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Old 08-12-2009, 11:08 AM   #11
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

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Originally Posted by warholic
No matter which 4x4 system I install, I will put ARB lockers front/rear. I think that makes big difference for off-road capability.
FYI, I have ARB locker on the front-only, and am happy with the setup. I don't miss it on the rear, where I have the Ford limited-slip.

-- Geoff
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Old 08-12-2009, 04:43 PM   #12
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

What Geoffff said... except I have a Dynatrac rear axle.
Bill
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Old 08-12-2009, 06:33 PM   #13
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

I have the 4x4 for the same reasons scatter does. I would not take small children to the places I go.

A lot of people over stress their SMBS in the tough stuff.

I like the Salem/Kroger set up . It uses all ford parts which makes it easier to get fixed.
The front end is much stronger.. (before you yell at me check it out)

Jeff
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Old 08-13-2009, 12:06 AM   #14
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

myriadmyriad - did you or have you dealt with S&K directly? I have heard more negative than positive comments about them re: customer service, communication, slipped schedules. I have only heard positive comments on Quadvan in Portland - quite a few, actually. They use pretty much same approach as S&K and have been around 25 years or so. But S&K very close to me compared to Quadvan in Portland, so S&K was looking good. And my communication with them has been good ....... so far.

In recent past I would just go all SMB 4x4 because of reputation, extreme off-road capability, "one stop shopping", etc.......

I appreciate all the responses I received on this topic.
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Old 08-14-2009, 09:25 AM   #15
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

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Originally Posted by warholic
I have heard more negative than positive comments about them re: customer service, communication, slipped schedules.
I think that deserves a new topic. My impression of S&K is almost solely based on Buji's van.

Incidentially, I would choose based on the quality of the end product... you can plan for slipped schedule and make up for poor communication if you're expecting those things, and it will be easier to mitigate those things if they're closer. But anyway, put a thread out there so it's not buried in this topic and take the results to S&K... see what they have to say.
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Old 08-14-2009, 03:45 PM   #16
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

Honestly, I've never even used the full capability of my VW Vanagon. But, just like the SMB, it does everything I want and need it to do.

Mike
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Old 08-14-2009, 05:33 PM   #17
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

I had a 98 E350 2wd. It had A LOT less traction than my 4x4 van in 2wd. I go many places in 2wd just to see how far I can make it. Then switch to 4wd.

4wd makes a big difference.
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Old 08-14-2009, 09:27 PM   #18
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

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I had a 98 E350 2wd. It had A LOT less traction than my 4x4 van in 2wd.
This sounds perhaps like your '98 didn't have a limited-slip rear axle (and your 4x4 does)?

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Old 08-14-2009, 11:02 PM   #19
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

I ordered my 98 van with a 3.73 limited slip. It had the E4OD transmission, and the V10. It shifted like our old Mercury Commuter station wagon!

I think the 4x4 is much better in 2wd than a 2wd only van because of a combination of things. The firmer front suspension, the weight of the extended van over a regular van, and 4.10 gears with the 5R110 transmission makes it all work so much better. Plus the 2wd van had 245/70 16 Michelin LTX A/S and the 4x4 has 285/70 17 Terra Grapplers. It's really not a fair comparison now that I look at it.
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Old 08-14-2009, 11:21 PM   #20
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Re: How many REALLY use the full capability of the SMB 4x4?

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It had the E4OD transmission
My 2004 still has the E40D. The 5R110 was a diesel-only option back in 2004. I did test drive a diesel, and the 5R110 was a much nicer transmission.

Can't say I know how it would help with traction, though.

-- Geoff
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