lokka diff lockers

Submitted: Wednesday, Jul 30, 2014 at 21:13
ThreadID: 108955 Views:3922 Replies:10 FollowUps:19
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Has anyone tried his product and how did you find it?There web page is http://www.4wdsystems.com.au/index.php?id=1 Thanks all
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Reply By: Whirlwinder - Wednesday, Jul 30, 2014 at 21:34

Wednesday, Jul 30, 2014 at 21:34
Hi Stuart and Gunny,
I have had a Lock Right brand of the same design in the front of an 80 series for 15 years. The car is part time 4WD so it isn't working all the time but when the front hubs are locked and 4WD selected the locker works a treat. The design is really an auto-unlocker as it is locked until the outside wheel revolves faster because of the different speeds of the front wheels on a turn and then it unlocks only to relock when wheels are doing the same speeds again.
Maybe not as "sexy" as a $3000 Air locker but mine works a treat at keeping both front wheels turning at the same speed when one is off the ground.
However, I can't vouch for the quality of the Lokka brand you asked about.
Ian
AnswerID: 536873

Follow Up By: 2000 Red Rodeo - Wednesday, Jul 30, 2014 at 22:35

Wednesday, Jul 30, 2014 at 22:35
I have one in the front of my Rodeo for at least 6 years. As Ian mentioned it is more an unlocker. As in allowing a wheel to spin quicker (for turning) while maintaining power to both front wheels.

IMO I prefer it to a air locker as it is always adding some assistance when in 4wd.

the Rodeo has an LSD in the rear, the combo works well, and makes up for the limitations of torsion bar suspension at the front

For the price well worth it
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FollowupID: 821119

Reply By: mikehzz - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 00:51

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 00:51
I had a Lokka from them in the rear of my Jeep diesel. I had to remove it because the Mercedes gearbox in the diesel Jeep kept throwing the car into limp mode when going through a roundabout, it was very touchy about the abs sensors. I would have to stop and turn the car off and on again to get back to normal. I have since found this to be very common on that gearbox and auto lockers. Funnily enough, petrol Jeeps with US gearboxes are not affected and work fine with the Lokka. I have an LSD in the rear now with no problems...it was an expensive exercise all up.
AnswerID: 536884

Reply By: Crusier 91 - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 08:11

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 08:11
Ive been out on tracks (sand/dirt) with 2 patrols with front lokka diff lockers. They work very well.
A few down sides that every one mentions is the inconvenience of have to get in and out of the cab to active them.

Having them constantly on in sand is ok until you need to turn sharper corners with a little more momentum, you wont stay on the track.

On dry dirt tracks its the same, guys can not be bothered to get out and disengage the lokka very few km's when turning or doing U turns and the stress put on the diff is huge.

For these reasons I went front and rear air lockers, convenience and control at a flick of the switch at your finger tips.
AnswerID: 536886

Follow Up By: mikehzz - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 10:31

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 10:31
Lokkas are always on. Are you talking about engaging the front hubs? With a rear Lokka you get the characteristic clickety click as it disengages temporarily around corners on tar.
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FollowupID: 821136

Follow Up By: gbc - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 10:47

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 10:47
Please ignore cruiser91's reply - it is clear they have no clue about auto lockers.

I had a Lokka brand front locker in both an 80 series and a hilux. They work perfectly well. Most of the horror stories you hear about them can be traced back to backyard installs. Care needs to be taken assembling and installing them like any mechanical device, but once they are in they never need touching again. You WILL have a slightly stronger 'return to centre' feel on the steering wheel and you WILL have a slightly larger turning circle on a tight turn in 4wd. You WILL NOT exit the track due to anything caused by an auto locker. You DO NOT exit a vehicle to engage or disengage ANY sort of locker.
I have had both auto and air lockers. So long as you have ANY type of locker you are ahead of the game in the traction department.

I assume you have a part time 4wd to install an auto locker into?
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FollowupID: 821138

Follow Up By: Batt's - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 10:54

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 10:54
Wow that sounds a bit confusing so if I'm on the sand and want to turn a sharp corner you reckon I need to get out unlock the hubs to disengage the lokka, then I would end up bogged because I'm in 2WD now on the sand. I think you have worded it incorrectly or have a different system because once you have selected 4WD it is always working and adjusting to suit the terrain.
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FollowupID: 821140

Follow Up By: Crusier 91 - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 10:57

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 10:57
Hi Mike,

These Patrols only had front Lokka's. They had to manually engage hubs in order for Lokka to work.

I remember our trip to Salt Creek Beach where the patrols joined us. We played around on the sand hill via Tea Tree Crossing, the Patrols front diffs were copping a hiding every time they did a U turn down the bottom of the sand hill where the dirt track is. Although the track was loose enough for the inside tyre to slip it puts enormous strain on the diff.

Even cornering into the spot where we camped on the beach they had trouble staying on the track coming in, not that they could make it, they just over ride tighter corners because having any type of lockers engaged on the front on sand tracks tends to drive you forward in a straight line even in cornering.

Hence I chose air lockers so I can disengage prior to cornering and re-engage out of the corner.

They only problem I have had with air lockers is that I run extractors with a 2.5in exhaust system, the rear air line was installed a little to close to the exhaust system and melted the air line, relocated line and all is good.
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FollowupID: 821142

Follow Up By: mikehzz - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 11:43

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 11:43
I understand now. Your Lokka was always on but only worked if you engaged the hubs. The air locker would be much better because you could leave the hubs engaged and choose when the air locker locked. With the air locker in the unlocked position then you would have 4wd and steering. Turn on the front locker and your steering goes out the window. Cheers.
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FollowupID: 821147

Follow Up By: gbc - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 11:48

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 11:48
OMG!!!! Did you lot miss the second lever in the cab of a patrol? Is it school holidays?
Stop guessing, you are confusing yourselves and a poor individual who asked a legitimate question and is being fed a load of tripe.
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FollowupID: 821148

Follow Up By: mikehzz - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 12:00

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 12:00
It all makes sense if the Patrol has manual free wheeling hubs fitted on the front....doesn't it?
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FollowupID: 821151

Follow Up By: Lex M - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 12:07

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 12:07
I've had one in the front for years. Works fine. All that tripe above is characteristic of a lokka that hasn't been setup accurately. The correct clearances are essential for it to work correctly.

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FollowupID: 821152

Follow Up By: Member - Stuart and Gunny - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 12:38

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 12:38
Hi guys im getting to the stage of being none the wiser with all these different opinions.If i try a lokka i will have it fitted by the company in Adelaide not myself.Thanks all
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FollowupID: 821153

Follow Up By: garrycol - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 13:05

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 13:05
Have you considered a Detroit Locker - basically similar to a Lokka but is a bit better - basically build etc.

Some comments on these lockers generally - not specific to either brand but the comments apply to both.

In a constant 4wd - both go well in the back and have not adverse impact on the vehicle. Cannot go in the front as the locker is locked all the time (as mentioned they are an unlocker) so impacts steering preventing the individual front wheels turning on there own radius - manifests itself in exceptionally tight steering - almost impossible to turn on hard surfaces and difficult on loose surfaces - also alluded to.

Part time 4wds with freewheeling hubs - again in my view in the rear is preferred but many vehicles have limited slip in the rear so why replace this so the lockker goes in the front. The front is locked but in 2wd and fwh disengaged no issue as nothing is turning. Lock the front hubs (even if in 2wd) and as mentioned steering gets very heavy as each front wheel is locked to each other. Now when offroad is not such an issue as steering stays relatively light as individual wheels can slip on the surface and determine their own path. On tight surfaced where the wheels cannot slip turning can be hard.

All this is no different to have a airlocker in the front with it activated.

So the impact if you have a lockka in the front with front hubs locked is heavier steering - how heavy depends on the surface - in mud probably no issue, on rocks roads probably no issue, on sand a bit heavy, on dirt road very heavy and on bitumen almost impossible to turn.

Garry
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FollowupID: 821154

Follow Up By: gbc - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 14:11

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 14:11
Again, Incorrect information.

If the hubs are engaged, the steering does not become heavier unless you are in 4 WD - the locker CANNOT work unless it is being driven by the driveshaft.

It is completely different to having an air locker in front - it has differential action. People who have driven only air lockers making assumptions is where half this rubbish comes from.

If you turn on a hard surface and the steering comes up hard, you have transfer windup. An auto locker CANNOT wind up on a hard surface unless you have enough horsepower and are doing something silly enough to get both front wheels spinning on said hard surface.




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FollowupID: 821160

Follow Up By: garrycol - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 14:44

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 14:44
I have never driven an airlocker so not up on them - I have detroits and the locker locks the axles irrespective of drive into it = stays locked until the torque from the wheels overrides the locking mechanism and it unlocks a "click" or two. In a front diff this will load the steering up.

Was just trying to keep the explanations simple so the OP might get an idea - but some people keep wanting to go into the minutia hence some confusion.
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FollowupID: 821163

Follow Up By: Whirlwinder - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 14:56

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 14:56
gbc, You are right. When in 4WD with front hubs locked and making a turn, the outside wheel is turned faster by the ground and unlocks the Lokka. The Lokka will re lock itself when the wheel speeds are the same. Hence, when climbing a rocky hill and one wheel in off the ground it still turns and the speed of the grounded wheel. The lokka unlocks only when one wheel is forced to turn faster than the other.
I have had mine for 15 years or so and it has been fantastic, especially for the price. Yes, the steering is a little bit harder in corners but as soon as it unlocks all is normal again.
Note. I fitted it myself in a day easily. I am a builder(or was) and only self taught mechanic and it was dead easy to fit.
I think there is a lot of missinformed comment about them above.
Regards, Ian
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FollowupID: 821165

Follow Up By: Lex M - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 21:20

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 21:20
Garrycol posted:
"I have detroits and the locker locks the axles irrespective of drive into it = stays locked until the torque from the wheels overrides the locking mechanism and it unlocks a "click" or two. In a front diff this will load the steering up."

This does not happen with a lokka. The principle is different. With no drive into it a lokka will not stay locked.
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FollowupID: 821197

Follow Up By: Member - Stuart and Gunny - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 21:27

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 21:27
Lex M please explain more.How do you see it working and what do you believe is fact and crap
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FollowupID: 821198

Follow Up By: mikehzz - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 23:29

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 23:29
Really it's very simple, a Lokka is always locked unless you go around a corner on a surface with good traction and the force difference between the inside wheel and the outside wheel rotating at different speeds causes the Lokka to unlock until the wheels start rotating at the same speed again causing it to lock again. A wheel in the air won't cause it to unlock because there is no force acting on it. When the Lokka is forced open there is a click click sound that can be a little annoying for some. It is absolutely correct that they be installed in the right manner as there are fine tolerances that have to be maintained for trouble free operation. As far as a Lokka is concerned, it is an auto locker and there is no turning them on or off. I think the confusion was from the other fellow getting out and clicking his manual freewheeling hubs on. Personally, having had one in for about a year, I didn't really like the effect it had on normal drivability. Mine was in the rear and you could feel the back wheels fighting each other on roundabouts, corners and especially in tight car parks. Great off road though.
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FollowupID: 821204

Follow Up By: gbc - Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 05:17

Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 05:17
Here,

Pay particular attention to points 3a and 3b where it talks about engine torque needing to be fed into the locker for it to operate. Also look up the FAQ page on the same site and you'll get a fair understanding of what they are and how they work.

http://www.4wdsystems.com.au/index.php?id=122

Cheers
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FollowupID: 821205

Reply By: Member - Stuart and Gunny - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 12:52

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 12:52
Hi all if your interested in my 4x4(kennel on wheels) this is a previous posthttp://www.exploroz.com/Forum/Topic/104224/The_kennel_on_wheels_is_nearly_finishedAdvice_please.aspx?ky=&sn=Member+-+Stuart+and+Gunny&p=%2fForum%2fDefault.aspx%3fs%3d1%26sn%3dMember%2b-%2bStuart%2band%2bGunny%26pn%3d1
Since then i have had another 150 amp battery fitted,giving me 2x 150 amp battery's.More work done on the rear springs to raise the back another 35mm by Stan at Cairns and stuffed the grey water tank trying to do a part of OTT.This kennel has been all over the top end of Australia plus the Bloomfield track and many others without a problem.Currently we are at Mt surprise heading to Darwin via Sav way.
AnswerID: 536897

Reply By: 671 - Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 23:26

Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 at 23:26
Stuart and Gunny

I have had a 4WD Systems Lokka in the front of a Hilux for going on eight years. The first time I used it was on the first day of a 10 day trip in the Victorian High Country. The steering instantly felt ever so slightly heavier. Ten minutes later I was wheeling the car around steep hair pin bends, over huge rocks and through rivers and it was not causing me any concern at all.

I disagree with the suggestion that they are more like unlockers than lockers. They are almost always unlocked, or in the process of unlocking, because it is very rare for two wheels to turn at exactly the same speed in off road situations. One is always rolling up over a rock or down through a hole etc.

The same thing occurs even on a freeway. I just did a few calculations with my size tyres. If one was as little as 1 mm smaller in diameter than the other due to wear or whatever and, assuming you were driving on a billiard table smooth road surface in a straight line, that wheel would do seven more turns than the other over a 10 k distance. The Lokka would allow that to happen. You would not hear the clicking as the teeth slid up and over each other because it would be happening very slowly but it would still be happening.

It is for that reason you can fit an auto locker in the rear and drive around town or on sealed highways all day without tearing your tyres to pieces. Try doing that with a manual locker engaged.

I have only had one experience of it causing problems with the steering and that was while I was climbing up a curved muddy slope about forty metres long. The wheels were obviously locked and the steering developed a mind of its own. Exactly the same thing would have happened if I had a manual locker.

The reason I put it in the front was I could not see the point in being content to loose the front axle when one wheel lost traction, particularly on steep hills, and then expect the rear axle to keep the car going. I had a few problems with that before I fitted the Lokka. The difference it has made is unbelievable.

I have also driven the car on desert sand hills. I have never had a problem on any of them but I don't know if the Lokka helped of not.

The same applies to mountain tracks. A driving front wheel on the inside of a steep corner could loose traction.The outside wheel, which would have been rolling ahead on a larger radius, would lock instantly and take over driving. The inside wheel could regain traction a few seconds later. The diff. would immediately start to unlock as the outside wheel started rolling ahead again and the driver would be none the wiser.

There is one point that you have to be careful of though if you have one fitted in the rear and are driving on sealed roads, especially wet ones. If you accelerate too quickly anywhere, particularly coming out of a sharp corner, the inside wheel could loose traction. If that happens the Lokka will instantly lock and you may experience some rear wheel steering. I think this is why car manufacturers do not use auto lockers. Far too many drivers would get into trouble with them.
AnswerID: 536928

Follow Up By: Lex M - Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 12:57

Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 12:57
Agrre totally with 671 except for:

"There is one point that you have to be careful of though if you have one fitted in the rear and are driving on sealed roads, especially wet ones. If you accelerate too quickly anywhere, particularly coming out of a sharp corner, the inside wheel could loose traction. If that happens the Lokka will instantly lock and you may experience some rear wheel steering. I think this is why car manufacturers do not use auto lockers. Far too many drivers would get into trouble with them."

Not unique to a lokka. The same thing happens with a LSD in the rear. And drivers get into trouble with that in the wet..
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FollowupID: 821222

Reply By: Member Kerry W (WA) - Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 10:09

Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 10:09
Have had a Lokka in the front of a Patrol for about 9 years - its brilliant.

It is very simple, robust and will not wear out if installed correctly.
Always works, (no airlines and compressors to fail)
I always have steering in soft sand, mud and when climbing steep slippery slopes. (A mates front air locker made it almost impossible to negotiate a fallen tree on a steep slope. If the locker was on he could not steer around the obstacle as the 2 steer wheels turned at the same rate together dragging him in a straight line towards the tree. If he disengaged the locker he could not move as he didnt have enough traction. Ended up using the winch. In that situation I had no problems at all).

Ensure the Lokka is installed correctly and FINALLY tested with the vehicle up - wheels off the ground - turn each wheel (on the axle with the lokka) - there should be equal turning pressure forwards and backwards on each wheel with the hubs locked in. You will hear the Lokka clicking as it works its magic.

Read their instructions they are very comprehensive and foolproof.

It is that simple!

Hope this helps
Kerry W (Qld)
Security is mostly a superstition. It doesnt exist in nature. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.
-Helen Keller

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AnswerID: 536948

Reply By: Member - Craig F (WA) - Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 14:16

Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 14:16
I have had a 4WD Systems Lokka a Detroit Soft Lock and now ARB. I had no issue with the Lokka which was fitted into the front of a 2003 Hilux. Yes the steering was different but never an issue. My Hilux was an auto and this makes a lot of difference as you can still be on the move but vary the torque to the wheels when turning by easing off the pedal. I now have a manual Patrol with the ARB lockers fitted front and back. My opinion based on using the two different types over ten years would be a Detroit auto (Un) locker if the car was an auto and a Eaton or ARB in a manual car.

All are better than nothing.
As stated most issues with lockers are due to the installation not being done correctly. Both my brother and I had 4wd System Lokkas fitted around the same time. His made a very loud clicking noises and an incredible Bang when disengaging mine was almost silent.
AnswerID: 536960

Reply By: Member Kerry W (WA) - Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 18:05

Friday, Aug 01, 2014 at 18:05
I think after reading some of the comments a few may have one of these fitted.




This is cheaper and simpler.

Bragging rights at least!
Kerry W (Qld)
Security is mostly a superstition. It doesnt exist in nature. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.
-Helen Keller

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AnswerID: 536968

Reply By: 749 - Tuesday, Aug 05, 2014 at 04:07

Tuesday, Aug 05, 2014 at 04:07
I've had one for 8 years on my GU Patrol, never had any trouble at all, friends have the ARB and have trouble now and then. Purge valve and sometimes won't turn on or off. You can't steer around corners with ARB when turned on and sometimes you need that traction to get around corners. People that knock lokka brand have never had one, and hate the fact they paid 3 times more.

It's like Nissan or Toyota , or Engel or Waeco.

Try driving both types.

AnswerID: 537184

Reply By: just - Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 16:01

Wednesday, Aug 06, 2014 at 16:01
Hi guys. I'm on my third nissan withfront lokkas, two GU and a GQ. I've always put the lockka on the front as the LSD is too good to replace. Been thru the Simpson 8 times both on and off track including the madigan line, the vic Alps 3 times and many other places and never had a problem in fact I reckon they're excellent, turning extreme and hazardous 4wding into pleasurable driving. Some minor driver adjustments are necessary ie smooth and consistent accel. useage but easy to learn. The best thing is that they're set and forget and no maintenance! Been with others with air lockers and as Murphy would have it, right in the middle of nowhere, on some extreme track, a vehicle has a problem with the air compressor and no more locker.
I would highly recommend, for the front diff at least!
AnswerID: 537249

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