Alternatives to a Locker Diff - Defender Source
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Old December 1st, 2011, 08:55 PM
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Alternatives to a Locker Diff

B/c I have a restless mind, i thought of this last night and figured I'd get everyones input.

I understand the purpose of a locker. Keep both wheels on that axel (or both drive shafts if its a center diff), spinning at the same rate regardless of what the other wheel is doing.

Now, why wouldn't a limited slip differential do the exact same thing. With a limited slip, once one wheel starts turning at a drastically different rate than the other, it "locks" and acts the same as a locker doesn't it?

Wouldn't a LSD have the same effect as a locker diff, without having to deal with air hoses, compressors, or electronics?

Being I work for Eaton (makers of the trutrac and a million other products), i figured why not just get one of these instead?

Thanks in advance!
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Old December 1st, 2011, 09:11 PM
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The LSD never "locks". It transmits more torque to the other wheel. Usually this is 2 to 3 times as much. If one whelel is in the air zero times three is zero. Traction control can really help here as it applies torque to the spinning wheel, forcing much more torque to the other wheel.

The other problem is that it is a reactive system. A wheel must spin first. In some situations, that is enough to stop you.

LSDs work best on slippery surfaces where a bit of spin is OK and momentum tends to get used.
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Old December 1st, 2011, 09:25 PM
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Gotchya.... right after posting I figured the reactionary nature of a LSD might be the answer to my own question, but thank you for clearing it up!
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Old December 1st, 2011, 09:51 PM
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I had a detroit locker in the rear and a truetrac in the front of my 88 Range Rover.

Can't imagine needing more than that unless you are really doing a lot of rock crawling.

Thinking of doing the same for my D...
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Old December 1st, 2011, 10:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bossman429 View Post
Now, why wouldn't a limited slip differential do the exact same thing. With a limited slip, once one wheel starts turning at a drastically different rate than the other, it "locks" and acts the same as a locker doesn't it?
There are many types of Limited Slip Differentials.

The type you described is a clutch-pack diff. Yes, a clutch-pack diff will operate identically to a locked diff, but only when the rate of rotation between the two axles differs enough to increase the temperature and pressure of the diff fluid such that the clutch packs "lock" together. When you are trying to crawl up rocks at 1 mph, as you can imagine, those diffs don't heat up much. Generally what most people do is just hit the throttle until they crawl up whatever they are trying to crawl up. That may work for you, it may not, as a fast moving tire has very little traction.

The Truetrac is not a clutch pack diff. It is basically a Torsen T-1 which uses worm gears to basically "spread apart" the inside of the carrier until locking occurs when the rate of rotation between the two axles differ. The torque transfer ratio is related to internal spacing, worm gear lead angle and the number of the teeth in the internal round gears. If one wheel loses traction completely, then it is essentially an open differential.

So that's why lockers are still used.
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