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post #1 of (permalink) Old 05-14-2003, 06:16 PM Thread Starter
 
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Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

I have a couple of questions. Everything went pretty well with the install, ran into a few problems but it's all on.

One major problem I am curious about though is MAN DOES THIS THING RIDE WORSE! It seems far more stiff than it was before and it bounces like a Japanese yo-yo. The ride is horrible, when you hit a bump your lucky you have a soft top cause you might bounce out of the thing. It hits bumps like a ton of bricks.

At the rear shackles and at the rear of the front shackles are you supposed to leave the nuts a bit loose to allow them to pivot? I get a bit more flex but it seems to still be really stiff. What could I have possibly done wrong? I definitely am disappointed in the ride and I thought that is what a shackle reversal was supposed to improve.

Thanks for any help.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 05-14-2003, 07:09 PM
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Re: Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

Im no expert by any means, but I know you arent supposed to torque the funk outta shackle bolts or the shackles wont move freely. That might be part of it! They are supposed to have nylock nuts on them or lock washers or something so you dont have to mash the shackles into the springs when you torque them down. I wouldnt exactly say you need to leave them "loose", but snugged up to the shackle.

What about shocks? HAve you changed your shocks with this setup? If your riding 2" higher you should ideally have 2" longer shocks.

~daxe
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 05-14-2003, 07:56 PM
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Re: Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

Everything Daxe said is correct. Make sure that you haven't overtightened any of the nuts that would prevent the shackles from moving. Also, you want to make sure your shocks are all the correct length for the lift.

You didn't mention if you're using just the S/R kit or if you have the 3-inch-lift springs too, but regardless the Calmini S/R is notorious for a rough ride and little articulation. Also, if you do have new springs, they'll be a bit stiff until they've had a time to "break in" and then they should ride and flex better.

When my buddy John bought his Zuk with the Calmini 5" S/R kit on it, it rode like a go-kart and flexed like a steel girder. We pulled the lift off and went SPOA with a YJ shackle reversal, and John got the ride and flex he was looking for. Since you have a bit of lift now, you can install larger tires which'll help improve the ride quality. Check your tires' pressure too; if they're overinflated, you'll have a punishing ride.

-- Geoff Beasley
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 05-14-2003, 09:53 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

It's just the S/R everything else (springs, shocks. etc.) are all stock. I loosened some bolts but to my understanding the Shackle Reversal is supposed to improve flexibility. I heard a S/R will improve your ramp scores.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 05-14-2003, 10:31 PM
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Re: Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

On a stock Samurai, the bumpstops and swaybar are the limiting factors in wheel travel. By gaining 1 inch of lift in back and 2 inches of lift in front, you've extended your shocks by that much. So you've lost down-travel, but gained up-travel, which is a major source of the rough ride in a stock Sammy (bouncing off the bumpstops on bumps).

It sounds like you may have over-tightened the bolts, although your kit includes poly bushings which stiffen the ride and handling while reducing articulation a little bit.

As far as improving the design of the shackle reversal improving ride quality, it'll only do a little bit for you, by allowing the front wheels to travel slightly rearward as they travel upward. On the Calmini kit, the front of the springs are down so low that the springs are kept basically level. This keeps your castor close to factory spec, but it doesn't allow quite as much rearward travel of the wheels as it would if the front of the springs were up a bit higher. That's one of the reasons why the AAPA/CSC YJ shackle reversal improves ride quality: not only are the YJ springs much longer and softer, but their leading edge is tipped up higher than the rear of the springs, allowing the wheels to travel rearward more as they go up.

Regarding improving articulation, you'll be seeing very little improvement unless you have the sway bar removed. The only real gain in flex will come from the lift you get, which allows more wheel travel before the bumpstops are sitting on the axle, and this would be coming from any method of lift, not specifically the shackle reversal.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but if you were looking for a smooth ride and good flexibility, you bought the absolute wrong suspension. If you would like to improve your ride and flexibility, I'd recommend using Old Man Emu springs in conjunction with your shackle reversal. Ditch the sway bar. Use Missing Links (or other folding shackles) in back, get some longer shocks, and add some larger tires. Then you'd have a nice-riding, well-articulating suspension setup.

I hope this information helps. If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to ask!

-- Geoff Beasley
post #6 of (permalink) Old 05-14-2003, 10:51 PM
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Re: Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

87ronin, I have the calmini shackle reverse also. it was installed by the previous owner and in my opinion is probably the biggest reason he sold it shortly after installing the kit. I have the calmini shocks which may make it ride even rougher yet. I called calmini up about a week ago to ask them if there was anything I could do to improve the ride. I asked what the torque was on the shackle bolts too see if the previous owner overtorqued them which may cause them to bind and not flex at all. the guy at calmini told me there was no specific torque and that they should still flex some no matter what they were torqued at. which I thought was odd. every bolt I have ever seen has a recommended torque, (especially critical bolts like suspension) about the only thing I've ever seen that doesn't have a specific torque is anything with a pipe thread on it. he then went on to tell me that this kit "IS... designed for off road use" with the emphasis on "IS". duhhhhh..... so is every other lift kit out there. to that I told him, "well you advertise that it improves the ride" he said "where did you see that?" I said it states it right in the ad on your website for the shackle reversal kit. to this I got no response. and I honestly can say I've never ridden in a rougher riding vehicle, bar none. lifted or not. fact is mine is worse than stock and has the articulation of a cinder block. (rear tire breaks loose on the up hill grade turning into my driveway at slow speed) I then asked him if he thought a shock change might soften things up a bit. he said it should as the calmini shocks are 25 to 30 percent stiffer. he then added that they aren't going to take shocks back for return. I said whoa, I never asked you to do that nor did I mean to imply it. overall my conversation with them wasn't exactly informative or very pleasant. I've always heard good things about calmini and its one of the reasons I chose the samurai that I bought. although the primary reason was no rust. sorry if I turned this into a rant. but I just thought I'd tell you about my personal experience with the shackle reverse kit. two things I've done since, as was said earlier, I lowered the air pressure in my tires and I installed seats out of a geo storm. both took some of the edge off. but I still have some work to do. possibly yj springs. if you find anything that helps out let us know. I'll stop here before I put anyone to sleep. [img]images/graemlins/thud.gif[/img]
post #7 of (permalink) Old 05-14-2003, 10:54 PM
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Re: Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

I forgot to add, I've got bumpsteer out the butt too. [img]images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] see ya
post #8 of (permalink) Old 05-14-2003, 11:11 PM
 
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Re: Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

You'll get the most out of a shackle reverse if you use
lifted (arched)springs.As this type of spring compresses
it gets longer and makes the shackle and axle move back.
Beware though that this can also cause the front tires
to contact the rear of the wheel well at full stuff.The
cure for this is to move the axle forward one inch by redrilling the
locating hole on the spring pad and by adjusting the bump stops down.
You also might find that you have to add a spacer to your front driveshaft.
If you're not running a winch,heavy bumpers and a ton of
armor you can probably use the softest springs available
to get the best ride.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 05-15-2003, 04:02 PM
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Re: Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

after rereading my above post I'm sure it looks like I'm bashing the hell out of calmini. which isn't entirely true. in their defense, the shackle reverse set up looks like a top quality, heavy duty, industrial strength kit. nothing cheesy anywhere. and if value and "bang for the buck" is a concern its probably going to be a tough lift to beat. and like the man said it "IS" made for off road. which leads me to believe I should probably stop whining and drive the darn thing. I was going to post an excerpt from their website, but thought it would be better just to post a link and let you decide for yourself if their ad is slightly misleading or not. [img]images/graemlins/censor.gif[/img] http://www.puresuzuki.com/shackle_reverse.htm





post #10 of (permalink) Old 05-15-2003, 04:55 PM
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Re: Those of you with the Calmini Shackle Reversal

I have the S/R and it tamed the harsh ride quite a bit. Since installing it I've also added rear up fronts and it improved even more. The S/R does have limitations, but it does offer a small lift on a budget.
I did read in one of the rags that the torque spec for the shackles was around 10 foot pounds. Seems a bit low to me so using nylok nuts I snug them (just barely), then back off a tweak...
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