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I run a tru trac in my tow rig. Pros- completely mechanical and basically nothing to have fail. It gives a partial rotation of one tire before locking so it's great on the road and doesnt eat tires. Cons- I cant find any.Air lockers are great but if you get out there and the pump takes a dump, or line gets broken somehow you are open diff. I would go tru trac for your application.
I ran a trutrac up front when I first started building my rig. 20+y.a.). I personally thought it waz worthless. A clutch LSD is a better option IMO (Supra 8" V6)Or Toyota E-locker.
https://www.justdifferentials.com/Toyota-8-Truetrac-p/tt913a610.htmUse CK-TLC-B for "4 cyl” type differentialYou have 30 spline shafts. All toyota 8" differentials are 30 spline. Just be sure you get the one for a 4cyl diff since that is what you have.
Given your needs and winter weather daily driving, I would opt for a selectable over a mechanical locker, that way it acts like an open diff when not engaged. A selectable does take a little more to install and run, but a cheap compressor and tank can be set-up if you don't want to pay for an ARB compressor, cheaply enough that you could carry a spare compressor and still be under the cost of an ARB compressor.Outside of installer error, I have yet to see an air line fail or get ripped out while wheeling.
I should have said in the original post that the snow has been heavy the past couple years but really is not super snowy for more than a month or two at most. 2 years ago I believe it was record breaking since 1979! I do like the idea of being able to turn it on and off with the flip of a switch with a selectable. The reason I have considered a truetrac is because of the ease of installment and maintenance it requires over a selectable locker. The truetrac really is making me want to choose it with its price and what it offers. About half the price of lets say a ZIP locker not including the compressor. If someone could explain to me the difference between 27 pinion and 30 splines and which applies to the locker/LSD I would appreciate it. And maybe some info on what I would need to do if I would want to install a truetrac on a stock rig. Do I need to replace my axles? My diff gears?
The main issue with a mechanical locker and winter driving is ice, as it can make for sketchy driving. With standard 4wd you have opposing wheels driving the vehicle, this balances out traction and keeps the rear from wanting to switch places with the front. With a mechanical locker in the rear, this balance is upset, and you have to account for it when driving. For some this isn't an issue, and say it is easy to compensate, others I know have swapped out their mechanical or spool, after the first time the rear end tried to come around them on ice.Yes, mechanical lockers are cheaper and easier to install, but an ARB locker should only cost you an hour of bench labor for a shop to install it in your 3rd member. Also, you do recoup the additional costs overtime with less tire wear, especially with a rig that is driven daily as a commuter vehicle.Something else to consider is, do you really need a locker at this time, or for the type of trails you run, would a winch be more beneficial?
My experience is different.There are some great choices for lockers now. The discussions, opinions, and experiences on this topic are DEEP and W-I-D-E! After actively 4-wheeling for about 18 years, 2 Toy pickups. If I built another truck for active wheeling and as my daily driver it would be locked front and rear.I’d install a Detroit locker in the rear and one of Marlin’s favorite lockers in the front.I would not spend the money on an ARB unless I won the Powerball. While 4-wheeling - flipping a locker on and off never made sense to me, and I never felt like disconnecting a locker, front or rear, would make any difference on the obstacle I was on. If an ARB is a choice for a daily driver and wheeler, it makes more sense to me to install one in the rear diff.If wheeling is not frequent intense rock crawling, then a locker in the front with an open diff in the rear, although not ideal, would probably be adequate for much of the terrain.Regarding reliability or longevity… I don’t see where any of the popular lockers is a concern.We went 4-wheeling during winter months here in AZ typically a couple times. Deep snow and occasionally we’d encounter ice on the highway. Having a locker front and rear for off-highway is better than an open diff. Period.Snow wheeling was usually deeper than 6” and I chained up all 4-tires when I knew we’d be out for most of the day and we had more than a couple vehicles. There was always someone who got stuck. I always air’d down to about 5 PSI for the snow runs.If negotiating terrain that’s icey... 1 – it is dangerous, whether you are open or locked. 2 – if you can’t control your vehicle on ice, you shouldn’t be driving on it, or you need more practice. 3 - Yes, the locked up rear end does want to push and come around, but I never found that I couldn’t adequately control it. The benefit to having all wheels powered and driving is more important. And 4- it was very rare that I found myself on pure ice for any length of terrain, so my concern for driving on it was minimal. BUT… I live in sunny AZ, not Minnesota. Now with that said, if I lived in a very cold climate where icey road conditions were the norm for months at a time, an ARB in the rear diff to turn off the locker may be a benefit... although I don't have any experience with an ARB.Regarding a winch…. I had Ramsey 8,000 with the Ramsey bumper. It was a gift from Ramsey as part of their sponsored trip to the Dusy Irshim Trail with Off-Road magazine. I used it about 6 or 7 times, and each time it was for pulling someone else’s vehicle. Unless I was going out 4-wheeling by myself (which may not be the smartest thing to do) frequently, I would not spend the money on a winch. It was very rare to be on typical trail run and not have at least one vehicle equipped with a winch. It is nice have, and obviously it can be very handy when a vehicle has flopped, slide off the trail, got stuck, need pulling up a waterfall. It’s more status bling than truly useful to me. That’s just my opinion – it may be worthless. Gnarls.
... Do you have any experience with a truetrac Gnarly?
i have 2 Detroits, front and rear in my 1989 LN106 hilux which is my DD
definitely Detroit Lockers
I would not spend the money on an ARB unless I won the Powerball. While 4-wheeling - flipping a locker on and off never made sense to me, and I never felt like disconnecting a locker, front or rear, would make any difference on the obstacle I was on. If an ARB is a choice for a daily driver and wheeler, it makes more sense to me to install one in the rear diff.
I don't really want to spend the money on the ARB personally. I am really interested in the truetrac though. I have heard good things about them. I am not a hardcore wheeler as of right now but I want to be as I slowly get practice in over time! I don't really know what I am looking at though when searching for one? I tend to overthink things a lot when buying stuff. Do you have any experience with a truetrac Gnarly? Do you maybe have a link to a website that has em? I don't like asking for this sort of help cause I dont want to waste anyones time or become a burden/annoyance. What would I have to do to install one? Do I need any replacement parts? I am slow on understanding how stuff works on vehicles. I will probably be having a shop install it to be safe and not ruin my gears by doing it myself.
Lockers, of any kind, will always want to push you in a straight line, which in my experience, will often push you off the line you wanted to be on, or making it hard to take the line you want. While this is less of an issue for the experienced wheeler, it can be a PITA for the novice/intermediate wheeler, and for those spotting them, as they don't have seat time necessary to compensate for this. I wheeled open diffs for almost 15yrs, and after 15yrs of running lockers, I still prefer wheeling an open diff as the default setting, for me, a selectable locker is no different than dual cases,and engage them only when only when needed.As Gnarly mentioned, trutracs are good, but getting them to engage when needed can be an issue, if you had dual cases, or an auto trans, it would be better, as you can use the brakes to engage it without stalling, a hand throttle can help with this. If it is one or the other, I would go with a standard mechanical over the trutrac.A new ARB isn't your only option, the Toyota e-locker is also available, and can usually be found used for about $600, though it does take some slight modification to the stock housing to install it.
Unfortunately I have seen a solenoid fail on the trail at a MCRoundup. The guy had a CO2 tank and it drained his tank and he couldn't operate either diff after that. It does seems like a rare occurrence
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