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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
A forum member recently sent me his old Rubicon e-locker.
Here is a quote from the owner:
"...when wheeling in tough areas (sand, mud, rocks &tc.) I put the locker in for a while & then take it out, put the locker in for a while & then take it out, repeat. So, I've used it a lot. My Jeep has 105K miles & I'll bet 15-18K of that is off road."

It has seen some good use. The differential and dog clutch show very little wear.
edit, (thanks to jrider): The ring in the 3rd picture below looks quite worn, leaving a small lip at the inner diameter.
That could be the cause of locker ratcheting.
Installing a shim to make up the difference has at least temporarily fixed it in some cases.

Here is a look at how the Rubicon e-locker works.




























See this great video to review how a regular differential works:
 

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Great info, thanks:beer:
 

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I'm curious to see a picture of the engagement ring on a low mileage locker. This one looks very much like mine (with 75k and lots of time locked) where the outer ring looks like it is worn down about 3 mm from the inner. I really think that this what is causing locker failures in many of the JKs. The actuator solenoid and ring is stationary while the actuator plate it pushes against spins with the rest of the diff. It is a metal to metal contact of a spinning part and a stationary part causing the wear. That explains the failures and why shimming works to correct it.

Edit: Sorry for the hard to read red type, copied it from another thread I did awhile back.

Edit2: After looking at both pics in the same thread, the one above looks like it is actually worn down further than mine. Also, look at how far the ring comes out past the inner sleeve on mine (after filing the mushroomed ridge) compared to being flush with the other one.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'm curious to see a picture of the engagement ring on a low mileage locker. This one looks very much like mine (with 75k and lots of time locked) where the outer ring looks like it is worn down about 3 mm from the inner. I really think that this what is causing locker failures in many of the JKs. The actuator solenoid and ring is stationary while the actuator plate it pushes against spins with the rest of the diff. It is a metal to metal contact of a spinning part and a stationary part causing the wear. That explains the failures and why shimming works to correct it.

Edit: Sorry for the hard to read red type, copied it from another thread I did awhile back.

Edit2: After looking at both pics in the same thread, the one above looks like it is actually worn down further than mine. Also, look at how far the ring comes out past the inner sleeve on mine (after filing the mushroomed ridge) compared to being flush with the other one.
I initially thought the same thing.
I changed my mind after closer examination

I noticed on the plate, there is no wear mark where it makes contact with the ring, indicating to me they rotate together. (The ring is free to rotate.)
Also, I think the ring reaches its max travel, and the dog clutch is pulled farther in from the design of the tapered legs. The plate may not be touching the ring when fully engaged.
The ring may in fact be worn. We won't know until we can examine a very low mileage one.

Here is a picture of the plate where it contacts the ring. There is no wear at all.

 

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Discussion Starter #10
I took a closer look at the ring and plate. The edge of the plate, where it contacts the ring, has a 90° edge.
The ring, where in your photo it says "Is this wear or normal?", has a nice fillet.
I'm almost positive it is machined this way.
 

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I initially thought the same thing.
I changed my mind after closer examination

I noticed on the plate, there is no wear mark where it makes contact with the ring, indicating to me they rotate together. (The ring is free to rotate.)
Also, I think the ring reaches its max travel, and the dog clutch is pulled farther in from the design of the tapered legs. The plate may not be touching the ring when fully engaged.
The ring may in fact be worn. We won't know until we can examine a very low mileage one.

Here is a picture of the plate where it contacts the ring. There is no wear at all.
I was thinking that the plate was a harder steel and that was why the plunger was wearing as opposed to the plate. I do know that the plunger is not really free to spin, if you engage it and try to turn it you'll see what I mean.

Looking at your explanation of the tapered dogs does make sense but that leaves the question of why it would ratchet when under a load. I'm sure you've seen my video of what mine and was doing but here is the link.

http://www.jkowners.com/forum/showthread.php?t=61888

Thinking a little more into it, after the plunger wears, the tapered edges of the dog clutch teeth start to work against the taper of the dog legs and that is what would cause the ratcheting and explain why it is sometimes intermittent. Further, in the absence of a load to hold the dog clutch fully engaged, the plate and plunger are, in fact, in a self destructing metal to metal contact during that time, causing the wear to the plunger.

I think we just figured out problem with the lockers.:thankyou::beer:
 

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I took a closer look at the ring and plate. The edge of the plate, where it contacts the ring, has a 90° edge.
The ring, where in your photo it says "Is this wear or normal?", has a nice fillet.
I'm almost positive it is machined this way.
I think that is due to the fact that there is some movement in the plate.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The system can stand only so much torque. Once that is exceeded and the teeth get rounded off, ratcheting becomes more likely.

We need to see a new ring before it can be determined if the used ring is worn.
 

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The system can stand only so much torque. Once that is exceeded and the teeth get rounded off, ratcheting becomes more likely.

We need to see a new ring before it can be determined if the used ring is worn.
I can tell you that mine underwent several wheelin trips where they were ratcheting severely under a major load, Although it sounded like the whole diff was going to grenade, when I pulled it apart, the teeth looked like the day they were machined. Every cut was crisp and straight. I was very impressed by the quality and durability of those parts of the locker.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I'm now leaning toward the ring in our pictures being worn. I saw a picture of a new one, and it appeared to have a flat surface.

I looked at your video. Your locker was much too easy to make it ratchet.
Did you finally determine what was wrong with it?
 

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I'm now leaning toward the ring in our pictures being worn. I saw a picture of a new one, and it appeared to have a flat surface.

I looked at your video. Your locker was much too easy to make it ratchet.
Did you finally determine what was wrong with it?
I filed down the slight mushrooming at the end of the inner sleeve that the ring slides on which gave it another 2-3mm of travel and then shimmed it the rest of the way to full engagement. It's been over a year and it has worked perfectly with a lot of use.

It did pop out pretty easy working the tire back and forth off the ground but under a load it sounded pretty bad. I think that the angle of the tapers on the dog teeth was steeper than the angle of the dog legs and that is what causes it to slip away as opposed to towards engagement.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I filed down the slight mushrooming at the end of the inner sleeve that the ring slides on which gave it another 2-3mm of travel and then shimmed it the rest of the way to full engagement. It's been over a year and it has worked perfectly with a lot of use.

It did pop out pretty easy working the tire back and forth off the ground but under a load it sounded pretty bad. I think that the angle of the tapers on the dog teeth was steeper than the angle of the dog legs and that is what causes it to slip away as opposed to towards engagement.
I see the angle on the teeth you are talking about. It is very slight on the one I am looking at.

So, with the shimming and filing, yours no longer ratchets?
 

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No ratcheting, locks tight.
 

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locker actuator

the plunger ring is soft material, they get stuck in the mag and wont move in and out or turn freely so it gets worn down by the plate.
 

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the good and the bad.. this happens from the plunger getting stuck, it needs to be able to freely move in the case.




i ground the crimps out of the electromag case to get it apart and swap the plungers since i had a busted one on hand. then used a chisel to recrimp it.




i did find d44 carrier shims can work to replace the worn off material as long as the plunger is free, this one had alot of crap stuck in it. after having a few apart, theres no reason to be afraid of taking them apart to service or grind down for shimming.
 
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