New Forester, First Outing - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-27-2012, 06:04 PM   #15
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Raz, back in my manual driving days prior to the Subaru hill clutch assist when starting from a stop on a steep hill with a manual I would use the hand brake to keep from rolling back when starting out and would release it as soon as I started to move forward - in the case of your Forester would it really be a big load on it if you where to engage the handbrake once the assist was engaged in order to prevent the roll back happening in that very shot time that it takes for the assist to release? Would not think it would actually be holding the car/trailer for more than a second or so assuming you already have your foot on the gas.... just a thought.
Stop with the foot brake. Pull the hand brake. Release the foot brake to release hill assist. Use the hand brake to do the hill start. Maybe. I haven't looked at the Forester hand brake shoe but the one on our old Rav4 was very thin.
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Old 07-27-2012, 06:12 PM   #16
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Andrew, like the Outback, the Forester has a hand brake between the seats. While the hill assist does indeed need both foot brake pedal depressed and clutch pedal depressed ( and of course a hill ) to function, I would not use the hand brake in place of the foot brake. With the use of rear disk brakes, the hand brake no longer controls the rear stopping brakes but rather a very thin lined drum brake designed for parking only. I doubt it would hold up very long.
I don't recall ever needing to do a hill-start while towing, but I used the hand brake for starting on hills many, many times in Seattle and SF in the 2000 Forester and no problems with the brake slipping. I like the hill holder but it takes some getting used to. I suppose holding a trailer too would wear it faster but how often do you start and stop on a hill?
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Old 07-27-2012, 06:33 PM   #17
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Stop with the foot brake. Pull the hand brake. Release the foot brake to release hill assist. Use the hand brake to do the hill start. Maybe. I haven't looked at the Forester hand brake shoe but the one on our old Rav4 was very thin.
Yup but make sure you dont actually take your foot off the foot brake until you are truly ready to fully release the clutch and put your foot onto the gas ..... that way the hand brake should not be holding the car for more than a second.
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Old 07-27-2012, 06:46 PM   #18
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I used the hand brake for starting on hills many, many times in Seattle and SF in the 2000 Forester and no problems with the brake slipping.
Strange your 2000 Forest didnt have the hill assist feature. We had a Subaru Legacy in the early 90's that had it.

Living in an area with lots of hills learning how to drive a manual car out a tight parking spot on a steep hill using the hand brake to keep it from rolling into the car behind was actually the hardest part of learning to drive. But as you say it was something that was done all the time living in hilly areas so over time just became naturally.
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Old 07-27-2012, 07:09 PM   #19
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They had it, then didn't have it, and now have it again. But I'm surprised you had it in the early 90s, this Forester is the first of my cars ever to have it, though my Mom remembers having it on their cars prior to my learning to drive. I learned to shift with the handbrake/release method described above. With my dad yelling at me!
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Old 07-27-2012, 07:31 PM   #20
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Studebakers used to have this feature.

When stepping on the brake, the brake would stay engaged if the clutch was also stepped on. Then the brake would release with the clutch.


A couple of thoughts:

Is there an adjustment as to when the brake releases in the clutch travel?

I don't think so. I suspect just a limit switch when the clutch is released.

Could you release the clutch in neutral, then step it down again without the brake, shift into gear and catch your travel with the clutch? This could be done faster than the telling...

While I think you need to release both pedals I'm not sure.

BTW Nice looking rig you got there.

Thank you. Yours looks pretty good too.
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Old 07-27-2012, 08:04 PM   #21
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But I'm surprised you had it in the early 90s,
Yup the 92 Subaru Legacy had it as did both my 97 and 2000 Outbacks. Actually this is the first Subaru I have owned without it... only because getting it with a manual transmission was not an option its model year.
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Old 07-29-2012, 06:53 PM   #22
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The drum emergency brakes used in rear disc brakes are much smaller than old drum brakes designed for stopping, but I wouldn't worry about damaging them just from holding the car and trailer on a hill. Just do a test to see if they have the holding power you need on a steep hill. Wear should only be a factor while slipping the brake, but you are really dumping the brakes pretty quickly, so not much slip. Your clutch will be taking most of the abuse of hill starts, since it will need to be feathered for smooth starts. My Jeep wrangler has those tiny e brake shoes, and holds the car by itself, but I have not tested to see if it will hold car and trailer on the steep. So far I have used 4wd low range for really steep starts which works well.
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Old 07-29-2012, 07:47 PM   #23
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So far I have used 4wd low range for really steep starts which works well.
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Subaru sells that.........in Australia.
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Old 08-03-2012, 08:33 PM   #24
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We have been close to buying our 16 ft Scamp a new Subaru. Everything about the Subaru appeals to us but a recent visit to the dealership provided zero information on towing. They just were not prepared with answers. That surprised us and raised an immediate red flag. (!) Which model would be best? Does Subaru even supply hitches? Outback or Forester?...etc.
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:48 PM   #25
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Subaru does do a hitch but both times I bought one they recommended an after-market hitch but that could be because unless you order one you aren't likely to find one with a factory hitch. I think Outback has the higher towing capacity but you'd have to check. Toyota Rav4 V6 is another vehicle to consider.
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Old 08-04-2012, 01:06 AM   #26
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We have been close to buying our 16 ft Scamp a new Subaru. Everything about the Subaru appeals to us but a recent visit to the dealership provided zero information on towing. They just were not prepared with answers. That surprised us and raised an immediate red flag. (!) Which model would be best? Does Subaru even supply hitches? Outback or Forester?...etc.
You need to know 1st what your 16' actually weighs loaded. I don't think you will find any 16' Scamps that meet the Foresters tow specs so the Outback is your only option. Having said that there are also only a few 16' ' Scamps that fall into the Outback's tow soecs as well. due to their layout & options many are well over the Outbacks 200 lb tongue limit.

I have towed a 16' Sidebath Scamp with an Outback for 5 years, thousands of miles & it does well with it but I need to be very careful about what I load & don't load in the trailer & how I loaded what I do load in order to keep within Subaru's specs & to have a solid safe tow. Mine has no AC & only one propane tank & I never travel with water in the tanks.

I love my Subaru it's actually my 4th one but due to the tongue weight limitations I will be replacing it in the not to distant future, as much as I don't really want to with a vehicle with the ability to take a higher tongue weight in order to have an even safer & more solid tow for those times I travel on the Freeway at higher speeds.

As far as hitches go as far as I am aware Subaru only started to offer factory hitches a few years ago and its only a class I which is of no use for a 16' Scamp but you can take the car to any hitch installer & they will have a hitch that fits the Subaru nicely and meets the 16' requirements. Subaru also requires that you have brakes on anything you tow over 1000lbs so you will need to have the hitch installer run the brake wire as well as that is not part of the standard towing pre wiring that comes from the factory found on either the Forester or Outback.

As I said I love Subaru's & i am nit overly happy with the thought of changing vehicle makes. As folks here will tell you I'm the first to say that the Outback is a good tow vehicle. In fact way better than some here seem to think. I am for the most part very happy with how it tows my 16'. Did 12000 miles last year alone with no problems but if starting from scratch I would look for something with a higher tongue weight limit if I was planning to tow a 16'.

By the way if anyone suggest to you that you can over come the tongue weight limitation by using an equalizer hitch it's important to note Subaru's. Manual states they are not to be used on their vehicles.
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Old 08-04-2012, 04:47 AM   #27
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Smile A Change of Topic?

Getting back to Hill Holders, wouldn't the HH be bad for the throw-out bearing in the clutch?

My model Subaru doesn't have Hill Holder. When the rig starts to roll on a slight hill, I sometimes just engage the electric trailer brakes with the controller. This also assures me that the trailer brakes still work.
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Old 08-04-2012, 08:59 AM   #28
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Something I don't understand on all the tongue-weight issues. If you have a single axle trailer why not just redistribute the weight? Or is too much of it fixed in some of these trailers for that to help?
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