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Unread 08-06-2012, 01:21 PM   #1
nybklein
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XJ lockers!

Ive watched countless youtube videos and sat in jeeps where the after market lockers help the drivers get out of some real hairy S#@&. After doing some research, I am interested in the lockers that you have the option to engage and disengage from the drivers seat, I'm unsure of the "automatic"/"lunchbox" lockers out there...I currently have a 6.5" lift running 33's and dana 30, dana 35. Anybody have any suggestions for what i should buy? *sidenote: this XJ is my daily driver.

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Unread 08-06-2012, 01:29 PM   #2
mountainjock
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Not sure on the lockers, but I am sure people are going to give you the "You can't run 33's on the D35 or the world will explode" rant. The selectable lockers are what I am planning. I think the auto lockers might make it kinda unpredictable in the snow, and I don't want my woman getting in a wreck driving to work in a storm.
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Unread 08-06-2012, 01:34 PM   #3
biffgnar
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For selectables you have air, cable or electric. Most popular probably air (ARB) followed by cable (OX) with electric a distant third. ARB v. OX threads can get rather extensive. Use the search function and I'm sure you'll find plenty. I'm very happy with the ARBs in my TJ and will likely put them in my XJ also.
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Unread 08-06-2012, 01:42 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nybklein View Post
Ive watched countless youtube videos and sat in jeeps where the after market lockers help the drivers get out of some real hairy S#@&. After doing some research, I am interested in the lockers that you have the option to engage and disengage from the drivers seat, I'm unsure of the "automatic"/"lunchbox" lockers out there...I currently have a 6.5" lift running 33's and dana 30, dana 35. Anybody have any suggestions for what i should buy? *sidenote: this XJ is my daily driver.
My guess is you're gonna get all kinds of answers with all kinds of opinions and utimately you will still end up sifting through tons of information. I think most people are gonna recommend selectable for a dd, but tons of XJ peeps run lunchboxes in their dd's.

Myself - I opted for an Aussie lunchbox style because they are cheaper than selectables, easy to install, and my XJ is not a dd.
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Unread 08-06-2012, 01:44 PM   #5
ltrail
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DD with lockers takes getting used to with auto or lunchbox styles. Arb and ox are great but the added options leaves the wallet sad and droopy. I love the selectable idea but I'm cheap as crap so I don't go that route. If the wallet allows (what am I saying if the wife allows lol) do it. If the cost is in your range the option is great!
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Unread 08-06-2012, 02:02 PM   #6
chriskeenan
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I DD mine with a auto locker in front, no issues, rear is still open though.
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Unread 08-06-2012, 08:56 PM   #7
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I ran my old XJ with an Aussie in the front as a DD. You will never notice a front lunchbox locker in 2wd, because they only engage when there is power going through the diff. If you live somewhere where it snow, the lunchbox will suck if you use 4wd in the snow and ice.
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Unread 08-07-2012, 03:02 AM   #8
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Auto lokcer -vs. selectable, there's one big bonus for both on-road and off-road use: you can decide exactly when to keep the lockers on or off. For road use locker's aren't needed much at all (severe winter weather may require that, but that's about it), and on the trails you do not want an auto locker when driving a slippery sideways-inclined road. You will end up sideway and/or in a ditch

Auto lockers are cheaper, lunchbox lockers are very easy and cheap to install, and even a Detroit locker/ truqtrack costs about 30-50% less than selectable lockers. ARB needs a compressor, OX needs to cable actuator system, and they both cost quite a lot. Eaton E-locker is electric (very similar to what TJ and JK Wrangler Rubicons use), wires/ switches/ relays are all included.

Quote:
Originally Posted by biffgnar View Post
For selectables you have air, cable or electric. Most popular probably air (ARB) followed by cable (OX) with electric a distant third. ARB v. OX threads can get rather extensive. Use the search function and I'm sure you'll find plenty. I'm very happy with the ARBs in my TJ and will likely put them in my XJ also.
I've had both an ARB front locker and now I've got an Eaton e-locker - would never get an ARB after running the e-locker

No need for an air compressor, no problems with locker engagement in cold weather, no air leaks. Eaton sure needs the two wires for the locker as well which can snap, but IMHO it's a far better choise and easier trail fix would they snap. Smoother engament too. Overall cost is cheaper.

Some people have had problems with the locking mechanism breaking in the Eatons, but ARBs do that as well (not as common though). Avoiding full/ part throttle locker engagement should help in keeping the locker good.
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Unread 08-07-2012, 08:07 AM   #9
djb383
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WHAT??????.....how will a auto-locker (lunchbox) suck in snow and ice? Is it not a traction enhanced diff? Isn't more traction better? Lots of rear drive vehicles come from the factory with a traction enhanced rear diff and people, even women, drive them daily, even on snow and ice.
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Unread 08-07-2012, 09:57 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by djb383 View Post
WHAT??????.....how will a auto-locker (lunchbox) suck in snow and ice? Is it not a traction enhanced diff? Isn't more traction better? Lots of rear drive vehicles come from the factory with a traction enhanced rear diff and people, even women, drive them daily, even on snow and ice.
Because they lock up and kick you side ways, lot of factory vehicles have limited slip diffs that wont fully lock up and or traction control to send breaking power to spinning wheels.

In the rear a locker in snow is managbale it just takes getting used too. A little two much throttle and you will lose it pretty easily.

The front is another story. If your just trying to DD your vehicle to work and need the 4wd because of the snow, the front locker will push you all over the place because its locked up from spinning. Its managable but really sucks if your just trying to get down the road.
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Unread 08-07-2012, 10:10 AM   #11
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In the rear a locker in snow is managbale it just takes getting used too. A little two much throttle and you will lose it pretty easily.
I have a 44 to put in the rear of my XJ and found a used Spartan that I am hoping to buy. This is my DD, and I am hoping the learning curve isn't too steep...
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Unread 08-07-2012, 10:19 AM   #12
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I have a 44 to put in the rear of my XJ and found a used Spartan that I am hoping to buy. This is my DD, and I am hoping the learning curve isn't too steep...
its not, just dont apply power through turns and it wont lock up
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Unread 08-07-2012, 10:33 AM   #13
djb383
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Originally Posted by whitexj98 View Post
Because they lock up and kick you side ways, lot of factory vehicles have limited slip diffs that wont fully lock up and or traction control to send breaking power to spinning wheels.

In the rear a locker in snow is managbale it just takes getting used too. A little two much throttle and you will lose it pretty easily.

The front is another story. If your just trying to DD your vehicle to work and need the 4wd because of the snow, the front locker will push you all over the place because its locked up from spinning. Its managable but really sucks if your just trying to get down the road.
Some folks should have a restriction on their drivers license saying "sunny, dry weather driving only". A clutch type LSD (with good clutches) and a auto-locker (both in the rear) will perform virtually identical to each other on snow/ice. The SFB driving syndrome/style is the problem when driving on snow/ice, not a traction enhanced rear diff.
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Unread 08-07-2012, 11:23 AM   #14
Timo_90xj
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djb383 View Post
WHAT??????.....how will a auto-locker (lunchbox) suck in snow and ice? Is it not a traction enhanced diff? Isn't more traction better? Lots of rear drive vehicles come from the factory with a traction enhanced rear diff and people, even women, drive them daily, even on snow and ice.
Quote:
Originally Posted by djb383 View Post
A clutch type LSD (with good clutches) and a auto-locker (both in the rear) will perform virtually identical to each other on snow/ice. The SFB driving syndrome/style is the problem when driving on snow/ice, not a traction enhanced rear diff.
A limited slip behaves different than a full locker does.

I've had five vehicles that have had limited slip rear diffs, two of them being RWD, three of them being 4wd (2 XJs with 242, and the ZJ with the AWD)), and also one rRWD with on open diff. The open rear diff RWD was by the worst one of all of them. No grip and very very unpredicable behaviour in slippery weathe r(you would either slide or not slide on a corner).

All of the LSD- equipped vehicles have been very predictable, provided good grip and won't fishtail allover the road unless you want to.

I also had an auto locker on both of my XJs in the rear; in snow/ ice it was just as predictable as the LSDs, but it was more prone to getting the rear sideways, even under easy driving and a light skinny pedal. You get used to it though.

As far as front auto lockers go, they suck BIG time in snow or ice. You get a lot of understeer, greatly increased turning radius, etc.. IMO it is a very bad choice for a DD, or even a trail rig if you constantly drive in snowy or icy conditions during winter. In many places RWD (either LSD or locked) won't cut in even on the roads during winter, but in 4wd if you have an auto-lockedr front, it'll make driving pretty miserable. You may get used to it, but it is still pretty damn horrible to drive.

So in this case, more traction is not necessarily a good thing..


Quote:
Originally Posted by whitexj98 View Post
Because they lock up and kick you side ways, lot of factory vehicles have limited slip diffs that wont fully lock up and or traction control to send breaking power to spinning wheels. In the rear a locker in snow is managbale it just takes getting used too. A little two much throttle and you will lose it pretty easily.

The front is another story. If your just trying to DD your vehicle to work and need the 4wd because of the snow, the front locker will push you all over the place because its locked up from spinning. Its managable but really sucks if your just trying to get down the road.
If you know how to control a vehicle ín slippery weather, you won't loose it even with a rear auto locker - but it will occasionally kick the rear sideways a little. IMO it's very predictable when that is going to happen so it's not really a problem. However, in very slippery weather I'd use 4wd because of the possibility, the front pulling will help keep the rear from getting sideways so easily. That's what I did with my XJs, depending on road conditions I used either 4FT or 4HI.

For the front locker part, I could not agree more
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Unread 08-07-2012, 11:53 AM   #15
ltrail
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I ran 4 hi all the time in the snow and the locker never gave trouble. Be realistic though also. Hoping you're not trying to go 79 mph in the snow. Most of our snow adventures didn't see more than 40-45mph.

As with anything the common sense comes in play here. Heavy pedal will put you in the ditch with an open diff so drive like its an icy road and there's no trouble.
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