Diff Lock to 80 series cruiser..

Submitted: Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 19:05
ThreadID: 5906 Views:2220 Replies:7 FollowUps:13
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I have an 80 series cruiser, 1994, and am thinking of adding an ARB diff lock (air locker) to the rear diff . Or should I put the money into a vehicle mounted winch( I dont have the money for both)......I've been caught out a couple of times lately, with slippery steep climbs & I am now lacking confidence in the vehicles ability.....I've never had any experience with diff locks, & am hoping that it will greatly improve my offroad abilities, particularly in climbing ,slippery tracks, rock ledges, etc...Any info, from personal experience would be much appreciated.
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Reply By: Kev - (Cairns,QLD) - Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 19:27

Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 19:27
I would go for the locker before the winch as it will be more usefull the majority of the time. And if you 4wheel with others then you have there back up if totaly stuck .
I have Air lockers and a winch and if i had to choose between them i would keep the lockers. Don't forget if your out with Patrols ect they have good LSD diffs where Toyotas don't so your already behind the 8 ball.

AnswerID: 24620

Follow Up By: Kev - (Cairns,QLD) - Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 19:31

Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 19:31
Also you don't mention the type of tyre you run, if having trouble on a regular basis then you could consider a more agressive tyre. (i run BFG mud terrains)
No point having lockers if you still can't get traction !
FollowupID: 16549

Follow Up By: rowdy - Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 19:35

Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 19:35
Kev, thanks mate.....I have Coopers S/T's......pretty good offroad tyre...Do you think that I will see any real improvements with just the rear locker, over my standard (worn out) LSD......
FollowupID: 16551

Follow Up By: Kev - (Cairns,QLD) - Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 19:49

Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 19:49
With out a doubt.
Two weeks ago i saw a mate who drives a Patrol ute (LSD) climb a hill in 2wd (just to be a smart arse ) and watch others with no LSD or lockers struggle to make it in 4wd. They both ran Mud terrains.

Since then i don't under estimate a good LSD (or locker for that mater)

Don't forget the 80 series weighs approx 2.5 ton, sometimes we need all the help we can get !

FollowupID: 16556

Reply By: Truckster (Vic) - Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 20:54

Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 20:54
Lockers will get you further INTO trouble (mud swamp etc), where a winch will get you out of it before its a problem.

I went the Winch first. used it Second day I had it installed out Woods Point to get up a filthy hill, and then again later that day, winched as far as I could, then a 2 car(1 connected to the other by snatch), then another 4 snatch strap(yes was still a long way down the hill!) Snatch to the top!

What tires and pressures are you using, that could also be your problem with lacking grip.
AnswerID: 24630

Follow Up By: rowdy - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:03

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:03
Hey Truckster
Yer mate, you are probably right about the tyre pressures. I have cooper S/T's, which I feel are a good GP tyre, but I generally dont bother to reduce my pressures, until its too late - I'm always a bit scared of damaging a side wall , especially in the steep 'shaley' country that I usually get into....
FollowupID: 16629

Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 22:37

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 22:37
Threres a good write up on ST's in the latest club mag, Coopers gave a set to club to prove their worth.

Bloke took them on his hardest trip ever to the outback, he came back and bought them he was that impressed.

Pressures were critical though, everyone had flats, just different amounts of them.

Lookin at the photos, no wonder he called it the most remote trip he has done ever in his 25yrs+ of 4wding.
FollowupID: 16642

Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 22:39

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 22:39
Also in a sense, you have less chance of a flat with less pressure as the tire 'gives' a little..

Think of it as a partly inflated balloon. Stick a pin into a rock hard balloon, BANG.. half inflat a balloon, and try, you can push the pin in a little before it goes bang (this is how was explained at driver trainin') YMMV
FollowupID: 16643

Reply By: Member - Graham - Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 23:14

Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 23:14
Hi rowdy, I have had both on mine for 6 years, diff locks used most outings, it just
makes it less effort for the car, winch used 3 times, although handy if it's value your looking at, a hand winch is cheaper if needed but you'll have more pleasure with locker/s
AnswerID: 24649

Follow Up By: Tony - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 08:33

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 08:33
A Rear Diff Lock and a good set of Diamond Chains will get you all the places you want to go.

A couple of years ago heading up onto Davies High Plains (this is before the track was changed) the rain set in as we left the river and with twin diff locks still had to fit chains to the rear to get all the way to the top.

A group of vehicles following with no chains could not get past the first lot of red clay. They made a hugh mess of the track in their attempt to get through, but with chains on all you could see was the mark of the chains with the odd slip here and there.
FollowupID: 16595

Follow Up By: rowdy - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 19:59

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 19:59
G'day Graham,
Yer it looks like the locker........I like the sound of all this 'locker induced confidence'. And your dead right, its all about pleasure - thats why were there......Thanks for the input.
Hey Tony, That sounds like good advice - the chains would certainly increase the effectiveness of the locker....
FollowupID: 16628

Reply By: kezza - Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 23:28

Thursday, Jul 10, 2003 at 23:28

Good tyres a good rear LSD and a good air compressor and a fast way of letting your tyres down will be one of the cheaper ways of of getting out of strife 95% of the time.

Its amazing what you can climb with 12-20 psi in your tyres. (dont roll your tyres off the rims though - usually a danger under 14psi at anything above a crawl)

Check previous posts by me re GU TD patrol with air lockers (running MTRs) and GQ petrol patrol without lockers (running BFG MTs) and our experiments with tyre pressures on muddy hills. (dont forget both vehicles have very good rear LSDs in them with the best oil)

Basically the lower the tyre pressures on the 2 vehicles the less difference a front air locker made to the point where we wondered why we bothered with the air lockers. Dont get me wrong - its those extreme times when everything counts (revs, tyres, weight, skill, diffs, fear etc)- usually when a combination of rain and hills meet.

In my opinion if you have a diesel a good rear LSD or locker is essential and front lockers will make a lot of difference. If you have a petrol, a LSD or locker, a few spare revs and some good offroad skills - the front locker can be ignored in favour of lower tyre pressures and a good air pump. If really stuck a winch is the only option.

Ive recently come across a product which everyone should have - the "Joey" - enables you to use your spare as - a dual wheel - as an offset wheel to 'jack' the vehicle out of a hole - or use it as a simple winch driven off the rear wheel.

Depends on how much work you want to do vs how much money you want to spend on other solutions.. Ill be posting more info on these devices soon.

Hope this helps a bit

AnswerID: 24653

Follow Up By: Rowdy - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:45

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:45
Yer thanks Kezza,
I do have the 4.5 petrol, with some offroad skills - but it sounds like i have been ignoring the tyre pressure's to my detriment -Got any advice on what sort of pressures I should run, without asking for trouble, I mean i dont want to risk my tyres, given that clay quickly turns to shale in a lot of the areas i inhabit..........I'm generally running road pressures, at about 30 to 35 psi. Should i go back to say 20 / 22.
Yer mate, i'll follow up those other 'posts' you spoke of.
FollowupID: 16634

Reply By: mrdesmo - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 07:45

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 07:45
Hi rowdy,
I'd go the air locker, but as was mentioned already its tyre pressure that'll get you up/down/in/out most places, and with the air locker set up you got a compressor to pump up your tyres at the other end. I had a lockrite in the front of my old petrol 'lux, and although it was a bitch to steer it went anywhere (well almost!)
I got the ARB compressor, its got 3 outlets, two for lockers and the middle for an air hose.
Also, a good cond. second hand tirfor or whatever would only set you back about $300 - $400. They show up in the Trading Post from time to time. I reckon they are more useful than a front mount winch, as you can only go forwards with the electric, a tirfor will get you backwards, sideways, back on your wheels from a roll over, won't run your battery down if you can't start your vehicle etc etc...and cheaper too. That and Im not allowed to have one....yet!! Even if I do get one, I wont be selling my Tirfor in a hurry...
AnswerID: 24669

Follow Up By: Rowdy - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:20

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:20
Mr Desmo,
Thanks mate for the info...do all ARB air compressors have the three outlets as standard, or did you rig yours that way for convenience...The outlet to the air hose would be very handy. I imagine that you could run the outlet to a convenient "get-at" spot as well...
Is there any other tricks I should ask for, in the intial setup of the compressor, etc ?
Yer mate, i'm getting the message about tyre pressures......
FollowupID: 16630

Follow Up By: mrdesmo - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:41

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:41
Hi again,
I got the RDCKA model, comes with plug in wiring loom with relay, mounting bracket and reinforcing plate, pressure switch and instructions, very easy to instal if you are into that sort of thing.
Go to the ARB site and click on 'air compressors'. Yep, the outlets are standard, thats what sold me when I bought it. They are also completely servicable too.
It may be cheaper to buy the locker and compressor at the same time (I just lent out my latest catalog) There is a link on that site to order a free catldog to drool over, it takes a few days and it'll be in your letterbox. I havent installed the compressor in my 80 series yet, but when it was in my 'lux I had it mounted behind the rear seat with the hose rolled up behind there as well, and the switch on the dashboard. If you do mount an outlet in an easy to get at spot, try and keep it somewhere its not gunna fill up with mud and crap.

I believe on the diesel 80 people are mounting the compressors near the fuel filter...which is where mine is going. Ask the blokes at ARB, you'll probably save money if you mount the compressor yourself, but make sure its where they want it mounted for use with the difflocks later.

Also search this forum and you'll find talk of setting up resevoir tanks, something I'm going to do as soon as I get the time. That way you have compressed air as well.

Have fun mate..
FollowupID: 16633

Reply By: Steve from Drive Systems Victoria - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 10:57

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 10:57
There's an old cliche' in 4x4 circles; you buy a winch to get others up the hill,and a locker to get yourself up the same hill. All of the other responses are correct. A hand winch will get you up(if you have all day and a strong heart), the power winch will get you up(if you have the rest of the tackle and a couple of hours) or you can drive straight up with the locker.(most times). To get the most enjoyment and satisfaction out of 4x4ing and being confident in your vehicle, the locker is your best bet at first. However, this is if your main terrain for driving is, in fact, mountainous country. If you're driving is mainly sand and/or desert work, then I would put the winch first and the locker second. Lockers only give you potential for traction. If traction is marginal, ie in deep sand, then the wheels will bury themselves before you get enough momentum to ride over the soft stuff. In this situation, the winch may be your only salvation, provided you have something to hook it to! Winching up hills is not without it's hazards and should not be taken lightly. The potential for accidents or equipment failure is high. Faced with a 300 metre long climb that offers little or no traction is no fun and will most likely take you all day to winch. I know which method I would prefer to do, given the options.
AnswerID: 24678

Follow Up By: Rowdy - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:29

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:29
Yer mate, my main trouble comes from hilly country, in the central West of NSW, although I will soon be heading west, to the Strezlecki, Coopers Creek etc, but dont expect too much trouble out there -hopefully...
I also want to tackle a few of the more testing steep tracks around the National Parks scene & pull a camper trailer with me as well....
I hope I do get the results your suggesting, with the locker - my hard earned, has to be spent wisely.......
Thanks / Rowdy.
FollowupID: 16631

Reply By: Member - DOZER- Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 16:46

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 16:46
Hi I have twins in the 94 80 fzj auto and have much pleasure in helping others get up the same track i just drove up like it was tar...
Go the ARB rear, and next time you need to get into the front for a c/v repack....do the front aswell.
If you are good with a spanner, it isnt that hard to get one in cheaply, mine cost 1k each and i made the compresser.
Andrew wheredayathinkwer mike?
AnswerID: 24705

Follow Up By: Rowdy - Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:37

Friday, Jul 11, 2003 at 20:37
Thanks Dozer, but i'm more of a driver then an installer - I'd love to get the front as well, ... maybe one day.
I just hope that with the rear one I'll see a real improvement.
Given all the positive feedback, i'm sure i'm "on the right track"....

FollowupID: 16632

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