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School me on LSDs or Locking diffs

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wfopete View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wfopete Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: School me on LSDs or Locking diffs
    Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 7:10pm
I have a stock CJ2A and I'm considering a getting a locker or limited slip system for the rear axle.  The other day I was climbing a steep hill covered with leaves/pine straw and the base was wet clay.  Of course only one front and one rear wheel was getting power.  I made it up but it was a a struggle.  I just want power to both rear wheels in mud/sand.  Not looking to climb giant boulders or mess with rock crawling.  I want to just go with the rear as I understand a front diff system can screw with steering and such. 

I understand that there are some downsides to LSDs; what are they in the little CJ2as?

Suggestions? 

Or I could just get a winch?


Edited by wfopete - 13 Jan. 2022 at 7:17pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 7:21pm
If your CJ-2A has the stock Dana 41 rear axle your options will be very limited. Other will know better whats available.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote otto Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 7:26pm
I put a Lockrite in the rear axle of my jeep and it was transformative!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SE Kansas 46 CJ-2A Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 7:30pm
One downside could be sideways handling on ice. Snow and mud wouldn't have that sideways movement that can be a problem on ice. I don't know how much ice you get in NW Arkansas but if it is like SE Kansas there is usually some every year. Of course, if you don't venture out in your Jeep much in the winter it wouldn't be an issue.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 3A Steve Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 7:40pm
I see no down side to lock rights other than paying for them. Of course I don't drive on ice. I do drive on rocks, mud, and sand. Go ahead and get them, rear and front. Makes a huge improvement. You will never want to go back.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bight Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 7:51pm
schools in session 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. see links below. enjoy.

and, yes a good quality winch may be the answer but Metcalf really got me thinking about a locker up front not in the back.

oh, and tires do matter. i went to tractor tires (understanding most would not choose this option) and man oh man she moves better through mud and slick stuff.

https://www.thecj2apage.com/forums/locker-questions_topic50290.html


additionally as Metcalf wrote:

here some older posts: 
https://www.thecj2apage.com/forums/rear-end-gearing_topic29657_page1.html

https://www.thecj2apage.com/forums/dana-25-locker_topic41199.html

https://www.thecj2apage.com/forums/locker-10-and-19-spline-dana-44_topic48753_post495070.html?KW=front+locker#495070


Edited by bight - 13 Jan. 2022 at 8:04pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nothing Special Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 8:03pm
The good thing about limited slips and lockers is that they will spin both tires.  The bad thing is that they will spin both tires.  A non-spinning tire is a lot more resistant to sliding sideways, so an open diff will tend to keep you going where you're pointing while a limited slip or locker can spin out a lot easier.

Personally I'm not a fan of most limited slips.  The ones I've had are typically kind of worn out so they don't help very much.  But they've still been too tight in that they've tended to scuff the back tires in turns on snow or ice.  That can make you fishtail even when coasting around a corner.  If you aren't driving on snow or ice a fairly tight limited slip might not be too bad.  But for my money I wouldn't go that route.

Automatic lockers (like the LockRight that was mentioned) start lots of internet fights!  There are people who love them and people who hate them.  Both are right, and I don't know where you will fall.  I've had automatic lockers in the rear of a CJ5 and my Bronco, as well as an F-150.  They can be a bit of a handful because they lock up pretty abruptly which can suddenly kick the rear end out.  But if you understand how they work and drive accordingly they are pretty predictable.

Selectable lockers might be the best of both worlds.  Or they might not.  And TrueTracs and other gear-type limited slips have a lot going for them.  But since you aren't likely to find those for a stock flattie axle I won't spend any more time on them here.

Another question is which axle to put it in.  Conventional wisdom is to go with the rear axle first.  That's what I've done, and if you do any highway driving in 4WD (like on snow) I'd strongly suggest only upgrading the rear.  But if that's not a factor it might be better to upgrade the front first.  Either a limited slip or a locker in front will make it harder to steer, particularly if you don't have power steering.  But in many situations it will help more than having the same diff upgrade in the rear.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote windyhill Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 8:14pm
I have a stock 2A with a lock right in the rear.  It does help with traction quite a bit.  In the ice and snow the rear kicks out, (I'm used to it)   It also bangs and the rear "side steps" a bit when it kicks in. It feels strange but I've learned to live with it.  I have a 3b with a bigger motor and wider tires, and open diff's I can drive that all over the place.  I will never put a locker in the front of vehicle again unless it's selectable!  I have one in my work truck now and it plows in the corners (goes straight  when the road curves.)  A PITA.   I will say the traction is amazing in a straight line though.   
We also have a early CJ5 with factory power-loc's front and rear.  That gets good traction but doesn't bang in the same way.  Those power-locs are nice little units, and can be setup to grab pretty hard if needed.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wfopete Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 8:24pm
I don't get any snow to speak of and ice?  Hell for ICE I'll zip some sheet metal screws in the military tires but we only get real ice once every 10 years. I'm about 3 hours from Noel, MO so that may be a fun trip.  Good feedback guys thanks for the cheat sheets!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote oldtime Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Jan. 2022 at 8:44pm
Just my thing but the last 12 axles (front and rear) that I built were genuine Dana Spicer Powr Loks. All were setup with standard friction disk placement which is dependent on the axle model.
But of course the Powr Lok is invalid for a Dana 41.


Edited by oldtime - 13 Jan. 2022 at 8:49pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rick G Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Jan. 2022 at 1:13am
If you wheel anywhere between 67°W & 94°W longitude, then LSDs or powerlocks will work great.  Wheeling anywhere west of 94°W longitude, I highly recommend an actual locker.Thumbs Up
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wfopete Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Jan. 2022 at 6:04am
Well I spent a few hours going over threads on the positives and negatives on the subject.  Seems like the locker/LSD world has been in a life long struggle with the physics and evils of true 4WD  LOL   Now I know why AWD is so popular in todays "Suburban" world.   I have a 2020 Ford AWD Transit that does a pretty good job of keeping the beast out of trouble but I also don't go looking for trouble.  Seems the debate as to which axle get the most benefit from a locker is still as healthy as ever. With my 2A I will play in the off road world but I try to stay within it's limitations.  A locker gives me a second chance if I misbehave.  Kind of like why I bought a skid plate for it, I don't go out looking for stuff where I need a skid plate but every once and a while I find it and it's nice to know the skid plate is there. 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote oldtime Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Jan. 2022 at 7:58am
Powr Loks are, and will always be the supreme choice up to a point.

On a half kidding and half serious note I would say that if your more into “ROCK RASH” and “TRIPLE SKID PLATES” then you can certainly do better a than Powr Lok.

They are the ultimate middle ground between open and fully locked. Whether you use your jeep for interstate transport or on the Rubicon they are fully dependable and smooth.

Powr Loks produce mild steering issues compared to open and may fail on you when fully locked differentials keep on turning no matter what.




Edited by oldtime - 14 Jan. 2022 at 8:08am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cpt logger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Jan. 2022 at 12:02am
Having grown up in the 70s, I always knew that LSD would give you a psychedelic trip! I never knew you needed a Jeep for it to work though. LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Oldpappy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Jan. 2022 at 1:13pm
I was a teenager in the 70s but I never tried LSD on purpose.

All seriousness aside, I have the Powr Lok differential in my CJ5 which is a low mileage Jeep so the unit is in good shape. 

The Cj5 will go places in 2WD that I have to put my CJ2A into 4WD to go. I like it very well for getting around the hills and rough areas of my farm which involves a lot of loose dirt and leaves. I have noticed it will fish tail a little when going up hill in loose gravel if I hit the pedal a little too much, but I haven't driven it on ice.

I like it so much I plan to install one of the M38A1 Marine surplus rear axles I have under my CJ2A. 

I lucked up a few years ago and bought two sets of surplus axles, which turned out to have the Powr Loc differentials in the rear axles.  




Edited by Oldpappy - 15 Jan. 2022 at 1:22pm
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