Originally Posted by r0ng5
Offroading driving... usually dirt roads. I've been having the most problem trying to go up hills. During the last meet a few days ago, I couldn't go up 3 different hills, i had to back up and gun it up faster. Also, with uneven terrain (like.. one side is super rocky, the other pretty smooth), I've had so many problem trying to get through it. I hate gunning my truck just to go up hills... so yeah, i'd rather get more traction and thread lightly.
I dont' know if this makes a difference, but i have traction bars and they help tremendously.
Okay, the "follow-up" questions, lol.
How important is that traction to you? Are you willing to spend some more to get both worlds?
There are at least 2 different limited slip/locker combo's out there, but it's more money and QUITE a bit more if you pay for the install and can't get someone to help you do it. That's what I'm running and I love the limited slip in dirt and on the street and the locker on more extreme offroad terrain. It's one of the main reasons I can halfway wheel my 4x2 at all.
Without manual hubs, or hubs that actually unlock well automatically, a locker up front can be trouble for sure. There are people using the LockRite or NoSlip lockers that insert into the carrier up front for even some more extreme wheeling. Adrian, SupersonicFX4 comes to mind. He's running an automatic locker in the front only.
I sure disagree that a LS in the rear and locker up front is "optimum". What's best is SELECTABLE lockers front and rear! But of course, that's some serious $$$ that most aren't willing to spend. If you make the rear locker a LS/locker combo in that case, it becomes quite a winning combination.
The biggest obstacle you face is the inevitable $$$ problems. There are products out there to give you the best of both worlds, but they require installation.
Some folks really like the Detroit Locker as a full carrier replacement, as well as those LockRight/NoSlip products mentioned earlier. The cheif disadvanatage I see with them is hard driven street handling.
What that comes from is some of the same problems you can have with a limited slip. There's a rule-of-thumb for tires: when traction is lost in any direction, traction is lost in all directions.
When you are doing tight handling under throttle, an LS or locker can cause you to lose control. What happens is you can break BOTH tires loose and lose your lateral traction on turns. The hot-rod community has known this for years and light RWD muscle cars with LS rears have to be throttled VERY gingerly through powered turns. An open is more forgiving.
The automatic lockers can cause even more sudden loss if you get on the throttle too hard in the middle of a turn. If they suddenly lock, you can lose traction from both wheels with predictable results.
So, if you drive hard on the street, an automatic locker may not be the ticket.
So, reviewing: we know your offroad problems, and they would be helped (but not solved) by LS, and helped much more by a locker.
But when you indicate your street style, it may come more into focus with the comments I've made above.
To make a good decision takes some "analysis", lol!