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Off Road
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Bryan Flynn
Dodge Dakota
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9/06/2001
21:53:26

Subject: 4WD LOCK?
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Message:
I have a 2000 V6 4x4 Dak QC. It's all stock, I believe because I bought it used. When it is in 2wd I know that the rear doesn't have a LSD. Does dodge put a locker on the rear when you shift in 4wd lock because the rear seems to get more traction, or is it just the front wheels that are locking?



Mar
Dodge Dakota


9/06/2001
22:33:49

RE: 4WD LOCK?
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All the 4wd button or shifter will do is lock the transfer case and giving you the front wheels. You dont get any more traction out of the rear wheels just by putting it in 4wd. Dodge does make a limited slip but like i said has nothing to do with the 4wd. However when the transfer case is locked in sharp turns you may feel some wheel hop in the rear.



J. C. Brandon
Dodge Dakota
 Email

9/07/2001
11:28:55

RE: 4WD LOCK?
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Message:
When you say "it seems like the rear seems to get more traction" are you saying that the rear(s) were slipping before? By shifting into 4wd, you've told the truck to direct some of the available torque to the front axle. So less is getting to the rear wheels. So the contact patch is now able to hold on. And you keep moving.

Maximum traction is all about getting as much torque to a wheel as possible, without overcoming the limits of adhesion. You can have all the power in the world but if you can only apply it to one wheel, and that wheel starts to slip, you're stuck.

You always have a finite amount of torque available. When the road surface begins to deteriorate, you want to spread that available torque out to match the traction available at each tire. So you shift into 4wd. If you find that isn't doing the job, you look into limited slip diffs, or lockers, or other traction devices. You can also increase the contact patch at the tire by decreasing the pressure in it. Or go to bigger tires.

This is the essence of off-road driving.


-J.





RizeAbuv
Dodge Dakota
 Email

9/07/2001
17:40:08

RE: 4WD LOCK?
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I dont understand this either. My 2001 Dakota CC has a LSD but Im not sure how it works. When the truck isnt in 4wd there is no problem at all. But once you put it in 4wd it seems like the read end does lock, because one of the tires sure hops no matter what. Even on small turns. Maybe someone can help explain how it all works to me.






J. C. Brandon
Dodge Dakota
 Email

9/07/2001
18:15:37

RE: 4WD LOCK?
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Message:
By shifting into 4wd, you've mechanically locked the front and rear driveshafts together, forcing them to turn at the same speed. When you make a turn, all four wheels describe a different arc. So they all travel a different distance and must turn at a different speed. If they don't something has to give. So a tire breaks loose. The one with the least available traction. Usually in the rear, because it has less weight on it.

That's why your owners manual says not to engage a part-time 4wd system to drive on dry pavement. A strong argument for a full-time 4wd system, because it includes a center differential, allowing front and rear driveshafts to turn at different speeds.

Hope that helps.


-J.





Bryan Flynn
Dodge Dakota


9/07/2001
18:18:55

RE: 4WD LOCK?
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Message:
Thanks guys, I was just wondering if Dodge put something in the rear that electronically locked the rear diff. when you shift it into 4wd. If not then can you buy something like that aftermarket?



J. C. Brandon
Dodge Dakota
 Email

9/07/2001
18:27:39

RE: 4WD LOCK?
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Message:
There are aftermarket manually operated differentials. Best-known is the Air Locker from ARB:
http://www.arbusa.com

There is also a cable-operated locker from Ox Trax:
http://www.oxtrax.com/

I don't think either of them offers diffs for Dakotas. Yet. Ox Trax told me to expect one in early 2002.

-J.







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