Free Wheel hubs & Auto Lockers

Transmissions, Transfer Boxes, Axles, Drive Shafts
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hugejp
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Free Wheel hubs & Auto Lockers

Post by hugejp » 17 Jul 2018 16:21

So hopefully my stupidity can help some of you in the future...

Earlier this year I did an axle swap on my Auto 4.8(we put in manual 4.8 axles), this was mainly to get my hands on the beefier rear diff, bigger side-shafts & the 4.3ratios.

The Jump from the STD Auto 3.55ratio to the Manual 4.3ratio was great, she pulled like train, but I did have a bit of a vibration over 140km/h & the steering was a little heavy, so I had all the props & wheels balanced (twice), but it was still there so I decided to live with it.

There was also a leak on the PS pump so I thought that was the reason for the steering being a bit kek... we fixed the leak,but it wasn't much better.

A few months later I then had a Lock Right Auto Locker fitted & due to time issues I had to wait a few weeks to get the Manual Free Wheel Hubs fitted to complete the setup I wanted - "Front Auto Locker with Manual Hubs"

During this time I noticed a few things that I probably didn't pick up before, the steering was now even heavier & the vibe over 140km/h was also more aggressive.

I also noticed that from time to time the LockRight would ratchet "click-click" in corners on the highway & in tight turns even with the Auto Hubs in the "AUTO" position.

So this is when I thought about all the symptoms together & the cumulative cause of my issues & it started making sense... but still this was all just a theory.

So all along it could have been the case that the "swapped" axles had tight Auto Hubs (this happens often without regular use & servicing) that were engaging on & off, this can happen if the prop slightly turns from the transfer causing drag on the steering & a vibe a high speed???

The only way to test this was to finally pull finger & have the manual hubs fitted & see if it made a difference.

WELL... The new hubs went on & I took her for a test spin & let me tell you!!!! This old girl went like a scalded cat on crack!!! The steering is light as a feather, the vibe is gone & the improvement in acceleration is crazy!

I really can not believe the change, it really is a different car to drive.

I believe the issue from the beginning was that after the axle swap I did not know what to expect performance wise & the new gears did provide a big jump forward from STD so I was happy even then with the gains that were made.

All the little issues I picked up along the way seemed to be stand alone problems, I never looked at them as related at all. So it looks like I have been driving around for 6 months with the front hubs intermittently engaged & did not notice it because the diff was "OPEN". With the addition of the LockRight, the Auto hubs would engage more often due to more torque from the "joined" side-shafts & it became more noticeable due to the "click-click" of the LockRight. This added to the weight of the steering & the increased vibe at high speed.

I actually think I may also get a few more km/litre without the front diff taking up power spinning for no reason. All is right with the world again. I will update on the fuel consumption at a later date.

So, after all that I guess my message is... Please check the state of your hubs & service them, it could be the source of a few problems you didn't even know you had & the solution to few that you never thought were related.

IMHO - If you do install a front Auto Locker make sure you fit Manual Hubs.
#MANUAL HUBS FOREVER.
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Re: Free Wheel hubs & Auto Lockers

Post by ricster » 17 Jul 2018 16:30

There is no such thing as stupidity bud..... we call it a learning curve....hahahaha

That is excellent news !!!
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Re: Free Wheel hubs & Auto Lockers

Post by hugejp » 17 Jul 2018 17:03

Hahaha!

You are too kind boet!

I just hope the seals inside didnt get damaged with the extra wear???
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Re: Free Wheel hubs & Auto Lockers

Post by Peter Connan » 17 Jul 2018 18:05

I doubt the seals would have gotten damaged, as part of their maintenance procedure is to lock the hubs once in a while.

But I often drive for extended periods with the hubs locked, and have never noticed it making any difference to the performance, the weight of the steering or even really the fuel consumption.

Is there any chance your transfer case is/was engaged as well?
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Re: Free Wheel hubs & Auto Lockers

Post by hugejp » 17 Jul 2018 18:29

Nope, :biggrin: definitely in 2wd.
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Re: Free Wheel hubs & Auto Lockers

Post by ricster » 18 Jul 2018 08:17

Peter, If I lock my auto hubs manually I can definitively feel the resistance on my Patrol. There is a distinct stiffening on the feel of the steering wheel when turning. Power wise, just a slight bit of drag, but nothing worth writing home about.
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Re: Free Wheel hubs & Auto Lockers

Post by offroadbiker » 18 Jul 2018 08:43

Not on the GQ, I also leave them locked sometimes between destinations and don't feel anny change in steering or so...
Dirk
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Re: Free Wheel hubs & Auto Lockers

Post by hugejp » 18 Jul 2018 10:11

Thanks for the input gents!

I am sure my obsevations are not all technically correct, or if its all in my head or not, that is another story all together. :rolling:

All I know is that the drive is so much nicer & I have a big smile on my face.

:thumbup:
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