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  #1  
Old January 26th, 2014, 02:17 PM
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So Lets Talk Differential Lockers

I have always liked air lockers on my differentials. It allows me to firmly sink both rear wheels into the sand, equally. So since my new Defender is lacking any, I have been on the hunt. However, since I haven't played in the Defender parts sandbox in a while a few more lockers have entered into the market, besides the ARB one (which has gone up considerably in price). So what are your experiences with the pretenders to the throne, and who likes what?
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  #2  
Old January 26th, 2014, 02:27 PM
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Ashcroft makes an air locker as an alternate, or some folks also run Detroits/TruTracs as another option. Personally, I like to have the option/ability/input as to when they go on/off (whereas the TrueTrac/Detroits are automatically engaged). Hence, I'm still running the older RD56 ARBs.

If I were to in a position to redo, and it were me, I'd probably put in an updated RD128 ARB and be done with it. I'm not sure it's changed really all that much...same principle/concepts still apply, maybe just some slightly updated technology to make it a little bit more reliable.

Also if you're going lockers, you may want to just consider pulling your 3.54 thirds complete and installing an entire new gear set that is already setup with lockers (most folks seem to go with a 4.11 gear set, good on-road manners and good off-road performance). That way, if you wanted to sell the truck down the road it's just plug & play to get the stock gears back in. That way, you can also have an updated (stronger) set of gears put in (reverse cut/etc), lower gear ratio (better for offroad), and you can also have everything thrust bolted/pegged (keeps ring & pinion flex at a minimum, which will avoid any broken teeth/etc).
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  #3  
Old January 26th, 2014, 02:39 PM
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I've run both types for many years, and while both offer advantages I prefer the Detroit/TT as it is mechanical and 'always ready'. The ARB while excellent, have compressors, air lines, solenoids, etc all of which can and do fail. If you need lockers, you don't need the chance they won't engage.
I still carry a CO2 tank and compressor, but not for the lockers...
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Old January 26th, 2014, 03:59 PM
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Ashcroft. No air leaks.
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  #5  
Old January 26th, 2014, 04:24 PM
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The Ashcroft is a better design than the ARB.
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Old January 26th, 2014, 04:38 PM
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I see that Ashcroft makes both an Air Locker version and the ATB version. Which do you refer to?
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Old January 26th, 2014, 04:46 PM
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I just went with Ashcroft air lockers a few months ago. Wheeled them a few times. So far so good. I also read that ARB significantly enhanced their whole line of air lockers. They're quite a bit more $$ then the Ashcrofts though.
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Old January 26th, 2014, 05:27 PM
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Had ARB's in my past life with my CJ-7 (Also had a cable actuated OX locker in my TJ, not an option for Rovers) but have a Detroit/TT combo in my Disco now, which were already in it. They both have their advantages but if I had the budget and plan to do this from scratch I'd always go selectable. Yes there are more parts to fail, but you really have the best of both worlds regarding on-road and off-road manners. Also I agree with Lav in his post earlier, if you're pulling the gears anyway now is the time to decide if you want to go to a lower ratio.

Ashcroft vs ARB, I'm not the right person to ask.
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  #9  
Old January 26th, 2014, 05:30 PM
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I've run ARB RD56 lockers front and rear since 2003.
I bought them secondhand from a guy on Pirate4x4; taking them out of his 90.
I've had one small air leak in 10 years (which was fixed in less than 5 minutes).
I grenaded a front 4.11 ring/pinion gear; ARB was just fine.
I just recently bought a second set of secondhand ARBs.
If I were building/buying new I would do as Jason said above and get the slipper pad/diff pegged.

I also know people running the Ashcrofts and say they are quite good.
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Old January 26th, 2014, 05:33 PM
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I'm running 4.7s, so may not be the most "sane" person to ask...but figured recommending 4.11s may be a safe bet.
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  #11  
Old January 26th, 2014, 05:43 PM
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While there are lots of opinions, I do rather like the ATB version. While not as sure footed off the road, I live in, well normally, a high snow area, and not having totally locked rear ends is not a bad thing. Hard to pick. The concept of a LSD in a Defender is news to me. Nobody had them in Africa, where it was ARB or nothing (usually nothing). What experiences have folks had with them? Swapping gears is not a bad idea at this time. If my off road gets too difficult I tend to walk, I an use the exercise. I don't like getting stuck and don't get paid extra for the time spent getting out (I am a geologist, who uses aircraft for remote sensing).
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Old January 26th, 2014, 06:00 PM
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IMO, if you live in a snow area ARB's or similar selectable locker are the direction you should go.

The Detroit/TT combo can be a handful in snow if you're not a very capable offroader.
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  #13  
Old January 26th, 2014, 06:06 PM
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Truth in that, what we get is real changeable conditions from one side of the mountain to the other. snow/ice-wet-snow/ice. Actually really good tires, like Nokian Haka's work the best. You get spoiled really fast by the Range Rover's ETS snow setting combined with Nokians. Going back to manual you control traction again brings back such happy memories of Alaska, watching folks whizzing through intersections, sideways, after the first snow of the season. That and getting the government furnished trucks to move at all in Deadhorse.
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  #14  
Old January 26th, 2014, 06:09 PM
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I like my ashcroft air lockers quite a bit.
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Old January 26th, 2014, 06:36 PM
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Instead of buying a second ARB I sold my RD56 and bought two Ashcrofts. They are a better design than even the RD128, IMO. I also swapped in Ashcroft 4.12 gears that I bought on this forum. No sense in doing all that and bot doing axles so I got the new Tibus HD front axles/CV's from Lucky8 and I already had RoverTracks rear.

Anyways, the Ashcrofts were easy to set up and a very good design, almost zero chance for leakage inside the diff.
They've been awesome offroad. I love that they're selectable. I try obstacles unlocked and then only lock as needed. I run pneumatic switches to eliminate the electrical aspect to the lockers.


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Old January 26th, 2014, 06:38 PM
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I've never heard of 4.11s being described as "stronger" than 3.54s but I'm not a metallurgist.

Lots of love for the Aschroft locker here but little in the way of technical info about why they're better.

I've always run the DL/TT combo and it did very well for me in on my "overland" trips. It never failed me on more wheeling-oriented trips like SCARR, either.

I did get a lot of slop in my driveline from the DL and that's probably my number one reason for considering air lockers for the 110. You really should think about the realistic use cases for your truck when deciding on driveline upgrades. There was almost nothing I drove in Utah/Nevada/Idaho that couldn't be handled with careful driving and my center diff lock. Sure, you wouldn't drive Moab Rim on this setup but we wouldn't anyway. For me, I need good road manners and reliability. Besides the Ashcrofts or leaving the diffs unlocked, I'm also considering TT front and rear on this truck.
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Old January 26th, 2014, 06:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris snell View Post
I've never heard of 4.11s being described as "stronger" than 3.54s but I'm not a metallurgist.
It's a basic size discussion. 3.54s have 46 teeth. Typical 4.11s have 37 or so teeth. Bigger teeth = stronger gears (in simplistic terms, thicker metal is stronger).
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Old January 26th, 2014, 07:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishEH View Post
I run pneumatic switches to eliminate the electrical aspect to the lockers.
I was just reading up on these, yes your eliminating the possibility of a switch failure but your still relying on a electric pump right? I guess you could have an on board air tank so no electrics needed but still you get my point. Just seems easier to carry a spare switch. Not dissing your setup just saying what I decided.
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Old January 26th, 2014, 09:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myoverlandrover View Post
I was just reading up on these, yes your eliminating the possibility of a switch failure but your still relying on a electric pump right? I guess you could have an on board air tank so no electrics needed but still you get my point. Just seems easier to carry a spare switch. Not dissing your setup just saying what I decided.
Yes, my compressor is still electric. But the electric solenoids are a weak spot for sure and I've just eliminated two.

In regards to gearing, not only are the teeth stronger but the front is reverse cut so it drives on the proper side of the gear instead of the wrong side like the stock 3.54 does.

The Ashcroft locker eliminates failure points like the shitty air collar on the ARB. There is also more engagement, 6mm. And the cage is steel.
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Old January 26th, 2014, 11:04 PM
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Originally Posted by fishEH View Post
Yes, my compressor is still electric. But the electric solenoids are a weak spot for sure and I've just eliminated two.

In regards to gearing, not only are the teeth stronger but the front is reverse cut so it drives on the proper side of the gear instead of the wrong side like the stock 3.54 does.

The Ashcroft locker eliminates failure points like the shitty air collar on the ARB. There is also more engagement, 6mm. And the cage is steel.
That's good info.

I think that the risk of solenoid failure in a situation where you absolutely need your lockers (and where winch or recovery straps are not options) is very small and a risk that I can accept.
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