The 1947 - Present Chevrolet & GMC Truck Message Board Network







Register or Log In To remove these advertisements.

Go Back   The 1947 - Present Chevrolet & GMC Truck Message Board Network > General Truck Forums > All 4x4 Tech & Off Roading

Web 67-72chevytrucks.com


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-29-2018, 02:21 AM   #1
87Skier
Registered User
 
87Skier's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Corvallis, OR
Posts: 668
Front differential locker, posi, open...?

I've been trying to pick out a new carrier for my Dana 44 front. I'm changing gears and need a new one and thought about going with a traction adder of some kind, but can't decide which one.

My truck is mostly a cruiser. It doesn't see a lot of abuse but occasionally I'll take it down a road or through crap it has no business being near. I also drive over mountain passes frequently, so I like to have it in 4wd earlier due to possible ice.

I want to avoid lockers because my wife occasionally drives my truck and I don't want to have to explain to her each time how to drive with a locker in the front.

Should I go with a posi? TrueTrac? Open carrier? Something else? What do you guys recommend?

The rear has a TrueTrac. It's got 33" tires, no plans to go bigger.
__________________
1972 GMC Jimmy Custom 4.8L (L20)/6L90E/NP205
1989 Chevy Suburban V2500 350/Turbo 400/4.11 gears
1996 Chevy Suburban K1500 350/4L60E
87Skier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2018, 07:13 AM   #2
b454rat
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Binghamton, NY
Posts: 3,005
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

If anything an ARB. Locked when you want, unlocked when you want. Don’t need it, don’t lock it. Im in the same boat as you. I have a powerlock for my 44, but after talking to some people they say leave it open. I’ve been wheeling off n on for the past 25 years, never had a truck that had any sort of traction device, and can only remember one case where it would have helped. Maybe others will have more useful info....
b454rat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2018, 07:18 AM   #3
Bigdav160
Registered User
 
Bigdav160's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Klein Texas
Posts: 3,180
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

I used an Eaton e-locker so when the conditions get gnarly all it takes is a push of a button and I am locked. Otherwise I can have good steerage with the front open.
__________________
My Classics:
'72 K20 Suburban + '65 Dodge Town Wagon
'72 Corvette Roadster +'67 Corvette Roadster
'73 Z-28 Camaro
'63 Ford SWB Uni Pickup
'50 Ford Coupe
Bigdav160 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2018, 11:05 AM   #4
jeffahart
Senior Member
 
jeffahart's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 1,385
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

I would look into putting the dollars into a winch and some tackle. A good self recovery setup might be better bucks spent. But, if you go out with friends or where there is people... just stand waving a strap, someone will pull you out. Much cheaper, no maintenance, and you make new friends!

P.S. Always throw a shovel in the bed before you go out. Most used recovery items are a rope and a shovel!

j
__________________
White K20
jeffahart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2018, 01:43 PM   #5
sweetk30
Registered User
 
sweetk30's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: horseheads,ny rust belt
Posts: 1,266
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

selectable like a ARB or eaton e-locker would be best choice for front end use .

like said above tho maybe a good name brand winch / yank strap / tree saver / pulley / d-ring .
__________________
77-k30lb BIG truck build .
87-k30lb budget beater build .
85-k30lb the plow machine build .
85-c10sb summer fun toy .
sweetk30 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2018, 02:28 PM   #6
B. W.
Senior Member
 
B. W.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Bigfork, Montana
Posts: 1,016
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

I have a Truetrac in front, can run in 4wd in winter with no ill handling.
B. W. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2018, 03:21 PM   #7
outfield
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Portland, Or
Posts: 319
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

The best differential for snowy and icy roads is an open differential. An open diff will prevent the front end from sliding sideways on a side hill, and plowing straight ahead in a turn. You will have better feel for the road and will be able to turn sharper.
An ARB or E-locker that is selectable is the second best, you have the advantages of an open diff when needed, but can lock it up when needed. I found I would rarely use my ARB front diff locked in, so my current trial rig is still open in front. (and I have a winch)
A limited slip like a Detroit True Trac would be the next best, but I found them to pull you side to side in snow ruts, and slush, a lot more then an open diff.
A true Locker will make it seam like your rig does not want to turn a corner, it will just go straight because both tires are turning at the same speed.
I would keep it as an open diff, or put an ARB in it.
Having a locker or True Track in the rear would probably be the best way to go, that's how my 69 K20 is set up... it drives great in the snow.
outfield is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2018, 07:44 PM   #8
junksaver
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chesapeake Va
Posts: 187
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by outfield View Post
The best differential for snowy and icy roads is an open differential. An open diff will prevent the front end from sliding sideways on a side hill, and plowing straight ahead in a turn. You will have better feel for the road and will be able to turn sharper.
An ARB or E-locker that is selectable is the second best, you have the advantages of an open diff when needed, but can lock it up when needed. I found I would rarely use my ARB front diff locked in, so my current trial rig is still open in front. (and I have a winch)
A limited slip like a Detroit True Trac would be the next best, but I found them to pull you side to side in snow ruts, and slush, a lot more then an open diff.
A true Locker will make it seam like your rig does not want to turn a corner, it will just go straight because both tires are turning at the same speed.
I would keep it as an open diff, or put an ARB in it.
Having a locker or True Track in the rear would probably be the best way to go, that's how my 69 K20 is set up... it drives great in the snow.
Well said. To the OP all you need is an open differential. Just get that and don't even think twice about it. You only need a locker in the front for hard core wheeling. I would venture to say 99% of people with old trucks like us don't wheel them hard enough for a front locker.
__________________
68 4wd Stepside
69 2wd Stepside Driver
69 2wd Stepside Project
71 2wd Blazer Project
72 2wd 3/4 Ton Project or Parts?
73 4wd Blazer
77 Crew Cab Dually
Lots of Jeeps and Muscle Cars
junksaver is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2018, 02:20 PM   #9
87Skier
Registered User
 
87Skier's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Corvallis, OR
Posts: 668
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

Thanks for all the help!

I can't see myself spending close to $1000 for a selectable locker and really don't feel that I would get the use out of it that it deserves. If this were more of a overlanding or a trail-rig/daily driver combo, I would probably spring for it. Looks like I'll be running open front diff.
__________________
1972 GMC Jimmy Custom 4.8L (L20)/6L90E/NP205
1989 Chevy Suburban V2500 350/Turbo 400/4.11 gears
1996 Chevy Suburban K1500 350/4L60E
87Skier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2018, 02:56 PM   #10
jeffahart
Senior Member
 
jeffahart's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 1,385
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

Take the money from your left hand and put it in your right hand, you just made money by making a wise choice! Don't spend that kind of bucks on a whim. If you were in situations where you knew you needed it... you probably wouldn't have posted it as a question, I think!


j
__________________
White K20
jeffahart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2018, 06:11 PM   #11
sweetk30
Registered User
 
sweetk30's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: horseheads,ny rust belt
Posts: 1,266
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffahart View Post
Take the money from your left hand and put it in your right hand, you just made money by making a wise choice! Don't spend that kind of bucks on a whim. If you were in situations where you knew you needed it... you probably wouldn't have posted it as a question, I think!


j
man if i had half the money from those kinds of deals . . .
__________________
77-k30lb BIG truck build .
87-k30lb budget beater build .
85-k30lb the plow machine build .
85-c10sb summer fun toy .
sweetk30 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2018, 08:00 PM   #12
jeffahart
Senior Member
 
jeffahart's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 1,385
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetk30 View Post
man if i had half the money from those kinds of deals . . .
I know right. Some of the things I've bought! I need to stop using my head as a jack stand, I think it might by affecting my good judgment!


j
__________________
White K20
jeffahart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2018, 08:33 PM   #13
Bigdav160
Registered User
 
Bigdav160's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Klein Texas
Posts: 3,180
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffahart View Post
Take the money from your left hand and put it in your right hand, you just made money by making a wise choice! Don't spend that kind of bucks on a whim. If you were in situations where you knew you needed it... you probably wouldn't have posted it as a question, I think!
j
I once stuck my DD and it took 12 hours to dig it out. Another time it took 4 hours. A winch would have done nothing. No places to tie off

I find a front locker a good investment where I drive
__________________
My Classics:
'72 K20 Suburban + '65 Dodge Town Wagon
'72 Corvette Roadster +'67 Corvette Roadster
'73 Z-28 Camaro
'63 Ford SWB Uni Pickup
'50 Ford Coupe
Bigdav160 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2018, 08:20 AM   #14
special-K
Special Order

 
special-K's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Mt.Airy,MD
Posts: 66,924
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

I love the Tru-Trac. It's still as good as it gets until you get into In & Out unit$. I'd say you are fine as it sits because the use you describe is the use the factory intended. But to go a notch further to enhance it's capabilities I'd match that front to the rear for a truly effective, simple, and economic solution that's hard to beat.
__________________
"BUILDING A BETTER WAY TO SERVE THE USA"......67/72......"The New Breed"

'67 C1500 Wideside Super Custom SWB: 327/M22/3.42 posi...'The 67' (project)
'72 K2500 Wideside Sierra Custom Camper: 350/TH350/4.10 Power-Lok...'The 72'
Tim

"Don't call me a redneck. I'm a rough cut country gentleman"

R.I.P. ~ East Side Low Life ~ El Jay ~ 72BLUZ ~ Fasteddie69 ~ Ron586
special-K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2018, 10:21 PM   #15
Short 3/4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Los Osos Ca
Posts: 243
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by special-K View Post
I love the Tru-Trac. It's still as good as it gets until you get into In & Out unit$. I'd say you are fine as it sits because the use you describe is the use the factory intended. But to go a notch further to enhance it's capabilities I'd match that front to the rear for a truly effective, simple, and economic solution that's hard to beat.
I agree 100% with K. While I love the NoSPIN in my Chevy, I have TT's front and rear in my BrandX truck and have to agree that for your use either open or TT should be good
__________________
65 short stepside K10
292-SM420-T221
8 lug closed D44 front
NoSpin HO72 rear 4.10
Short 3/4 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2018, 04:08 PM   #16
Mike C
Registered User
 
Mike C's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Posts: 6,816
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

I have a TruTrac in the front of my '52 M38A1. You don't notice it is there at from a driveability stand point, but you can tell it doesn't spin the left front front tire on uphill climbs anymore since both are pulling. I would recommend a TruTrac for the front as the others have. And for that matter, if you are buying a rear limited slip type diff I would go TruTrac there as well.

The first one I installed was in a '79 CJ7 that was a QuadraTrac vehicle. Fulltime 4x4 and the TruTrac the ONLY diff recommended for street use in that application.

On my son's 72 Jimmy project we are working on we swapped 3.73 axles from a '84 3/4 ton sub. The rear is the factory Gov-Lok and we put a used posi from a '78 TransAm in the front. This worked good for us because the Gov-Lok came with the truck and the Eaton LSD was free. Limited slips work well in the front but some of the challenges in snowy/icy conditions have been mentioned above.

I have some auto locking diffs in a couple of other front axles, and you definitely don't want one of those on the road!
__________________
44 Willys MB
52 M38A1
64 Corvette Coupe
68 Camaro 'vert LT1 & TH700
69 Z/28 355 12.6's @110
69 Chevy Short Step 4 1/2"/7" drop
72 Jimmy 4WD 4spd 4" & 35's
02 GMC 2500HD 4x4 Duramax
Mike C is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-05-2018, 12:22 AM   #17
Zoomad75
Registered User
 
Zoomad75's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Pueblo, CO
Posts: 1,314
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

I love the Tru-trac in the front of mine. I've used it on many different terrain and not had any ill handling come out of any of them. Deep snow to packed almost icy, no pulling. On dirt it's great. I've crawled over stuff I know I couldn't have made it over with an open diff.

One side note though. Since installing, I've broken a stub axle and a u-joint. This was with stock spicer shafts/u-joints. Both times I was in sand fairly deep. My suggestion if you go with any traction device upgrade your shafts and u-joints. I know I need to on mine.
__________________
Rob Z.
1975 K5 350/465/205/D44/12b 4" lift on 35's- RIP
1991 K5 5.3L/700r4/241/D44/14b Under Construction
Zoomad75 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-05-2018, 01:15 PM   #18
kwmech
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Colfax-California
Posts: 5,270
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

I'll have to agree with everyone else about the Tru-trac. I've installed dozens of them in customers vehicles and have had not 1 complaint. There are the more extreme guys that want an ARB---which is essentially an air driven spool. One big advantage of the ARB is the fact that you end up with an on board air system which comes in handy for a lot of other things.
kwmech is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-17-2018, 11:56 PM   #19
farmall
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Central OR
Posts: 323
Re: Front differential locker, posi, open...?

I rebuilt a Powr-Lok that I pulled out of an IH D60. Bought a clutch kit and side gears to match the axle spline count. Dana recommended leaving out a clutch for a front application. In snow it does great but if you hit dry pavement it is a bear to turn with power steering. It tracks straight and climbs just fine otherwise. Very little $ in it.
http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=643974
__________________
1955 GMC 250 8 Flatbed
1971 C30 157" 350 4spd PS PB White With Blue Int 10' Flatbed
81 GMC K30 CnC 9' Flatbed 454 T400
71 LT1 Convertible, 72 Coupe
69 CJ5 V6, 75 CJ6 V8
67 M715, 72 M35A2 Bobbed, 95 XLC2
farmall is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:15 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright 1997-2013 67-72chevytrucks.com