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post #1 of (permalink) Old 08-17-2003, 08:33 PM
zukiman
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Locker options for a Grand Vitara?

What options do Grand Vitara owners have for lockers in their diffs? Reading ARB's product catalog indicates that their Sidekick lockers will fit, but with some unclearly described modifications.

Ideally, if I got a GV, I'd want at least an ARB in back, if not front AND rear.

It's too bad that if you don't want to hack your fenders up, you can only fit 30x9.50's with either Calmini's suspension or the Old Man Emu springs with coil spacers. [img]images/graemlins/crybaby.gif[/img] I really want to run 31's.

-- Geoff Beasley
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 08-17-2003, 11:34 PM
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Re: Locker options for a Grand Vitara?

Yankee Tim calling YT, help this brother out....he's coming over to your side now...isn't it the dark side?
post #3 of (permalink) Old 08-17-2003, 11:59 PM
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Re: Locker options for a Grand Vitara?

Bah, I wouldn't call Tim's side the "dark side"....Tim's a good guy; he's bound to be good company. [img]images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img] Plus, he could probably use an ally on his team.... [img]images/graemlins/40BEER.gif[/img]

I know Tim has dual lockers in his ride, I just need to know what it took to get them in there. And if anyone knows how I could shoehorn some 31's under a GV, I think I know for sure which vehicle I'll wind up buying between my two choices, the 4-door 'Kick or the GV....

-- Geoff Beasley
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 08-18-2003, 10:04 AM
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Re: Locker options for a Grand Vitara?

GV, huh? What year? If it's brand new (2003), rumor is the GV now has the XL& rear axle. This kinda good, as the XL7 rear pig has a 9" ring gear and axles as big as Toy shafts. Industructable, BUT, there is not LSD or locker app for this diff year.

If not, and you have a GV with the 7.75" 12-bolt kick pig, you're in luck. You read the info on the ARB USA site, huh? Cool, I gave all that info to Tim Lund (yup, did his leg work), but they got it wrong in the translation.

For the rear, simply install an ARB for a 12-bolt kick. Ta-Da, done.

For the front, it gets a little more involved. First, if you have an auto, you MUST lose the soda can front diff and score the axle assembly out of the front of a manual GV or better, manual XL7 (or 2003 auto XL7), as ASMC finally wised up an made the axle from cast steel. If you get the XL7 pig, also get the center mount as it is a much stronger 2-piece design that won't twist (and the XL has a different mounting boss so the GV/Kick style mount won't fit)

Next, you will need an ARB for the front of a 96-98 Kick, japan made, 1.6L. This is the 26 spline design.

Next, from the same donor truck, you will need the inner front axle shaft from the drivers side, and the inner CV stub from the driver's side.

You will also ned hubs. Sammy/kick hubs will work, but Geoff, your have a GRAND Vitara, so start acting elitist. [img]images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] I chose Warn premium hubs with hub fuses. Nice hubs, fuse idea is great, and they match the gold trim on the factory alloys (i got the Limited package just to be a bigger Zook-snoot. LOL)

Once you have all these things in order, give me a yell and I'll guide you thru.

As for lifting it and boig sneakers, the GV is it's own worst enemy. Get a tape measure out and measure the wheel wheels. Pretty tight, eh?

Here's the skinny. I have about the biggest GV, at least that I know of. 2.5" CALMINI suspension and 3" CALMINI body lift = 5.5" of lift. With that, and quite a bit of trimming the plastic foo-foo, I fit LT 247/75R16, which are 31"s. That's it. In order to go bigger, I will have to hack the body for the front tires and make a new bumper and hack the body in the rear. Or get more lift.

Now the XL7 isn't like this. Bigger wheel wells means 31"s on just the 2.5" of lift, and prolly 33"s with the body lift.

If you are chosing between the Kick and GV, then the answer can be had in one word...V6!
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 08-19-2003, 03:00 AM
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Re: Locker options for a Grand Vitara?

Tim,

Thanks so much for all the info!

I'm still debating between a 'Kick and a Grand Vitara, but your information is definitely helping to persuade me to go the foo-foo route. [img]images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

If I do get a GV or a 'Kick, it'll be a used one, as cheap as I can find, because I do plan to 'wheel it and I don't have $25,000 to blow on a brand-new rig. All of this, of course, is pending the sale of my two Samurais.

The rear diff will use the ARB RD79 locker, right?

You're saying that the automatic GVs have an aluminum front diff, and the manuals have a cast iron front diff? And the front will take the ARB RD88 locker? I should be able to pick up the driver's-side inner front axle shaft and CV stub from someplace like Petroworks or Hawk, or if worse comes to worst, a dealership, right?

Hubs are no problem; I was already planning to get the Warn hubs with the hub fuses.

As far as fitting tires, I know that the GV's wheelwells are tiny, just like the X-90's. That's why on my sister's X-90 with the OME lift, we had to stop at 225/70-15's, a mere 27 inches tall, instead of the 29 inches that'll fit on a 'Kick with the exact same suspension. I'm hoping to be able to run 30x9.50's with Calmini's 2.5-inch lift. Do you think that'll be sufficient? I suppose I could try adding coil spacers to that kit, but I'm afraid that would either cause major CV problems, and/or throw the camber way too far out of whack. What do you think?

Fitting 30's is easy on both the 'Kick and the GV. Fitting 31's or 32's on a 'Kick is only slightly more complex, while fitting anything bigger than 30's on a GV is nearly impossible. [img]images/graemlins/lame.jpg[/img] But with the type of off-roading I intend to do from now on, I think that a GV on 30's with even just a rear locker may fit my needs perfectly. I might throw Calmini's winch mount on the front, if it's actually strong enough to withstand the tug of a winch, and a front locker might wind up coming in useful as a supplement to the rear locker. But at least with the V6 and smaller tires, I wouldn't have to worry about re-gearing the diffs like I would with the 4-cylinder Sidekick.

Just curious, what is your opinion of the 127-hp 2.0-liter 4-cylinder-powered Vitara and Tracker from '99 to present? That's still an option in my mind, especially considering that I could find one for cheaper than a GV. Do they use the same diffs as the Grand version? I'm wondering if, with less plastic body cladding, they might be able to accept a 31-inch tire more easily?

I'd love to see some photos of your GV that show off just how high it's sitting and where you had to trim to fit 31's. About the only photo I've seen of it is your avatar where it's wedged between the rocks. We need to see more! [img]images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

Thanks for all your help.... [img]images/graemlins/RockOn.gif[/img]

-- Geoff
post #6 of (permalink) Old 08-19-2003, 10:39 AM
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Re: Locker options for a Grand Vitara?

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
but your information is definitely helping to persuade me to go the foo-foo route.

[/ QUOTE ]

At first I didn't like the plastic foo-foo, but rocks changed that. Rocks bend sheet metal, and it's a bitch to do a quickie fix. The foo-foo is forgiving, and gives with the rocks, to the point that the metal will bend beneath, but the foo-foo just pops back. A little jizz from a hot glue gun, a little sanding and touch up paint and it's hard to find the scratches in the plastic. Kinda cool.

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
If I do get a GV or a 'Kick, it'll be a used one, as cheap as I can find,

[/ QUOTE ]

Avoid 99's (many problems, first year). If you can, score a 2001 or newer, as the HP and torque #s are higher.

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
The rear diff will use the ARB RD79 locker, right?

[/ QUOTE ]

Yup

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
You're saying that the automatic GVs have an aluminum front diff, and the manuals have a cast iron front diff?

[/ QUOTE ]

Until the current model year, yes. From what I understand, the XL&amp; and GV (I believe) now have steel fronts in both auto and stick.

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
And the front will take the ARB RD88 locker?

[/ QUOTE ]

Yup, just gotta do the front end "shiit-on-the-fly" elimination conversion.

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
I should be able to pick up the driver's-side inner front axle shaft and CV stub

[/ QUOTE ]

I got the CV shaft from AutoZone for $80. I got 3 axle shafts from a pick-n-pul for $8 each. In a pinch, you can cut down the GV's shaft, but you lose the snap ring (no biggie).

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
Hubs are no problem; I was already planning to get the Warn hubs with the hub fuses.

[/ QUOTE ]

Cool. I hear Wheeler's is modifying the fuses for Zooks. Maybe you can contact him and see if he can do it to sheer for a GV/Kick CV?

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
I'm hoping to be able to run 30x9.50's

[/ QUOTE ]

Well, for one, you MUST use the stock rims, unless you go with expensive alloys. The GV has big calipers, and uses a 16x7 JJ rim to clear them. I hunted for a cheap steel rims from my mudders, leaving the AT's on my stock alloys for steet. (NOTE: the alloy on a 2000 GV Limited cost over $700 a piece!) No one (and I tried everyone) makes a steel rim to fit the GV. I even test fit several rims to see, (including AR rockcrawlers), but nothing. I finally hooked up with a dealer and bought some take-offs for $200.

What does this mean? 16" tires for you. With th 2.5" alone, LT 225/75 and LT 245/70 work and fit well, with minor trimming (thats a 29.5 - 29/8" tire).

Steve/CALMINI might be releasing his 3" body lift soon. I've been testing a proto for about 18 months and it works very well. Many things need to be altered. Steering linkage, strut brace, shifter linkage, etc. Of all the Zooks, the GV is 10X hard to body lift. The RRO body lift doesn't work as a memeber on the Yahoo! GV list tired quite unsuccessfully. Rockhopper is supposed to make one, but its like $900 AU, I think, and still didn't address some of the issues I know of.

With the 3" body, you can do the 31"s.

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
I suppose I could try adding coil spacers to that kit, but I'm afraid that would either cause major CV problems, and/or throw the camber way too far out of whack. What do you think?


[/ QUOTE ]

Don't do it, my opinion.

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
But with the type of off-roading I intend to do from now on, I think that a GV on 30's with even just a rear locker may fit my needs perfectly.

[/ QUOTE ]

I traversed Lower Helldarado with 31"s and a rear locker.


</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
But at least with the V6 and smaller tires, I wouldn't have to worry about re-gearing the diffs.

[/ QUOTE ]

The GV stick has 4.30's and the Gv auto has 4.88's. And they take Kick gears. I swapped up to 5.12's in my auto, which help, but I need the 5.87s to liven it up on the road.

And only the auto GV will accept the better and less expensive CALMINI t-case cogs. The stick has a different input shaft (too short). I hear Rockhopper is making a set for the GV stick, but I know not one with them, plus, they are more expensive. And don't be afraid of the auto for offroad. I'm sold. Way more control. Now I want the GV V6 and 4spd auto in my Sammy!

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
Just curious, what is your opinion of the 127-hp 2.0-liter 4-cylinder-powered Vitara and Tracker from '99 to present?

[/ QUOTE ]

I don't. The V6 is soooooo restricted. In it's Pikes Peak version, the Suzuki H25 V6 produces over 900 hp. You heard me, 900 HP. Check out the ASMC if you don't believe.

And since Suzuki will be putting the H25 in the Aerio, the tuner crowd mught turn up more engine mods. Pushing the H25 to over 200+ ponies shouldn't be hard.

Besides, the lack of foo-foo won't allow a bigger tire. It's the steel itself that's the limiting factor.

Want to check out my GV some more? Check out these...

My GV in Moab

My GV at Zookin'

My GV rally racing
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 08-20-2003, 02:04 AM
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Re: Locker options for a Grand Vitara?

Tim, [img]images/graemlins/40BEER.gif[/img]

Thanks so much for all the info! It's guys like you who make this BBS such a great place to hang out!

I'm still debating whether to go with a cheaper Sidekick and pour more money into it to make it a kick-butt off-roader, or if I should start off with a GV and put less money into it and keep it a relatively more street-friendly truck.

Of course, my best option would be to collect at least one of EVERY 4x4....but that's a bit out of my reach at the moment. [img]images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

Thanks again for all your help. I'll keep you and the rest of this BBS updated on what I wind up buying and how I wind up modifying it. But as you can tell from my Samurai, I just can't leave anything alone. [img]images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img] Whatever I buy, it should wind up being a pretty cool truck.

-- Geoff
post #8 of (permalink) Old 08-20-2003, 10:36 AM
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Re: Locker options for a Grand Vitara?

If you go with a Kick, go late model (96-98) as they have the 26 spline front diffs. Also, they sport the nice Aisin/Werner 4spd auto like the GV. Nice tranny, same as in the Mitsu Pajero (2dr Montero).

But you will be happier with the GV. Reasons?

Newer.
Bigger.
V6 means more HP and torque.
More luxury (nice on the trail when with company).
It has thicker rear axles.
It has an air-bag sensor in the cab, not on the bumper, making body lifts easy and safe.
Wider is better.
Rack and Pinion elimiates the weaker Kick idler arm set up.
Larger calipers, discs and drums means better stopping with big tires.

In otherwords, the GV is a more refined Kick. Go new, be part of the Zook Snoots. [img]images/graemlins/40BEER.gif[/img]
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 08-20-2003, 10:16 PM
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Re: Locker options for a Grand Vitara?

Tim, you're absolutely right on all counts (as usual!) but I thought I'd give you my thoughts in response to your comments:

Newer. True, but I'm sure I can find a 96-98 'Kick in pretty darn good shape if I look long enough.
Bigger. No doubt. But I'll be moving up from a Samurai, so even the 4-door 'Kick is gonna feel like a Suburban for a while!
V6 means more HP and torque. Hah! 97hp vs. 165hp. I don't know if I'll notice a difference. [img]images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]
More luxury (nice on the trail when with company). Well I have taken my folks' 98 Grand Cherokee 5.9 Limited 'wheeling before...a little too much luxury! But the GV might be the right combination, as long as I don't mind getting it dusty inside....
It has thicker rear axles. It needs 'em, with its additional power and weight!
It has an air-bag sensor in the cab, not on the bumper, making body lifts easy and safe. I was planning to pull the fuse (or by some other means disable the Sidekick's airbags anyway) so that I would be safe on the trail. I'd be pulling the plastic bumpers off anyways and putting some real bumpers on there anyways.
Wider is better. I agree. My Sammy is 14 inches wider than stock! I can sidehill like you wouldn't believe. [img]images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]
Rack and Pinion elimiates the weaker Kick idler arm set up. Very true. I was planning to get Calmini's idler arm brace to the 'Kick anyways, but it'd be nice to not have to worry about the problem at all in the first place with a GV.
Larger calipers, discs and drums means better stopping with big tires. Very true, but 31's won't be too bad. I wound up upgrading to rear discs on my Sammy when I went to the ~100lb wheel/tire combinations mounted to each corner because I really noticed a decline in braking ability. But I think that 31's won't be too much of an issue for a Sidekick. If worse came to worst, I could always get a custom rear disc setup.

The main issue for me is whether I should buy a foo-foo 2001 Grand Vitara for $8000 and then put $1000 in mods into it, or if I should start with a $4000 Sidekick and then put $5000 in mods into it. As much as I'd LOVE a GV, I think a Sidekick will meet my needs and my budget a little bit better than the GV.

I don't need a vehicle that's fast and powerful; I've been driving nothing but Samurais for the last...ohhh, DECADE...so I think I'm used to that far right lane by now. And as nice as it is, I really don't need any fancy luxury stuff. I just want A/C for my desert 'wheeling. My real goal is to have a Rubicon-capable vehicle that's also comfortable on long-distance drives. I'm getting old and soft, I guess. I want something that's relatively quiet, easier to get into and out of, a bit larger, and significantly more comfortable on the road, since it will continue to be my daily driver. Right now I'm paying to register, smog, insure, and maintain two vehicles, which I could be avoiding by owning the proper vehicle for my needs. A GV would sure be nice, but I don't think I can build one that's Rubicon-capable.

Well, I'm sure I could get a stock GV through the 'Con, but it'd likely only make it through once, and it wouldn't be too pretty afterwards. A 2.5-inch lift with a locker and 30's would make it through a few times before it died, but I don't want to beat the vehicle up. A Sidekick on 31's with 6 inches of lift, good bumpers, rocker panel sliders, and a locker or two would be absolutely begging to play on the Rubicon, yet with its IFS and reasonable size tires, it'd be perfectly comfortable as a daily driver too.

If a properly-engineered body lift for the Grand Vitara was on the market and affordable, I'd probably wind up with a GV. But I just don't consider a vehicle the size of the Sidekick or GV to be Rubicon-capable until it has 31-inch tires minimum. Sure, they can get through with less, but they'll get pretty beaten up in the process. And I'm not talking about playing in the Little Sluice; I'm talking about the unavoidable tough sections, like Walker Hill and Cadillac Hill, which require a good driver and a good rig. I plan to be driving (and 'wheeling) the thing for the next 10 years, just like I did with my Sammy. I just need something bigger and more comfortable.

Plus, I think it'll be fun to do stuff in an IFS "grocery-getter" that so many Jeepers struggle with. [img]images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

-- Geoff
post #10 of (permalink) Old 07-03-2014, 10:11 PM
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2003 Vitara

Hello all,
Just broke my front diff, want to replace the al. one with steel,
found a 2003 Gv manual steel and a 2004 xl7 auto steel, could some one let me know what is involved in getting rid of the "shift on the fly" thing and instaling a locker.

Thanks
grover

2003 Vitara, 2.5 in calmini lift 31" mud and snows
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