Hey guys, I'm a mechanical engineering student and for one of my final projects in my CAD (catia) class I designed a zero-steer (found on the jeep hurricane) system. I have to state the practical uses for my design. So, I was just wondering if you guys could help me out. So the question basically is:
-How would such a system (turning 360 degrees in the same spot- zero turing radius) benifit off road driving?
Well - the best thing I could think of as a practical use would be parking downtown. There are times that I have tried to park, and no matter what I did, my vehicle would not fit into the space.
Just to let you know, I have parked long-box trucks into spaces where there was only 2" of space between the front and rear of the truck by the time I was finished parking it. Ya - there might have been a couple of little "bumps" in the process, but nothing that would cause damage. In fact, I did that very thing last night parking between two of my other vehicles, just to see if I could do it. I did it!
Hello, my name is Vance and I am a Jeepaholic. Its better to be naked with your friends, than to be clothed with your enemies
Silver 2006 TJ Unlimited, zombie ready as the daily-driver
The Hurricane's steering system is a marvel of engineering all by itself. There are multiple steering modes using four-wheel independent steering. That means that each wheel can turn separately from the others.
In standard steering mode, the rear wheels turn in the opposite direction to the front wheels, which tightens the turning radius and makes for more accurate steering. In a second mode, the rear wheels turn in the same direction as the front wheels, meaning the Hurricane can "crab-steer" -- move to the side without changing the direction that it faces.
A third mode, utilizing the "T-Box Zero Steer" mechanism, allows all four wheels to "toe-in" and changes the drive direction to each wheel so that they alternate. The result? The Jeep Hurricane has a turning radius of zero. The Hurricane can actually rotate in place.
Eh, i copied and pasted it, but closed the window before I could give proper referance.
I would say that the crab steer would be really helpful when your in the mud. If you're not getting anywhere you can creep to the side and hopefull get one sides tired onto the wall, aim for better lines, perform safer high speed lane changes, and I can see it being beneficial making maneuvers in the snow/ice.
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I once went down a trail that was ment for ATV's. I didn't belive it at first untill the trail became VERY narrow and then finall came into a double s turn with a steep decline. I have to do almost a 20 point turn all the while with all the other guys standing on my rockers and passenger side to keep me from flipping. Had I had zero steer, I would of effortlessly turned around and been on with me day.
In the city, parellel parking difficulty would be a thing of the past.