Honestly, the problem is the site administration. It would not be that hard to create a single sticky for each subforum, titled something like "The Ultimate _____ Thread" or " ______ DIY and FAQ"
This type of thing will help with the extremely numerous duplicate threads. It is more annoying when the answer is "did you use the search function?" The VB
search doesn't let you search short terms, or terms that are too common, and when you search with google, you don't always get relevant results (searching "DIY" only leads you to threads where that person used that term).
Each of these threads could have some simple information that links to good write-ups or good how-to, etc. For example, the suspension thread could have the following sections:
What is a lift/level, and why do the Colorado Canyon need it?
*Short explanation of the factory rake*
Methods of lift/level:
Strut Spacer - link to a thread with a how to
Ride Height Adjustable shocks - link to a thread on the Eibachs, and another for the Bilsteins, etc
Full lift types:
Diff drop - link to a thread
Body Lift - link to a thread or multiple threads
Honestly, it may seem like more work for the moderators and admins, but think about how much less work it is compared to combining threads, or having to moderate all the duplicate threads about the same damn thing. It's too easy for a good thread to get buried by new threads or posts, and too easy to say just search for it. When I first joined the forum, I was very disappointed in the organization structure of the forum, and ended up spending a good day or so going as deep as page 20 on some of the sub forums, and subscribing to threads that I thought may be of interest to me in the future. This is not the best way to do it though.
The other aspect that really frustrates me about this site is the vendor system. I am a vendor on another hobby forum, but I'm very small time, and it is only a hobby for me. I have a few ideas for products that this community could benefit from, so I contacted the forum owner and have not received a response almost a month later. I sent a request to the webmaster for info on becoming a vendor, and got a solicitation from someone saying that the vendor fee starts at $150 per month. I don't plan on even selling that much, let alone making enough profit to make that worth it. So then I see some people selling their products, but I don't see how they are making enough to be worth it (or they don't pay the fee, and are selling anyway). If the second point is true, then it would never be worth the $150 if others are doing it for free anyway. The other site I am a vendor for has a very simple method to become a vendor - you pay an annual fee (in this case $100), and then you receive a "star" in your forum profile that indicates you are a vendor. This site is also aggressive about "non-vendor pimping" - if a thread is suspected of offering items for sale through a non-vendor, the thread is shut down until that person becomes a vendor. There are also more users and more active users on the other site, so it wouldn't make sense in paying 18X as much for a vendor fee to reach MUCH MUCH less audience.