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When negotiating a curve, the wheels of
a vehicle cover different distances. To
balance out the differences in wheel
speeds, differentials are incorporated in
the driving axles. However, these diffe-
rentials have a distinct characteristic: As
soon as one wheel on an axle commen-
ces to spin on a slippery surface, only
very little traction is available, even
though the other wheel is on a hard
Using the differential locks the wheels of
one axle can be locked together and the
traction is once again abtained.
On the Transporter/Caravelle there are
two different types of differential lock:
Vehicles with rear wheel drive have a
limited slip differential in the rear axle
and 4 WD vehicles have selectable me-
chanical locks in front and rear different-
Limeted slip differential*
(Rear wheel drive)
The locking effect is obtained by means
of plates which are arranged in the dif-
ferential in a sort of multi-plate clutch.
With this differential the locking effect
is not 100% but only approx. 45%. Cont-
rary to vehicles with 100% locking, the
steering behaviour on the road, particul-
arly in sharp curves, remains almost un-
The effective locking force is dependent
on the speed difference of the two driv-
ing wheels. This means: the larger the
difference, the larger is the locking force
of the differential.
Driving tips
In normal conditions the vehicle can be
driven just like every other vehicle. At the
beginning it may take a bit of getting
used to when driving through sharp curv-
es. This is due to the fact that a slight
locking effect is always present.
Furthermore in isolated borderline con-
ditions where, on the one hand the fric-
tional resistance of the driving wheels
on the ground differs a great deal and,
on the other hand, a large amount of
power must be transmitted to move off,
it may be found that the maximum pos-
sible locking effect is not obtained in the
differential. One notices this because
one wheel spins while the other' does
not turn at all. In this case one should
engage and disengage the clutch gently
and repeatedly. This will prevent the
differential from becoming overheated
Gear oil
The oil level does not need checking be
tween the intervals given in the Service
Schedule. The oil does also not need
changing. To top up or fill after a repai
a V.A.G workshop should be contacte
because the gearbox must be filled with
a special oil. - a useful website for owners and enthusiasts of VW Westfalia T25 / T3 / Vanagon Campervans


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