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95 Sambar F-50

Discussion in 'Subaru Sambar' started by Adam Wheeler, Feb 24, 2020.

  1. Adam Wheeler

    Adam Wheeler Member

    Well time has come to improve the ride just a little bit more. The OEM front springs are not handling the spring pothole weather nicely. Roads get heavily coated by salt in the winter time so when spring rolls around the potholes become outrageous. Dodging landmines everywhere you go up here. So I'll break this into two posts as I learned my lesson to take a spring out and accurately measure it instead of try and measure it on the truck with the wheel on.

    I ordered some 2.5" ID progressive springs from summit racing. I wanted progressive springs due to future plans for the truck and 2.5" seemed to be the only size I could find anywhere. Little did I know is that the I.D of Sambar springs is not in fact 2.5" I.D but 3" I.D. With that being said, I figured I still give it a go and see if we could make it work.

    The pictures will speak for themselves, I did manage to get the 2.5" springs on and installed however, the plastic cap would not sit on the inside of the spring as it was meant for 3", so I flipped it upside down, which may look really odd but it seemed to work. As you can see in the pictures the spring also is not seated correctly, again installed them and drove around on them and surprisingly the springs help up fine. The only issue with using the springs this way was that every time you turned the wheel the springs would make a pop and grind sound as they were actually spinning when turning, aside from that the ride was quite an improvement over the stock ones.

    Springs were: https://www.summitracing.com/parts/qa1-10ht225-475
     

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  2. Adam Wheeler

    Adam Wheeler Member

    After coming to terms with the fact that these springs are not going to work as they were long term. I sourced a few companies that actually made 3" I.D springs, unfortunately none of them made progressive springs.

    Landrum made a 3" I.D spring in many lengths are strengths. https://landrumspring.com/products/coil-springs/3-id-coilover/
    Draco Springs as well 3" I.D. https://www.purplespring.com/produc...er-springs-3-id-12-free-length-rates-50-1110/
    and Eibach - https://www.summitracing.com/parts/eib-10003000250s

    I decided to settle on the Eibach, as the other two companies didn't want to ship to Canada, and summit carried the Eibach springs and had stock. These springs couldn't fit more perfectly. They had a flattened end on both ends, unlike the tangential bottom on the stock springs, but even with the flat end the still sat in the seat well and don't shift like the 2.5 springs. I didn't even need to cut the springs at all. The truck now rides much better, handles better even with crosswinds, and the pothole shock is nowhere near as bad as it was.

    With just the 10" springs installed the truck now sits at 26 3/4" from ground to the bottom of the door measuring directly up the center of the wheel. The back was sitting at 25" even. With that I ordered the 2" lift kit from Mich mini trucks but only used and installed the rear portion. I shaved a little bit off the top of the plate, in hopes I don't experience the back end cv's falling apart as others have reported. All said and done the back now sits at 26 13/16". Prior to shaving down the top of the rear plate the back actually went up over 2" not sure if that was intentional or not but it caused the truck to sit a little raked, almost like a stock truck with no leveling kit in the front.

    I would like to remove the back lift plate eventually and only rely on a spring lift once I am able to source rear springs for this truck, something that is turning into somewhat of a real challenge as the rear springs have a top I.D of 3" and a bottom I.D of 3.5"
     

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  3. Limestone

    Limestone Active Member

    Adam,
    Some of this stuff is trial and error for all of us. I like how your posting it for many and all to learn from, if they choose! It's valuable info! Thanks
    Limestone
     
    Adam Wheeler likes this.
  4. Adam Wheeler

    Adam Wheeler Member

    Decided to check my oil catch can today after about three weeks of driving it almost daily around town with a few larger trips of 400km or more just to see if it was working correctly. Well it does look like its doing its job, there was a little bit of goop that came out and seems to be pulling a decent amount of condensation out as well due to the milkiness. I'm assuming this is due to the colder weather we still have up here, not allowing the condensation to burn off during the short town trips. Anyone who is familiar with these tiny engines, does anything stand out from the pictures as cause for concern? Oil in the pan is not milky, oil cap also doesn't have any milkiness on it.
     

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    Limestone likes this.
  5. Limestone

    Limestone Active Member

    Adam,
    I think your smart for doing that! Some might think it's overkill, but over killing it my whole life has worked for me!
    Limestone
     
  6. Adam Wheeler

    Adam Wheeler Member

    Few more updates to the little truck, I thought it was time for another modern touch for the mini truck so I added some power locks. Thought about power windows as well as the manual window cranks are on their way out and starting to crack at the base holding the spring clips to the door, but opted out of that conversion for now.

    Added some 1.5" wheel spacers to give it just a little bit more stance rather than having the wheels fully tucked. Updated the roof adding in some cab lights, was a tough decision to go for 4 even across the top or use all five positioned similar to North American trucks, opted for the latter.

    Finally, updated the yellow weathered headlights with a ceramic coating called Cerakote, which is supposedly suppose to last a really long time as its not penetrable to uv rays, but I guess we will see.
     

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    banzairx7 likes this.
  7. Limestone

    Limestone Active Member

    I like it! Keep on truckin!
    Limestone
     
  8. Adam Wheeler

    Adam Wheeler Member

    Well, it happened, the dreaded left rear cv joint failure. It happened while I was driving over a small culvert, had the left rear wheel in the air. A loud pop followed by grinding, get out take a look. Cv boot is destroyed and the Tripod joint is toast, spraying needle bearings all over the grass.

    In an attempt to see if any side by side cv axles could be matched up, I managed to come pretty close. After looking at every side by side, UTV & ATV I could find, I found that the Artic Cat ARC-7006 CV joint was almost identical in every way. 21 1/2" long, 27 spline on the the outbound side, and 24 spline on the inbound side the only problem being, that the inbound was a male and not female. ARC-7015 was the same just a tad longer at 21 7/8". With that I was forced to hunt the Japan wreckers for a new used one.

    Found one off a 1998 Sambar, and decided to give it a try. It showed up 3 days later, Beforward Auto Parts, while a tad bit pricier, their shipping time has been amazingly fast the past couple times Ive used them. I could already see this cv was much better. No more TJ and instead it was a DOJ, fit in like a glove. Put some fresh boots and some Redline cv grease into it as the recorded mileage on the new to me cv was 100k and buttoned everything back up.
     

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  9. Ohkei Dohkei

    Ohkei Dohkei Active Member

    So what do you think caused the cv failure? I didn't see where you did a suspension lift? do you think the 98 version will fix your issue? hard to see what is going on in the pics..
     
  10. banzairx7

    banzairx7 Active Member

    I have suspension limiting straps on my truck, Pro Comp #5172. They prevent the rear from drooping too much and tearing apart the axle. I also added a 3/16" spacer to the outside cv joint. It doesn't reduce the axle length much but any little bit helps. Put a few thousand miles on with this setup and no problems yet.... fingers crossed.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Adam Wheeler

    Adam Wheeler Member

    It was definitely the angle that the CV joint was at when it was floating in the air driving over the culvert putting it at maximum droop. I did put the rear spacers from the 2" lift kit in the back but I chopped them down to an inch and a half so it didnt raise the back as much.

    The 98 sambar cv axle is the 6 ball bearing type and not the tripod joint so the articulation is greater, improving the possibility of a repeat occurence.
     
  12. Adam Wheeler

    Adam Wheeler Member

    I remember seeing your post about these awhile ago and ordered them in the off chance that an issue would come up with rear, I do see where the shocks were rubbing against the cv boots at maximum droop. I may also install these to add further protection, as I really dont want to have to hunt for another axle.

    Did you just fasten the straps to both shock bolts or did you make a separate bracket off the frame for the upper bolt?
     
  13. banzairx7

    banzairx7 Active Member

    I used the shock bolts to attach the straps.
     
  14. Adam Wheeler

    Adam Wheeler Member

    Limiting straps are installed, I removed the rear spacers to modify them a bit more, but in the mean time this should help the shock from over extending. With the heavier springs in the front and stock in the back, it has a slight squat (half inch or so).
     

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