How to drive in 4 wheel drive.

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My 1988 chevy 1/2 ton 4X4 305 is my first 4wd vehicle and I'm a little fuzzy about when to use 4wd and how to shift.
I read the thread about "4 wheel drive info needed" but I don't know how
much of that applies to my truck since I don't have "shift button".
I can usually get it into and out of 4h or 4l, but my main question is when to use 4wd. I bought it from a high shool kid who said that you should never use 4wd on dry pavement (maybe not even wet pavement). I can see why because when I try to turn very sharply on dry pavement I get this "hopping" effect, like the differential in front isn't working (if there is one there). Is this rule correct?
I'm in the Seattle area where we have some snow now. The residential streets are snowy and icey, but the bigger the street, the more likely it is to be clear. Some streets are bare in places and icey in places, making it impossible to only use 4wd on the icey patches. When should I shift? Does it damage the 4wd to shift in and out too much or to shift on the fly? How much should I slow down to shift into 4wd, or should I slow down at all? Is there a web site?
Thanks for your input!!!
Dan
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Just slap her in 4Hi and drive like a maniac...
Sorry, but that's what most people around here do. =-)
I only use mine in deep snow or during very slippery conditions.
In fact, after tossing my stock firestones and using grippy snow tires, I rarely use 4 wheel drive anymore. Unless your tires are bad you probably don't need to use 4WD very much.
Remember that you may take off faster but you still can't stop. And keep some sand bags in the bed.
Cheers,

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A good rule of thumb is, if the road isn't white (snow) or shiny (icy) leave it in 2wd. all you're going to to is wear the hell out of your tires and drive train. When you turn sharply in 4wd you are torquing your axles and drive shafts until the point that your tires break loose from the pavement. this imparts massive wear on your front axle and can cause the CV joints to fail.

only use 4wd when you need it, if you can get going fine in 2wd you don't need 4wd. I rarely ever actually have to shift into 4wd on the road (I live in Maine, which has a far less mild climate than Seattle). only going up big hills or backing out of my parent's driveway. I used to have to put it in 4wd all the time until I got some BFG AT K/O's this summer..... those tires rock!

when your foot is off the gas.

nope, the NP241 xfer case (which you have) is designed for shift on the fly.

all you need to do is let off the gas and be going a reasonable speed (under 20mph). don't yank the lever while the back wheels are spinning... all you'll hear is a very loud bang and something will have broken. (been there, done that.... learned and never did it again.)

probably
HTH, Bret
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Don't forget the T-case!
It's called "crow hopping"
You do have a diff infront and in back, but not in the t-case. Think of the front & rear drive shafts like the half shafts of a differential, but the T-Case is like a locker....
~KJ~
wrote:

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you're more likely to break a driveshaft u-joint than break the chain, the 241 is a pretty strong unit. back when I was hanging out at the local tranny shop (ah the things you do when you have time.....) I sae a Jeep NP231J laying on the floor with 6 windows in the case caused by the chain breaking... one of the guys said the girl who owned it drove it for a month like that.

some people call it that, I prefer "driveline windup"

more like a spool, an auto locker would let the front shaft overrun the rear shaft.
-Bret

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RE/

My vote goes with those who say "only when you need it".
Besides, it's more fun to try to get along with 2wd...and when you finally do get stuck, it's such a treat to just plop it in 4wd and ease away...
--
PeteCresswell

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It also means that if you get stuck, you CAN ease away in 4wd, if you're tooling along in 4wd and get stuck, you better be near help...
rhys
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That reminds me of a funny one last winter...saw some dude in a 4WD explorer passing people who driving slowly during an ice storm, spin out and end up in the ditch.
The funny part was that he straddled the ditch - front bumper on one side, rear bumper on the other, all four wheels spinning freely in the air!
Cheers,

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you don't know the meaning of stuck till you find yourself there, in a place somewhere far far away in 4WD and it doesn't help
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On Wed, 7 Jan 2004 07:55:11 -0800 (PST), snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (ken) wrote:

stuck is when your framerails are sitting on the ground.... been there, done that.
-Bret
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This is a common problem with Explorers, there is actually a recal on it. You should tell anyone you see in the future to visit this link for the recal:
http://www.ford.com/4x4/or/4x2/still4x4.brakes
The most common root cause is the loose nut behind the wheel.
-The Lonely Grease Monkey 1985' K5 305CUI TH700R4 NP208 KJ's successor
"Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, then he who believes what is a wrong." - Thomas Jefferson
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It's harder to look cool and power slide around the corners in 4x4, but pretty bad ass if you can (looks cooler with snow flying from all 4 wheels).
To the OP. Go to a BIG parking lot that hasn't been plowed (during the snow storm is best, few people and the plow covers up the evidence) and tool around in 4x4, 4x2. Lock up the brakes, pull the e-brake. Gets the urge out, teaches you about your truck, fun as hell. I do this at least 5 times an hour during a snow storm to keep my edjucation up-to-date.
-The Lonely Grease Monkey 1985' K5 305CUI TH700R4 NP208 KJ's successor
"Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, then he who believes what is a wrong." - Thomas Jefferson
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RE/

... But where the snow is shallow enough that you can see obstacles that you wouldn't want to hit broadside when sliding...
Ask me how I know that....-)
--
PeteCresswell

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that's what's bad about fields...
can anyone say "stump"
~KJ~
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The world looks different when it's spinnin' by sideways. Best to do this alone......to avoid screaming passengers (unless they're loaded too)
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or its the other half

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COW...
rhys
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Ah, it takes me back. Used to do that in snow in the Fairgrounds parking lot. Was fun to drive on the slippy stuff, lock the wheels, shift into reverse and flatten the pedal. Car would just spin and spin!
All of which reminds me (and this is sorta off topic), but one of my fonder memories was that time sitting in front of the Ritz Barbeque in the Allentown, Pa., Fairgrounds one night -- as we often did in the '50s; it was our hangout -- and watching ....
Well, my buddies and I watched as one of the local jerks tried to impress his girl by driving in faster and faster and ever-widening circles in that huge fairgrounds parking lot behind us.
He was having just a wonderful time, around and around -- until he came to a loud and shockingly abrupt stop against a telephone pole! I don't think anyone was seriously hurt, but his new '53 Oldsmobile and his ego sure were! We loved it!
Marshall
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wrote:

I've been looking for a place to take my daughter so she can get a taste of "you're broken loose and there's not a damn thing you can do but hang on", before she gets it on the road. And the turkeys that build the parking lots keep putting light pole in 'em! Somewhere out there there's a big open space...

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My sister in law learned how to drive in a old Chevy farm truck, in a big open field and many acres with just one tree out in the middle of it. Yep she ran into the tree straight on.
wrote:

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