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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 1994 RRC (automatic transmission) with a shifter on the floor to go into 4WD. I'm supposed to put the car into N and then shift into either low four or high four at 0 to 5 mph. I can definitely feel the shifter engaging when going into low four (pushing the shifter upwards/away from me), but I can't tell if I'm successful in shifting into high four (pulling the shifter down/towards the driver). If you were measuring in inches (or centimeters) how far from Neutral on the shifter is each version of 4WD? I think I'm either constantly driving in 4WD or it doesn't engage. I went two miles down my winding dirt road in several inches of snow today and didn't have any trouble, but want to get ready for those days when I'm going through a foot plus of snow! I've only had the car since July, so this is my first VT winter with it.
 

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Its always in 4wd. I am assuming you want to know if its in Low or High? The linkage on a borg warner (what came stock with your model) only has 2 options. Neutral is in the middle. Can you find neutral? That would be the first test. Get it in neutral / then shift into drive. If Neutral is working, the car will not move when put back into gear. Then go back to neutral and test you can get into L and H. With the Borg Warner, the diff will lock automatically. Do a fluid service on it if you haven't already.
 

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As above, range shift lever only gives low, neutral and high. Many other 4X4 didn't have a central differential so when in normal use the front axle and drive was disconnected. They had to be locked into 4 to give that facility.

This car was designed from outset with permanent 4 wheel drive using three differentials, sorry no need to switch anything.

It should, as already pointed, out have a viscous lock on the centre diff. This works by allowing the minimal slip for normal operation but preventing one axle being driven faster than the other if you get one wheel loose traction.

Basically in high range gearing you can just drive it without switching anything, it'll deploy everything thing it's got without interference.
 

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Excuse my ignorance...

Do our classics have 3 locking diffs? I am thinking for example of the Mercedes G class which has 3 switches to lock the front, rear, and center diff. Will our trucks do this for us automatically?
 

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No, only locking of centre diff unless aftermarket equipment is installed to lock front or rear.

You can't use locking on any reasonable grip surface as it'll stress the transmission components too much.

With centre diff locked, you have to loose traction on two separate wheels, one on each axle, to prevent it moving itself. It has far greater axle articulation than most things to keep all wheels in traction. The G wagon has far more restricted axle movement so if you get it diagonally cross axled with two diagonally opposed wheels in the air, it'll stop it moving.

In extremes they fit them to help out but generally they're not needed in day to day use.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
This was really helpful, thanks! I had no idea it was always in 4wd. I thought it was always in 2wd and 4wd had to be engaged. So I'd been in high 4 all along, as you suggested. I had a safe drive home up a long dirt road in a foot of snow!
 

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No, only locking of centre diff unless aftermarket equipment is installed to lock front or rear.

You can't use locking on any reasonable grip surface as it'll stress the transmission components too much.

With centre diff locked, you have to loose traction on two separate wheels, one on each axle, to prevent it moving itself. It has far greater axle articulation than most things to keep all wheels in traction. The G wagon has far more restricted axle movement so if you get it diagonally cross axled with two diagonally opposed wheels in the air, it'll stop it moving.

In extremes they fit them to help out but generally they're not needed in day to day use.
Interesting... thanks for the explanation!

-Christian
 
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