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Visco lok now sounds like a bag of hammers in a dryer


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Ok, since getting the 2021 Defender back (see previous thread) I am now able to run my trails.  Everything from rock crawls to mud hills, mud holes and general flat riding.  So, long story short, I stuck the Defender in total mud and when the visco tried to lock up the other axle, it sounds like a bag of hammers in a dryer…this can’t be good.  Then I take to my Little Rock stair step and I hear the same thing….and so it goes.  Also went to an area that I can get a wheel off the ground and one in a large trench.  Again, doesn’t sound good.  Showed the video of me in the situations and the dealer tech agreed, the pinion gears/front diff is toast.  This rig has less than 450 miles on it and I don’t hammer it. (I have two other buggies with 5k and 2.5k miles on them-so I don’t beat on them.

Anyway, they have submitted it for warranty and will be covered, just waiting on parts but I have the buggy.  Was researching on the inner webs and see two routes for aftermarket ‘fixes’ for the viso-lok habits.  I don’t necessarily like the fact I have to have the spinning wheel rotate before the other engages and then becomes 4wd.  Also it seems that eventually all visco-lok’s crap out at some point.   So, at some point I will be swapping the front diff out.  Most likely for the TORQ locker but don’t want to take a new warrantied front diff and disable/remove the visco guts.  Guess I will find a ‘used’ one and put the TORQ locker in it and swap it in the Defender.  

Anyone have a similar experience with their front diff or are you running strong on factory diff?




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Once you have the front diff back together you can try this one 

With the pinlocker you can remove the brand new visco lok component and simply replace with the pin locker unit and you can lock and unlock with a switch on the dash. So far no problem with the diff but I did break both front axles on a minor stuck and so far I haven't found anyone that makes the HD ones for the Cab model except the pricey ones?🙂

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Yeah, SATV a pin locker like the HALO.  Where is the SATV locker made?  I would sway to the HALO for the fact that they are USA made.

Side note…..my other Yamaha Viking is a solid locker, my 2000 TJ has ARB lockers and the Polaris Ranger has the cage locker-but total front diff lock.  I read where people are complaining about broken shafts from the torque, but I know how to run that set up.  Have to be easy on the skinny pedal on rocks, and you don’t steer well  on solid surfaces.  

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  • 3 weeks later...

Got the buggy back (quick turnaround-only a day to swap it out once they got the part).  Will go test this weekend.  I will most likely get the halo locker once the warranty runs out -depending on the durability of the replacement visco-lok.

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