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Jeep Wrangler 4High vs 4Low


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All I can say is good luck with the use of 4L on long climbs exceeding a speed of 40-50 km, please write back in 6 months with your learnings and experience.

This is the most common and only trait of biased clubs to play with ego in a pissing contest to either show who can climb the highest or who can jump the highest for maximizing damage.

For a true hill climb, there are multiple things required if you need to compare Apple to Apple. Most of it boils down to:

  • First: Experience, skills (line of attack, approach angle, distance and momentum), and understanding of your car gearing and power band, tires, tire size, tire pressure, and weight in the car.
  • Second comes power mods and suspension.
  • The Last is 4H and 4L.

 

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Let's root for each other & watch each other grow.

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3 hours ago, Naveen Raj said:

I know some of our Carnity friends  who broke their JL transmission for their love to do extreme  drives in 4L with other clubs..😃

I know people who broke ther Jeeps transmission during mall crawling in 2H.  It's not about rules or recommendations,  it's all about drivers.

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3 hours ago, Josh S said:

@Frederic would the Rubicon put even more stress on the car in 4L when compared to the Sport/Sahara given the ratios?  Ie. More likely to damage with excessive speed. 

You need to consider many factors, not only ratios. Do you know what is main problem for most of the JL / JT owners? Warranty ! Until you will be thinking about Warranty, you will never get your JL to the right level. Most important thing is to get your JL properly tunned. You need to reprogramm colling system, transmission for faster switching, and general engine parameters. Along with that you need to put good cold air intake and exhaust to be able to achieve minimum requirements. All above impossible if you want to keep Warranty. After all modification and tunning I've got around 65 HP extra, and my JT not overheating now at all, temperature never go above 90-92 deg in summer time, i've got almost immediate gear switching which is very important in high level drives. Without tunning you will not be able to achive same performance and speed in compare to sport or sahara. I am driving my JK in 4L only, but with JK it's another story, no one driving JK in 4H, 5 speed transmission will not allowed you to do anything in 4H. On Sand Runner i am more comfortable in 4H, but till some level. Above that level i must go for 4L, even i not very like it. Driving with one club where only Jeeps, i did not herd even one case of broken transmission due to driving in 4L in last year. Maybe it's a Jeep thing only, but everybody driving only in 4L. In other club all FJs and other Japanese cars always stopping to switch between 4L and 4H depends on situation.

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After absorbing detailed explanations, I'm compelled to share my own experience. Over three years of navigating my Pajero across various dunes in the UAE – from Lisaili's technical terrain to Sweihan's flowing dunes and the formidable Liwa. Never once did I switch to 4L for climbs; always in 4H, transitioning to 4H with a locked center diff in slow, technical, soft sands. As @Gaurav @Frederic  rightly puts it, driving is about fun and adrenaline, and the choice between sheer power, skill, or a combination is yours. Different clubs may have different philosophies, but having tested various approaches, I've found serenity in what works for me and hopefully you shall too! @Josh S

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3 hours ago, Josh S said:

Finally, any thoughts on additional throttle control in 4L. Being able to blip the throttle if in a drifting situation or some soft sand to help correct yourself? I find I’m usually very high up the rev range in 1st, but if I’m in second probably won’t have enough torque. 

If you start to fishtail (drift) on a slope, it’s a sign that car wants to go down the slope… you need to let go of your throttle and correct your steering angle to regain control…this is what we expect all convoy members to practice at lower levels… once you become comfortable with your car and have gained valuable experience, you will observe that once the fishtail is corrected, we use throttle and steering control to keep riding on the slope to finish the maneuver… full throttle may only be required to reach a height on the dune… after that it’s all about control..

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was enjoying this debate while eating popcorn, and I thought when the Crews started giving their advice, this thread would have been finalized, but nooooo 😂

@Josh S the easy answer is if you're driving with Carnity Marshals, 99% you'll drive in 4H. 

Using @Looper's video here >> https://www.instagram.com/p/Cz1suDgNlgq/  you can see the speed stats and he's driving around 50 km / h. Your 2021 Rubicon has the 4:1 Transfer Case Ratio ... Then the max speed is a quarter (1/4) of the max speed in 4H, assuming 160 km/h max in 4H, your 4L max speed is 40 km/h. Any more than that and you're redlining, overheating both your engine and possibly reducing transmission life.

Now those other JL Sports have 2.7:1 Transfer Case Ratio, so in 4Lo their max speed is 1/2.7 which is 60 km/h. If they're following Looper in that video, they can drive in 4L and get away with it (although I'd postulate they can't drive too long without breaks).

Yes you can run 55 mph (100 km/h) in 4Lo like video below >> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iEboJi5FhpE   Look how "Torquey" the car is when in 4Low.

The Marshals who drive in 4Lo usually have these characteristics:

1. They firmly believe the Owner's Manual only applies to Asphalt Traction. When they're driving in very loose traction like super soft sand, 4Low has more tolerances thus you can go higher than the manual says.

 

2. They have BeadLock Wheels, which are heavier and need more torque to turn than normal lighter stock wheels.

3. They have Heavier Tires, combined with BeadLock most probably 285s (33") or taller. Again, more torque needed to spin the tires.

4. They have 6-speed or 8-speed transmissions, so they can get away with 4Low + 8th Gear which is close to 4High + 1st Gear but more torque.

5. No Carnity Marshals have #1-3 above, so back to original quick rule: when driving with Carnity, use 4High :D 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/8/2024 at 9:17 PM, Zed said:

was enjoying this debate while eating popcorn, and I thought when the Crews started giving their advice, this thread would have been finalized, but nooooo 😂

@Josh S the easy answer is if you're driving with Carnity Marshals, 99% you'll drive in 4H. 

Using @Looper's video here >> https://www.instagram.com/p/Cz1suDgNlgq/  you can see the speed stats and he's driving around 50 km / h. Your 2021 Rubicon has the 4:1 Transfer Case Ratio ... Then the max speed is a quarter (1/4) of the max speed in 4H, assuming 160 km/h max in 4H, your 4L max speed is 40 km/h. Any more than that and you're redlining, overheating both your engine and possibly reducing transmission life.

Now those other JL Sports have 2.7:1 Transfer Case Ratio, so in 4Lo their max speed is 1/2.7 which is 60 km/h. If they're following Looper in that video, they can drive in 4L and get away with it (although I'd postulate they can't drive too long without breaks).

Yes you can run 55 mph (100 km/h) in 4Lo like video below >> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iEboJi5FhpE   Look how "Torquey" the car is when in 4Low.

The Marshals who drive in 4Lo usually have these characteristics:

1. They firmly believe the Owner's Manual only applies to Asphalt Traction. When they're driving in very loose traction like super soft sand, 4Low has more tolerances thus you can go higher than the manual says.

 

2. They have BeadLock Wheels, which are heavier and need more torque to turn than normal lighter stock wheels.

3. They have Heavier Tires, combined with BeadLock most probably 285s (33") or taller. Again, more torque needed to spin the tires.

4. They have 6-speed or 8-speed transmissions, so they can get away with 4Low + 8th Gear which is close to 4High + 1st Gear but more torque.

5. No Carnity Marshals have #1-3 above, so back to original quick rule: when driving with Carnity, use 4High :D 

 

 

Not sure about Jeeps specifically but my Tundra has relatively heavy tires (315 Baja Champions), of course its Supercharged and modified a lot, but I still never use 4LO, (if you really want better response from heavy and large tires, it better to regear) it stresses the car out too much and I only use it if the car is really badly stuck. In general for most cars, use 4H, use 4LO only if you see the car isn't responding well or when you feel that it needs that extra push.

Edited by Harshal
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39 minutes ago, Harshal said:

Not sure about Jeeps specifically but my Tundra has relatively heavy tires (315 Baja Champions), of course its Supercharged and modified a lot, but I still never use 4LO, (if you really want better response from heavy and large tires, it better to regear) it stresses the car out too much and I only use it if the car is really badly stuck. In general for most cars, use 4H, use 4LO only if you see the car isn't responding well or when you feel that it needs that extra push.

 

To cut the story short: Senior Marshal Fadi drives in 4Lo, and his convoy won the Desert Champions Trophy (I believe all in his convoy does the same; driving in 4Lo). That's 6 hours of non-stop driving in 4Lo and so yes you can get away with it.  His opinion on 4Lo here >> https://www.instagram.com/reel/Cm6VAp4q6lR/?igsh=ZnozYXVhbTNhZHNv

So I've re-geared 4x already and I've seen what's inside my transfer case + front & rear diffs. I would never drive 4Lo high speed in my Gear-Driven Transfer Case Land Cruiser, but I've driven a few times in 4Lo with my 5-speed Jeep with Chain-Driven Transfer Case... because Gear-Driven Transfer Case is only suitable for low-speed driving.  This is why there is No Generic Rule to 4LO: it primarily depends on the car and secondarily depends on the driver if he wishes to experiment with his car :) 

1) First front & rear to 4.88 gearing to cater for heavier tires on the Land Cruiser

2) Second opened my Transfer Case and re-geared the 4Lo gears to make 1:3 reduction in 4Lo only.

3) Third when installing ARB air lockers (carriers) I opened the front & rear differentials and notice the ring pattern signify that my differentials were not properly installed the first time. So I re-geared front & diff again, this time making sure proper break-in process is followed and triple-checking the backlash & preload of rings & pinions.

4) Finally I opened my Transfer Case again cos I was afraid same thing might happen to the Transfer Case as with the diffs. Then for fun & experiment I re-geared the 4Hi gearing in transfer case by simply changing 2 gears. This basically makes my 4Hi "spin more".

The 4.88 in front & rear diffs + the 10% underdrive in 4H gears Transfer Case = 5.3 final drive ratio so I don't need 4Lo for normal sand driving (even if my Transfer Case was Chain-Driven).

The whole Transfer Case system is just a GEAR REDUCTION mechanical device. And so a 1:4 Transfer Case Ratio for Rubicon just means the max speed in 4Lo is  1/4th of the max speed in 4Hi.  It's like driving slower than 1st Gear, but because there is no -1, -2, -3, -4  Shifter, the wizards invented Transfer Case to go Lower than Normal 1st Gear. Obviously there is no use of these lower gears in the asphalt / normal highway, but depending on car (should you wish to experiment), it may has some advantage in loose-traction areas like sand and slower-but-precision drives like rock-crawling.

 

So will 4Lo break your car? Judging by the simplicity of Gear Reduction concept, it probably won't. BUT older cars like my Land Cruiser have Gear-Driven Transfer Case whcih are not suitable for high-speed motion, so I agree with @Carnity Marshals here that you shouldn't drive in 4Lo with these kind of cars.  Newer cars with more transmission shifts and Chain-Driven Transfer Case have more flexibility... with the Chain TransferCase you can drive faster than with Noisy Gear-Driven TransferCase.  Most people who broke their transfer case in 4Lo most probably broke their Chain in the transfer case too, but for the adventurous who like to experiment with their cars, go ahead and drive in 4Lo... the theory has been laid out, and now it's time for practice 😁

 

Janb5TG.jpg

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6 minutes ago, Zed said:

 

To cut the story short: Senior Marshal Fadi drives in 4Lo, and his convoy won the Desert Champions Trophy (I believe all in his convoy does the same; driving in 4Lo). That's 6 hours of non-stop driving in 4Lo and so yes you can get away with it.  His opinion on 4Lo here >> https://www.instagram.com/reel/Cm6VAp4q6lR/?igsh=ZnozYXVhbTNhZHNv

So I've re-geared 4x already and I've seen what's inside my transfer case + front & rear diffs. I would never drive 4Lo high speed in my Gear-Driven Transfer Case Land Cruiser, but I've driven a few times in 4Lo with my 5-speed Jeep with Chain-Driven Transfer Case... because Gear-Driven Transfer Case is only suitable for low-speed driving.  This is why there is No Generic Rule to 4LO: it primarily depends on the car and secondarily depends on the driver if he wishes to experiment with his car :) 

1) First front & rear to 4.88 gearing to cater for heavier tires on the Land Cruiser

2) Second opened my Transfer Case and re-geared the 4Lo gears to make 1:3 reduction in 4Lo only.

3) Third when installing ARB air lockers (carriers) I opened the front & rear differentials and notice the ring pattern signify that my differentials were not properly installed the first time. So I re-geared front & diff again, this time making sure proper break-in process is followed and triple-checking the backlash & preload of rings & pinions.

4) Finally I opened my Transfer Case again cos I was afraid same thing might happen to the Transfer Case as with the diffs. Then for fun & experiment I re-geared the 4Hi gearing in transfer case by simply changing 2 gears. This basically makes my 4Hi "spin more".

The 4.88 in front & rear diffs + the 10% underdrive in 4H gears Transfer Case = 5.3 final drive ratio so I don't need 4Lo for normal sand driving (even if my Transfer Case was Chain-Driven).

The whole Transfer Case system is just a GEAR REDUCTION mechanical device. And so a 1:4 Transfer Case Ratio for Rubicon just means the max speed in 4Lo is  1/4th of the max speed in 4Hi.  It's like driving slower than 1st Gear, but because there is no -1, -2, -3, -4  Shifter, the wizards invented Transfer Case to go Lower than Normal 1st Gear. Obviously there is no use of these lower gears in the asphalt / normal highway, but depending on car (should you wish to experiment), it may has some advantage in loose-traction areas like sand and slower-but-precision drives like rock-crawling.

 

So will 4Lo break your car? Judging by the simplicity of Gear Reduction concept, it probably won't. BUT older cars like my Land Cruiser have Gear-Driven Transfer Case whcih are not suitable for high-speed motion, so I agree with @Carnity Marshals here that you shouldn't drive in 4Lo with these kind of cars.  Newer cars with more transmission shifts and Chain-Driven Transfer Case have more flexibility... with the Chain TransferCase you can drive faster than with Noisy Gear-Driven TransferCase.  Most people who broke their transfer case in 4Lo most probably broke their Chain in the transfer case too, but for the adventurous who like to experiment with their cars, go ahead and drive in 4Lo... the theory has been laid out, and now it's time for practice 😁

 

Janb5TG.jpg

Awesome explanation! Im looking to regear my tundra soon, ill be going with 37’s then, already got the clearance. Just thinking about my power steering system, dont want that failing, but from what Ive heard so far, after regearing most people havent had any issues.

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