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Detroit Locker - OR - Trac-Loc ?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Terry O, Nov 4, 2006.

  1. Terry O
    Joined: Oct 12, 2004
    Posts: 1,075

    Terry O
    Member

    Can somebody school me on the differences? Advantages/disadvantages?
    Trying to decide for a 400hp motor in a 2800# car, 8" cheater slicks. Street driven cruiser with an occasional 1/4 mile. Thanks,
    Terry
     
  2. draggin'GTO
    Joined: Jul 7, 2003
    Posts: 1,308

    draggin'GTO
    Member

    I've had both in my '64 GTO, 31-spline versions for the Ford 9".The Trac-Loc uses clutches and they seem to wear out pretty quick. Next thing you know you're doing 1-wheel burnouts. Swapped in the Detroit Locker that has a ratcheting mechanism with no clutches and it's pretty durable, no more 1-wheelin'. It's a little harsh on the street, but no big deal.For pretty much the same money I'd go with the Locker.
     
  3. Never Die
    Joined: Apr 22, 2006
    Posts: 174

    Never Die
    Member

    I'd go with a Detroit in your case... You didn't mention what rear it was going in, but since you called a Trac-Loc I'll assume a Ford 8/9". The T-Loc is the typical clutch-type LSD, which works just fine with street tires and/or lower power. However, in the 9" at least, the extra pinion bearing sucks up precious clutch space. I've never had good luck with keeping the clutches alive for as long as I like in 9"ers, I've burnt up a few prematurely.

    The Locker, on the other hand, is a mechanical/ratcheting locker. My FAVORITE 9" chunk that I have is my 3.89 Detroit Locker setup. The locker is absolutely bulletproof, if I recall it has a lifetime warranty and a 30 day RACING warranty (the ONLY part I have ever seen warrantied for race usage). These things never wear out, never need rebuilding, and allow a true 50/50 power split. You'll hear that they are noisy and unpreditcable, but the newer ones are nearly silent (mines a newer one, the only time I ever had it was in a slow, tight turn like a parking lot, it would bang when it engaged/disengaged). They are also SUPER predictable in operation, you'll learn real quick how to keep it locked or unlocked. You essentially use the throttle as an on/off switch for it. I would never trade my Locker for a Trac-Loc, no way no how. My Model A is keeping the A banjo rearend and torque tube, and I'm going to get a closed drive tranny, but if I were to go with an open rear end I would DEFINITELY use my 3.89/Locker in a 9", I love it enough to deal with it being "nontraditional".



     
  4. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 1,958

    blowby
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from San Fran

    I have an open 8" 3.00 pumpkin and a set of 4.11s for it. Will they fit the existing carrier? Been thinking about a trac loc (new ones for $300 on Feebay) but doesn't sound like it will last? Speedway has a mini-spool for only $23 but I guess that's not too good on the street eh? Also heard of guys shimming the spider gears tight for a poor man's posi, don't suppose that's too good for it either.
     
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  5. APACHE FS
    Joined: Feb 20, 2007
    Posts: 466

    APACHE FS
    Member

    Detroit, and yes their warranty is killer. They will stand behind it, and replace if you can break it.


    Posted from the TJJ App for iPhone & iPad
     
  6. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 7,834

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    Yes.
     
  7. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 1,958

    blowby
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from San Fran

    Thanks guys. Hmm, Detroit Lockers are available for the 8" apparently. Is it possible to set up a street car rear suspension to give better drive to both tires with an open diff?
     
  8. Cerberus
    Joined: May 24, 2010
    Posts: 1,361

    Cerberus
    Member

    I too have a peg leg 8" Ford 3.00 behind an 302/AOD. Been wanting to change to a lower rear end gear ratio. On eBay today there is a guy selling a 8" Ford Torque Lock Posi with new steel friction discs and springs with a 6 mth guarantee for $675. Is this worth it? He's in Pine Grove, Ca. Wants $50 to ship.

    There was a vendor (Drop Out Gears) at the Sacramento Swap meet selling third members. He had a 8" Ford with 3.00 posi. I would have bought it had it had lower gears. I got his card at A Goodguys meet. Back then, he was getting $350 - 400 for them.
     

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    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  9. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 3,378

    Truckedup
    Member

    I believe the only problem with a Locker is it drives the inside wheel only on a turn? Is this correct?
     
  10. cracker head
    Joined: Oct 7, 2007
    Posts: 915

    cracker head
    Member

    I have a trac- loc in an 8.8 in a '93 mustang. It was my only car and I drag raced it every weekend and drove it everyday ( maybe street raced it once, or 100 times). It had 325 hp on nitrous at the rear wheels and weighed about 3300lbs . I NEVER had a problem with it. Just my experience......
     
  11. powrshftr
    Joined: Mar 29, 2013
    Posts: 2,394

    powrshftr
    Member

    The 8" is pretty tough in a light car.Try the PowerTrax LocRite.It replaces
    The spiders and works exactly like a Detroit Locker.I have one in my 9" and it is bulletproof,and they are only a few hundred bucks.
     
  12. powrshftr
    Joined: Mar 29, 2013
    Posts: 2,394

    powrshftr
    Member

    One more thing,I noticed that the locker really tries to make the front end plow in the corners,but like someone mentioned earlier,you just have to get used to driving it with the throttle to unlock the ratcheting mechanism in tight turns.I love it.
     
  13. Dakota
    Joined: Jan 21, 2004
    Posts: 1,512

    Dakota
    Member
    from Beulah, ND

    i have heard you can use a 9" posi in an 8" Housing with minimal modifications.. is this true?
     
  14. 61 Fairlane
    Joined: Feb 10, 2006
    Posts: 283

    61 Fairlane
    Member

    I have a Trac Loc in my 65 3900lb Galaxie. Motor is a 466/535 hp Crate engine with 4:11 gears out back. Its been in the car since 1999. The setup has 28,000 + miles on it and runs high 12s at the strip.
    Trac Loc works fine for me.
     
  15. JEM
    Joined: Feb 6, 2007
    Posts: 1,035

    JEM
    Member

    I'd be very, very surprised.
     
  16. JEM
    Joined: Feb 6, 2007
    Posts: 1,035

    JEM
    Member

    I love the Truetrac and worm-gear torque-biasing diffs in general. Ford Trac-Lok works fine in a street car if you have it/get it cheap but not worth spending real money to buy one.

    For the application as the original poster outlined it - a strip car that doesn't need to be much of a street car - the Locker would be fine, but he's really got to be sure about what he's willing to compromise on the street.

    2800lb, 400HP, strip use - an 8" is going to be marginal, an 8.8 or 9" much less of a concern.
     
  17. Dakota
    Joined: Jan 21, 2004
    Posts: 1,512

    Dakota
    Member
    from Beulah, ND

    I read somewhere that you can Machine down the Bearing surface, to fit the 8" bearing and it will fit.

    Anyone else heard of this?
     
  18. JEM
    Joined: Feb 6, 2007
    Posts: 1,035

    JEM
    Member

    If you're talking about cars that turn corners, chassis setup for a locker or spool is going to be considerably different than for a worm-gear diff, a traditional posi/Trac-Lok friction diff will be somewhere in between.

    I may be wrong, of course, but I think there's few classes/series these days where you'd run a Locker if you didn't have to by rule (e.g. historic Trans-Am, what do the Cup tubbies run?)
     
  19. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 1,958

    blowby
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from San Fran

    I talked with him. The 3.00 posi was $550 I think. He said he buys the carriers new for $325 (same as on feebay), and gives you $50 for your core pumpkin. I actually bought my spare pumpkin there yesterday for $25, the one I'll be putting the 4:11s in.

    Don't see it listed for 8".

    I'm building what I hope will be a corner carver (live on a windy road), not sure any extra work in the corners is a good thing..

    "Parallel-axis planetary helix gears", that has to be good!
     
  20. 57JoeFoMoPar
    Joined: Sep 14, 2004
    Posts: 3,479

    57JoeFoMoPar
    Member
    from Union, NJ

    I contemplated putting a Detroit in my 9" but elected against it and went with the Trac-Loc. What a mistake. The Trac-Loc wore out after a summer and a few good burnouts. The only thing I've ever wimped out on and it was a mistake on my part. I've driven cars with the Detroit and they hook like crazy, and don't drive poorly at all. I'll echo the sentiments that the gas pedal basically becomes an on/off switch to lock the rear. Be easy with it and it will reward you with performance and reliability. My Trac-Loc rewarded me with 1 wheel burnouts.
     
  21. Dane
    Joined: May 6, 2010
    Posts: 1,357

    Dane
    Member
    from Soquel, CA


    What he said ^ These are getting a very good reputation of doing both jobs well

    [​IMG]
     
  22. Weedburner
    Joined: Nov 16, 2010
    Posts: 140

    Weedburner
    Member
    from Wa State

    Up to about 750hp i prefer a trutrac. The car is so easy to push in the staging lanes. I can make a u-turn on a 2 lane road with ease. My drag radials last a lot longer too. My car has been 5.73 in the 1/8th, with a 1.308 60'.

    Another thing to consider is the safety aspect. A locker is like a spool, so if you are on power and run thru a patch of oil or water, it's gonna head for the wall. With a TracLoc or TruTrac, the diff will open up and the car will be much easier to save.
     
  23. Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  24. Moon Rocket
    Joined: Dec 26, 2012
    Posts: 540

    Moon Rocket
    BANNED
    from GA


    I love mine! Hooks hard and never a clunk or jerk.
     
  25. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 7,834

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    I put TrueTracs in everything I own. I am looking for an 8" for my Falcon, so I can put one in there, too.
     
  26. JEM
    Joined: Feb 6, 2007
    Posts: 1,035

    JEM
    Member

    That's real money. A Truetrac is $450-ish, so a Ford Trac-Lok's gotta be $150 to be worth running in my book.

    There's a bunch of different flavors of worm-gear torque-biasing diffs. The Truetrac (an Eaton product that comes in a box labeled 'Made in Taiwan'...), a couple generations of Torsen (who's gone back and forth between US and Japanese ownership at least once in the past forty years), Quaife, DPI, Peloquin, the Autotech Wavetrac, another Japanese mfr that OE'd for Honda for a while whose name I can't recall...

    There's design differences, some of which constrain/dictate the maximum torque bias between wheels. The 'pure' worm-gear diffs go open if one wheel loses grip completely, this drives some off-roaders batty and can be a problem in some roadrace applications, the Torsen T-2R, Wavetrac, and DPI diffs (and maybe some others, but not the Truetrac, Quaife, etc.) have friction elements in them to control this.

    In roadrace applications all the friction inherent in their operation (between the gears, and between the gears and the pockets on the ends of the housings) can generate a lot of heat, if you're beating on the thing hard in prolonged use you ought to be checking the lube temp (gauge, tempilabels, etc.) and maybe running a cooler and pump.

    Just went out and looked at the Autotech site, and they've vastly expanded their range of Wavetrac diffs, including Ford 8.8 and 9in axles. They used to be the US Quaife distributor, before they decided to do their own. Twice as much money as the Truetrac, though, but US-made and covers a number of (mostly non-HAMBable) applications Eaton/Truetrac don't cover.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  27. BadgeZ28
    Joined: Oct 28, 2009
    Posts: 623

    BadgeZ28
    Member
    from Oregon

    I have a trac-loc behind a stout 406 Chevy small block. Also had one in a fourth generation F-body with a supercharger. No problems with either one. You will cuss a Detroit locker for mostly street driving IMO.
     
  28. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 1,958

    blowby
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from San Fran

    Thanks JEM. Know anything about this Powertrax unit?

    http://www.summitracing.com/search/brand/powertrax
     
  29. DoubleJ52
    Joined: Jul 15, 2007
    Posts: 230

    DoubleJ52
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Belton, MO

    All of my experience with lockers, true tracks,etc in an oval track car does not make the car tight on corner entry, it should free the car. And then they lock back in under throttle, driving both rear wheels. The locker springs give up if they get hot, true tracs generate more heat so we always ran a cooler with a pump. Street applications should be fine though.
     

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