Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification





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  1. #1
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    Default Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Hi guys,

    We are looking at buying a second hand land cruiser, preferably the 4.5 V8, either the 76 or 79 DC. However we are still confused regarding the auto/manual hubs.

    Please correct me if I am wrong:

    I get you have to climb out of the cab and lock the hubs (Manual Hubs) and with Auto you can do that from within the cab, however I have heard that you cannot do this if you are going to drive a long stretch in 4x4, then it is better to lock them manually in any case (same as the manual hubs).

    Is my understanding correct?

    Which do you prefer? I.e is the manual hubs a pain in the butt or not?

    Thanks!!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    We have two cruisers with auto hubs and a v8 with manual hubs. The auto hubs work great and have not given hastles at all. Once you used to the auto hubs the manuals are a pain sometimes. I have driven in 4x4 for long distances with the hubs in auto and all works fine.

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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Agree , those hubs don't make sense, from what I gather in auto you have to stop when shifting to 4x4, when locked you can shift on the fly!?.

    And you have to lock them from time to time to lubricate the system,
    Johan Kriel

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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Zaan

    1) You have to stop before engaging 4WD with the Auto Hubs. With the hubs locked, you can shift to 4x4 on the fly, without even having to use your clutch.
    2) In auto mode, the hubs'splines do'nt lock as solidly as in the manual locked hub mode. I'd say auto hub mode should only be used occasionally, like in in a muddy stretch where you do'nt want to get out and manually lock the hubs.
    3) You can drive with the hubs locked for a looooong time, no hassles. Do NOT drive in 4WD mode on solid surfaces, even more so in auto hub mode.

    As a rule, I use the auto hubs like in the "traditional" way - only 4WD if the hubs are manually locked. I think the auto hub whatchamakolit thingie is a load of crap.
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    I would not trust it to drive long distances in auto, it may disengage when running free!?
    Johan Kriel

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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    This is an explanation from a USA based website, and for all sense and purpose while the vehicle is not the same, the functionality remains pretty consistent across the manufacturers:

    "Jeepn gave a good description of how they work. The internals of the hubs have a spring which keeps the engagement teeth separated when they are not under power from the differential. When you put the transfer case in 4wd and power is transferred out to the hubs there is a mechanism which overpowers this spring and causes the teeth to engage, locking the hub. When you go from a forward direction to reverse the hubs actually disengage and re-engage very quickly. Rocking a stuck vehicle back and forth is what usually blows an automatic hub. All the disengaging and re-engaging under power is too much for them to handle. I know this one from first hand experience. My pickup was stuck in about 2 feet of heavy, wet snow and we had to rock it many times to get it out. I could hear the hubs going south (major grinding noises) and luckily they lasted long enough to get out. Once out they wouldn't disengage and I ended up replacing them with manuals. If the axles you are buying have auto hubs they are very easy to replace with manuals. Mine took about 30 minutes for the first one and about 10 for the second once I had seen how the internals worked."

    I have no personal experience of this as my hubs are manual lock, however for the last 20 years or so I have it on good advice from a "seasoned" professional that the above statement is extremely valid, the fact that on auto rocking the vehicle backwards and forwards has to go through a automated disengagement process which can result in negative functionality. As mentioned, I have no clear decisive facts in this regard, but the "engineering" valuation makes sense to me.

    Of course, if the hubs are completely unlocked, and the transfercase is in 2wd, then the front prop is idle, and as such forcing the vehicle into 4wd on the move at speed will cause a major crash of transfercase internals in connection with the front output drive. If the vehicle front hub is locked, but only in 2wd, then offroad at speed selecting 4wd will have no negative effect as the front prop will be spinning at the same speed as the rear. Please note I say this in the understanding that the vehicle is moving at its own speed with no restrictions to the front axle / wheels drive per se. Naturally, if the rear wheels are spinning, the front wheels still because you are in a pile of mud, you will crash the transfercase front output coupling / gears once again..

    Now, if you are in auto mode 2wd, if this mode exists, then I would well imagine that the same applies as above..??.., considering proper auto lock function requires input torque from the "driven" front axle, not "idle front axle rotation under 2wd, despite auto locks being on..
    Last edited by Marcochezzi; 2016/02/24 at 09:01 AM.
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Quote Originally Posted by JLK View Post
    I would not trust it to drive long distances in auto, it may disengage when running free!?
    In fact this is probably the only place where I would trust Auto locks, as long as you are driving on sand or gravel, not on rocks!!, and off the tar (assuming you are in 4wd)

    Using the system in Auto if you plan to play in the mud or rocks where plenty forward / reverse action is required in my opinion is a no-no. It's not that it won't work, its just better in permanent lock as you do away with the engage/disengage situation as per my previous post, minimising exaggerated wear or potential breakages of the sliding collar in the hubs.

    Driving forward on sand at long stretches will keep the hubs engaged in Auto due to the torque transfer to the front axle, and chances are that should it potentially slip out, then by default on the next left or right turn the differential differences between the front and rear axle (Axle Wind) will by default re-engage.

    its the forward backward movements where it is known to fall short, not always that is, but it is a known fact..
    Last edited by Marcochezzi; 2016/02/24 at 09:29 AM.
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Just lock the hubs when going on a 4x4 trip/trail, and ONLY use 4DW mode in the auto hubs thingies in emergencies.
    Last edited by Petri Oosthuizen; 2016/02/24 at 09:45 AM.
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Quote Originally Posted by Petri Oosthuizen View Post
    Just lock the hubs when going on a 4x4 trip/trail, and ONLY use 4DW mode in the auto hubs thingies in emergencies.
    Yes, on the farm I keep the hubs locked, and the tcase in 2h, when I go to town or drive far, I put the hubs in free, to save a little diesel(maybe). So I will suggest keep it in free, and once you reach your destination put the hubs in lock, and when you get stuck selct 4H or 4L, not necessary to use Auto.
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    As I suggested above, easiest way is to treat the auto hubs as if they were the old traditional ones.
    "Auto" on the hub dial means "Unlocked". Meaning get into the habit of sommer never usung 4WD mode with the hubs on auto.
    I think the newer 79 Cruisers actuallu did away with these silly auto hub jobbies.....
    Buy a wheel spanner at Midas and saw the handle shorter, then you have a handy "dedicated" hub spanner.
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Yip, I also used to keep the hubs locked on the farm. Then you can shift as you wish between 4wd and 2wd. Some times forget to unlock the hubs when going to town, but it does no harm as long its not in 4wd, it just lubricated the hubs.

    Petri, stem, sal die V6 ook so hanteer, asof dit manual hubs is. En so af en toe dorp toe ook ry met die hubs gelock
    Johan Kriel

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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Quote Originally Posted by JLK View Post
    Yip, I also used to keep the hubs locked on the farm. Then you can shift as you wish between 4wd and 2wd. Some times forget to unlock the hubs when going to town, but it does no harm as long its not in 4wd, it just lubricated the hubs.

    Petri, stem, sal die V6 ook so hanteer, asof dit manual hubs is. En so af en toe dorp toe ook ry met die hubs gelock
    Always drove my Hardbody with front hubs locked in 2H. Kept the hubs and diff lubricated.

    I've seen a front diff that has rusted solid because the owner went through water, the hot diff sucked in some water, and because he didn't lock the hubs or engage 4WD afterwards, the center portion rusted solid. There was a clear water level mark inside the carrier casing. If he'd engaged 4WD more often or locked the hubs, the damage would have been less.
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Zaan, Oom Petri weet van die goed. hy het al baie comments op die topic geskryf en ek stem saam met hom. Ek moes al eenkeer engage met die auto toe ek n U-turn maak en bietjie meer modder getrap as wat ek gedog het daar was, so wou nie uitklim nie. Maar as ek weet ons gaan van die pad af sit ek hom ook op Manual.
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    I agree with Petri. My 76 has auto hubs, I treat it like normal manual ones, I never use the auto function. Before using 4wd, I get out and manually lock them until I don't need 4wd. When I dont use 4wd, I occasionally just lock the hubs in 2wd to make sure everything stays lubricated.
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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    If you use 4x4 often, just leave them locked, no mechanical impact and negligible fuel impact.

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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    I talked to our local cruiser mechanic about this auto/manual hubs yesterday.

    He words: "Auto locks is ok for getting you thr' a difficult spot. You stop select 4x4 and go thr it, and then go back to 2x4 . If you need to drive in 4x4 lock it manual.' As suggested above.

    According to him: If you drive long distances in auto the hubs will deselect when not pulling, then the hubs are not turning the same speed as the drive shafts anymore, and when engaged again that's where the damaged are done.
    Johan Kriel

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  17. #17
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    Default

    Is this just a cruiser thing because all bakkies come with auto locking hubs now?
    PS I drive a cruiser so I am not being malicious just asking why say the hilux doesn't have this issue.
    Last edited by bones; 2016/02/27 at 09:33 PM.
    Pieter

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    Default Re: Land Cruiser Auto/Manual Hubs clarification

    Quote Originally Posted by bones View Post
    Is this just a cruiser thing because all bakkies come with auto locking hubs now?
    PS I drive a cruiser so I am not being malicious just asking why say the hilux doesn't have this issue.
    Not so sure this statement is totally accurate, most newer IFS 4x4 bakkies come with permanently engaged front hubs, not selectable.

    If the bakkie is a permanent 4x4 then the transfer case is differentiated.
    If it's not permanent then the front axle rotates the front prop when in 2wd with obviously no driven load from the transfercase, which of course converts to a driven load if 4x4 is then selected. Interestingly enough, the very early fj landcruisers (post WW2) worked on this very principle where the axle would permanently drive the prop when in 2WD.

    In the days of old When selectable hubs came out it was seen as an advantage being able to completely disconnect the drive between the transfercase & front axle via the 2wd & unlocked front hubs settings in that it presented less rotational mass and therefore fuel savings, which in truth was barely measurable.
    Last edited by Marcochezzi; 2016/02/28 at 09:59 PM.
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    Default

    Thank you. That clears it up for me.
    Pieter

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