Trust me, on ice, you want open diff. If one tire spins the other will try to keep you straight. If both tires spin you slide downhill usually into the nearest ditch. Selectable is the way to go if you live in an icy area.
So far I've had good luck with my aussie in the rear of my 60 (wheelbase advantage) When it's really slick out, the rear end likes to kick to the right a bit. We shall see later in the winter when the MN roads are all coated in a nice thick coating of ice :
In an open diff, the wheel which has traction will act as an anchor when the wheel that doesn't have traction spins. On ice, this will keep your vehicle straight. With a locker, you no longer have this anchor, and thus will slide down hill.
Overall I'm happy with my locker purchase. It is quircky that is for sure. After spending some time behind the wheel you quickly get accostomed to it. The one part I don't like is transversing parking lots or parking ramps. If I don't keep some throttle on it, it will jerk like a son of a bitch.
Aussie lockers are available for cruisers, but they are currently waiting for a shipment. Supposedly there is a shipment leaving Austraila before Christmas. The $199 price tag goes up after Dec 31 too.
I was excited by the price of the Aussie Locker and I am sure it is perfect for some.. I officially decided that I have to hold out for the selectable lockers (saving my pennies for a long time). For my driving style (daily driver w/ road miles) I wouldn't be happy with the auto-locker.
IMO you should definitley consider p/s upgrade before running a locker up front.
Curious about Rusmannx' question.. I would think that any auto or selectable locker would give better on road manners than a welded diff, wouldn't it?
The only reason a welded might be considered to have better on road manners, is because it is totally predictable, not affected by tire pressure, and doesn't make any clanking noises, only tire scrub results. I wouldn't say welded is better, and I can't because I have neither, those are just the only reasons I can think of why welded might be considered better on road. Generally just predictability. Neither are for me. I am holding out for selectable F&R. No other way in a DD, as far as I'm concerned.
Has anybody heard from torqmaster over these lockers? I slapped my visa down in the beginning of Nov and nothing. I can't even get an e-mail responce (it is the holidays, i guess). The last I heard they where going to ship on the 20th of Dec?
I'm in the same position as you Big_blue, last email I got from teh guy said that they were expecting an order to be shipped out from their supplier in the first week in January. So we can expect them at our doors in about...... June