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Auto Locking Hubs ... got one?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by backlash, Apr 17, 2001.

  1. backlash

    backlash 1/2 ton status

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    Have had some good luck with stock locking hubs. Until now ...

    Anyone have one to give away or sell cheap? Would prefer to keep my truck stock, but will go to manual if need be.

    Thanks
     
  2. rocko

    rocko 1/2 ton status

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    Two words :
    GO MANUAL !!!!

    Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it. <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.rocko.coloradok5.com>http://www.rocko.coloradok5.com</A>
     
  3. backlash

    backlash 1/2 ton status

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    Hey Rock,

    That 4 HI on the fly has saved my butt many times.

    As has been established a long time ago ... I'm lazy! Now that it has been restablished, once again ... and I know there are many threads on this ... BUT, there are a lot out there and many opinions about whose are best.

    What's yours?

    PS Is Katie Behaving herself?
     
  4. OFFRDK5

    OFFRDK5 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    I got 2 of em....name yer price....


    SK-15
    J**P...it's whats for dinner!
    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://SK-15.coloradok5.com>http://SK-15.coloradok5.com</A>
    Roads? Where we're going, we don't need any roads!
     
  5. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Curious about the "shift on the fly" of these hubs. Is there any reason that you couldn't shift while moving even with manual hubs? Is the "shift on the fly" more a feature of the T-case than the hubs? Of course you would need to lock the hubs in first, but if you are driving around in say, inclement weather, just leave the hubs locked in and the shifter in 2hi.

    If you want to keep it stock, get some older Spicer half ton hubs, (they are stock GM pieces!) and keep the auto's for looks. Because they suck. I always said "why do people say they suck" Or at least I did until I was stuck in a creek crossing in 2wd.

    Dorian
    My K5 and Chev/Olds tech/links page: <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html>http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html</A>
     
  6. rocko

    rocko 1/2 ton status

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    I'm using the Superwinch all metal hubs... Love em... front end steers alot better on road when unlocked.. or "free" and when I know I'm headed off road.. nothing saying I can lock em.. so they are always ready..
    If I understand correctly, w/ the auto's you have to roll a certain distance forward til they lock... w/ the manuals, if you have them in the locked postion, just slam it into 4hi or 4 lo and no waiting...
    Anyone else have any input on this?

    Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it. <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.rocko.coloradok5.com>http://www.rocko.coloradok5.com</A>
     
  7. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Yep, the autos need to be rolled forward to "lock in" if they ever do...typically for me, even after a thorough inspection and cleaning, the lock in would come as the rear wheels spun at 2000 RPM, waiting for the fronts to stop clicking, and actually engage. Kinda surprised the front diff or t-case didn't come apart after two of those happenings.

    Since I didn't have manual hubs in the truck with the 208, I'm curious to know if the shift on the fly is related to the t-case or the hubs..my bet is t-case, so manual hubs locked would still give you the shift on the fly that auto hubs were supposed to be so nice for.

    Dorian
    My K5 and Chev/Olds tech/links page: <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html>http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html</A>
     
  8. backlash

    backlash 1/2 ton status

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    I guess once again you guys have earned your keep!

    Some time ago I asked why switch, the reason, I recall was that manuals were stronger for rock crawling. Never thought you could drive with them locked and the transfer case free wheel.

    Lets say you are on hard top get out to lock hubs and drive off road then approach hard top again( But plan to go off road again). Do you just shift out of 4 wheel, back up, or place her in neutral to get the transfer case to unluck. Or do you have to get out and unlock the hubs?

    Sorry, thought this was a simple get out, lock them in, get out and unlock.

    Thanks
     
  9. lowlevell

    lowlevell 1/2 ton status

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    I too switched from auto to manual (superwinch) $60. I noticed an instant gain in hp and steering. I know i kept my factory auto locking hubs, but i dont know where they are at the moment. (and wont be able to look for them until this weekend). Later....

    One From None
     
  10. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Well, the transfer case has to be in 2hi of course with the hubs locked on pavement. I fyou aren't familiar with the 4wd system, ALL power goes through the transfercase at ALL times. It just splits the power to front and rear wheels when in 4wd. In 2wd, 100% goes to the rear wheels, but it is still through the t-case.

    Now for manual hubs. With the hubs unlocked, and the t-case in 2wd, all power to rear wheels. Leave hubs unlocked, put t-case in 4wd:front driveshaft turns, front axles turn, but there is no resistance, because the hubs are unlocked, so its basically like driving in 2wd, except the front driveshaft is turning.

    4wd, locked hubs, the power to the front wheels now HAS to turn the front wheel(s). Its as simple as that.

    With the manual hubs, for instance, going over a mountain pass, where you know its snowing, but not sure if you need 4wd. Lock the hubs in, but leave it in 2hi. When and if you need 4wd, you just shift into 4wd. When the need for 4wd has disappeared, stop and unlock them. The only part I am not 100% sure of, is if the manual hubs allow you to shift on the fly while they are locked. Again I say yes, but I'm not sure.

    With the hubs locked in, you ARE going to increase the wear on the front end, but realistically, if its mainly a street truck, you see what, maybe 5,000 miles out of 100,000 in 4wd? the front end is more than capable of holding up to wear from driving with the hubs locked in situations where they MIGHT be needed.

    Dorian
    My K5 and Chev/Olds tech/links page: <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html>http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html</A>
     
  11. backlash

    backlash 1/2 ton status

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    &lt;&lt;front end steers alot better on road when unlocked.. or "free"&gt;&gt;

    Steers better? How do you mean? Tighter, more responsive.

    I have an over correction problem that the ORD Brace helped a lot, but still there.

    Thanks
     
  12. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    Shift on the fly with auto-hubs (or the vacuum actuated axle-disconnect that's found on some vehicles) relies on syncros in the t-case. Installing auto hubs on a rig equipped with an NP205 would result in lots of t-case grinding if you tried to engage 4WD at speed while the front hubs were unlocked. [​IMG]

    The later model t-cases like the 208, 231, 241, etc. have syncros that let you shift them into 4WD at speed, even though the front output isn't yet spinning. This engages the front output shaft, which in turn engages the auto-hubs. (Vacuum actuated axle-disconnects, like found on S-10's are actuated via a vacuum switch that's mounted on the transfer case and usually don't engage until several seconds after the t-case has engaged the driveshaft. Full-size IFS front diffs use a gas that expands when heated (electrically) to engage the front diff).

    <font color=black>HarryH3 - '75 K5</font color=black>
    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://ThunderTruck.ColoradoK5.com>http://ThunderTruck.ColoradoK5.com</A>
    It's a great day to be alive...
     
  13. 84K5WITHAJUNK305

    84K5WITHAJUNK305 Registered Member

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    If you leave your hubs locked all the time, you'll wear out the bearings and stuff a lot faster. With the old T cases, you NEED to stop before shifting the t'case or risk damaging it. If you're driving somewhere that 4x4 might be needed, get out and lock in the hubs, then all you have to do is shift the t case into 4x if you need it.

    A broken 84 k5 and lots of mud, it sucks to be me
     
  14. backlash

    backlash 1/2 ton status

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    And to get of 4HI...Do you just shift out of 4 wheel, back up, or place her in neutral to get the transfer case to unluck. Or do you have to get out and unlock the hubs?
     
  15. backlash

    backlash 1/2 ton status

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    Where ya been Harry? Thought you went into retirement! Course I did too!

    Need to clarrify something. My trucks an 88, came stock with the auto hubs.

    Replaced a third spindle about 5 years ago ... come to find out the hub was toast. Replaced the hub, worked fine for 5 years. There's a popping in the same wheel when I brake ... intermitent. Yesterday, a very warm day took off after work and heard what sounded like a playing card in the spokes of a bicycle wheel clicking (how's that for description?) Anyway, shifted into 4 Hi a couple of times and the sound went away. Perhaps I have a dry hub, or it's gone bad. Even got that strange clunck when downshifting to 1st on braking (auto tranny too).

    Basically tryint to see how much difference there will be in manuals vs. autos.

    PS not looking forward to changing that spindle again.
     
  16. rocko

    rocko 1/2 ton status

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    When I switched to Manual's... Steering is more responsive and tighter in the locked and unlccked position.. as long as the tcase is in the 2 hi position..
    Leaving the hubs locked while on dry pavement shouldn't hurt it as long as it's not for extended periods of time.
    I tested it with my truck.. and didn't notice a difference in locked or free position. Hope that helps.

    Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it. <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.rocko.coloradok5.com>http://www.rocko.coloradok5.com</A>
     
  17. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    Been busy with school, kids, etc. Oh yeah, I have to work sometimes too! [​IMG]

    Auto-hubs are great, when they're working correctly. Manual hubs are much more reliable, just don't wait until you're in mud up to your waist before locking them. [​IMG]

    <font color=black>HarryH3 - '75 K5</font color=black>
    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://ThunderTruck.ColoradoK5.com>http://ThunderTruck.ColoradoK5.com</A>
    It's a great day to be alive...
     
  18. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    To get out of 4wd, just put it in 2wd and go, with manual hubs. (whether they are locked or unlocked) With the automatic hubs, you must hit 2hi, and back up. If you don't, then they stay locked until you do. Imagine that they are screws that must be tightened to engage, and loosened to engage..forward tightens (locks) them, and backing up loosens them..never understood how auto hubs could work in reverse though....

    Dorian
    My K5 and Chev/Olds tech/links page: <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html>http://www.dorianyeager.com/index2.html</A>
     
  19. backlash

    backlash 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks Guys! Will update when I figure it out!
     

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