Are you kidding, Cool! I remember seeing the first Off Road Rear suspension in 88 or 89. Offroad became ProFlex. They were way ahead. I have owned five. If you haven't owned one, you be lacking in experience. The elastomers were limited, but were light and maintenance free. Then Manitous and some Rock Shox also used elastomers. The elastomers had their problems. firmed up in cold weather,but no oil or air to leak. I test road a 983 on a very rocky washed out road. I road the same hill on my hard tail. THe 983 easily outclimbed the hard tail and that sold me on my first one. The swingarm on the 98 and later EVO models is simple, works well and durable. This carbon swingarms are also upgradeable to rear disc brakes. Go to the following site operated by Proflex Devotees
See this picture for one sweet elastomer replacement.
http://idriders.com/proflex/galleries/t ... _shock.JPG
My first Proflex riding in Oregon, USA.
http://idriders.com/proflex/galleries/t ... heelie.jpg
Check out Old Proflexors pictures for the numerous modifications
The main gallery: http://idriders.com/proflex/galleries
The Girvin fork was different. You have to ride it different too. One positive was the lateral stiffness when turning. You could also compress the elastomers before a jump for added lift. The damping was performed by a rubber washer inside the shaft above the elastomers and the friction created by it. Once they wore out or if you accidently greased them the damping was very limited:oops:. The last versions had more travel and better damping with a coil/oil shock. I admittedly prefer Marzocchis now.
I have had great luck with my 5000 and my Oz. Lots of miles of hard riding and low maintenance. Durability is very high on my list.