L300 Manual hubs, Auto lock hubs & Fixed hubs: which are which?

Topics may eventually be moved to other Delica Canada forums.

Moderators: BCDelica, mark

User avatar
deskinthewoods
Posts: 74
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:35 am
Member's Photo Album: http://www.delica.ca/Photos/
Vehicle: 1991 L300 Star Wagon named "Wilson"
Location: Wakefield, Québec

L300 Manual hubs, Auto lock hubs & Fixed hubs: which are which?

Postby deskinthewoods » Sat May 26, 2018 6:40 pm

So, I'm new to this wonderful world of Delica and the learning curve is steep and surprises abound. I thought I had Auto locking hubs but just found reference to "Fixed" hubs on a post from the UK. I didn't know there were fixed hubs. I know I definitely do not have manual locking hubs but how can I tell if they are Auto locking or fixed? (this search came about as I thought my Auto lock indicator lamp was burnt out as nothing lights up when I'm in 4H or 4L....maybe I just don't have that indicator lamp?)

User avatar
Growlerbearnz
Posts: 1929
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 1:58 pm
Member's Photo Album: http://www.delica.ca/Photos/
Vehicle: Delica P25W
Location: New Zealand

L300 Manual hubs, Auto lock hubs & Fixed hubs: which are which?

Postby Growlerbearnz » Sat May 26, 2018 9:14 pm

Auto hubs are easy: they say "Auto Free Hub" on the chromed cover, and are what most Delicas have:
1200px-Free_wheeling_hub_4wd.jpg
1200px-Free_wheeling_hub_4wd.jpg (77.31 KiB) Viewed 492 times

Auto hubs are nice because you don't have to get out of the vehicle to engage them. They're more prone to failure because it's the engine's driving force that engages them- if you select 4WD and floor it, they engage quite violently. Rocking the vehicle to get out of sand or mud (selecting 1st then Reverse repeatedly) causes them to disengage momentarily and then re-engage suddenly, and really hammers them.


Fixed hubs are less common, and usually found on the 4WD vans and long wheelbase wagons, but sometimes on wagon models.
FixedHubs.JPG
FixedHubs.JPG (62.94 KiB) Viewed 492 times

Fixed hubs are the most reliable, because there's no mechanism to break. The downside is that turning the front diff when you're in 2WD creates a lot of drag and extra fuel consumption, as well as wearing out the CV joints and diff faster.

And manual locking hubs are usually aftermarket, and have a centre piece you must turn manually to engage the hubs.
Locking.JPG
Locking.JPG (73.4 KiB) Viewed 492 times

Manual hubs are more reliable than auto hubs because you can only engage them by hand when the vehicle is stationary. They can still break, but it's less common. The downside is that oyu can only engage them by hand when the vehicle is stationary, which can be inconvenient if you're up to your door sills in mud or in traffic on an icy hillside (for example).
Nothing says "poor workmanship" more than wrinkles in the duct tape.

User avatar
deskinthewoods
Posts: 74
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:35 am
Member's Photo Album: http://www.delica.ca/Photos/
Vehicle: 1991 L300 Star Wagon named "Wilson"
Location: Wakefield, Québec

L300 Manual hubs, Auto lock hubs & Fixed hubs: which are which?

Postby deskinthewoods » Sun May 27, 2018 4:44 am

And it seems mine are "fixed". Thanks again, Growlerbear. Someday I shall fly down and buy you a beer! :-D

User avatar
deskinthewoods
Posts: 74
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:35 am
Member's Photo Album: http://www.delica.ca/Photos/
Vehicle: 1991 L300 Star Wagon named "Wilson"
Location: Wakefield, Québec

L300 Manual hubs, Auto lock hubs & Fixed hubs: which are which?

Postby deskinthewoods » Sun May 27, 2018 12:31 pm

Can one shift into 4H from 2H on the fly with fixed hubs or do you have to be stopped? Do you have to put in the clutch?

User avatar
Growlerbearnz
Posts: 1929
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 1:58 pm
Member's Photo Album: http://www.delica.ca/Photos/
Vehicle: Delica P25W
Location: New Zealand

L300 Manual hubs, Auto lock hubs & Fixed hubs: which are which?

Postby Growlerbearnz » Sun May 27, 2018 2:26 pm

Just to note: you can install any of the 3 styles of hubs fairly easily, they all use the same driveshafts and mounting points. So if you get bored with your fixed hubs it's easy to install manual ones.

deskinthewoods wrote:Can one shift into 4H from 2H on the fly with fixed hubs or do you have to be stopped? Do you have to put in the clutch?


Yes, with fixed hubs you can shift from 2H to 4H and back without stopping and without using the clutch, though mine sometimes shifts easier if I use the clutch.

And for those following along at home: If you have freewheeling hubs, either Auto or Manual, you can also shift from 2H<->4H while moving if your hubs are already locked.
Nothing says "poor workmanship" more than wrinkles in the duct tape.

User avatar
deskinthewoods
Posts: 74
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:35 am
Member's Photo Album: http://www.delica.ca/Photos/
Vehicle: 1991 L300 Star Wagon named "Wilson"
Location: Wakefield, Québec

L300 Manual hubs, Auto lock hubs & Fixed hubs: which are which?

Postby deskinthewoods » Sun May 27, 2018 2:31 pm

Most awesome news. Two beers...

User avatar
Growlerbearnz
Posts: 1929
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 1:58 pm
Member's Photo Album: http://www.delica.ca/Photos/
Vehicle: Delica P25W
Location: New Zealand

L300 Manual hubs, Auto lock hubs & Fixed hubs: which are which?

Postby Growlerbearnz » Sun May 27, 2018 2:50 pm

...just remember you shouldn't use 4WD on pavement, only on loose/slippery/irregular surfaces where the wheels can easily slip a little.

The front and rear wheels sometimes need to turn at different speeds (like when cornering) but they can't because they're rigidly linked by the transfer case. Instead, the wheels with the least resistance will slip a little. The transfer case has a big chain inside, and it's the chain that distributes the stress between the front and rear wheels- if you're driving on nice, grippy tarmac and the wheels need to slip, the chain has to handle *way* more force than it's supposed to. Best case it'll wear out faster. Worst case, it'll break. (Though I've never come across a broken one. Usually it's a poorly maintained driveshaft U-joint or CV joint that fails).
Nothing says "poor workmanship" more than wrinkles in the duct tape.

User avatar
deskinthewoods
Posts: 74
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:35 am
Member's Photo Album: http://www.delica.ca/Photos/
Vehicle: 1991 L300 Star Wagon named "Wilson"
Location: Wakefield, Québec

L300 Manual hubs, Auto lock hubs & Fixed hubs: which are which?

Postby deskinthewoods » Sun May 27, 2018 2:58 pm

Thanks for that advice, too...


Return to “General Discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 9 guests