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Thread: Rear Locker for JK Unlimited

  1. #1
    Member michdave's Avatar
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    Default Rear Locker for JK Unlimited

    Hey Guys,

    Here's where I stand. 2008 Jeep JK Unlimited (the 4 door), and I'm getting ready to re-gear to 5.13's and I have a Pro Rock front axle that's getting thrown in, that has a factory Rubicon E-Locker installed. If I'm going to open the rear to re-gear it, I would like to put a locker in it while it's open, something that's better than the factory Limited Slip.

    I'm really thinking about doing an automatic locker, like the Detroit. I've read up on them, but I'm still a bit confused about the difference between a "Detroit Locker" and a "Detroit Softlocker". Is anyone running either of these? and how are their road manners? I put over 30k on the Jeep this year, so it see's the streets alot.

    I've been debating a selectable locker, but the ARB's are so expensive by time you buy a locker, stainless lines, and a compressor. I had an Auburn ECTED e-lockers in the front of my TJ, and I hated it. It would never disengage correctly. And I've been reading some reviews on the Eaton E-locker and have heard the same complaints. That's why I'm thinking about doing an auto locker, plus price alone! Any input is appreciated. Thanks
    2008 JK Unlimited~ 4" Teraflex lift, 35" BFG KM2's, Dynatrac ProRock 44 e-locked, 5.13's, JKS QD's, JKS F&R Trackbars, MM 9500 winch, Rockhard 4x4 Full Skid System, AEV snorkel, SS brakelines,...and it goes on, and on, and on,..

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    Member Marinedawg's Avatar
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    Why not look into the OX Lockers. I love mine. With the amount of miles you put on it I would go selectable.

    This was pulled from yota tech:

    THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE IN STRENGTH OR TRACTION BETWEEN A SOFT LOCKER AND A STANDARD DETROIT LOCKER.

    They are virually identical with the exception of the force required to unlock them in a turn. It operates slightly differently, but is still a true locker, not a limited slip in any sense of the term.
    '04 TJ Sport
    Bunch of stuff stuck to it from Auto Zone.


    '07 Dodge CTD QCSB
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  3. #3
    Member michdave's Avatar
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    First off,..Your avatar is awesome. haha

    So your happy with your OX? I've heard a few horror stories about them and the cable constantly needing adjustment. I'll do a little more research, I'm not sure iff they offer one for the JK's yet. But, I agree with you on getting a selectable with the miles I drive. My brother is just trying to talk me out of it. haha
    2008 JK Unlimited~ 4" Teraflex lift, 35" BFG KM2's, Dynatrac ProRock 44 e-locked, 5.13's, JKS QD's, JKS F&R Trackbars, MM 9500 winch, Rockhard 4x4 Full Skid System, AEV snorkel, SS brakelines,...and it goes on, and on, and on,..

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    Senior Member SavageSun4x4's Avatar
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    Ok Marine, don't get butt hurt here on what I am about to say: OX lockers. First the good. I like them, great design, strong as an ox and there is certainly a place for them. Now the bad news. Let me put this in military terms. The logistics tail! Friend of mine has one. Something broke, 4 months waiting on a part that was covered under warranty. It broke while in Moab the center of the Jeeping world. You think ANYONE or ANY SHOP had the part (which he was willing to pay for), nope! Ask any dealer if they stock spare parts, they don't. Its just a question of logistics. IF you do not need the logistic support, meaning you wheel in your backyard, fine get one.

    My recommendation* is ARB. Why? See above, 'logistic support'. ARB has a global footprint and parts are available world wide.

    * Before someone thinks 'well all shops recommend what they sell'. NO I do not. I do not sell parts or stock parts. If I do order your parts ALL parts are at MY COST, I make no profit on parts.

    MichDave: Pro Rock**? Are you saying PR in the front or rear? I just did a JK PR install on the front. I know several JK owners who have snapped passenger side OEM Rubicon axle tubes on their JK's. What my client did was have me pick him up a JK PR front axle sans the guts and install his guts into it. I really recommend that upgrade. [I have a good writeup and lots of pix over on my forum of this build] Warranty will not cover snapped axle tubes in spite of Jeep knowing they are weak.

    ** I have run Pro Rocks in my rigs since they came out, they are the best IMO, I know the owner of the company well and my Jeep is featured in their catalog and has been for several years. I buy direct from them they are a great outfit and all there stuff is made in the USA. When you order up your PR I would suggest you get the HEAVY DUTY Bullet Proof ball joints, not cheap, but well worth it.
    Don

    '15 Jeep Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock...OLD SCHOOL 6 Spd Manual Trans
    17 Oaks Ranch Companies LLC

    www.savagesun4x4.com

  5. #5
    G.I. Grandpa SGM O's Avatar
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    SavageSun makes some great points...when I bent the axle tube on my rear OEM Dana 44 the shop here in COS, Predator 4x4 recommend going with a TeraFlex CRD50 housing and swap in all the parts from my OEM Dana 44, to include my ARB and all I had to buy was the reverse cut R&P...

    As for lockers, with you putting 30K on the clock every year I can't recommend anything other than an ARB. As for service, ARB USA is located near Seattle, WA. I got stuck having my Jeep worked on at a non-four wheel drive friendly shop a while back and not only did ARB ship the parts directly to them, their technical guys talked them through the re-install process, and this was a non-ARB bearing issue, but they had to pull the ARB out to replace the bearings and had damaged the o-rings in the process.

    As for stainless steel lines, yes you can use them, but I run the blue plastic lines and have never had an issue and it is easy to carry some as a spare if you think your type of wheeling will damage them.

    Lastly, you are regearing to 5.13's, what size tires are you running? With a locker up front and a limited slip in the back you are in pretty good shape, I would be more worried about running 39"+ rubber on the stock rear axle and small Dana 44 ring and pinion with a 5.13:1 ratio.

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    Squeal Like a Pig Ross's Avatar
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    I say go ARBs. I have had mine for almost 10 years, very happy with them.
    "If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time."
    Zig Ziglar

  7. #7
    Senior Member SavageSun4x4's Avatar
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    Thanks SGM...

    I installed my ARB/Pro Rocks about 6 years ago and I have never had any issue with the AC, lines the the ARB's f/r working properly with the exception of a dash switch went out about a year ago. Its a common switch and $12 bucks later that was fixed. That said I have seen a lot of issues out there with folks who run ARB's and with out exception be it on the trail on in the questions I get regularly about them I find out the SAME INFO time after time. The ARB was NOT installed correctly, failure to read the instructions, cutting the blue line too short and not giving consideration to ARTICULATION (pulling and stretching) and the failure to use enough and inspect the nylon ties. This leads to wear/pinch spots on the lines. I think you would be wasting your money using SS lines.

    My recommendation: Do it RIGHT the FIRST time.

    If you are doing your FRONT and the Pro Rock has the OEM locker I would leave it in there if I could. It won't handle 39's for long so if you plan on running 37's or larger then I would go ARB(s) f/r for sure.

    If its 39 inch shoes and you are knocking down 30k miles a year you are keeping the D44 format then I would do 1 of 2 things: 1) Run your stuff till it breaks and step WAY up when your replace the broke, 2) pull your guts now, step way up and keep you old stuff for spares. With 39's you are going to need to go to 35 spline inner/outer CHROMO axles and the big outer u joints*. You will also need a hardened R&P I think you can get those from Superior Axle (NOTE they are made in the USA, the rest are made in China, India and other assorted countries). I would also ADD a set of Warn front hubs so you can run unlocked axles most of the time and save the wear and tear on your axle/driveshaft setup.

    * U joints: Save your ducats and skip the ABC and XYZ brands made out of Unobtainium and other metals. You lack the HP/Torque to snap Spicer HD stuff to begin with, even with 39's. PROPERLY maintained u joints in Auto rigs RARELY fail. Lets see here, Supercharged 4.0L pushing 300 HP/Torque, 37 MTRs/KM2 for 80k miles, 12 trips to Moab, I will HARD and I have NEVER had a u joint fail on me ANYWHERE in my drive line and they are ALL OEM Spicers. And I have a STICK tranny.

    TIP: U joints can fail just due to wear and catastrophic failure. Wear is just that, normal wear and tear. ACCELRATED wear which leads to catastrophic failure is due to lack of maintenance and or FAILURE to see the signs of impending failure. U joints will transmit visually and verbally they are gonna lay down on you. Wanna see what it looks like? pix here: http://www.savagesun4x4.com/enter/fa...l_rubicon.html

    INSPECT your rig before and after every run. Using any El Cheapo spray paint, paint all of your u joints (I do it about once a month). Now just replace the u joints BEFORE they fail on you.

    Catastrophic U joint failure: This typically occurs again due to excessive wear which allows the trunnion to become loose inside the bearings in the caps. Its the looseness that causes the caps to rotate** and expose the fresh metal as shown in the pix in the link above. As it gets looser it will begin to verbalize making a sound like a chirping bird as you drive. In this time frame, those with a clutch based trans can bring about a catastrophic failure due to high impact of the trunnion inside the bearing cap. The few 100ths of an inch in wear can initiate a sudden shock and SNAP there it goes.

    Failure to to properly grease by FLUSHING old grease out and or failure to grease leads to accelerated wear. THINK: Preventive Maintenance.

    For those of you who do not live in the desert like I do I recommend "Green Grease" its some of the best on the market. Here in the desert I recommend any rated auto grease and grease OFTEN, we deal with sand down here and you have to flush the old grease out.

    ** Some believe the caps rotating are the problem, BONK wrong answer, they are not the problem, they are a RESULT of lack of maintenance which causes wear and the wear makes them loose and this in turn causes the caps to rotate. If they are rotating then its too late and NO putting a tack weld on them will not help, in fact it only hurts.

    Yes, many have the zero maintenance (no zerk fitting, usually OEM) u joints. No, nothing you can do other than as they fail replace with grease-able ones.
    Don

    '15 Jeep Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock...OLD SCHOOL 6 Spd Manual Trans
    17 Oaks Ranch Companies LLC

    www.savagesun4x4.com

  8. #8
    Member michdave's Avatar
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    I don't know why, but my last post, isn't showing up. Anyways,..

    Thanks SGM and SavageSun. That painting idea is a great idea!

    As far as my Pro Rock for the front. It's the Pro Rock 44, built by Dynatrac and I had them install new Rubicon shafts and E-Locker (OEM factory parts). It is geared at 5.13's. I only plan on running 35's. I may end up going to 37's, but shying away from it. I just don't think with all the driving I do that the 37's are that great of an idea, and that engine will just be working to hard. The only reason I'm thinking about the bigger tires is because my break-over angle sucks because of the long wheel base. So, I think I'm going to end up running 35's, and replace my 3 inch lift with a 4 inch lift to get my belly a little higher.

    Savage, can you PM me a price on a ARB and an compressor?
    2008 JK Unlimited~ 4" Teraflex lift, 35" BFG KM2's, Dynatrac ProRock 44 e-locked, 5.13's, JKS QD's, JKS F&R Trackbars, MM 9500 winch, Rockhard 4x4 Full Skid System, AEV snorkel, SS brakelines,...and it goes on, and on, and on,..

  9. #9
    Senior Member SavageSun4x4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by michdave View Post
    I don't know why, but my last post, isn't showing up. Anyways,..

    Thanks SGM and SavageSun. That painting idea is a great idea!

    As far as my Pro Rock for the front. It's the Pro Rock 44, built by Dynatrac and I had them install new Rubicon shafts and E-Locker (OEM factory parts). It is geared at 5.13's. I only plan on running 35's. I may end up going to 37's, but shying away from it. I just don't think with all the driving I do that the 37's are that great of an idea, and that engine will just be working to hard. The only reason I'm thinking about the bigger tires is because my break-over angle sucks because of the long wheel base. So, I think I'm going to end up running 35's, and replace my 3 inch lift with a 4 inch lift to get my belly a little higher.

    Savage, can you PM me a price on a ARB and an compressor?
    MichDave. It did read a bit like there was some info missing.

    OK, I just did that swap a couple of weeks ago on a JK. It does sound as if you have already had all the work done. If so then great. If you plan on doing the work and install yourself then you might want to read thru this thread on doing it and a few other mods at the same time. I would recommend the Teraflex frame brace be installed before you install the new Dynatrac. I am a Dyantrac dealer and have always had them install the ARB's when they built up the alxes I ordered.

    If after you get the axle installed and some stuff does not work properly such as the front locker etc I have fixes for that in the above thread. While there you should inspect some of the parts also. If you are doing a high steer check out the pix. I think you have to join up to see the pix, its free, so be my guest. There are about 60 or so posts and a LOT of pix. I will help you out anyway I can and if we need to talk I will give you my #. You can post there or here, don't care.

    http://www.savagesun4x4expeditions.c...ead.php?t=2101

    Of note my client went with the 5:13s and he is quite happy with them. He runs 37 KM2's
    Don

    '15 Jeep Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock...OLD SCHOOL 6 Spd Manual Trans
    17 Oaks Ranch Companies LLC

    www.savagesun4x4.com

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    Member michdave's Avatar
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    umm,... I registered, was looking at the first page, and when I went to the second, I got this,..

    "
    You have been banned for the following reason:
    No reason was specified.
    Date the ban will be lifted: Never"

    any ideas? It won't let me on anything at all. The site must have cached my log in.
    2008 JK Unlimited~ 4" Teraflex lift, 35" BFG KM2's, Dynatrac ProRock 44 e-locked, 5.13's, JKS QD's, JKS F&R Trackbars, MM 9500 winch, Rockhard 4x4 Full Skid System, AEV snorkel, SS brakelines,...and it goes on, and on, and on,..

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