The do's and dont's of sand driving - Page 4





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  1. #61
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    "I will deflate till I am satisfied with the tire profile. Then I check the pressure and deflate the rest to that pressure."

    Aha, I thought I was doing something wrong by using this method.
    When I do sand Im normally loaded to the max so a specified .6 or .8 is impracticable for my purpose.
    If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you'll most certainly be right. SJ

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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    .6 on a fully loaded thing is low, i would not drive around on a sand road so low, just to get through the thick stuff, and would not do any sharp turns, you will push the tyre off the rim.
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  3. #63
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Dit hang maar net af wat jy in die duine wil gaan doen.
    Ek was nou weer in Namibia gewees en my diesel het hom baie mooi gedra het nogal groot duine uit gery met hom en was gelaai gewees.
    Quote Originally Posted by JCMostert View Post
    I was told to never use a diesel engine on dunes, being a low resolution engine. Anyone that can confirm this (the never use diesel engine on dunes, not the low resolution part)?

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  5. #64
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Quote Originally Posted by jelo View Post
    I was told earlier on in this thread that this is incorrect.
    Traction control will mess you up in the sand. The vehicle will misinterpret the variations in traction from sand and will override your driving- it will respond by affecting throttle response, braking etc making driving very frustrating and it is much more likely you will get stuck.

    Lots of vehicles have a mode for sand driving. This is fine, and you can certainly use it, but in my experience you are much better to switch everything off- if your vehicle will let you. Some modern 4x4s will not actually let you completely shut down driving aids.

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  7. #65
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Quote Originally Posted by Stranger View Post
    Oh Boy, there is sand and there is sand. Beach sand, desert sand, hard pack sand, loose pack sand roads and corrugated sand, everywhere there is sand.

    Somewhere on a trip we are going to encounter it, so this thread is to encourage those that have encountered it to share the experiances and what worked.

    The first advice I was given was ... DEFLATE tyres. I can confirm that this works as I have only ever been stuck in mud and never sand (mud will be a separate thread)

    The second advice I was given was, when driving in deep sand, get your thumbs outside the steering wheel and don't try to "steer" through the tracks. Let the wheels find their own way with just small inputs. Along with this was the advice, if you do need to steer out of the track, then "swing and centre". This is a method where you sharply swing the steering wheel in one direction and then immediately centre the wheels again. Takes some cojones first couple of times, but once you have it, then you will always have it.

    Please add, what can your experience help us with ?
    hi stranger, can you elaborate on the swing and centre part. Iím off to the CKGR next June and any advice on sand driving will be read with interest as my sand driving experience is limited.
    RobertProud

  8. #66
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Sure

    if you are in deep sand and in particular if you are in sand tracks then the best is to stay in those tracks and follow them by allowing the steering wheel to find it's own path. Gentle inputs are all that is needed.

    Should you have to climb out of those tracks you have to sharply swing the wheel and then immediately centre it again.

    If you do not do this what happens is the tyre will be side on to the sand but still going forward. This causes resistance, will slow you down and you will not change direction.

    It does not always work first time, should it not then allow yourself back onto the track and try again.

    The technique is to keep the wheels rotating forward and the momentum going. Roads such as the Mabua sand rd, the rd to Matswere gate and the rd to Nxai pan are all roads where this method could help.
    Lusted for a Landy but the Pajero was sexier and bigger in the right departments, just like my Missus.

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  9. #67
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Sand driving is actually very simple when followin some basic rules:
    1) Don't overload. Heavy vehicles get stuck easily
    2) Nurse the vehicle accross sand. Do not put foot down(except for going up a dune)
    3) Drop the tire pressure
    4) on trailers - dont overload
    5) If you drop tire pressure on towing vehicle, do the same on trailer
    6) As mentioned-tracktion control OFF
    7) Always use the highest gear possible
    Dont change gears like a muchu-take it easy.
    On some or rather many sandy stretches you will find the vehicle starting to bounce. Slow down immidiately or you will wreck the road further as well as part of your equipment.
    Never try to be cool. You will make a fool of yourself
    As a principle I always try the road with least resistance.
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  10. #68
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Quote Originally Posted by Robertproud View Post
    hi stranger, can you elaborate on the swing and centre part. Iím off to the CKGR next June and any advice on sand driving will be read with interest as my sand driving experience is limited.
    RobertProud
    Andrew St Pierre White explains and demonstrates it quite well in this video, starting at 03:21

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  12. #69
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Lots of useful info here - thanks Stranger for posting and thanks everyone who contributed

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  14. #70
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Quote Originally Posted by rorywg View Post
    Traction control will mess you up in the sand. The vehicle will misinterpret the variations in traction from sand and will override your driving- it will respond by affecting throttle response, braking etc making driving very frustrating and it is much more likely you will get stuck.

    Lots of vehicles have a mode for sand driving. This is fine, and you can certainly use it, but in my experience you are much better to switch everything off- if your vehicle will let you. Some modern 4x4s will not actually let you completely shut down driving aids.
    absolutely my experience in hot Moz sand but hey, I'm just a keyboard warrior........
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  15. #71
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    A shovel or spade really comes in handy when stuck as hot sand is unkind to the hands.

    Out of interest, are there places in Gauteng where one can go to practice sand driving? Practical experience goes a long way, along with guidance and tips as posted here.
    Last edited by Riaan van Wyk; 2019/09/18 at 08:32 AM. Reason: Spelling
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  16. #72
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Although I have done a fair amount of sand-driving, I can only give this last bit of advice: Don't go looking for trouble, it will find you.
    We have driven to many places and enjoyed it immensely, but the old-hands will say that rather use your 4x4 to GET to places that others have not seen, rather than to get in trouble where you should not have been in the first place.
    Life starts
    where the comfort-zone ends.

  17. #73
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Deflating tyres for sand driving in bushveld areas where elephants are present represents striking a bit of a balance. The problem is that over many years of breaking off branches etc near sand tracks there are many hard wood shards present in the sand including sand tracks that are as hard as iron with sharp points and they stick out of the sand at all different angles. They and exposed tree roots are notorious for gashing holes in the sidewalls of tyres and if that happens the tyre is invariably finished.

    Seriously deflating tyres in these circumstances significantly increases the risk of the sidewalls being gashed by a shard or root. Better to risk getting stuck than loosing a tyre by only moderately deflating tyres then goung to extremes plus need to really focus on avoiding potentially damaging shards sticking out of the sand and tree roots.

    There is also the constant temptation in these circumstances to put the outside set of tyres on the very edge of a sand track when there are serious corrugations. That also increases the risk of sidewall damage from especially bush and tree roots. So when doing this one needs to be particularly alert and keep a check on speed so you have time to react and avoid.

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  19. #74
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    My son in law is doing a movie in the Vioolsdrift area.
    They have lost 26 tyres last week.
    So consider the terrain you must cross to get to your destination.

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  21. #75
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Ford 3.2 Auto and Excape Caravan

    Normal pressures 2.5 front car and caravan 3.0 bar rear wheels on tar . On gravel itís 1.5 bar all round . Deep sand 0.8 all round Got caught out at Groenrivier at 1.1 and friendly advice from blokes behind took it to 0.8 and no problem .One question how low can you go before debeading and how far and fast can one travel at 0.8 ?

  22. #76
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Is what I like about Ou Trekpad, summer and winter driving vastly different......
    Now 1 Bar perfectly good, mid summer and later, probably 0.6 Bar.
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  23. #77
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    Default Re: The do's and dont's of sand driving

    Quote Originally Posted by CoffeeDoc View Post
    Ford 3.2 Auto and Excape Caravan

    Normal pressures 2.5 front car and caravan 3.0 bar rear wheels on tar . On gravel itís 1.5 bar all round . Deep sand 0.8 all round Got caught out at Groenrivier at 1.1 and friendly advice from blokes behind took it to 0.8 and no problem .One question how low can you go before debeading and how far and fast can one travel at 0.8 ?
    I normally think in psi- sorry!

    I have a Ford F150 Raptor (which has done a lot of offroading and 160,000km) and a Lexus LX570 (almost 300,000km!). Both are big (2.5-3 tonne) and powerful (400bhp, V8 petrol). So I have plenty of oomph to get out of trouble, but also more than enough to get into trouble!

    I find that I can drive at 14-16 psi in comfort in all sandy terrain (dunes, flat desert, etc) without the risk of debeading. I know fomo experience that my tires will take a lot of punishment before they debead so long as I stay to this pressure. I need to be a little careful- if I start to slide down a slipface, turn the tires in the direction of the slide, etc. I very often go much lower if the conditions require it- for example, if it is hot, if the sand is particularly soft, if I am climbing and descending steep faces. I have driven long distances traversing big dunes at less than 10psi (I have 35" BFG KO2 tires on my Raptor and 31" Dunlop Grand Trek on my LX). When I go out and play in the dunes I will normally be at 15psi and can slide/slip/travel quickly but normally I am considerably below 50kmh. I do get stupid in the Raptor and hit speeds of over 100kph when the conditions allow it, but no sharp turns...!

    The biggest problem with very low pressures is obviously debeading, but you can reset the bead pretty easily if you jack up the affected wheel (don't forget to bring a piece of timber or a sand track that you can rest your jack on- otherwise it will bury itself in the sand) and stick on a compressor (which you should carry at all times, obviously). It will take a few minutes and you sometimes need to manipulate the tire to help it develop a seal (you can use a ratchet strap or tow strap to help with this, but there is normally no need), and the bead will normally pop back on. It is best if you can grease or lubricate the bead and it will be even easier... even some water helps the bead to move, and to generate a seal. There is a quicker way to rebead the tire using a little petrol and igniting it, but this can go very badly wrong- check out youtube!

    The other risk of running tire pressures that are too low is that you tear the sidewall. I have done this once- I think I must have overdeflated and was running at around 5psi and went too fast, and slipped too much down dune faces. The tire shredded. An expensive lesson.

    I have found that good all terrain tires (the BFG is excellent; the Dunlop Grand Trek is terrible and mainly a road tire) are pretty thorn-resistant. We have a lot of Acacia thorns; these will penetrate most things but normally I am able to pull them out and have rarely had a thorn puncture. It sounds as though you guys get bigger, badder thorns than we are used to! I always carry a good spare and a repair kit.

    Driving in real wilderness sand is wonderful. The texture of virgin sand is so smooth and quiet- it is very zen getting your vehicle over, up and down through interesting terrain. I prefer to go where there are no tracks.

    The key is really all about deflating enough (more than you think- the tire should roughly double its contact area) and then managing your speed so you are going fast enough to maintain momentum but slow enough to avoid damage. We have done great trips out to the Empty Quarter, more than 150km from the nearest person, and completely self reliant. Yes- you will get stuck. But you can recover from most situations simply by deflating a bit more, and a little digging to remove the main problem (normally where the chassis is grounded on the sand, so the tires are no longer supporting your weight). I have deflated to almost zero and that has been OK to move my truck a couple of meters, until I can reinflate and go off again.

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