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Old 12-30-2013, 09:30 PM   #1
kingsalami
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Default Fun In The Snow & E-brake Slides = Fried Center Diff! $$

Just thought I would throw this out as a warning to anyone else tempted to throw a few E-brake slides & AWD drifts in the snow:
During the last snow storm, I thought I would have a bit of fun with the kids by doing some snow/ice drifts & a few (clutch-in) E-brake slides. I wanted to avoid too much stress on the center diff, so I made sure all wheels were on ice/snow before I disengaged VDC & feathered the throttle to have a little sideways fun. I did about 4 or 5 E-brake slides with the clutch in to make sure all wheels were going roughly the same speed. I pitched the car sideways about 7 or 8 times while feathering the throttle in a large, empty parking lot. Fun stuff, right?

This lasted about 5 minutes total & I thought I was being pretty careful....EPIC FAIL!

My tranny started chattering during the 3rd or 4th E-brake slide, so I stopped doing E-brake slides, but I continued with about 3 minutes of snow drifting. It was a lot of fun, but...
A few days later, when decelerating or downshifting, my tranny started making a noise like playing cards in stuck in bike spokes. It got progressively worse in the next couple days & I knew I had done some major damage. Long story short...I had to get it to the shop since I was pretty sure I fried the center diff. Well, I did.

This is my 66K mile DD rear tranny case - no clutch drops or drag racing. All tires replaced as a set & no major issues wheel/tire circumference-wise. Still on the original clutch.

Rear tranny housing with transfer gear chewed up by the frigging viscous coupling C-clip. A bunch of chunks blocked the lube passage & fried the rear bearing, too:


Chunks of transfer gear & C-clip in rear gear housing:


Total cost = $1600 for a new rear case, bearings & viscous coupling.
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Last edited by kingsalami; 12-30-2013 at 09:38 PM.
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Old 12-30-2013, 09:50 PM   #2
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d0000000000000000000000000000000d...

this should be stickied......or how NOT to do it while havin 'fun' burnin $100 bills
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Old 12-30-2013, 10:02 PM   #3
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Gotta Love the cir-clip
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Old 12-31-2013, 03:13 AM   #4
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DANG. Bunk trans. Should have been able to take 5 minutes of snowy fun.
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:45 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biggreen96 View Post
DANG. Bunk trans. Should have been able to take 5 minutes of snowy fun.
Not with e brake slides... this is 100% driver error. it creates a speed differential between the front and rear axles and forces the center diff to lock up. Front wheels move rear doesnt. EXTREME speed differential and a boat load of stress on the center diff. 5 minutes of abuse is more than enough to cause worse damage than what was caused...
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:59 AM   #6
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Bummer. Moar power, less ebrake.
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Old 12-31-2013, 09:09 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2Fast4U1DAY View Post
Not with e brake slides... this is 100% driver error. it creates a speed differential between the front and rear axles and forces the center diff to lock up. Front wheels move rear doesnt. EXTREME speed differential and a boat load of stress on the center diff. 5 minutes of abuse is more than enough to cause worse damage than what was caused...
So, did the clip cause the tooth breakage or did the tooth breakage cause the clip to come loose? To me, a big difference.
Am trying to understand how the rally cars can use their handbrake without issue.
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Old 12-31-2013, 09:11 AM   #8
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Firstly, it's not an E-brake, it's a parking brake.
Secondly, why are you needing to use it to generate a slide in your AWD car?
Thirdly, at least you somewhat learned a lesson.
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Old 12-31-2013, 09:37 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HinshawWRX View Post
Firstly, it's not an E-brake, it's a parking brake. Secondly, why are you needing to use it to generate a slide in your AWD car? Thirdly, at least you somewhat learned a lesson.
how about something useful rather than salt in the wound?
Hand-brake turns (see, I didn't say "E-brake" or "Parking Brake"!) are a useful and common technique to use. I used them in Autocross.
I,d like some answers about how you can do what the big boys ARE doing.
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Old 12-31-2013, 09:42 AM   #10
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That is useful. It's educating the difference between boy racer terms and real life.

And I didn't realize auto cross and snow hooning we the same thing.
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Old 12-31-2013, 09:42 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scargod View Post
how about something useful rather than salt in the wound?
Hand-brake turns (see, I didn't say "E-brake" or "Parking Brake"!) are a useful and common technique to use. I used them in Autocross.
I,d like some answers about how you can do what the big boys ARE doing.
The big boys have sequential shift transmissions with upgraded LSD diffs. And they arent a viscous coupling... Their hand brake is not ran by the parking brake its a whole extra hydraulic system tied into the sevice brakes... comparing a production car to a rally car is beyond comparing apples to oranges.
Youd have to pay to play like the big boys if you want big boy features

Annnnddd tire scrubbing in an auto cross is surely not the fastest way around.... ;-)
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Old 12-31-2013, 09:47 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scargod View Post
So, did the clip cause the tooth breakage or did the tooth breakage cause the clip to come loose? To me, a big difference.
Am trying to understand how the rally cars can use their handbrake without issue.
The clip definitely caused the tooth breakage. Not vice versa
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Old 12-31-2013, 11:57 AM   #13
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Get an auto if you want to do E-brake slides, you can wire the parking brake switch to the solenoid circuit and release the transfer clutch when the handle is up...
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Old 12-31-2013, 12:04 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scargod View Post
how about something useful rather than salt in the wound?
Hand-brake turns (see, I didn't say "E-brake" or "Parking Brake"!) are a useful and common technique to use. I used them in Autocross.
I,d like some answers about how you can do what the big boys ARE doing.
Wait.

So you autocrossed this car?

And used the hand brake to "assist" in rotating the rear?

On dry pavement?

While autocrossing?

AND while goofing in the snow?
















Well there's yer problem right there.
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Old 12-31-2013, 01:07 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scargod View Post
So, did the clip cause the tooth breakage or did the tooth breakage cause the clip to come loose? To me, a big difference.
Am trying to understand how the rally cars can use their handbrake without issue.
we 'blip' the ebrake.
holding the ebrake on on snow and ice, as most true hoons have likely discovered, eventually(after more than a blip) locks the front wheels too. Which I imagine is hell on the gears in the transfer case.
but I've done that too and lived to hoon again. I vote bunk trans.
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Old 12-31-2013, 02:50 PM   #16
kingsalami
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Thanks for all your replies - helpful or not.
FWIW, I was blipping the E-brake (or parking brake for those of you who are retentive about their automotive terms) momentarily while clutching the car with all 4 wheels on glare ice.

I knew that having a go at the E-brake while on dry pavement was a stupid thing to do, but I figured glare ice would be much more forgiving on my drivetrain. My bad.

And the errant C-clip was responsible for the interior damage you see here.
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Old 12-31-2013, 03:39 PM   #17
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Pulling the handbrake on ice is likely going to be worse for the center diff. The rear tires will lock up much more easily, and therefore the speed difference between front and rear will be greater.

Giving the car some throttle is going to be a much better way to create a slide. It works especially easily in low traction situations and it's much easier on the car because all the wheels will be free to spin.

If you really want to pull the e-brake like a rally driver, then you don't want a viscous center diff. An STI 6MT can be set up to unlock the center diff when the handbrake is pulled.
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Old 12-31-2013, 03:45 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by xluben View Post
Pulling the handbrake on ice is likely going to be worse for the center diff. The rear tires will lock up much more easily, and therefore the speed difference between front and rear will be greater.

Giving the car some throttle is going to be a much better way to create a slide. It works especially easily in low traction situations and it's much easier on the car because all the wheels will be free to spin.

If you really want to pull the e-brake like a rally driver, then you don't want a viscous center diff. An STI 6MT can be set up to unlock the center diff when the handbrake is pulled.
Yup. This.
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Old 12-31-2013, 03:47 PM   #19
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Doing what you did should have posed no problem to a trans in good health. Plenty of people are out there right now beating far harder on older equipment (like me and mine) and not having issues.

I don't declutch to blip to initiate btw...
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Old 01-02-2014, 10:07 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HinshawWRX View Post
Firstly, it's not an E-brake, it's a parking brake.
Federal DOT specs would disagree with you. It is absolutely an E-brake, there are better ways to design a parking brake if it doesn't have to serve a dual purpose. (locking pawl design, not friction...)

(federal standards say that unless you have a completely redundant system, including 2 master cylinders, you need a secondary independent brake system that can stop the car.)


Anyway though, EMERGENCY brake... As in the ex-wife cut the brake lines and you need to use it to avoid driving off the cliff in front of you. Drifting doesn't count as an emergency!
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Old 01-04-2014, 11:17 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by rkramer View Post
Federal DOT specs would disagree with you. It is absolutely an E-brake, there are better ways to design a parking brake if it doesn't have to serve a dual purpose. (locking pawl design, not friction...)

(federal standards say that unless you have a completely redundant system, including 2 master cylinders, you need a secondary independent brake system that can stop the car.)


Anyway though, EMERGENCY brake... As in the ex-wife cut the brake lines and you need to use it to avoid driving off the cliff in front of you. Drifting doesn't count as an emergency!
You say DOT disagrees, then admit it's not called an emergency brake but a secondary independent brake.

What happens when you pull an "emergency brake" at highway speeds? You loose control, hence why no one teaches that it is anything aside from a parking brake.

Why do car makes (Such as GM, Ford, Toyota, etc) call it a parking brake? For the reason that people were dumb enough to pull that handle during an emergency and wrecked, then sued them.

What do you pull when you park a manual (or depending on the person an automatic)? Your parking brake lever/handle.

Oh, and if an EX cut your brakes and there is a cliff, the brake likely won't stop you.
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Old 01-05-2014, 03:16 PM   #22
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I've read issues with the c-clip not staying.
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Old 01-06-2014, 12:49 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HinshawWRX View Post
...

What happens when you pull an "emergency brake" at highway speeds?
...
You get an emergency!

Thanks, I'm here all week.
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Old 01-06-2014, 02:50 PM   #24
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I think hand brake is the correct term
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:26 PM   #25
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Thanks for the heads up. ....
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