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ok, i just installed the Calmini spacer and rear shackles for an added 2.5" lift. and now when i go over a simple speed bump on-road, i get this fairly loud metal bang in my front suspension. So can somebody here explain to me what an "upper coil bucket contact" is and is this what is making the noise? And if so, anyone know of any possible ideas to remedy this w/out having to do anymore major mods to the suspension? Being a novice/ameteur in suspension installation, i experienced a helluva time putting this suckers in! In fact, almost killed myself when the instruction manual had me remove the coils w/out warning me that the coils were gonna come flying out!! :blackeye: Whew!!

Anyhow, thx for any inputs.
 

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It's the Upper Control Arms (UCA) making contact with the coil bucket. The UCA is basically what limits your downward travel on the X, and makes the noise as well. The common (But expensive) fix is to replace the stock UCA with the Total Chaos UCAs. This will give about 1" more of travel, and provides a rubber bump stop so when contact is made, it's not anything you will even hear from inside the car like you do now.
 

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Wait a minute??? You installed a Calmini spacer kit and the directions told you to take off the coils?!?!?!

As for the UCA/Coil bucket contact, do you have a 4x4? Did you buy the Calmini 4x4 spacers or the 4x2 spacers?

There really isn't a good (easy / cheap) way to cure the problem. You can buy Total Chaos upper control arms for about $550. If you call Calmini, they will tell you to cut a notch in your UCA (which I think is total BS), you can take the spacers out and have a machine shop slim them down a bit for you. Or, you can pull the Calmini kit out, sell it and get another kit that doesn't do that.

I will say, the only people with the Calmini kit I have heard with this problem are the ones running the 4x2 spacers on a 4x4 or the people who bought the very first run of spacers as they were too tall.
 

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The upper A-arm is the piece that pivits off the frame and the upper spindle bolt connects (the part you have to pound apart to disconnect the spindle and get it out of the way). The coil bucket is the upside-down bucket that the strut mounts in (where the spacer goes). When the suspension droops, the a-arms drops to allow the tire to droop, but it hits the coil bucket, making the noise.

The only way to get rid of the noise is to buy the Total Chaos, tubular A-arms that PRG sells, or get a smaller spacer.
 
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Discussion Starter #6
Thx guys... but yeah, Calmini's instructions absolutely says to remove the coils and even gives instructions on how to reinstall. Crazy! All I did to remedy that is pulling out the whole coil and shock assembly and simply placing the spacers on top and then reinstalling them again. Seemed much simpler than having to take them all apart... go figure!

As for the Total Chaos, quite pricey but I'll wait and see how unbearable the UCA and coil bucket noise becomes. And where I live here on the Big Island.. most of our off-roads are all lava rocks! :bounce:
 

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Hey GenX, are you sure they say to remove the 'coils' or do they say to remove the coilovers? I have a set of instructions because at one point I did this mod as well, and my instructions only mention removing the coilovers, and then attaching the spacer and mounting it back on.
 
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Step 4 says: "Loosen and remove the three upper mount plate nuts and ALSO the center coil-over retaining nut as well"

Maybe I'm confused, but when i did this the whole coil and spring assembly popped off. But now, my only concern is the UCA and coil bucket are making contact.

However, Calmini instruction also says "The 4WD unit will not cause any issues with the upper mount and the control arm itself." Yeah right, looks like I'll be calling Calmini tomorrow!
 
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Discussion Starter #9
ok, check this out. I measured my front end lift from ground to the lower lip of the fender which reads

front: 36 3/4" ? 93cm

rear: 36 1/4" ? 92cm

This makes the rear lower than the front end... what gives? I double checked my Calmini packaging and the part # indicates the spacers are for the 4WD version, so it checks out. I've been driving on-road for a few days now but does it need time to settle in??

To the naked eye the height difference doesn't appear too off balance but maybe the spacer I got IS the 2WD version and thus causing the UCA/bucket contact??

Any ideas?? I wanna avoid having to purchase the Total Chaos UCA kit only as a last resort.
 

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Been a long time since I did this, but they had a move on a Daystar to remove the coilovers and turn them 180 and re install. I don't know, I followed the instructions and mine went pretty well and no contact even before the bumper and winch, Although I hear of contact issues and I can see a itsy bitsy mark about the size of a tomato seed on my UCA. I don't hear any clunking. Check out my Daystar thread in suspensions.

And I think you just misunderstood the directions, Pandora's box!

MC
 

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front: 36 3/4" ? 93cm

rear: 36 1/4" ? 92cm
On my stock OR suspension I measured 34.25 in the front and 35.0 in the rear so you're up 2.5" in the front and 1.25" in the rear. I've got 86 pounds of sliders installed so I'm a bit lower than dead nutz stock but the weight is pretty much in the center. The Xterra has a bit of forward list.
 

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Has anyone installed limiting straps to prevent the coil bucket contact?It seems like it would be a fairly easy fix
 

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I have not heard anyone doing that and it would work, but it's more of a bandaid fix. The real solution is to use the correct length shocks or spacers. Your shock is your limit strap and it was designed that way from the factory.
 

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TLYNCH said:
Has anyone installed limiting straps to prevent the coil bucket contact?It seems like it would be a fairly easy fix
When I did the first uniball UCA I used limit straps. They work well but not for this application as the straps (even with double straps) as they stretch too much and actually change the ride because of such limited wheel travel. This is why the aftermarket UCA's use a urethane droop stop.
Do NOT grind the stock uca. It's just not designed to have a relife at that point. THere is a decent amount of force on that stock uca using a leveling kit that is too tall, and weakening the arm is just not an option.
"There really isn't a good (easy / cheap) way to cure the problem. You can buy Total Chaos upper control arms for about $550. If you call Calmini, they will tell you to cut a notch in your UCA (which I think is total BS), you can take the spacers out and have a machine shop slim them down a bit for you. Or, you can pull the Calmini kit out, sell it and get another kit that doesn't do that."
Machining a Calmimi spacer is not an option as the bolts go thru the spacer. Machining it would basically render it useless.
"Add a winch and bumper and no more contact. MC "
It will still hit at full droop, especially crawling over lava rock.
 

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Who was told by Calmini to grind on their products? In the past they've fiercely protested altering their product (ie-zerking their UCAs) as any such tampering wil lvoid their warranties. I find it hard to believe they've suggested that.. Their engineering standards are above, "Well, we'll make it and if it don't work, we'll just tell 'em to get out the grinder.."
:dontknow:
 

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It has been told to a number of people. If you do a search, it was a common suggestion by Calmini when their spacer kit first came out.

BTW, it's not grinding "their" UCA, it's grinding your stock UCA.
 

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so is it a general negative feeling towards the calmini spacers? cuz i was looking at getting them

also what other spacers are there that WONT cause uca contact?
 
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