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Lockers or Truetrac for Unpaved Deep Snow?

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by kiteboarder, Jun 18, 2017.

  1. Jun 18, 2017 at 7:26 PM
    #1
    kiteboarder

    kiteboarder [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I'm buying a new Tacoma soon and I'm torn between going with an SR and adding lockers or LSD, or going with the TRD Offroad. For me, it's a case of need. See this:

    I have a 2001 SR5 4x4 with open diffs. My truck couldn't make it out of my driveway (8th mile or so), in 4x4, with new tires... and even with chains at the back (not on all 4). This was in 3 feet of snow and ice, slightly uphill. Unplowed, unpaved road.

    I'm not buying a new truck because of this, mind you. That's a whole other story. Let's focus on the problem:

    I NEED SOMETHING THAT WILL WORK.

    So my options are, while I'm in the process of getting a new truck...

    1. Buy a TRD OffRoad and add a locker or truetrac at the front.
    2. Buy a non TRD OR Tacoma (Sport, SR or SR5) and add air lockers on both ends.
    3. Buy a non TRD OR Tacoma (Sport, SR or SR5) and add Truetrac on both ends.

    Note that in worse case scenarios, I'll also do V-bar chains on all 4 tires. But from experience, this is a tricky driveway to get out of.

    I understand how lockers work. I also understand that they are for when one tire is completely off the ground. However, in some of these situations, even though all 4 tires are on the ground, when it's deep snow and ice, you might as well be floating in the air. When one tires starts spinning, it's just like if it were up in the air.
     
  2. Jun 18, 2017 at 7:32 PM
    #2
    Bishop84

    Bishop84 Well-Known Member

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    The E locker is a pain to engage, and I've sat for minutes with many trucks waiting in line for me to engage my locker in the snow.

    I would personally get a TRD Sport, add air and lockers. Studded Duratracs will fair better than chains on M/T tires, Also I'm not sure if we can chain the front tires on our trucks.

    Short wheel base is also a must, but you intend on sticking to manual so thats not an issue. Would you consider an FJ cruiser?
     
  3. Jun 18, 2017 at 7:38 PM
    #3
    igno1tus

    igno1tus How does this site know about everyone's member ?

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    I'd say move
     
  4. Jun 18, 2017 at 7:44 PM
    #4
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 Vehicle Design Engineer

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    I've had trucks locked front and rear, and I've had trucks with Truetracs front and rear. If you are not doing extreme rock crawling I would do the truetracs hands down. Locked front and rear will provide the best traction, but in 4hi on the street, in your driveway, or 4wd anywhere the ability for the truck to find traction with the front and rear truetracs is awesome. No buttons to push, no lack of steering ability (like lockers). The front and rear truetracs just find traction and apply it to the ground with no driver input. I often think of gutting my OR's rear and swapping with a sport so I can run the truetrac instead of the selectable locker. I'd use the truetrac nearly every to apply my superchargers power to the ground vs the locker once a year.
     
    ARCHIVE likes this.
  5. Jun 18, 2017 at 7:45 PM
    #5
    Tanselow

    Tanselow Well-Known Member

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  6. Jun 18, 2017 at 9:42 PM
    #6
    JoefromPTC

    JoefromPTC Well-Known Member

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    Is there any possibility of improving your driveway? Re-grade maybe? Once you get to the road, any issues there? Sounds pretty rugged to me, maybe a bigger, heavier truck would be the way to go?
     
  7. Jun 18, 2017 at 10:15 PM
    #7
    kiteboarder

    kiteboarder [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn’t consider an FJ. I mean, I’ve considered it… as well as Jeeps… but I kinda really need the bed.

    I can’t run studded. See, my situation is very particular. I live in SoCal, but high in the mountains. We’ll get these freak snow storms about 4 to 5 times a year, and getting in and out can be tricky. But once on the main road, it’s plowed… and then once down at sea level, it’s summer.
     
  8. Jun 18, 2017 at 10:15 PM
    #8
    kiteboarder

    kiteboarder [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Lol. No. I just bought this place recently. I really like it. I get snow and summer all in the same day. I just have to drive down a couple thousand feet. :)
     
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  9. Jun 18, 2017 at 10:17 PM
    #9
    kiteboarder

    kiteboarder [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I appreciate this feedback. Specially because I was just about ready to buy a TRD Offroad. In fact, I was at the dealer today. Maybe I'll stick to my original plan of buying the SR 4-cyl 4x4 5MT and stick Truetracs front and back. Or splurge a little on the Sport and do Truetracs.
     
  10. Jun 18, 2017 at 10:20 PM
    #10
    kiteboarder

    kiteboarder [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I can improve it a bit, or a lot, but the budget is just not there. If it were 300 feet that'd be doable, but it's about an 1/8th of a mile or so. Maybe a 1/16th of a mile. Still a lot. Either way, we fix the road twice a year with a bulldozer, so it can be pretty smooth. But there's no changing the fact that it's uphill and unpaved and gets covered in snow and ice.

    @Tanselow - I could consider plowing. But I'm not going to do it with a Tacoma... and I still need the truck, and now I would have to spend on a tractor and plow, etc. Maybe in the future. Right now I'm looking for a short term solution.
     
  11. Jun 18, 2017 at 10:35 PM
    #11
    JoefromPTC

    JoefromPTC Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like an awesome place to live! You get to 4-wheel every day! You also have a very well built and reliable truck right now, the 2001 4x4 is one of the best trucks out there... why not upgrade to lockers on it? Or...

    IMG_1594.jpg
     
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  12. Jun 18, 2017 at 11:41 PM
    #12
    kiteboarder

    kiteboarder [OP] Well-Known Member

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    It is a great place to live :)

    Long story short I gave my truck to my wife. She might sell it. But that's her problem, not mine. Haha. In the meantime, I'm searching for mine.
     
  13. Jun 19, 2017 at 8:15 AM
    #13
    Sugar Silva

    Sugar Silva Well-Known Member

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  14. Jun 19, 2017 at 8:24 AM
    #14
    Kyitty

    Kyitty Mr. Beard

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    Maybe get a bigger truck and then plow? Or buy an old 3/4 - 1 ton with a plow?

    I have a client here in MT who has a similar driveway issue. He has a huge tractor with a plow. His 1 ton gets stuck because the snow drifts are so heavy. But this is why many folks here own snowmobiles. Park at the end of the driveway, snowmobile to and from the house. Chances are if a 1 ton can't push it you can't drive through it either.
     
  15. Jun 19, 2017 at 8:51 AM
    #15
    Yetimetchkangmi

    Yetimetchkangmi Well-Known Member

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    My 1st gen experience with deep unplowed snow (30" or more) is this:
    1. You absolutely can't force your way thru - not gonna work.
    2. If you get stuck, back up and then go forward again until you get stuck again (it will happen), repeat.
    3. Tire pressure is critical in a non-paved snow covered road, so you somewhat "float" versus dig (beadlocks at single digits psi are great but somewhat less than practical for street use).
    4. Tire choice is also critical (I have BFG KM2 255/80-17 and I had them sipped).
    5. Using a locker during an off camber snow covered road will cause the vehicle to slide towards the downhill, there are many in PNW stating alarming results to this.

    My 1st gen experience with 8-10" unplowed snow on paved roads:
    1. Dominating
    2. I was able to stop on many hills, ask people if they needed assistance.
    3. Uphills were without the use of rear e-locker or front ARB locker.
    4. Maintained 30+ psi but was willing/able to lower if I was in trouble or stuck.

    Tires make a huge difference in ability in the snow.
    Easy on the skinny pedal.

    to answer your question: lockers as then you control when they are engaged/disengaged.
     
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  16. Jun 19, 2017 at 9:09 AM
    #16
    kiteboarder

    kiteboarder [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Hi, this might be something I can consider in the future. The bigger truck with a plow. Snowmobile is out of the question really, as I'd have to leave it by the main road and, well, that wouldn't be wise.
     
  17. Jun 19, 2017 at 9:13 AM
    #17
    winguyen

    winguyen Well-Known Member

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    The newer TRD ORs have a-trac in addition to the rear locker
     
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  18. Jun 19, 2017 at 9:15 AM
    #18
    kiteboarder

    kiteboarder [OP] Well-Known Member

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    ^^^ I think that might be only on the automatics, not the manuals? Or is that crawl-control with a fancy name?
     
  19. Jun 19, 2017 at 9:24 AM
    #19
    EDDO

    EDDO                         

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                                                                                        CBI Moab 2.0 front bumper CBI Trail Rider 2.0 rear bumper B.A.M.F. sliders Exhaust crossover relocate Icon 2.5 front and 2.0 rear Camburg balljoint UCAs Welded stock alignment tabs Dakar Leaf Springs and 14" x 650 lb. coils Wheeler's SuperBumps (front) Icon Hydro Bumps with U-bolt flip Relentless Fab tailgate plate Total Chaos Bed Stiffeners 265/75R16 BFG T/A KO2 on black TRD faux beadlocks PTR18-35090 Custom Double Cardan Driveshaft from South Bay Driveline 2.5" dia .134" wall front, 3.0" dia .125" wall rear. Spicer 1310 joints, Spicer CB
    TRD OR does well in the snow. Have to be in low range in order to activate a-trac and the rear e-locker. If all 4 are spinning; well, at that point, use the winch.

     
  20. Jun 19, 2017 at 9:24 AM
    #20
    winguyen

    winguyen Well-Known Member

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    I'm pretty sure it's on manuals as well but only with the off-road package and I think it has to be an '09+
     

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