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Driving on gravel roads, use 2wd or 4wd ?


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#21 trikebubble

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Posted 18 May 2018 - 07:57 PM

I do not want to derail this thread, but I've never seen a good explanation of what actually causes "washboard". I've heard tire slip, wheel hop, wind, water and gremlins, but nothing explains (to me) the almost perfectly spaced ridges that go completely across the road for such long stretches,sometimes for miles.

cwd

Russians. Russians cause washboard. It's a well known fact....

 

I go 2wd until I feel the need to for 4wd.


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#22 PackRat

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Posted 18 May 2018 - 07:58 PM

To answer your question based on the photos you posted.....2WD is fine on the roads in the photo as far as I can see, the speed you use is determined by YOU when you start out and if you feel some resistance or "floating" then you might find the "sweet spot" in terms of MPH and you are good to go.


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#23 klahanie

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Posted 18 May 2018 - 10:53 PM

Klahanie...sorry we stole the thread....washboard isn't allowed in the great north, is it ?  :D

 

No worries. We export ours to OZ. In return we can use some of their slang...

---

Russians. Russians cause washboard. It's a well known fact....

 

 LOL, mine was dentists but yours is better :)

---

 

Searching "washboard" I found this comment which I'll add here with the replys :

"Our preference is to travel in 2WD on corrugated or dirt roads that don't require the extra traction that 4WD affords. We find that 4WD 'pulls' the car around the corners and fastidiously holds it's line where the slight looseness of 2WD makes for a less fatiguing ride. It's just personal preference. If safety is paramount then select 4WD."

 

Found here :

http://outbackcrossi...rugations.shtml

 

It touches separately on fatigue and safety both of which are increasingly on my mind as I age ...

 

Thanks again for all the comments.


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#24 rubberlegs

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 03:55 AM

Our Toyota manual says to use 4WD for 10 miles per month, to lube those parts. I wonder how many people do that? You wouldn't do that to drive to the grocery store all month.


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#25 ckent323

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 06:04 AM

We have a 20 foot wide gravel over shale access driveway that is side by side with a neighbors 15 foot wide gravel over shale driveway such that it appears to be one 35 foot wide gravel street. 

 

There are three homes that share the 20 foot wide portion and there is one house that owns the 15 foot wide portion.  The length of the shared section is about 220 feet to where the 20 foot wide side ends and the 15 foot wide side continues on another 300 feet to the last house. We live in the first house off pavement.  

 

We and the residents of two other homes that use our 20 foot wide side all drive slowly on the gravel, mostly to try to keep dust production minimal.

 

One of the residents of the home accessed by the 15 foot wide side (a Woman who will go unnamed) likes to drive faster on her side.  Curiously her side develops a washboard surface (as does a particular spot on our side where she crosses over onto our side) whereas our side remains  smooth.  Periodically one of her male relatives comes over and smooths out the washboard with rake and shovel.  It reforms the same as before after a couple of months.

 

The drivers on our side probably stay in the 5 to no more than 10 mph range.   I estimate that the faster driving neighbor is typically moving at 15 - 20 mph.  She also generates a fair amount of dust in the dry season.  

 

My conclusion after years of observation of this "phenomena" is that the development of the washboard is related to slipping of the drive tires and bouncing of the suspension.  It seems there is a threshold speed above which the wash boarding forms and then gets worse and worse.

 

P.S. She is a nice lady in most all regards but refuses to slow down even though we complain about the dust she generates.  I refuse to help her male relative smooth out the washboard because it slows her down once they develop.  I have explained this all to him and he understands and knows I will help him with most anything else he needs a hand with. 

 

I display my joy at seeing her suffer from her self induced annoying ride, when I am outside and see her bouncing along, by smiling at her and waving as she drives by.


Edited by ckent323, 19 June 2018 - 06:09 AM.

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#26 Advmoto18

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Posted 09 June 2018 - 01:47 AM

Our Toyota manual says to use 4WD for 10 miles per month, to lube those parts. I wonder how many people do that? You wouldn't do that to drive to the grocery store all month.

Just like the human body...you have to exercise those joints.

 

I even run the AC in the house once/month in winter to move the refrigerant through the system since it is a lubricant as well.

 

I learned more from old military power plant/airframe mechanics then anyone else.  If parts are not exercised on a regular basis, they fail in short order, or, when you need them to perform the most.


Edited by Advmoto18, 09 June 2018 - 02:01 AM.

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#27 craig333

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 04:34 AM

Making me wonder if taking my TF out of service in the winter was a bad idea. Still haven't found anyone to service it.


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#28 Mickey Bitsko

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Posted 17 June 2018 - 01:31 PM

Op , imho, running a gravel road in 4x doesn't hurt a thing.
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#29 PackRat

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Posted 18 June 2018 - 03:52 PM

Oh man, if you enjoy watching the misery of others....especially after numerous attempts to get her to slow down, that might mean you are feeling a little "schadenfreude" !

 

In this case her misery is self-inflicted and as such, watching her bouncing down her section of the "road"

 

A washboard road may have its hills and valleys  at the correct spacing for one vehicle to ride up on both axles and down on both axels which gives a basic bounce but depending on the wheelbase of the vehicle, one may act like that while the next vehicle surfs down the road like it had a million small speed bumps.

 

In either situation, it is an annoying and uncomfortable ride especially at a speed higher than a slow crawl. I guess after hitting some higher MPHs on the highway she just can't get used to the slow pace needed to not only avoid dust, but to keep everything in her car as well as her passengers from a bouncing, bucking rind.

 

The grandkids probably think its like a Carnaval ride or something.


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#30 Mighty Dodge Ram

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 05:13 AM

Unless it’s really hard packed I slip into 4-hi on dirt roads for the added traction. Washboard? Definitely 4WD.
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