck in traffic. but other days i realize i have a "fun" car and enjoy my time behind the wheel

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    Quote Originally Posted by super_usdm View Post
    the WRX comes from the factory as a fairly well-balanced car. On a daily driven car people can use 100% of the available power very easily. What percentage of the available braking and handling capabilities would you say people use on a daily basis, or even a yearly basis? Its unsafe to push those areas to the limit on the street, and if the cars never going to see a track in its foreseable future, the extra performance of brake and handling upgrades will go unused.

    Rebuttal... GO!
    That's not the point. If the car is well-balanced (which I disagree on this assessment), increasing the power output by 25% will push the car out of the limits of the balance. By nature, the car should always brake and corner at a higher rate of acceleration than the motor can provide. It's important to maintain that balance.

    As to why I disagree with the statement... the WRX has decent handling compared to an Accord or similar comfort sedan. However, it's not sports car. It does not handle like a sports car. It does not brake like a sports car. Frankly, the brakes are on the weak side for how the car is built. Even the top-model STi understeers rather badly at the limit (although this is safer than oversteer). These issues can be remedied with the proper modifications.
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    Registered User super_usdm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zax View Post
    That's not the point.
    No, thats not your point. It IS my point... But again a lot of people disagree.

    Quote Originally Posted by zax View Post
    If the car is well-balanced (which I disagree on this assessment), increasing the power output by 25% will push the car out of the limits of the balance. By nature, the car should always brake and corner at a higher rate of acceleration than the motor can provide. It's important to maintain that balance.

    As to why I disagree with the statement... the WRX has decent handling compared to an Accord or similar comfort sedan. However, it's not sports car. It does not handle like a sports car. It does not brake like a sports car. Frankly, the brakes are on the weak side for how the car is built. Even the top-model STi understeers rather badly at the limit (although this is safer than oversteer). These issues can be remedied with the proper modifications.
    I completely agree with all of this, but your're still referencing driving the car to its limit of braking and handling, which shouldnt (if you're smart) happen on the street. Just too many variables and unknown road conditions to risk a spin-out or a short off-road "excursion". By "well balanced", I wasn't referring to distribution of weight or under/oversteer characteristics. More that Subaru designed the car to have suspension and brakes that could handle the cars power (which isnt much these days, comparatively), when driven to its limit and factoring in hard braking and cornering. That being said, the stock brake pads and fluid that come with the car dont cut it in that scenario... Im sure they are made to be low dust, low noise, etc. so new buyers dont get pissed off. But, with a nice set of brake pads and some dot 4 fluid the stock brakes improve quite a bit over what they are when you drive the car off the lot, enough so that IMO they are sufficient for a strictly DD 300whp wrx...

    To each their own

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    my stock 2012 wrx was nowhere near balanced, that is why my first mod was sways and end links. I can drive. and with the stock power it was way too much body roll , very uncomfortable and very hard to maintain a line in a corner if your leaning that hard. (I drive lots of back roads in South Jersey). I am going to do many mods to my car and am aiming for 320-340 WHP. I knew I needed to upgrade my cornering first and foremost, so i did. Much better (eibach swaybar kit and KB end links) but the soft setting was still too soft for my comfort. and yes this is my DD... so now i have it on the stiffest setting and it is better, I now notice after reading this that I need to get at least stainless brake lines which had crossed my mind but I didnt think i would have to upgrade.

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    Quote Originally Posted by super_usdm View Post
    Im sure a lot of people do. So here's my arguemen: the WRX comes from the factory as a fairly well-balanced car. On a daily driven car people can use 100% of the available power very easily. What percentage of the available braking and handling capabilities would you say people use on a daily basis, or even a yearly basis? Its unsafe to push those areas to the limit on the street, and if the cars never going to see a track in its foreseable future, the extra performance of brake and handling upgrades will go unused.

    Rebuttal... GO!
    I honestly hate my handling and braking on my 2012. I knew it wouldn't be anything near as good as my two previous gen STIs, but I also knew I could purchase and install items to improve upon it. While the 2011+ WRX handles better than probably 85% of the average cars on the road, it leaves a LOT to be desired. If you are building a car to be more fun, more performance oriented, and a better corner carving daily driver, why would you skimp on arguably the weakest part of the car?

    If you say the braking and handling improvements would never be seen in daily use without pushing them to the limit, then why would the OP or anyone for that matter push power higher than any limits we'd ever use daily on everyday streets?

    I'm sorry but your point of view doesn't seem to make any sense to me.
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    Brakes are too heavy, that's why I took mine off.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikie13 View Post
    If you say the braking and handling improvements would never be seen in daily use without pushing them to the limit, then why would the OP or anyone for that matter push power higher than any limits we'd ever use daily on everyday streets?
    For added smiles getting on the freeway of course and the occasional straight line pull.

    Quote Originally Posted by wreckingball man View Post
    Brakes are too heavy, that's why I took mine off.
    Nice! the old BMX mindset! I hear ya.

    Either way, my opinion is just that, not fact. I'm out of touch with the newer model wrxs anyway so perhaps a lot has changed.

  14. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by super_usdm View Post
    I completely agree with all of this, but your're still referencing driving the car to its limit of braking and handling, which shouldnt (if you're smart) happen on the street. Just too many variables and unknown road conditions to risk a spin-out or a short off-road "excursion". By "well balanced", I wasn't referring to distribution of weight or under/oversteer characteristics. More that Subaru designed the car to have suspension and brakes that could handle the cars power (which isnt much these days, comparatively), when driven to its limit and factoring in hard braking and cornering. That being said, the stock brake pads and fluid that come with the car dont cut it in that scenario... Im sure they are made to be low dust, low noise, etc. so new buyers dont get pissed off. But, with a nice set of brake pads and some dot 4 fluid the stock brakes improve quite a bit over what they are when you drive the car off the lot, enough so that IMO they are sufficient for a strictly DD 300whp wrx...

    To each their own
    Fair enough. My car's handling is not well matched to my braking/power.
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    I personally enjoy Hawk HP+ for their performance to price ratio, with the trade-off being a considerable amount of dust and a bit of noise.

    As for springs and dampers, for daily use - I have yet to experience a better ride than with Tanabe S-0Cs. Valved very well for daily driving, while stiffening up nicely in corners - to put it simply they feel like they are built with very little high speed compression damping while exhibiting a good amount of low speed compression damping, soaking up bumps while providing very precise steering feedback and overall feel. I guess the drawback is that they are not damping adjustable (only ride height).

    Just my 2cents.

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