'89 Brumby & 04 Forester

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GumbyBrumby
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Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2021 10:48 am

'89 Brumby & 04 Forester

Post by GumbyBrumby » Sat Jan 01, 2022 5:36 pm

G'day lads,

I've recently taken ownership of an '89 Brumby. Mechanically it's A1, but it leaves a lot to be desired as a daily driver, AC and power steering are the first jobs. The general lack of power when on a free-way is an issue and needs to be resolved. I am aware of the Holley upgrade path and I'd consider a Megasquirt or MSR to add some torque.

The paint is loaded with paint chips (a country Brumby), and every panel has a dent (a farm Brumby). I'm seriously thinking about taking the time to learn how to auto paint properly.

I'm very attached to this particular Brumby. It was my dad's, and it means a lot to me, I am happy to invest in it. Coin is no issue (despite what my wife thinks).

Let's leave the Forester for another day.

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El_Freddo
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Location: Bridgewater Vic

Re: '89 Brumby & 04 Forester

Post by El_Freddo » Sat Jan 01, 2022 11:39 pm

G’day Grumpy Brumby,

Looks like you’re chasing two of the hardest mechanical parts to find for the EA81 - seems everyone wants them these days!

Are you looking for advice on power upgrades or just throwing ideas around? The EA81 is a good engine but it’s no modern power house. Drive it accordingly and enjoy it for what it is.

Some maintance could be needed - new plugs, leads, valve gap adjustments, spark timing etc. At this age the carb is probably looking for a freshen up, mine is but I keep putting it off :mmm:

Congrats on the ownership, they’re a vehicle that deserves to be restored and kept alive well into the future. Why Subaru hasn’t brought out a new style brumby is beyond me! Bantum google sketched one based on the XV. You can find that thread on the forum, can’t remember which sub forum though.

Cheers

Bennie
"The lounge room is not a workshop..."
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Bantum
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Location: Northern Territory + QLD
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Re: XV Ute ...

Post by Bantum » Sun Jan 09, 2022 5:10 am

Thanks Benny ... :)

The XV Ute is here : https://www.ausubaru.com.au/viewtopic.php?f=84&t=23204

Cheers, Bantum ...

GumbyBrumby
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Re: '89 Brumby & 04 Forester

Post by GumbyBrumby » Mon Jan 10, 2022 5:23 pm

El_Freddo wrote:
Sat Jan 01, 2022 11:39 pm
Looks like you’re chasing two of the hardest mechanical parts to find for the EA81 - seems everyone wants them these days!
Yeah I gathered. I have a lead on both and am about to pull the trigger. I've not seen any original radios in my trawling they seem to be the holy grail or original parts.
El_Freddo wrote:
Sat Jan 01, 2022 11:39 pm
Are you looking for advice on power upgrades or just throwing ideas around? The EA81 is a good engine but it’s no modern power house. Drive it accordingly and enjoy it for what it is.
Yeah I am - hence the Webber and Megasquirt mention. I should have been clearer. Few too many beers that day. :lol:
I'm just tossing ideas around at this point. I've thought long and hard about EJ transplants, and crazy off road mods. To tell the truth it feels wrong , so I reckon I'll go for a steady daily driver, as stock as I can make it, without it being inconvenient. Part of that is being able to handle prolonged periods at free-way speeds. Currently it does that no problems except for big hills (think Mooney Mooney Bridge south bound) which require a downshift. I'd like to be able to pull through those climbs a bit better. To be fair though, I was carrying a 300kg toolbox and other things.

Maybe I just need to lose some weight ;)
El_Freddo wrote:
Sat Jan 01, 2022 11:39 pm
Some maintance could be needed - new plugs, leads, valve gap adjustments, spark timing etc. At this age the carb is probably looking for a freshen up, mine is but I keep putting it off :mmm:
This is solid advice. After AC/PS - the very next thing.
El_Freddo wrote:
Sat Jan 01, 2022 11:39 pm
Congrats on the ownership, they’re a vehicle that deserves to be restored and kept alive well into the future. Why Subaru hasn’t brought out a new style brumby is beyond me! Bantum google sketched one based on the XV. You can find that thread on the forum, can’t remember which sub forum though.
Well we will see - I may not manage the restoration, I'll at least preserve it.

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Silverbullet
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Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2010 6:20 pm
Location: Adelaide

Re: '89 Brumby & 04 Forester

Post by Silverbullet » Tue Jan 11, 2022 6:49 pm

GumbyBrumby wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 5:23 pm
Yeah I am - hence the Webber and Megasquirt mention. I should have been clearer. Few too many beers that day. :lol:
I'm just tossing ideas around at this point. I've thought long and hard about EJ transplants, and crazy off road mods. To tell the truth it feels wrong , so I reckon I'll go for a steady daily driver, as stock as I can make it, without it being inconvenient. Part of that is being able to handle prolonged periods at free-way speeds. Currently it does that no problems except for big hills (think Mooney Mooney Bridge south bound) which require a downshift. I'd like to be able to pull through those climbs a bit better. To be fair though, I was carrying a 300kg toolbox and other things.

Maybe I just need to lose some weight ;)
It's a big ask of a stock EA81 to get up freeway hills without down-shifting IMO, especially with A/C running ;) The A/C system might draw 5kW from an engine that produces 50kW. The twin carbie EA81 in my wagon even struggles up hills in top gear at 100/110 km/h but I do have 27" tires which sap a lot of low down power.

Useful power upgrades for a standard EA81 in my experience have been ones that help it breathe better. So carburettor (Weber 32/36 upgrade or rebuild the stock carb) and a slightly larger, freely flowing exhaust. I've also got my Weber mounted on an EA82 intake manifold which I was told has larger internal volume than EA81 manifold but I'm not so sure on that. Can't use the standard EA81 power steering pump with an EA82 manifold though, apparently an EA82 pump can be made to fit. I did the carb/manifold/exhaust on my ute all at the same time and noticed an improvement at higher revs mainly.

Someone on this forum some years ago upgraded his EA81 with megasquirt, Subydoug. Can't remember what injectors he used or where on the engine. If you could find a throttle-body-injection carb replacement that is small enough it might be a go-er, been trying to find something of the sort myself for a while.

I've got just ignition upgraded to EDIS on my wagon but that upgrade is not for the feint of heart. The ignition system is the weakest part of the EA81 in my opinion which is why I threw it in the bin for EDIS. The stock system can benefit from new rotor, cap. leads and plugs if it is tired. Also get the electronic ignition module if you don't already have it to do away with the points.

All the best with your Brumby in the future ;) Any questions you may have won't go un-answered on this forum.

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