R51 bad off-road capabilities?

General off-roading discussions...what's in your trail kit?

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rawand
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Appreciation

Postby rawand » Wed Nov 21, 2018 12:27 am

I really like what you have shared.


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Graham W
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Postby Graham W » Wed Jan 16, 2019 6:41 am

Ive Goodyear M&S tyres, not new but reasonable tread left.

Got caught out on a grassy/muddy bend next to a large soak-away ( which freaked out my gf as she thought we were gonna slide in )

I stopped and allowed some settling, a gentle rock back and forth and some steering wiggling and off we went, not missing a beat.

Ego did take over as the brother in law did say, chunkier tyres would be better and did i want him to go up the local farm and get a tractor to pull us out !!!!

Wasn't going to happen on my watch lmao.

Overall im happy with the capabilities for my needs, and deep snow last year on semi bald tyres meant all those summer whining soft tops ( moan 4x4 taking all the parking up, gas guzlers, chelsea tractors, smokey diesels ) kept asking if id help tow them out of trouble :shock:

k2sb2003
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Re: Traction

Postby k2sb2003 » Thu Sep 01, 2022 4:49 pm

Hawairish wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:25 am
I didn't see anyone mention the obvious, but gears and lockers are the best traction improvements you can do.

With an open diff, as soon as one tire to lose traction, you're stuck. And when that happens, your vehicle then asks one tire on the other axle to do all the work...with a very high probability that tire will become stuck, too. Not sure how good/bad the VDC is, and whether it provides any improvement to a stuck situation (by applying braking to the spinning wheel to transfer torque to the opposite wheel), but there's really no replacement for mechanical traction. Even a limited-slip is an improvement (if you have one), but as the name implies, it will permit slipping...and Nissan has dumbed them down since the 02 truck/SUV line-up.

There are locking options available for the R51. There's a group buy going on right now, btw (expires in about 10 days?) for a Lokka for the front axle of your vehicle (R180) for $250, which is a great deal (use Path15 at Lokka.com, expires soon, use website to confirm fitment). ARB also has front and rear air lockers...not cheap, but very effective.

Gearing is the other factor. When you've increased tire size, you've decreased gearing efficiency for off-roading. Gearing options are limited, unfortunately, but if there are any, it'll require a decent amount of research...no one's making gears specifically for the R51, but the axles it uses have been used in numerous other vehicles for generations and are relatively unchanged.

The semi-obvious caveat to the discussion is the terrain you're on. If you are on very muddy, slippery terrain, even lockers and gears won't be your answer unless you have the right tires. DuraTracs are good, but still might not have the lugging you require on wet/soft terrains (I have DuraTracs, too). A mud-terrain tire would offer more traction in, well...muddy terrain....but really any terrain where it's necessary to claw into it vs. crawl over it. Airing down, as previously suggested, is also a good way to increase your contact patch for any tire.

Lastly, if being stuck in general is a concern, be sure to pack appropriately. Tracks and a come-along can come in handy, with a winch being the best overall option.

k2sb2003
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Re: Traction

Postby k2sb2003 » Thu Sep 01, 2022 4:49 pm

Hawairish wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:25 am
I didn't see anyone mention the obvious, but gears and lockers are the best traction improvements you can do.

With an open diff, as soon as one tire to lose traction, you're stuck. And when that happens, your vehicle then asks one tire on the other axle to do all the work...with a very high probability that tire will become stuck, too. Not sure how good/bad the VDC is, and whether it provides any improvement to a stuck situation (by applying braking to the spinning wheel to transfer torque to the opposite wheel), but there's really no replacement for mechanical traction. Even a limited-slip is an improvement (if you have one), but as the name implies, it will permit slipping...and Nissan has dumbed them down since the 02 truck/SUV line-up.

There are locking options available for the R51. There's a group buy going on right now, btw (expires in about 10 days?) for a Lokka for the front axle of your vehicle (R180) for $250, which is a great deal (use Path15 at Lokka.com, expires soon, use website to confirm fitment). ARB also has front and rear air lockers...not cheap, but very effective.

Gearing is the other factor. When you've increased tire size, you've decreased gearing efficiency for off-roading. Gearing options are limited, unfortunately, but if there are any, it'll require a decent amount of research...no one's making gears specifically for the R51, but the axles it uses have been used in numerous other vehicles for generations and are relatively unchanged.

The semi-obvious caveat to the discussion is the terrain you're on. If you are on very muddy, slippery terrain, even lockers and gears won't be your answer unless you have the right tires. DuraTracs are good, but still might not have the lugging you require on wet/soft terrains (I have DuraTracs, too). A mud-terrain tire would offer more traction in, well...muddy terrain....but really any terrain where it's necessary to claw into it vs. crawl over it. Airing down, as previously suggested, is also a good way to increase your contact patch for any tire.

Lastly, if being stuck in general is a concern, be sure to pack appropriately. Tracks and a come-along can come in handy, with a winch being the best overall option.
The VDC has ABLS incorporated into the system as an advanced traction control system that is very effective. I have some examples on my Youtube page.

The Lockers are def. the way to go if you can get them. The problem we have in the USA is that we received the V6 with the R200 (no locker options from ARB) rear differential or the V8 has the R230 with the 2.91 (no ARB locker options). You can upgrade the Pathy to the R230 3.36 but then you have to do some machining to the ring gear to get the ARB Air Locker to work. Only the front has an actual solution and it's recommended that you upgrade the front differential to the M205 with the V8 Pathfinder axle shafts with the ARB locker. THe Lokka is cool for what it is, the problem is the R200 is not a happy camper with additional stress. There are many reported cases of blown R180s with no traction devices.

Recently, TRE has made an Air and Electronic locker for the R230 with the 3.36 and down differential so those with the V8 or upgraded V6 can go that route.

The ideal situation is to import a used R230 with the 3.69 used in the 2.5YTTD Pathfinders with a Manual transmission. They are pretty cheap, it's just hard to get one shipped here. They are a cast iron design, so stronger and they have a much more readily available parts bin for the aftermarket.

ABLS Example https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kPeas8e ... Adventures
ABLS Example 2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MsFzO07 ... Adventures

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Re: R51 bad off-road capabilities?

Postby palmerwmd » Thu Sep 01, 2022 6:04 pm

Thank you Sir for enriching this valuable thread! :D


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