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Old 10-14-2018, 11:20 AM   #101
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyfshrmn View Post
I don't see the practicality in a 2WD tow vehicle unless you never drive in bad weather, or on bad roads. Even if you just park on the wet grass in a KOA, you may need all four pulling to get off of it. If you do any hunting or fishing that involves dirt roads or worse, then 4WD is essential. No one ever deliberately gets stuck, but Murphy's Law is always in effect. Yes, it costs more (returned in higher trade in value), sometimes it cuts your mileage, but the cost figured over the life of the vehicle is not that much more significant, if you keep your vehicle a long time. My average for trucks is about 17 years. Add in the benefits of not having to deal with chains, not getting stuck in places where a tow is $500, and the scale is clearly on the side of 4WD.
Hi

Well, oddly enough I had a chance to check this all out last week.

We pulled up to a campground after Michael had spent the last two day soaking it quite well. I was a bit surprised that all the sites were grass / mud with streams running through them. I checked with management and they said - just pull in, the grass will grow back.

So I gave it a try with the truck in 2WD. In it went and we made a pass at the site. I wasn't to happy with the result and pulled out again.

Next pass I decided that there had not been enough foot deep muddy streams involved so I targeted one of those. Sure enough if I parked in the stream and then tried to move on ... not so much in 2WD. I gave 4WD a try and also no big surprise .. not so much. Drop in in 2WD with the rear axle locked ... on down the path we go. Yes, I did plan it to work that way.

Bottom line, with care there is no absolute need for 4WD. You can navigate through the mud in the pouring rain without it. Operator issues can get you in trouble. The magic involves understanding what you are doing ....

Bob
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Old 10-14-2018, 12:05 PM   #102
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did you use your automatic locking hubs when you shifted to 4wd? If you did and you weren't getting traction, then the hubs might not have locked. Your front wheels have to roll when using automatic hubs or they will not lock and you are still in 2wd. If you are not getting enough traction on the rear wheels to roll the truck a couple feet, the front hubs will not lock.
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Old 10-14-2018, 06:36 PM   #103
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It was real nice today by Kenora Ontario with a lot of slush and snow on the road going through the Canadian Shield to pop it into 4 wheel drive.

With our new Airstream in tow it definitely made me feel a little more comfortable in those conditions and I am very used to driving in snow and towing large snowmobile trailers. As soon as we were on semi dry pavement I switched it back to 2 wheels.
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Old 10-15-2018, 07:22 AM   #104
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyfshrmn View Post
did you use your automatic locking hubs when you shifted to 4wd? If you did and you weren't getting traction, then the hubs might not have locked. Your front wheels have to roll when using automatic hubs or they will not lock and you are still in 2wd. If you are not getting enough traction on the rear wheels to roll the truck a couple feet, the front hubs will not lock.
Hi

There is a "shift to neutral" process involved in getting in and out of various modes. The magic "clunk" is a pretty good clue that the shift actually happened. That said, indeed you can *think* you are in 4 wheel high when indeed that's not (yet) the case. It never hurts to give it a bit of roll room when you shift.

The other subtle clue on the 4x4 test was the wife watching (while standing out in the pouring rain ...) and asking why the front wheel was spinning .....

Bob
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Old 10-17-2018, 09:43 AM   #105
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A 4WD pickup is an increased safety-risk in every single mile of operation (as is any straight-axle vehicle where FAR better alternatives exist). Bottom of the barrel choice.

As independent front suspension with rack & pinion steering are the brand/model elimination factors, pay attention to having them. But increased COG and improper highway tires still won’t overcome design deficiencies.

I’ll bet I’m off in the dirt more often than nearly all of you while towing. The trailer weighs three times as much as the tow vehicle. Do I “miss” 4WD? Ha!

A tow vehicle less stable than the trailer it tows reverses priorities. Ability in steering & handling are what matter (as do trailer anti-lock disc brakes). Basic physics. Not advertising copy. Insisting on a TV that is MORE likely to initiate a loss-of-control accident than the TT surpasses understanding.

Good luck with believing “skill” overcoming statistical verity. That’s the Teenagers + Alcohol + Firearms scenario. Takes but once. No second chance. No rewind & replay.

Test yourself: dislike being called stupid? Where being offended has priority over warnings about life-changing or -ending behaviors? Welcome to your self-created Third World.

I’ve posted repeatedly about how badly magical one-tons are hitched. Something anyone can see at 70-mph from the opposite direction. A BASIC failure. Yet it’s the default behavior. Should I also post about the bad driving? Vid from the dash cam?

There isn’t any such thing as ENOUGH rig stability.

Pay attention to that and the rest follows.



.
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Old 10-17-2018, 10:58 PM   #106
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I'm not sure I understand the point of your post. A 4wd rig might handle with more difficulty, though I tend to disagree. And I probably have more experience driving a 4wd vehicle than 99.999% of the forum members. And given a choice, in bad traction situations, with or without a load in tow, I will take the 4wd any time. If you are in a bad traction situation, you are much more likely to be able to handle it with 4wd engaged. that's why you have it, to provide traction and safety in those situations. Certainly, a good driver with a 2wd might handle them well, but Murphy is always lurking in the weeds. I believe just the opposite of your first line. having a solid front axle has little if anything to do with handling a large vehicle. If you are referring to driving your way out of a sudden traffic situation, I doubt that for most drivers, it makes any difference whatsoever. You are still driving a large, cumbersome vehicle and if things are moving at an emergency pace, the only things that matter are your reaction time, judgement, and ability to handle the vehicle. As for using a vehicle with independent suspension on all four, there are very few of them capable of safely and efficiently pulling a large trailer. Skilled drivers tend to not get into situations where the factors you cite are of high importance, especially when towing.
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Old 10-19-2018, 08:33 AM   #107
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Hi

Simply put - a tow vehicle that is capable of pulling an AS does not have to be large and cumbersome. Indeed it may take some customization to get from a stock this or that to a fully set up tow. That's what keep various outfits in business doing that kind of work.

Making what is already a cumbersome vehicle even more cumbersome is heading in the wrong direction. If one *could* nudge the designers of these trucks it would not be in the direction of less stability. That's just common sense. Getting them higher off the ground and softening the suspension is *not* what you are after. If you could work some magic on a 4WD front axle, you would do it.

Large and cumbersome tow (high off the ground, compromised suspension ...) + large trailer will always be worse for stability than a less cumbersome tow (low to the ground, good suspension, same or better power and brakes) and the same trailer. No that's not the whole story. There is more to stability than any single factor. You can never just work along one axis on any problem.

Without all the drama, that's pretty much the point. Indeed I drive a 4WD, but I'd rather it was done a bit differently. Given what's on the market, I drive what I can buy rather than what I'd prefer to drive. Yes I could get into modifying this and that .... maybe I will.

Bob
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Old 10-20-2018, 03:42 PM   #108
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Many who do not regularly use 4x4 find the discussion confusing.

I drive our 4x4 most of the time as a two wheel drive F350. When off concrete or asphalt pavements... 4x2 and when I see it needed... 4x4. It is experience of towing and not towing on unpaved roads.

With the Airstream in tow on unpaved roads... it is a judgment call from experience. No magazine or book will explain to you when you should be going into 4x4. You just do it from previous experiences.

Not losing momentum traveling over an unexpected soft section of road is more important than tires or having 4x4.

Wheels spinning in mud fill the tire treads and you have little traction. Cut some brush to put into the rut, or something to add traction to a bad situation. Use your imagination. It is not in your vehicle's manual.

If you have your 4x4 engaged on pavement, you can create great stress if you make tight turns. Worse if you have your 4x4 in LOCKED HUB or low 4x4. You will understand if you make a tight turn on pavement with 4x4 engaged. The front end will 'hop' and your U Joints, differential or transmission could be compromised.

Having a 4x4 is like having liability and comprehensive insurance. You are required to have liability insurance (2x2) but not 'full' or comprehensive (4x4) insurance.

A Front Wheel Drive automobile has more weight on the tires and is better than a pickup with rear wheel traction and less weight, compared to the front of the pickup.

When your traction rear wheel is digging a hole in the grass turf, sand or muddy rut... you are without comprehensive insurance. It is a choice. Many will never need 4x4.

When you see a 4x4 with a front cable Winch... it is not by mistake. It is usually to pull a 2 wheel drive out of a situation they found themselves unable to move forward or backward.

Ranchers understand. Drivers from the City do not.

There is a compromise... a Full Time All Wheel Drive that is designed for the City Driver, but available on pavement, snow or off road. It is designed to operate on pavement or off pavement. Limited Slip.

Much like a farm tractor getting stuck in a ditch. If it cannot get out by itself... you are in a world of hurt and have to either start digging... or wait until it dries solid... and then dig.
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Old 10-21-2018, 08:12 AM   #109
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Hi

I've run into a lot of farmers and ranchers who run 2WD vehicles out in the field.....This conversation (4WD vs 2WD) is not just something RV people get into. I've had some pretty long discussions about it with some of them.

Bob
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Old 10-21-2018, 12:30 PM   #110
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We're talking about it now.

The consensus is 4WD. Better to have it than not, for those unexpected situations.

Just like we buy vehicles with extra hp, extra capacity, extra capability, extra durability, etc. Buying a new vehicle with extra traction facilities is sound reasoning.
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Old 10-22-2018, 10:05 PM   #111
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2 wheel drive would be special order in Montana....don’t have much use for one here...
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