Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Northern Catskill Mountains, NY
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Hype!! There sure is plenty of it around, on both side of the argument. I must ask all of you, how many of you have owned a rig with the Calmini set-up?
Alot to the negative things said about the Calmini S/R are hype also. I own a S/R rig, and I love it. I put 125K highway miles on my 94, most of which were on the bone-jarring, pothole-ridden highways in and around NYC. The S/R made a night and day difference in handling and ride comfort. It is the best thing I've done in the name of improved ride.
Is it safe? I've never experience any nose dive greater that in it's stock config. If you want to talk unsafe nose dive, I was behind a M/L set up when it made a panic stop. I watched the M/L expand and allow the body to lift up, exerting weight onto the front. I found that to be kinda scary. But hey, they should be used ONLY off-road, right?
I've driven my S/R rig many places. I've even drove it from NY to Moab and back. I never had a problem with it, even during the hardest of stops.
As for performance, I rode the Spider Mesa/Golden Spike/Gold Bar Rim trail with many other SpOA rigs, including Doug Kelsey (Keltec) and the one-and-only Figmo. I avoided the go arounds. I traversed the difficult obstacles, I went wherever te SpOA rigs went, and without a problem. So much for the Calmini set-up being a poor choice for the trail. It was just as capable. All of that without welding.
As for the tire/wheelwell problem, I find that happens most often with those who failed to install the bumpstop extensions. Also, the early design did have this problem, but moving the axle forward 1" with the new design really helped.
Now, I don't use the full bumpstop extensions as recommended by Calmini, as I wanted the most flex. A simple 2" body lift and I now have more flex than it should, without the rubbing. There are several things that can be done to greatly improve the flex on the Calmini set-up, and if you want to know, email me and I'll be happy to share.
Is the Calmini the ultimate set up? No, but neither is the SpOA. Both have pro's and con's, and when truely measured up to each other, it's six of one, half a dozen of the other.
Calmini is a very good company and make wonderful product, especially for those without a welder friend or a MIG in the garage. To make you all wonder, Calmini has a lot in store for us in the near future. Things that will make you take a second look at the largest Suzuki aftermarket manufacturer. Stay tuned.
To everyone else, avoid the HYPE. And also avoid the SCARE TACTICS.
Enuff said. Play nice.