Aussie Locker installed today....hmmm | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Aussie Locker installed today....hmmm


Well-Known Member
May 5, 2000
Reaction score
City, State
Westmont, Illinois
Year, Model & Trim Level
'93 Ranger
Alright I used to own a '93 ranger with an explorer 8.8 31 spline axle. Put a powertrax noslip in and loved it. Swore that I'd never own a truck without a locking diff in the back again. On tight turns under power you'd feel the tires fight due to traction a bit, but never really heard the noslip sound much at all. Had bigger wider tires on it as well, with a manual transmission and 6 inch lift.
Well I sold it years ago for a 2004 4 door sport track. Love the truck but it was an open diff. Spun a wheel all the time just on wet pavement, etc. Quite frustrating.
Finally got around to buying an Aussie. Had it Installed today. Had problems on install - the thrust washers were way too tight. Couldnt' get the pin in nomatter what. They had to be ground down 12 thousands of an inch to get everything in spec. Hours and hours of service time, cost me a lot. Got it home. Honestly not excited about it at all.
Backing out of the service station spot, it clunked like crazy. Drove it around about 8 miles or so tonight. It's a bit better now, but still clunks quickly on turns and backing up while turning, like backing out of a parking spot.
That NEVER happened with the powertrax noslip. It would occasionally grab on turns, but I never heard/felt the clunking like this. Honestly if it doesn't get better it's coming back out. This is not light ratcheting, it's a heavier lower pitched clunking. Not horrible clunking mind you, but very very noticeable. To the point where I wouldn't feel comfortable having my wife drive it. She drove the ranger all the time.

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Good to hear some experience with this, I'll be adding a locker of sorts to the rear of my explorer.

Thanks for the info, i was just about to order one.

the clunking on the Aussie is completely normal for that type of design because the cam and side gear teeth slide over each other when turning or under light throttle. The powertrax no-slip has a design that holds the cam and side gear parts away from each other under those conditions, so you don't get that sound.

I had the same issue with the tight clearances and trouble getting the pin in. Got some thinner thrust washers and that got it into spec....worked with no issues for the rest of the time I had the vehicle.

The Spartan locker works similarly to the Aussie but there are no thrust washers involved, the installation clearances work better from what I hear, and the pin design is better in my opinion.

I have a brand new Spartan for sale, BTW, if anyone is interested:

As Ronin said, clicking is normal. If your locking a street truck, you might want to spend the extra $$$ for something else otherwise an Aussie will work well for a long time,

I have 45,000 miles on mine including 2 trips to Moab on her own wheels.

To put it simply, it just works.