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  #1  
Old 12 Nov 2007
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Detroit Locker vs Air lockers

Hi All

Just thought I would post this for anyone who might be thinking of getting a diff lock for their fourby.

NoSpin automatic locking differentials

I am getting a 'No Spin' fitted this week.

I was going to have an ARB air locker fitted, but there to many potential points of failure in the system, ie airlines, compressor etc.
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Old 12 Nov 2007
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Like you say, the no spin is "fit and forget", there's no outside involvement required to use it.


I've got ARB's in my 90 (and soon to be 110) and they've only given me trouble twice in the last 10 or so years of owning them. i broke one pipe off when i went over a branch (it took out the metal brake pipe as well, so i can't blame the "weak" plastic pipe for that) and i had an end cap crack inside the diff. it never made any difference in the use of the differential, it only came to light when i stripped it down to put new main bearings in (main bearings that could fail on any differential, they're all the same)

good thing about the ARB is you get a compressor that you could use for tyre inflating...at a push.
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Old 12 Nov 2007
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Don't get me wrong, I am still a big fan of the air locker, however things just seems so much simpler with the Detroit. It hopefully means that their is one less thing to break. Like you say, fit and forget. The other good thing is that you don't even have to think ...mmmm...is it time to use the locker....if its needed, it will get used.

I'm not that clued up on the technical side of things, but there is a bloke here in Oz who have used then for about 20 years without any failure. He is a tour guide/expedition leader in Oz.

I will give my verdict after I've tested it out a bit.
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Old 12 Nov 2007
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Yes vote

I had one on my Defender obviously on the rear, and it was a fantastc bit of kit! Traction benefits are massive and you don't have to worry about flicking switches before powering through difficult terrain. Also IMHO the lack of electric/pneumatic systems is a definate plus. They are also fitted to CAT 528 log skidders, and I heve never seen one break even in the most arduous conditions/operation possible.

If I can source one my troopy will get one for sure (the no-spins cousin: geared limited slip "trutrac" diff on the front is also bloody good)

I would recommend any time,

Gil
BTW anyone know a european retailer of detroit diffs for TLC 78? Roman / Julian ? UK seems to be only defenders not surprisingly...

Last edited by gilghana1; 12 Nov 2007 at 23:08. Reason: Forgot this...
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Old 13 Nov 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pumbaa View Post
Don't get me wrong, I am still a big fan of the air locker, however things just seems so much simpler with the Detroit. It hopefully means that their is one less thing to break. Like you say, fit and forget. The other good thing is that you don't even have to think ...mmmm...is it time to use the locker....if its needed, it will get used.

I'm not that clued up on the technical side of things, but there is a bloke here in Oz who have used then for about 20 years without any failure. He is a tour guide/expedition leader in Oz.

I will give my verdict after I've tested it out a bit.

Unless you drive on ice and very slippery snow, there is no comparison.
Detroit Lockers of many times have been used in the States for many, many years, and with a reliability record that far exceeds any other type of axle locking devices.

This is an absolute no-brainer.

Let me add that a front Detroit can also be a good thing, and be almost scary where it allows you to go...into more trouble, of course.
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Old 13 Nov 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gilghana1 View Post
Gil
BTW anyone know a european retailer of detroit diffs for TLC 78? Roman / Julian ? UK seems to be only defenders not surprisingly...
I can always try and find out from the importer in Oz if they know of a supplier in Europe, or can post one to you...(not sure what thta would cost)
FYI -if you are interested, I've got a 2000 model 78 series Troopy. I'm paying AU$1,400 for the No-Spin (this is the same as the Detroit, but without the housing I believe beasue they build it into the diff) and this includes fitting and a complete overhaul of the rest of the diff, ie replacing bearing etc etc.
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Old 16 Nov 2007
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Have used both ARB Air Locker & Detroit

These lockers were fitted to a couple of Cruisers that I have owned over the years
Airlocker
Pro's Lock it only when you want to, can be unlocked to turn corners if fitted to the front axle
Air compressor can be used for tyre inflation etc

Con's Air lines can be susceptable to damage (Never had a problem myself)
Some of the earlier ones would detonate if load was taken off the axles then max load was supplied. This normally only happens when the car is jumped while full throttle is applied. They were rare cases and I believe these components have been strengthened


Detroit Locker
Pro's Fit and forget, never have to touch them
Cheap

Con's Can be noisy in operation, engage and disengage
Must go into corners with a trailing throttle or the axles remain locked and the inside wheel spins up.

To sum it up I would now only buy the Air Locker mainly because it is the most user friendly locker on the market. Costs more but well worth it. I would only buy the Detroit Locker if the vehicle spent over 90% of it's time in the dirt.

Everybody has their own opinion. Hope this helps. Glen
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Old 16 Nov 2007
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Detroit Lockers are often maligned regarding use on icy roads. Throttle oversteer is only a problem if in 2WD. In 4WD it is not a problem. I have much personal experience in this regard; I have a Detroit in the rear of my BJ40 and Lockrights at both ends of my Dodge M37, here in Anchorage, Alaska.
I strongly recommend the Detroit for the rear of any 4X4 intended for real offroad use, including a fulltime AWD vehicle. My favorite setup is Detroit rear/ARB front.

Charlie
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Old 17 Nov 2007
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Hi,

Quote:
Originally Posted by gilghana1 View Post
BTW anyone know a european retailer of detroit diffs for TLC 78? Roman / Julian ? UK seems to be only defenders not surprisingly...
Very unlikely to find anything in the UK, France would be a good bet - I could ask Denis/Lio on the ELCO list if they can source one.

Failing that look at the US - with the dollar where it is at the moment they would be reasonably cheap, although I don't think they got the 78s over there.
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Old 17 Nov 2007
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The part # for the full floating Landcruiser Detroit Locker is 225SL124A. I have obtained this in the US.

Charlie
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  #11  
Old 21 Nov 2007
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Thanks for the replies and the offer to post one out to me! I will try in the future to chase one down in the good old US of A as we get quite a lot of stuff shipped from US to Ghana work related, so I can probably get our supplier to buy one for me. I once got an item posted from Oz and it went 'missing' in the post office in Ghana..... I am sure you will enjoy the benefits once it is fitted!

Gil
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