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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was talking to a co-worker yesterday about lockers up front and he told me about the lockright he had in his Scout D44 and how much he loved it off road. He said the steering would bump back and forth when 4 wheel drive was engaged but it wasn't unmanagable. I was wondering if anyone else here could describe being fully locked and if you think its worth it for a vehicle that is being built Primarilly for offroad use. I'm thinking yes, but I'm weary of getting it done and crappy 4 wheel drive steering totally letting me down when I'm done. I've never been in a fully locked vehicle so I haven't experienced this first hand. Thank you for your time and help. NORM
 

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Last time i was out i got stuck behind a jeep that was locked f/r and he had a tougher time getting through tight turns on a trail than i did had to wait for him to backup turn backup again turn and one more time to finally get through but i guess its your taste and what ever your building it for.
 

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Screw the Jeep Thing
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They have these great inventions called ARB, Electracs and the Elocker. Why the hell would you buy an auto locker?
 

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CheeseBurger Milkshake!!
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I had a Lock-Right for over 4 years up front, and now I'm running a mini-spool. After driving my Bronco for 5 years like this, I wouldn't own a four-wheel drive without a spool/locker in the front. The steering isn't bad at all, sometimes it affected very little, and sometimes it's noticable. In my experiences the steering's never been affected to the point of making me nervous/worried, or making the vehicle hard to control. Not to mention the traction gained by locking/spooling.

BTW--With a locked front and an LS rear the locker is almost invisible. It wasnt' until I locked the rear that I really began to notice it.

IMO--the mini-spool is a better way to go, it's less than half the price of an automatic locker and more durable.
 
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Howdy Norm! I do notice difficulties turning and the vehicle gets in a bind with the front locked unless in soft stuff. Easy fix, unlock the arb in the front and go. I use the rear locker and only lock the front when needed. Go selectable up front at least! Seems to be the consensus!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
So a lockright up front is a bad thing? lol
 

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BigNorm said:
So a lockright up front is a bad thing? lol
nope. its a good thing.
i have run a lockright, OX, and currently a detroit in the front. i liked them all.
if you have a large budget do a selectable, if you want reliability go for a detroit or full spool, if you are on a limited budget go lunchbox locker or mini spool, and if you dont even have a budget just weld the damn thing :beer
 

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I would not put an arb in my rig
detriot
I do not like resealing differential carriers
 

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The only turning problems you run into is the slow, uphill crawl/climb that requires a real tight turn... er something like that (But me being the only one that made the hill while the other 2 open front trucks couldnt, I dont see a problem). Other than that its either unlocked or doesnt matter. The improved traction is well worth it though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I've heard the Lockright is a noisy SOB. I may go the route of the lockright. Detroit would be my first choice I think because I've had experience with it in the rear diff and had no problems and great performance with it. Thanx for your comments. NORM
 

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My vote is ARB or spool.

It isn't the fact that the front is locked that causes problems. It's the "automatic" part. The locking / unlocking. Quick changes of the load on the axles / u-joints.
 

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IMHO, a spool is going to be extremely hard on the front axle shafts/U-joints.
Whenever you turn, the outside wheel has to turn faster than the inside wheel, or the tires have to slide. If the tires have really good traction, the outside wheel is going to be trying to turn faster, and the spool is not going to let it. That is going to put an enormous amount of torsional force (twisting) into the axles shafts/u-joints, and sooner or later, somethings going to break.
Same thing applies to L/S and lockers, but to a lesser degree. They require a specified amount of torque to overide the clutchs/gear preload, and then they slip. As long as the torque required does not exceed the axle shaft/u-joint capacity, everything should be fine.
Personally, I like the idea of a L/S diff that can be locked (electrically I think) that I read about (I don't remember who makes it), best of both worlds.

Just my $0.03

Steve
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
mda said:
My vote is ARB or spool.

It isn't the fact that the front is locked that causes problems. It's the "automatic" part. The locking / unlocking. Quick changes of the load on the axles / u-joints.
Ahhh. I see. A spool scares me because sometimes something has got to give and it usually isn't nice or pretty. The ARB would be nice but the price and the fact I'm depending on supporting systems to make it work bothers me a little. I liked the Ox but there's the price thing and I've heard that 4 Wheel Parts Wholesalers took over Ox and God knows what they've done to reduce costs while maintaining a nice high price. I'm liking the lunchbox alternative because it's going to let me get my project set up and on the road and add the locker at a later time when money is available.
 

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I don't think the OX is all that well-designed a "locker"

Something to consider on spools. Think, are they really harder on axles than lockers? When are you worried about them breaking your axle? In those same situations a locker will be locked, putting just as much stress on your axle as a spool. Also, unless you have a soft engaging locker, the shock of locking the axles under load can be very hard on parts. You won't get that shock with a spool.

Just a few thoughts
 

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Another thought on OXs, ARBs, or anyother full case differential. In addition to buying the locker, you'll need to have your ring gear installed on it. Then, your R&P gears will need to be "set up" again. This will add to the intial cost of these units.
 

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The differential terminology has really gotten confusing, so I'll define the terms the way I use them.

Open diff = spins the wheel with the least traction.

Limited Slip = applies X amount of torque to both wheels (usually 250 ft lbs, or so).
Posi -Trac
Trac-Lok
Power-Loc
etc

Locking diff = when locked, solid connection to both wheels.
ARB
E-Locker

Spool = solid connections between the axles, all the time.

And then you have things like the Detroit Locker, that is not a locker (allows one wheel to turn faster, but none to turn slower. These are normally racheting gear type diffs. The lunchbox lockers work the same way, although there are lunchbox L/S's also.

And then there are the Lockers that are manually locked (flip a switch, pull a knob, etc). They really should be refered to as "Driver controlled locking diffs", as they have been in the trucking industry for years. And at least one works as a L/S until locked.

I agree that a locked diff (driver controlled) will have the same problems as a spool when locked. The difference is that the driver chooses when to lock it.

I don't understand what the concerns over shock are? In a racheting (overrunning) type diff, the out side tire turns faster, causing the gear to move forward one tooth. Perhaps the shocj your are refering to the effect (noticable on a Detroit at least) of the gear overrunning? That is not a shock to the drive line, it's merely the spring pushing the gear back (re engaging). Or possibly the "thunk" when the gear finally rachets (caused by driveline windup being released).

I guess it all boils down to, you get what you need for the conditions you drive in. :thumbup
 

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steell said:
Same thing applies to L/S and lockers, but to a lesser degree. They require a specified amount of torque to overide the clutchs/gear preload, and then they slip.
explain to me how a locker slips.
 
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