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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone, i have a handling issue with my 2.5l YJ when it is slippery. The rear end just pushes me forward, even in 4WD, and the steering wheel is then useless. Very often on slippery forest roads (thin layer of mud) i just cannot steer at all. I see these deep ruts where you dont want to fall in, but the rear end pushes me there. I have the feeling that 4WD is not working and I have a rear wheel drive car. So at home i checked that 4WD is fine. Any help is appreciated. Btw i have 31" bfg AT KO tires. Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
no they are not locked. I have an ARB in the rear and check if it is functioning very often. Deffinitely no issues there. This is a general thing since many years. Today i had two buddies in the jeep, they suggested that the front diff gearing is higher...so bad was the handling. I have the feeling that the front axle is not pulling, only the rear pushes. hm...
 

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Different gears in the front would not affect driving in 2 wheel drive, only in 4 wheel drive and if different would bind the drive train. You can check the front operation by pulling the rear driveshaft and driving it.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yes i will have somd free time to do this next week. Today I just jacked up front left, turned the wheel per hand in 2wd, then in 4hi and 4low. It does what it should. Same on the right then. Seems to be ok.
 

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......just out of curiosity- what are the varying tire conditions?
In this day and age of "smart" phones next trail ride get a buddy to get out and record your approach, see if the fronts are truly turning and not grabbing or if they aren't fully engaged.
 

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Ok, the deep ruts are very hard to stay out of first off, and then the tires you have are not a very aggressive Mud Tires, a great All Terrain Tire. check out your gear ratios for sure, but it may be that the fronts are just getting full of mud and not letting you turn. My tires are a lot more Nobby than yours and it's still very hard to stay out of someones ruts.
You may have to spin them to clean them out before they will bite, I don't like doing that because when they do bite on a root or big rock is when you tear up stuff.
 

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Another thing to check would be your toe and caster settings, Check your brakes for dragging if all else is ok.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
thanks for the answers everybody! After another day out in the forest, i think its the tires that cant do well in slippery conditions. The front wheels do throw mud when they are engaged. Maybee my driving is for mud tires.
 

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if your locker is engaged it will tend to push the Jeep straight. I have seen a long box dually push straight on dry asphalt with an electric locker in it. After watching the video it all seemed pretty normal. If you want to get out of the ruts SLOW DOWN and crawl out of them.
 

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Agree with the tires, I have 33x12.5 KOs, pretty close to useless when it gets slick out here.
Looks like you're in very similar terrain with loamy soil/dirt over sand over clay (glacial till) that I have here. If I can get to the sand I'm fine, but in the thin mud I'm all over the place.

The KOs are great everywhere here except after a heavy rain or when it's icy. They do follow ruts and on side hills they like to slip towards the bottom. Odd thing is that they don't do too bad in deeper mud.

If you get different tires, post how they work out!
 

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no they are not locked. I have an ARB in the rear and check if it is functioning very often. Deffinitely no issues there. This is a general thing since many years. Today i had two buddies in the jeep, they suggested that the front diff gearing is higher...so bad was the handling. I have the feeling that the front axle is not pulling, only the rear pushes. hm...
Might double check because it sure seems that the rear axles are locked??
 

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Just an outside chance, are your front brakes dragging?

Let us know what ends up working for you.

Good Luck, L.M.
 

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All tire and and some driving inexperience. Those ruts are pretty deep especially for 31's. Throw them AT's in the mix and you may as well sit back for the ride because those ruts just became roller coaster tracks for you. That why you can see in the video sometimes it looks like the steering wheel almost gets snatched from your grip from sudden deflection in the rut.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
great posts guys, thanks! Well I will definitely try to slow down next time. MTs are on the wish list. However i plan to go bigger but stay skinny-33/10.5/15- and this is a huge step for my rig, so i dont know when i will be driving new MTs. The rear axle is not locked. I know how it feels on the street if locked.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Just an outside chance, are your front brakes dragging?

Let us know what ends up working for you.

Good Luck, L.M.
Maybe they drag a bit. As i jacked up the front end yesterday i could feel the tires a bit heavy to rotate. But both tires felt equal heavy.
 

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All tire and and some driving inexperience. Those ruts are pretty deep especially for 31's. Throw them AT's in the mix and you may as well sit back for the ride because those ruts just became roller coaster tracks for you. That why you can see in the video sometimes it looks like the steering wheel almost gets snatched from your grip from sudden deflection in the rut.
THIS^ except I'd say more lack of experience and less of a tire issue... I can't count the number of times I've driven someone else's rig through something they were convinced was impossible.... Once they see it with their own eyes, suddenly they get very interested in learning.

You should be picking your lines to avoid ruts whenever possible.... falling into the ruts is the first step to getting stuck.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I cannot avoid ruts if i am not in charge for the steering but the jeep,?. Its a Jeep thing, the driver wouldnt understand?
I am happy to hear that my inexperience is the key, cause after all this can be fixed.
 

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Looks to me like a tire issue. When the tread gets full then it will just slide along the ground instead of providing traction. Add in the short wheelbase and anything that can go wrong gets accelerated quickly before you can provide any driver input. As posted, slow down and get some tires for the type of terrain you drive on most often. Which in your case sounds like you need a decent MT tire that can clean the tread out very quickly. Good luck on your project.
 
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