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  1. #1
    8,000rpm (B Series Redline!) lotusboy's Avatar
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    Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    Just wondering if anyone has experience with running a plate type lsd in a road car?

    Not sure if this would be a good mod or not for a primarily road driven car. Don't have a lot of info about the diff, but I assume its 2way? How can you tell?

    Also any experience running plate lsd with the addition of boost. Worried that I'll break the diff too easy, and waste a hella rare old part.

    Cheers!
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  2. #2
    11,000rpm (Spoon B16B!!) Gudgen's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    Front wheel drives will have a max of 1.5 way. It is a challenge to drive around town with. Boost would be no problem with a plate diff. The clunk clunk around roundabouts is quite concerning for the general public.

  3. #3
    6,000rpm (Max Torque) paddy's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    if its a good diff you can adjust it's tension
    ive had two cars i drove on the road that had plate diffs in it

    you can do it but i guess the quesiton is why if it's not for the track? cause if you have a half decent one it'll probbaly be 30 or 40 degree ramping in it so you'd have to be pretty hard at it to have it working - might be more of a pest than it's worth?

    although lots of people bounce around the roads in hard suspension i guess

    and just cause it's fwd setup doesnt mean it's only 1.5 way. you can get 2 way for them but they're pretty hard core - i know how they feel but dont know how you test it in the garage - perhaps they have another plate in there for pulling the other way? i the one i drove was in a gtir and it was heaps louder

    but roughly put the diff is going to pull back on you when you decelerate - rather than just pulling in on power - sorry if that's a funny way to put it

    but im pretty sure mugen make a 2 way - im almost certain i've seen them on yahoo auctions. would put money on kaaz and cusco doing them as well, guess probably ats. need i go on

  4. #4
    11,000rpm (Spoon B16B!!) Gudgen's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    A 2 way LSD is pretty much a full locker, which is not used on steering axles. RWD and the rear wheels of 4WD can be 2 way and FWD and the front wheels of 4WD are 1.5 way. Otherwise on deceleration the front wheels will lock and you will steer straight into the armco or whatever.

    The "way" refers to the ramp shape inside the unit. I don't know of any way to test it with it install though.

  5. #5
    Exclusive Member Ebola_One's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    I've run one for the last 5+ years, it's an ATS 16 plate metal diff.
    I decided to get this diff after driving Gudgen's EF9 that had a 20 plate ATS diff which I think had the preload wound up a little(?).

    Looking back I'd probably have seriously thought twice about it for two reasons;
    1) I've had no end of wof issues (I go to vtnz) especially at my local one because at the end of the testing lane they do a hard right hand turn to come back down the side of the testing building - the worset condition to put the diff under! I fixed this by choosing a vtnz that has a straight in straight out setup and have had no issues since. Yes if you used a normal garage/mechanic you could probably avoid this because you'll build a relationship with the people doing the wof, so they'll expect the car to clunk around like mad at low speed. The diff + combined removal of power steering caused me to require a cert, though I suspect the diff would have caused this regardless.

    2) It's a right pain in the ass during any driving where you're not accelerating out of corners, even slightly accelerating, and pushing in the clutch is just as painful (it still chatters a little but because the diff's not loaded up and being influenced by the engine etc it's a little more calm, I think this is where the x.5way comes in)

    I really don't know which way I'd go if I were to do it again, if the car sees any track work I'd want the plate diff (because it really makes happy pants at the track) and that alone has probably allowed me to tolerate the on-road pain. But if the car was a daily I'd probably choose something else and sacrifice the better traction.
    I've never tried a friction modifier because I can't be bothered draining the gearbox oil every time I switch car's duties (ie; track duty -> daily duty) however I don't regularily drive the car on the street anyway so I just put up with it as is.

    I have limited engineering knwledge, but I don't see how upping the power through the diff would cause it to explode or fall apart, at worst I'd expect premature wear of the friction surfaces, it's a fairly simply designed thing and solidly constructed from what I remember.
    There used to be a USA ATS site that had a diagram how the diff was put together and explained the 1/1.5/2 way differences, looks like ats-usa.com has gone though.
    Ah here you go:


    As one wheel slips the round thing in the middle forces the cups outwards which presses the friction surfaces together on the wheel that's not slipping. If my memory serves this is a 1.5way, a 2 way has a more symetrial/diamond shaped hole for the round thing so it doesn't matter which wheel is slipping it'll lock up.

    Happy to be corrected if this is all BS. I'm running off a memory that's over 5 years old when I was looking into my diff options.

    To summarize, on the road you'll hate it, on the track you'll love it. Which do you want to enjoy more?

    Edit: Picture was taken from here: LSD rebuild question - Rennlist Discussion Forums
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  6. #6
    Team NZH: Committee tysonzane's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    Do you have any pics Matt? You can see what 'way' it is by looking at the pinion shaft (sometimes 4 or 2 prong) and then the coupler around it. If it looks like a perfectly symetrical diamond then thats a 2 way. If its flat on one side and has a 90* angle on the other then its a 1 way. If its 90* on one side and rounded or a bigger on the otherside its a 1.5 way. Hope that makes sense . Pics will clarify that .


    I can also confirm that FWD's are available in 2 way, I've got one .

    People always think that the a 2 way is the most "aggressive" and the 1 way is the least. This isn't true, there is far more to it then just simply the diffs 'way', its all about the preloading of the plates, plate type, ramp angles and pressure type (spring or elthical washer etc). I can confirm that my 1.5 way diff was far more aggressive then the 2 way, this is because I had it rebuilt and specifically setup to provide maximum lock from anything above idle speed.

    The statement about 2 ways providing lock under decceleration is correct however this doesn't mean you will suddenly unsteer off. I have driven a fwd with a locked diff (well a smashed diff that locked itself) and it is nothing like driving a 2 way diff. Yes there is plate pressure under decel but this doesn't lock the driveline 100%, the plates are designed to slip. The 2 way and even 1.5 ways feel awesome under decel, the car stays planted and you feel the steering feel much more direct - unlike the 1 way which starts to wonder when you lift off. Braking deep into a corner with a 2 way or 1.5 way feels great, even with nasty bumps!

    As for your original question Matt, it certainly is more rugged and I've run a plate diff off and on for a couple of years as a daily driver. At first the diff was fine and very rarely made any noises so that side of things was fine. They do however grab in funny ways as you turn corners and accelerate and i've noticed that they can snatch the torque to the wheels a bit more aggressively as you pull out of drive ways on uneven ground (hard to explain). Once my diff was rebuilt though it did become quite a prick to drive since it was setup for maximum lock, it made super loud clicking and banging noises on pretty much every turn bellow 50kph particularly when cold. You can also feel the axles starting to bind quite a bit. It got to the point where on slow 90* corners like at intersections you'd either have to go really slowly and occasionally clutch it to take pressure off the system or just put your foot down more then usual to let the diff start to bite and work how its supposed to. The noise it made is pretty embarassing around people that dont understand too.

    I guess what you can take from this is its all about how the diff is set up. Steele gears in Otahuhu are absolute LSD experts and only specialise in diffs so would be the perfect people to take it to, to get it setup how you'd like it. Mind you Andrew would also be more then up to the task too.

    The best thing about the diff is in the corners though, they just hang on and pull you around like you wont believe - awesome addition if you hit the twisties or the track quite hard.

    As for strength, the only thing that kills them is shock loads and they dont handle them too well. The sheer power output is fine but its the shock load that kills them. Mine died from far too higher RPM launch at the drags with super sticky tyres on a super sticky track and ZERO wheel spin - something had to give and the spider gears smashed to pieces! The same has happened for a few people rallying, mainly on the tarmac when you either jump the car or ditch hook it and the tyres spin up momentarly and then get instant traction again.

    When I replaced my spider gears I got my internals cryor frozen which is supposed to increase the shock load strength dramatically. So much so, Steele gears haven't had a plate diff back after a proper rebuild and cyror frozen internals! Mine has held up so far so here is hoping! The next part which then starts to break is you tear the dog ears off the plates but the plates are much easer and cheaper to replace .

    Hope that covers things off .

  7. #7
    8,000rpm (B Series Redline!) lotusboy's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    Thanks for the through replies guys


    That's it there. I think its a 2way, but not too sure, has 3 different settings apparently, depending on plate arrangement.

    Hmmm thanks for the feedback Ebola_One... purpose of the car will be weekend warrior / back road thrash / occasional drag racer. Unlikely to see circuit time. Just wondering, do I go open diff then, and keep the lsd for the track car, or run it because I already have traction issues without the turbo.

    My concern is that the diff will be to aggressive and that the car will lose the 'fun factor' that it has currently on twisty roads such as twilight etc.

    Have you got any specs from the diff's you've run Tyson for a comparison?
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  8. #8
    Team NZH: Order of Merit Horny_Devil's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    its not a 2 way

    the bit under the bearing looks the same as the one ebola posted thats whats going to tell you what kind it is

    get a better photo of one of the 4 cutouts on its upper surface
    Quote Originally Posted by permaisuri View Post
    ooh yeah, i read it differently.... sorry, im asian with 4 eyes... shouldve read better....

  9. #9
    11,000rpm (Spoon B16B!!) Gudgen's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    Looks like 1.5 way.

  10. #10
    7,000rpm (Peak Power) starlet's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    have one in my now road car (j's racing 1.5way), will be swapping out for helical type r Item.

    MINT for track
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  11. #11
    Team NZH: Committee tysonzane's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    Looks like either a 1 way or a 1.5 way with very little clamp on decel. If you give us a closer image we can let you know. If the other side the cut out angle of the cage that holds the spider gears is completely flat and 90* to the flat surface then you've got a 1 way. The ramp angle is quite mild so lock up will be quite progressive and not too aggressive. Its a spring washer diff not normal springs right?

    Quote Originally Posted by lotusboy View Post
    Have you got any specs from the diff's you've run Tyson for a comparison?
    Not sure what specs your afte. I have a Spoon which is exactly the same as a Kaaz (they work well but aren't strong and the design is average) and its a spring washer type but has alot of preload so the noise I was getting wasn't the loose plates clacking together and moving slightly it was the plates binding and then been forced to slip and skip if that makes sense.

    I know some of the Cusco's (best diffs in the world!!) have a large range of adjustability from different numbers of springs to different tension springs to different ramp angles (sometimes you can switch between the 'ways'), different plate types and ofcourse the preload.

    The diffs are quite simple to work on and put together but the difference between an good job and an awesome job is a fine line but the results can be quite dramatic.

    In a straight line sense and straight line traction sense you'll notice a plate diff is a little better then a factory style LSD but once you start going around any kind of corners or going on uneven ground the plate diff suddenly KILLS an OEM diff.

    If you get the diff setup right with a tiny bit of preload it will be fine on the road and I think you'll enjoy quite a lot. It would also be worth getting those spider gears cryor frozen (mine cost $80) if you plan on hitting the strip .

  12. #12
    7,000rpm (Peak Power) starlet's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    Agree with Tyson, Plate diff is a hole new world compared to OEM LSD's, or helical quiafe ones etc
    EF-K20A in the build!
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  13. #13
    8,000rpm (B Series Redline!) lotusboy's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    The internetz its serious business

  14. #14
    Team NZH: Order of Merit doo0T!doo0T!'s Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    Nah it'll be shit just sell it to me.

  15. #15
    Team NZH: Order of Merit Horny_Devil's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    1 way
    Quote Originally Posted by permaisuri View Post
    ooh yeah, i read it differently.... sorry, im asian with 4 eyes... shouldve read better....

  16. #16
    8,000rpm (B Series Redline!) lotusboy's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    @Tyson

    These are the specs I've been given for the different settings
    "A" - Road Racing (Super Hard)
    Initial Torque 5.6kg-m
    Transfer Ratio 9.0

    "B" - Auto-X (Hard)
    Initial Torque 5.1kg-m
    Transfer Ratio 6.2

    "C" - Auto-X (Soft)
    Initial Torque 2.8kg
    Transfer Ratio 4.5

    Just wanting any kind of comparison with these to other FWD setups

    Also that Diffs of this kind (Old School Mugen) Come with setting "A" from the factory. Also have some photocopied instructions on how to install, and how to set the plates if anyone ever comes across another of these.

    Just to add some information / value to the thread
    Quote Originally Posted by Old school honda guru / reputable new zealand honda workshop
    If I was you, and this diff is a mugen one, I wouldn't get the additional treating as the factory mugen ones are known to be good - example used dave strongs rally car, 7 years hard use without replacement. However some of chinese built brands are known for cracking on the casing and spider gears so it would be a different story for them
    The internetz its serious business

  17. #17
    Team NZH: Committee tysonzane's Avatar
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    Re: Plate Diff lsd info, suitable for road cars?

    Good info there! If its the old school honda guru i'm thinking of then i'd go by his word 100%. It is a fact that the Kaaz diffs (J's, Spoon etc) are just shit build quality and a poor design.

    I dont know how you change the settings on that diff and I've got no idea what the Kaaz settings are because they seem like more of a throw together diff then something involving precision assembly (since I've seen so many diffs that are all very different).

    The more aggresive setup is going to feel more like a locked diff and lock up earlier which will make it hop and bind on tight stuff at low speed but I THINK the least aggressive setup might have plate shudder and vibration at low or off throttle as there is little or no pressure on the plates. I haven't run a diff with intentional low clamping pressure other then what my diff was like originally before it broke.

    Whack it in and enjoy it

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