selectable vs full time lockers

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Been reading up on lockers the last couple of days... seems like people around these parts really like the Aussies, with Detroits and ARBs getting honorable mentions (mostly because of the cost).

When wheeling, are there big advantages or disadvantages to a selectable locker (ARB) vs a full time locker (aussie/detroit)? I can kinda see an advantage to having a selectable in the front, but what the back... seems like the cost of an ARB in the back would be overkill on a trail rig, no?

Discuss.
 
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For a trail rig I think an ARB in the rear might be overkill unless money is plentiful. Its a good locker, but I opted for an Aussie and this was back when my 40 was my DD. There are good arguements for using a selectable in the front, even on a trail rig, but a lunchbox will work up front too. Again, its money, I can afford ARB's but would rather spend the money on other mods and beer.
 

Pin_Head

 
 
 
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Some people put them in the rear because they don't like the effects they can have on the road in normal driving. They can have some bad manners, like popping, banging and tail wagging if you drive the same as you did with an open differential.

My experience is that the bad road manners of auto lockers can be mostly eliminated by adjusting your driving style. There is a common misconception that auto lockers "lock" when you give it some gas. This is not true. They only "lock" both wheels when one wheel is slipping. Otherwise one wheel is "locked" or driving and the other wheel is free wheeling or ratcheting.

The manner problems arise from the fact that auto lockers are bidirectional. That is, they work in the forward and reverse direction (and also acceleration and deceleration). When they change directions, they also switch which tire is driving and which is ratcheting. This side switching is where the popping, banging and tail wagging comes from. You can eliminate these problems simply by keeping a steady pressure on the accelerator pedal or a steady deceleration through turns until you come out and are going straight. Tail wagging when shifting is harder to eliminate completely, but you get used to it.
 

Poser

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I do not like the effects of a non-selectable locker off road....


There are times when an open diff in the front and rear will be far better than locked...
 

Aussie_Locker

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Aussie Locker

Pin_Head said:
Some people put them in the rear because they don't like the effects they can have on the road in normal driving. They can have some bad manners, like popping, banging and tail wagging if you drive the same as you did with an open differential.

My experience is that the bad road manners of auto lockers can be mostly eliminated by adjusting your driving style. There is a common misconception that auto lockers "lock" when you give it some gas. This is not true. They only "lock" both wheels when one wheel is slipping. Otherwise one wheel is "locked" or driving and the other wheel is free wheeling or ratcheting.

The manner problems arise from the fact that auto lockers are bidirectional. That is, they work in the forward and reverse direction (and also acceleration and deceleration). When they change directions, they also switch which tire is driving and which is ratcheting. This side switching is where the popping, banging and tail wagging comes from. You can eliminate these problems simply by keeping a steady pressure on the accelerator pedal or a steady deceleration through turns until you come out and are going straight. Tail wagging when shifting is harder to eliminate completely, but you get used to it.
Possibly I am reading this wrong, but just for the sake of clarification let me comment on the operation of the Aussie Locker. The only time the Aussie Locker is "unlocked" is when one wheel is turning faster than the other, such as in a turn at an intersection. The outside wheel in the turn is traveling further and faster therefore it disengages and instantly engages when the tire speed is the same. You can nail a high horsepower vehicle with an Aussie installed and leave a trail of black rubber as long as you have horsepower to continue. They are used on street racers and performance vehicles in the USA and abroad for that very reason.

As to side twitching, we see very little of that on the Aussie Locker. If the tires meet the specificaions as called out in the manual inculding the same tire pressure you should not see this when changing lanes. Yes, if you power through a turn at an intersection it is possible that on exit you may feel this. As the writer correctly points out, a slight modification in driving style makes this an infrequent issue with the Aussie.

As I said in the begining, I may have misread this posting and if so I apologize for intruding. But from what I thought I saw I wanted to add my comments for consideration.
 

Pin_Head

 
 
 
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Aussie_Locker said:
The only time the Aussie Locker is "unlocked" is when one wheel is turning faster than the other, such as in a turn at an intersection.
Yes, this is true for many autolockers. Since one wheel is almost always turning faster than the other on dry pavement, no matter how slightly, the practical effect of this is that one wheel is usually driving (locked) and the other is going faster, or ratcheting.

Whether you give it gas or not does not efect the ability of one wheel to turn faster than the ring gear as long as the wheels don't slip. If you give it enough gas so that a wheel slips, then the other side will also lock, because neither wheel can ever turn slower than the ring gear.
 

rusty_tlc

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Poser said:
I do not like the effects of a non-selectable locker off road....


There are times when an open diff in the front and rear will be far better than locked...
Do you have an example?
 
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i read a big thread about this in the 60 section, although the driving characteristics are different because of there longer wheelbase, you can get the ideas from alot of people, just do a search any you might find it... some people got really emotional about there lockers lol but just ignore the BS and there is some awesome info
 
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although your post pertained to offroading selectibility vs non, you still have got to drive it on the streets to (assuming its not a trailer queen)....i forgot to mention that
 

honk

 
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PUPTLAM said:
So long as its a trail rig only I would just get a detroit locker and save the money.
Huh? Aren't Detroit lockers selectable ones, and cost more than ARBs?
 
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FJBen

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honk said:
Huh? Aren't Detroit lockers selectable ones, and cost more than ARBs?

Full detroits are + ~$525.00...NOT selectable...

all options are great, I just like to choose when to lock my vehicle up....so I vote ARB's...especially with no power steering at the moment...trying turning 35's with no power steering fully locked...
 
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yea... I've always liked the idea of being able to switch back and forth between locked and open... but ARBs + compressor is SOOO much more $$$ than dual aussies... that money saved by going with aussies would go a long way towards other mods.
 

mr_manny

 
 
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exactly the reason I installed a pair of aussie's in my truck...

Ran them @rubithon w/o power-steering without any issues :D

I believe this was only possible, because of my 10.5x33's on stockers....If I had 12.5's, my experience would not be so positive.
 

honk

 
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Jackson said:
yea... I've always liked the idea of being able to switch back and forth between locked and open... but ARBs + compressor is SOOO much more $$$ than dual aussies... that money saved by going with aussies would go a long way towards other mods.
You'll get over the cost pretty quickly, and you'll find ways to get more for whatever you want to do. I've got a lockrite in my '65 and keep thinking of taking it out because it turns out that my wife likes to putt around in that one mostly on pavement so all it does is make weird noises and odd handling. I've got ARBs in both ends of the cruiser-not-ready in my shop and it was so long ago now that I don't even remember what I paid for them.

Hmmm, I've always thought that Detroits were an even better selectable than ARBs. Good thing I'm here.
 

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rusty_tlc said:
Do you have an example?


Maneuvering off road in close/tight turning, high-traction situations for starters. A locked rear end will push/fight following the front axle, causing a wider turning area, and only be increased with a locker in the front. Following a tight trail through the trees is an example of this. It is not that big of a deal if you do not run tight, twisted trails I guess.


Another is in very poor traction, or greasy soil. An open diff will allow you to steer, and allow more control of your direction, where a locker in the rear will cause you to slide around and not hold a line, and again, a front auto locker would only amplify this.


Having operated many non-selectable locker equipped vehicles, from a ’48 CJ-2A to a suburban for wheelbase comparison, in a wide range of terrain, my opinions on this have only been reinforced over the last 17+ years. If I lived in an area of the world that tight maneuvering was not an issue, I may have a different opinion on this, but I like the vehicle to respond to my input in a predictable manner, and to not have to Austin Powers through the trail.


Besides, learn how to read a line, operate and navigate an open differential vehicle off road. It will make you a better operator. :)



Good luck!


-Steve
 
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I'm running an Aussie in the rear and an ARB in the front. I have been very pleased with both. The ARB is definitely preferred but for a 1/3 of the price, the Aussie rocks!

I am wondering how well the Aussie in the rear is going to handle in the snow. Since you are from upstate N.Y, I thought this would be a good place to ask the question:

Does an automatic locker in the rear handle well in the snow?
 
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rear locker

I use ARB in front and lock right in the rear. No problems....unless..
you want to count the crushed in side of my 40. ;)
On side hill lines that are slippery an open rear diff can be a good friend and
a locked, NON-selectable rear can get a bit "loose" and cause slides.
I'd like an ARB in the rear before next year's GSMTR.
Live and learn.
Rear non-selectable lockers in the rear can take some getting used to.
Winter driving in particular. After a few years I hardly notice the lock right
is back there.
Tire pressure should be equal in the rear tires for smooth operation.
 
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