Differential lockers

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Introduction

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General points

  • Jimny has standard "open" differentials on the front and on the rear axle, and no inter-axle differential (due to part-time 4WD transmission).
  • For serious all-terrain duty, it can be quite beneficial to able to lock the axle differential(s) in order to extort maximum traction from the connected wheels.
  • The general topic of transmission differentials, differential lockers and their application is not the topic of this article.
  • Educate yourself about those topics throughout various corners of the Internet, or in professional books.


Solutions for Jimnys

  • There are several aftermarket-made differential lockers for Jimnys.
    • Example products are:
      1. Lockright;
      2. Kaiser locker;
      3. ARB locker;
      4. etc.


Notes on ARB differential locker

  • It is widely agreed upon that the ARB locker is the most advanced, since it provides uncompromised control options for the driver.
    • This means manual (dis)engagement at will.
    • What is best of all, the ARB differential locker behaves just like a normal open differential when it is not engaged, and locks fully and properly whenever it is engaged.
      • The on-demand (un)locking operation is performed pneumatically, with the supplied ARB air compressor.


  • On the other hand, the ARB differential locker is the most expensive.
  • ARB lockers are relatively difficult to install.
    • The installation requires very good skills to set them properly during installation, in order to avoid improper wear in future use.
    • The installation also requires drilling & taping in air lines, fitting a compressor, running wiring and air lines, and fitting operating mode switches for the user somewhere.
      • Note that all the fittings are imperial / American threads and sizes.
        • In countries where metric sizes and tools are prevalent, this necessities buying the correct imperial sized tools.


  • An added bonus of having an air compressor installation in the vehicle is that it can also be used for inflating road tyres.
  • For vehicles which have ARB differential lockers installed both in the front axle and in the rear axle, the ARB wiring loom defaults so that the rear differential locker must be engaged before the front will work.
    • This can be changed for preference during installation.


Notes on Lockright differential locker

  • Lockright is relatively cheap and relatively simple to install.
  • However, it provides no manual control of its operation.
    • Therefore, it can behave work counter-productively in certain on-road situations.
      • It requires skill and caution when driving to avoid unexpected moments.


Notes on Kaiser differential locker

  • Kaiser locker is also relatively cheap and relatively simple to install, but generally more expensive than Lockright.
    • However, it also provides no manual control of its operation, with similar consequences as with the Lockright.




Page last edited on 21/02/2019 by user Bosanek